Q:

How do you choose the best outdoor HDTV antenna?

A:

Quick Answer

The factors that should be considered when choosing the best outdoor HDTV antenna include orientation, distance, broadcasting band and cosmetics. Factors that can affect how well the antenna functions include uneven terrain, large structures and geographic obstructions.

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Full Answer

The geographic location affects how TV owners can receive broadcasting; therefore, users should choose the right antenna depending on where they are. An omni-directional antenna works well for people living in between broadcasting towers. A directional array works well for people living in a line-of-sight. Websites such as AnetennaPoint help people to find their location relative to broadcasting towers.

Distance from broadcast towers also affects the choice of antenna. People living in suburban or urban areas are usually within a 40 to 70-mile range of a broadcasting tower. Factors such as mountains, hills and even the curvature of the Earth can affect the signal strength. TV owners living in rural areas may be required to install alternative solutions such as multi-antenna arrays and pole mounts.

Lastly, broadcasting band plays an important role in choosing an outdoor antenna. Most HD stations broadcast on the UHF band. Sites such as AntennaPoint can help to determine how bands are divided in a specific area, as well as their relative strengths, to help choose the best antenna. Most antennas come in round and square shapes for aesthetic reasons.

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