Omnidirectional antenna vs directional antenna

Omnidirectional antenna vs directional antenna, which one is the best? According to user’s satisfaction and overall comparison Omnidirectional antennas stand out in most ways.

But, wait. Does that mean Directional antennas are clearly bad?

Well, no. Both types of antennas have their pros and sons. If directional antennas were so bad and of no use, manufacturers wouldn’t make them and users won’t get them, right?

There are some situations where omni-directional antennas stand out in the crowd than directional antennas. In this article you’ll get all your answers regarding the controversy mentioned.

So, without delaying let’s get the kith and keen of directional and omni-directional antennas.0

What Is Directional Antenna?

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Directional antennas are also known as dipole antenna. A Directional antenna is a one way antenna that picks up signal from one specific direction. The antenna is pointed towards the dedicated broadcasting tower and the antenna picks up all the signal in it very strongly.

That means, directional antennas can’t pick up signals from different directions because of their certain antenna gain design.

However, they do get some of the stations from the back side because it has some gain and minimal signal coverage backwards.

What Is An Omnidirectional Antenna?

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Omnidirectional antenna is simply the opposite of a directional antenna. It picks up signals from different broadcasting towers located in different areas. But, the signals they catch sometimes aren’t as good as a directional antenna.

It is because their signal strength is weaker than directional antennas. However, if your different broadcasting towers are a moderate distance from your home, your omnidirectional antenna can do the job well enough.

Omnidirectional Antenna Vs Directional Antenna – Comparison Chart

From the comparison chart below, let’s understand the basic differences between directional and omnidirectional antennas.

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Comparison PointDirectional AntennaOmnidirectional Antenna
Antenna Gain DesignAntenna Gain is designed for one specific directionAntenna Gain is designed for multiple directions
ShapeStandard type of antenna design with reflectors in some casesUFO or oval round shape
Purpose Of UseGetting channels  from one broadcasting towerGetting channels from multiple broadcasting towers
Signal StrengthStronger than omnidirectional antennaWeaker than directional antenna
Suitable UsesHouses, offices or any fixed setup placesRVs, Vans, Cars or any moveable carrier

Advantages And Disadvantages Of Directional Antenna

Directional antennas have got a huge fan base as it’s the one that most people rely on. Obviously because they have a lot of advantages. But besides advantages, directional antennas have some disadvantages too.

Let’s explore the advantages and disadvantages of directional antennas.


  • One way antenna gain design-

Directional antennas have one way specific antenna gain design. So, you only get stations from single direction. This is beneficial as most of the major TV channels like CNN, FOX, CBS, CW and NBC come from one broadcasting tower.

  • Uninterrupted signals reception-

In a directional antenna, the signal gets less traffic as the antenna doesn’t catch any other tower’s stations. As the signals come from one way you get uninterrupted signal reception.

  • Stronger signal than other-

Because of the directional antenna’s gain design the signals are stronger than the omnidirectional antenna. So, you always get a clear signal. There is no need to move the antenna’s pointer repeatedly to fix signals.

It can get signals from the nearest cell tower as well as distant towers.

  • Comes with reflector-
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Some directional antennas are designed with reflectors in the back. It is to avoid interference and boost the high quality signal picked up from the stations.

  • Able to pick up weak TV signals-

Directional antenna increases signal strength and have strong signals within themselves.. So, if your broadcasting tower is providing weak signals, a directional antenna will have no difficulty to pick that up.


  • No mobility-

The only absolute con about a directional antenna is just not having mobility. Once you set up a directional antenna, you can’t move it. Because, if you do so it won’t be able to pick up signals like before.

Advantages And Disadvantages Of Omnidirectional Antenna

Likewise directional antenna, omni-directional antenna has some advantages and disadvantages too. Let’s explore them.


  • Provides good signal for mobility-

If you’re planning on setting up an antenna for your RV or car, then an omnidirectional antenna is the best suit for you. Vehicles are mobile; so you need something that can catch radio frequency while moving from places to places.

An omnidirectional antenna can do that, so you should go for one in case of frequent mobility.

  • Able to grab signals from different broadcasting towers-

Omnidirectional antenna’s main purpose is to grab signals from different directions. Suppose, you live far from your main broadcasting tower. You can set up an omnidirectional antenna to get stations from the alternative towers.

  • Works relatively better in flat area-

It means the area is flat if you’re situated between two major markets. In flat areas signals are moderately strong. Here, an omnidirectional antenna can work well enough to provide you with an uninterrupted station’s telecast.

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  • Weaker signal strength than directional antenna-

Because of the antenna gain design, an omnidirectional antenna’s signal strength is weaker than a directional antenna. So, if your network provider’s signal isn’t so strong, an omnidirectional antenna won’t be a good choice for you in terms of coverage distance.

Besides, as omni antennas are weak signal catchers, interference signal also lowers its reception.


Is directional antenna better than omnidirectional for TV?

If you are going to run a TV in your home, I suggest you go for a directional dipole antenna. Because directional antennas will give you a more reliable and stable signal reception than omnidirectional antennas for TV.

What is the difference between directional and multidirectional antennas?

There are no such differences between directional and multidirectional antennas. Some manufacturers or brands market directional antennas often as multidirectional antennas. It is basically the same thing.

Which antenna is best for long distance (directional or Omni-directional)?

Radio signals become weak gradually when it crosses more and more distance. It happens because of the resistance of natural and urbanizing elements like trees and tall buildings.

So, a directional antenna is the best to get the best out of what is reaching you. Directional antennas can receive weak signals well and having a reflector it can boost the signal. So, you get pure picture and sound quality in your TV. That’s why it’ll be your prime choice.

Wrap Up

The controversy, omnidirectional antenna vs directional antenna will always be a hot topic for cord cutters. To say overall, directional antenna is the option that most homeowners prefer.

If you’re a homeowner, you can go for one. However, if you’re looking for the best antenna for your RV, an omnidirectional antenna is the go to one for you.

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