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Author Topic: New cell phone booster review  (Read 1962 times)

NY_Dutch

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New cell phone booster review
« on: June 08, 2016, 12:31:04 PM »
I have no financial interest in this product other than as a satisfied purchaser...

I recently upgraded from a WeBoost Drive 4G-M cell signal amplifier/repeater to a Maximum Signal MaxAmp RV mobile cell signal amplifier/repeater, and have been very pleased with the results so far. We've now been through a number of areas where we've previously had no signal or a very unreliable signal for both voice and data even using an external antenna, and have had no loss of signal and good data speeds with the MaxAmp. The WeBoost did serve us well last winter in some pretty poor signal areas, but the inside antenna limitation that requires your device to be within a few feet of the antenna was a real drawback with multiple devices in use and two people trying to use them at the same time. The MaxAmp is giving us a good signal throughout our coach and even extends it out to our patio area under the awning. I can't post meaningful speed comparison numbers, although we have checked from time to time, because most of the time when we switched the MaxAmp off in those areas, we would get either no signal, or 1X or 3G data only, compared to a 4G signal with it on. We did learn early on that "bars" on the phone or MiFi display are relatively meaningless, with the signal quality and data speeds being the better units of measure, just as the engineers told us to expect. In every no or low signal area where we've checked, our RSSI numbers and data speeds have been well within acceptable levels using the MaxAmp, and pretty much unchanged in moderate to strong signal areas, as required under the current FCC booster rules.

If you're in the market for a quality cell booster that does what it says it does, I recommend giving the new MaxAmp some serious consideration.
Dutch
2001 GBM Landau 34' Class A
F53 Chassis, Triton V10, TST TPMS
2011 Toyota RAV4 4WD/Remco pump
ReadyBrute Elite tow bar/Blue Ox base plate

Gary RV_Wizard

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Re: New cell phone booster review
« Reply #1 on: June 08, 2016, 02:53:00 PM »
The Weboost 4G-M (mobile) is indeed very limited on the inside antenna. The inside antenna is a key component and one that often gets short shrift. I have the Weboost 4G small office model and still find limited coverage inside, even though the booster itself is excellent. I see that Wilson (Weboost) is now including the wall panel antenna in the kit instead of the little desktop antenna, but the price jumped up too. I may get one of those, though.

The ceiling antenna on the Max Amp  RV must be a good one. Which external antenna did you choose? Trucker or Mag Mount?
Gary
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Gary Brinck
Summers: Black Mountain, NC
Home: Ocala National Forest, FL

JDOnTheGo

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Re: New cell phone booster review
« Reply #2 on: June 08, 2016, 03:45:37 PM »
Thanks for the real-world review Dutch!
JD - Full timer out west
1998 MCI 102 EL3 Revolution | 2010 Wrangler (daJeep) | 650 Watts Solar
My Adventures

NY_Dutch

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Re: New cell phone booster review
« Reply #3 on: June 08, 2016, 03:52:31 PM »
I went with the mag mount antenna, Gary, since it would fit well with my other mag mount antennas on the large steel plate I installed for a ground plane a few years ago. I may try the trucker at some point to see if it makes any difference, but the folks at Maximum Signal suggested the mag mount as the better choice for an RV with a high roof. The performance specs are apparently very close on both, and the springy mag is much less prone to damage of course, from tree limbs, etc.
Dutch
2001 GBM Landau 34' Class A
F53 Chassis, Triton V10, TST TPMS
2011 Toyota RAV4 4WD/Remco pump
ReadyBrute Elite tow bar/Blue Ox base plate

John From Detroit

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Re: New cell phone booster review
« Reply #4 on: June 08, 2016, 05:24:39 PM »
I have bot a mag mount and a trucker.. The mag mount is on a steel plate bracketed to the rear.. I hit a low hanging branch and it is still there (just no longer mounted, it dangles) and I can put it back easily, from the ground no less with a long-reach tool I have (12 feet).

The Trucker.. Well it is on a removable pole..  I stow it in motion.


I really need to upgrade the hardware though.

