Opportunities of street 3G / 4G antennas to increase data transfer speed in mobile networks

The other day I had the opportunity to test the 3G and 4G antennas near St. Petersburg, which we decided to use.

We have a good mobile Internet signal at our disposal, but only on the second floor of a private house, and since the office is located downstairs on the other side of the house, using mobile goods was not very inconvenient. Therefore, it was decided to investigate the capabilities of modern equipment, namely, to check the capabilities of external 3G / 4G outdoor antennas in obtaining a better communication channel between the nearest base station and a USB modem, then transfer it to a Wi-Fi router for distribution, and start up via cable to the office to the main computer.

Of the equipment involved in the experiment:
- Outdoor / indoor panel antenna URSA 4G (2300-2700 MHz, 18 dB, 31 * 31 * 2.2 cm, N-female);
- Antenna street parabolic LIBRA 3G (1920-2170 MHz, 21 dB, 90 * 60 cm, N-female);
- USB modem Megaphone M-150-1;
- 5-meter cable assembly 5D-FB with N-connectors, Aileron 5m-5D-FB;
- Pigtail adapter for the Aileron-CRC-9-N-female modem.

Much has been written about the modem, a good model, we like the ability to connect MIMO antennas, but in our test the antennas do not support MIMO capabilities.

For the 4G range we will use the URSA 4G antenna, compact, neat, mounted on a bracket in our case, there is a bracket for the mast. Photo:



For the 3G range, we use the huge LIBRA 3G parabolic antenna, reminiscent of a military locator with a width
grids 90 cm! Photo:



Technical access to the facade / visor of the house was possible only on one side, which limited our ability to choose an operator’s base station, but judging by the open information from OpenCellID.org, there are several base stations 4 km from the installation site of the street antenna Megafon-SZ operator. This option suited us completely, because the theoretical coverage radius of 3G / 4G with a signal of 8-10 km, which means we are 100% in the normal coverage area, below the map.



You can also use FindTower apps for iPhone or netmonitor.ru.

The main goal and idea of ​​all these resources is to show users the location of the equipment of mobile operators on a map of the area.

Before starting our dances with tambourines, I would like to say a few words about the mobile Internet. Few people realize this, but mobile Internet traffic is not a priority for cellular network operators, moreover, in some cases, the transmission of digital data, the Internet or video is for them a business with zero income, and sometimes even unprofitable. The main source of income for them are voice connections, everything else is additional options, marketing moves and prestige positions. That is why, the operators set up all their equipment so that they first of all meet the needs of voice connections, and already let the rest go to Internet traffic and so on, moreover, the operators fix the traffic of their base stations and its consumers, so when you get access to mobile the internet

So, before connecting the LIBRA 3G remote parabolic antenna, we had the following picture with the connection and data transfer speed:



Before connecting the URSA 4G panel antenna, we had:



The case of antenna exposure is a very important and important task, ideally this should be done with a handheld spectrum analyzer to see the signal live, so to speak, to identify your base station and tune to the maximum level. If there is no radio spectrum analyzer, you can’t do without a tambourine, modem and cell phone. Our distance from the base station was small, so we managed to choose the angle and direction using the built-in utility in megaphone software, this turned out to be enough. But if the signal level is weaker - look for a spectrum analyzer.

So, in the end, we got on the 3G range:



And on the 4G range:



The results pleased us, especially taking into account the compactness of the 4G antenna and the resulting speed.

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