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Old 15-10-2013, 12:25   #1291
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Possibly a stupid question but could you compensate for the lossy coax cable by using a higher power transceiver such as RouterBoard.com : Metal2SHPn ? I know coax is bad but what exactly is it you lose?
The main thing you lose is the received signal. To overcome that you need the business end of the transceiver at the antenna. That's why PoE is popular because it eliminates the receive signal loss. And it lowers the cost because coax costs more than Ethernet cable.
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Old 15-10-2013, 12:39   #1292
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Originally Posted by eddhewett View Post
Possibly a stupid question but could you compensate for the lossy coax cable by using a higher power transceiver such as RouterBoard.com : Metal2SHPn ? I know coax is bad but what exactly is it you lose?
With a loss of signal strength you lose bits within the packet data. When you lose bits the receiving end needs to correct the packets coming in at decryption. If it can't do that, it simply won't display the item that was being sent through the coax. Any correction of packet data leads to latency. The time between when the item was sent to when a computer can visually display that to you. Sometimes that latency is drastic. Sometimes you won't even notice. Not displaying information because the packets are corrupt is more noticeable, obviously.

As a previous poster noted, POE does not have this particular problem because the waveform strength from the transceiver to the receiver never degrades and therefore doesn't need (as much) correction.
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Old 19-03-2014, 08:31   #1293
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Re: Long-Distance WiFi Device

Here's the latest Practical Sailor extended cruise review of Bitstorm's Bad Boy high power Wi-Fi products: The New Bad Boy - Practical Sailor Article.
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Old 28-03-2014, 18:01   #1294
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Re: Long-Distance WiFi Device

Read most of the way through this thread. It killed my Thursday night.

It seems to me:
  • 3G/4G data is the best, when you can get it
  • Secondary would be a good WiFi setup
  • A pre-packaged Bullet setup seems to be to be the easiest way to do WiFi for a reasonable cost

Quote:
Originally Posted by mlahrkamp View Post
Here's the latest Practical Sailor extended cruise review of Bitstorm's Bad Boy high power Wi-Fi products: The New Bad Boy - Practical Sailor Article.
Does anybody have experience with this? Seems like it's reasonably priced, and an upgrade in terms of usability/UI.
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Old 28-03-2014, 18:13   #1295
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Re: Long-Distance WiFi Device

Pending your cruising range do check that the device you are considering covers that GSM frequency. Not all systems are built equally. There are other topics on this in CF.
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Old 28-03-2014, 18:36   #1296
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Re: Long-Distance WiFi Device

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Originally Posted by Emerald Sea View Post
Pending your cruising range do check that the device you are considering covers that GSM frequency. Not all systems are built equally. There are other topics on this in CF.
Indeed.

Off topic, but: I ended up choosing an iPad Air 4G, after looking at the world's GSM frequencies. It seemed to cover the most ground, and has some excellent nav apps. But I guess we'll see.
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Old 28-03-2014, 19:10   #1297
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Re: Long-Distance WiFi Device

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Originally Posted by TheNomadTrip View Post
Indeed.

Off topic, but: I ended up choosing an iPad Air 4G, after looking at the world's GSM frequencies. It seemed to cover the most ground, and has some excellent nav apps. But I guess we'll see.
Sounds good in theory but in practice having BOTH a 3/4G device and a long range WiFi soution probably works best.

In the US 3/4G worked great, but we used WiFi when we hit our data limits. In the Bahamas, BTC 3G internet was mostly awful. When it was awful there was often a good WiFi solution... as long as we had a long range antenna. In Jamaica we did not bother buying a data card because wifi was so good.
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Old 29-03-2014, 08:44   #1298
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Re: Long-Distance WiFi Device

Quote:
Originally Posted by TheNomadTrip View Post
It seems to me:
  • 3G/4G data is the best, when you can get it
  • Secondary would be a good WiFi setup
  • A pre-packaged Bullet setup seems to be to be the easiest way to do WiFi for a reasonable cost
3G/4G is not necessarily better (or worse) than Wi-Fi... they are just different methods for getting on the internet. Different locations will have different preferences. Cell data plans may come bundled with a phone plan and may make sense in a home region but data charges can cause you to raise your eyebrows when roaming. Wi-Fi may not be as readily available as cell in some areas (i.e. Great Lakes) and may be more available and lower cost in others (i.e. Bahamas).
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Old 29-03-2014, 10:51   #1299
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Re: Long-Distance WiFi Device

I am still looking for a solution for data and voice connection in Southern California and next year in Mexico. I have an Alfa WiFi antenna for the laptop but rarely find an unlocked signal.

We left Verizon and went with T-Mobile, bought new unlocked phones (one iPhone and one android) that should work in Mexico and can take TelCel SIM cards and we use them for personal hot spots.

Porblem is we get weak spotty or no signal in many ports and harbors even LA, Long Beach, Marina Del Rey. So I'm looking for a cell phone booster that is compatible with T-Mobile (1900-2100MHz). Has anyone found a solution?

