Review: Leaf HD Antenna

When we moved to our new house, I needed to buy a new HD TV antenna. My previous approach wouldn’t work without drilling a new hole through the stone exterior of our new abode, so I began looking for an indoor option. Finally, I settled on the Leaf. There are two options: powered and basic. I purchased the powered version based on the combined reviews of both models.

The box arrived in our mailbox and seemed unimpressive. The box was ridiculously light and the body of the antenna is a thin, laminated sheet a touch larger than a standard 8 1/2” x 11” piece of paper. I began wondering what the return policy was. Undeterred, I screwed the Leaf coaxial cable into the TiVo and taped the unit to the wall. I scanned the airwaves for available channels and to my surprise, about thirty-seven were found.

Your mileage may vary. My setup consists of a Series 3 TiVo with a Western Digital 1TB DVR expander. According to antennaweb.org, our house in Benbrook is in a zone with all channels in blue zone or closer except for one.

I figured most of these would be unwatchable, but in my testing, I was able to view each channel clearly for several moments as I flipped. Most of these channels are things I don’t watch regularly such as hispanic and religious channels, but FOX, ABC, CBS, TXA-21, PBS, and CW, are all fully functional and so far reliable. NBC is flaky, but it was flaky with our previous antenna too. I will likely need to experiment with some alternate positioning.

Experiment with the wall positioning. Initially, I thought I’d put it as high on the wall as possible, but the sweet spot turned out to be about a third of the way from the top of the wall. You might want a helper to check the signal as you move the antenna around. Then, use something like these 3M command cable hooks to secure the cable. The cable needs to point straight down from the antenna body. The best I can ascertain is that the coaxial cable is actually a part of the antenna much like the iPhone 4 and 4S body serves as part of its antenna.

To my surprise, the Leaf from Mohu is a great HD antenna. It’s not as robust as the Terk we used previously, but it works great and prevented my having to drill a new hole in the exterior. The Leaf is a pleasantly surprising feat of engineering, and if you’re looking to cut the cord from cable or satellite, you should definitely give it a try.