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I'm looking to buy new antennas, and have a few questions.

Discussion in 'Cisco/Linksys Wireless Routers' started by Soylent, Jun 26, 2005.

  1. Soylent

    Soylent Network Guru Member

    I'm having difficulty getting a good signal 3 rooms away from the router, so I'm thinking about buying new antennas. I have the WRT54G with the factory installed rubber ducky antennas.

    First, will the new antennas cause *more* interference with 2.4 ghz phones? (Can't get rid of phones... room-mates :-( )

    Second, does the router supply enough power to the antennas on its own? I've heard that I'll need to boost the transmit power...won't that risk burning out the router?

    Third, if I buy a directional antenna, will it interfere less with the 2.4 ghz phones (if I point it directly at the wall at my PC's general direction)?

    Or should I just screw it all and buy a Linksys signal repeater/range extender?

    Thanks for any help in advance!
  2. u3gyxap

    u3gyxap Network Guru Member

    The antennas will not do anything for the interference. As long as you have 2.4GHz devices, you will get interference. The best is to get rid of the phones, and use 900MHz or something like that.
    The router has enough power. Why don't you try to increase it, before buying anything, it may help you.
  3. 4Access

    4Access Network Guru Member

    Re: I'm looking to buy new antennas, and have a few question

    Are you worried about the phones causing interference with the Wi-Fi or are you actually having problems with the Wi-Fi causing interference with the phones?

    No, you won't need to boost the TX power. But if you haven't done that already it might be worth a shot to see if that alone will solve your range problems. Lots of people run with their TX power tweaked a bit higher. I've run my WRT54Gv1 @ 42mW (default is 28mW) for months now without any problems. Some people run it much higher as well although they do speculate it may shorten the life of the radio. (I've never heard of anyone actually burning out a WRT.)

    Yes it should, unless of course someone stands in the path where the the antenna is pointed, or the phone's base station is located in the path where the antenna is pointed.

    Also before you go out and buy a directional antenna I suggest you take a look at FreeAntennas.com. These often work very well!

    If you decide to go this route I strongly encourage you to consider simply purchasing another WRT and installing custom firmware on your routers. When combined with custom firmware the WRTs can do everything (and MUCH more) that the range extenders can. Not to mention they are cheaper! ;)
  4. jagboy

    jagboy Network Guru Member

    i have a WRT54G with the high gain antennas from linksys and they are alright. they get the job done pretty good. on a scale of 1-10 10 being the best they would be a 8.

    but what i notcied is that i have a wrt54gS v2 and it as better signal than the WRT54G v2 with the high gain antennas. and they are located right next to each other.
  5. Soylent

    Soylent Network Guru Member

    Re: I'm looking to buy new antennas, and have a few question

    Thanks for answering, you've been a big help.

    As for the 2.4ghz phones, the router is causing audible interference with the phones. I can actually hear strange noises from the phone, and I need to unplug the router to clear it up. Is that normal?
  6. 4Access

    4Access Network Guru Member

    While I wouldn't say it's common in my experience, unfortunately it's not surprising. One thing you can try is changing the channel your router uses and see if channel 1 or 11 work any better. Cordless phones usually also have a way to change channels as well which you should give a shot if you haven't already.
  7. 4Access

    4Access Network Guru Member

    Interesting! :-k I assume you have the TX power set the same on them? Also you haven't forced the WRT54G to use a specific Transmission Rate while the GS is allow to auto select have you? Another possibility is there's more intereference on the channel the WRT54G is using. Have you tried trading channels and seeing if the problem reverses itself?
  8. jagboy

    jagboy Network Guru Member

    everything is the smae on the routers. the xmit power on both is set to about 120 it is set to auto tramsition.

    i wil try to change the channels and see if that make s diff.
  9. ybbmadysu

    ybbmadysu Network Guru Member

    I added the 9dbi antennas from CompUSA. CLICK HERE TO SEE I bought 2 of them and mounted them on a fiberglass pole inside my home. Without turning up the TX power, my signal is 15-20% 3 houses down the street. I increased TX to 50mW, now its 30-35%. I used KisMAC to test sig strength. NO these are not cheap small homes.

    if you are not trying to cover a full 360 degrees, try this antenna CLICK HERE The neighbor across the street is using one, that sig in my home is 50-60%, with linksys firmware.

    Hope this info helps
  10. 4Access

    4Access Network Guru Member

    NICE!!! :D Now when you say 3 houses down the street are you standing the the middle of the road or are you actually inside their house when taking your reading? I've been conisdering getting one of these and mounting it on a pole attached to my chimney on the roof!

    On the other hand this antenna looks really promising as well! Wouldn't it be sweet to get a usable signal a few blocks away?! I might actually be able to sit at the park and connect to my own wireless network! :p Anyway thanks for the reports!
  11. ybbmadysu

    ybbmadysu Network Guru Member

    I did test INSIDE the houme in his living room. Remember though, if you mount it to the roof you will be giving service to all your neighbors. Also check with your ISP, sharing your connection with other could violate your agreement.

    See Freeantennas.com, the author of that website offers really SIMPLE plans to make your wireless more efficient for very little money.

    Good Luck
  12. ybbmadysu

    ybbmadysu Network Guru Member

    I mounted them inside my house, still works great, however I also increased my TX pwr.

    Ill try and take a photo of my WRT54G, I think I went a little overkill on the cooling (heatsinks on every ic and an 80mm high cfm fan w/dust filter).
  13. Soylent

    Soylent Network Guru Member

    I'm surprised at the cost of antennas. The linksys is $60-70, and that Hawkings is $100. BOth are more than the router itself.
  14. jagboy

    jagboy Network Guru Member

    that is why i think that if you want to checp sloution then go with

  15. ybbmadysu

    ybbmadysu Network Guru Member

    Yeah the cost of new antennas would suck. My retail discount was cost -10%. For both, I only paid $35.

    Freeantennas.com is a really good idea.
  16. jagboy

    jagboy Network Guru Member

    yeah i get real gain in the antennas from freeantennas.com

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