What Is The Best Type Of TV Antenna In Australia? Yagi Or Log Periodic?

Yagi TV Antenna 10 Element

In Australia’s major capital cities, the main transmitter for digital TV signals requires a VHF antenna, in order to receive frequencies that are located in the VHF spectrum.

In terms of what design of outdoor antenna is available for the VHF spectrum in Australia, you are limited to two main options, either (i) a yagi antenna, or (ii) a log periodic. Note that there are also VHF phased array and omni-directional designed antennas available, however, they are very rarely used.

Yagi Antennas

Yagi TV Antenna 10 Element

The Yagi-Uda antenna (“Yagi” for short) is an antenna design that is directional and consists of at least 2 parallel elements (arms), in what they call an end-fire array. They can also have other elements not used to for electrical connectivity, called reflectors and directors.

In short, amongst VHF digital TV antennas available in Australia, yagi antennas are easily recognisable by the fact that the elements are all of approximately equal length. Most commonly in Australia, they will have a minimum of 4 elements and a maximum of 18 elements.

Due to the fact the length of the elements relate inversely to the frequencies which the antenna is designed to receive signals, VHF yagi antennas in Australia are cut to receive channels 6 – 12 (Band 3). Note that when we say ‘channels’ here, we are not referring to the channels you tune in on a TV (e.g. Network 7), but rather the RF frequency channel.

Yagi antennas are designed to receive only a very small, specific range of RF channels. They work very well in a small range of frequencies. Luckily, digital TV signals in Australia are only spread over a small range of frequencies, making yagi antennas a perfect match!

Getting a little more technical, by design they often exhibit very good signal characteristics. Possibly the most important signal characteristic of an antenna is signal gain, and yagi antennas provide the very best option in this regard. In addition, the front to back ratio of a yagi antenna is also normally very good, due to the fact that the reflectors and directors block many unwanted signals. This contributes to the antenna receiving a signal with very strong signal strength as well as very high signal quality.  

Log Periodic Antennas

Log Periodic TV Antenna

The Log Periodic Directional Antenna (“LPDA” for short) is an antenna design that is directional and consists of elements of varying lengths. It is designed to receive a very wide range of frequencies but as a result will have low gain.

Compared to a yagi, which will have all elements the same length, LPDAs will have a large number of pairs of elements that have an equal length. You can think of this as though each pair of elements (that are the same length) are a separate antenna, and so each additional pair of elements will simply add a new separate antenna that receives a different frequency range.

Large “log” antennas can receive a very wide range of frequencies and in Australia, most log periodic antennas will receive VHF and UHF frequencies.

Unlike yagi antennas, where additional elements result in higher gain, with LPDAs, more elements result in the antenna being able to receive a wider range of signals. It will not normally result in a better quality or stronger signal.

On the technical side of things, LPDAs will have a very wide frequency range, however will lack in some key characteristics. LPDAs will have low signal gain (the most important signal characteristic of an antenna), and will also have a relatively weak front to back ratio

The Winner Is...

In short, a yagi antenna wins hands down for VHF digital TV signals in Australia.

If you are comparing the two designs, LPDAs really only have 2 elements dedicated to grab the VHF signals you are trying to receive. Whereas yagi antennas will have a minimum of 4 elements (and anywhere up to 18 elements) dedicated to grabbing those same signals.

LPDA antennas fundamentally work in a completely different way to yagis. Adding elements to a yagi increases its directionality, or gain, while adding elements to a LPDA increases its frequency response, or bandwidth. 

This points to the one reason why an inexperienced TV antenna installer may use an LPDA. It is normally able to receive both VHF and UHF frequencies.

If an inexperienced TV antenna installer doesn’t know which signal is available in a ‘fringe’ area, he or she can use a log periodic antenna to receive either one! 

However, remember that in 99% of cases, the correct yagi antenna will receive a far better signal than a log periodic antenna (for both signal strength and signal quality).

Other Considerations

Apart from design, there are a number of other important considerations you should take into account when selecting an antenna.

If you want to get a little more technical, you should read our article on TV antennas used in Sydney. This provides more background on additional technical considerations, including built-in filters.

In addition, for outdoor antennas, you should always take into account the durability of the antenna

It is a device that will be outside for many years. It will be exposed to the often harsh Australian environment, including very hot weather, wind, rain, hail and electrical storms. Not to mention the cockatoos and other birds!

In our experience, a strong, durable antenna will last decades, whereas a flimsy antenna will normally last a few years. It is for this reason that we always recommend and install Australian made antennas only. They are manufactured by companies that have Australia (and its environment) at the front of their minds when considering design and quality control.

In recent years, there have been a flood of poorly manufactured, overseas made log periodic antennas hit the Australian TV antenna market. They are the cheapest option available to TV antenna installers (often costing as little as $15-$20) and often fail due to elements that are easily bent by birds simply landing on them once. They are yet to stand the test of time to see if they would last 25 years or more and we have replaced many (“new” ones) in recent years.


