Choosing the right digital antenna increases the number of free local channels you receive on your high definition television. Doing a little research before heading to the store prevents confusion about the type of signal, range and direction you need for your new antenna. While it may be best to consult a professional in your area, if you decide to do it yourself, here are a few suggestions.
- Skill level:
Go to AntennaWeb.org and input your address and postcode. Print out the colour coded list that the site generates.
Determine what type of signal your local broadcasters use.. Signals are transmitted in very high frequency (VHF) and ultra high frequency (UHF). The column on the list labelled "Antenna Type" has the appropriate signal type for each television channel listed. Antennas are available as VHF, UHF and a combination VHF and UHF.
Determine the antenna range and directional requirements. Range is the distance from which your antenna retrieves a signal. Antennas are available as directional, multidirectional and omnidirectional. The colours on the printed list are representative of the type of antenna that is recommended for your specific programming needs. Yellow, hunter green and aqua represent the need for a multidirectional antenna. Red, navy and purple represent the need for a directional antenna. Omnidirectional antennas are used to receive channels in every direction, but the range of signal reception is not as wide as directional antennas. Omnidirectional antennas are not specifically recommended by AntennaWeb's site.
Shop for your antenna. Look for the Consumer Electronic Association's (CEA) colour-wheel label. These antennas have been tested and approved for performance. The antennas are rated and applied colour codes that coordinate with the AntennaWeb software. Match the colours on your list to those on the colour-wheel for the best results.
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