Confused by that headline? Under any other circumstance, I would be too. The only reason I’m not is because I know where I’m going with it. So, we’re talking about TV antennas, which is something we do a lot of here at the Solid Signal blog. It’s kind of our thing… and we’re the No. 1 online source for all things cord-cutting. TV antennas are central to the cord-cutting experience, so you can pretty much fill in the blanks from there. Which brings me back to that headline… and where I’m going with it. Cutting the cord can be made to sound easy, especially when you break it down into the three basic things you need. So, let’s start there.
Here are the three basics to cutting the cord and watching free local TV:
A TV with a digital tuner.
The best TV antenna for where you live.
The locations of the TV transmitters in your community.
So, let’s dive a little deeper into cord-cutting by taking a look at each of these things individually.
A Cord-Cutting TV?
Yes. There is such a thing. It’s any television that has a built-in digital tuner. That’s not as exotic or rare as it might sound to someone considering cutting the cord. The good news is that every TV made after March 2007 has a digital tune built into it. So, unless you bought your TV at some roadside antique shop, like this doozie here…
…chances are good that the TV you have is good to go for cutting the cord. Same goes for any future TVs you and your family might buy.
The Best TV Antenna?
Remember that part in the headline where I said that cord-cutting is easy, but it’s not? Okay. This is where things start to get a little tricky. “What’s the best TV antenna?” Our customer service reps get asked them all the time. On the one hand, that’s great because it lets us know that cord-cutting is gaining in popularity. On the other hand, it gets confusing when we have to tell people that there’s no such thing as “the best TV antenna.” Not even the most expensive ones, believe it or not.
While there’s no such thing as “the best TV antenna” there IS the best antenna for you. Yes, I realize that sounds about as convoluted as the title, so let me explain. When it comes to choosing an antenna for your home, there are a few factors to consider. The three most important ones are:
How far you live from the local broadcast towers.
What obstructions – buildings, trees, etc. – might exist between your home and the towers.
If your house is part of a homeowners association.
Finding the best antenna for you means taking these and other factors into consideration and applying it to your knowledge of TV antennas. If I didn’t already say that things would get a bit more complicated, consider yourself warned now.
TV Tower Locations
Do you know where the transmitters are in your community? Chances are good that you probably know where a couple are, most likely the big network TV stations. But there are probably more than that in your immediate area and they might be scattered across the county. In other areas, most of the transmitters are in a central location, such as the top of a mountain. And, can you tell the difference between a transmitter and a cell phone tower?
Why are these TV towers so important? Because you have to aim your antenna toward them to get the TV signal. How far away they are and whether they’re spread out or centrally located are two very important things to know before you cut the cord. There are websites that can help you locate the transmitters in your TV market; but, if you don’t know much about TV antennas, that information might not do you much good. By now, I’ve probably scared you away from cord-cutting. I hope that’s not the case because…
…Things Get Easier from Here
I did tell you they would, didn’t I? (Go back and check the title of this post if you need a refresher.) When it comes to helping you cut the cord, no one makes it easier than Solid Signal. When you call us, one of our antenna experts will:
Find the TV transmitters in your area.
Recommend the best TV antenna and equipment for you.
Ship it out to you in a timely fashion.
Provide tutorials to help you install it.
Believe it or not, installing your antenna is the easy part compared to all the research it takes to find the right antenna. Why not let one of our techs to that for you? It makes perfect sense if you think about it. We’ve been helping people cut the cord for at least 15+ years. We can help you, too. Like I said, it all starts with one easy (and free) phone call to our customer service department. You can reach them by dialing 888-233-7563. You can also contact us by filling out the form (below) and sending it our way. We look forward to helping you cut the cord!