Having been established in 1981, the team at Nu Life TV have over 40 years experience in installing TV antennas in Australia. We are Australia’s longest serving TV antenna company and over the years, we have seen what works and what doesn’t work. 

Our advice is, don’t fall for the hype of a cheap international log periodic. Stick to the tried and tested Australian made yagi antenna for VHF signals in Australia. 

What Is The Best Indoor TV Antenna for Australia (2021)

Matchmaster Indoor TV Antenna

So, you might live in an apartment block near your local transmitter that doesn’t have Free To Air TV reception cabling. Or, you might not be able to afford an outdoor TV antenna installed on your rooftop.

Whatever the reason, you are looking for the best indoor TV antenna for free to air TV reception in Australia. 

Whilst indoor TV antennas aren’t very reliable at all at receiving TV reception in Australia, you might want to give it a try to see if you get one or two channels. You never know, you might be lucky and get all of the channels if you’re in the right area.

Indoor TV Antenna Features

So, if an outdoor TV antenna isn’t for you, these are the features you should be looking out for if you want to purchase an indoor TV antenna.

  • Is it designed to receive UHF or VHF signals? Make sure the indoor antenna is designed to receive whichever signals are being broadcast from your local transmitter. As a general rule of thumb, if you are in the metro area of a capital city, you are probably receiving VHF frequencies, otherwise, you are probably getting UHF signals.
  • Does it have a 4G / 5G filter? Given the increase in 4G frequencies being broadcast throughout Australia, and with the introduction of 5G frequencies (some re-farmed from the 4G spectrum), you will want to have a 4G / 5G filter built into the antenna wherever possible. 
  • Is it amplified or not? Beware of built-in amplifiers for indoor TV antennas. They can cause all sorts of problems. Whilst they might work on occasion, we would recommend you don’t get an amplified indoor TV antenna. If the amplifier increases the signal too much, then it will overload your TV tuner and won’t give you any channels. Alternatively, if the booster doesn’t have an LTE filter, then those unwanted signals (unfiltered) might overload the built-in amplifier and ruin the signal quality going to your TV. Finally, if you aren’t getting good reception quality where you place the indoor antenna, the amplifier simply won’t work (you need good signal power and good signal quality to get your TV channels and an amplifier only boosts signal power).
  • What looks good? Let’s be honest, the last thing you want on top of your new flat screen TV is an ugly set of bunny rabbit ears. Something that is aesthetically pleasing will probably be important to your decision.

So Which Is The Best Indoor TV Antenna?

So, you’re looking for the best indoor TV antenna for Australia. The best one we can find is the Matchmaster 01MM-CA02. Matchmaster are a great Australian company with a 75 year history (they know their stuff!). In terms of the other info, we have listed a few points below:
  • It is actually designed to receive both UHF and VHF signals, so it won’t matter where you are based in Australia, this indoor antenna will is suited to the signals in your area.
  • It has a 4G / 5G filter! In fact it has a 694MHz low pass filter to get rid of as much of those mobile phone signals as possible.
  • It is not amplified, so you won’t run into any of those potential issues.
  • It has a sleek black design which means it fits in with most flat screen TVs and TV cabinets (it looks similar to some sound bars available on the market).

If you try an indoor TV antenna and realise you are still experiencing problems, feel free to contact one of our friendly staff members at Nu Life TV Antenna to provide you a free onsite quotation to install a new outdoor TV antenna. We guarantee 100% perfect digital TV reception and have 40 years experience in getting people their free to air TV reception back! 

Do You Need a TV Antenna Repair or TV Repair?

TV Antenna Repair No Signal

TV Signal, TV Tuner or TV Screen

In order for you to watch your free to air television channels the way they are meant to be watched, you need the following:

  • TV Signal: the TV signal (power and quality levels) need to be at the right levels when they run down your flylead (the cable from the wall to your television) and plug into the back of your TV.
  • TV Tuner: the TV tuner built into your television is a crucial part of the puzzle. It grabs the particular TV signal for the channel you are watching, eliminates the noise, and processes the signal into pixels (picture) and noises (sound). Since analogue TV signals were turned off in Australia over a decade ago, it is important that this TV tuner is in fact a digital TV tuner, otherwise, it won’t work!
  • TV Screen: the TV screen (and speakers) also need to be working in order for your to see each and every last pixel and so you get the full picture without fault. Similarly, the speakers in your TV need to be working so you can hear the audio transmission coming from the digital TV tuner.

Indicators That You Need TV Antenna Repairs

Without getting an TV antenna technician and/or a TV repair technician out to your premises to test these crucial parts of your TV antenna system, here are a few indicators that likely mean that the issue lies with your TV antenna.

  • There is a message on your TV screen that reads ‘No Signal’.
  • You have performed an auto-tune of your TV to search for all local digital terrestrial signals and the TV has not picked up any channels.

