Signal Boost Options for Laptop


Looking for WiFi signal boost options (antenna?) for Dell Laptop w/
internal wireless adapter.
Thx
Chip L
Reply to
Chip L
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"Chip L" hath wroth:
Well, the easiest way is to purchase either an external USB wireless radio, or a PCMCIA/CardBus radio with an external antenna connector. Just remember to disable the internal MiniPCI wireless card.
You can also install an external antenna on a MiniPCI wireless card if you don't mind either drilling the case, or sneaking a pigtail through the exhaust holes. Most MiniPCI cards use Hirose u-FL connectors for the antenna.
Find a u-FL to SMA, TNC, or N connector pigtail. |
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(CA178-RTNCB-UFL-6) |
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(near bottom)
The u-FL connector goes to the connector on the MiniPCI card labeled "main" and not the one labeled "aux".
Here's an example of how it's done (if you don't mind destroying what's left of your warranty and resale value). |
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more laptop butchery, er... modifications: |
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I'll leave it to your imagination as to the selection of antenna and mounting arrangement.
Reply to
Jeff Liebermann
I appreciate your response, Jeff.
In general, are the external USB/MiniPCI wireless adapters more sensitive (better reception) than the built in Wireless adapters? I really don't want to mod my box - its brand new. Was looking for something i could install in open ports (USB/minIPCI).
Thx
Jeff Liebermann wrote:
Reply to
Chip L
"Chip L" hath wroth:
I think you mean USB/MiniPCI. You probably alreay have a MiniPCI wireless card is inside the laptop. This is a difficult call. The official specification for receive sensitivity tend to follow the chipset manufacturers published specifications. Reality is always worse. RX sensitivity can be ruined by a badly implimented diversity switch and cross circuit board RF traces. My guess(tm) is that the radio parts are largely the same between the various chipsets, but the implimentation and board layout vary radically. I can't proclaim that one or the other style are better or worse than the others. For example, this Compaq laptop wireless antenna sucks: |
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to the location of the antenna on the laptop hinge instead of up high in the LCD section. In addition, USB dongles tend to have very small and inefficient antennas: |
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antenna is the gold plated PIFA antenna on polysulfone. Most antennas are worse.
I think you mean USB/PCMCIA. You probably alreay have a MiniPCI wireless card is inside the laptop.
I won't recommend anything specific. There are some PCMCIA cards available with external antenna connectors.
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a few USB dongles come with external antenna connectors. Most must be modified to accept an antenna connector. The advantage of USB is that it can be located up high and away from obstructions without stiff coax cable or complex modifications.
Reply to
Jeff Liebermann
I travel a great bit, and connect to APs "across the spectrum." Have most luck with a USB unit with the RF in the unit on the end of a five foot USB cable. There are units, i.e., SMC which are "high power," but sitting down in the PCMCIA slot are at a handicap even with an external antenna. The only useful locations for the internal units are at, i.e., Starbucks, Mcdonalds, Wayport, Boingo, etal. However, even with the USB external units, software drives one up the wall. Experience in connecting to weak signals IMHOP is probably worth more than power. At one time years ago there was a Hawking unit with good software, and connected exceptionally well, but disappeared from market and can't find one anywhere. By the way, there are some computers out there that put the Wi-Fi and Bluetooth antennas up in the sides of the LCD display which should help with internal units. Luck!!!
Reply to
Jack Daniels
At one time years ago there was a
Regarding the Hawking, they have a newer better one at
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Hi-GainT USB Wireless-G Dish Adapter
Reply to
Peter Pan
I have both that 8dBi adapter and the older 6 dBi HWU54D. I have tested them side-by-side accessing marginal signals several times. The only difference in performance I could find is that the HWU8DD is more difficult to use with a weak signal because it is more directional. Once it locates the signal, it performs identically with the HWU54D, in my experience.
I used both to connect to a network 2.2 miles away, over water, for several weeks. With their 200 mw output power, they are 6-7 times more powerful than standard WiFi adapters. That doesn't matter if you are close to the network access point, but for attaching to distant networks they are superb.
Reply to
Dave Rudisill

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