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Easy way to improve range?

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#1
I've been supplying wireless internet to a friend in the same building as me. He usually gets 2-3 bars, 2 mostly, but has no problem with the internet. Recently they started renovating the building, and now metal objects and/or electric panels have increased interference to the point he can barely load a web page and is at like 1 bar mostly. My cheapest route would be to replace the dinky 3dbi antennas of my asus rt-n16 with 8 dbi ones. 9dbi vs 24dbi seems like it would give me the extra punch needed? Or will this take a more costly route?
 

brandonwh64

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#2
Yea those may help, Also putting an outside repeater would work if you want to spend the money.
 
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#3
That's what I'm afraid of, having to spend 80+ on shipping and taxes vs 36 for the antennas. So should I just get the repeater instead?
In other words, would I need both? Also, running tomato on the router, can increase output...
 
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#4
Repeaters, powerline, and such, would be the way to go for increased coverage; however, cost is a factor.
An antenna change is dependent on your routers location and the friends location.
An Omni directional antenna might give you a slight gain at the friend's location; but, I doubt it will solve the problem to your satisfaction.
Also, in your selection of antennae... make sure the antennae are tuned for your desired frequencies.
Location is a big factor in planning this... what to put where.

If you have an android phone/tablet or windows laptop/tablet (something portable in either case); get some signal/mapping software and test using some homebrew directional antennae.

Try something like:
NetSpot - they have a limited free version
HeatMapper
Or, test and find one that you prefer.

What is the best WiFi antenna for me?
Fix Your Wi-Fi: Free Tweaks and Major Overhauls

And, google homebrew homemade wifi antenna... you find a whole bunch. Look for directional ones(with directional antennae you can have a narrow or wide beam of you choosing).

Most firmware, in most routers, let you adjust the output to 100%.
Other versions of the firmware may allow you to get a little more; if so, you may want to apply additional cooling on the finals (output transistors).

Make sure you on the clearest channels you can use.
 
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#5
For windows based systems I recommend Amped Wifi Analytics for both android and PC.

I also recommend that brand's wifi stuff. Very awesome coverage. I have two of their routers and they both are really awesome.
Review here: http://remixedcat.blogspot.com/2013/09/amped-wireless-rta15-and-aca1-review.html

if worst comes to worst and you're too broke then get some justin beiber duct tape and pringles cans.
 
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#6
Actually, the Amped Wifi Analytics for android is just as good. It's one of the apps I used on my Galaxy tablet to diagnose his connection issues.
 
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#7
Cool! I like it as well.
 

Wikoontz

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#8
Do you think he might be able to find an old wireless router that someone has in their attic storage that you could use as a repeater? I know my husband hates throwing things away so we have like two upstairs in our attic that I wouldn't use as a primary router but could be passable as just repeaters.
 
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#9
He watches a lot of video on youtube ect, I would really like to extend n band.....
 
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#10
Well, nice perk to all this, found out my router could handle a 532mhz clock speed. The way I have it mounted, plenty of air, it's running cool. Internet is very fast!
Running EasyTomato 0.78..... haven't even upgraded to 0.80 yet!
 
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#11
Got bored while waiting for antennas to come... decided on some ocing action on my router....


 
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#13
It did increase my signal strength yes, but I notice more when using torrents ect, I have higher bandwidth. I want the new quad core gen routers now.....