Where I'm at.. Phone works, all by itself at the end of the RV park driveway... 20 feet into the park.. NO SIGNAL. (well not enough).
Nothing adds excitement like something that is none of your business
My Home is where I park it.

NY_Dutch

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Re: New cell phone booster review
« Reply #5 on: June 08, 2016, 05:36:19 PM »
We use our data service extensively while underway and the mag mount works well for us. I haven't knocked this one over yet, but I have others in the past. The way I have the wires anchored though, they can't go anywhere or dangle down at all. A quick trip up the ladder quickly sets them right when it does occur, usually at low speeds on campground roads.
Dutch
2001 GBM Landau 34' Class A
F53 Chassis, Triton V10, TST TPMS
2011 Toyota RAV4 4WD/Remco pump
ReadyBrute Elite tow bar/Blue Ox base plate

Sun2Retire

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Re: New cell phone booster review
« Reply #6 on: June 08, 2016, 05:54:27 PM »
If you're in the market for a quality cell booster that does what it says it does, I recommend giving the new MaxAmp some serious consideration.

I'm considering both cell and wifi boosters sometime in the not too distant future. My current plan is high gain directional antennas for both, my thought being that I'm really mostly interested in using them while stationary, and if I broke down in a thin area I could always deploy the directional to make the call. Either that or install both antennas and just switch when we're parked (if necessary).

Did you consider other boosters?
Scott
2005 Newmar Dutch Star 3810, Spartan, Cat C7 350
Eezrv TPMS, VMSpc, 800W Solar
2002 Dodge RAM 1500 Quad Cab
Stowmaster towbar & Brakemaster

NY_Dutch

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Re: New cell phone booster review
« Reply #7 on: June 08, 2016, 06:13:45 PM »
I'm considering both cell and wifi boosters sometime in the not too distant future. My current plan is high gain directional antennas for both, my thought being that I'm really mostly interested in using them while stationary, and if I broke down in a thin area I could always deploy the directional to make the call. Either that or install both antennas and just switch when we're parked (if necessary).

Did you consider other boosters?

I considered pretty much everything on the consumer market, Scott. On careful review though, the MaxAmp is the only amplifier currently available that meets all of the new FCC booster requirements, and also offers the extended inside repeater coverage that fits our usage. As I said in my review, we did have a WeBoost (Wilson) Drive 4G-M that we used last winter, but the limitations it presented were an ongoing irritant. The WeBoost also does not meet the new FCC requirements, and their temporary certification could be revoked at any time. I should add that the MaxAmp is offered by a fellow RV'er that's well versed in our communications travel needs.
Dutch
2001 GBM Landau 34' Class A
F53 Chassis, Triton V10, TST TPMS
2011 Toyota RAV4 4WD/Remco pump
ReadyBrute Elite tow bar/Blue Ox base plate

Sun2Retire

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Re: New cell phone booster review
« Reply #8 on: June 08, 2016, 07:06:09 PM »
The WeBoost also does not meet the new FCC requirements

What is the requirement it can't meet, what's changed?
Scott
2005 Newmar Dutch Star 3810, Spartan, Cat C7 350
Eezrv TPMS, VMSpc, 800W Solar
2002 Dodge RAM 1500 Quad Cab
Stowmaster towbar & Brakemaster

NY_Dutch

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Re: New cell phone booster review
« Reply #9 on: June 08, 2016, 09:39:56 PM »
I don't know all of the technical details, but I do know that the WeBoost products were granted a temporary certification last year when they claimed there was a good of the public need for their boosters until they could develop compliant versions. I am given to understand that the MaxAmp is the only booster so far that has met all of the new requirements. One requirement is that the amplifier automatically turn down the gain as the available signal levels go up, and another that requires the booster to shut down on all bands if an oscillation issue is detected on any band, usually due to incorrect antenna separation. There's lots more to the new testing requirements, and you can try to make sense of it here:

KDB_935210_Signal_Booster_Measurements.pdf
Dutch
2001 GBM Landau 34' Class A
F53 Chassis, Triton V10, TST TPMS
2011 Toyota RAV4 4WD/Remco pump
ReadyBrute Elite tow bar/Blue Ox base plate

Gary RV_Wizard

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Re: New cell phone booster review
« Reply #10 on: June 09, 2016, 09:06:03 AM »
Hmm. My Wilson/Weboost 4G does both of those things, and it's not even the latest model.

