Wireless Router signal strength

  Silkman999 16:33 17 May 2006
Locked

We have a BT 1800HG router that transmits broadband to one of three machines in the house (2 laptops and a PC). The PC has a USB adapter (BT version) to pick up the signal but the signal strength is either very low or low. Does anyone know if it's possible to buy a router with a stronger signal than the one we have? Moving it nearer the other machines isn't an option. Thanks for any advice

  ade.h 16:57 17 May 2006

I guess you've already read my advice in the other thread regarding router placement and the running of USB adapters. If there is not much that you can do to move the router, buying a new one is very unlikely to improve the situation, with the possible exception on a MIMO system.

Multi-in/Multi-out is not to be confused with boosted/pre-n systems; it uses three or more aerials to split the signal and - like pre-n - requires a proprietary adapter to make full use of the added feature. Danoh uses a Belkin MIMO router with a Linksys MIMO PCMCIA card successfully, though it is normally recommended that you stay within a brand to be safe.

MIMO may give you some improvement, but you should work to optimise your current setup (router placement, USB adapter usage, booster aerials perhaps) before committing extra to expense.

  Silkman999 17:56 17 May 2006

I'd wondered about booster cables. Do you have any recommendations and do they affect the transmission speed?
Thanks again

  Danoh 20:19 17 May 2006

Silkman999;
"booster" aerials (not cables) increases the amount of radio signals sent and received.

They would be required on both your router and PC with poor reception, as each one needs to send and receive radio signals over the longer distance.
Range is increased but not transmission speed or data throughput.

I don't have any personal experience with any to make a recommendation.
However the physics are based simply on physically larger aerials and the gain in signal strength measured in decibels (dB), usually quoted for products.
Standard aerials are 1 – 2 dB with “booster” aerials 3-9 dB.
The FAQ section on this site click here provides some useful information

N/B
Hi there, ade.h! My Linksys MIMO is actually a PCI adapter in a desktop PC rather then a PCMCIA in a laptop ~ otherwise, extremely well remembered for the rest!! :-)

  ade.h 21:29 17 May 2006

90% right! Funny how I can remember that, but important day to day stuff has to be written down or else...

Anyway, enough about my flaky... er... what was I talking about?

  Danoh 23:52 17 May 2006

LOL, ade.h!!

Silkman999;
rsinbad had great results with a replacement higher-gain aerial for his Netgear router click here
If I remember, he uses it to be able to communicate with 2 of his boats from a shore-based cabin/house!! (no obstructions, line-of-sight, I guess!)
It’s £ 15 each from Maplins click here

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