Use these resources to find the right antenna

Using an antenna can save you thousands of dollars in cable and satellite fees, but it’s hard to choose the right one. Antennas are still a bit more of an art than a science, and it can be hard to know which antenna you need.

The easiest way

The easiest way is to use our Antenna Help Request Form — Our team of experts will take the information you give us and create a custom recommendation from our wide selection of antennas. We have antennas that will work indoors and outdoors, and we will help you find the best choice.

If you would rather do the research yourself, there are web sites that will help you figure out the right kind of antenna for your area.
Two of the best are tvfool.com and antennaweb.com. TVfool is designed for people with a lot of antenna experience and provides charts and graphs that an expert will appreciate. AntennaWeb is provided by the Consumer Electronics Association (Solid Signal is a member) and is better for people who are just beginning to enjoy antenna television.

Here’s how you do it

The main screen at antennaweb.com simply asks you for your address.

After a moment you’ll see a list of colored antenna types between the map and the station list. Clicking on any colored item will tell you about the antenna type you’ll need.

First, look to see if any of the stations you want to get are listed as VHF stations. If so, you’ll need a VHF antenna. Many people think
that all digital TV is UHF but that isn’t true.

Use this graphic (from an earlier version of their site) to figure out what the colors mean. In order to get all the stations you want, pick the antenna type that is closest to the bottom of the graphic. If you use the most powerful antenna, you should also get channels that need a less powerful antenna. This link will explain the codes even better.

You can look at a map to show what channels you’ll get, and with which antenna color code.

Once you’ve picked an antenna, check out our line of antenna accessories. Unless you’re replacing an existing
antenna you’ll probably need a mast, and even if you’re replacing an older antenna you’ll probably need new cable.

Using an Indoor Antenna

Indoor antennas are easier to aim as needed and are well suited for picking up signals up to 30 miles away. Look through the antennaweb list to see if all your channels are within 30 miles; if they are, you can use an indoor antenna in many cases. Indoor antennas save you the time and trouble of mounting and they can be so small that you hardly notice them. Click here for our selection of indoor antennas.

Confused? Need advice? Your friends at Solid Signal are never more than a click or a phone call away! If you need help, call us at 1.877.312.4547, or fill out the form below if it’s after east coast business hours and our team will get back to you, usually within about 24 hours.

About the Author

Stuart Sweet
Stuart Sweet is the editor-in-chief of The Solid Signal Blog and a "master plumber" at Signal Group, LLC. He is the author of over 8,000 articles and longform tutorials including many posted here. Reach him by clicking on "Contact the Editor" at the bottom of this page.