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Author Topic: WiFi Booster?  (Read 3012 times)

AGENT86

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WiFi Booster?
« on: July 25, 2013, 11:34:49 AM »
I'm setting up in an out-of-the-way RV campground & marina. It's right on the Sampit River, in Georgetown, SC. They don't have cable, or internet hook-up/access. The owner told me that the folks in boats, down on the docks receive good strong WiFi signal. He told me that depending where a person is located in the campground, will determine whether they receive signal or not, and/or how strong/reliable that signal will be. He seems fairly confident, based on my location, I'll receive signal, at least part of the time. He based this on the fact that one of his cabins, about 75 feet from me, received signal.

I really need to have continuous signal. When my daughter is with me, she HAS to have computer access, for school. I'll be buying a laptop in a couple weeks, which will have the internal WiFi antenna. I've been looking into booster antennas. The reviews seem to trend toward exterior mount units for the strongest & most reliable WiFi signal. Below, are a couple I think seem pretty good? Anybody have any other thoughts/input on this subject, based on their personal experience?

Also, I'll need to get some kind of satellite dish, because I really don't think the antenna that's mounted on the roof of my Rockwood is going to get the job done. What's the most reasonable/affordable route to go regarding a television antenna, one that will get more than two or five channels?



http://www.amazon.com/USB-Yagi-directional-Antenna-802-11n-2200mW/dp/B003LLS5JI/ref=pd_cp_pc_1


http://www.amazon.com/Mobile-Outdoor-Wifi-Antenna-Stand/dp/B0075FI42Y/ref=sr_1_52?ie=UTF8&qid=1374740940&sr=8-52&keywords=rv+wifi+booster


http://www.thewirie.com/productsbuy.html



Bobtop46

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Re: WiFi Booster?
« Reply #1 on: July 25, 2013, 12:52:36 PM »
Try the one Gary reviewed sold by rvled bulbs, a sponsor of this site.
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Alfa38User

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Re: WiFi Booster?
« Reply #2 on: July 25, 2013, 01:13:10 PM »
If you absolutely have to have wireless access, you cannot depend on WiFi for many reasons, some of which are range, protected signal or not, signal availability, load being carried on any available signal and so on. Boosters work only if an unprotected reasonable or just slightly marginal signal is available. You won't really know what is available or needed until you are set up, in most cases.

If you MUST have it, you will likely have to depend on access using a cell phone connection ($$)

For Over the Air (OTA) TV signals, don't forget most stations have now switched over to broadcasting a digital signal. To get a good signal over the air you will  need to have a digital to analog converter hooked up between the TV and the antenna. The exception would be a TV set that has a digital tuner already. There may be some stations in your area that have not yet converted, but not many!!

The "batwing" antenna found on many RV's does a good job when OTA signals are available and once it has been pointed correctly . (It is a directional antenna!)
« Last Edit: July 26, 2013, 08:05:14 AM by Alfa38User »
Stu
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Kim (skyking4ar2) Bertram

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Re: WiFi Booster?
« Reply #3 on: July 25, 2013, 02:32:17 PM »
The owner told me that the folks in boats, down on the docks receive good strong WiFi signal. He told me that depending where a person is located in the campground, will determine whether they receive signal or not, and/or how strong/reliable that signal will be.

Sorry, I have to ask this question - whose WiFi are they picking up if the campground does not provide Internet access??? I suspect he was confusing a cell signal with a WiFi siganl.  MiFi and WiFi are two different things, the first is from a cellular carrier, the second from a wireless delivery point that may or may not be cellular.

It makes a difference on how to solve the problem.

We use both, when available, and use Verizon and AT&T networks, and have boosters, if needed for the cellular networks. It can get a bit complicated if you have to have connectivity. It is usually a problem that money and equipment will solve, however, if that is any consolation.  8)
Kim & Christi Bertram
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AGENT86

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Re: WiFi Booster?
« Reply #4 on: July 25, 2013, 08:22:46 PM »
Try the one Gary reviewed sold by rvled bulbs, a sponsor of this site.

I'll look into that one...thanks!

AGENT86

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Re: WiFi Booster?
« Reply #5 on: July 25, 2013, 08:24:46 PM »
Sorry, I have to ask this question - whose WiFi are they picking up if the campground does not provide Internet access??? I suspect he was confusing a cell signal with a WiFi siganl.  MiFi and WiFi are two different things, the first is from a cellular carrier, the second from a wireless delivery point that may or may not be cellular.

It makes a difference on how to solve the problem.

We use both, when available, and use Verizon and AT&T networks, and have boosters, if needed for the cellular networks. It can get a bit complicated if you have to have connectivity. It is usually a problem that money and equipment will solve, however, if that is any consolation.  8)

Now that you ask, I'm not sure what he meant...it seemed like he indicated the signal came across from the open marshes on the other side of the river. IDK.
This is all new to me, I'm going to miss my high-speed cable access!
« Last Edit: July 25, 2013, 08:27:05 PM by AGENT86 »

AGENT86

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Re: WiFi Booster?
« Reply #6 on: July 25, 2013, 08:30:09 PM »
If you absolutely have to have wireless access, you cannot depend on WiFi for many reasons, some of which are range, protected signal or not, signal availability, load being carried on any available signal and so on. Boosters work only if an unprotected reasonable or just slightly marginal signal is available. You won't really know what is available or needed until you are set up, in most cases.

