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7 Things You Didn’t Know About Digital TV Antennas

A lot of people, those in their 30s and under, remember growing up with a cable box. You may remember televisions with the “bunny ears,” but chances are, your family quickly moved to cable television.

This was a time when cable television prices were not insanely high.

And the old antennas were very fickle. You would set the antenna up, and deal with loads of static and trying to get your picture to come in clear. The old antennas are nothing like the SkyLink TV antenna which is a digital TV antenna that we highly recommend.

I used to hear a lot about television antennas from my grandparents, and most of what I heard was bad. These misconceptions have since flowed down to digital antennas, and a lot of what you hear may be inaccurate.

Today, we’re going to discuss what you didn’t know about digital antennas.

1. Digital Antenna Signals are Better Than Cable and Satellite

Sometimes, old is better. You may associate television antennas with old technology, but the truth is that this technology remains superior. The main reason for the better signal and audio is that an antenna doesn’t need to compress the signal.

Cable companies compress signals, so there is a loss in both video and audio quality.

But compression is important. The compression is needed to be able to send signals over massive distances. The broadcast tower where your antenna is able to pick up stations does not require any form of compression.

When there’s no compression, you’ll enjoy a 100% unadulterated audio and visual experience.

2. Possible New Local Channels

Cable television relies on deals with media companies to be able to supply content to you. These deals mean that the cable company is effectively a middleman that will supply you with content that others create.

And there are times, in some locations, where you may be able to tap into local channels that you never knew existed when you have an antenna.

These local stations may provide great quality content, or they may be of no interest to you. Some of the local stations that you can tap into will have:

  • Sports
  • News
  • Cooking
  • Kid’s programs

3. Major Networks are Always Transmitted Over-the-Air

When you scan your signal the first time, you’ll be shocked to find that all major networks transmit their content for free over-the-air. This is content that you’ll be paying for with a cable subscription.

These networks work by playing commercials to make money. Advertisers pay them, and they provide 100% free television as a result. You’ll find that the major networks provide you with content that offers:

  • Kid’s channels
  • Local news
  • Sitcoms
  • Cooking shows
  • Movies
  • Television series

All of this is free with a digital television antenna, and it’s a one-time expense versus having to pay a monthly bill to your cable company.

4. Sub-Channels Do Exist

You may overlook what’s known as sub-channels, but you shouldn’t be ignoring them. The sub-channels that exist offer even more great content for consumers. These sub-channels or groups occur with numbers, such as 4.1 and 4.2.

Typically, there will be between one and four sub-channels available.

These channels can have additional content, all sent through your antenna at the same time. If a media company wants to be able to offer more than one main channel for their programming, they can rely on sub-channels to do so.

5. Terrain Impacts Signal

You’ve likely seen broadcast towers, and it’s easy to assume that since these towers are so high up, you’ll be able to receive a signal from anywhere. The problem is that signals degrade, and when the signal has to go through rocks, hills and other terrain, the signal quality declines.

Distance also plays a factor in the equation.

If you’re on the other side of a mountain or there is a lot in the way of your signal, you may not be able to receive as many channels as possible. Obstructions can be overcome to an extent. You can place the antenna in a new position or higher up to be able to eliminate as many obstructions as possible.

6. HD and 4K Channels are Available

Your local broadcast tower doesn’t just send signals in standard definition. A standard definition signal may actually be offered, but you’ll often find high-definition and 4K signals available.

The content producer will be the one responsible for the quality of the transmission. You may also find the same content on one or more channels or sub-channels at different definition levels to be able to accommodate a variety of different television types.

A lot of viewers will be shocked to find that the quality of the channels they receive will be higher than on their cable television.

You also benefit from uncompressed audio, so the audio will be crisp and clear with little flaws. Audio makes a major impact on your entertainment experience, and it will allow you to become far more immersed in your television programming than ever before.

7. Rescanning is Required a Few Times a Year

Broadcasts are rather consistent in terms of what content is available on which channel, but that doesn’t mean that there aren’t new channels added or channels changed. If you find that the content you want to watch is no longer available, rescan to find channels.

You should be rescanning every few months to be able to ensure that you have all of the latest channels.

Some channels are added or removed, and there are some channels which may be moved. If you ever have time, rescan for more channels. Initially, you should rescan as you adjust your antenna to be able to find the right position for the best channel selection.

Television antennas are coming back in style, and the advancements that we’re seeing with digital antennas allow for better signals, smaller antennas and high-quality television content. You have to pay just one fee for the antenna, and you’ll never have to pay for a monthly cable subscription again.

November 17, 2019 ,

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Jack here. I’m the admin behind Best HD Antenna – a site for hardcore cord cutters. I’ve been struggling to find a way to help friends and family cut the cord