If you experience any of these issues, it is likely that you need TV antenna repairs, an antenna man (or woman!) to fix your TV antenna system, or a new digital TV antenna installed.

These symptoms may also mean that it is your TV tuner that is at fault. In order to rule this out, you can do one of the following:

  • Try a different television at the same TV point (it is unlikely that 2x TV tuners on 2x different TVs will go faulty at the same time).
  • Buy a digital DVB-T (terrestrial) set top box, which contains a TV tuner (separate of the TV).

Indicators That You Need A TV Repair

On the other hand, the below indicators may mean that your TV is faulty and you may need a TV repair, or perhaps it is time to buy a new TV.

  • Some horizontal lines on the screen are working perfectly (perhaps the top half) and other lines on the screen aren’t working.
  • Some pixels (dots) on the screen are black, or faded and never show any colour or part of the image.
  • You can tune into and change each TV channel, and the sound (audio) is working perfectly, but the picture isn’t showing.
  • You can tune into and change each TV channel, and the picture is working perfectly, but the sound (audio) isn’t working at all.
  • Your TV doesn’t turn on.

If you get any of the items mentioned above, it is likely that you will need to repair your TV, or buy a new TV, rather than get a new TV antenna installation.

After reading this article, if you are convinced that you have a fault with your TV antenna, feel free to give us a call on 9549 0082 and we will provide you with a free onsite quotation to resolve all your TV reception issues.

What Digital TV Channels Are Available In Sydney In 2021?

Digital TV Channels

What Digital TV Channels Are Available In Sydney?

If you have completed an auto-tune on your TV, you should be able to receive all 35 of the following Digital TV Channels for free off your TV antenna.

List of Sydney's Digital TV Channels

Nine Entertainment Co.:

  • 9
  • 9HD
  • 9GEM
  • 9GO
  • 9Life
  • 9GEM HD
  • RUSH
  • Extra

Ten Network Holdings:

  • 10
  • 10 HD
  • 10 Peach
  • 10 Bold
  • 10 Shake
  • TVSN
  • Spree TV

Seven West Media:

  • Seven
  • 7 HD
  • 7 TWO
  • 7 mate
  • 7 mate HD
  • Open Shop
  • 7 flix
  • Racing.com

Australian Broadcasting Corporation:

  • ABC TV
  • ABC TV Plus
  • ABC Kids
  • ABC ME
  • ABC News

Special Broadcasting Service:

  • SBS
  • SBS HD
  • SBS Viceland
  • SBS World Movies
  • SBS Food
  • NITV
If you aren’t receiving all of these channels from the main Sydney transmitter, feel free to call us for a no obligation quote to look into your antenna system and get you all those channels up and running.

Extra Channel - Sky News on WIN

If you are lucky enough to be in an area of Sydney that receives a UHF transmission from the TV transmitter in Wollongong, you can also install a separate UHF antenna to receive Sky News on WIN.

Other Cities and Regional Areas

Remember that the channels you receive may differ, depending on which TV transmitter your antenna is point at. For a more detailed list of other capital cities and regional digital TV channels available in your local area, check them out here.

Please note that this information is correct as of January 2021. There are often new channels added or existing channels changed, which may not be reflected above.

What Is The Best TV Antenna in Australia?

TV Antennae

The Best Digital TV Antenna in Australia For You

If you have bad TV reception and are looking into upgrading your TV antenna system, you might be searching for a top 10 list of the best indoor or outdoor TV antennas in Australia.

However, as your search might show, this is hard to find for one simple reason. There is no ‘best’ digital TV antenna for free to air TV reception in Australia.

There are definitely different grades of quality when it comes to TV antennas available in Australia (read more about TV antennas), but the best TV antenna for you and your specific requirements depends on a number of factors. 

We provide a brief overview of the most important factors in this articles, but please click the link above to learn more about TV antennas to help you select the best one for you.

Indoor or Outdoor Antenna?

This decision will most likely be one of budget. If you are looking for a quick, cheap, ‘hope for the best’ type of option, you can try an indoor TV antenna. However, don’t be surprised if only a few of the channels come through (or even none at all).

There may also be a situation where your apartment building doesn’t have free to air TV cabling into each unit, so you may be left with the only option being an indoor TV antenna.

Read more on whether or not indoor TV antennas work.

Indoor antennas are normally a lot less expensive than outdoor antennas. A very good quality one, like the Matchmaster 01MM-CA02 will often have a stylish design and not look out of place next to your TV or soundbar. You should probably avoid the ones available online only or through traditional retailers – they are normally generic overseas ones that are for use in any country in the world (not really designed just for Australia). Learn more about the best indoor TV antenna in Australia.

The Best Outdoor TV Antenna

Well, where do we start?

You will need to take into account your specific location (suburb), the height of your roof, the coverage and signal quality in your area, and a few other factors to determine which is the best outdoor TV antenna for you.

Here are just a few things you will need to look out for:

  • Are the TV signals in your area on VHF or UHF frequency? If UHF, then what Band does your transmitter use?
  • Do you need a high gain or low gain antenna?
  • Is signal quality poor in your area? If so, you will need an antenna with better receiving characteristics to ensure your MER signal reading is a Pass. If you require higher quality, then you will likely need a bigger antenna (more elements), and one that is narrowband (not a log periodic antenna or combination antenna) to help reduce noise levels. 
  • Directional or omni-directional? This is a little more rare, but omni-directional TV antennas can be used for caravans and moving vehicles.
To compare the cost of an indoor antenna vs an outdoor antenna, read more about outdoor TV antenna installation cost in Sydney.

If you think you have got a handle on all of that, then it is best to stick to a high quality, Australian made antenna.

For an overview of which type of design of TV antenna you should consider for VHF digital TV signals in Australia, read our article dedicated to “What Is The Best Type Of TV Antenna In Australia?“.

However, if you would like a specialist TV antenna man to visit your residence to provide you with a free quote on how to get your TV channels back on the screen, contact one of our friendly staff on 02 9549 0082.

TV Antenna Installation Cost in Sydney

TV Wall Mounting Cost

Digital TV Antenna Installation Cost in Sydney

In most areas of Sydney, the cost to buy and install a new digital TV antenna usually ranges between $300-$700.

However, let’s dig into this a little deeper to understand why there is quite a large price range and what factors will contribute to you getting a lower or higher price for your TV antenna installation.

What Determines The Cost of A Digital TV Antenna Installation?

The following factors will contribute to the price of getting your TV reception fixed with a new digital TV antenna installation: 

  1. Type and Quality of Digital TV Antenna: this is the majority of the cost when you are purchasing the supply and installation of a new TV antenna at your premises. Firstly, it must be the right type of antenna for your local area. Secondly, the quality of digital TV antennas available in Australia can vary significantly. Some ‘cheap’ digital TV antennas (often log periodic antennas) can be purchased for as low as $15 or $20. These antennas will be lucky to last one Summer storm in Sydney. You want to get a durable, heavy duty, Australian made, digital TV antenna – designed and built for Australia’s TV signals and harsh climate.
  2. Requirement to Install a TV Booster or Amplifier: if you are required to install a TV signal booster in addition to your TV antenna, this can increase the cost of your TV antenna system. A booster can be required if you are in a poor signal area, or if you have a large number of TV points in your TV system.
  3. Time Required to Install Equipment: quite simply, the amount of labour required to install the required equipment will contribute to the cost of the installation. For example, if it takes longer to install a new antenna because you also need to install and set up a TV booster, then the cost will be higher, rather than lower.
  4. Experience and Workmanship: whilst some task based marketplace websites may be able to introduce you to a handyman to install your TV antenna, you will pay a slightly higher price for a qualified and experienced TV antenna installation expert, who takes pride in his trade and workmanship.
  5. Replacement of Existing Antenna Mount: the life of a good quality antenna is roughly 20-25 years. In some parts of Sydney (including the coastal regions near saltwater), the mount holding up your TV antenna may well rust out in just a few short years. Every day we see antennas that become damaged due to strong winds that have broken a rusted mount. For this reason, you may sometimes want to consider replacing your antenna mount at the same time as your TV antenna (if it has been up there for a long time).
  6. High Mast or Extendable Telomast Required: if your TV antenna is being held up using a 15 foot mast or extendable telomast (we install anywhere from a 20 to a 50 foot mast), then the cost to have a new TV antenna installed will be higher. Any job that requires work on a 20 foot mast or higher needs to involve 2 men for safety reasons, and it can sometimes take a whole day to install a 50 foot mast.
  7. Access To The Antenna: on very rare occasions, your antenna may only be accessible by the use of special equipment like an EWP (Elevated Work Platform). Our technicians usually have a few neat tricks to access the antenna when others cannot, so luckily we have only been required to use an EWP on a handful of occasions in the last few years.

Selecting A Quote For A Digital TV Antenna Installation

For a trusted, reliable digital TV antenna installation service, you will want to select a company that has been established and operating for a long period of time in your local area. 

We field many customer enquiries from customers who have previously purchased a new antenna from a DIY supplier, or had a small ‘part-timer’ or electrician install a ‘cheap’ antenna, only to have it fail within a few weeks. Many small, single person businesses with little concern for their reputation will often not return phone calls and the advertised warranty becomes instantly meaningless.

Nu Life TV Antenna has been fixing TV reception for 40 years and is committed to providing 100% perfect digital TV reception to each and every one of our valued customers.

So, whilst our customers sometimes get a slightly cheaper quote, we stand by our commitment to provide the very best value, using only the best Australian made digital TV antennas available on the market.

