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Today’s Show:

Solid Signal HD Blade

Every time we publish a story about cutting the cord we get a ton of interest. Whether it be a new online service or a new antenna to be used for pulling in free, over-the-air HD signals, our listeners and readers respond with great feedback. So when we found out about a new indoor antenna called the HD Blade (Buy Now $37) we were excited about putting it through its paces.

The HD blade is similar to the Mohu Leaf (read HT Guys review) in shape, both are about the same shape as a mousepad but much much thinner. The HD Blade is a little bigger in size measuring 13 X 11.5 inches.

You may be thinking the same thing we were, “Do we need another paper thin antenna?”. If so, “What makes the HD Blade worth buying?”.  Solid Signal, the makers of the HD Blade, claim that it is one of the most powerful indoor antennas and one of the reason is:

The HD Blade has real silver elements embedded between two thin sheets of industrial grade plastic.   The design of the elements mimic that of a long range outdoor antenna, but for the first time technology has allowed us to print metal elements on to a sheet.

So we compared it to the leaf. Since the HT Guys live about 70 miles away from the TV towers for Los Angeles our tests we performed in Fresno CA. Ara’s in-laws live 20 miles from the TV towers which is right in the sweet spot of the antenna’s performance range.

Performance

Our HD Blade came with a six foot coax cable. And like the leaf it is important that the cable run towards the ground. Solid Signal includes a quick tips pamphlet that helps with placement and positioning of the antenna. We placed the antenna behind the TV, which limits reception but is acceptable to the aesthetics committee, and then we connected the cable to the TV’s antenna jack and hit scan.

For our performance measure we will compare the number of digital channels picked up by HD Blade, Mohu Leaf and Mohu Leaf Plus. The plus is an amplified version of the Mohu Leaf. We reviewed it on Podcast #528 back in April.

Number of Digital Channels Received:

  • Mohu Leaf – 31
  • Mohu Leaf Plus – 38
  • Solid Signal HD Blade – 42

This is an improvement over both leaf antennas. The HD Blade found a few more than the Leaf Plus but it was very close. There may have been other factors involved since these tests were not performed at the same time. Bottom line is we can say that the blade performs as good if not better than the Mohu Leaf Plus at a lower price. Plus the HD Blade does not need amplification so its easier to install.

Conclusion

There are a few options out there to pull in HD signals over the air, and if you live less than 30 miles from the towers its never been easier to do so. The HD Blade from Solid Signal works well and at less than $40 is no brainer for those who wish to cut the cord or simply want a good backup for when the cable goes out.

Download Episode #550


Posted by The HT Guys, September 27, 2012 9:56 PM

About The HT Guys

The HT Guys, Ara Derderian and Braden Russell, are Engineers who formerly worked for the Advanced Digital Systems Group (ADSG) of Sony Pictures Entertainment. ADSG was the R&D unit of the sound department producing products for movie theaters and movie studios.

Two of the products they worked on include the DCP-1000 and DADR-5000. The DCP is a digital cinema processor used in movie theaters around the world. The DADR-5000 is a disk-based audio dubber used on Hollywood sound stages.

ADSG was awarded a Technical Academy Award by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences in 2000 for the development of the DADR-5000. Ara holds three patents for his development work in Digital Cinema and Digital Audio Recording.

Every week they put together a podcast about High Definition TV and Home Theater. Each episode brings news from the A/V world, helpful product reviews and insights and help in demystifying and simplifying HDTV and home theater.