Cruisers Forum
 


Join CruisersForum Today

Reply
 
Thread Tools Rate Thread Display Modes
Old 10-03-2015, 14:40   #1
Registered User
 
Clipper4730's Avatar

Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: Keystone CO
Boat: 50 Bene
Posts: 216
Best WiFi booster

Hey yall just curious as to what your favorite wifi booster might be. About to take the plunge and purchase one for our Beneteau 50, just wanted to get a few opinions.

Thanks Will
__________________

__________________
Clipper4730 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-03-2015, 15:23   #2
Registered User

Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Pickering Ontario
Boat: 1995 hunter 430
Posts: 329
Re: Best WiFi booster

__________________

__________________
Navicula is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-03-2015, 15:25   #3
Registered User

Join Date: Dec 2013
Location: Rogoznica, Croatia
Boat: Bavaria Cruiser 40
Posts: 619
Images: 16
Re: Best WiFi booster

Depends on what you are wanting to do with it? If all you want to do is extend the range of a wifi signal then things like the 3G/4G Mifi units will do the job. I'm using a Huawei unit right now to extend the range of my wifi signal from the front room of the flat right through to the back room. Full signal strength and quick with it.

Just an idea and you can always switch to the 3G/4G signal when out of range of a wifi signal.
__________________
kas_1611 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-03-2015, 15:30   #4
Registered User

Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Akron, Ohio
Boat: Bristol 29(1967)
Posts: 598
Re: Best WiFi booster

In America, most libraries have open WIFI available for anyone ... not just actual patrons.

There are also other WIFI's all over.

My small city(population 14,000 or so) has free WIFI all through the downtown area.

Where I dock, the library is 1200-1300 feet away and I can see the building from my boat. I could be nice to have an antenna or something that would grab that signal.
__________________
SURV69 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-03-2015, 15:38   #5
Registered User

Join Date: Dec 2013
Location: Rogoznica, Croatia
Boat: Bavaria Cruiser 40
Posts: 619
Images: 16
Re: Best WiFi booster

There are so called "hi gain" wifi antennae available but I've never heard of one that could pick up a signal from that distance even if you do have direct line of sight. Especially when you think that in some areas you can't connect to the wifi router in the next room due to poor signal strength (airports seem to be particularly prone to this).

I'd be interested to hear any results as there's a free wifi on the other side of the bay from our marina which would be great to access instead of using 3G or the marina's expensive wifi.
__________________
kas_1611 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-03-2015, 15:58   #6
Registered User
 
BlueBuddha's Avatar

Join Date: Nov 2014
Location: Wolverine Country
Boat: Lagoon 42
Posts: 323
Images: 1
Re: Best WiFi booster

I recently got an Alfa network card extender for our cruising. I used it last week during a sail in Florida. While at the Marina, I was able to connect to an open signal several blocks away and I got great reception (without it I could only reach 3 nearby closed signals). I was not able to use it at anchor because after we left the marina my mac died and the inverter wasn't working . I specifically got the AWUS036NHR V.2, but that's because it worked with my Mac OS (there are other models). I also know you can use an external alfa antena to extend the reach even more. I've read that the wireap is even better but is a lot more expensive. The Wirie AP+: Long Range Boat WiFi and RV WiFi

Best wishes, bb
__________________
BlueBuddha is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-03-2015, 16:11   #7
Registered User
 
zboss's Avatar

Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: On a boat
Boat: Cabo Rico 38
Posts: 3,426
Re: Best WiFi booster

Any of the Ubiquiti (BitStorm, Wirie, Radiolabs, etc.) or Grove based access points will do a good job. The software that runs on them is often customized but there are times when I miss my original Ubiquiti router.

These bullet-type access points can be connected physically to a wide variety of antennas but the ones that are shipped with the AP work well. Although you are on a boat, there are times when you could benefit from a directional antenna, like when you are in a slip or when wind/current is coming from the same direction for a long while, because you will get even better reception and be able to cut through more noise.

I like the Bitstorm because it uses both a wireless router and an access point, so all my wireless devices can connect simultaneously. The other advantage is being able to reboot/reset/configure the remote AP from the router.
__________________
zboss is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-03-2015, 18:41   #8
Senior Cruiser

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: between the devil and the deep blue sea
Boat: a sailing boat
Posts: 17,314
Re: Best WiFi booster

We are using a plain wifi extender wired into a flat panel antenna. It works OK. However, it refuses to extend some networks (say 1 out of 10).

I would try a bullet styled / ethernet out / thing wired into a plain wifi router. Hoping this set up is less problematic to control on iffy and offy networks.

b.
__________________
barnakiel is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-03-2015, 19:07   #9
Registered User
 
Clipper4730's Avatar

Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: Keystone CO
Boat: 50 Bene
Posts: 216
Re: Best WiFi booster

Thanks guys and gals great info. I guess I shoujd have been more specific. We just want to be able to connect a router to a signal booster ie we want to reach signals further away. Some of the systems seem to just boost yor own signal so that other devices can use your own provided data. Anyway looking at the Rogue Wave device or the Wirie ap+. Any one use the Wirie. Looks like it would be pretty easy to set up just need a power supply.

Thanks again
Will
__________________
Clipper4730 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-03-2015, 20:09   #10
Registered User

Join Date: Jan 2009
Boat: Tartan 37 #6
Posts: 326
Re: Best WiFi booster

Check out the IslandTime system,Marine PC's & WiFi by IslandTime PC. I am tec.illiterate but i manage mine ok. Have mine wired to onboard router so the boat is 'wireless'
__________________
steamgoat is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-03-2015, 21:27   #11
Registered User

Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: Miami
Boat: Shannon 38
Posts: 37
Re: Best WiFi booster

If you want to go the DIY route, we have had good results with putting together a Ubiquiti bullet system. Price was about 50% of the commercial versions, and as with everything on a boat if you DIY, you will be able to troubleshoot it yourself while cruising.

