View Full Version : Cell phone reception and external antenna

02-17-2008, 02:16 PM
We will begin full-timing in June. It is important that I have a good cell connection for six days a month. I have a Rogers/Cingular phone and am getting another Verizon phone. What is the best way to improve the reception? Is there a single external antenna that will work with both phone choices? Any recommendations or experiences? Thanks.

Jon Wehrenberg
02-17-2008, 02:36 PM
I am not yet in the digital age, but I have a normal hand held cell phone and it works fine in the bus.

We also have a hard wired digital cell phone converter that makes all our telephone jacks throughout the coach work with regular telphones. It allows us to locate regular phones throughout the coach, one of them a wireless, and it works as well as the little hand held cell phone. That hard wired device needs 120V AC power all the time, and it has a roof mounted antenna. Its service is through Verizon.

02-17-2008, 02:44 PM
What is the hard wired converter called? Is there a model number or name. I will be at the Verizon store in LA on the 24th to get a phone and AirCard.

Jon Wehrenberg
02-17-2008, 07:27 PM
I will have to get the information next time I get in the bus.

02-17-2008, 09:09 PM
I have been having difficulty with getting good reception with my verizon air card lately so while at the mini rally PSL, Florida, I asked Wild Bill Miller, an electonics guru what to do. He has been all over the country full timing and and knows the problem with cell service. He had purchased a cell phone booster/repeater from this company and seemed pleased with the results,
Exterior antenna with an inside amplifier.


Bill. please chime in on this and update us with further developments if any.

I also have upgraded my verizon card to the new and improved version with the mini antenna. Dont know if it is any better yet or not as I have not had an opportunity to use it.

02-17-2008, 09:23 PM
Thanks Jon.

Roger is the new Verizon card the Verizon PC5750 or the Verizon Wireless V740 Expresscard or the Verizon KPC680 Expresscard. I understand that the Verizon KPC680 Expresscard works with both the Kyocera KR1 Mobile router and the new Cradlepoint MBR1000 EVDO / HSDPA Mobile Broadband Router which is suppose to scream.

I also found the following site for external antenna's and amplifiers:

Antenna Guy
800 470-4602

Anyone have any experience with these? Thanks

Darrell McCarley
02-17-2008, 09:44 PM
Lloyd, Try the Flying J web site, They have a booster for truckers that may work for you.

02-18-2008, 08:36 AM
Lloyd, Try the Flying J web site, They have a booster for truckers that may work for you.

We had Marathon Install a cellphone booster system that we sent out to the factory. Here is a list that we installed and purchased for our Cell/Email needs.

1. Cell Booster, see JPEG image below
2. Top Global MB6800 www.topglobalusa.com This device acts as a router/aircport. It also houses our 3rd item, the Verizon USB727 Modem.

The result is that we are able to have both of our laptops access the the internet at the same time, get higher speeds and better signals.

Marathon said that it is important to separate the booster antenna from the Wifi antenna so avoid interference.

I have had good luck with both the top Global and the Verizon USB Modem. I have even tested it against my own high speed service inhouse with excellent results. The booster is supposed to be able to bring signals in from up to 70 miles away, we will see.


02-18-2008, 08:58 AM
Thanks Bruce I am talking with 3G Store online and will check out Global. The new technology sounds quite fast.

I plan on using the Plantronics PulsarŪ 590A Bluetooth head set to give me hands free access to the keyboard while on the phone. It works with my Rogers/Cingular Treo 650 and I will have to purchase a compatible Verizon phone.

The router and booster will give me a little walking freedom. Thanks

02-18-2008, 06:43 PM
Lloyd, The new car is a Verizon PC5750. 50.00 Bucks with a 50 Buck Rebate. go figure.

02-18-2008, 06:55 PM
mac Book Pro has an ExpressCard slot rather than a PCMCIA so I ordered the Verizon Novatel Express Card Z740 and the Cradlepoint MBR1000 EVDO / HSDPA Mobile Broadband Router. I will add an external antenna later.

Jon Wehrenberg
02-18-2008, 07:08 PM
Have you guys considered speaking in English. I have tried to read the most recent posts on this topic and now I am convinced you are a bunch of nerds with pocket savers who used to build rockets when you were kids.

I'm just amazed Lew isn't all over this one.

02-18-2008, 07:12 PM
The PC guys had the pocket savers, the Mac guys have no pockets.

Jon Wehrenberg
02-18-2008, 07:14 PM
At least on that response you used English that even I could understand.

I need to get my SDR updated. Maybe that is the problem.

02-18-2008, 07:17 PM
You got me. What is an SDR?

02-18-2008, 07:22 PM
I use a Verizon card in the express slot with a Wilson wireless booster. I hard wired the booster to my phone and card but am going to change it to an internal antenna which I will mount on wall next to my seat. It is about 3" x 7" and a 1/2" thick. Your cell phone transmits to the local antenna, to the booster up to the roof antenna and you get about 30db of gain to your service.

Works in reverse for reception just as well. The wireless will improve all service, Att, Verizon, air cards, etc. and will cover everyone with in 50' of the antenna.

I did a test on a unit with a Monaco guy. I put my phone in test mode and he turned on the amp and down came the meter by 25db. As I move away from the antenna the affect quickly dropped. Nothing can beat hard wired, but the freedom to move and talk is worth the lower performance.

02-18-2008, 07:27 PM
an internal antenna which I will mount on wall next to my seat. It is about 3" x 7" and a 1/2" thick. Your cell phone transmits to the local antenna, to the booster up to the roof antenna and you get about 30db of gain to your service.

Mike who makes the internal antenna. That sounds nice.

02-18-2008, 09:45 PM
You want the Model, Mobile Wireless Dual-Band Amplifier (801201) for most applications. Go to the link below and it has lots of information. We have had excellent luck with the Wilson amps.


Remember you need an interior antenna, amp, and exterior antenna.

02-18-2008, 10:01 PM
Which interior antenna are you thinking of using?

02-18-2008, 10:24 PM
Jon and I are using our SDR antennas. They work great, huh, Jon?

Jon Wehrenberg
02-19-2008, 06:54 AM
I have the old model SDR, and it has the integral antenna. It only works if I have a clear view of the southern sky.

Just Plain Jeff
02-19-2008, 07:18 AM
The deal on the SDR's is that the original model was supplied with the complete hardware for new software on an iterative basis. This, however, requires strict adherence to a preventative maintenance schedule and proper cleaning and lubrication. There may indeed be POG members who are left over hippies and are so zoned out that they have failed to adequately maintain their units. Mine works fine, but then it has the emerald controller. Just two clicks and you're where you want to be.

02-20-2008, 02:04 AM
Would any of these devices help the signal for WiFi? I was in several RV parks that had free WiFi and I could connect but could not stay connected. I was told that maybe my computer doesn't have a srong enough return signal to work well.

02-20-2008, 07:35 AM
Greg a few links: