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New USB or Battery-Powered Portable DTV Antenna Available From Powerq

Regular readers of my RF Technology column in TV Technology know that I travel with an assortment of USB ATSC tuners to check out DTV reception in different cities.

I've found an amplified antenna is often needed in weak signal areas, whether due to concrete or distance, and for VHF DTV reception due to lower antenna gain.

PowerQ is now offering the PowerHD 100 amplified antenna. The complete package measures 6.6x2.2x1.5 inches. The user guide says it works on Channels 2 through 69. Amplifier gain is specified as 15 dB. The PowerHD 100 runs on power from a USB port or two AA batteries.

I originally used an Archer telescoping dipole antenna with built-in preamplifier that was about the size of a transistor radio, but RadioShack discontinued it several years ago. My current favorite is the Artec AN-2A USB-powered amplified flat-panel antenna. It does an excellent job on UHF ands works much better than the whip antennas supplied with many USB ATSC tuners at VHF. I'm tempted to order a PowerHD 100 and give it a try, If any readers have a chance to test it, I'd be interested in hearing how it performs on UHF and VHF.

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Doug Lung is one of America's foremost authorities on broadcast RF technology. He has been with NBC since 1985 and is currently vice president of broadcast technology for NBC/Telemundo stations.