If you MUST have it, you will likely have to depend on access using a cell phone connection ($$)

For Over the Air (OTA) TV signals, don't forget most stations have now switched over to broadcasting a digital signal. To get a good signal over the air you will  need to have a digital, to analog converter hooked up between the TV and the antenna. The exception would be a TV set that has a digital tuner already. There may be some stations in your area that have not yet converted, but not many!!

The "batwing" antenna found on many RV's does a good job when OTA signals are available and once it has been pointed correctly . (It is a directional antenna!)

When I purchased the RV, the owner kept pointing out & talking up the "booster" he bought & installed between the antenna cable & t.v. He said it seemed to work pretty good. Then, he said he wasn't sure if it worked anymore or not...but if not, it was only $30 or $40 to replace. So, I'll know later tomorrow about that part, when I get everything fired up!

Gary RV_Wizard

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Re: WiFi Booster?
« Reply #7 on: July 26, 2013, 08:13:32 AM »
For the wifi, antenna (height & placement) and a powerful radio are the key ingredients. I get good results with the CCrane Super USB Wifi unit and it's a "plug and play" set-up, but there are other excellent ones as well. I usually do fine with the Super USB unit just hung up in the coach, but once in awhile I've had to run the cable outside (via a wiondow or around the edge of a slideout) to get better reception. If trees or hills are in the way, getting it outside and up is a big help.

Some other units that get good reports are the JefaTech Repeater and the Wifi Ranger.
Gary
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Summers: Black Mountain, NC
Home: Ocala National Forest, FL

Alfa38User

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Re: WiFi Booster?
« Reply #8 on: July 26, 2013, 08:26:09 AM »
That " booster" he bought was most likely a converter if it was put in  in the last 3 years or so. They sold anywhere from 10$ (with federal subsidy) to 60$ or so. The digital converters come with a remote control and connect to the TV via the antenna input with the TV turned to either channel 3 or 4. The converter then controls the channels selected via its own remote. The normal antenna power supply used with the batwing style antenna is still required and the antenna itself still has to be pointed correctly to get the best signal. This is probably best done before hooking up the converter and avoid confusing things!! Once a good signal is being received, the converter must be directed to scan (using menus built-into the converter logic),  all channels and determine what it can receive.

Where to point the TV antenna?? Start here: http://www.antennapoint.com/

The distance  or range of a WiFi signal is quite limited, more than 1/4 mile distance would be stretching it for WiFi, especially the signal to and from a built-in lap top system. The terms 'wireless' and WiFi are very often used interchangeably but they are NOT the same as was pointed out by skyking. The greater challenge will be finding an open and dependable signal as most individuals today usually password protect their WiFi signal (or they should!!) to prevent unauthorized access.

Again, 'must have'  means a cell phone type of service will most likely be required and, yes, boosters may also be needed for that as well, in some cases.
« Last Edit: July 26, 2013, 08:55:28 AM by Alfa38User »
Stu
Montréal, Canada 🍁
Snowbird, Naples Florida
Alfa Gold 38 (2000) 5ver (parked!)

"Of course I talk to myself, sometimes I need expert advise!!!"

dverstra

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Re: WiFi Booster?
« Reply #9 on: July 26, 2013, 09:08:27 AM »
That " booster" he bought was most likely a converter if it was put in  in the last 3 years or so. They sold anywhere from 10$ (with federal subsidy) to 60$ or so. The digital converters come with a remote control and connect to the TV via the antenna input with the TV turned to either channel 3 or 4. The converter then controls the channels selected via its own remote. The normal antenna power supply used with the batwing style antenna is still required and the antenna itself still has to be pointed correctly to get the best signal. This is probably best done before hooking up the converter and avoid confusing things!!

The distance  or range of a WiFi signal is quite limited, more than 1/4 mile distance would be stretching it for WiFi, especially the signal to and from a built-in lap top system. The terms 'wireless' and WiFi are very often used interchangeably but they are NOT the same as was pointed out by skyking. The greater challenge will be finding an open and dependable signal as most individuals today usually password protect their WiFi signal (or they should!!) to prevent unauthorized access.

Again, 'must have'  means a cell phone type of service will most likely be required and, yes, boosters may also be needed for that as well, in some cases.

If you must have an Internet connection, a Verizon MiFi will work if you have a good cell connection. To boost a wifi signal, I used a Wifi Ranger. This is a pic of it on the batwing.


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Tom Hoffman

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Re: WiFi Booster?
« Reply #10 on: July 26, 2013, 10:39:54 AM »
We had a similar  problem and solved it using Millenicom.com  the normal operating speed on it is 2-3 times faster than my phone line DSL at home where we are right now, we are running 15-20mps all the time.

No contract, will operate 5 divices and we use it in the truck going down the highway too.

we have he HOTSPOT plan.

http://millenicom.com/plans/#hotspot-plan

I ran a test just now.
Wife said to me. "What cha doin' today?"  "Nothin'" says I.  "Ya did that yestiday!" Says she.  "I didn't get done!" says I

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