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Thread: Mini PCI-e wireless card w/ external antenna support

  1. #1
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    Mini PCI-e wireless card w/ external antenna support

    My motherboard has a mini PCI-e slot and I figured why not use it for a wireless card. However, it also needs to support an external antenna.

    Does one exist???

    I've searched the net and forums for a couple of days and haven't found one - or at least one that actually says it supports one. I've tried looking at a few pics but I can't make out if any of them have a connector for it.

  2. #2
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    All mini-pci wireless cards will have one (or two) connectors for an external antenna. They are really, really tiny connectors that are circular with a dot (wire) in the middle.

    The connector type on the card will be a U.FL connector, also [less commonly] known as I-PEX. Most wifi antenna's will have a RP-SMA or TNC connector. Therefor, you will need three things:

    - Mini-pci wireless card
    - u.fl to RP-SMA adapter pigtail (or u.fl to TNC adapter pigtail)
    - Wifi Antenna with either RP-SMA or TNC connector

    Unfortunatly, the adapter pigtails are more then what you would expect to pay for them. They run about $10-13, plus shipping. There's lots of places online to find them, just search for "u.fl pigtail adapter"

    There are lots of mini-pci wireless cards, so shop around to find one with the networking type (a, b, n, or combo of these) and output transmit/receiver power that you want. Higher output power means you'll have a better chance of a stable connector over a farther distance.

    If you really need some examples, let me know.. but there's are LOTS out there -- especially if you look around at laptop supply places.

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    Not to split hairs and I'm assuming the answer is yes, but does this also apply to mini PCI-e wireless cards?

    Also I would be using this with the combo GPS/Wifi antenna sold in the mp3store that has the FME connector so I would definitely need at least 1 adapter for it.

  4. #4
    Variable Bitrate Area3's Avatar
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    Don't know if this is what You are wanting But This Card is a good one...

    http://store1.sonnettech.com/product...roducts_id=222
    Microsoft Is a Evil Empire that has corrupted a generation!

    Thanks - Eric Scott
    Area 3 Productions
    www.myspace.com/area3

  5. #5
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    Yeah that's a great example of one - I can see the external antenna connectors on it. Thanks! However that roof antenna only has 1 connector so getting an n-card won't work too well as I don't plan on running more antennas for the other connectors heh. I just need to find a good b/g one.

    But yeah I can clearly see those connectors now so as long as the picture is clear enough that shows that, I should be able to pick one out now. That's sorta been the issue as well, some of the products I've seen out there, the closeup pic is fuzzy so you can't tell if it supports external antennas.

  6. #6
    Variable Bitrate Area3's Avatar
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    Just Read a Little and You might Find Your Answer
    Backward compatible with 802.11a, 802.11b, and 802.11g devices


    Microsoft Is a Evil Empire that has corrupted a generation!

    Thanks - Eric Scott
    Area 3 Productions
    www.myspace.com/area3

  7. #7
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    Yeah I know that, but its a bit pricey for what I need - I would rather just save money and buy a g card.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by jbradshw View Post
    Not to split hairs and I'm assuming the answer is yes, but does this also apply to mini PCI-e wireless cards?

    Also I would be using this with the combo GPS/Wifi antenna sold in the mp3store that has the FME connector so I would definitely need at least 1 adapter for it.
    Yes, the same would apply for mini PCIe wireless cards.. Make sure you get the right one, though, as I've seen very very few mini PCIe slots except for custom solutions.

    If you use the mp3car store antenna, you'll not only need an adapter pigtail, but an extension cable as well. Generally, pigtails are only about 6 to 12 inches. And with the u.fl connections especially, you will want a short pigtail with its opposite end firmly mounted. The u.fl connectors have a strong hold, but to much tension/stress and the pigrail will rip right off. Just something to keep in mind =)

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by NotYou View Post
    Yes, the same would apply for mini PCIe wireless cards.. Make sure you get the right one, though, as I've seen very very few mini PCIe slots except for custom solutions.
    Yeah I'm using the MSI Fuzzy RS690T motherboard which has one - this is my main reason for the original post. The connector is so tiny I didn't even really notice it at first!

  10. #10
    Maximum Bitrate BarryWoods's Avatar
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    I have four of these in a computer I built, http://www.netgate.com/product_info....roducts_id=348

    They work pretty good, with both windows and linux support. Fairly inexpensive tool
    Failure is not an option....



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

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