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Cellular Booster - WiFi Booster Install...Done!


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Well I finally got the cover off my Toy Hauler and installed the WiFi Booster and the Cellular Booster. The project came out great and the performance is simply amazing!


I wrote a whole article about it on my web site as it has tons of photographs and too large to post here.


Let me know what you think!


Www.rvbprecision.com


IMG_1296-vi.jpg

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This evening I was out in the trailer playing with the new gadget and my various devices. I found the Cellular Booster is extremely sensitive to the distance between the phone and the indoor receiver antenna as the post suggested above.


Some tests I performed.


With the phone right up against the antenna I saw signal strength of -88 (lower the number the better)


One foot away from the antenna.... -92


Two feet away from the antenna.... -100


Four feet away from the antenna... -103


Six feet or more away from the antenna... -109


Cellular Booster turned off ... -111


This is a huge difference. These numbers are logarithmic. I haven't done the math but the difference between -88dB and -111dB is many hundreds improvement.


So, if you can't sit extremely close to the antenna, or actually tie it to the phone with a rubber band, you will not experience the best performance. If you are using your phone as a HotSpot or are actually using a HotSpot, I'd place it right on top of the antenna and use WiFi to connect to the phone or HotSpot. If you are using the phone to talk, I'd ties the phone to the antenna and then use a wired or BlueTooth headset to communicate.


Obviously, this limited range precludes anyone from using your cell booster unauthorized.


Hope this helps!

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Not knowing anything about actual signal strength other than bars on my phone I am confused. You say the lower the number the better but when you have the cell phone booster turned off you have the lowest number -111. What am I missing? I am not understanding these numbers at all.

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Maybe this will explain it better as it applies to signal strengths:

 

Absolute power of a signal is measured in wattage. The bel or decibel
system can only describe relative power- a gain of 3 dB means your
signal is 2 times as strong as it was before, but the dB scale doesn't
define where you're starting from or what your 'zero' is. So, we
specify dBm, indicating that our scale is relative to 1 milliWatt of
power. 0 dBm = 1 mW.

The reason you see negative values is that you're representing small
but positive numbers, on a logarithmic scale. In logarithms, the value
indicated represents an exponent... for example, under a log 10 scale,
a value of -2 represents 10 to the -2 power, which equals 0.01.
Likewise, a negative dBm means that you're applying a negative
exponent in your power calculations; 0 dBm equals 1 mW of power, so
-10 dBm equates to 0.1 mW, -20 dBm equates to 0.01 mW, and so forth.
It's a lot easier, and more useful in some calculations, to describe a
weak signal as -100 dBm as opposed to 0.0000000001 mW.

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DW Thanks Dutch, still drives me crazy. At least you gave me an explanation, most of the time people seem to somehow know what these numbers mean and understand them. Electricity has always baffled me. I ask questions but no one ever has an answer that makes sense or no answer. I even bought an electricity 101 book and it didn't help much. Maybe I just don't want to learn about electricity..................

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The instruction manual says your cell device must be within 18 inches of the interior antenna...

 

The reason for this is that it is a bandwidth repeater... If you are 10 feet away the your cell phone and booster start creating a bandwidth echo...

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I'm waiting as patiently as I can for Gord to start shipping the new MaxAmp RV systems that promise a much larger interior range than the WeBoost "Hershey bar" antenna. We used a WeBoost Drive 4G-M this past winter in a very weak area (Midway Campground) in southern FL this winter and it did keep us online, but the need to have the phones and hotspot so close to the inside antenna made it awkward to use.

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I'm waiting as patiently as I can for Gord to start shipping the new MaxAmp RV

The wait has been over a year or so now. :) So you do have a lot of patience's ^_^

I got tired of waiting 1 year and 1 month ago. When I got a Wilson booster for my 2015 summer trip, that has worked fine for me.

And a lot less $$$.

 

In 2 weeks will be time for my 2016 trip and still no MaxAmp RV's shipping. :(

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The wait has been over a year or so now. :) So you do have a lot of patience's ^_^

I got tired of waiting 1 year and 1 month ago. When I got a Wilson booster for my 2015 summer trip, that has worked fine for me.

And a lot less $$$.

 

In 2 weeks will be time for my 2016 trip and still no MaxAmp RV's shipping. :(

 

I do have the WeBoost to fill in while I'm waiting, and it does help. It's just not as convenient to use as I hope the MaxAmp will be. The MaxAmp also promises better overall performance, so I'm hanging in there...

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Chech out this article showing how to set up the numbers and explains the reading of the numbers and reading of data.

 

http://www.ubersignal.com/field-test-mode

 

The Numbers Explained

 

When connected to a 2G, 3G, or 4G H+ network, this numerical value is known as RSSI (Received Signal Strength Indicator) and is a method of measuring wireless signals. LTE networks on the other hand, are typically measured in RSRP (Reference Signal Receive Power), which is why LTE readings are sometimes very different from previous generation signal readings. To learn more about the difference between RSSI and RSRP, check out this blog post.

