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Indoor HDTV Antennas Credit: Reviewed / Ben Keough

The Best Indoor HDTV Antennas of 2022

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Indoor HDTV Antennas Credit: Reviewed / Ben Keough

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Editor's Choice Product image of ClearStream Eclipse TV Antenna, 35 Mile
Best Overall

ClearStream Eclipse TV Antenna, 35 Mile

Although it's not the cheapest option, ClearSteam's Eclipse is a favorite of ours. It's attractive, it won't stand out much, and it's a top performer. Read More

Pros

  • Top-shelf performance
  • Elegant halo-like design

Cons

  • None that we could find
Editor's Choice Product image of Channel Master FLATenna 35 (CM-4001HDBW)
Best Value

Channel Master FLATenna 35 (CM-4001HDBW)

The FLATenna 35 offers exceptional performance at an unbeatable price. You can flip it over depending on whether you prefer a black or white surface. Read More

Pros

  • Great overall performance
  • Clear, consistent signal

Cons

  • Plain design
Product image of Winegard FL5500A

Winegard FL5500A

The Winegard HDTV antenna pulls in a high number of channels, but some of them are a garbled mess, unfortunately. Others just perform better. Read More

Pros

  • Above-average performance
  • High volume of channels

Cons

  • Poor watchability
Product image of Mohu Leaf Plus

Mohu Leaf Plus

The only remarkable thing about the Leaf Plus is the volume of channels it manages to pick up. Unfortunately, they're pretty glitchy most of the time. Read More

Pros

  • High volume of channels

Cons

  • Relatively poor watchability
Product image of Monoprice Active Curved HD5

Monoprice Active Curved HD5

This Monoprice antenna looks nice, and you can get one fairly cheap, its performance just doesn't impress. Read More

Pros

  • Sturdy hard-plastic construction
  • Elegant curved design

Cons

  • A little tricky to install
  • Mediocre performance

While many of the major streaming platforms make live TV possible, the feature is often locked behind a steep subscription hike. If you've cut the cord and parted ways with your cable or satellite provider, buying an HDTV antenna is the best way to source live sports like the Super Bowl or the Olympics, as well as news, classic TV, and other programming on your new TV—without any monthly fees.

Editor's Note

The recommendations in this guide are based on thorough product and market research by our team of expert product reviewers. The picks are based on examining user reviews, product specifications, and, in some limited cases, our experience with the specific products named.

Best Overall
ClearStream Eclipse TV Antenna, 35 Mile

The Clearstream Eclipse is a consistent top performer. In our testing, we found the Eclipse was able to capture a good number of channels, but where it really stands out is in its reception. It's clearer and more consistent than every other antenna on our list.

Along with its performance, the Eclipse differentiates itself from the crowd thanks to its usability and cool design. In a sea of black rectangles, its elegant, circular aesthetic is a breath of fresh air. The device also features a black side and a white side, so you can choose which fits better with your home decor.

The included "Sure Grip" adhesive strip provides a mounting option that's strong enough to grip the wall without needing screws or pins, but not so strong that it peels off your paint when repositioning. We think you'll also appreciate its detachable cable, which isn't a given in this category.

Though you'll pay a slight premium for it, the Clearstream Eclipse is a top performer and quite handsome to boot.

Pros

  • Top-shelf performance

  • Elegant halo-like design

Cons

  • None that we could find

Best Value
Channel Master FLATenna 35 (CM-4001HDBW)

The Flatenna might not have the aesthetic flair of the Clearstream Eclipse, but it holds its own in terms of performance. It was actually able to pick up more channels than any other antenna we tested, all the while maintaining a very clear, consistent signal. The Flatenna also offers the same black side/white side design of the Eclipse but doesn't have much else to differentiate it from the other flat rectangles out there.

Where the Flatenna really shines is in the performance it offers for its price, bringing comparable performance to our top pick for a fantastic price. If you're not sure an antenna is right for you and want to test one out, or if you just want a basic design that gets you all the channels you need, the Flatenna indoor TV antenna offers the best performance for the cost we've come across.

Pros

  • Great overall performance

  • Clear, consistent signal

Cons

  • Plain design

Product image of Winegard FL5500A
Winegard FL5500A

The Winegard indoor HDTV antenna is an above average performer, but its performance will cost you. While the FL5500A ties with the Leaf Plus in terms of pulling in the most channels of the group, the consistency of its reception leaves a little to be desired compared to the antennas in our top spots. When it comes to our scoring, we do reward the ability to tune into a higher number of stations, but if those stations have spotty reception (or are an outright garbled mess), we award far fewer points.

