June 2, 2023

$40 at Amazon

Antennas Direct ClearStream Eclipse

Finest TV antenna for energy customers

You might have already spent a piece of change on a nice 4K TV and are not too eager on spending more cash. A dwell TV streaming service, a satellite tv for pc dish or cable supplier are nice methods to catch each single channel obtainable, however in actuality, you do not really want them to observe free TV. Should you dwell in an space with sign, you’ll be able to reduce the twine and purchase an reasonably priced TV antenna.

Yep, TV antennas nonetheless exist, and in the event you’re positioned in a metropolis house or elsewhere with sign, you are only one good antenna away from free entry to standard TV reveals, films, specials and sports activities.

An over-the-air, or OTA, antenna is nice for dwell occasions equivalent to sports activities and the night information. Relying on the place you reside and your sign reception capabilities, you’ll be able to watch something on NBC, Fox, ABC, CBS, PBS and another channels like MyNetworkTV and The CW. Whereas a roof-mounted tv antenna or out of doors TV antenna would do the job, you’ll be able to add an indoor antenna to your TV’s built-in tuner for as little as $20 shipped. 

Should you’re actually severe about slicing the twine, take a look at our Streaming TV Insider for much more suggestions.

Several different black and white flat TV antennas laid out against a red background.

Sarah Tew/CNET

The draw back is that in some locations, the TV sign of some channels is spotty or nonexistent because of the lack of your proximity to a broadcast tower or which are obstructions which break up the sign.

Not like a dwell TV streaming service, OTA TV is often restricted to a single tv, and the published sign from an OTA TV antenna will not work on telephones or different gadgets. Except, that’s, you kick it up a notch with an OTA DVR which has networking capabilities.


Watch this: Find out how to reduce the twine for $10: putting in an indoor antenna

The very best TV antennas we examined

Sarah Tew/CNET

  • Removable coaxial cable? Sure
  • Variety of channels: 50 in Manhattan, 61 in New Jersey
  • Variety of watchable channels: 9 out of 13 checked, each areas

The Flatenna 35 has been upgraded with a detachable antenna since our unique check. It appears that evidently sign efficiency has additionally improved — it is now the perfect of our seven fashions at pulling in channels, beating our earlier suggestion, the Antennas Direct ClearStream Eclipse. This Flat antenna is nice for many who usually are not able to putting in an outside antenna. 

And sure, the perfect TV antenna is simply $20 (together with delivery) from Channel Grasp’s web site. (It may be known as both the Flatenna 35 or Duo relying on the place you purchase it from.) Finest TV channels reception and low worth? We’ve a winner.

Learn our Channel Grasp Flatenna 35 assessment.

Sarah Tew/CNET

  • Removable coaxial cable? Sure
  • Variety of channels: 39 in Manhattan, 65 in New Jersey
  • Variety of watchable channels: 9 out of 13 checked, each areas

Possibly you have tried the Flatenna with so-so outcomes and need to give it one other shot. The Antennas Direct Eclipse received our unique comparability and carried out very effectively once more this time round at receiving a broadcast sign for a lot of TV channels. 

With its ankh-shaped and multidirectional reversible compact design, the ClearStream antenna is unquestionably distinctive. This multi-directional antenna comes with sticky tabs for attaching it to your window, which is useful. And in the event you want extra sign oomph, there is a $20 antenna amplifier obtainable as effectively.

Learn our Antennas Direct ClearStream Eclipse assessment.

Finest antennas in contrast

Value No. of channels (Manhattan) No. of channels (NJ) No. of watchable check  channels (out of 13)
Channel Grasp Flatenna 35 $20 50 61 9
AmazonBasics Extremely Skinny Indoor TV Antenna (discontinued) $21 41 64 8
Antennas Direct ClearStream Eclipse $35 39 65 9
1byOne Upgraded 2019 Digital Amplified Indoor HD TV Antenna $29 34 49 6
Mohu ReLeaf (discontinued) $30 29 66 6
U Should Have Amplified HD Digital TV Antenna $29 28 62 6
Channel Grasp Smartenna Plus (discontinued) $49 31 53 5

Different TV antennas we examined


The U Should Have Amplified HD Digital TV Antenna.

Sarah Tew/CNET

  • 1byOne Indoor Amplified HDTV Antenna: The 1byOne is one in every of two antennas on this checklist with a nonremovable coax cable, and at solely 10 ft lengthy, it could not work in some rooms the place it can’t choose up a really weak sign. The black plastic feels a little bit low-cost in contrast with the others, although the HD antenna mannequin does include a powered acquire amplifier. It was towards the underside of the pack by way of sign efficiency, however this indoor HDTV antenna was the one tv antenna to select up CBS from a TV tower at our Manhattan location (see beneath for particulars). It’s a long-range antenna that receives TV alerts as much as 200 miles. The present worth is cheaper than the others, however in our e book the Channel Grasp Flatenna is the higher guess. 
  • U Should Have Amplified HD Digital TV Antenna: The U Should Have amplified antenna comes with a sticky pad on the again and a comparatively lengthy, although nonremovable, lead at 18 ft. The included amplifier offers the antenna some flexibility and the product feels extra solidly made general than the 1byOne, although they carried out equally.

