Find an ISF Forum Calibrator
Login & Registration
ISF Forum via RSS
Home FAQs Antennas & OTA Reception I Have an Old Antenna on My Roof. Will It Work for Digital TV?
I Have an Old Antenna on My Roof. Will It Work for Digital TV?Written by Clearly Resolved
Tuesday, 22 May 2007
While the signals for digital/HD broadcasts are made up of binary data (zeros and ones), from an end-user perspective, there's nothing special about the antenna required to receive those broadcasts.
As noted above, the actual transmission takes place over the UHF spectrum. That means that if you already have an old UHF-capable antenna on your rooftop or in your attic, there's a good chance that it will receive some, and possibly all, of the available local digital broadcasts. The only way to conclusively determine if that older antenna will carry you into the digital age is to test it.
However, it is possible that in order to maximize signal integrity you might need to upgrade the cable run from an existing antenna to your distribution point(s), especially if the antenna uses the flimsy ribbon-type cable connection. If you need to replace the cable for an existing antenna, RG-6 quad-shield coax is recommended. A 1,000-foot roll of RG-6 quad coax can be purchased for around $75, though it is possible to buy smaller quantities at a higher per-foot cost.