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Old 16-10-2010, 11:33   #16
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I've had a look and have several objections (by comparison) to the Surf:

It's got a brick. Unless that 12V were tolerant of house (10-15V) it would require an inverter to run.

It's relatively (albeit WAY higher than, say, a household router, at ~70mw) weaker than the currently (regulated to no more than that) common 1000mw.

It's interior rated. Either you'd have to come up with some means of enclosure, or be limited to having it inside.

It's got a 5bdi rubber duck antenna. Great for short range, as the band is very fat, and motion would be of no issue. However, it doesn't have the guts, in or out, to go very far.

It does use a cat5 cable, so you could have it connected to a router rather than just a single computer. Note that their other, on the right side of the three columns, uses POE, and a weatherproof box, but is a directional antenna, useful only in fixed locations. That's a common means of doing straight-line, line-of-sight, comms between two remote stations, but not useful for cruisers, typically.



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Old 16-10-2010, 12:12   #17
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I run the surf off of raw 12V battery bus with no problems (I think I researched this and was reassured that there is internal regulation, despite the specs)

True indeed on the low power and non-marinized packaging - I use it for the LAN side. It does play nice with external antennas, but there are indeed more robust solutions for the upstream connection. (My application is a little unusual: steel 44' boat as well as my partner's Cal 2-29 and a mobile lab in the marina... meaning I need a LAN that extends beyond the normal boat-centric bubble.)

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Old 16-10-2010, 12:39   #18
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I agree with Mark, mobile SIM cards are great. The dongle he showed comes in at around $50, but you can also pick up routers for about $150, which means hubby and I don't need to argue about who gets the dongle! Local internet lines over this side of the world cost anything from $25 dollars to $90 per month, depending on bandwidth.
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Old 16-10-2010, 14:32   #19
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when i am sailing i dont use internets. when i am at anchor i use my sprint mobile broadband. works great......
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Old 16-10-2010, 14:38   #20
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I love being online while sailing... a couple weeks ago, I was moving my boat north through Puget Sound in a steady 25-knot tailwind, and I had multiple Facebook threads going in response to the webcam (looking out the pilothouse window) and tracker. Kind of a hoot, actually... taking requests, commenting on the set of the sail, and being reminded by a distant friend that I really need to get the split rings on my turnbuckles. <wry grin>
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Old 17-10-2010, 11:58   #21
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In Mediterranian Europe, many towns have free wi-fi, and all you have to do is log on with your mobile number and you get an sms with a password. In most European countries it can sometimes be worth bying a local sim card for your mobile, as you can also get wi fi coverage with your account, this particularly true in France. There are some other old reliables. McDonalds outlets have free wi fi, even when the outlet is closed. Most hotels have wi fi and will allow you to use it free or for a nominal price and these days there is usually at least one bar/cafe in every village in Europe baiting for punters with the lure of free wi fi.
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Old 25-10-2010, 22:16   #22
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Posts: 20's still all greek, but it makes me realize what I thought would be the case.....there is no point in getting the techy equipment any time soon, as it's changing so fast that the options will be vastly different in 2-3 years time, when we're getting ready to SHOVE OFF!

Thanks so much for the info and yes...Flying Pig, I will be asking you to send me your info, so we can start to try to figure out these options. Thanks, in advance!

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Old 25-10-2010, 22:43   #23
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If coastal US your best choice for mobile broadband is a Verizon MiFi. Look it up. This creates a local hot-spot in your boat that supports up to 5 WiFi devices with Internet. I have no affiliation.

You can also tether most smart phones (that have broadband) to a laptop using a USB cable, to use the phone like a modem.
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