What to look for when buying a TV Antenna?

There are a number of factors to look out for when buying a TV antenna. Here in this article, we mention some of them that you shouldn’t miss out at all cost.

  • Frequency range

One of the key aspects to consider while choosing a TV antenna is frequency coverage. The frequency bands of transmitted signals depend on the country and area you reside in. Mostly, TV signals belong to the UHF (ultra-high frequency) band. So antennas conforming to the UHF band will be required.

What to look for when buying a TV Antenna

However, in some regions, VHF ( very high frequency) band also exists. So, accordingly, an antenna with the same compatibility needs to be installed. If you require alternative wideband antennas, log-periodic antennas are the ones to pick.

Also, be updated about the section of the band your area uses. Some antennas that are called “Digital antennas” pertain to a specific digital section of the band. Different areas of different countries use different sections of the band.

Keep that specification in mind before purchasing an antenna. Normally, the different sections belong to various TV channels so research in the local market or on the internet to find the antenna that matches the signal of your area the best.

  • Gain

A gain of an antenna is the capability of an antenna to catch signals. It is basically the sensitivity of an antenna in a specific direction. Higher gain indicates that the antenna can function properly even during periods of low signal.

Better performance is achieved by reducing the interference from other nearby antennas. In addition, you may call an antenna with more gain as more directive. This implies that the antenna is better inclined to the direction of the host television station.

Gain is measured in the logarithm of decibels. This means that an antenna with 20dB gain provides a multiplier gain of 100dB. Similarly, an antenna with 10dB gain performs 10 times better. This ratio of gain necessarily has a reference antenna to which the receptivity of your antenna is compared to. There are two kinds of reference antennas.

Anisotropic source radiates with the same potency in all directions. It is a perfect parameter for judgment. 10dB gain with respect to an isotropic source means that the antenna is 10 times better than the isotropic source.

The second reference antenna is a dipole. A dipole has a self-gain of around 2dB. So, if the gain of your antenna is 10dB with respect to a dipole, it means that it is 10 times better than a dipole and also, it is 12 times better than an isotropic source.

Remember, the higher gain is directly proportional to better receptivity.

  • Location

The location of your antenna plays a vital role in selecting the right antenna for you. Firstly, you need to enquire about the stations local to your place. The station with the shortest distance would be preferable. Also, the direction of the station matters.

Make sure there are not a lot of skyscrapers between the station and the place where you want to install the antenna. The strength of the transmitted signal and the height of the transmission tower need to be considered as well. Higher the tower, better will be the reception.

If the location is not in your favor, select an antenna, which would solve that problem. For example, if the strength of the signal is weak, you should go for an antenna with more gain.

  • Direction

Antennas are directional and multi-directional. Directional antennas pick up signals from a specified direction or angle only. Whereas, multi-directional antennas pick up signals from many directions. Directional antennas are able to catch cleaner signals since they do not have to search for signals in all directions. Multi-directional antennas tend to catch a lot of unwanted signals too in the process of gathering signals from varied directions.

Know the direction of the local station with respect to your house and then choose the direction specification. If a directional antenna doesn’t suffice, try using a rotor instead of a multi-directional antenna. Once you get the best fit for all the four factors, your choice of antenna is ought to be perfect.

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