TV Antenna Installation Bondi – 15ft Mast

15ft Mast Installation Bondi - Antenna

Today, we are looking at a fairly straightforward TV Antenna Installation in Bondi, using a 15 foot guyed mast. The customer previously had their old TV antenna guyed mast rust out and subsequently fall onto their roof. Thankfully it didn’t do any significant damage to the roof, however, it is a good warning to those of you who have a rusted mast on top of your rooftop!

Before Installation

15ft Mast Installation Bondi - Before

All masts and mounts are normally exposed to the elements. Particularly in areas that are close to saltwater, there is damage to masts and mounts that results in rusting of equipment. As a general rule, large masts like this one (or larger) should be checked every 12-24 months, as rusting can sometimes result in catastrophic outcomes.

Thankfully, in this case, whilst the 15 foot mast fell over, there was no significant damage to the customer’s roof. However, in the past, we have seen mast swing off rooftops and into windows below, or sometimes even hit cars or other objects next to the house.

Our customer was lucky in this case, and we were able to install a brand new shiny 15 foot mast with a VHF antenna directed straight to the Artarmon transmitter.

New TV Antenna Installed on 15 Foot Guyed Mast

15ft Mast TV Antenna Installation Bondi

Looking much better! This TV antenna installation in Bondi is completed with a new VHF antenna, a new 15 foot mast, new guy wire, turnbuckles, base plate, lock ring, thimbles and all the other little bits and pieces required to complete the installation.

We have a very happy customer with perfect digital TV reception!

If you require a TV Antenna installation in Bondi using a 15 foot mast, or any other type of mast or mount, feel free to give us a call or send an email outlining your requirements and we will provide you with the various options available to suit your needs.

TV Antenna Sydney

TV Antenna Sydney

It should come as no surprise that the most important piece of equipment in any TV antenna system is the TV Antenna itself! In our guide outlining the 10 Steps to Perfect TV Reception in Sydney, it is the first step listed in order for you to get your TV back to picture perfect.

What Frequency Band - VHF, UHF or Combination?

All antennas are ‘cut’ or tuned for different frequencies. You can get antennas that are used for enhancing 3G or 4G mobile phone reception, antennas for FM or DAB radio, GPS antennas and of course TV antennas. Each of those types of signals are all broadcast on different frequencies. 

VHF (very high frequency) bands, which are from 30 to 300 megahertz (MHz), are used for TV signals to be broadcast on the main transmission towers in Sydney, which are located in Artarmon.

UHF (ultra high frequency) bands, which are a large range between 300 megahertz (MHz) and 3 gigahertz (GHz), are also used for TV signals in Sydney, however, these are broadcast (sent) from different transmission towers that are located in hard-to-reach areas. Basically, wherever the main VHF TV signals cannot reach, the Government has kindly organised for new transmissions on other towers to make sure everyone in Sydney can still get a reliable TV signal. The location of these UHF towers in Sydney are as follows:

  • Kings Cross servicing Kings Cross, Sydney CBD and Eastern Suburbs
  • Manly servicing Manly and Mosman
  • Razorback Range servicing South West Sydney
  • Kurrajong Heights servicing the North West Sydney
  • Bouddi servicing Bouddi
  • Woronora servicing Woronora
If you are close to one of these areas, then you might get a better incoming TV signal on UHF rather than VHF frequency bands. This should always be tested onsite, however, the Australian Government’s MySwitch website may provide some assistance in determining what is right for you.

From there it is simple, if the best TV signal in your local area is broadcast on VHF frequencies, buy a VHF antenna. If the best signal is on UHF frequencies, buy a UHF antenna.

Oh and just to cover them off, combination antennas are antennas that receive both VHF and UHF frequencies. They are often used by installers who do not know how TV signals work and so they can be used in a wider range of situations to ‘guess’ which direction the signal comes from. There are only a few rare scenarios in which a combination TV antenna should be used, and quite often they result in a poor quality signal, can introduce interference into your TV antenna system and cause other issues. Overall, they are more harm than good. 

Low Gain or High Gain?

A TV Antennas ‘gain’ or ‘power gain’ describes how well the antenna converts radio waves arriving from a specified direction into electrical power. This is very important to introduce a strong signal power straight off the antenna. Sometimes, if a high gain antenna is used over a low gain antenna, there can be enough signal power straight off the antenna to avoid needing to install other devices, like a TV Antenna Booster or other amplification devices.

It is often the case that antennas with only very few elements (arms) will be low gain, and high gain antennas will have many elements (up to 18 elements for a very high gain VHF antenna). A top quality high gain antenna should deliver you a minimum of 10db gain (on VHF) and some will get you 14db gain or greater!

UHF Antennas - Yagi or Phased Array?

UHF Antennas generally come in 2 shapes, being a Yagi or Phased Array. A yagi is the more traditional long, narrow antenna (used for VHF antennas), whilst a phased array TV antenna looks like a square mesh board with diagonal metal patterns.

A yagi antenna should be your go-to UHF antenna under normal circumstances. It will provide higher gain and a better quality signal under circumstances where your line of sight (LOS) to the transmission tower is relatively clear.

