Free TV is the best TV. That’s what I think and if you disagree, then you had better roll up your shirt sleeves and prepare to rumble. And don’t give me that “this app lets me watch TV when I want it for a few dollars” either — time-shifting is one thing but those apps that do live TV shows shortly after they’re broadcasted toss in commercials. So free TV means an antenna to “capture” the HD broadcasts that don’t cost anything because the broadcast networks are providing the transmission towers without cost.
Free TV Still Costs — But Only Once
So that’s where the indoor $99.99 Eclipse Amplified comes in — to catch those TV signals permeating your home. Installation isn’t any different than any other indoor antenna, but check that — there IS a difference. Other antennas might be thin but if you want to place them on a wall near or far from the TV, affixing it to the wall is needed. That means tape or nails or something that’s invasive enough to not make you want to remove it once up for fear of ruining the decor.
Stick Me, Peel Me, Stick Me Again
Eclipse don’t play that game. Yes it’s thin, shaped more like one of those futuristic antennas from the Jetsons and not a take off on an 8×10″ piece of paper. But it’s how it goes up on the wall that lets you treat it in a cavalier fashion: it sticks to whatever surface it’s placed against. That includes windows too. Want to move it to somewhere else or take it to a friend’s house or the basement? Go ahead, it’s a fast peel off and later another peel on. Without leaving a mark to indicate what was there.
Turn Me On
Eclipse is amplified so there’s a small tin-shaped attachment that rides the coaxial cable going from the antenna to attach to the TV. Power comes from an AC plug connected to the amplifier — yep, an ordinary AC wall outlet supplies the power. Hooked up to the TV’s coaxial input, selecting the Antenna setting means spending a few minutes waiting as the channels that can be acquired are noted by the TV’s electronics. Stop yawning, it’s necessary to do this.
The TV As The Abyss
Eclipse picks up signals over a wide range of 35+ miles thanks to the amplification and there’s enough coaxial cable to place it closer to a window if necessary. But in general if you’re not in the desolate wastelands, you’ll get a good signal; one that brings all the HD goodness complete with 5.1 surround. Free TV is good, but an antenna that doesn’t tear off the paint or leave holes in the wall is even better. Which is why Antennas Direct’s Clearstream Eclipse Amplified Indoor TV Antenna is the one to rule them all.