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TG582n wifi with external antennae

typonaut
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Registered: 30-08-2017

TG582n wifi with external antennae

I have seen posts of the TG582n showing antennae sockets on the PCB. If one attaches 2.4GHz antennae to these sockets is an improvement in wifi reception possible/likely?

At the moment I only seem to get decent reception fairly close to the router - if I'm upstairs, about 10-12m from the router I get very poor reception.

Better just to buy another router?

10 REPLIES
harrym1byt
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Re: TG582n wifi with external antennae

I don't know the TG582n, but if those really are antenna sockets then yes plugging antennas in them can improve their range, with certain reservations. However your present 10 to 12 metres does seem poor coverage and I wonder if there might be a reason for that - such as the structure of the building limiting the range?

I live in a normal semi, wood floors, plaster ceilings - my main router is installed on the second floor, in the loft. From there it manages to cover most of our quite large garden, the 2nd floor, 1st floor and the ground floor, despite there being a few other access points around me. It wasn't optimal on the ground floor, so I added a second access point on the ground floor, hard wired to the main one.

Getting back to your antennas...

Antennas improve range by making the signal narrower and more directional. A few years ago as a favour to a grandson who lives over half a mile away (the other side of the village), I gave him access to use my broadband. To do this, at each address I used a pair of normal wifi routers, with some home made Yagi antennas plugged into the back of each. It worked rather well, despite there being lots of other access points between the two addresses. The Yagi antennas are very directional, similar to a normal TV antenna, but these were quite tiny. 

The small magnetic mount antennas you can buy on Ebay, are much less directional than that, but might be able to help with poor local wifi coverage.

 

 

Baldrick1
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Re: TG582n wifi with external antennae


typonaut wrote:
Better just to buy another router?

In a word, YES

If you are on a budget and want far better WiFi coverage then go onto Ebay and get a BT Smart Hub 6A see https://community.plus.net/t5/My-Router/Smart-Hub-6-Variants-and-Performance/m-p/1504366#M5170 for more information on the version to go for. Full instructions on how to configure one for use with Plusnet will be found in this forum.



 

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Re: TG582n wifi with external antennae

Yes I can confirm this.

We were using a Thomson TG585v7, and the reception was OK upstairs, but sometimes poor.

Changed to fibre, which needed a new VDSL router anyway. The PlusNet Hub One (a BT Homehub 5A?) is much better.

Rather than messing with your current router, I would chance it with a newer model.

typonaut
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Re: TG582n wifi with external antennae

As I understand antennae (and I could be wrong), they have three functions: send a stronger signal, receive a stronger signal and direct a signal. In the first and second instance the evidence is relatively clear – I look out the window and I can see two huge masts as Crystal Palace, and the purpose of big radio telescope dishes is to collect weak, dispersed signals into a single spot. Given that we also see directional microwave aerials and satellite dishes (both receivers and transmitters) we'll take it for granted that this also works.

But, looking at the price availability of these BT hubs it seems an uneconomical experiment to be messing around with antennae on an old device.

I'm probably getting poor signals upstairs because I live in a flat, and the block is made of concrete (presumably with reinforcement bar), so from where I am sitting to the router there is a concrete wall and a concrete floor - through which the signal would have to go at an oblique angle, so there is probably 400-500mm of concrete to penetrate.

Is the home hub 6a ok for fibre? Is the Plusnet One hub the same as the BT 6a hub?

Alternatively, does anyone have recommendations for wifi routers just for LAN connections (ie without PPP to connect to the internet)?

Thanks

Baldrick1
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Re: TG582n wifi with external antennae

The BT SmartHub 6a works on both standard broadband and fibre. It is two generations later in design to the Plusnet Hub One, which is a BT Home Hub 5a in a white case and tweeked hardware this gives better performance to the old Hub One design.

From your description you may still have problems but you will not know unless you try it. If you stIll have problems you will need to either run a cable between floors and fit a wireless access point or use a powerline pair that includes a WiFi remote unit.

typonaut
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Re: TG582n wifi with external antennae

Thanks. Ethernet isn't a problem, that's mainly what we have - I only really use wifi for devices like phones, tablets, laptops etc for people that want net access (no access to wired network).

I'm kind of puzzled by these 'wifi extender' devices - are they just creating another wifi network, or somehow relaying the logins?

Probably a smart hub 6 is worth a punt - at worst I can plug it into the TG582 and use it for just for wifi.

Baldrick1
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Re: TG582n wifi with external antennae

The purpose of suggesting running an Ethernet cable was so that you could put a Wireless Access Point downstairs plugged into this cable as well as having the router upstairs. Not simply to get Ethernet downstairs. This would definitely solve your problem.

If you go for a Smart Hub 6 then first read here: https://community.plus.net/t5/My-Router/Smart-Hub-6-Variants-and-Performance/m-p/1504366#M5170

This is far better than the TG582 and it should be used instead of the TG582. This could solve your problem but it is not guaranteed.

WiFi extenders come in two forms. The first is a simple relay that you put halfway between the router and your living room. These simply receive the weak signal at the half way point and retransmit it at full strength..

The other version is to use powerline devices. Instead of using an Ethernet cable these send the data over the mains witing. You plug one unit in next to the router and connect to it via an Ethernet Cable. In your living room, providing you buy the wireless variant, you simply plug the second unit into the mains and it becomes a second wireless transmitter in the same way as thw Wireless Access Point mentioned above. However before going down that route read here: https://community.plus.net/t5/My-Router/Powerline-Networking-Issues/m-p/1506357#M5314

A confusing list of alternatives I agree, It is difficult to advise which option you should go for. The Ethernet cable  and WAP would defifinitely work but involves stringing cable around your property. You either have to buy this cable with the plugs on unless you have the DIY skills to do the job. The others cannot be guaranteed and I am not prepared to suggest a course of action that costs money and might give problems.

typonaut
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Re: TG582n wifi with external antennae

I can't really put the router upstairs, well, not without a long ethernet cable, and that would be a bit pointless, because I'd then have to run another cable downstairs for the WAP I'd need down there too. There is a chance a position upstairs might alleviate the problem - but by the time I've messed around with that I'd probably find that it is easier just to install a WAP upstairs.

Although that's yet another device to power 24/7.

Thanks for all the feedback.

harrym1byt
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Re: TG582n wifi with external antennae

A router doesn't really consume that much power. I'm a bit [-Censored-] about minimising the power bill, swapping lights for LED's, turning lights off when not in use etc., but I have two access points on 24/7. They cost me less than 10p per week to run, just a tiny proportion of the total energy bill.

As I understand it, one LAN cable would be all you need, from the modem / access point, to the second access point.

Moderator's note by Mike (Mav): Full quote of preceding post removed as per Forum rules.

 

Baldrick1
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Re: TG582n wifi with external antennae

There seems to be some upstairs/downstairs confusion here. What you should do for the fastest and most reliable connection is install the router next to the master socket. You then run an Ethernet cable to the other floor where you fit a WAP. Only one Ethernet cable is required.