Looking to improve signal

Questions and Support related to Antennas
Adm1jtg
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Re: Looking to improve signal

Post by Adm1jtg » Fri Oct 16, 2020 8:48 pm

You need to test on the same server. Speedtest.net allows you to change servers. I have seen on speedtest for example running my tests on the verizon server i get under 1 down most times but running the same test same setup on nationalnet will go anywhere from 20-30 down with an occasional 50 down Always test on the same server.

But to answer your original question... why does the hotspot have better speeds then the router?

I dont think you said what model hotspot your using, but a somewhat new verizon mifi has 4 internal antennas at least 3x carrier aggregation and likely a higher CAT rating then your modem. As stated in other threads without external antennas on the router a hotspot/mifi device or even a relatively new phone will almost always win.

With external antennas it is very possible to make 2 external antennas in mimo config better then the 4 small internal antennas of the mifi or phone.. External antennas also allow you to pinpoint a specific server where as the mifi and phones just grab signal from everywhere. Lastly most mifi and phones cannot band lock. Quite often they pick the strongest signal but that doesnt mean the best signal, so you have more control with a dedicated router.

You may want to look through this tread as well, its a good read

https://ltehacks.com/viewtopic.php?f=8&t=1940

gaddman
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Re: Looking to improve signal

Post by gaddman » Sat Oct 17, 2020 9:49 am

The hotspot is a Novatel 7730L. Looks like it's CAT 9, 3x carrier aggregation. The EM12 in my router is CAT 12, 3x carrier aggregation. Should be pretty comparable, right?

Right now I've got the router outside on a deck, about 12 ft higher than the hotspot which is still inside. Router runs slower than the hotspot...but much better than in the evenings. Here's a comparison.

HotspotInsideBand4.png
HotspotInsideBand4.png (53.96 KiB) Viewed 116 times

RouterOutsideBand4.png
RouterOutsideBand4.png (73.96 KiB) Viewed 116 times
I wonder if it has to do with the Plan. The hotspot is supposed to be fast data until the cap, then throttled. The router is an unlimited tablet plan, and it is using plan data, not hotspot data. I wonder if it's getting deprioritized where as the hotspot is not? FYI, I'm using TTL 64. I've been reluctant to mess with that since I know it's using plan data at that setting.

Adm1jtg
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Re: Looking to improve signal

Post by Adm1jtg » Sat Oct 17, 2020 6:18 pm

Possible but if I recall the mifi 7730 has a 4x4 setup, meaning it has 4 antennas, most router setups only have 2 antennas. That could also be the reason, depending on what antennas your using ion the router, I didnt read back to check

gaddman
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Re: Looking to improve signal

Post by gaddman » Sun Oct 18, 2020 11:19 am

Using the stock antennas on the router for now. The external one should be here tomorrow. I drove around and laid eyes on a couple more towers. So I will have a few options to point the new antenna to.

gaddman
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Re: Looking to improve signal

Post by gaddman » Wed Oct 28, 2020 10:55 am

Just a follow-up. Panel antenna has helped a lot! Still see some congestion in the evenings, but mostly usable. Great speeds compared to what I'm used to most of the time. -7 RSRQ is the best I can get in the current antenna location. I can go another 10ft or so higher, but I'm going to run it where it is for now. I haven't tried other towers yet.

The only thing I've noticed is that I had a few instances where the modem seems to disconnect. I could still see a signal, but it was not connected to the ttyusb or wwan0 thingy-ma-bob , so no internet even though I could connect to the router via wifi. That never happens unless I have the antenna connected. I don't know if that was a signal interference thing or not. I have tried all bands, bands 4 & 66. It always prefers 66 no matter what. I now have it on B4 only, and that has been stable so far.

Anyway, just wanted to say thanks to everyone that has helped. I still have a lot to learn and will continue to tinker until I'm satisfied with reasonable speed and stability. Cancelled Viasat service yesterday!

With_PanelAntenna.png
With_PanelAntenna.png (56.06 KiB) Viewed 25 times

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