 

Decibel signal strengths will generally be double or triple digits, and it will be negative. Some phones dont show a negative sign so if your phone shows just a number such as 90, the signal strength is really -90. The closer the number is to zero, the better the reception, so -80 is a stronger signal than -90. The unit of measurement is the decibel (dB), which is a measure of the power of a signal. Similar to the volume of a stereo, the numerical value is really telling you exactly how loudly your phone is receiving the signal from your providers cellular network.

 

The decibel scale is not linear an increase of 3 dB corresponds a signal that is twice as strong while a 10 dB increase corresponds to a 10 times increase in signal strength. So an RSSI value of -60 is actually ten times stronger than an RSSI of -70, for example.

 

Having an accurate reading of your Received Signal Strength is crucial when youre assessing an area with the purpose of installing a possible signal boosting system. Being able to see exactly how strong your signal is, outside and inside your building, is essential in finding out how a cellular signal boosting system can improve your reception.

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I picked up a $39 Bluetooth headset for the cell phone. I simply placed the cell phone on top of the Hersey Bar antenna and walked around with the Bluetooth headset, Worked fantastic. Anywhere inside the RV and about 2z5' from the door of the RV. Can't complain about that!

 

The HotSpot works like it always did, but now sitting on top of the antenna I get amazing speed and reception.

 

I'm loving these two additions to my trailer!

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I picked up a $39 Bluetooth headset for the cell phone. I simply placed the cell phone on top of the Hersey Bar antenna and walked around with the Bluetooth headset, Worked fantastic. Anywhere inside the RV and about 2z5' from the door of the RV. Can't complain about that!

 

The HotSpot works like it always did, but now sitting on top of the antenna I get amazing speed and reception.

 

I'm loving these two additions to my trailer!

 

The Bluetooth headset works fine for phone calls, but leaving the phone near the Hershey bar doesn't work very well for all the other things my wife and I use our phones for.

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Dutch,

 

I used to use my phone for lots more than phone calls. But I found it hard to read and just too small to type etc. Now I use the phone as a hot spot and I WiFi to the phone with a cheap tablet. Currently I'm using an Amazon Fire tablet that you can buy for $49. Much easier to see and use. If I have lots of typing to do, I still use a laptop for a much better keyboard. This allows me to be much more mobile while in the camper. Hope this helps

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Dutch,

 

I used to use my phone for lots more than phone calls. But I found it hard to read and just too small to type etc. Now I use the phone as a hot spot and I WiFi to the phone with a cheap tablet. Currently I'm using an Amazon Fire tablet that you can buy for $49. Much easier to see and use. If I have lots of typing to do, I still use a laptop for a much better keyboard. This allows me to be much more mobile while in the camper. Hope this helps

 

Roy, as phone screens got bigger, I did just the opposite, pretty much abandoning the tablet in favor of the smartphone. I even use it as an ebook reader that automatically syncs reading positions with my laptop and tablet. Weather monitoring, events calendar, GPS/mapping functions, satellite dish aiming, banking, online shopping, and much more, are all done from my phone, particularly when my laptop is not readily available. My tablet now serves more as a "mini laptop" when the larger screen is better for visualizing something, but not enough to set up the 17" laptop.

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OP - Thanks for sharing your install! Glad this is all working well for you.

 

We're like Dutch, in a holding pattern, with a Sleek to hold us over. Does OK, and has helped at times. Only for Verizon.

 

Why wait for Maximun Signal? Two reasons: 1) Gord reports good coverage area, which is a plus for us as I hope to retain our current inside install location for electronics and internal antenna. Suspect we'll need to move the location of the external, and will wait to consult with Gord on which external antenna we should use with the unit. (Following Technomadia's ongoing antenna testing with interest:)!). 2) What Gord described was IMO classic intervention by lobbyist with influential DC representatives to hinder the process of bringing this unit to market. As I heard the insanity of what took place, it made me more convinced that I wanted to support the smaller company go well. (And yes, I do want to hear real world reports of usage. I have no reason to doubt Gord, but with all of the 'stuff' (read four letter word in place of stuff) that went on, I want to see how things go in the real world. As even though I've waited this long, I will not buy a product that does not support what I want. Fingers crossed, and no reason to not feel that it will do so:)!)

 

Best to all,

Smitty

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Yes the WiFi boosters can provide you with faster throughput. But, much depends upon how techie you want to get:)!

 

Some examples:

 

> Improving signal to/from strength, can help throughput

> Being able to changed around to different park Access Points, can help throughput. (Sometimes the strongest Access Point may have he highest traffic. Going to a different Access Point in the park, even at a weaker signal, may yield more throughput if that Access Point is not carrying as much traffic.)

 

I've never used the OP's ALFA unit, but know they have a good reputation. The WiFiRanger also have products that work well in RV's.

 

 

Best to you,

Smitty

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I too have been looking at various WIFI boosters. Does the strength of the signal increase the bandwidth available to those using a WIFI booster? I seem to get decent signal strength at many RV Parks, but throughput is often slow.

For wifi it "depends" a lot on how fast the originating backhaul is. And how loaded the system is. To find out if a booster will help, take your laptop close to the AP that you are trying to "improve" access to. Then run speedtest. What you get is the fastest you will see with a better antenna/radio back at your RV site. And of course, that changes during the day depending on loading of the AP, and the total system.

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