30 second review
Winegard’s TH-3000 FlatWave Amped Pro Antenna offers good performance and uses an effective first time installation app that shows you the real world reception potential before installation.
The completely flat design of the TH-3000, with no footprint, on the window/on the wall, will appeal to the decor conscious and can be trusted to bring in digital TV stations up to 100 kilometers away. You can find antennas that offer similar performance for less money, but they’re probably bulkier and less easy to hide from view.
The TH-3000 is a perfectly flat, flexible membrane – matte white on one side, matte black on the other, matching decor and location – that’s only about half a millimeter thick. It is intended to be mounted on a window or wall with the supplied adhesive tabs (although the small fixture the down lead connects to is a lot thicker). A signal booster occupying a pod the size of a jumbo pack of gum is located about two-thirds of the way from the 15-foot cable, which is plenty long for most setups.
The amplifier module has a blue LED that indicates power on and blinks when paired with the app. It also has a mini USB port to get power, either from a USB port in the TV or from the small plug-in charger that comes with the antenna.
To set up the Winegard, first download the “Connected” app (iOS/Android) via a QR code on the amplifier module. The app then walks you through the location process and shows you the number of strong, moderate and weak stations to expect. It can also show a map locating it relative to your location – a potentially useful tool. (Most antenna maker websites, as well as the FCCs, offer similar maps once you enter your location.)
Each scan through the app takes 10 to 15 seconds, so it’s easy to try different antenna panel locations to optimize reception. You can do the same with any antenna via sequential channel scans through the TV, but Winegard’s app is a decidedly faster and more convenient solution.
Once you have found the best location, simply stick the membrane to the window or wall, route and connect the down lead, then run a channel scan on the TV. Two points to note: first, and unsurprisingly, a window will usually provide better reception than a wall (although the construction variations are vast); second, I found that the antenna obviously worked best when it was perfectly flat, so if your window has split lights or other obstructions, performance may drop.
Winegard claims a 60-mile range for the FlatWave Amped Pro, which was pretty much in line with my results. My semi-rural, hilltop test site has a good elevation of nearly 360-degree line of sight to transmitters ranging from about 15 to about 70 miles, scattered in all directions. With the TH-3000 panel mounted in a south-facing window, my Sony has nine main carriers tuned for about 33 total stations (digital subchannels), the farthest of which is a strong signal just over 70 miles away and almost south .
One carrier was borderline and clearly came in when the weather conditions were ideal, but blocked and pixelated at other times. Although Winegard specifies the FlatWave Amped Pro as multi-directional, like virtually all comparable interior designs, some directionality should be expected: A medium-power carrier east of my test site only came in when the panel was moved to an east window, where it lost some of the most remote, more southerly signals.
Other, larger indoor antennas performed slightly better in the same location – although some daily atmospheric variations must be taken into account. And to provide some perspective, my house’s attic-mounted antenna tunes a total of 15 or 16 carriers and up to 70 total stations.
I am always careful to repeat in reviews that any location will be ? terribly different, and the most important variable will always be the height. So like any other antenna, the Winegard should be placed as high as possible.
Should you buy the Winegard Flatwave Amped Pro?
Buy it if…
You live in an urban environment or on the outskirts of a suburb
With an ability to bring in signals up to 60 miles, this Winegard should be all the antenna you need.
You don’t want to see an antenna in your room
The FlatWave Amped Pro is designed in such a way that it can be easily hidden out of sight.
Don’t buy it if…
You can’t install an antenna quite high in the room
The FlatWave Amped Pro performs best when it is perfectly flat (a window installation is best).
You must bring in stations from greater than 60-70 miles
If you live in a rural or semi-rural area that is far from TV channels, you may be better off with a higher mounted, larger indoor antenna or an outdoor design.