DIY Friday: Build Your Own HDTV Antenna

Sure, you just spent $10,000 on a sweet Plasma HDTV Monitor and another $400 on a kick a$$ receiver, but that doesn’t mean you have to break the bank buying a super-expensive HDTV antenna, does it?

Not at all, according to pitman2 over in the Lumenlab 2.1 ("Saving the World from Bad TV") forums, who posted instructions on how to build your very own HD antenna using cardboard, a few hangers, and something called a UHF Matching Transformer. While its not entirely a MacGyver-esque construction (no saliva and papertowel tubes required), it seems to do the job.

"In my un-scientific tests this antenna seems to hold it’s own against the DB2 as an indoor antenna . In outdoor tests it performed almost as well as the DB2. Although I wouldn’t use this one outdoors, being card board and having a solid reflector. One good gust of wind and it’ll fly away. But there is no reason why you can’t build one with higher quality materials to be used outside. Like a cooling rack for a reflector so that it doesn’t catch the wind."

What’s that you say? You haven’t shelled out yet for a new HDTV monitor and receiver yet? You’re waiting for the price of your next generation television to drop below the price of the house your grandparents bought in 1956? Oh, well, have no fear, we hear at RRS have you covered too. Actually, Popular Mechanics has the information, but we’ll link to their how-to on turning your PC into a lean, mean HDTV viewing machine and you can thank us later.

One word of warning on the last bit though: While turning your PC into an HDTV and building your own antenna maybe cheap, explaining to your significant other why you have to watch television under the phosphorescent glow of your computer monitor while coaxial cable from the antenna on the roof dangle overhead… well, that’s priceless.

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  • christmas present says:

    Boy , how much would they cost anyhow? we had Hd on cable but not any more. It’s like swapping your merc for a ford the quality is well worth those diy hours

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