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TV Antennas In Australia

Many of us grew up viewing over-the-air (OTA) television with an antenna before Pay TV persuaded us that cable was necessary. Did you know you can still watch free-to-air television? Did you also know that broadcast television transmissions are in HD? Additionally, it is free! Without cable, we can all watch local television networks. Only a TV antenna and a digital tuner are required. A television antenna is designed to receive VHF or UHF signals.

TV stations broadcast these signals via transmission towers, which are typically located on the station's roof or another high point, such as a hill. The antenna does not do much to convert the signal into audio and video. Your television is responsible for this. All the antenna does is ensure that the signal arrives safely from the transmission tower and is then transmitted. Any antenna is capable of receiving over-the-air TV transmissions.

With a digital tuner, an antenna from the 1950s will function. This antenna is compatible with the new ATSC 3.0 standard for over-the-air digital television transmission. However, analogue technology was phased out in Australia in 2013. With the transition to digital television, viewers gained access to more channels with improved sound and picture quality. This transition also gave everyone access to TV services regardless of where they lived.

Check to see whether an antenna is already installed on your roof. From the TV wall mount, find the wire exiting the roof. Connect the cable to the television, then scan for channels. You must verify that the antenna is correctly grounded. If you don't have any antennas or are shopping for a new one, this article is for you. It will guide you on what type of TV antenna is best for you and what to look for when shopping for one. Before that, let's look at the different types of antennas you can choose from.

Types Of TV Antennas

Indoor antennas

The indoor antenna is easy to install using the TV antenna wall mounting bracelet. However, the problem with indoor antennas is that it degrades the signals. You may get poor signal quality if you reside in an area with excellent TV signals. For best results, install the antenna on a TV wall mount near a window at a high elevation.

Indoor TV antennas are essential for anyone seeking to ditch their cable or satellite TV service provider. Purchasing an indoor TV antenna for your house is a low-cost and simple method to receive the numerous free over-the-air HD channels and a smart way to enhance the streaming services you already have.

Outdoor antennas

Yagi antennas

This is the most popular design in major Australian cities and many other locations, as Yagi antennas feature long rear cross elements and small front cross elements. This corresponds to frequency bands ranging from VHF to UHF. These are often VHF/UHF combination antennas, as most places use a combination of VHF and UHF channels.

They have lengthy components up to 2m long at the rear. These components were used to detect the ABC on the VHF Low Band (Band 1). They are no longer necessary with the transition to digital TV transmission because Band 1 is not in use anymore. Some Yagis feature corner reflectors located just behind the UHF components. This improves UHF station directionality and lowers interference from reflections.

Phased array antennas

A phased array antenna is just a flat panel with a few additional pieces in front of it. They are primarily used for UHF in rural regions. They work well in locations that are far from TV stations and have poor signal quality.

They must be positioned in the proper direction for proper polarisation as with other antennas. With these antennas, the appropriate orientation is much less noticeable, so be sure you've positioned it correctly in line with the transmitter you're directing it at.

Log periodic directional antennas

The log periodic directional antenna is a directional antenna composed of segments of varying lengths. It is designed to receive a wide range of frequencies but, as a result, has a moderate gain. LPDAs have many pairs of elements of equal length, unlike the Yagi antenna, which has identically sized elements.

Consider each pair of elements (of the same length) to be a separate antenna and each additional pair of elements to be a separate antenna that receives a different frequency range. Large log antennas can receive a wide range of frequencies. Most log-periodic antennas in Australia can receive both VHF and UHF signals.

In contrast to Yagi antennas, where more elements result in more significant gain, additional elements in LPDAs allow the antenna to receive a broader range of signals. However, it does not result in a stronger or better signal.

LPDAs have a vast frequency range, but they will lack several essential features on the technological side of things. LPDAs tend to have a low front-to-rear ratio and poor signal gain (an antenna's most crucial signal attribute).

How To Select A TV Antenna For Your TV

There are various TV antennas out there that you can choose from, but before deciding on one, it is essential to pay attention to the following factors:

Broadcast type

The initial choice is whether the antenna will be used for terrestrial or satellite transmissions (DBS). Satellite antennas often feature a parabolic reflector or dish antenna. These must be positioned perfectly on the antenna and receive satellite signals between 10.95GHz and 12.75GHz.

Terrestrial broadcasts generally work with frequencies in the UHF band of the radio spectrum, although some countries continue to use frequencies in the VHF range. External antennas on rooftops can be used inside antennae of various sizes and designs. A satellite antenna is required for satellite broadcasts, whereas a terrestrial antenna is required for terrestrial TV transmissions.


When selecting a TV antenna, frequency coverage is an essential factor. A VHF (Very High Frequency) antenna is required in places where VHF television is accessible. However, most television signals are broadcast on UHF (Ultra High Frequency).

