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Old 08-15-2013, 09:20 PM   #1
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power boosters?

Glad to be a new member...I'm retired, and I'm doing what I've always loved, camping.
My wife and I are having a custom camping trailer done by Taylor Coaches in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada.
Brad Taylor told me he will be installing a power booster for the tv. He suggested that I get a power booster for both the cell phone, and our laptop computer. If I did, he would install it for us.
Problem? Well I've been quoted as much as 900 dollars!!! Is there a power booster out there, that will boost the signal for both our cell phone and laptop? Oh, and one that isn't going to coast us close to a grand? I've seen some from Wilson, with an exterior antenna, and wired to the booster. But I don't know enough about this new technology. Some do cell phones or laptops, but not both.

Thank you fellow campers....Don
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Old 08-15-2013, 09:49 PM   #2
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Well doright, I'm no expert here on all the subjects, but a TV antenna booster is standard on any RV out there.

Cell phone and WIFI boosters/antennas are also common and are made by many companies. If you are halfway handy, I'm thinking you could buy all this and install yourself 75-80% less than that. Someone should be along soon with more specific info.
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Old 08-16-2013, 12:36 PM   #3
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I wouldn't worry too much about power boosting. Many times if the antenna signal is amplified too much, you end up saturating the signal and making it worse. "Boosting" is a marketing term because cell phone devices already take a weak signal and amplify the signal as much as they need. Cell phones do have a lower limit due to being a battery driven device, but i think even at that limit the signal is just too weak to amplify. The only reason to amplify with a "booster" is to gather the cleaner signal outside on the roof, and amplify it at the antenna to eliminate signal loss through the long stretch of cable. But many of these so called "boosters" don't do that.

You're best bet if you don't want to spend too much money is to simply install an external directional antenna on top of your travel trailer or tow vehicle. Ask verizon or att where the nearest tower is in the area and point the antenna directly at it. That unamplified signal will be much better than any gain amplified omnidirectional signal. Because when you amplify signal, not only do you amplify the signals you want, but you also amplify the signal you don't want as well. Directional antennas help to isolate the signal to only what you want.

My verizon 4150L wifi device has an external antenna port, which can connect to a rooftop antenna. This is perfect for trying to get internet and i think a more reliable way to go instead of a signal repeater. For your cell phone, i would use a wilson sleek($100) or something of that nature connected to an external antenna as well, this doesn't need to be 4g compatible, only the antenna for your internet device.

I would install just a pole on the rv roof. Then with every campsite you'll need to get up on the roof and install the antenna in the correct direction. It's just 2 ubolts that need to be tightened on the pole. This of course may be a limitation if your physical abilities don't allow you to climb up there all the time.
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Old 08-17-2013, 04:54 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gggplaya View Post
I wouldn't worry too much about power boosting. Many times if the antenna signal is amplified too much, you end up saturating the signal and making it worse. "Boosting" is a marketing term because cell phone devices already take a weak signal and amplify the signal as much as they need. Cell phones do have a lower limit due to being a battery driven device, but i think even at that limit the signal is just too weak to amplify. The only reason to amplify with a "booster" is to gather the cleaner signal outside on the roof, and amplify it at the antenna to eliminate signal loss through the long stretch of cable. But many of these so called "boosters" don't do that.

You're best bet if you don't want to spend too much money is to simply install an external directional antenna on top of your travel trailer or tow vehicle. Ask verizon or att where the nearest tower is in the area and point the antenna directly at it. That unamplified signal will be much better than any gain amplified omnidirectional signal. Because when you amplify signal, not only do you amplify the signals you want, but you also amplify the signal you don't want as well. Directional antennas help to isolate the signal to only what you want.

My verizon 4150L wifi device has an external antenna port, which can connect to a rooftop antenna. This is perfect for trying to get internet and i think a more reliable way to go instead of a signal repeater. For your cell phone, i would use a wilson sleek($100) or something of that nature connected to an external antenna as well, this doesn't need to be 4g compatible, only the antenna for your internet device.

I would install just a pole on the rv roof. Then with every campsite you'll need to get up on the roof and install the antenna in the correct direction. It's just 2 ubolts that need to be tightened on the pole. This of course may be a limitation if your physical abilities don't allow you to climb up there all the time.
I want to thank everyone for their help. You guys have been great..thank you again, I take every bit of advice, and I investigate the information I'm given.
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Old 08-17-2013, 05:27 PM   #5
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Jack Mayer and wife live full-time in their 5th wheel, and maintain a very good website for use by anyone wishing to benefit from his extensive research to follow his lifestyle. His website has a Communications section containing the results of his personal testing and evaluation of many communications related products. I think you will find it very useful.
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Old 08-17-2013, 07:01 PM   #6
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Wilson Cell Phone Signal Boosters

We have a cell booster and it does great.

Ken
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