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Old 10-24-2020, 11:33 PM   #1
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Join Date: Jun 2019
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Cell phone boosters.

Heeeeeelp.
I have a 2016 View 24 J

Question 1
Can I use the King Jack tv terminal to boost cell phone reception?
If so I will need a booster and transmitter but won’t need to place an antenna on the rear ladder.
I haven’t found any information on the viability of doing this.

2
There are many cell phone boosters for sale with huge differences in price.
I see well marketed boosters giving the allowed db increase.
I see others at much lower price, possibly smaller corporations, offering similar gains.
I see comparison sites which soon turn out to be marketing tools for one or two well known boosters.
The field seems to be a minefield - ready to prize cash from the unwary.
Where can I find objective advise?
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Old 10-26-2020, 06:56 PM   #2
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It's funny that just yesterday someone pointed me to this LONG thread over on irv2:

https://www.irv2.com/forums/f103/bes...es-442761.html

It's dated around a year ago and has piles of follow-up discussion that I assume got way off track. But the first post is quite informative if you take the time to digest it all.
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Old 10-26-2020, 07:07 PM   #3
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The simple answer is "No". The TV antenna isn't designed for cell phone frequencies. Cell phones operate from 700 to 2100 MHz (varying between 3G, 4G and LTE, carrier and location), while in the US and Canada, the VHF television band broadcasts between 54 and 216 MHz and the UHF band between 470 and 890 MHz.

Even though there is some overlap at the cell phone's lower end, the range of frequencies that any given antenna can accommodate is determined by very specific design parameters.

I'm an amateur radio operator (Ham) and a small difference in antenna design can make a huge difference in performance. This is especially apparent at the high frequency ranges where cell phones operate.
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Old 10-26-2020, 09:02 PM   #4
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The world doesn’t get simpler.

Bob C
Thank you for taking the time to give me an answer
BUT - suppose I rig an antenna to my ladder - attach it to the cable that runs into my RV from the King Jack TV antenna and connect a unit to broadcast within my RV?

I spent some 25 plus years at sea and only was involved with VHF .
All else I left to those “who know” and things haven’t become simpler.

I would have never ever dreamt of diving into some of our systems due my aversion to burning the vessel and all in her.

I do not watch TV so the set up I have is never used.
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Old 10-26-2020, 09:22 PM   #5
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The same comments I made about the antenna apply to the TV amplifier and, potentially to the impedance of the TV coax as well. My advice is to just bite the bullet and do it right with a booster, antenna and coax that are designed for the purpose of boosting cell phone signals. You'll be much happier in the long run. Besides, why disable a perfectly good TV antenna and amplifier?
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Old 10-26-2020, 11:43 PM   #6
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I must learn how to better detail my questions.
I understand your reply and will leave the TV’s in place. I’m only interested in the TV cable.
I refuse to drill holes into my RV roof the TV cable is inviting. A complete cable from the ladder to an internal transmitter will be some 25’ + . From the King Jack 7’ or 8’
I will research impedance of TV coax and see which is preferable.
Thanks again.
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Old 10-27-2020, 08:43 AM   #7
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Tv Antenna cable is 75 ohm while cell booster cable is typically 50 ohm. Using the TV cable will have so much loss of cellular signal that you will negate any benefit from the antenna.

There are 75 ohm boosters and antenna but not for mobile use and are commercial systems at high cost.

Ladder mounting is convenient but usually pretty far from ideal booster install locations. You need to find locations that don’t require adapters and cable extensions. Shorter is better. There is a reason that cellular antennas come with cable pre-attached, not removable and usually shorter than 15’.

Cutting a hole in the roof seems much more daunting than it is in practice. If you have a front cap on your RV it is a super easy place to cut an opening for cable that is easily secured from the elements.

Further, cellular boosters can really help but only in specific certain circumstances. They can’t manufacture a signal where none exists, and all they can do is boost whatever signal is present. That can mean boosting weak, noisy signal - not boosting it into good signal just stronger noisy signal.

Also, the rebroadcast of the boosted signal inside your RV is very limited in range. It’s fine within a few inches of the indoor antenna but drops off quickly in just a couple of feet.

We have a WeBoost Drive 4G-X and find it helpful in about 10% of the places we camp. Many places it’s not needed or degrades the service, in some it makes a difference that really improve cell service, and in others it has no effect and we have no service at all even with the booster. However, this is not used for cell phone boosting, we use it for boosting cellular broadband internet and we place the MiFi device directly next to the indoor antenna. I don’t believe we’ve ever seen the booster improve cell phone service in the RV.

Hope this helps.
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Old 10-27-2020, 08:56 AM   #8
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TV cables in a 2016 View should be RG6.

We have a WeBoost Drive Reach Extreme RV kit installed in our 21VD. Based on the documentation on their website, our outside antenna is connected using low loss RG6 cable (our RV is in storage, so I can't check it right now), which uses an SMA female to SMB adapter to connect the cable to our inside booster.

If you have an RG6 cable already run to the roof, it's possible you might be able to use that for a cell phone booster.

But... if the cable installed by Winnebago isn't a "low loss" cable, then it may not work well with a cell phone booster.

Even if it is a low loss cable, you would need a separate cable just for the cell phone booster, you probably can't share it with a TV or satellite system...

To have confidence you have the correct cabling - to ensure the cell phone booster really works - and that you haven't created any issues with your roof, then have a Winnebago dealer install the cell phone booster.

And if you are looking at WeBoost products, I'd recommend they use the Drive Reach Extreme RV kit instead of the Drive X RV kit. We originally had Drive X RV installed and it didn't provide any real benefit. The X kit comes with a tiny desktop inside antenna, that only provided boosted signal if a cell phone is sitting next to the antenna.

After consulting with WeBoost, we upgraded our inside antenna and replaced the X booster with the Drive booster - and now get increased cell phone signal in most areas in our View. We mounted the larger antenna on the wall at the back of one of our high cabinets (using command strips). The Reach booster is much stronger - and also supports 5G.

When we don't have good RV park WiFi, we'll turn on the WeBoost to boost our cell phone signals, and use one of our 4G/5G smartphones to provide internet for laptops and tablets inside our View.
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Old 10-27-2020, 09:01 AM   #9
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You can find real world cellular booster and antenna info on www.rvmobleinternet.com. They routinely test all of these devices and show results in various locations. They are both RVers and boaters and publish results for both. Plus they have a forum for asking specific questions that they will answer directly. However, they don’t sell anything and so to really benefit from the website you have to pay for premium membership.

They provide the most up to date info you’ll find anywhere on mobile WiFi routers, cell boosters, antenna and data plans. The site is updated constantly because this stuff changes constantly.

I’ve been a member for 4-yrs and find it totally worth the yearly cost.
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Old 10-27-2020, 04:51 PM   #10
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Thank you for your comments. I find it great that members of this group are so helpful. I now have a little thinking to do. Thanks again.
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Old 10-29-2020, 08:34 AM   #11
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I know you don't want to cut a hole in your roof (IMHO, not a big deal) but this thread may help you with some of the issues:

https://www.winnieowners.com/forums/...of-358111.html
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