If the LOS from your rooftop to the transmission tower is terrible, and there are a lot of hills and valleys along the way, then your best bet may be to install a UHF phased array TV antenna. These antennas are better at picking up ‘scattered’ signals which become scattered due to the radio waves bouncing off hills, trees, bushes, and other objects before they get to your rooftop. Phased array antennas are a higher cost antenna than yagi antennas, so you are best to have a signal survey from your rooftop to determine which is the best in your local area.

Front to Back Ratio

The Front to Back Ratio of any antenna is the ratio of the signal power received from the front of the antenna compared to the signal power received in the opposite direction.

Whilst some may not look like it, antennas have a front and a back and it is crucially important that you do not turn them around 180 degrees to have them facing the opposite direction. However, if you were to do so, and you had a bad antenna with a low front to back ratio, there is a very slim chance it might still work for you! 

However, the best TV antennas will have a high front to back ratio, and this is why. If an antenna can receive a signal from the wrong direction, it will introduce ‘noise’ and unwanted signals into your TV antenna system. Because we know that we only want signal coming from the TV transmission tower, we ideally want to completely block out as much other noise as possible. A high front to back ratio will mean that we get lots of good TV signal from the front, and minimal unwanted radiowaves from the back.

Built-in Filters

Depending on your location and proximity to telecommunications towers, you may suffer from strong 4G (LTE) mobile phone signals in your area. Whilst this might be great for making mobile phone calls and watching 4K movies on your iPhone, unfortunately, this can result in interference to your TV antenna signals.

There are a number of stages in which you can ‘filter’ out the unwanted 4G signals. You can have an in-line 4G filter (separate device), a 4G filter built in to your TV antenna booster, or you can eliminate the 4G signal at the source and buy an antenna that has a 4G filter built-in. Note that in some cases, you may require more than one device to filter the 4G signal as it can be very strong in some areas and cause a lot of interference issues for your TV signal.

In summary, there are a number of different attributes that you should look out for when selecting a TV antenna in Sydney. No matter which attributes you decide, there is also the build quality that you should definitely take into account. Australian made TV antennas are generally made out of higher grade aluminium, as compared to some international antennas, and have a more rigid construction. You can rest assured knowing that they are designed and made for Australian frequencies and Australia’s harsh and varying climate. It’s for this reason that many Aussie made antennas come with a 25 year warranty… they are built to last!

10 Steps To A Perfect Digital TV Antenna Installation in Sydney

10 Steps to Perfect TV Reception in Sydney

So the Free To Air TV reception at your house in Sydney has suddenly gone bad. The picture has started pixelating, it then skips a frame every now and then, and the audio is constantly breaking up. There is something wrong with your TV antenna system.

10 Steps to A Perfect Digital TV Antenna Installation in Sydney

In order to get your digital TV reception back up and running again, there are the following 10 steps you need for your digital TV antenna installation in Sydney to get that picture and audio back to perfect again.

1. The Right TV Antenna

The most important part of any residential TV antenna system is the TV antenna itself. If you are based in Sydney, you will need to check whether or not you need a VHF (Very High Frequency) or UHF (Ultra High Frequency) antenna. This will depend on which TV transmitter gives the best signal in your local area. For a large part of Sydney, this will mean getting a VHF antenna and pointing it towards Artarmon in Sydney’s North. But if you are on the outskirts, or in a hilly area, there may be a different TV transmitter that provides better reception.

In addition, no matter if you pointing at a VHF or UHF transmitter, there are many different designs and sizes of antenna that will receive the signal better than others. For TV reception, the most critical design element is the antenna’s ‘gain’. A high gain antenna will receive a stronger signal power and a better quality signal than a low gain antenna. You may also get an antenna with some degree of 4G or 5G filter built-in to assist in reducing noise or interference (see more details below).

For more information, visit our more detailed look into how to choose the right TV antenna in Sydney.

2. The TV Antenna Mount or Mast and Antenna Alignment

The type of antenna mount you use can actually improve the quality of your reception due to one important factor – height. The height of antenna mount can make a HUGE difference to the signal quality and power you receive at your TV and is often the difference between having some reception or no reception. In some areas, where you have line of sight to the nearby signal transmitter, you will only need a short ~1.4m tin or tile roof mount. In other situations, you may need a 15ft guyed masted, or even up to a 50ft guyed mast. Yes, we still install 50ft (~15m) guyed mast on the top of 1 or 2 storey buildings. This can mean up to 70ft above ground level! Thankfully, with digital TV signals, this isn’t required nearly as much as back in the days of analogue TV.

In addition to the type of antenna mount, you will also need to consider the alignment of the antenna (to ensure it is pointing towards your desired transmitter) and placement of the antenna mount on your rooftop. There may be trees or foliage (or other tall buildings) you will want to avoid, whilst trying to get to the highest point on the roof for the most reliable signal.

