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Thread: Mini-PCI WiFi antenna

  1. #1
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    Mini-PCI WiFi antenna

    I want to install an antenna on my carPC that can be placed either on the car (magnet/door) or somewhere inside the car. I know I need to use a u.FL connector off the card, but which pigtail do I get to mount a connector on the side of the carPC box?

    Basically, I want to run an extension connected to the side of the box to a remotely placed antenna. Can I use any omni directional antenna?

  2. #2
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    What you need to look for is a pigtail with a u.FL on one end and a bulkhead connector on the other. I would probably use either an N connector or RP-SMA on the bulkhead side. Then all you need is an antenna with the matching connector. These guys should have everything you need:
    http://www.hyperlinktech.com/

  3. #3
    Maximum Bitrate BarryWoods's Avatar
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    I would go rp-tnc (linksys/cisco accesspoints) or rp-sma (d-stink access points). N is just too big, and harder to find stuff locally.

    Here's the sizes you're going to be looking at. The N connector is the one in my hand, I'm holding it as close to the rp-tnc as I can without bending the cable too much. If you have a linksys wrt-54g then you know the size of an rp-tnc.
    Attached Images Attached Images  
    Failure is not an option....



    It's installed by default on every version of Windows.

  4. #4
    Variable Bitrate brucedog's Avatar
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    Depends on if you're talking about a high-speed wireless adapter card like this:
    http://www.netgear.com/Products/Adap...ome+Networking
    See how those cards have an antenna on them?

    I use a Netgear card and bought one of the "RP-SMA on the bulkhead side" connectors like rockhammer said. Got mine on boomj.com.

    I went to Home Depot, bought a round-topped 2" pvc pipe cap, drilled it as necc for the antenna cable, put a homemade bottom on it with a strong round magnet with plastic cover, so as to not scratch car. You get the idea, and it actually looks pretty tech; not krappy...

    It's neat to go into town, set it on the car roof, or top of hatchback, and search for available networks that permit useage. Sets inside car on flat surface or magnetic surface.
    Happy CarPC'ing!

  5. #5
    Variable Bitrate brucedog's Avatar
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    Here's my mod for antenna:

    [/IMG]

    [/IMG]
    Happy CarPC'ing!

  6. #6
    ptk
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    I went with rp-SMA bulkhead.


    there are 3 that you can see there.
    1. u.FL-RP-SMA for the mini-PCI WLAN (atheros chipset by Senao)
    2. u.FL-RP-SMA for USB-UMTS
    3. SMA-RP-SMA for USB GPS adaptor from sparkfun.

    I ran all three to the roof to this
    ***
    CarPC Ver 4 completed. Aopen i45GMT-HD, C2D mobile 2GHz. Photofast 64GB SSD. Novatel EU-850D

  7. #7
    Maximum Bitrate BarryWoods's Avatar
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    Nice!!
    Failure is not an option....



    It's installed by default on every version of Windows.

  8. #8
    Maximum Bitrate Kimota's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rockhammer View Post
    What you need to look for is a pigtail with a u.FL on one end and a bulkhead connector on the other. I would probably use either an N connector or RP-SMA on the bulkhead side. Then all you need is an antenna with the matching connector. These guys should have everything you need:
    http://www.hyperlinktech.com/
    Thanks for the link, ordered my pig-tail, extension cable and rubber-ducky. Got them all the next day as hyperlinktech was in the next town over from me .

    Thanks

  9. #9
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    Very Nice! (I joined just to comment on this)...

    Quote Originally Posted by brucedog View Post
    Here's my mod for antenna:

    [/IMG]

    [/IMG]
    @Brucedog:
    Awesome, awesome--I love the disc under that magnet! Would look super-clean on any car with white paint, too!

    I'm going to make one, this has got to be the simplest, cleanest-looking antenna-mod I've seen anywhere!

    Could you use it for other stuff, too? Like--ever think of putting a quick-connect end plug on it, and using it for your standard FM antenna? Or, maybe even something goonie like testing it with a scanner, etc.?

    It's perfect, just looks too cool to be single-purpose...I'm buying parts for mine today, BTW.

  10. #10
    Variable Bitrate brucedog's Avatar
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    Hi Mike,

    I feel kinda bad that I originally joined mp3car to learn about and build my own carPC/music system setup, then did not come back to mp3.. for a long time. I have learned, designed, modded, and am satisfied. Many guys keep adding/subtracting and changing things, but I am pretty happy...
    My little mag-mount antenna consists of the antenna that came with my NetGear card in my carPC, a reverse polarity ("RP") SMA cable, a 1 1/2" pvc pipe cap, the lid off some garlic stuff'd olives, a strong Radio Shack circular disc magnet, to which I glued a piece of soft but strong foam material.
    The only "rule" that I tend to follow is that I satisfy myself, build something that works and lasts. I love to recycle and find old stuff to re-use. To me, there's no virtue in spending hard-earned $$ unnecessarily!
    The SMA cable is about ten ft long, and although it generally lives in the car, stuck to a magnetic surface, I can stretch it out and put on roof or even on top of hatchback for greater elevation and connect to local hotels wi-fi, wherever I can get signal. Best of luck and skill on YOUR project!
    Happy CarPC'ing!

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