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Old 29-03-2014, 10:54   #1300
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Re: Long-Distance WiFi Device

"check that the device you are considering covers that GSM frequency. "
it is not just a matter of frequencies. The US carriers have chosen, once again, to do things differently and in proprietary manners. "4G LTE" in the US uses a variety of "bands" that are exclusively used in the US, not in the EU. You mileage in the Carib and other places may vary but don't expect 4G LTE to work outside the US unless you've bought an "international" phone designed to support multiple bands, and a matching SIM to enable them.

Things should get worse in 2016/2017 when a number of the US GSM carriers have said they will start shutting down the 2G equipment (the most compatible) entirely.

Score for WiFi: That's an international standard, less to worry about. With new ".ac" equipment being phased in for more speed, although I wouldn't expect marinas and bars to be running out and buying it to replace their old stuff.
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Old 29-03-2014, 19:59   #1301
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Re: Long-Distance WiFi Device

Quote:
Originally Posted by hellosailor View Post
"check that the device you are considering covers that GSM frequency. "
it is not just a matter of frequencies. The US carriers have chosen, once again, to do things differently and in proprietary manners. "4G LTE" in the US uses a variety of "bands" that are exclusively used in the US, not in the EU. You mileage in the Carib and other places may vary but don't expect 4G LTE to work outside the US unless you've bought an "international" phone designed to support multiple bands, and a matching SIM to enable them.

Things should get worse in 2016/2017 when a number of the US GSM carriers have said they will start shutting down the 2G equipment (the most compatible) entirely.

Score for WiFi: That's an international standard, less to worry about. With new ".ac" equipment being phased in for more speed, although I wouldn't expect marinas and bars to be running out and buying it to replace their old stuff.

No difference from the issue with 2G or 3G ,

Almost all lte phones are multi national capable out of the box.

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Old 30-03-2014, 08:09   #1302
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Re: Long-Distance WiFi Device

Quote:
Originally Posted by TheNomadTrip View Post
Does anybody have experience with [Bitstorm BadBoy]? Seems like it's reasonably priced, and an upgrade in terms of usability/UI.
I've installed and configured three of these systems, and I've also done installation and configuration of stock ubiquiti wifi hardware (in a non-marine application). My opinion is that Bitstorm gives you the well-regarded ubiquiti hardware in a complete system, that's pre-configured and optimized for the cruising sailor. The system is easy to install and start, and it works. I think it's good value for most cruisers who aren't already network engineers.

Island Time also provides a packaged marine wifi solution, and many here have said it's a great system too.
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Old 30-03-2014, 10:27   #1303
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Re: Long-Distance WiFi Device

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lake-Effect View Post
I've installed and configured three of these systems, and I've also done installation and configuration of stock ubiquiti wifi hardware (in a non-marine application). My opinion is that Bitstorm gives you the well-regarded ubiquiti hardware in a complete system, that's pre-configured and optimized for the cruising sailor. The system is easy to install and start, and it works. I think it's good value for most cruisers who aren't already network engineers.

Island Time also provides a packaged marine wifi solution, and many here have said it's a great system too.
Thanks much!
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Old 30-03-2014, 11:20   #1304
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Re: Long-Distance WiFi Device

That practical sailor article reads like an ad. An objective article would have tested their unit against a stock ubiquiti unit. I would also ask the question of how do you get firmware updates? Does ubiquiti update their firmware and then you have to wait for your vendor to update their "custom" build? Do the custom stickers really make the unit any better? Do most people drill big holes in their masts/decks/boat to run the already terminated network cable?

$399 for a ubiquiti M2 titanium and another $150 for a router... yikes! I spent $150 on my gear and I've got a 2.4 GHz Ubiquiti, a 5 Ghz Ubiquiti, and a router that not only works with that, but if I put a USB Cell modem in it then I have 3 options for internet (2 more connectivity options than the reviewed setup) and have $400 leftover to spend paying somebody local to install it and show you how it works.
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Old 30-03-2014, 14:08   #1305
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Re: Long-Distance WiFi Device

Dave-
The "international" phones (i.e. Samsung G4) advertised as 4G LTE often simply do not support US LTE bands at all. Check eBay and Amazon, a number of vendors have posted questions and replies on that. Even Samsung's own web site shows there are different models--that look the same--for different markets.
And they're no the only ones.

Heck, even in the US, if you buy an AT&T 4G-LTE phone, it won't support 4G-LTE on T-Mobile. But if you buy "the same" phone directly from Apple or Google, it has support for both carriers. Different model numbers. The average consumer/buyer would never know. That's what all the parties (carriers and sellers and manufacturers) say and stand by here. Caveat emptor.

Not that most customers would know the difference between 2G and anything else these days. I've found that in the past two years "the internet" just seems to have bogged down, with little difference who the ISP or carrier or host is. Stuff that used to pop up "fast" seems to take forever, even when there's no equipment or connection in common. ISPs complain that Netflix can be using fully 50%of their backbone traffic at times, so maybe that's the problem. Too many users now, too many devices, too few DVDs in the mail. (VBG)
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