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Topic # 133399 21-Oct-2013 11:08
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Hi there

I'm hoping I might find a Telecom/XT geek here who could help me.  I don't know anything technical about antennae so layman replies would be much appreciated ...   ;-)

Need to get a new phone - preferably not iPhone (though I know their antenna is better than others), must be touchscreen, Android, not Windows.
We have very poor reception at our place (rural).

So I'm wondering if someone could suggest a good antenna/booster (must it be roof-mounted?) and whether a particular type of phone would be best to go with said booster.

I see there is  'Cel-Fi' but that's way too expensive.  Also Cellutronics - theirs are cheaper but does anyone know how good they are?

Are there any other options?

Also, we have radios with DAB for which we'd also like to improve reception.  Is there a booster/antenna that would do both jobs - i.e. the cellphone and the radios?

Many thanks in advance for any suggestions   :-)

PS:  I'm sure many people will be surprised I prefer not to have an iPhone.  I like the other smartphones 'coz I can use the one cable for Kindle and phone, and I hate the ITunes arrangement for music.  Plus they're expensive!   :-D


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  Reply # 919059 21-Oct-2013 11:19
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Cellutronics units are these approved by Telecom NZ for use?

Using a active RF amp on mobile bands is not allowed unless approved by the band / spectrum license holder

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  Reply # 919067 21-Oct-2013 11:32
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"Also, we have radios with DAB for which we'd also like to improve reception."

What are you listening to on DAB?, as far as I was aware there is only a trial by Kordia in Auckland and Wellington rebroadcasting the regular Radio NZ feeds?


 
 
 
 


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  Reply # 919081 21-Oct-2013 12:01
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I have heard good thinks about these antennas.

http://www.tennatron.co.nz/cellphone/

Looked at installing one a couple of years ago - but we ended up deciding we could live with the reception - helped after a heap of pine next door was cleared :)

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  Reply # 919090 21-Oct-2013 12:09
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Telecom don't have anything active approved for the XT network, 2Degrees have approved (but don't sell directly) the Cel-Fi and Vodafone don't have an active device approved either but they offer the "sure signal" femto-cell solution where you need Vodafone / Telstra Clear broadband, but no Vodafone coverage.

Any other active devices are unlawful and the spectrum managers (ie the Cell cos) will find the devices.

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  Reply # 919092 21-Oct-2013 12:13
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knoydart what do you mean by ' but no Vodafone coverage ' ?

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  Reply # 919099 21-Oct-2013 12:25
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johnr: knoydart what do you mean by ' but no Vodafone coverage ' ?

Presumably that there's little point in buying a Sure Signal if you already have coverage.



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  Reply # 919115 21-Oct-2013 12:36
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Thanks for this info

Wellygary, the DAB was provided with a Panasonic Airplay stereo unit. We tune the stereo into FM stations. We don't have to use the DAB if that makes a difference to booster options.

Johnr, Telecom suggested Cellutronics to me, so I presumed they are okayed by Telecom.

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  Reply # 919116 21-Oct-2013 12:37
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johnr: knoydart what do you mean by ' but no Vodafone coverage ' ?


I mean that you need the broadband for back haul on the sure signal but you do not need wider Vodafone coverage required for it to work indoors for instance.

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  Reply # 919118 21-Oct-2013 12:38
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Behodar: Presumably that there's little point in buying a Sure Signal if you already have coverage.


My boss has one for his house despite being hill top in Lower Hutt and coverage being provided by various call sites

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  Reply # 919121 21-Oct-2013 12:41
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bramwell: Johnr, Telecom suggested Cellutronics to me, so I presumed they are okayed by Telecom.

As far as I know, the Cellutronics passive repeaters don't require a licence because they don't "tamper" with the signal at all.

knoydart: My boss has one for his house despite being hill top in Lower Hutt and coverage being provided by various call sites

*confused*

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  Reply # 919125 21-Oct-2013 12:46
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Behodar:
knoydart: My boss has one for his house despite being hill top in Lower Hutt and coverage being provided by various call sites

*confused*


He found that even with the height and location of the house, devices would drop connections frequently, so he bought a sure signal to enable good reception

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  Reply # 919130 21-Oct-2013 12:52
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Interesting, although technically that could be considered "poor coverage" :)

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  Reply # 919193 21-Oct-2013 13:52
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nutbugs: I have heard good thinks about these antennas.

http://www.tennatron.co.nz/cellphone/

Looked at installing one a couple of years ago - but we ended up deciding we could live with the reception - helped after a heap of pine next door was cleared :)


I've done installs of these in Nelson and can confirm they're really good, they're simply a unpowered booster but do work very well if you're receiving fringe coverage.




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  Reply # 919252 21-Oct-2013 15:48
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I think either of those providers should be ok.

I don't think there are any approved active (ie powered) repeaters supported by Telecom. The best plan is to use a an antenna and get a phone that supports direct connect (R55 springs to mind as one such model) and then you are away.

I know of a few people who have been playing with that in fringe areas getting data connections 70km+ away from where the cellsite is and getting 8mb+ speeds when on their normal handset they struggle to get .1mb.

Any active repeaters would tend to end up with a visit from RSM as they get a bit grumpy about how the spectrum space gets used.

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  Reply # 919450 21-Oct-2013 21:51
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A friend at their batch sticks the USB stick at the focal point of an old ihug dish I gave them pointing outwards in a direction they found by trial and error to get enough telecom signal to be able to be online. Without it there is nothing unless you climb up on the roof and then its just one bad of erratic performance.




Richard rich.ms

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