1Plus Model P010 Indoor HDTV Antenna Review: The Best Budget Antenna

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If you've decided to cut the cord, chances are you were motivated by the financial benefits of such a move. So you probably also want to spend as little as possible on an HDTV antenna. If so, the 1Plus Model P010 is the model you want. It's just $13 (often discounted to a you-can't-lose price of $8.79), and yet it performs well enough to pull in the major stations in most metropolitan areas.

Design: Basic budget

The 1Plus Model P010 indoor antenna is the smallest and least expensive antenna we've tested to date. This non-amplified model, which is rated to pull in stations within a 35-mile radius, is just 8.5 inches by 1.5 inches and flatter than a tortilla. It has a 10-foot cable to connect it to a TV's RF coaxial port and supports 1080p HD TV broadcasts. In short, the 1Plus P010 is as basic and compact an HDTV antenna design as you'll find, making it an excellent choice for frequent travelers or people in dorm rooms.

Performance: Great … for the price

We plugged the 1Plus into our test Samsung KS9000 4K TV, and in an initial scan found 28 channels. There are literally scores of stations in our metropolitan testing area, but generally speaking, it requires a more expensive, powered antenna to pull in 40 or more stations. The Mohu ReLeaf, for example, pulled in more than 40 stations in our tests but costs nearly three times as much as the 1Plus; the powered Holisouse HD antenna received nearly 50 stations, with a similar price differential.

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The 1Plus certainly did well enough for its price. The major networks' local affiliates — CBS, NBC and Fox — came in without major glitches. The sole exception here was ABC, which has proved problematic for many HD antennas in our tests.

Furthermore, all the stations in the initial scan turned out to be watchable, at least in terms of picture quality and signal reception. Whether we were watching Sea Hunt on Light TV or Tavis Smiley on PBS, we found the reception reliable. Demonstrating how reception can vary among antennas, the 1Plus had no problem with local government channels that can be a challenge for some amplified models. All the popular Spanish-language channels, from Telemundo to Telexitos, were also clear and crisp.

Bottom Line

Performance-wise, the 1Plus isn't one of our leaders. However, it receives an overall thumbs up for two principal reasons: size and price. Its small dimensions mean that those who have already ditched cable can pick up the 1Plus as a second antenna to take on the road, perfect for tailgating or for hotel systems that don't carry all the local affiliates. And with this antenna's price of just $13, nearly anyone can give free-over-the-air broadcasts a try before gleefully telling the cable company to take a hike.

John R. Quain

John R. Quain has been reviewing and testing video and audio equipment for more than 20 years. For Tom's Guide, he has reviewed televisions, HDTV antennas, electric bikes, electric cars, as well as other outdoor equipment. He is currently a contributor to The New York Times and the CBS News television program.