Over the Air (OTA)

Antenna Terminology

AM

A type of frequency used for radio stations. Some OTA TV antennas can also pull in AM signals.

Amplifier (Booster)

An amplifier is a device used in conjunction with an OTA antenna designed to help make up for signal loss due to long runs of cable or splitters.

Bow-Tie

This is a design of antenna typically used for UHF only antennas and is named that because the front of the antenna usually has elements that look like a bow-tie. Typically, these antennas are square, or rectangular in shape, and have a metal mesh screen on the back of them.

Channels 2-6

Not to be mistaken with the channel number on your television, this actually refers to the RF frequency that is used for the Low band VHF frequencies. The RF channel frequency and the actual channel on your television will often be different from one another.

Channels 7-13

Not to be mistaken with the channel number on your television, this actually refers to the RF frequency that is used for the High band VHF frequencies. The RF channel frequency and the actual channel on your television will often be different from one another.

Channels 14-69

Not to be mistaken with the channel number on your television, this actually refers to the RF frequency that is used for the UHF frequencies. The RF channel frequency and the actual channel on your television will often be different from one another.

Coaxial Cable

This is the type of cable used to connect an OTA antenna to your television. This is the same type of cable that satellite and cable companies use. The most popular type used is called RG6 coaxial cable.

Deep Fringe

A term used to describe an antenna that has the ability to pull in OTA stations that are very far away.

Directional

A term used to describe an antenna that is designed for picking up stations in the direction it is pointed at only. These types of antennas usually do not have much more than a 30-50 degree range on a compass.

Low VHF

A category of VHF frequencies that is in regards to RF channels 2-6.

Multi-directional

A term used to describe an antenna that is designed to be able to pick up channels from the direction it is pointed at, and it also has a range of about 50-90 degrees on a compass.

Omni-directional

a term used to describe an antenna that is designed to be able to pick up stations from any direction at the same time without having to rotate it.

OTA

The abbreviation for “Over the Air”

Passive

Antenna with-out Amplifier

Rotator/Rotor

A device used to rotate an antenna in different directions. If your local broadcasts come from different directions a rotator is recommended.

Splitter

A device used to split your signal from your antenna off to multiple televisions. If you plan on splitting your antenna to multiple televisions, you should also purchase an amplifier to make up for signal loss.

Smartpass Amplifier

The smart switch, Smartpass Amplifier is a device that allows an antenna to work as a passive antenna or an active antenna.  This gadget assures an antenna to pick up short range and long range reception with a touch of a switch.

UHF

“Ultra High Frequency” represents the RF frequencies used from 14-69.

UHF/VHF

Used to represent an antenna that can receive both UHF and VHF frequencies.

VHF

“Very High Frequency” represents the RF Frequencies used from 2-13.