Directional vs Omnidirectional TV Antenna

Directional vs Omnidirectional TV Antenna

In this article we will be looking at directional and omnidirectional TV antennas. So, what is the difference between the two? 

Let’s have a look at the omnidirectional antenna, also known as a multidirectional antenna, first. Generally, this type of antenna receives signals from all directions. This does hurt its ability to acquire signal strength as it cannot focus on a specific transmitter. If you are in an area that has a lot of TV transmitters and their signal strength is strong, this would be a great option to choose. 

The directional antenna, on the other hand, is perfect if you are in an area that doesn’t have a lot of TV transmitters and the signals you are looking for are sourced quite a distance away. Directional antennas focus mainly on one signal by literally facing in the direction of the transmitter. These antennas are not designed to receive multiple signals from all directions. 

We are going to be looking at examples of both antennas to see which one would work the best in your area. 

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1. The KING OA8500 Jack HDTV Directional Antenna

The sleek and stylish design of the King 0A8500 directional antenna makes this antenna a great option to use on your RV, camper, or motorhome. It is smaller than most antennas and lightweight. Installation is very easy so you will be able to do it by yourself. 

The interior rotation knob makes locating the strongest signal simple, so you can watch your favorite channels anywhere while you are on the road. The built-in signal meter is located at the knob, so you will be able to see exactly when the antenna detects a digital TV signal. This rotating option also makes it possible for you to get the best maximum reception at any possible time. 

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The design is also aerodynamic and up to 70% smaller than most traditional RV antennas available. Another great thing about this antenna is that there is no need to crank it up and down, thus no risk of forgetting that it is in “up” position and risking damage. 

Specifications

  • Weight – 2.6 pounds
  • Dimensions – 12 x 16 x 8.9 inches
  • Warranty – 4-Year warranty on parts and 1-year on labor

Pros

  • Easy installation 
  • 360-degree rotation
  • No need to crank antenna up or down 

Cons

  • KING MB8200 antenna mounting plate sold separately 
  • Doesn’t perform that great when far from civilization

Location is a big factor when you purchase an antenna. Before you purchase an antenna, it is a good idea to check the local reception in your area, as this will determine which networks you will be able to watch. With this Lava Antenna, which is compatible with all old and new TVs, you will be able to receive signals in HD. 

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The great thing about this antenna is that you can set it in one direction and it will receive signals from all around (360 degrees). The UHF/VHF reception shield will ensure minimum interference and has a built-in amplifier that offers low noise and high gains. 

This antenna is easy to install and the quality of reception will remain solid even when the weather is bad, though some distortion may be unavoidable. This antenna can also withstand strong winds, heavy rain, and snow without damage. 

If you will be connecting the antenna to an old analog TV you will need to purchase an analog adapter first. 

Specifications

  • Weight – 3.9 pounds
  • Dimensions – 16.2 x 11.1 x 4.1 inches
  • Warranty – Warranty is unclear

Pros

  • Protective UV coating 
  • Design is waterproof 

Cons

  • Exterior is completely made of plastic except for the wings and bolts
  • Channel reception may not be as good as the others

When it is time to upgrade your antenna, the KING OA8300 is a very great option to consider. It is super easy to get set up and installed, and no special tools are required. You can use it either at your house or when you are traveling on your RV, camper, or even your boat. The universal mounting brackets are included to fit the antenna to any surface.

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The antenna offers the best possible digital TV reception available due to the amplified, ultra-high gain of the antenna. The wide reception range and improved signal strength will provide you with an improved UHF signal. Getting a strong signal reception is so much easier and you can keep up with all of your favorite programs while you are away from home. 

Note: More than 80% of all new HDTV channels are broadcast on UHF frequencies, but you can still receive great reception on the VHF channels. 

Specifications

  • Weight – 1.5 pounds
  • Dimensions – 12 x 16 x 2 inches
  • Warranty – 1 Year warranty on parts

Pros

  • Universal mounting bracket for RV and home use 
  • AC to DC power supply included
  • Long range signal acquisition 

Cons

  • No LED indicator light 
  • Your location and surrounding landscape has a big effect on signal quality

Constantly needing to adjust your TV antenna when you want to watch a show to get the best quality signal is no fun at all. With the RCA ANT1450BE, you can hang the antenna, let it lay flat, or even have it standing up, whichever works best for you. 

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This unique design helps to improve the reception of signals by amplifying the weaker signals and it totally outperforms your traditional antennas. 

It is able to support up to 1080i HDTV broadcasts for high quality picture and sound provided it sits within a 30 mile radius of a tower. 

Specifications

  • Weight – 2 pounds
  • Dimensions – 8 x 7 x 9 inches
  • Warranty – 1-Year limited warranty

Pros

  • Sleek design 
  • 360-degree design eliminates the need for adjustments
  • Supports 1080i HDTV 

Cons

  • Unable to fine tune a channe
  • Performance not that great outside of 30-mile radius

Watching TV can be very relaxing and many people like to pass time by watching their favorite shows. But cable can be a bit on the expensive side. By watching over-the-air TV instead, you can cut your cable costs and save a ton of money. With this antenna from ClearStream, you will still be able to enjoy 1080i HD resolution and watch shows  from networks like ABC, CBS, Fox, NBC, and so many more. 

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You can either fit this antenna in your house or outside on the roof or against a wall. The technology in this antenna makes it able to receive TV channels from broadcasting towers up to 60 miles away.

Keep in mind that when you are installing this antenna that you still need to make sure that there are no trees or high buildings that could disturb the signal, as this will interfere with the signal quality. 

Specifications

  • Weight – 5.05 pounds
  • Dimensions – 9.13 x 11.75 x 20.06 inches
  • Warranty – Lifetime warranty on parts

Pros

  • Can be used inside or outside 
  • Full HD/1080i can be transmitted
  • Can receive a signal up to 60 miles away

Cons

  • Signal tends to drop easily 
  • High trees or buildings interfere with signal reception

Buyer’s Guide: Directional vs Omnidirectional TV Antenna

It is quite understandable that choosing an antenna can be quite confusing. Where do you start and what to choose? 

Directional TV antennas were designed so that you are able to point them at a TV tower and they will then pick up the signal. They focus in one direction and pick up the best signal in that direction. Without a signal detector, directional antennas are almost useless for anything but a stationary house. They may also require frequent adjustments as conditions around the signal change.

Omni-directional antennas were designed to pick up signals from all directions and are therefore much better for vehicles. Another  bonus with these antennas: you don’t need to adjust them all the time to get the best possible reception. 

A few things that play a big factor in all of these antennas are tall surrounding buildings and  trees. Both of these can all have a major impact on the quantity and quality of channels you will be able to receive. It is always the best option to look for the clearest path to the TV tower. 

Conclusion

Now that you have a better idea of what these two types of antennas can do and what will work best in your area, we hope that you are able to make an informed decision. 

And remember, the debate surrounding directional vs omnidirectional TV antennas comes down to your specific needs.

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