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Discussion in 'Boat Electronics' started by Richard Lane, Feb 25, 2007.

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  1. Richard Lane

    Richard Lane Guest

    I believe that POE "power over Ethernet" is required to power a high
    power WiFi modem via a cat5 cable at the mast head, perhaps a USB
    connected device would be better (AirLink).(). Just placing such a $170
    PepLink Surf or Buffalo cat5 modem on top of the cabin with a simple
    corner reflector would be good enough.
  2. RR

    RR Guest

    Does anyone got any experience as to which
    will be the best wi-fi booster antenna to a lap-top
    on board a boat?
  3. Larry

    Larry Guest

    I think Sprint and Linksys have solved the mobile wifi problem for mobile
    boaters. Take a look. Linksys has built a cellphone EVDO interface to
    plug the Sprint aircard into a wireless wifi router. You get high speed
    internet service from Sprint any place Sprint has cellular service across
    the country. It won't work in Europe, unless you plug in a European
    aircard from one of their carriers.

    I picture this aircard/wireless router combo running off a small 115VAC
    cable in a sealed-up NEMA enclosure just under the top of the mast on a
    cruising sailboat. PCS range from that high up would probably give you
    internet service 20 miles offshore via Sprint. Coverage is at:
    The coverage does not include Charleston, but a Sprint card DOES work in
    Charleston and many other places on their 1X slower system, so this
    coverage is just the 1Mbps EVDO coverage.

    Of course, this costs money.....(c;

    On the free, I'm using with great success the WRE54G "Range Expander"
    This box is $70 at J&R:
    a $30 savings from Circuit City's price.

    The WRE54G is a "repeater". It connects to what it either automatically
    finds (autoconfigure) or what you tell it to connect through over its
    ethernet cable (manual configuration). It stores these favorite links
    and reconnects to them automatically, like any wifi computer, when it
    hears them in range. Once configured, connection is fast and automatic.
    Being a repeater, not a router, it simply assumes the SSID of the system
    it is repeating. You simply notice your barely useable connection at 20%
    has jumped to 90% on your wifi notebook (or here on my Netgear SPH101
    Skype phone...(c;). I'm carrying one in my car and running it off a tiny
    inverter plugged into the cigarette lighter socket. When I get to lunch
    and want to play on wifi, I plug in the repeater and just sit it on top
    of the car outside the restaurant. It connects automatically to an open
    link at the gas station next door to Denny's and I have full wifi service
    inside Denny's until I leave.

    There IS a disadvantage to this....half speed, which isn't much of an
    issue going through a cable or dsl modem that's so slow, anyways. The
    repeater receives from A THEN transmits to you, then receives from you
    THEN transmits back to A, doubling the packet times as it cannot transmit
    and receive simultaneously on the same wifi channel.

    If you don't HAVE to have a wireless notebook on the boat, and you don't,
    a better solution might be to run Ethernet cable up to the masthead and
    install one of the quite powerful wifi access points in a weathershield
    at the masthead. You plug the laptop into the remote AP and turn off its
    local wifi radio inside it.

    They keep getting more powerful. Here's one that runs two TWO WATT wifi
    In comparison, your laptop's wifi radio runs about .02 to .05 watts. Of
    course, this power boost won't mean much if the marina is running a 20mw
    piece of crap on top of a file cabinet for "free internet" service
    because you won't be able to hear them very far. But, if the marina has
    a professionally-installed wide area wifi system, this AP could
    signicantly improve range way beyond the marina's borders.

    I'm afraid to ask for a price quote...(c; This is NOT home consumer
    equipment. It only costs a little more to go first class, however.
    Compare golf cart house batteries to those $500 Surette AGMs....same

  4. RR

    RR Guest

    Thanks - I stay on rivers and canals - thus the idea
    is to get better signal in marinas and around cities
    "war-boating" is the correct term.
    I bought a Hawking corner and will add an adapter.
    We'll check it out as soon as she goes back to water
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