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RCA Slivr XL review: Mixed reception at this price? No thanks

The Good The RCA Slivr has decent build quality and an included amp, which may help if your TV signal is quite weak. The amp was able to pull in the most number of watchable channels out of our test suite of popular stations.

The Bad It's the most expensive unit we tested. The included amp offered mixed results and, depending on where you live, it may be better not to use it at all. The antenna has a captive cable that means you may need to buy extension cables to get signal to your TV.

The Bottom Line The RCA Slivr XL showed mixed performance that means it's not worth the price.

6.5 Overall
  • Design 6
  • Features 7
  • Performance 7
  • Value 6

With its try-hard name and X shape embossed on the front, the RCA Slivr XL antenna could polarize opinions on looks alone.

The Slivr isn't the most feature-rich antenna on the market either, for while it does includes a gain amplifier it only includes a short 6-foot captive cord and lacks window-mounting hardware. It does have keyholes to mount it on a wall, however.

While it's called the XL, it wasn't the largest model in our test -- despite being a sizeable 11.2 inches high by 10.4 inches wide and 0.46 inches deep, it was still dwarfed by the Channel Master Smartenna.

rca-slivr-xl.jpg
Sarah Tew/CNET

If you live in a built-up area, you may find that the included signal boosting amp isn't all that useful. In our city test, in Manhattan, it performed worse with the amp attached, and in our suburban Long Island location it only performed as well as cheaper, nonamped models.

At its high price -- $70 -- it was the most expensive in the test and at this price we can't recommend it. Unusually the cheaper nonamped version, which is $45, did manage to get the most number of watchable channels (seven), so that may be worth investigating instead. Or just buy the Mohu ReLeaf or Channel Master Flatenna and save yourself some cash -- the latter is just $10.

See how the RCA Slivr XL fared in our cord-cutters' guide to indoor antennas here.

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