Feds, Industry Publish Consumer DTV Antenna Guidelines

Two new documents providing guidelines for consumers to get optimum reception from their DTV antennas are now available online.

The guidelines were created together by a number of consumer electronics and TV industry associations and businesses working with the FCC. The Tip Sheet and Advisory provide information on antennas, ranging from where they should be placed to what consumers should look for in buying a new antenna. Some of the information was gleaned from recent work between the FCC and broadcast groups to improve reception post DTV transition, particularly on VHF channels 2-13.

The guidelines are posted at:

The entities participating include:

  • • National Association of Broadcasters
  • • Association for Maximum Service Television (MSTV)
  • • Consumer Electronics Association
  • • Consumer Electronics Retailers Coalition
  • • FCC
  • • Audiovox
  • • Antennas Direct
  • • Channel Master
  • • Winegard

Among the guidelines:

  • • Consumers should make sure their antenna receives all the signals being broadcast in their market. In most places, consumers have both VHF channels 2-13 and UHF channels 14-51 available to them. Therefore, they must make sure their antenna receives both UHF and VHF channels.
  • • Consumers should move indoor antennas away from household electronics—including the TV set—as these devices may interfere with indoor reception. In addition, consumers experiencing reception problems are advised to experiment and reposition their antennas. Indoor antennas should be placed in or near a window, if possible.
  • • To help consumers, the group plans to inform consumers that the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA) has adopted performance specifications for indoor antennas. Antennas meeting or exceeding these specifications will display a logo indicating they meet these recommendations.
  • • The group plans on providing additional outreach to consumers and community groups.

“We have posted on our DTV.gov Website the materials developed by this group representing broadcasters, manufacturers, and retailers working in collaboration with FCC staff,” said William Lake, Chief of the FCC’s Media Bureau. “The guides for use of indoor antennas represent the best advice we have developed so far to help consumers who rely on indoor antennas to get the most out of their DTV equipment.”