With this new $10 antenna, you have no excuse not to try over-the-air TV

15 Comments

Would-be cord cutters, take notice: Antenna maker ChannelMaster just introduced a new over-the-air TV indoor antenna called the Flatenna that sells for $10 with free shipping. The antenna is capable of receiving broadcast signals from up to 35 miles away, according to ChannelMaster, and can be used to receive local broadcasters like ABC, CBS, NBC and Fox as well as many other local stations in HD.

Reception and actual channel line-up may vary based on your location, but for $10, the [company]ChannelMaster[/company] Flatenna is definitely an easy and affordable way to try over-the-air TV. And as a bonus, you get an antenna that can be mounted to your wall or window and that beats the looks of ugly old rabbit-ear-style wire antennas. Just remember: If you do switch from cable or satellite TV to over-the-air, you may have to adjust the settings of your TV to get access to the TV signals received by your antenna. Here’s how:

15 Comments

kim

the concept is great. i ran out of money so i’m glad i could turn to air tv. my problem is i’m hooked on some cable channels. what do i do. thank you.

Isaac Rabinovitch

Exactly how does this “article” differentiate itself from a plain old advertisement?

Chris Herring

I concur with Isaac R.: Is this a sponsored or “native” advertising article?

d

I think the “news” portion of this is that similar antennas from other manufacturers run 35-55 dollars (think mohu leaf).

winston

What about getting stations 50 to 80 miles away? None of these OTA antennas seem to do that – Have an old roof mount antenna could get 3 or 4 of those stations NONE of the indoor ones get any of those. I’m on Long Island and pretty much stuck with cable (had satellite for 10 years – don’t even ask).

Gregory K. Laughlin

I have a Mohu Sky in our attic and get’s stations from 65 miles away. It might do a little better were it outside on the roof. Absent unusual terrain, no antenna will reliably and continuously receive a signal from 80 miles away because of the curvature of the earth. The exception would be a broadcast tower high on a mountain and a receiving antenna high on a mountain. That doesn’t help most of us.

LaunchPad Communications

I have a dedicated laptop as an HTPC, although Chromecast has cut deeply into its use. But saying to use a USB scanner opens the question of having an adequate external antenna. Can you plug that into your USB scanner?

Chris Meadows

What about the excuse of, uh, not actually having a TV?

Is there a cheap USB over-the-air TV tuner I can attach to my PC to watch OTA TV on my monitor?

jtlagrand

I have used a PCTV Systems (formerly Pinacle?) HD mini Stick 80e 1134 with some success and pleasure depending on signal strength and quality. This unit costs about $90 for which you get a fairly decent set of features. I ran mine in the most stable config on a Lenovo ThinkPad running Vista Business (32bit). I tried to run the PCTV app on another Lenovo running Win 8.1 (64-bit)., but it was not stable and crashed after about 1 or 2 minutes of pretty good video. I’m guessing it was a driver issue. The unit also has a cable tuner, but I’ve never used it. As with any RF endeavor, getting a clean signal will be the key to making OTA solutions work satisfactorily. This unit comes with a short F-S adapter cable that allows connecting the USB tuner to a coax from an external antenna or a cable system.

Gregory K. Laughlin

A couple of years ago, I added a Hauppauge USB tuner stick to my PC, which I bought for $35 on sale. Works great for that use. I don’t use it anymore, but i was fine when I did.

John Sheffield

You forgot to remind them to have the TV scan for channels.

Janko Roettgers

True, but most people get that far. What throws them off is a channel scan that doesn’t find any channels because the TV is looking at the wrong input / tuner.

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