It used to take a lot of trial and error to get some ‘rabbit ear’ style antennas to get the reception you needed on your television. Back in the analog TV days of yesteryear, you were almost always better off with a giant outdoor antenna, but for many people this was not an option. Now that TV has gone digital, you can get some pretty incredible high definition programming right out of the air with even a simple set-top antenna or one that mounts in your attic. Here’s a look at some of the best indoor HDTV antennas currently on the market.
Terk HDTV Indoor Amplified High-Definition Antenna
No, it’s not some kind of gun from a 60’s sci-fi TV show. This little HD antenna is currently the most popular on Amazon.com, where almost a thousand people have rated it 4/5 stars. It’s only a foot tall with the adjustable antenna part sticking out twenty inches, so this thing takes much less space and looks a lot better than your average set of rabbit ears. It is amplified, so it does require an open AC outlet to plug in, but the internal signal amplifier makes it a more powerful antenna. This thing is best suited in a high open area, like a shelf or something near your HDTV to keep it out of the way. It’s neat looking enough to fit next to your entertainment center.
As of this writing, it is available at Amazon.com for just $36.71.
Terk is a division of the Audiovox Corporation, whose other brands include RCA, Jensen, and Energizer. The Terk section of the website appears to be under construction at this time.
Antennas Direct DB2 Multi Directional HDTV Antenna
The cool thing about the DB2 from Antennas Direct is that it can work indoors or outdoors. It isn’t actually that big, measuring 19 by 12 inches, but still not something you want in your living room. It can be mounted on the outside of your house, but many people just put it up in the attic to keep it out of the weather. This antenna does not include an amplifier, but it still manages to pull an 11.4 dB gain. An optional amplifier is available, though you may need to get an electrician to help you install it. If you do install in your attic, there is also an optional mounting mast that you can buy for @ $20. Bundle packages with the mount and amplifier are also available.
As of this writing, this is available from Amazon.com for just $38.13.
For more information, visit the Antennas Direct website.
RCA ANT1450M Flat Amplified HDTV Antenna
I really like the flat design of this digital HD antenna from RCA. It can be easily mounted on a wall above or behind your HDTV, or can be placed on a shelf. It is amplified using an in-line box where the power cable will connect, so you will need a free AC outlet to connect this. Because of it’s design, this is the type of antenna you can easily hide. On the downside, some user’s have complained that it is a little weak compared to other antennas. This one would be better suited for urban areas where the HD signal is much more readily available.
As of this writing, this is available from Amazon.com for just $22.19.
For more information, visit the RCA website.
Avoid Rabbit Ear HDTV Antennas
If you go to a store like Wal-Mart, for example, you’ll find several different ‘rabbit ear’ style digital antennas for less than $20. I have used a couple different ones in the past, and while they do actually work, they are also incredibly flimsy. The telescopic metal antenna break very easily and I had to replace two after they broke while being adjusted. For this reason, I am not going to recommend them when you can spend just a little more money and get something so far superior. Furthermore, those long metal antenna ‘rabbit ears’ just don’t look good next to your HDTV. When it comes to digital reception, don’t shortchange yourself with one of these cheap antennas.