HD-BLADE in a moving car?

Can you use the HD-BLADE in a moving car? That may be a little too much to ask of this powerful little antenna. Why? Digital tuners have to “lock on” to a signal before they can display anything, and there is a lot of information in a digital television signal and it just wasn’t designed to work in a car. HD-Radio is digital and that works fine, but TV in a moving car has been a dicey proposition.

Of course, sooner or later, the Mobile DTV revolution will take off (there are already a few devices that work) but until then let’s see if a regular TV will work in a moving car, and we’ll take the HD-BLADE along for the ride.

First step was to connect the HD-BLADE to my portable TV and do a channel scan. I put the antenna on that “sweet spot” on my desk and sure enough I got 82 channels. Then, I put the TV and antenna in the car and did another channel scan. Interestingly enough I got the exact same result, 82 channels. Then we got going.

At this point I have to mention that I wasn’t driving the car. Don’t fiddle with mobile electronics while you’re driving. I was sitting in the back seat while someone else was driving.


Well, the results were… nothing. I never got any signal from any channel for more than a few seconds. The tower that was closest to me did best, but really it was no more than 7 seconds on that channel. As soon as I came to a stop, I’d get great reception. As soon as I started moving, no reception.

Surprisingly, I got slightly better results on the highway than I did in town but that might have been due to the open spaces on the road, where in town I was always surrounded by buildings.

So, bottom line, you can’t use any digital TV, no matter what antenna, in the car while it’s moving.

About the Author

Stuart Sweet
Stuart Sweet is the editor-in-chief of The Solid Signal Blog and a "master plumber" at Signal Group, LLC. He is the author of over 8,000 articles and longform tutorials including many posted here. Reach him by clicking on "Contact the Editor" at the bottom of this page.