We live in an RV, we have 3 computers, all laptops without an external antenna connector.
We travel, and constantly find RV parks where the signal is week and fluxuating all the time. Sometimes to the point of no signal, it makes working the internet very difficult.
My question, and what I'm thinking. To accomodate multpile laptops, get a high gain directional exterior antenna, mount it to the RV. Run a cable from there to a central interior location, then attach a short basic Wifi antenna like you might find on a wireless router or PCLAN card to the cable and mount it inside. I'm wondering if this would work to make our RV more of a "Hot spot" for our laptops.
Yesterday I got fed up with getting cut off every 30 seconds, so I took a Linksys router antenna and a piece of my wife's jewelry wire to connect it to the bedroom TV coax cable. I know it is a complete wavelength mismatch and the impedence is probably wrong, but it seems to have improved my connection to the point of almost tolerable.
I'm thinking if I can amplify the signal with a high gain antenna, and wire that signal into the RV and focus that through a typical Wifi antenna, we should get a stronger and cleaner signal that our built in laptop antenna's can get happy with. I need to know if this will work before spending the money on parts.
If I understand you correctly you are wanting to connect an antenna to both ends of a peace of cable as your antenna setup.
Sorry but that cannot work.
Try this for a scenario: Get a wireless Access Point (AP) with 2 antenna connections (eg. Linksys WAP54G). Connect your highgain antenna to 1 side and leave the original antenna on the other. I can't guarantee this will work as I don't know how the diversity works on Linksys devices.
If you were to hardwire (connect via ethernet) the laptops to the Access Point and just run a single highgain antenna that will work.
FYI, you can get highgain >12db omni directional antenna that may be more suited to your RV. This will eliminate the need to turn the antenna to find the signal.
New question... I'm looking at and reading reviews of several products. My wife and I both have acer laptops and we need signal gain in this campground. At night we have a good signal, but in the daytime it is weak, and sometimes non existant.
1) We have a pretty direct line of site to 90% of the front office, maybe 150 yds away, and have been told there are two other antennas and the general location.
2) During the day the signal fluxiates between 2 bars and no signal at all.
3) We must keep our solution to $80 or less if possible.
I'm reading lots of reviews, looking at the Buffalo PCMCIA network adapter combined with the Airstation antenna, a super USB external antenna with 20dBi chipset gain and 4.5 dBi antenna, and the plastic hawking dish usb antenna, there is also a directional Buffalo antenna out.
I'm thinking the super USB is out because with only a 4.5 gain antenna, I think when I have no signal, a 20dBi gain would do nothing.
The one I'm presently leaning towards is the Hawking Dish antenna.
What are your opinions, or given the same situation for you, what would you do with the budget. I have even considered making my own cantenna or yagi, but would still have to adapt it to my computer, and although I've done a lot with computers, this is an area I've not tinkered in, and could sure use some advice or help. Is there something else out there that I've not found?
Thanks in advance for any thoughts and opinions. We do need a solution as we work on the internet, so the connection is important.
Forgot to mention, at this point my thoughs are to use my computer as the interent connection for the others, and I'll be hardwired to our home network while the other laptops cab connect to the internet through my computer using our wireless network.
Seems confusing to me, but whatever it takes. The internet connection is 1.5Mbps so network speed is not the issue.
I'll have to file that one away for future reference. At this point we have a tight budget, and yesterday discovered a crack in the galley grey water tank making our budget even tighter.
Your solution for the repeater is $117, and it states that the unit requires an injector which costs another $25, and a 15 dBi omni antenna is yet another $56, bringing me into the $200 ball park.
While the solution is great for future reference, it is well beyond our budget.
I'm narrowing down my solutions at this point is to network all our computers, mine via cable and the others through our router, and get a high gain wireless antenna for my computer and use it as the server to the rest of the computers. Cost for a small directional high gain usb antenna, about $50.
Assumung you are associated with the manufacturer, (your user name as well as the name of the website are the same), if you would like to donate one of those for review purposes, I would gladly write about it's effectiveness on our RV website and our other websites, as well as on many forums, and would gladly link back to you using whatever ancor text you want.
We purchased a USB adapter with a high gain antenna, with the same results we were already getting, however...
We are going to move to another campground. I spoke extensively with the owner about our need to have internet, since it is our income. He explained how their system is set up, and I am unfamiliar with the brand of wireless AP they are using, it comes from Quest, the phone company in Colorado. Anyway, he has other people who are not in the wifi range so he is looking for solutions, and suggested maybe I could help him with the set up. Not knowing anything about their current equiptment, I'm not sure I want to go dancing around with their internal settings, but if your new EnGenius universal repeater does what I'm reading it does, this could be a great solution, not only from the standpoint of setting up repeaters to spread access through the campground, but if they ever have to change IP's and equipment, the units you suggessted could be a realy saver.
Can you give me a little more info, and if we need help in configuring it do they provide a good support staff, and what if, (heaven forbid), it doesn't work the way it is supposed to with their setup? So, even though your unit wasn't right for me, it may fit the bill for other needs here soon.
Thanks for the advice and for bringing this item to my attention, I've been fighting a nightmare with the set up they have here.