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2.4Ghz antenna recommendations


Sparda
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I've moved in to a new place to live. It's an old residential home of some kind, it's main construct is concrete.

To supply every one with Internet access there are MIMO APs dotted around the place. It's cheaper then drilling holes for CAT5/6. Unfortunately the closets AP to where I am is through six or so concert walls.

I am using a WRT54GL v1.1 to connect to the AP and I put a couple of

on it which gets me a signal hovering around 8 to 15%.

Most of the time the connection is fine and usable, there is some packet loss, changing the default DNS to OpenDNS made a big difference (they are probably just using a consumer grate router to actually connect to the Internet and it's a bit over loaded). On occasion it does become unstable.

I'm guessing the main problem is my WRT picking up the transmission from the MIMO AP since the WRT has had it's transmitter boosted to the default 70mw of DD-WRT and it always reports the signal strength to be 15% or lower.

Does any one have a recommendation for a directional antenna that should get better results than the standard WRT54G antenna with a windsurfer on them?

The WRT has RP-TNC connectors for both antenna, so the replacement antenna should ideally use this connector so I don't have to get a SMA/BNC to TNC adapter.

Any thing up to £100 would be an expectable price.

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I'm not really sure what kind of connectors and all you would need, but site below has it all. And they'll even custom make you something.

http://www.fab-corp.com/

I've used the below style with good success. It's from an old Lucent Wavelan AP.

lucent.jpg

The plug directly into the old Orinoco Gold cards. And could probably be had on eBay for cheap.

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I think you'd be fine with an off-the-shelf type antenna. I've deployed wireless for college dorms with concrete walls like you are talking about and the APs have those same style antennas. Although this would depend greatly on the specifics of your walls. Can you see the signal at all with your laptop's OEM wireless card?

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News of slightly interesting:

I did further analysis (I opened airdump) before buying any thing. I discovered that all the Aps (which are about 8ft vertically from each other) were running on channel 6 and there are 4 of them.

I convinced the building manager (who knows nothing about computers) to let me have a crack at fixing it. They all have the default password set so it was easy. I turned off (permanently) the AP on the 2nd floor (there are four floors, ground, one, two and three), set the ground floor AP to channel one, first floor to seven and third floor to eleven.

It works much much MUCH better now, I still get the same percentage of signal, but there is much less interference.

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News of slight fail:

Turns out that most wireless devices are retarded, and want to always connect to the channel 1 AP even if the channel 11 AP has 80% strength and the channel 1 AP only has 10%. The exception to this are macs, they seem to connect to which ever is the strongest.

Now I'm open to suggestions as to what to do. Setting them all back to channel 6 will be epic fail. At the same time setting them to call separate channels is epic fail because the connecting devices are retarded (except macs).

I could give each one it's own SSID, but that is slight fail in my tests. I could get my computers to connect to the renamed AP fine, but computers running Vista can't do it apparently.

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News of slight fail:

Turns out that most wireless devices are retarded, and want to always connect to the channel 1 AP even if the channel 11 AP has 80% strength and the channel 1 AP only has 10%. The exception to this are macs, they seem to connect to which ever is the strongest.

Now I'm open to suggestions as to what to do. Setting them all back to channel 6 will be epic fail. At the same time setting them to call separate channels is epic fail because the connecting devices are retarded (except macs).

I could give each one it's own SSID, but that is slight fail in my tests. I could get my computers to connect to the renamed AP fine, but computers running Vista can't do it apparently.

What kind of APs are they?

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