According to this 2014 news article, Wilson (aka Weboost brand) had the first booster to win FCC approval under the new requirements.
https://www.weboost.com/news/press-release/wilson-electronics-achieves-the-industrys-first-fcc-certification-for-a-consumer-cellular-signal-booster/

They still sell the older (and cheaper) 3G models that do not meet the new standards. Maybe they got an exemption for those? They wouldn't invest money in upgrading those, but there might still be a "public need" for 3G equipment in some areas.
Gary
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Gary Brinck
Summers: Black Mountain, NC
Home: Ocala National Forest, FL

NY_Dutch

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Re: New cell phone booster review
« Reply #11 on: June 09, 2016, 04:06:02 PM »
The exemption was for their current models, Gary. They still have nothing that meets all the new specs. That exemption could be pulled at any time the FCC decides to.
Dutch
2001 GBM Landau 34' Class A
F53 Chassis, Triton V10, TST TPMS
2011 Toyota RAV4 4WD/Remco pump
ReadyBrute Elite tow bar/Blue Ox base plate

JDOnTheGo

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Re: New cell phone booster review
« Reply #12 on: June 09, 2016, 04:14:49 PM »
I'll probably get in trouble for this but....

I think the whole FCC thing is just hype to scare people.  Once you have the product and it works for you, who cares.  Yes, some will cite laws but I drove into the city the other day and their were hundreds, maybe thousands of people ignoring the laws.  I think it may even be legal to ignore the laws now but I'm not entirely sure.  I would bet that many of us own microwave ovens and other appliances that no longer "meet the regs".
« Last Edit: June 09, 2016, 05:00:33 PM by JFNM »
JD - Full timer out west
1998 MCI 102 EL3 Revolution | 2010 Wrangler (daJeep) | 650 Watts Solar
My Adventures

Sun2Retire

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Re: New cell phone booster review
« Reply #13 on: June 09, 2016, 05:12:58 PM »
I'll probably get in trouble for this but....

Google and Verizon have triangulated your position JD, and forwarded it to the feds. They'll be there shortly...
Scott
2005 Newmar Dutch Star 3810, Spartan, Cat C7 350
Eezrv TPMS, VMSpc, 800W Solar
2002 Dodge RAM 1500 Quad Cab
Stowmaster towbar & Brakemaster

JDOnTheGo

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Re: New cell phone booster review
« Reply #14 on: June 09, 2016, 05:14:35 PM »
Google and Verizon have triangulated your position JD, and forwarded it to the feds. They'll be there shortly...

HA!!!  Probably several alphabet groups on their way!!!   ;) :)
JD - Full timer out west
1998 MCI 102 EL3 Revolution | 2010 Wrangler (daJeep) | 650 Watts Solar
My Adventures

Terry A. Brewer

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Re: New cell phone booster review
« Reply #15 on: June 11, 2016, 03:05:26 PM »
Dutch

What is the size of the indoor antenna, couldn't find it on the website.

Where did you mount it , I don't have 7' ceilings and don't want to bump my head.

NY_Dutch

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Re: New cell phone booster review
« Reply #16 on: June 11, 2016, 09:46:30 PM »
The inside antenna is only 3-1/2" high, Terry. I have mine mounted just about in the center of our coach fore and aft, but offset towards the passenger side for better coverage outside in the patio area. Mounting it off center also let me route the cable out of sight through cabinets to the amplifier.
« Last Edit: June 11, 2016, 09:49:13 PM by NY_Dutch »
Dutch
2001 GBM Landau 34' Class A
F53 Chassis, Triton V10, TST TPMS
2011 Toyota RAV4 4WD/Remco pump
ReadyBrute Elite tow bar/Blue Ox base plate

 

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