As experienced antenna installers specializing in cord cutting, we’ve encountered countless options claiming to offer the best reception and value for money. In the realm of over-the-air (OTA) antennas, the Antennas Direct ClearStream 2MAX stands out as a reliable choice for cord cutters seeking to break free from expensive cable and satellite subscriptions.
Antennas Direct needs no introduction as one of the top performers in terms of antenna manufacturing. The ClearStream 2MAX antenna’s relatively compact size and bold design makes it ideal for both indoor antenna installations, as well as outdoor antenna installations.
However, the bold design and size aren’t purely aesthetics as they also contribute to the ClearStream 2MAX’s ability to receive and lock into long range television broadcast signals from over 60 miles. If you’re contemplating purchasing this high performance antenna, be sure read our complete antenna review here first.
Antennas Direct Clearstream 2MAX Antenna
Pros and Cons
A very powerful HDTV antenna that will allow you to receive signals from 60+ miles.
- Doesn’t require additional software, simple to install.
- Reliable in picking free local channels.
- Robust and durable against bad weathers, wind, and sunny conditions.
- Powerful antenna with a 60+ mile range.
- Supports the new ATSC 3 standard for 4K broadcasts.
- Can be installed as an indoor antenna, outdoor antenna, or attic antenna.
- Includes all the required mounting hardware.
- This is an amplified antenna which includes a 20dB amplifier.
- Lifetime warranty on parts.
- Depending on your location, a 60-mile reception range might not be enough.
- Larger than typical flat indoor antennas so could be a problem if installing inside.
|Antennas Direct’s ClearStream 2MAX Antenna
|Both, typically outdoor
|UHF 8.7 dBi / VHF 2.6 dBi
|470 to 700MHz: 60 Degrees (Horizontal Plane) Reception Pattern
|17.25″ L x 31.5″ W x 4″ D
|20” mast, adjustable mounting hardware
|Lifetime warranty on parts replacement
What’s in the Box?
The package comes with the ClearStream 2MAX antenna unit and:
- Indoor Antenna Stand
- J-Mount Mast
- Mast End Cap
- 1 – 25mm Mast Clamp Bolt
- Mast Clamp and Back Plate
- Wing Nuts and U-Clamp
- 2 – 40mm Hex Bolts and Nuts
- 4 – 50mm J-Mount Bolts
- Mount Base
- 4 – Sealing Pads
In short, you basically have all you need to install the Antennas Direct ClearStream 2MAX HDTV both indoor or outdoor.
If you want to use the included indoor mount, simply slide the mount onto the bottom of the antenna. The package also includes many different outdoor mounting options, or you can easily attach the antenna to a pole if you want.
No matter the mounting option, you can connect the coaxial cable out the back of the antenna to your TV, then start scanning for OTA TV channels.
Assembly and Installation
If you want to use the ClearStream 2MAX HDTV indoors, the installation is pretty simple:
Step 1: Connect the coaxial cable to the antenna, then connect the antenna to the included Antenna Stand (2).
Step 2: Raise the dipole antennas outwards until they click into place, then you can start searching for OTA signals
Installing the ClearStream 2MAX outdoors will require a little more work than installing it indoors. You’ll need an adjustable wrench, Phillips screwdriver (#2), 3/16” drill bit, and ratcheting drivers (8mm and 10 mm). Depending on where you are going to mount the antenna, you may have to consider drilling holes to get the strongest signals.
To add mounting hardware to the ClearStream 2MAX, first, remove the long bolt from the back of the antenna. This should be pretty easy to do if you have the right tool. Then, use the same long bolt with the included Mast clamp bolt to secure the mounting back plate, look at the image below for a clearer instruction:
Then, you should first assemble the J-Mount by attaching the J-mount mast to the mount base. Use the included Hex Bolts and nuts, as shown below.
Next, mark the mount base on the desired surface, and drill the pilot holes. You should drill 1” deep plot holes for each of the 50mm J-Mount bolts, as shown below.
Place the sealing pads over the holes, then place the mount base on top of the sealing pads. Tighten the J-mount bolts to secure the base of the surface.
Finally, raise the dipole antennas until they click into place.
It’s important to first check the reception in the location where you are going to mount the antenna before attaching the J-mount mast, not only to ensure efficiency, but since removing the attached J-mount can be difficult.
Aiming The Antenna
Since the ClearStream 2MAX is a multi-directional, wide beam-angle antenna, you don’t need to aim it directly at the broadcast towers. However, it’s always a good idea to know which direction your signals are transmitting from and aim your antenna at that largest cluster of towers.
If you are unsure what TV signals are available in your area, then we recommend checking out our TV Station Locator Tool page.
Our YouTube video below shows you how to use this tool.
