antennas

What's the best tuner for my HDTV?

Episode 1419

Michael from San Juan Capistrano, CA
TiVo Roamio

Michael put up an HDTV antenna, and for eight months he saved hundreds over a cable bill. Leo says it's also a lot better because it's not compressed. He used it on his new 65" HD TV. But his tuner died. What does Leo recommend to replace the bad tuner he had? Leo says that Hauppauge has one. Most of the tuners are mostly commodity brands. Leo's guessing that there's one factory in China that makes them and slaps different nameplates on them.

How can I get cable channels for free?

Episode 1418

Jennifer from Norco, CA
Roku Express

Jennifer is retired and doesn't want to pay for cable, so she has an antenna. She wants a few cable channels, though. Leo says she may be able to stream those channels online through her internet access. Leo recommends streaming from the cable channel website, or use a streaming box like the Roku Express. It's cheap. She should also check out tvfool.com for how to point her antenna to get the most channels.

How can I improve antenna reception?

Episode 1396

Jeremy from Costa Mesa, CA
Antenna

Jeremy is a cord cutter who uses an indoor over the air antenna to get live broadcast television, but he's not getting very good reception. Scott says like any antenna, his reception will depend on where he can put the antenna. The higher the better, and it's best to have it close to a window. Getting an amplified antenna would be a good idea as well. He should try and put it within line of sight of the broadcast transmitter. The chatroom says to use a signal booster too, but Scott says an amplifier will only amplify the noise if it's not within the range of the channel signal.

Why did my antenna stop getting one of my channels?

Episode 1354

Jill from Los Alamitos, CA
Digital TV antenna

Jill watches TV using an antenna over the roof. Leo says that's the best quality HDTV because it isn't compressed. Suddenly, however, channel 2 (2.1) is missing on her TVs, while her mom still has them. Leo says that Jill is likely on an edge area where it can work, but may not work at other times. She should check out TVFool.com and it will tell her what channels are available in her area. One TV may have a more sensitive tuner than the other, or it could be that less cable is also used, minimizing attenuation.

What is a smart TV?

Katrina from Trinity, TX

Episode 1329

Trinity wants to understand the so-called "smart TV." Leo says all that means is that she can stream video from the internet as well as watch from cable or antenna. She'll have to have a good internet connection to do that, though. If all she is doing is streaming, she won't get the live broadcasting options like sports, news and awards. If she has line of sight to a transmitter site, she can get an antenna and that will give her what she's missing from live TV.

How can I get better FM radio reception?

Episode 1327

Louie from Orange County, CA
FM Antenna

Louie wants to know what the key is to get better FM radio reception. Scott says it depends on where he is with respect to the broadcast tower. If there's a good line of sight, then he probably doesn't need much. If it's on his roof, then he's removed the obstruction of his house, which can block the signal. David also says that streaming media boxes usually have FM radios, and they can stream, so that's an option if he has bad reception.

How can I have a longer car antenna that won't hit my garage door?

Jack from Jacinta, CA

Episode 1321

Jack drives a tall Ford Transit van, and the antenna that he has won't clear his garage door. Leo says a lot of people have a whip antenna on a spring that can be tied to the back of the vehicle so it isn't any higher than the top of the roof. But Jack says the antenna mount is near the roof and even that is too tall. Leo says that increasingly we'll see fewer cars made with radios at all. Electric cars don't even come with AM radios because there's too much noise for it.

Why does my Channel Master lose signal strength?

Episode 1262

Mike from Twin Falls, ID
Channel Master

Mike has a Channel Master DVR and he had to install his own hard drive because the one it comes with is really small. But it was worth it because he doesn't have to pay a monthly fee.

The tuner, though, loses signal strength and degrades in quality sometimes. Leo says that's odd because digital should either work or not. It doesn't degrade well.

Where could I get a 12 volt TV?

Episode 1250

Doug from Santa Barbara, CA
Supersonic 19" 12 Volt WIDESCREEN LED HDTV

Doug wants a 12v TV for his RV that's about 24" in size. Leo says he could get an inverter that can convert the DC to AC. It'll drain the RV battery though, so he should be aware that. Dish has special RV packages too that aren't too costly. But as long as he's near a metro area, he can just get an antenna and get the best resolution since it's uncompressed.

Doug should check out my12voltstore.com to look for a TV.