What’s the best amplifier for an indoor antenna?

Because sometimes, an outdoor antenna just isn’t going to work for you.

Apartment dwellers, I’m talking to you here. Why should you give up your right to free TV just because you can’t mount an antenna outdoors? There’s no real substitute for a larger antenna, but today’s amplifiers do a good job of helping smaller antennas take up the slack. When your garden-variety indoor antenna doesn’t quite take up the slack, you might consider an amplifier. But, there are so many ones, which should you choose?

Before you get started…

Does your antenna already have an amplifier built-in? If you plug it into the wall, chances are it does. There are a lot of amplified indoor antennas. For those looking for a really solid choice, I recommend the Televes Dinova Boss. This is really an outdoor antenna but I recommend it for indoor use as well. It’s a little more expensive than the basic indoor antennas but you can’t beat it for a compact yet powerful option. It has a built-in amplifier that can be used if you need it.

You wouldn’t want to amplify an already amplified antenna. It’s not like you’ll create a world-ending paradox or anything… it’s just not going to give you any real benefit.

The best choice for indoor antenna amplification

The image at the top is the Winegard Boost LNA-100 amplifier. I think it’s the perfect amplifier for indoor antennas. Winegard does too, because this very same technology is used by their amplified antennas. Why is it the best?

It’s compact

This amplifier takes up practically no room. It’s so tiny you’ll forget it’s there. Connect one end to the antenna and one end to the cable. Set it, and forget it.

It’s USB powered

You can use any USB charger to power this antenna. Even better, connect it to your TV’s USB port for an even less cluttered appearance. It uses practically no power and won’t interfere with your television’s operation.

It’s got power to spare

At 20dB, this amplifier gives you the same “bump” as much larger amplifiers, without any loss of quality. If this amplifier doesn’t let you get the channel you want, chances are no amplifier will.

Will an amplifier help?

Unfortunately that’s an answer that really depends from situation to situation. In general if you get stations some of the time but not all of the time, an amplifier will help you. Generally, if you’re more than 40 miles from the towers and you’re using an indoor antenna, no amplifier is going to help you. There just isn’t enough signal for a small antenna to pick up. Remember that an amplifier can only help you with signals that your antenna can actually receive.

The thing you need to remember is that once you buy an antenna or amplifier, there’s nothing more to buy. So even if you decide to try an amplifier as an experiment, you’ll still end up spending less than you would on one month of cable or one month of a live TV streaming service.

If you’re not sure what to buy, or if an amplifier will help, why not call the experts? Solid Signal’s antenna technicians are just a call away at 877-312-4547. If it’s after East Coast business hours, just fill out the form below. Our team will get back to you, usually within 24 hours. The antenna of your dreams could be just a few days away!

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.