HDTV antenna

This has very little to do with the house, but it is a project that I’ve been working on for awhile. A month or so ago we got an LCD TV with a built-in HDTV tuner. To condense a very long story down, I’ve become enlightened as to how great over-the-air (OTA) HD is. If you are capable of getting a decent enough signal (which is actually less stringent than regular analog TV), you can get a perfect quality TV signal for free. Luckily, we live less than 5 miles from the TV transmitters up in Portland’s west hills, so signal is no problem. I could almost get it working with a set-top antenna, but there would always be one channel that wouldn’t come in. And once I fiddled with it enough to get it in, another one would drop off.

I then tried moving the little antenna up into an attic cavity and snaking a coax cable down into the basement to connect to my “structured media center,” which is basically a fancy name for an overpriced, metal box. That worked surprisingly well, but it wasn’t perfect. Today I picked up this little beauty from Radio Shack for about $25. It looks like some sort of death ray, but it’s actually just a UHF antenna. Fortunately, in the Portland area, all the HDTV channels are in the UHF band, so I didn’t have to mess with a bulky VHF antenna. Right now it’s just resting on the insulation, and I’ll get back to it later to get it more properly mounted. Well, the big question, is how does it work? Simply put, it rocks! The reception is bulletproof. I am calling Comcast tomorrow to drop the cable…

Death ray antenna, sitting on our coffee table
Death ray antenna, installed in the attic

8 thoughts on “HDTV antenna

  1. This is great news. I’m actually planning on buying an HDTV soon after my floors are done (mid-May), since I don’t have time to watch all the cable tv channels, I just want the basic channels.

    Also, thanks for the mention of my blog in the Oregonian the other day. That was quite a thrill.


  2. They ran something in the Oregonian? I missed it! I emailed them awhile back saying that I was surprised they’d run that big front page story in the Living section about Oregon blogs and didn’t mention a single house blog, but I never really got a response from them, so didn’t know they’d written anything. Do you remember which day it was? I’d love to see it!

    Congrats on your dining room ceiling, by the way… looking good!


  3. HDTV Reviews

    Very nice post man! Thumbs up! 🙂 Will help me save a lot since I dont really need cable connection. I just availed one to have good quality signal. But if I can have good signals of the basic channels, I will drop the cable. hehe


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