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How Cheap TV Antennas Are Helping People Save Money

How Cheap TV Antennas Are Helping People Save Money

In this day and age, you might think that antennas are a thing of the past. It may well be that the only thing you remember about antennas is fiddling with its “rabbit ears” until you could distinguish at least something.

Cable became standard, and antennas, both indoor and outdoor became obsolete.

Have they? Not quite.

If you're paying attention, by now you know that Antennas are a crucial link between your TV or set-top box and over-the-air subscription free broadcasts

Major broadcast stations all over the world continued to send out their TV signals, with the only difference that they switched from analog to digital transmission. While you were “sleeping,” the free over-the-air HD video and sound revolution was happening… For free.

The cord-cutting revolution

You don’t need to pay any subscription fees to receive over-the-air television, plus, the picture and sound quality are far superior. This is why so many people are choosing to terminate their expensive cable subscriptions and go for smarter way to save money by pairing all the benefits of free-to-air TV with a couple of streaming services such as Netflix and Amazon Prime Video.

WeTek has joined the revolution with its WeTek Play 2, a set-top box boasting a tuner for all your free-to-air subscription-free needs, as well as the best of the internet within an Android based OS.

It’s modular tuner, allows you not only to tune it TV channels via ATSC or DVB-T but also, switch to satellite if you wish.

Looks and features for all of the budgets

Since HDTV Antennas are back in high demand, that means that competition among manufacturers has increased as well, thus bringing prices down and, ultimately, sparking technology development and innovation, which is, of course, good for end customers.

There are a lot of guides all around the web letting you know which TV Antenna would be the best for you considering your budget. One of the best is LifeWire’s 7 Antennas to Buy in 2017 where you’ll find options from 20$ to 150$.

20$ Mohu Leaf Metro Portable TV Antenna and 150$ Mohu Sky MH-110585 60 TV Antenna side by side

Better Quality

While many broadcasts are in full HD, others are presented in standard definition. What makes a huge difference is that the signal you receive with an antenna is totally uncompressed. 

Cable providers are delivering hundreds of channels, many of which you’ll never actually watch, and need to massively compress data to shrink the size of each TV channels. The higher the level of compression, the more data is lost, which leads to a perceptible quality loss.

On the other hand, over-the-air broadcast TV has far fewer channels in the broadcast TV signal compared to cable TV. As a result, less data is lost, and the picture looks clean and sharp by comparison.

When watching a movie being received from an antenna, next to a one being watched on cable, you can perceive the difference. While both are in Full HD, the picture quality of the movie being received from over-the-air is miles ahead.

Which Antenna is best for me?

TV Antennas developed so quickly that you can have some doubts believe that the object you’re looking at is an antenna.

Aesthetics aside, there’s a few things to bear in mind when choosing your antenna.

  • How far away do you live from television broadcast towers in your area?
  • Would you like an indoor or outdoor antenna?
  • Looking for UHF signal or VHF?
  • Which region of the globe do you live in?

You can get much of this information via TV Fool TV Signal Locator, which works wonders if you live in the USA, or even FCC’s own DTV Reception Maps.

If you’re in Europe, check out this amazingly helpful interactive map. Just look for your city on the box, and the map will show the closest DVB-T transmitters.

If you wish to read in depth literature on this subject, we would recommend this comprehensive guide created by Grounded Reason.