How we check TV antennas

We examined seven totally different indoor antennas with costs starting from $10 to $90 (all a lot lower than essentially the most primary cable TV). The very best TV antennas had been capable of pull in additional channels than the others and delivered stronger, clearer TV alerts, even on “downside” channels. Listed here are the seven TV antennas we initially checked out:

  • Channel Grasp Flatenna 35 ($20)
  • AmazonBasics Extremely Skinny Indoor TV Antenna ($20, discontinued)
  • 1byOne Upgraded Digital Amplified Indoor HD TV Antenna ($21)
  • Antennas Direct ClearStream Eclipse ($45)
  • Mohu ReLeaf ($30, discontinued)
  • Channel Grasp Smartenna Plus ($49, discontinued)
  • U Should Have Amplified Excessive Definition Digital TV Antenna ($29)

Very similar to actual property, how effectively a TV antenna works relies on location, location and site.

We examined the antennas in two most important areas: in midtown Manhattan only a half-mile from the published antennas on the Empire State Constructing — albeit obscured by different buildings — and in suburban New Jersey, 9 miles from the closest broadcast towers. Relying in your location, you may obtain broadcasts from a number of antennas. Hills or giant buildings in the best way will impact frequency vary and reception of TV channels.

We located every antenna in the identical spot and related it to the Channel Grasp DVR Plus, which supplies sign power knowledge in addition to a complete channel depend. We used two totally different metrics to find out which TV antenna carried out finest. The primary was a uncooked measure of the variety of channels it may detect, whereas the second concerned numerous predetermined “downside channels.” For these, we consulted an inventory of channels culled from numerous boards, for each testing areas, and gauged how effectively the antennas pulled in every channel.


The TiVo Edge is an OTA recorder for cord-cutters

Joshua Goldman/CNET

Our checklist of “downside” channels in Manhattan was WABC 7.1 (ABC), WNET 13.1 (PBS), WPIX 11.1 (CW — Manhattan solely) and WNJB 58.1 (PBS — NJ solely). As well as we added standard channels CBS 2.1, WNBC 4 (NBC), and WNYW 5 (Fox).

Whereas the outcomes will range relying on the place you reside and the way far you’re from TV towers, we discovered that the best-performing fashions acquired extra of the preferred channels in addition to native channels and extra radio broadcasts and Spanish-language stations.

A lot of the TV antennas are based mostly on the identical rectangular design, however there was one essential consideration: the cable. Did the antenna have a protracted, high-performance coaxial cable or, even higher, a removable one? You will be sticking one in every of these in your window, which might be a good distance out of your TV, so longer is best.

It is price noting that a few of these antennas — the 1byOne and the Channel Grasp Smartenna Plus — embody gain-boosting amplifiers. Whereas the 1byOne may also work with out the amp hooked up, the Channel Grasp will not. Primarily based on our experiences in numerous areas, nevertheless, amplifiers supply a wildly unpredictable sign power profit. If you cannot get TV reception with an indoor antenna, a acquire amp could not truly enable you to, and in different instances, it may make your reception worse by overloading channels that have already got a powerful sign. 


A number of antennas in our checklist embody a powered amplifier, however use thoughtfully, as these may very well make a powerful sign worse.

Sarah Tew/CNET

TV Antenna FAQs

Do I would like an antenna for a wise TV?

The primary distinction between a tv and a monitor is {that a} TV has an OTA tuner onboard, even when most individuals by no means use it. The appearance of good TV signifies that cord-cutters can now join on to the web and get on-demand streaming, in addition to dwell TV. Streaming often prices a subscription payment, whereas an antenna can obtain free alerts and with out an web connection. Whilst you do not want an antenna to make use of good TV, the 2 do complement one another very effectively.

Do indoor antennas actually work?

Relying on the place you reside, an indoor antenna can work rather well, or in no way. Should you dwell in the course of a metropolis, it is possible you are very near a broadcast antenna. Nevertheless, in the event you dwell a little bit additional out you then will not be receiving the strongest alerts and checking digital TV protection maps first could enable you to considerably.

Correspondingly, in the event you do dwell in a poor protection space, with weak alerts, an indoor antenna will not be for you. We tried utilizing the antennas at a semi-urban location in New York State’s Hudson Valley miles from town and none of them labored in any respect, even the signal-boosting Smartenna. That is why it is best to check the sign power waters with an affordable antenna first, as a substitute of spending 100 bucks on one thing that may not work in your location.

Will my antenna work with ATSC 3.0 or NextGen TV?

ATSC 3.0, also called NextGen TV, is the subsequent evolution of OTA broadcasts, and it guarantees increased resolutions, enhanced audio and interactivity. Whereas these NextGen TV options are nonetheless a methods off — in 2023 the service is within the strategy of rolling out — the excellent news is that it is designed to be backwards suitable with the present ATSC. So sure, your current antenna will nonetheless work, although you will have an ATSC 3.0 suitable tuner or TV, and an lively web connection for any interactive or on-demand options.  

How do you put in an indoor antenna?

Most modern antennas embody some type of adhesive to connect them to your wall or window. If for some motive they lack this feature you would attempt packing tape or poster putty as a substitute.

While you set up it, you’ll undoubtedly have to experiment with the location. A wall may very well be higher than a window, relying on the orientation of your dwelling space. Additionally, if attainable, maintain the antenna away from magnetic metals equivalent to safety bars or the like since they’ll intrude along with your sign power.

Should you purchase a mannequin with a brief, captive lead just like the 1byOne, remember that you could be want to purchase a male-female extension lead, and extra coaxial cable, to get it to achieve your tools. For extra on putting in an antenna take a look at our full information and video.

Extra cord-cutter suggestions

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *