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  1. #1
    New Lounger
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    Question Increasing wireless range

    I can't find a better place to put this, so here goes.

    I often go to a cabin where I have cell phone service, but no wifi. The cell phone service is just OK, not a great signal.

    I tether my Windows laptop to my cell phone using bluetooth. It works, although a bit slow due to the weak phone signal. Now, I've seen the cute use of an aluminum can formed around a wifi antenna to focus it and increase its directionality and range.

    My question is: Would it help to create a similar, but slightly larger, surround for my cell phone to direct and focus the signal in the direction of the cell tower? (I can locate the cell tower on a map)

    Thanks for input or ideas!

  2. #2
    Super Moderator RetiredGeek's Avatar
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    Dro,

    I don't know if you're on a tight budget or not but there are a lot of signal boosters available. Here's what I found on Amazon alone. HTH

    BTW: I moved this to Networking where it is more likely to get the maximum exposure to people with answers on this topic.
    Last edited by RetiredGeek; 2013-12-30 at 10:43.
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    dro (2013-12-30)

  4. #3
    New Lounger
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    Thank you! I'll browse those. I'd still enjoy trying the zero cost do-it-yourself option if anyone has any experience with it and thinks it will work.

    Happy New Year

  5. #4
    4 Star Lounger SpywareDr's Avatar
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    Keep in mind that Bluetooth 1.1 runs at a mere 125kB/s, 2.0 at 375kB/s and 3.0-4.0 at 3MB/s, (theoretical).

  6. #5
    Platinum Lounger
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    Plenty of results for DIY cell phone booster in your favourite search engine.

    cheers, Paul

  7. #6
    New Lounger
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    Good to remember about bluetooth speeds! Thanks!

    To Paul, location Earth, or more specifically the UK (most likely): Yes, I've seen all kinds, but I figured the forum at Windows Secrets would be higher quality advice as to what actually works. Most interested in the tin can approach, but the tin foil over cardboard also should work.

  8. #7
    4 Star Lounger SpywareDr's Avatar
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    The "tinfoil over cardboard" didn't help at all here with WiFi. It was -64 dBm with or without it.

  9. #8
    Bronze Lounger DrWho's Avatar
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    There's WI-FI and then there's wi-fi.
    Let me comment only on the WI-FI for computers.

    Laptops, for instance usually come with Wireless G and a built in, low gain antenna.

    But often, where I live I want something better, so I plug in a Wireless N-300 device with a high gain antenna on it,
    and I can pull in hot spots from hundreds of feet away.



    This is my little Netbook, with an external WI-FI N-300 device plugged in and a 9db gain antenna attached.

    I've spent a lot of time and money trying to increase my Wi-Fi reception, both incoming and outgoing.

    This outside antenna connected to my Linksys router, pushes four bars of signal down the road about 1000' to a friend's house.
    He uses a high gain antenna like the one on my Netbook.



    On the internet, are many DIY signal enhancers available. I've even tried a few myself, with varying results.

    Good Luck!
    The Doctor
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  10. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by dro View Post
    I can't find a better place to put this, so here goes.

    I often go to a cabin where I have cell phone service, but no wifi. The cell phone service is just OK, not a great signal.
    I tether my Windows laptop to my cell phone using bluetooth. It works, although a bit slow due to the weak phone signal. Now, I've seen the cute use of an aluminum can formed around a wifi antenna to focus it and increase its directionality and range.

    My question is: Would it help to create a similar, but slightly larger, surround for my cell phone to direct and focus the signal in the direction of the cell tower? (I can locate the cell tower on a map)

    Thanks for input or ideas!
    First try to connect your Phone to computer using USB cable to tether. It is better than connecting by Bluetooth. I do not think by using aluminum can, you can improve phone signal like what you saw with Wi-Fi antenna. Answer to your problem is signal booster.
    Last edited by colex; 2014-02-24 at 09:54.

  11. #10
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    I'm using NETGEAR 'stuff' - a main D6200 DSL Modem Router and a WN2000RPT Range Extender - these are about 35 yards (32 metres) apart but transmitting through 2 glass panes and any outside weather there may be.
    Reception is variable from nil to good - no obvious variables identifiable.
    NETGEAR tell me that neither of these bits of equipment can be connected to directional or any other larger antennae, and I cannot afford to replace both these items - purchased within the last year - not returnable because there are no faults - they work to some extent.

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