Signal Strength, Reception, and Frequencies
Signal Strength and Reception
The ClearStream 2MAX has an advertised signal strength of more than 60 miles. Based on our tests, the signal strength is quite reliable up to at least 50 miles since we can get signals from DC stations that are located roughly 50 miles from our Baltimore office that we previously couldn’t get with our existing indoor antenna.
As we switched our indoor antenna with the 2Max HDTV (placed outdoors), our channels line up went from only 29 channels to 44 clear channels, all of them are clear and we can get 1080i resolutions without any issues. The 2Max also offers one of the best signal capture profiles when compared to other antennas we’ve tested.
The ClearStream 2MAX antenna supports both UHF and VHF reception with 470-700 MHz frequency range and 8.7 dBi maximum gain. By supporting both UHF and VHF, the ClearStream 2MAX offers a versatile antenna that can receive signals in virtually any condition.
Also, it is a 4K-ready antenna, making it a very versatile, future-proof option.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
You can check the official manual for the product from Antennas Direct or contact their support team for specific questions about the 2MAX antenna. Below is the official product profile video of the 2MAX.
We’ve compiled a short list of frequently asked questions below:
1. I’m not getting any signals at all
There are several possible causes for this:
- You might have an analog-only television, and you’ll need a digital converter box to use the antenna.
- If you are already using a digital TV, then you might need to configure the TV. Check your TV’s manual for proper instructions, but here are a few tips:
- Press the Input button (or similar names) on your TV remote, and make sure to set the input to ‘TV’
- Press the home button/menu on your remote, and set the signal type to ‘Antenna’, ‘Broadcast’, ‘Air’, ‘OTA’, or similar names
- Within the TV’s menu, select ‘Channel Scan’ or just ‘Channel’ to perform scanning
- Make sure you are positioned within 60 miles of the nearest TV transmission tower since this amplified antenna only has a 60+mile coverage range.
- If you are installing outdoor antennas, it might be blocked by other buildings and don’t have a clear line of sight to the nearest TV tower. You might need to mount the antenna higher or relocate the TV antenna. Avoid placing the antenna near high trees, buildings, or directly facing a roof.
- Similarly, when installing indoor TV antennas, avoid placing the antenna near thick materials like metal siding, bricks, radiant barrier, or stucco.
- Check all coaxial cable connections. Check the coax cable itself for any signs of damage or moisture.
2. I’m receiving every channel but one
You might need to rescan, and if you are using a converter box, rescan the converter box. If it still fails, the channel you aren’t receiving may have its transmitter lower on the transmission tower or is distributed from a different tower than the other transmitters.
You might need to place the antenna in a more elevated place or moving it to another location. Make sure to rescan as you move the antenna to different locations.
3. I’m very close to the broadcast tower, but can’t receive stable signals
A common cause of this issue is because your TV is receiving interfering signals. Move the antenna so it’s not placed near other antennas and/or metal objects. If this is still not successful, a larger/stronger antenna might not solve this issue, and you might need the use of an attenuator pad.
4. Is the Clearstream 4MAX better than the 2MAX?
The Antennas Direct ClearStream 4MAX and ClearStream 2MAX are both highly regarded antennas in the ClearStream lineup, each offering unique features and benefits. Whether one is “better” than the other depends on your specific needs and circumstances.
If you’re located in a rural area or need longer range capabilities, the ClearStream 4MAX may be the better option. However, if you prioritize ease of installation and versatility in signal capture, the ClearStream 2MAX could be the ideal choice.
5. What are the dimensions of ClearStream 2MAX?
The dimensions of the 2MAX antenna are approximately 20.1 inches in height, 28.2 inches in width, and 5.1 inches in depth. These measurements may vary slightly depending on the specific model and any included mounting hardware.
It’s worth noting that the ClearStream 2MAX features a compact and streamlined design, making it relatively easy to install in a variety of indoor or outdoor locations.
6. What is the best antenna to get all channels?
Selecting the “best” antenna to receive all channels depends on various factors such as your location, distance from broadcast towers, terrain, and surrounding obstacles. While there is no one-size-fits-all solution for receiving all channels, some antennas are highly recommended for their versatility and performance.
If you have the option to install your antenna outdoors, this is the recommended way. Please see our best outdoor antennas guide, for our top performers in this category. If installing your TV antennas outside is not an option, then be sure to check out our best indoor antennas guide for our top picks.
7. How do you aim a ClearStream antenna?
Since both the ClearStream 2MAX and ClearStream 4MAX are multidirectional antennas with a wide beam angle, meaning, direct alignment is not needed. These antennas are perfect when you live between multiple towers in different directions.
Both the 2MAX and 4MAX will pick up most stations with a strong signal even when not directly pointed at the tower because of their unique design.