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Old 05-09-2020, 20:22   #1
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WiFi Boosters - what to buy

So we just bought and moved aboard an old leopard 47. Shes seen a few years hard work and we are looking forward to putting in the hours while we sail to make her home.

Top of the priority list is connectivity.

Im looking at either the digital hatch wl510 or the WiFi bat (or built my own using a ubiquity bullet)

Has anyone had any experience with either of these?
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Old 05-09-2020, 20:37   #2
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Re: WiFi Boosters - what to buy

I have used the rouge wave on a few boats.

Do you expect to find much open wifi?
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Old 05-09-2020, 20:39   #3
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Re: WiFi Boosters - what to buy

I'm using the Bullet M2, hooked to an L-com HG2415U-PRO antenna, and have had very good success. I can usually stream video when neighbors can barely browse.

Sounds like you're fairly technical, so using Ubiquiti equipment shouldn't be an issue. I would, however, not recommend it for anyone not very comfortable around management of networking equipment.
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Old 05-09-2020, 20:54   #4
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Re: WiFi Boosters - what to buy

Do you find the 100mb speed a limitation? Also, what antenna options have you looked at. We are on a cat so I’m wondering if we can get away with a higher dB antenna as we don’t roll as much as a mono.
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Old 06-09-2020, 08:16   #5
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Re: WiFi Boosters - what to buy

Quote:
Originally Posted by DaRed View Post
Do you find the 100mb speed a limitation?
I'm assuming that's directed at me, with respect to the Bullet M2. At first, I thought perhaps you were joking, about 100 Mbps being a limitation, and then I realized you were actually serious.

What kind of internet connection speed are you used to, if you think 100 Mbps could be a limitation? I tend to be thrilled if I'm approaching 10.
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Old 06-09-2020, 09:57   #6
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Re: WiFi Boosters - what to buy

Has anyone used a BadBoy? I have one and have set it up temporarily with mixed success. I am not technical. Would like to install it permanently if there's a good chance of success.
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Old 06-09-2020, 10:01   #7
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Re: WiFi Boosters - what to buy

We've had the Island Time version for 6 years with good results. Excellent support!

Plug and play for those of us who don't want to learn the techy stuff.
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Old 06-09-2020, 12:04   #8
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Re: WiFi Boosters - what to buy

We just upgraded from the Badboy Extreme which I would no longer recommend. First tried a Ubiquiti Bullet and turned out to be a bad unit after 5 hours of troubleshooting.

Ended up getting the Microtek Metal 52 ac. Very happy with it. Superior build quality to others, comes with POE adapter and 6DB antenna, all for less than $120 on Amazon. Web browser for extensive setup options or app for quick setup. Runs on both 2.4g and 5g bands and included antenna is tuned to both. Highly recommend. https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07D8RW4LK..._8itvFb3DRWDHP
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Old 06-09-2020, 14:48   #9
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Re: WiFi Boosters - what to buy

If you are technical at all I also recommend the ubiquiti bullet. I use it at the marina or when close to shore with great success. I have it connected to a ubiquiti airgateway (which is now eol) for local boat wifi. I believe that you could use the airmax air cube which is available for local wifi ap if you wanted to stay all ubiquiti.
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Old 06-09-2020, 15:22   #10
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Re: WiFi Boosters - what to buy

Are you confident that where you are sailing will have good WiFi access points? Many marinas throttle to 1Mbps. Open (Free) WiFi is long gone.

I used to use my Bullett a lot but I think only twice in the last year. Mobile is almost always faster - and often cheaper.
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Old 06-09-2020, 16:29   #11
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Re: WiFi Boosters - what to buy

Where do you think you will find free, unlocked or marina WiFi with speeds anywhere near 100mb? If internet access is critical you would be better off spending your time and money on a cellular access point or hotspot of some sort. This isn’t the 1990’s.......
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Old 07-09-2020, 04:48   #12
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Re: WiFi Boosters - what to buy

Quote:
Originally Posted by bcboomer View Post
We've had the Island Time version for 6 years with good results. Excellent support!

Plug and play for those of us who don't want to learn the techy stuff.
Amen.

Our boat, back in the days when it was the only game in town, was one of the examples Bob Stewart used on his site.

In 2010 i had strings of boats following us around as I left our router open, and could get email when everyone else couldn't even find a signal. Operating under way 7 miles from a common household router was typical.

But that said, i concur that for most places in the world, unless you're just trying to better the signal at your marina, cellular links are the way to go.

Depending on your use and need, you could just use your phone's hotspot facility. Alternatively, depending on where you are, you may be able to use My Island WiFi, or Finally WiFi (same guy, different gear) for truly unlimited data (many over 10TB, hordes over 1TB, per month). I'm beta-testing a router which uses 12V power via a commonly available barrel plug, the same as on my Linksys router and all my external HDD before the day of USB powering, and my monitor.

But 'in the day' we commonly got dozens of hits, and used whatever open signal was available, choosing the one with the strongest signal...
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Old 07-09-2020, 10:22   #13
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Re: WiFi Boosters - what to buy

Not familiar with those options so perhaps don't understand what you are trying to accomplish - but I use the Island Time wifi booster at marinas and it works well.
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Old 13-09-2020, 11:08   #14
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Re: WiFi Boosters - what to buy

I set up my own system with a Bullet for WiFi and a 4G LTE modem for cellular. The Bullet and 4G Mimo antenna are mounted on the stern rail, and connected to a standard router inside. All devices on the boat log into the router. There is a simple switch to switch between WiFi and 4G. The marina I stay at has good WiFi so I use the Bullet to attach to that. When out cruising in southern FL, I simply switch to the 4G modem and usually have good cellular connection. The exception is around the Southern tip of FL and everglades. No connection there!

There is a write-up on my website and there is a downloadable pdf document with detailed installation and configuration instructions.
How do you get internet on a boat? | Terrapinsailing.com

Good luck!
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Old 13-09-2020, 20:41   #15
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Re: WiFi Boosters - what to buy

The Ubiquiti Unfi AP Outdoor model is far superior than the bullet models because they support 2x2 MIMO and the antennas still connect directly to the router so you don't have to deal with db loss because of a wire run. You can have both a 2.4 and a 5 model.

The microtik groove 52 is also a great outdoor router even though it doesn't support mimo because it does both 2.4 and 5.

We use a ubiquiti outside going to a peplink transit cat 18 wan port inside. We also use a poynting antenna for the LTE.
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