on November 13, 2013
A cellular signal booster is a must-have for anybody who lives in or constantly drives through areas of poor cellular signal. Poor cellular signal is caused by distance from a cellular tower as well as manmade obstructions. A reliable and working cellular signal boosting solution is one which allows you to make calls and utilize data at fast speeds.
Choosing the right cellular signal booster requires evaluating what your needs are. There are many different solutions for many different needs. A good system is not necessarily the most powerful or the one which supports the most cellular frequencies or networks but one which works how you need it to work.
Range and coverage area are important aspects to consider when purchasing a cellular signal boosting solution. Range refers to your distance from the cellular tower while coverage area refers to how large the area which requires a cellular signal boost is. The farther you are from a cellular tower and the larger the area which requires coverage, the more powerful the system you need would be.
There are many different types of cellular signal boosters available on the consumer market. The main two categories include ones for a mobile (or vehicle) setting and ones for an in-building setting. Cellular signal boosting solutions designed for a vehicle can work indoors in a desktop setting while cellular signal boosting solutions designed for an in-building setting must be stationary and are dangerous to use in a vehicle setting due to the high power (as they are designed for large coverage areas). Within vehicle solutions, there are, wired (or Direct Connect) boosters, cradle boosters and wireless boosters while all in-building solutions are wireless.
Wired and cradle boosters are single-user solutions. It is made up of two components and cables to connect them together. These include an outside antenna to pull the cellular signal and an amplifier or cradle with built in amplifier to enhance the signal. The boosted signal is transmitted to a cellular device only when it is directly attached to the booster or placed onto the cradle. Due to the efficiency, less powerful systems deliver suitable signal strength gains for most applications. This type of booster is recommended for areas where mobility is less important. Cradle boosters require a hands-free system when the device is docked and wired solutions are limited by the length of the cable.
Wireless boosters can deliver the boosted signal to multiple devices simultaneously making it a multi-user solution. This type of solution offers free mobility within the coverage areas for a user. It is made up of three components and cables to connect them together. These components include an outside antenna to pull the cellular signal, an amplifier to enhance the cellular signal and an inside antenna to broadcast the boosted signal. Due to the physical separation between the inside antenna and device the system must compensate with greater power to bring about the same benefit as a wired or cradle solution.
The amount of power of a system is measured in decibels (dB) of signal gain. To know how powerful of a system is required, it is important to know that a 3dB increase would provide for twice the power of a signal and a 6dB increase can double the coverage area. For an example, the SOHO 60 (801245) and DT Desktop (801247) amplifiers can provide for 60dB gain while the SOHO 65 (805045) and DB Pro (801262) can provide for a 65dB gain. Taking a cellular signal boosting solution with either of the first two and keeping all antennas and cables constant, replacing the amplifier with one of the latter two can provide for almost twice the coverage area. This makes a cellular signal boosting solution designed for one particular area of a home now capable of possibly covering the entire home.
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