What the Tech: Antenna TV scams

Sadly, too many antenna makers advertise claims that are flat-out lies.
Published: May. 17, 2023 at 5:30 PM EDT
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LANSING, Mich. (WILX) - The number of people cutting the cable and satellite cord continues to grow.

Roughly 10 million homes are expected to stop paying for cable this year in favor of streaming.

Your grandparents probably used a TV antenna back they’re important again to anyone with a TV. But what kind of antenna do you really need? Sadly, too many antenna makers advertise claims that are flat-out lies.

TV antennas can not tune in to channels hundreds of miles away. Reception requires line-of-sight between the antenna and the broadcast tower. The curvature of the earth prevents the signal from traveling hundreds of miles away. It’s science.

Indoor antennas can tune in stations from 30-40 miles away. Outdoor antennas can receive signals 70-90 miles away if there are no mountains in the way.

Antennas won’t get channels in 4K. Stations don’t broadcast a 4K signal. At least not yet. When they do, any antenna can tune them in.

You won’t get cable channels, no matter what the box says. Some TV markets have ATSC 3.0 which means smart TVs and antennas will receive more channels, but not live cable channels like ESPN or HBO.

A $30-40 antenna will work just as well. an old antenna works OK. I found one in my dad’s garage and it gets HD as clear as can be.

Don’t forget to scan for channels every few months. You may find channels will come in clearer and you may get channels you didn’t get before.

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