Many people ask for the best but they are often given a rubber chicken.
Without defining “digital” and “best” then regardless of price you will indeed have the best digital rubber chick that ever was.
A simple google search for “the best digital antenna” will find mostly indoor junk style antennas that are little more than a metal coat-hanger and very good quality marketing.
Fist thing you can do to protect yourself is ask for a warranty. Can you bring it back? This is the most simple way to confirm if it’s a con or a real product. A good quality antenna should last 10 to 20 years in all sorts of weather conditions and ability to survive a few birds. If your antenna has a 12 month warranty good chance it will start to fail around 2 years. This is planned obsolescence and nothing new but something not everyone knows about. Planned obsolescence is even part of your humble light bulb.
A good antenna will provide reliable signal level in all weather conditions and for at-least 10 years. Locations outside normal coverage areas will likely see little difference between the best and the worst antenna as atmospheric variables have more effect than any design,gain or height your antenna can have.
In short warranty is key to not getting scammed. If warranty is not given because of a good sales pitch its not the best antenna your the best customer.
In long. What is digital and the important factors? and what are the attributes given to best?
First marketing and engineering don’t agree on these terms. They never have and with any product electronic or rubber their objectives are different. Engineering require the product to work to standards and abide by scientific rules that can be replicated, reproduced and proven. Marketing is very important yet have no rules.
Digital signal requires a reliable signal, even at a lower level than what analog could provide a reasonable picture if the signal is stable the picture quality can be perfect full HD, 4K, 3D ect. This does explain why multiple levels of amplification can work but often does not.
Poor structural integrity is often the reason for a sudden change in signal level. Be it thin alloy elements or poor weatherproofing if the basic design holds out just long enough to work perfect for some period of time this becomes a goal profitable design as consumers will buy another.
Frequency of the antenna again was important “back in the old days” and now is a important part of reliability. Another way to look at a well matched antenna is efficiency. Only a good match will produce a higher level and additional resistance to unwanted signals. A poor match or even using an antenna designed for a totally different band can work in some cases with reliability well out the window. With the correct equipment it is very easy to compare and identify good, better, best and horrible.
Terrain of your location is very important and can vary at each end of a single street. Low gain yagi’s are very cheap and simple in city metro locations with great results, phased arrays work well in locations that would often have no signal and very high gain directional antennas can provide the highest quality signal in a line of sight location but with each pro there is a con. Ying and Yang, positive and negative simply the thousands of antenna designs available would not be available if each didn’t have an edge in some cases over another.
4G or lte filtering is common in all name brand products for well over 7 years now. Often used as a selling point yet this is a very standard thing.
Recap. Warranty is key unless you can identify good digital antenna that includes structural, frequency and terrain characteristics that will be best for your location.
Common lines that are tricks to avoid technical questions are
1. This product is what i use and it works great
2. This product is what Barry used and nothing else would work
3. Nicola Tesla or my friend the genius said this is the best one
4. This product has been used 10,000 times before with never a problem
5. We use this one all the time or in all locations and never had a problem before
Each may sound good yet hold no technical value, avoids blame and gives no further direction.