Monday, July 25, 2011

Paper Thin Leaf Indoor HDTV Antenna - Made in the USA!

I am part of a small group of friends who are gadget enthusiasts. One of us was a cable television technician for 20 years before a television repairman who installed the tower TV antenna systems. We think that the best indoor antennas tend to be cheap, around $ 14 tops. There are lots of manufacturers and distributors of "Amazing digital" indoor antennas, which turns out to be junk and cost up to $ 130 We have tested dozens and eventually end up remains to recommend $ 4 RCA units sold by retailers like Family Dollar and Dollar General. My favorite has no fire flat antenna manufactured in China, sold by Big Lots for $ 14th when I pick up 9-11 digital and HD channels.

Each $ 30 plus the unit I have been advised by the buyer comments, I ended up back as Big Lots unit
did better. So I ordered the Leaf. I had expected some improvement because of the many very high buy rating.
I also thought I could still fall back on. At first I was skeptical. As a buyer here put it "It does not
very similar. "Paper thin and light paper sealed in plastic as my diving license. I thought 'what the hell?
I paid $ 44 for it? "My first placement and receiver scan I was not impressed. Then I read the flyer that
came with it. It goes best results from positioning the cable. Since it is in clear plastic, and I recalled a buyer said she taped it up, I took a thin large box and taped Leaf to the top of it so that the cable can be on the bottom and hanging down and I could move the box to make adjustments on the top of my entertainment system that allows me to meet with Leaf out of a window.

This time when I was scanning the channels I was floored. My TV tuner, 14 channels. I was seriously impressed when I actually try channels. I got 19 channels and a further three (two of them are analog) that do not work well. I can not wait to connect a small amplifier power line. With that I am sure I will get 22 channels, each with an indoor antenna and I do not have to move it to get them all. I can not wait to see what happens when I put Leaf to pick up stations north of me. I live in Canton, Michigan, an hour from Toledo, Ohio. I would not have believed it if a neighbor said he could get a Toledo station with an indoor antenna. I have three! I also get Canada's CBC, 9, an analog channel.

NOTE. I think many times buyers blame on an antenna, a mistake I never see mentioned in the "buyer reviews" of antennas. I'm surprised neither antenna sellers or makers educated buyers about this very real possibility.
Not all receivers are the same, not all receivers in the same TV works. For example, I bought a Haier 10 "laptop as a gift recently. When I tested the TV worked fine. I bought a second one week later as a gift.
The second Haier has a defective receiver. It takes only 2 to 3 channels with the same antenna and same places and positions where I tested the first Haier I bought. The first TV was found 9-11 channels and play them well, except one or two. Other receivers came up with different results each time I ran the scan.

When you find your results with a high purchasing nominal antenna is poor, you want to be sure that the problem is not your tuner not your antenna or your position, your house, etc. I point this out because people talk about all the possibilities starting with regret the aerial and below where their home is, the walls of their homes, etc., but suspect NEVER tuner.

Terk HDTVa Indoor Amplified High-Definition Antenna for Off-Air HDTV Reception

After having spent a bunch of acquiring a Sony LCD HDTV and upgrading our Dish service to include limited number of HDTV channels, we were eager to see what an over-the-Air Antenna might add.

In total, we tested 5, including the highly rated Zenith log periodic (about $ 40, Sears), an amplified Samsung (about $ 99 at Best Buy), an outdoor Terk 32 (about $ 80 at Circuit City), our old roof mounted VHF / UHF antenna (about 1985) and the amplified Terk HDTVa (around $ 50 at Radio Shack). The Terk HDTVa won hands down, no contest, blowing away much touted Zenith.

We live in the sparsely populated, low hills in the western Massachuetts. The THDTVa gives smoothly between 20 and 30 analog and digital (including HDTV) channels broadcast most from 12 to 45 miles away, and some as much as 65 + miles away in Connecticut. Some digital OTA channels will actually stronger than some of the (Dish) satellite digital channels.

