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Soundman

join:2012-10-13
Enumclaw, WA

Picking up Clear's signal

Looking at Clear's coverage map I am just outside of their signal. I was wondering if I could get an outdoor antenna to pick up their signal. I know the Hub has an external antenna jack in the back but would an antenna be able to pick up a good signal in my situation? What antenna would I want to use?

Thanks


guest

@NET.PH
depends on what kind of antenna you use and also if you can find the location of the tower that would help so you can get a more focused antenna

Soundman

join:2012-10-13
Enumclaw, WA
reply to Soundman
I found the tower. It's about 4.3 miles from me. Looks like there's only trees between me and the tower. No buildings or hills. What antenna would work best?


xrayman

join:2008-12-09
Kansas City
kudos:1
reply to Soundman
I install grid antennas for all the Clear WiMax installations that are in fringe areas. Several users operate at over 5 miles from the tower.
Most of the time I use the 2.4 GHz 24 dBi Die Cast Mini-Reflector Grid Antenna from l-com. It has a very broad frequency range, the gain does drop off from the 24dbi to around 20 when used on the higher WiMax band.
»www.l-com.com/wireless-antenna-2 ··· onnector
In the past I have found on ebay some 24 dbi grid antennas that were used, in very good condition and they were cut for use with WiMax.
I recommend using Google Earth to map an elevation profile from your location to the Clear tower. That way you have a better idea of how high you need to elevate the antenna. Close in trees will be a problem.
Look around Jim's site for details about installing the antenna. »evdotips.blogspot.com/2008/10/pa ··· nna.html
Try to keep the antenna transmission cable as short as possible to reduce signal loss. Place the modem/router just inside the house at the antenna cable entrance point. I use LMR-400 cable.

Soundman

join:2012-10-13
Enumclaw, WA
Click for full size
There are not many close in trees. They're mostly spread out or in clumps. This profile is from my house to (approximately) the base of the tower. Think there's a chance of getting the signal?


xrayman

join:2008-12-09
Kansas City
kudos:1

New elevation profile
I think you have a chance with the proper mast elevation on your end.
The Clear tower should be 150 to 200 ft elevation, see new blue line on elevation profile.
The problem is at the 1 mile point from your location. You will need to get above that point and that includes any trees. I think 35 to 40 foot of mast should give you a chance.

Soundman

join:2012-10-13
Enumclaw, WA
Thanks so much for your help! One last question before I start buying equipment. I've done some searching and found two sites that have 2.6ghz antennas for a decent price (compared to the $130+ I've been seeing). Would I be better off getting one of these instead of the 2.4ghz?

»www.wimaxspot360.com/index.php/h ··· -antenna

»excel-wireless.com/2-6-ghz-grid- ··· a-24-dbi


xrayman

join:2008-12-09
Kansas City
kudos:1
Always better to get an antenna that is cut for the frequency band you are working with. But the most important factor is getting the best clear line of sight to the tower.
The wimaxspot antenna is an interesting design and most likely a realistic dbi rating for the reflector size.

Soundman

join:2012-10-13
Enumclaw, WA

1 edit
reply to xrayman
Ok, thanks!