3. TV Antenna Booster (with 4G Filter)

Whether you have a VHF or UHF antenna, depending on your location, building height, number of TV outlets and type/length of cable runs, you may need a TV antenna booster

Digital TV signal has two main components: (i) signal power; and (ii) signal quality. Whilst signal power can be adjusted with the assistance of a TV antenna booster (also called an antenna amplifier or TV signal booster), you cannot improve signal quality with any similar device. 

Signal quality will be primarily determined at the antenna (type and location of the antenna). If you are experiencing poor signal quality, you will likely need to replace the antenna with a better one or relocate the antenna to a different location (normally higher) in order for it to receive more signal.

Signal power, on the other hand, can be increased with a TV antenna booster, or decreased with an attenuator. Signal power decreased for a number of reasons. You may be in a poor signal area (a long distance from the transmitter), have a large hill between your house and the transmitter, be splitting the signal between a number of TV outlets in your house, be using old high-loss cable, have long cable runs, or something else. There are many factors that contribute to signal loss in a TV system that results in the need to use a antenna booster to amplify the signal.

When using a TV antenna booster, there are 2 main things to lookout for. 

The first is that you do not want to overload the signal (by turning the amplifier up too high). TV tuners can only process signal when it is received within a specific signal power decibel (db) band. The TV tuner will not work with a signal power level that is too low, and will also not work with a signal power level that is too high!

The second warning is that a TV antenna booster does not know which signals are used for TV channels, as compared to AM radio, 4G mobile phone signals, or any other RF signal. As a result, it is important that you are not amplifying unwanted 4G signals that can cause interference with the TV signals which we want to isolate. As a result, many TV antenna boosters these days have in-built 4G / LTE filters.   

4. Lead-in Cable

The lead-in cable connects the antenna to the next device in your TV system, which is normally an antenna splitter located in your roofspace. The lead-in cable should be of the highest quality as it needs to keep signal levels as high as possible, and also needs to be weather (sun and rain) resistant.

As a result, we recommend the use of 50ohm quad shield RG6 or RG11 cable only. Four layers of shielding is the premium standard for TV cabling in Australia and ensures protection from the elements, but also ensures that there is no other unwanted RF signals entering our cable and causing interference.

5. High Isolation RF Splitter

The antenna splitter may look like a standard device, but beware of the small but subtle differences between the types of splitters available. The first important feature is the frequency able to be passed through the splitter. Whilst Free To Air TV reception (VHF and UHF) all sit below 850Mhz, if you need your Foxtel reception to pass through the splitter, you may have to increase the quality of your splitter to pass up to 2400Mhz. In addition, you will want to look out for high isolation splitters, as they will result in one port of the splitter not having any impact on other ports, which can cause issues that are sometimes very difficult to locate.

Splitters come in various sizes, from a simple 2way splitter up to an 8way splitter. They can be ‘daisy-chained’ so as to serve more than 8 TV outlets from the one antenna, however, each time you split the signal, you lose signal power. So, in a system where the signal has been split, there is a greater chance of requiring a TV antenna booster in order to return the signal power back to a level that can be used by your TV tuner.

Finally, splitters can have certain ports that are ‘power pass’. This means that a small electrical current can be passed from the TV outlet up the TV cable to any booster that is normally located near the antenna. Boosters need power to operate, and so without the coaxial cable allowing electricity to pass through, and without a splitter that has ‘power pass’ ports, there is sometimes no way to get it powered up.    

6. Outlet Cabling

Outlet cabling runs from your splitter to the TV outlet or wall plate. Depending on the type of cable used, there are maximum distances that the signal power level will remain in tact before it becomes too low to work. If there is a very long cable run, you will need RG11 cable, otherwise, we recommend the use of a high quality quad-shield RG6 cable.

7. Wall Plates

Wall plates screw onto the wall (much like a power point) and allow you to plug in a short patch or fly lead from the TV to the wall. Wall plates don’t look like much, but comprise of a C-clip, the wall plate itself, a cover plate and a mechanism. They can come in a variety of colours and styles, so you can have a ‘double gang’ or ‘triple gang’ if you want more than one TV point in the one location, or you want to also have a data point on the same wall plate.

8. TV Booster Power Supply

TV boosters require power to operate – ie they are an ‘active’ device. Thankfully, we have a way to get power to them without placing a power point on your rooftop!

The coaxial cable that we install to send the signal from the antenna to your wall plate is actually capable of sending a very low electrical current in the opposite direction! The TV booster power injector and power supply is the device that ‘injects’ power into the cable and sends that power (normally 13V or 18V) up the coaxial cable, all the way up to your TV booster. As you already know, this will only work properly if you have a splitter with a ‘power pass’ port on the right cable!

9. TV Fly Leads

A TV fly lead is the short piece of cable that connects your TV to the TV wall plate. It should not be underestimated in terms of its importance, and we have had many situations in the past where a poor quality fly lead has caused many issues. 

