Jul 29, 2019

More TV Antenna Facts

Any TV antenna will receive analog, digital, and HD TV signals. Even those old rabbit ears that you have in storage from when you switched over to cable/satellite can be used to receive digital and HD TV signals if the station transmitters are in range. Omni directional vs. directional antennas work well for capturing stations located in different directions from your location.

Current antennas can even be used with the new ATSC 3 coming during the next few years. It will offer two way communication with TV, 4K, targeted (personal) advertising, and weather alerts. The only thing that will need to be changed is the addition of an ATSC 3 dongle/box, or an ATSC 3 equipped TV. This standard is not compatible with current over-the-air TV.

Do not worry, it will be years before the changeover is made, and stations are required by law to maintain old signals for five years. During that time the stations will be broadcasting old and new. That is why you need to re-scan your antenna stations every few months as the broadcasters have already begun to consolidate station numbers. Many cities have been testing and may begin rollout during 2020.
Some newer antennas do have better designs for pulling in some signals, but most benefits are not significant and especially not because they are labeled HD (which is not true). All newer antennas are not better. Try your old one first, then decide. Generally outdoor antennas placed higher up pull in more stations. For most local sports and news, indoor antennas work well.

You cannot use a satellite dish to receive over-the-air TV signals. It is not the correct shape and has internal circuitry that is not suitable for broadcast TV reception. You can ditch the dish and attach an antenna to the pole to reuse the pole. Also, the same coax cable works for both satellite and antenna, unless it is more than ten years old or worn, then you might consider replacing it with an RG6 cable.

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