If you have bought a new TV within the last few years, you do not have to pay for cable every month to get great-looking HDTV channels. Instead, you can get them for free over the air. All you need is a good antenna.
Any TV that was sold after 2007 has to have an ATSC tuner included in it. An ATSC tuner, also known as an HDTV tuner, lets you receive digital signals on your TV. All you need to do to receive these signals is attach an antenna to your television and plug it in.
All stations are now required to broadcast digital signals, but they are not required to broadcast HD signals. Whether they do or do not is up to the station, so it may be that in your area, there are no stations transmitting HD signals. In this case, you will have to settle for digital signals. With a good antenna, however, the quality of these broadcasts will still be a lot better than with analog.
If you are having trouble picking up many stations in your area, there are a few things that you can do. A simple adjustment of your antenna can often make all the difference. Try turning the antenna and changing the direction in which it is pointing. Often, just doing this can help you pick up some stations that you could not get before.
If you go to the website of the CEA and NAB, you can find good advice on how to orient your antenna to pick up the most channels. The site also has advice on which kind of antenna will help you get the most channels. You can also go to the website of the FCC and look at the information that they have about antennas.
A simple set-top antenna will often be enough to let you pick up the signals that are broadcast in your city. However, if you want to get even more channels, or if you live out in the country, you may need a bigger antenna. As a general rule, the larger your antenna, the more channels you will be able to receive.
Putting an antenna in your attic will help you receive more HD channels, but you will need to run the cable down from the attic to the inside of your house. This can take some work, so it may be worth it to hire a contractor to help do the job.
If you really want to pick up the most channels, mounting an antenna on the roof of your house is the way to go. By doing so, you may be able to pick up dozens of channels from hundreds of miles around. However, this can be quite a big job.
You do not have to pay a bundle to get great-looking HDTV channels. With the right antenna, you can get them for free. Depending on where you live, dozens of channels may be yours for the asking.