Even when UHF is utilised, there are many bands. Thus, ensure that you have the appropriate TV antenna for your region. Log periodic antennas, also known as extreme broadband antennas, may sometimes be required. Antennas are often advertised as "Digital Antennas." This relates mostly to the TV band rather than the reception of analogue or digital transmissions.

Antenna mount

An essential consideration when selecting a TV antenna is whether the antenna will be installed indoors or outdoors. Walls limit signals from reaching an indoor antenna, as do reflections caused by objects around a building. As such, indoor antennas often perform poorly.

Fluorescent lighting, electrical equipment, and other things can increase interference. External antennas generally get a far better signal but are more costly to install. An indoor antenna may suffice if you live in a place with a strong signal. However, an exterior antenna is often recommended if the signal is poor.


The gain of any antenna is an essential metric and represents an increase in its sensitivity. The greater the gain, the better the receiver detects weak signals. It becomes more directional, requiring that it be aimed more precisely towards the TV transmitter when the antenna's gain is increased.

The positive of this metric is that it reduces the amount of interference received from other directions. Gain is expressed in decibels (dB). The larger the gain, the greater the decibel level. It is essential to understand that decibels are expressed in logarithms.

A gain of 10dB represents a tenfold increase, and 20dB represents a hundredfold gain. Decibels are only a ratio that compares a TV antenna's gain to a standard figure. The first source is a dipole, whereas the second source radiates equally well in all directions and is isotropic.

The dipole has a gain of 2.1 dB over an isotropic source. It is crucial to understand a TV antenna's gain relative to a reference antenna. Ensure that the gain refers to the same type of reference antenna when comparing several antennas. A 10dB gain for a dipole is equivalent to a 12dB in the context of an antenna array.

Antenna type

There are a variety of terrestrial television antenna types. The most common kind is the Yagi or Yagi-Uda, but there are several others. For satellite television, use log periodic antennas when television stations are separated in frequency and have a wide bandwidth.

The log periodic antenna should be considered when a wide frequency range is required for TV reception. The most vital factors to consider are size and gain. If it is physically too large, mounting may be more challenging. It will also be more susceptible to wind damage and may require a more expensive and robust fastening method.

Tips For Choosing A Good TV Antenna

Choose a large antenna

The location of the nearest tower will determine the size of your antenna. The larger your outdoor TV antenna is, the further you can be from the signal tower. According to KCCI, "As you approach the outside limit of 80 miles or so from the transmission tower, the antenna needs to become bigger and taller, possibly employing an antenna tower that extends beyond the rooftop."

VHF frequencies

An outdoor TV antenna is the best choice if you're keen on receiving VHF channels. However, if rabbit ears are your first priority, adding a UHF/VHF signal joiner is still available to unite your UHF antenna with a set of rabbit ears. You may have the best of both worlds if you're well-informed and know exactly what you need to do.

Consider reception quality

An outdoor TV antenna will always get higher quality channels than an indoor type. Some homeowners prefer to install an outdoor television antenna within the attic (depending on signal strength). You are not strictly required to install your outdoor television antenna outside. When looking for the finest TV antenna, keep reception quality in mind at all times.

Determine the location of local broadcasters

You must first know where the broadcasting towers are located to obtain free broadcasting channels. There are websites that provide this sort of information, such as AntennaWeb and BroadcastAustralia, to assist you in making a well-informed choice when selecting an antenna for your TV.

Factors That Affect Your TV Signal Quality


The Inverse-Square Law says mobile signal strength decreases with distance from the source, resulting in a poor-quality signal. Most cell towers have a range of roughly 40 kilometres on level ground before an additional antenna is required. With a high-quality external antenna, it is possible to receive signals from up to 120 kilometres away.


Radio waves can bend over hills and around structures because their environment easily diffracts them. Therefore, seeing a cell tower is not a prerequisite for receiving a signal. You can still receive cell service even if you're in a slight dip or behind a rise. Significant or abrupt topography changes will significantly impact phone coverage; in such a case, height is the most crucial factor.


Each tree absorbs and deflects a small amount of signal in densely forested areas. The most straightforward strategy for mitigating this phenomenon is to increase height to reduce the signal's path through the offending vegetation.

Building permeation

Signal strength decreases when passing through buildings, trees, water, and even the air we breathe. The most common culprits are thick and conductive surfaces like concrete, metals, and foil-based insulation; this explains why the signal may be weak indoors despite being strong outdoors.

Get An Expert To Help With Antenna Installation

Dealing with technicalities such as signal strength, gain, antenna types, where to connect the antenna on the TV wall, etc., can be very frustrating, especially if you don't have sufficient background in the field.

Getting an expert who can look at your environment, determine the best antenna for you, and assist with the antenna installation is best. You will also require the expert's services whenever you need to undertake any antenna repairs.

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