The first thing to look out for are that the fly lead is made of high quality cable. Again, we recommend the use of quad-shield RG6 cable.

Secondly, you will not want the fly lead to be very long, or have many joins in the cable. Given fly leads can sometimes be very low quality (especially those that come with the TV or that you can buy in your local electronics shop), you will want to make this cable as short as possible (no more than a few metres).

10. TV Tuner

The final piece of the puzzle to ensure you get perfect digital TV reception is the TV tuner that sits inside your TV or set-top box. Whilst there are situations where you have a perfect digital TV signal at the end of your TV fly lead, if the TV tuner in your TV is faulty or broken entirely, then you will not receive a reliable video/audio experience. 

Unfortunately, with TV repairers few and far between, this means you can either buy a TV set-top box to perform the TV tuner function on behalf of your TV, or you will have to buy a whole new TV!

So, there you have it – 10 steps to get perfect digital TV reception in Sydney. We hope this helps for anyone trying to get their TV reception back up and running. 

If you are still experiencing issues, feel free to give the Nu Life TV Antenna team a call to organise an experienced technician to attend to your premises for a free quote to fix your system.

Please note that this was intended for a small residential TV system, and in larger apartment complexes, and with Foxtel installations, there are many more factors at play and there may be additional parts and equipment required to get you back watching TV again.

Digital TV Tuning Frequencies In Sydney

Manual Digital TV Tuning Sydney

In order for your digital TV tuner to display picture and audio on your TV, it needs to be tuned in to digital TV signals that get broadcast from a nearby TV transmitter. In Sydney, there are 4 main transmitters that can be used. Those transmitters are located at:

  • Artarmon (VHF; main Sydney transmitter)
  • Kings Cross (UHF)
  • Kurrajong (UHF)
  • Wollongong (UHF)

Digital TV Auto Tuning

Most TVs have an ‘auto-tune’ function which will mean the TV will do all the hard work for you and search for all DTV signals (and also FM radio signals that are being received by your antenna). However, if that is causing you issues (perhaps it is tuning in the wrong channels from the wrong transmitter by mistake), then the manual digital TV tuning option is the one to select.

Digital TV Manual Tuning in Sydney

If you are having issues with your TV’s auto tuning option, and have decided to try manual TV tuning, then here are the frequencies and bands you will need to select.

The first step, however, is to check what type of antenna you have got on your roof. Digital TV antennas in Sydney are designed to be either:

  • VHF only (Very High Frequency). These digital antennas have longer elements (arms).
  • UHF only (Ultra High Frequency). These digital antennas have shorter elements (arms), and often have more elements than VHF antennas.
  • Combination (VHF and UHF). These digital antennas have both short and long elements (arms).

Once you have discovered what type of antenna you have got, you will need to ensure it is pointing to the right transmitter (match it up with the transmitters listed above). 

OK, so you know you have a VHF antenna pointed to a VHF transmitter (or a UHF antenna pointed to a UHF transmitter). Now it is time to start the manual tuning.

Digital TV Manual Tuning Frequencies in Sydney

Manual tuning ensures that your TV tuner is ‘looking at’ the frequency wave bands that are carrying the TV channels that you want to watch.

So, let’s take a look at what those frequencies are for each Free To Air Digital TV Channel at Sydney’s TV transmitters.

Digital TV Manual Tuning Frequencies - Artarmon (VHF)

NetworkServiceFrequencyVHF/UHF Channel (Band)
Seven NetworkATN177.5 MHz6
Nine NetworkTCN191.625 MHz8
Network TenTEN219.5 MHz11
ABCABC226.5 MHz12
SBSSBS184.5 MHz7
Community TelevisionTSN536.5 MHz29

Digital TV Manual Tuning Frequencies - Kings Cross (UHF)

NetworkServiceFrequencyVHF/UHF Channel (Band)
Seven NetworkATN529.5 MHz28
Nine NetworkTCN564.5 MHz33
Network TenTEN550.5 MHz31
ABCABC543.5 MHz30
SBSSBS557.5 MHz32

Digital TV Manual Tuning Frequencies - Wollongong (UHF)

NetworkServiceFrequencyVHF/UHF Channel (Band)
PrimeCBN599.5 MHz38
WINWIN585.5 MHz36
Southern Cross AustereoCTC592.5 MHz37
ABCABC578.5 MHz35
SBSSBS606.5 MHz39

Digital TV Manual Tuning Frequencies - Kurrajong (UHF)

NetworkServiceFrequencyVHF/UHF Channel (Band)
Seven NetworkATN529.5 MHz28
Nine NetworkTCN564.5 MHz33
Network TenTEN550.5 MHz31
ABCABC543.5 MHz30
SBSSBS557.5 MHz32

And that’s about it!

If you are still experiencing issues with your TV reception or want to check to see if you need a new TV antenna installation in Sydney, feel free to get in touch with our team by either submitting a Free Quote Request online, or by calling our friendly call centre staff on 9549 0082!