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Old 21-07-2014, 15:00   #16
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Re: Crappy wifi solutions?

gg, pretty good input here (pun intended).

Free service - goner.

Good wifi in marinas - rare. Why? 'Cuz the few $$ it would take for them to make it good they (all) refuse to spend. In some cases, improvements would make it even cheaper. Go figgur...

www.activecaptain.com, which you should know by now like the back of your hand, has been doing some good writeups on electronic arts and entertainment. You should read their newsletter. Sign up, too, they'll send you regular emails with their new newsletters. Great material, written for the 21st century.

I bought an Alfa years ago, still works to pick up the rotten signal in my marina and I need it elsewhere, but, as the folks have explained to you, it doesn't work everywhere.

You NEED something else.

Do some more research in addition to asking here (like everything else you're now experiencing with your new boat).

Panbo: The Marine Electronics Hub is also a good resource.

Good luck, it IS out there.
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Old 21-07-2014, 15:44   #17
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Re: Crappy wifi solutions?

Have you tried a $15 USB WiFi dongle on an extension cord? I think 5 meters is the longest you can go with USB, but it gets your signal up from belowdecks. You might try this with a 2.4 ghz reflector for even more signal.
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Old 21-07-2014, 16:02   #18
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Re: Crappy wifi solutions?

The Ubiquiti is the only way to go for wifi. There are still unsecured wifi in the Bahamas for use at your own risk of course. But also useful in a marina environment where they provide free internet but you would rather not walk to the office to use it. Many popular harbors have fee based wifi that you can utilize on your boat from over a mile away.


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Old 21-07-2014, 16:09   #19
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Re: Crappy wifi solutions?

Some marinas around here have reasonably decent WiFi service from a commercial provider. Not expensive per year. And then I can use the service no matter which of the local marinas I might be in.

I was watching a Comcast On Demand thing the other day just as a matter of curiosity; worked well enough during mid-day, no buffering, etc. Doubt it would suffice if the marina were larger, more users, perhaps at night if many were trying to watch movies at the same time.

Some marinas will allow a local cable provider to run coax or fiber right to the slip. That might not be bad for a "home slip" if lots o' data and/or lots o' speed is a requirement.

What everybody else said, about connectivity and distance cruising.

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Old 21-07-2014, 16:40   #20
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Re: Crappy wifi solutions?

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Originally Posted by Dave852 View Post
The Ubiquiti is the only way to go for wifi. There are still unsecured wifi in the Bahamas for use at your own risk of course. But also useful in a marina environment where they provide free internet but you would rather not walk to the office to use it. Many popular harbors have fee based wifi that you can utilize on your boat from over a mile away.


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I've come very close to buying one, but the reviews say it's a bear to set up, need to be a computer geek to get it going, and I'm not. Heard the instructions that came with it weren't very useful and their support network isn't very supportive.

How bad was it? See in my marina Wifi sux, but I've heard it gets a lot better with a booster and I'm willing to spend some money but want something better than a USB dongle etc., primary for me in the boat is an Ipad, and of course there is no USB with that
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Old 21-07-2014, 16:57   #21
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Re: Crappy wifi solutions?

I went with a Groove antenna from Island Time PC and am very happy with it.
The customer service is excellent and the owner, Bob was very patient with me and helped me set it up over the phone. I installed it at the top of my mast and can see wifi signals up to a mile away. This works well here in the Bahamas.
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Old 21-07-2014, 17:03   #22
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Re: Crappy wifi solutions?

You definitely need some experience to set it up if you buy direct like I did. But you can purchase from several vendors who have designed a simple user interface for a bit more money. I lead it into my laptop which creates a hotspot for iPads, phones etc.. But you can hook a 12v router directly to it which is what I will do when I get a chance. I think one of the vendors has been mentioned in this thread, I cannot remember the names but there has been a lot of discussion on previous threads if you do a search.


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Old 21-07-2014, 17:44   #23
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Re: Crappy wifi solutions?

You'll be fine with the rogue wave set up. I did basically the same kit DIY, from Amazon (Amazon.com: Ubiquiti BULLET-M2-HP Outdoor 802.11 B/G/N M2HP: Computers & Accessories) and mounted it at the mast-head. I have it connected to a Cisco wireless router in the boat. We found most marinas had passable wifi, some better, some worse. Rare that we've had nothing. You probably don't need this with the Rogue wave kit, but I used these instructions when I did mine - very helpful: Ubiquiti Bullet2HP Installation and Onboard Wifi installation - BoatingHowTo.com
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Old 21-07-2014, 17:53   #24
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Re: Crappy wifi solutions?

We don't have a smart phone. We have been getting a signal all over Central America and MX. on a Pico Station. Some are free, some are from a bar/hotel etc. and easy to get and some you can pay for. Not often are they good enough for Skype but when they are, it's pretty cool.
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Old 21-07-2014, 18:04   #25
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Re: Crappy wifi solutions?

GG -If you have an iPhone with a decently sized data plan you can tether to the iPhone.

I do this all the time.

In fact I transit Narita Airport in Japan and in the United lounge I get like <200kbps from their WiFi. Unusable. I complained repeatedly to their Customer Service but like marinas they aren't upgrading.

I just tether my phone and pay the data fees to SingTel :-(

For a permanent solution - many of the ideas above are great. See if you can get a family shared data plan so everyone pools their bandwidth.
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Old 21-07-2014, 18:08   #26
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Re: Crappy wifi solutions?

If you are living in your slip in your marina why not get cable?


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Old 21-07-2014, 18:32   #27
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Re: Crappy wifi solutions?

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If you are living in your slip in your marina why not get cable?


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Can't get anything permanent because right now we are on the move. Not sure when or if we will settle in.

Most of the marinas that we have stopped at have had decent wifi, but the one that we are at now is no good.

It will be interesting to see if the rogue helps.
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Old 21-07-2014, 18:40   #28
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Re: Crappy wifi solutions?

It sounds like what you really need to do is limit yours kids usage. General internet usage doesn't use up much data. It's streaming movies, music and download or updating apps that takes up the most data. I'm a heavy user but don't do a lot of streaming and have no problem staying under 6GB a month. I just updated it to 10Gb as we are traveling and I was doing more streaming. But if you eliminate the high bandwidth items, you should be able to manage.

Use the wifi when available for streaming..etc but when on cell data, limit it.
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Old 21-07-2014, 18:47   #29
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Re: Crappy wifi solutions?

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Originally Posted by GalaxyGirl View Post
Can't get anything permanent because right now we are on the move. Not sure when or if we will settle in.

Most of the marinas that we have stopped at have had decent wifi, but the one that we are at now is no good.

It will be interesting to see if the rogue helps.

just say NO,buy your kids some books and get them interested in reading!

your children do not need endless hours of mindless YOUTUBE videos.....to become humans.........getting rid of all screen based entertainment will be the biggest favor you can do your children......

if you need internet for important emails get a dongle but keep it hidden and only use it once the kids have gone to bed.

otherwise play games,spend time with your children,let them read books,this is after all why you bought a boat?to give your children a better life?
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Old 21-07-2014, 18:55   #30
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Re: Crappy wifi solutions?

Certainly cell service is going to be the best general solution.
But if staying in a location for a while, might check into a WiMax connection,
I have Clear service, and it looks like they have spotty service, but if they have service where you are at, it is going to be cheaper than cell and faster than free wifi for sure.
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