This is definitely a keeper: a great value, gem of an antenna. So good, in fact, we are discussing giving up our $ 50/month Dish service, pay $ 15 for that to Netflix to replace HBO, and banking the remaining $ 35

RCA ANT1650R Flat Digital Amplified Indoor TV Antenna

I seldom write reviews of things that do not make the same positive impression (or terrible ones), and this was one of the positive. To be brief, with the antenna I now have signal strengths between 64-74% in some stations 38 miles away that I did not before! I did a strength test signal from six different stations, first with rabbit ears and then the amplified signal for this new RCA ANT1650. The rabbit ears on average a signal strength of 51.66% (with a low of 32% and a high of 74%). The ANT1650 had an average signal strength of 90.16% (with a low - among the tested stations - at 67% and 100%)!

This product was also very easy to install. I connected the antenna to the detachable amplifier with a coaxial cable and then connected the receiver to the TV with another coaxial cable. I then plug in the amplifier (it will work just as well as rabbit ears with the amplifier power plug adapter), turned on the TV, did an automatic channel search, deleted some analog stations, and was good to go. The flat antenna portion can be positioned in different ways, so to get the best signal. You can clip it on the wall with two screws, you can set it upright with a stand (like a picture frame) or you can lay it flat. For our situation, worked out the best in an upright position, so to avoid being heated by other equipment. Since it is quite obvious, as a form and color, it looks great as well - certainly much better than our previous ear TV rabbit. The only thing would be better if the TV worked, but this point in the first place.

Here is the signal strength results from six test stations. I tried rabbit ears on a clear morning and tested ANT1650 on a clear afternoon the same day. Both antennas were placed on the site are not necessarily ideal for ANT 1650:

With the rabbit ears and clear calm weather:

Station A: 51%
Station B: 42%
Station C: 32%
Station D: 74%
Station E: 61%
Station F: 50%

With enhanced ANT1650 stacked vertically and clear calm weather:

Station A: 94%
Station B: 67%
Station C: 93%
Station D: 100%
Station E: 100%
Station F: 87%

I have since done a follow-up tests with ANT1650 as flat, and the average slightly better with 92%, even under windy conditions.

With enhanced ANT1650 as flat and clear windy weather:

Station A: 89%
Station B: 93%
Station C: 99%
Station D: 85%
Station E: 100%
Station F: 86%

In summary, most of the stations and sounds good with the antenna just flat. Now and then, inserts a problem stationed in and out, and you must keep your antenna up. In my case it was just a station that was problematic. Not a big deal, but design-wise, they might have made it easier to keep your antenna up by having a built in swing out of the back.

Antennas Direct DB4 Multi-Directional HDTV Antenna

The DB4 was the strongest antenna I've tried. It is also the only one who will each receive only digital station of nearly 40 miles from Kansas City stations (and my signal meter is attached.) I was also able to pick up a pair of field stations, I did not expect. The build quality is better than anything I've seen.

I have recommended the DB4 to several friends who also have similar success. It would be hard to screw up the HD reception with a DB4, but I would not use an antenna, so strong is it, if you live less than five miles from the transmitter, you may encounter multipath interference.

Also remember that even a large antenna can not compensate for the line of sight obstacles such as buildings and hills, and no antenna will solve the installation problem with bad connections, splitters, long cables, low height or the wrong recipient.

Antennas Direct DB2 Multi Directional HDTV Antenna

We have a private area about 2 acres with mature (40ft +) dense trees around us. The closest antenna is 16 miles away and Chicago antennas is 44 miles away. We use this with our flat Phillips 50 "Pixel Plus 2 HD with its own built-in HDTV antenna. With only an HDTV antenna that came with your TV, we got maybe two channels on a sunny day.
We add only this antenna in our ground floor bedroom and held it behind our right: blocked views. We did a search and found 17 HDTV channels and another 20 meet usual channels.
When we placed the antenna on the roof (which is an old DirecTV cables on the roof), we had a solid 20 + channels in HDTV, and another 34 regular channels. Some breaker 't head, but most are as good as the old "regular" TV quality.

We will probably upgrade in the near future to DB4 now that we know that it works for us. This thing is not a scam, but we believe that you must be within about 30 or max 40 miles to get any reception.

Our advice:
drop useless expensive cable or satellite and take a $ 15 per month Netflix membership to beat / defeat all the Showtime and HBO stuff and put the antenna for the local news things. Saves us at least $ 60 a month.