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Old 02-28-2021, 02:39 PM   #1
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Wifi - booster interference with nearby boats

Hi - I am technically minded but relatively illiterate when it comes to wifi matters.

Our club has asked members using the marina to not "re-broadcast" the wifi signal because that causes a mess of secondary wifi in the marina.

My understanding is that the wifi boosters that people are using actually capture the (weak) marina signal and re-emit it locally.

Is there an alternate that would, say, capture the weak marina signal and provide it in a cable that I could plug into my laptop?

Is there some other way to avoid this plethora of wifi signals from multiple neighbours each with their own routers?

Nick
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Old 02-28-2021, 03:31 PM   #2
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This could be interesting. a booster I always thought is a local thing to boost to your own router. If your router then broadcasts a wifi signal it would be a new channel. This re broadcast suggests it is the same origin signal.

I know at our marina, they actually have many repeaters/relays from the same source. The signal I pick up can be coming from any one of them.
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Old 02-28-2021, 06:20 PM   #3
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Channel interference is a big issue with Wi-Fi. One of the main advancements with the latest generation of Wi-FI, Wi-Fi 6 (you will see "AX" in the model number and specs of the router) is optimizing channels among many devices. The marina should look into installing modern APs, and subscribing to a managed Wi-fi service from their ISP. The latter would allow everyone to put their router into bridge mode and create a mesh type network, while segregating users for privacy and security purposes. A marina is like an apartment building or hotel, given the density of users and connected devices.
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Old 03-01-2021, 12:40 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Soo-Valley View Post
This could be interesting. a booster I always thought is a local thing to boost to your own router. If your router then broadcasts a wifi signal it would be a new channel. This re broadcast suggests it is the same origin signal.

I know at our marina, they actually have many repeaters/relays from the same source. The signal I pick up can be coming from any one of them.

I realise that the booster will emit local wifi on a different channel (otherwise it would interfere with the original signal).
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Old 03-01-2021, 12:44 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by caltexflanc View Post
Channel interference is a big issue with Wi-Fi. One of the main advancements with the latest generation of Wi-FI, Wi-Fi 6 (you will see "AX" in the model number and specs of the router) is optimizing channels among many devices. The marina should look into installing modern APs . . .
Good info for setting up the marina, but I don't think I am in a position to influence this. I just want to function as best as I can in less than ideal existing conditions.

So my original question was:
Can I feed the signal from a sensitive wifi receiver/antenna directly into my laptop via a . . . . cable!

Thanks to anyone who can give me an answer to this particular question.
Nick
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Old 03-01-2021, 01:58 PM   #6
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So my original question was:
Can I feed the signal from a sensitive wifi receiver/antenna directly into my laptop via a . . . . cable!

Yes. An example is Radio Lab's Wave Stealth external USB-powered adapter. There are probably several others...

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Old 03-01-2021, 02:13 PM   #7
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Chris - thanks for this. This was what I was looking for.
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Old 03-01-2021, 02:24 PM   #8
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The MicroTic Groove 52AC will pick up a wifi, is outdoor mountable, and puts the internet signal on an enthernet cable you can plug into your laptops network port (if it has one of course).

By being mounted up high, it can pick up Wifi signals FAR better than your built in antenna in your laptop, and cabled directly to your laptop, you'll get the best signal you are going to get. If the marina has 5Ghz wifi also, it can pick that up.

That being said, it's not the most user friendly device to setup, but once you do, it's reliable.

See this article for more info:

https://seabits.com/mikrotik-groove-...p-setup-guide/
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Old 03-01-2021, 07:24 PM   #9
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Is there an alternate that would, say, capture the weak marina signal and provide it in a cable that I could plug into my laptop?

Nick
This is how mine works (Island Time) but the other type which is a sort of repeater is very commonly sold. I think they are typically called boosters but not sure. They only work if you already have a signal that is receivable but weak. They are usually meant to go about halfway between the signal and the device that needs to use it.

I can definitely see an issue if multiple boats near each other have these.

Ken
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Old 03-02-2021, 06:59 AM   #10
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Thanks Ken,
So what device are you using?

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Old 03-02-2021, 07:29 AM   #11
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Chris - thanks for this. This was what I was looking for.
Nick

I've been using that, or it's predecessor, for about 12 years now, I think. In the cabin, with USB to laptop.

Generally works pretty well, and the longest distance over which I've been able to receive a signal (and "measure" that distance) was something like 1/4-mile... with the predecessor (Wave something else). "Measure" was by radar, since I knew where the AP was located.

More recently I've been using their o2Air unit, which is a combo antenna/router, to receive WiFi and then also create our own WiFi hotspot for subsidiary devices. That generally works even better, haven't noticed any self-induced interference issues, but the more noticeable benefit is that all of the subsidiary devices can retain our hotspot login info all the time. (If you pursue this, ignore their useless printed installation instructions... and go straight to the "wizard" to start your set-up.)

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Old 03-02-2021, 07:00 PM   #12
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Thanks Ken,
So what device are you using?

Nick
I’m using a wifi transceiver with a separate router from Island Time PC.

It’s this one

https://www.islandtimepc.com/marinewifi

It works great. The only problem is the wifi at most marinas has too many users on one drop so it gets bogged down.

Ken
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