The best TV antennas offer free content that's still better than almost any other option today, be it streaming or other media sources. With HD shows, news and sports coming to you from major stations, like ABC, CBS, Fox and NBC, over-the-air (OTA) broadcast TV is free – all you need is a TV and an HDTV antenna. Even the most inexpensive antennas bring you completely free HD TV, making a TV antenna a must-have for cable subscribers and cord cutters alike.
Our TV antenna reviews rely on careful testing and hands-on evaluation to find the best TV antennas available, whether it's a simple unamplified antenna that hangs on the wall, an amplified unit that's set on a shelf, or even a larger outdoor model that pulls in stations from miles away. In every review we examine not only performance, but also the equipment that's included with an antenna, and the ease of setup and use.
What are the best TV antennas?
We've tested and reviewed dozens of models, and found that the best TV antenna is the Mohu ReLeaf HDTV Antenna, thanks to its superb reception, simple non-amplified function, and smart recycled material design.
For a more budget-friendly option that still matches the best TV antennas, the smaller Mohu Leaf Metro is our favorite inexpensive indoor HDTV antenna, delivering plenty of clear channels for less than $20. The ultra-affordable antenna boasts a very compact reversible design that's well-suited to apartments and other city dwellings, where the antenna's 25-mile range is perfect for pulling in local stations.
For another affordable option, we also love the popular 1byone Amplified HDTV Antenna, which is an Amazon best seller thanks to its low price, excellent reception and easy-to-install amplified design.
If you want a discreet amplified antenna to set on the shelf, there's the Mohu Curve 50, which wowed us with it's great performance and stylish design.
For something that can go indoors or outside, our favorite is the Antop AT-800SBS HD Smart Panel, which comes with both a 40-foot cable for outdoor mounting and shorter cables for setting it up in the living room. It even comes with the necessary mounting hardware.
And for the best outdoor unit you can get, there's the Winegard Elite 7550. Even without an amplifier, the weather-proof 70-mile antenna offered great performance, including interference suppression to pull in dozens of clear, watchable channels.
Whatever your specific antenna needs, we've hunted for signals and surfed the channels with every model below (and many more) to find the best TV antenna for you.
The best TV antennas you can buy today
For TV viewer's ready to ditch their cable or satellite bill without giving up local channels, the Mohu Releaf is the best TV antenna for under $40. The simple design makes for easy installation, and since the antenna flap is lighter on one side than the other, it can also blend in with some decor. The 30-mile indoor antenna pulled in an impressive 62 channels in our testing, offering better reception than even some amplified antennas on this list.
Made of recycled packaging and crushed cable boxes, it's also the most eco-friendly HDTV antenna we've seen. They even print the instructions on the box to eliminate the extra waste of an instruction booklet. But the real reason to buy is the combination of a no-fuss design and top-notch performance. It's our favorite unamplified HDTV antenna and the best TV antenna we've reviewed.
Read our full Mohu ReLeaf review.
You can get free TV forever with any antenna we review, but the Mohu Leaf Metro manages to offer solid reception and easy installation for less than $20, making it one of the best TV antennas around. This inexpensive indoor antenna comes with a 10-foot cable and mounting hardware, and has a reversible design that helps it stand out a bit less while it's tacked or velcroed to your wall.
In our testing, the budget-friendly Leaf Metro offered some of the best reception we've seen in a cheap TV antenna, pulling in 31 stations with watchable clarity. The nonamplified design is easy to set up and small enough to not be an eyesore, making it a great choice for dorm rooms and smaller living spaces. If you want the best-performing, most-affordable option for over the air channels, this is it.
See our full Mohu Leaf Metro review.
The Mohu Arc Pro is a stylish amplified indoor antenna with a 50-mile range and an attractive design that stands out in a field of flat, mud flap-inspired competitors. As the follow up to a previous favorite, the discontinued Mohu Curve 50, the Mohu Arc Pro is more than just beautiful. In our reception testing it delivered more watchable channels than most of the models we've tested in recent months.
In addition to pulling in some tough-to-receive stations, the Arc Pro's included vertical stand and elegant curved design will turn heads for all the right reasons, and a built-in signal strength indicator makes it easy to find the optimal position in your home. It also offers signal interference suppression, ensuring that the channels it pulls in are watchable.
Read our full Mohu Arc Pro Indoor HDTV Antenna review.
Sometimes an indoor antenna just won't cut it. When you need an outdoor antenna with excellent reception, the Winegard Elite 7550 is the smart option, and the best TV antenna for outdoor installation. It may cost a little more, but the Winegard Elite 7550 pays dividends, delivering a whopping 73 channels in our tests. Whether you're in a crowded city or a rural community, this outdoor HDTV should get the job done, pulling in more channels with better signal than any indoor model can offer.
If you're having difficulty getting local stations you want — or you just want better, more consistent reception — the Winegard Elite 7550's $120 price tag is worth every penny, pulling in dozens of free channels for less than a month's cable subscription.
Read our full Winegard Elite 7550 Outdoor HDTV Antenna review.
For a simple, indoor antenna that offers everything you need to cut the cord, the 1byone Amplified Indoor HDTV Antenna offers a 50-mile range and included amplifier, all for a fairly reasonable price. With slick packaging and a basic black design, it's not only an Amazon best-seller, it's also one of the best TV antennas we've reviewed.
Measuring just 13.3 x 9.3 inches, the antenna includes everything you need to connect to the TV, with a 10-foot coaxial cable and included adhesive patches for mounting. The simple design and included amplifier delivered dozens of watchable channels, and can plug into any wall outlet or USB port. There's a good reason the 1byone is a top Amazon seller: It performs well and doesn't cost a lot.
Read our full 1byone Amplified Indoor HDTV Antenna review.
How to choose the best TV antenna for you
If you're shopping for a TV antenna, you're in luck, because there's no better option for getting live TV for the lowest price possible: Free! But before you pick up the first TV antenna you see at the store, you want to make sure that you're getting one that will work for you.
We recommend researching beforehand to determine what range of antenna you need, and whether you want an indoor model or an antenna made for outdoor installation. The best place to start is AntennaWeb.org, which lets you enter your address or ZIP code and see what stations are broadcasting in your area, as well as how far away the broadcast towers are.
If you're in or near a city, there's a good chance you can make do with a small indoor antenna, since you'll have several stations within a 10 or 20 mile radius that can be pulled in with a basic indoor antenna. If you're more than 30 miles from your local broadcast tower, you'll want to step up to an amplified model.
Any antenna that's rated for 50 miles or more will either be a large outdoor unit, or come with an amplifier to boost the signal it gets. Whether or not to get an outdoor antenna will largely depend upon the building you're in and the surrounding environment, since obstacles like house walls and even trees can prevent signal from getting through to an indoor antenna.
Non-amplified indoor antennas generally sell for between $20 to $40, but there are plenty of cheap TV antennas that sell for less than $20 that offer acceptable performance. An amplified antenna offers better performance, and will cost between $30 and $100. For the best performance, consider an outdoor antenna, which costs $100 or more.
Worried about future proofing for ATSC 3.0 as it rolls out this year? The good news is that your existing antenna will work, and may even pull in more channels under the new standard. The bad news is that you'll need to buy a new tuner or an ATSC 3.0-equipped TV, and these are only now coming to market.
How we test TV antennas
All of the TV antennas we review are tested in the same location in New York City, an apartment that receives dozens of channels from a variety of broadcasters. Each antenna is connected to a Samsung 4K TV, so the TV tuner remains consistent, and each one is placed in the same position to generate comparable results.
With more than 100 over-the-air channels available in Manhattan, it provides an excellent testing location for antenna reception of any range, with more sensitive, long-range antennas pulling in a higher number of channels. It also gives us a chance to determine the quality of that reception, by seeing whether or not those channels are clear and watchable. The best antennas will pull in more channels, with a higher number of watchable results.
Your experience may differ from our test results. Depending upon how many stations broadcast in you area, and unique geographical impediments to over the air signal – such as mountains – your own channel selection will vary considerably. We encourage antenna shoppers to be aware of what channels are available to them by using an online look-up tool like AntennaWeb.org. We also offer a handy guide to better antenna reception to help you cut the cord more easily.