The important part is to use a PPOE (power over ethernet module) to power the external bullet wifi radio + antenna with 12V via the same Cat 5 cable that transmits the data to your wireless router down below.

Also, it is nice to have a wireless router that use 12V as well. We found a Belkin N150 that uses a 120-12V power supply at WalMart for cheap

I have attached some photos of the parts when I was bench testing the system.

We have had good results with the system, (1 mile + range is doable) but of course the real challenge will be finding open Wifi spots.

If you are cruising in the Bahamas, we had relatively good luck using the Batelco wireless pre-paid plans for voice and for data. Don't expect to stream videos,but for low-bandwidth uses it is perfectly serviceable. We were able to get weather via smartphone 10-15 miles offshore of Chub Cay!
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	wpid-IMG_20111203_170038.jpg
Views:	319
Size:	35.5 KB
ID:	98692   Click image for larger version

Name:	wpid-IMG_20111203_170104.jpg
Views:	278
Size:	25.5 KB
ID:	98693  

Click image for larger version

Name:	wpid-IMG_20111203_170125.jpg
Views:	251
Size:	31.2 KB
ID:	98694  
__________________
Virginia Lee is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-03-2015, 10:01   #12
Registered User
 
ka4wja's Avatar

Join Date: May 2007
Location: Florida
Boat: Catalina 470
Posts: 2,033
Re: Best WiFi booster

Will,
Either a "Bullet"-based system (what I've been using for years) or "Groove"-based system (newer and better!), will work well for you...

This set-up will cost you about $250, all-in, professionally packaged/tested, and ready for you to install it and "plug 'n play"....

I agree with steamgoat....IslandtimePC is the guy to buy from!!

Marine WiFi Systems

Although it is rare that I need to use an access point father away than a mile or so, I have used a few that were 3 miles away, with perfect reliability for days and days...(my system is just about 9' off the water...)

But, some of the best reasons to buy a system from Bob Stewart of IslandtimePC, is that he KNOWS what he is doing and will give you plenty of free support should you be technically-challenged or have a rare problem....but also 'cause he is a fellow sailor/cruiser!!!

(yes, you can save almost $100, if you piece things together yourself, by buying cheap on-line, etc....but you'll have no support and you may end up having troubles getting it to work well...)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Clipper4730 View Post
Hey yall just curious as to what your favorite wifi booster might be. About to take the plunge and purchase one for our Beneteau 50, just wanted to get a few opinions.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Clipper4730 View Post
I guess I shoujd have been more specific. We just want to be able to connect a router to a signal booster ie we want to reach signals further away.

Anyway looking at the Rogue Wave device or the Wirie ap+. Any one use the Wirie. Looks like it would be pretty easy to set up just need a power supply.
Don't bother with the Wirie or Roguewave...they're okay, but IslandtimePC's system is a bit better, and less expensive...

I've been using one for years, and am a happy customer!!



Just my 2 cents, based on my experience....I hope this helps...

Fair winds...

John
__________________
John, KA4WJA
s/v Annie Laurie, WDB6927
MMSI# 366933110
ka4wja is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-03-2015, 13:48   #13
Registered User

Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: Cruising the east coast and Bahamas
Boat: Pearson 422
Posts: 228
Re: Best WiFi booster

Ditto what john said. We went with the groove from islandtime and have been very satisfied throughout Abaco. We did purchase a cellular data pkg for backup but rarely use it.



Sent from my iPhone using Cruisers Sailing Forum
__________________
Greg Long
s/v Paperbird
www.paperbird.us
Paperbird is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 11-03-2015, 19:10   #14
Registered User

Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: Miami
Boat: Shannon 38
Posts: 37
Re: Best WiFi booster

To hijack the thread a little bit; PaperBird did you find a lot of free open wifi in the Bahamas recently?

We are going in the next month and have pretty much decided to rely on Batelco prepaid data plan for critical check-ins. Mistake?
__________________
Virginia Lee is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-03-2015, 05:52   #15
Registered User

Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: Cruising the east coast and Bahamas
Boat: Pearson 422
Posts: 228
Re: Best WiFi booster

I would guess we're about 60% wifi and 40% cell plan. We're using just under 2gb/month and last month had to update all our phone and ipad apps to not lose the data before it expired

If you need to connect, def have the cell hot spot. If you have flexibility, then wifi might be enough. I work part time and need to have dependable email. Your circumstances may vary

Note that we've stayed on Abaco this season where there are more wifi spots. If you go further south to Exuma or Berries I suspect many fewer wifi spots

Have a fantastic trip! Feel free to contact us directly if youd like. Contact info on our blog at paperbird dot us


Sent from my iPhone using Cruisers Sailing Forum
__________________

__________________
Greg Long
s/v Paperbird
www.paperbird.us
Paperbird is online now   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
wifi

Thread Tools
Display Modes Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Alfa WiFi Booster on a Mac Anomaly Marine Electronics 10 15-09-2014 16:19
[SOLD] WiFi booster antenna SailorHarry Classifieds Archive 0 09-04-2014 12:41
tablet wifi aerials (booster/amplifer/repeater) jacaranda Marine Electronics 0 04-12-2013 13:32
Cell phone booster on the boat..? CSY Man Marine Electronics 18 22-03-2008 21:12



Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -7. The time now is 06:37.


Google+
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Social Knowledge Networks
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.

ShowCase vBulletin Plugins by Drive Thru Online, Inc.