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Old 09-11-2014, 07:09   #46
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Re: Best marine WiFi antenna?

http://islandtimepc.com has great support and reasonably priced packaged setups for WiFi.

We use their system to improve connectivity in marinas with WiFi, and when in the Bahamas, to share a single Bahamas WiMAX account among our laptops and tablets.

I could've saved a few dollars by assembling my own setup, but the time saved and support were more valuable to me.


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Old 09-11-2014, 10:25   #47
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Re: Best marine WiFi antenna?

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The problem with paid WiFi is that you can only receive it in one spot. Or at best in selected marinas using the same system. Once you shove off, you're on your own and have to start all over again, and pay again.
This isn't the case in the Bahamas which is the reason I specifically mentioned them. Also now in the U.S., there are wifi services that cover broad areas. You pay once and have access where ever they have service. In the Bahamas, there is a wifi service that covers the entire Abacos. The external wifi is still invaluable for getting a good signal while in a marina where the wifi is free. Many of these wifi services have plans for a single day, week or month. Some even for a matter of hours. Chuck
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Old 09-11-2014, 11:07   #48
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Re: Best marine WiFi antenna?

https://activecaptain.com/newsletters/index.php

The newsletters have quite a bit of information, in addition to Chuck's valuable input.
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Old 09-11-2014, 13:04   #49
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Re: Best marine WiFi antenna?

It definitely depends on where you are cruising. We are currently living aboard in a marina on the Red Sea. The marina is surrounded by busy hotels and our 3G wireless service can't keep up. We have to revert to using WIFI. We'll save $25 a month and by using a booster.

In the summer we'll be cruising in Greece. WIFI is readily available just about everywhere, but you do need a booster. On the other hand we've had terrible experience with Greek wireless service. We'll save our money and stick to WIFI.

The Wire Booster that we're looking at also offers a model that will combine WIFI and 2/3/4G internet access. The best of both worlds.

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Old 09-11-2014, 13:32   #50
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AnchorageGuy View Post

This isn't the case in the Bahamas which is the reason I specifically mentioned them. Also now in the U.S., there are wifi services that cover broad areas. You pay once and have access where ever they have service. In the Bahamas, there is a wifi service that covers the entire Abacos. The external wifi is still invaluable for getting a good signal while in a marina where the wifi is free. Many of these wifi services have plans for a single day, week or month. Some even for a matter of hours. Chuck
That's good to know. Naturally, what works in one area might not necessarily be the best solution in another.
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Old 09-11-2014, 14:12   #51
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Re: Best marine WiFi antenna?

When I was last in Greece the marinas were all offering wifi service from the same provider (at a price). Most marinas in Portland that have liveaboards include wifi service. There are many situations where a good wifi system on the boat will pay for itself over a winter. That said, there are few free wifi access points anymore. In Europe a few years ago I did encounter open wifi APs at restaurants, but these days in the US even the free wifi at restaurants requires a login. My local Dennys gives one hour for free and then you have to pay - no more buy a coffee and spend the afternoon surfing the web for free...

In some cases adding a cell modem can be very useful. I bought a 3G/2G GSM modem that plugs into my ExpressCard slot on my laptop - it has worked in quite a few countries (including the US with T-Mobile). It can use an external antenna, which I bought, so reception is rarely a problem. I no longer use it - I might be persuaded to part with it :-)

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Old 25-11-2014, 20:16   #52
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Re: Best marine WiFi antenna?

Ok so I bought the Alfa network setup with the wifi long range adapter and the wireless router. Can't get either to work at present. I don't have a CD drive on my tablet to install the driver and they have no windows 8.0!driver anyway. Does not seem to be anyway to work it with an iPad exceot I hope will work with the iPad if I can get a network selected via the tablet somehow.

Help!?!?!?
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Old 26-11-2014, 05:14   #53
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Re: Best marine WiFi antenna?

Which Alfa bits exactly did you get?

For my Alfa setup there are no drivers. I set mine up using just an Android tablet. On the router there is a web page. The IP address was 192.168.2.1. Connect your wi-fi to the Alfa first and then log in to that IP address with your web browser. User name was admin and password was admin. there was a tab on the web page called "easy setup". It's self explanatory.
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Old 26-11-2014, 05:18   #54
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Re: Best marine WiFi antenna?

I have the AWUSO36H and R36 I did go to that website and do the setup, but I don't see any list of available wifi on that page. I had a alpha extender 8 years ago with an older laptop, worked great. Still have it in fact, but nothing to work it with so bought the R36 and new extender.
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Old 26-11-2014, 05:47   #55
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Best marine WiFi antenna?

My guess is the location of the USB unit is not where it can reach any access points. Is the green light on the USB box on? Are there 3 lights on the Alfa router?

Take the whole setup to some place where you know there is wi-fi and do the "Site Survey" from the "Easy Setup" page to get it working. Then try it at the boat once you know it works. The antenna for the USB box will have to be outdoors in my experience. Ours is on the aft pulpit rail. Before that I would put the USB box outside through a hatch but that didn't work in the rain.

Here are the instructions from Alfa:

http://www.alfa.com.tw/faq_show.php?sn=5
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Old 26-11-2014, 06:13   #56
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Re: Best marine WiFi antenna?

Ok, I found the network listed and put in the password for a know network. It goes to the please wait a moment page forever. Once it got past that, but it kept flashing not connected in the status. The box mentioned I might need to upgrade the firmware on the devices? Did you do this? Seems like they would ship the new stuff with the new firmware. Anyway, may just return all this to Amazon.

Thanks for the help.
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Old 26-11-2014, 06:30   #57
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Re: Best marine WiFi antenna?

I did not upgrade firmware. I think what they ship now is current software. Don't give up yet. I have seen the flashing "connecting" message before. Usually when I see that it's because I did not use the "Easy Setup" feature. I tried to do it manually. In my experience the only way to get it to work is "Easy Setup". But some times the flashing connecting message is because the access point is just too far away. When this happens I sometimes can re-position the USB unit to get a stronger signal. Go have a cup of coffee and when I come back it's connected. Sometimes patience is a virtue.

What was the signal quality of the access point you selected? Anything less than 50% is dodgy. Typically 70% and above will work every time.
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Old 26-11-2014, 06:47   #58
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Thumbs down Re: Best marine WiFi antenna?

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Originally Posted by H3LlIoN View Post
I've had great luck with the WaveRV units from RadioLabs.
I bought from RadioLabs a coupe of years ago for my XP computer. When going for WIN8 it did not work. I tried calling RadioLabs many,many times. They do not answer and if leave a message they do not call back. All emails to them remains unanswered. I think RadioLabs is something to stay away from. Zero service and zero communication.
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Old 26-11-2014, 07:42   #59
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Re: Best marine WiFi antenna?

My signal is 88% for some reason after I gt to that last step to ad the extra security which I have disableed it gets hung up. After clicking done it will say please wait one moment forever.

Thanks for the help. If you read the Amazon reviews it seems some just don't work. I'll go back thru it all again. There are a lot of setting that can be changed but the directions give no indications of what each one should be.
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Old 26-11-2014, 09:51   #60
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Re: Best marine WiFi antenna?

When it gets to the end the router actually reboots. It drops your wifi connection. You have to wait for the local wifi to come back up.
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