The FL5500A came with the longest cable out of all the models we reviewed. It may seem like a small bonus, but we like that it offers you more options for placement fresh out of the box (and without the need for extension cables). Overall, the FL5500A is a solid device that, unfortunately, is a little on the expensive side.

Pros

  • Above-average performance

  • High volume of channels

Cons

  • Poor watchability

Product image of Mohu Leaf Plus
Mohu Leaf Plus

The Mohu Leaf Plus is offers plenty to like, including solid reception and plenty of channels. In our testing, the Leaf Plus had almost identical performance to the Winegard FL5500A. It was able to pull in the most channels of the group, but those channels weren't particularly watchable, with pretty consistent glitching.

Again, not a particularly poor performance, but not outstanding either. While it will certainly get the job done, it's also pricier than some of our lists other options.

Pros

  • High volume of channels

Cons

  • Relatively poor watchability

Product image of Monoprice Active Curved HD5
Monoprice Active Curved HD5

We've alluded to the homogenous landscape of flat black rectangles in the indoor HDTV antenna space earlier and praised some antennas for offering something different in terms of their design. While the Monoprice Curved HD5's namesake curved shape and hard plastic construction definitely offer something different, we're not sure that's a good thing. Most of the other antennas on this list are easy to mount to a wall, but the HD5 requires tabletop space or a more robust mounting solution. In a sea of thin, unobtrusive products, it does manage to stand out—as pretty bulky.

Of course, if the HD5 had the performance to merit its design choices, we'd praise its innovation in a stagnant industry. Unfortunately, the numbers don't back that up. While the HD5 holds up to the Winegard FL5500A in terms of its image quality, it wasn't able to find nearly as many channels as either device in our tests.

Unlike the Winegard and Leaf plus that managed to outperform it, however, the HD5 does have a slightly more modest price. So if you're looking for a decent antenna and specifically want something that's more durable than the rest of the flimsy plastic squares on this list, the HD5 could be a good pick for you.

Pros

  • Sturdy hard-plastic construction

  • Elegant curved design

Cons

  • A little tricky to install

  • Mediocre performance

What You Should Know About Buying an HDTV Antenna

What Is an Indoor HDTV Antenna?

When you think of a TV antenna, you might picture the classic rabbit ear design from the 1950s. While those are still around (and still work, though not well), most modern HDTV antennas are made of thin plastic.

Antennas are basically just receivers that are able to tune into signals broadcast by local sources, typically along the UHF (ultra-high frequency) or VHF (very high frequency) bands. Assuming you're located close enough to a broadcast source, your HDTV antenna can receive that signal, free of charge.

What Are The Benefits of an HDTV Antenna?

An HDTV antenna provides free, live broadcast TV with no need for a recurring subscription. You pay once for the antenna, then you’re free to watch whatever TV signals it can find, all in high definition.

As stated above, though, there are a few caveats to this unlimited TV smorgasbord. Such limitations include your available channels being limited to what's available in your geographic location and how finicky signal quality can be depending on environmental factors.

How Do I install an Indoor HDTV Antenna?

Installing most HDTV antennas is very easy. You just attach the antenna to your TV's coaxial input via the included coaxial cable. If the antenna has signal amplification, you’ll need to connect it to a power source as well (otherwise the coax is the only necessary connection). From there, you just mount it to your wall, ideally out of the way of foot traffic, which can interrupt the signal.

How Do HDTV Antennas Work?

Your local TV stations are constantly broadcasting HD signals, typically on the UHF (ultra high frequency) or VHF (very high frequency) bands. An HDTV antenna basically just tunes into those frequency bands, allowing your TV to pluck programming right out of the air. This is a great way to supplement streaming services like Netflix and Disney+ with live TV.

Of course, this means the available channels will be limited to what's available in your area (if any). Depending on your location, you could get over 100 channels or close to zero. To find out, you can employ a service such as Antennas Direct, which can tell you which channels are available in your area based on your zip code.

Also, because the signal is line-of-sight, your placement of the antenna can significantly affect its performance. We recommend testing out a few different locations to find out where the signal is better or worse. We also recommend mounting the antenna out of the way of foot traffic or other passing objects, as that can cause the signal to drop out momentarily.

Meet the testers

Mark Brezinski

Mark Brezinski

Senior Writer

@markbrezinski

Mark Brezinski is a senior writer with over ten years of experience reviewing consumer tech and home appliances.

See all of Mark Brezinski's reviews
Ben Keough

Ben Keough

Contributor

@ben_keough

Ben is an experienced industry journalist who formerly served as Senior Editor of News and Features at Reviewed. He now contributes as a freelance writer and editor. Most recently hailing from the vast wilds of the American southwest, he is an avid photographer who is deeply disturbed by the lack of wide open landscapes in Boston.

See all of Ben Keough's reviews

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