The simplest, cheapest Wifi amplifier in the world.
Monday, May 8, 2006

It 's not my habit of posting non TRK related stuff on my newspage, but this one I just HAD to tell the world.
Whilst looking to get better access to a hotspot at my girlfriend 's apartment, I tried several possibilities to improve the weak signal I was catching. This ranged from hanging out the window with antennas and wifi adapters to commercial antenna amplifiers. But nothing really boosted the signal to an acceptable rate. And building a tin can antenna like described on many internet sites still seemed too complicated, since it forced you to go and buy special plugs and cabling (although cheap).
No, the solution was much simpeler: please welcome the iron bucket amplifier. In fact the idea is simple: take an iron bucket -mine 's one from Ikea, costs about 4€- aim it at the hotspot and put your USB-in-a-cradle wifi adapter in the front of the bucket. Yes, indeed in the front, in contrary to what you should normally do with a tin can antenna at 3/4 in the back, this goes in the front. This is probably because the bucket has a conical shape, which diverts the signal more to the outer edges. But just try it like it 's displayed in the picture (play with it a little) and watch your signal go as much as 3x than before. In my case, my hotspot is more than 100metres away, inside a building (Lunchgarden Edegem, Belgium) and my antenna on the 5th floor behind a window. Using my bucket amplifier, I boost my signal from about 8% strength to 30%, which gives me perfect transmissions and between 5 and 11mbps speeds.
Enjoy!

Bucket Wifi

      
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