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That connection is for an external GPS antenna (if needed) there is no way to connect an external antenna
for the cell side. There apparently is a "tamper" switch which will disable the unit if you try to open it..
This also works quite well - Powerful External Remote Amplified GPS Antenna Receiver for Garmin Nuvi
No these antennas only improve the signal from the GPS that the M-Cell receives. I am using it so I can put the M-Cell in a closet out of sight, but the GPS antenna will go up through my attic to a ridge vent.
Just a warning... You don't want to place the microcell near your wireless router... My wifi-n devices connect fine but my wifi-g lost all connectivity
Yeah, the microcell instructions say to place it at least a few feet away from wifi routers.
Mine's about 4-5 feet away right now. I had it about 1.5 feet away for a while and it didn't seem to cause any harm with my G and N devices, but I've heard of others having problems with it being so close.
Gilsson Technologies offers several GPS antennas for the AT&T 3G Cisco MicroCell. The Gilsson AT&T MicroCell antenna comes in 3, 9, 16 or 25-feet cable lengths. GPSgeek sells the Gilsson high gain GPS antenna for $19.95:
In addition, one can purchase a 10-feet extension to lengthen the overall distance to 35 feet.
If you need something even longer with lower dB loss in the cable, one can consider using ultra low loss LMR cables with various Gilsson antennas, to place the GPS antenna 50-150 feet away from the MicroCell. FYI, Gilsson designs and produces GPS antennas for military, aircraft, automobile and boating industries, so its quality far exceeds the quality of typical CE products. You can call Gilsson toll free at 866-GILSSON, if you have specific requirements.
Do these external antenas really work? I'm just got the Microcell and can't even register because of no GPS signal. Called tech support and they pretty much said "Return it" because it can't get GPS signal. I have an external antena for my Sirius Radio and asked the support person about the external antena jack on the back of the Microcell and she pretty much ignored the question.
Do these antena work on the Microcell. I was so excited to actual be able to use my cell phone in my house...wow what a concept....
yes the Gillson Antenna that I used works very well. The forum documents lots of legitimate problems but I plugged the Microcell into my AT&T Uverse router and now that I have my antenna the microcell works wonderfully because I was able to place the microcell at a location more central to the house. But I will say that once we get closer to the outside of the house I think the phone battles between leaving the call on the microcell and the outside cell tower and that is when we get the odd drop call. Still much better than what we had to deal with before.
I'm actually impressed that Gillson actually created an account on here to answer that person's question about the length of the cable. Now that's customer service!
And yes, these GPS antennas do seem to work. My microcell is on the floor behind a wall with about 9 feet of cable so the receiver can sit next to my window.
Got my antenna yesterday! Wow what fast service from Gilson! Anyhow, plugged it into the MicoCell and the GPS indicator light is now solid green! I love it when things actually work.
However, now my 3G indicator light is still flashing green. As of last night the "system" was unavailable so I couldn't access my account to see if the unit has been activated. Tried a reboot but no luck. Tried to reboot the router, modem and phone as well, no luck.
Wow, Gilsson answered! Makes me want to buy a GPS antenna even if I don't need it! Thanks Gilsson, great customer service.
Thanks for the response, Glisson! I ordered my antenna with 25ft of cable - and the extra 10 foot extension today!
Hope it does the trick. My Microcell has been rock solid for several weeks now, but I do have it in my basement. I've noticed after a power outage, it's taking an increasingly longer amount of time to get a GPS lock. Now, today after a failure of my UPS (of all things!), I can't get it to GPS lock at all. So, hopefully an antenna will do the trick.
YEAH!! SUCCESS! After adding the antenna, plus Rreconfigured the set up so that the MicroCell was the first in the chain. Rebooted and waited 20 minutes. Then Viola! It works! Still don't get 5K square foot coverage but hey at least I can now use my cell phone in my house!!!
Thanks for the suggestions.
PS I spoke with the tech guys from ATT and I mentioned that external antenna worked. They said that they officially couldn't "recommend" it but that they have heard reports that it works.Go figure. They'd rather have me return the MicroCell rather than have try out a $20 item.
I just got your antenna (25ft cable) and 10 ft. extension cable - 35 ft total length. I'm about 10ft shy of where I need to reach. Can I buy another 10ft extension and still expect reasonably good reception with the antenna, or at that distance (45ft), do I need to switch to the low loss cables you mentioned in your post?
I'm already $45 in on this antenna project (including shipping) plus the $150 I spent on the Microcell to begin with, and I don't really want to turn this into big $$$.
Excuse my confusion...
But how will this antennae help. I thought that everything goes through the router/broadband now.
Does it help with the data
So I guess my next question is - does the microcell need a constant or continuous GPS lock to operate properly?
Sorry for my ignorance on this.
They *claim* it needs to be continuous. It probably doesn't need to be literally continuous, but it certainly needs to be there to start it up, and you don't really know when it's going to want to check while it's working.
My perspective is that it's probably a lot more trouble to provide it with sporadic GPS coverage (say, by arranging a really long power / network cord and moving it where it can "visit" the sky every once in a while) than it is to either put it or an external GPS antenna where it can see the sky.
It's also possible that they're using the GPS signal as a convenient source for a time / frequency reference (the frequency tolerances for UMTS are too tight for an undisciplined crystal source) as well as for positioning. They're using NTP for time, but it may not be accurate enough. I don't know enough about UMTS to be 100% sure of any of this, however.
Yes, you can add another 10-feet extension without any problems. We estimate the dB loss on our RG174 cable is about 0.3 dB/feet of cable + dB loss on the connectors. Knowing our patch antenna can deliver 28dB of gain at the LNA, you will have sufficient dB gain after running 45 feet of cable.
Please let us know if we can be of further service. Thanks !
GPS position (coordinates) is required for all wireless towers. FCC rules require that phone companies to provide location of all handsets in order to trace 911 calls. The GPS location can be provided by activating the GPS chip inside each chipset or it can be determined by triangulating the signal using different radio towers.
That's what I was told by the rep at the ATT store - that it only needs placed near window for GPS during the initial power up/register/boot process. I guess that's why I've been confused about this entire thread. Thanks for your help people.
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