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jasnick
Level 10: Junior Detective

Smart Antenna question for Telstra

Answered

This is a very expensive option - I have read the data  on the website and would like to know what would happen if I bought one and it didn't work.  Have occasional one bar inside the house - horrendously expensive as it is, I might consider buying it if I could be guaranteed my money back if it didn't work.  I'd hate to buy it and find out the reception was no better than it was before and it seems to me the only way to test it would be to install it.

2 ACCEPTED SOLUTIONS

Accepted Solutions
Level 21: Augmented
Accepted Solution

Re: Smart Antenna question for Telstra

Hi Jasnick,

 

I can't comment about your query in regards to a yagi antenna but I'm quite sure Telstra have a refund guarentee in regards to the rest of their antenna range if it doesnt' help your service.

Lathania

_____________________________________________
I'm a Telstra employee posting on my own volition, my opinions and comments are my own and may not reflect Telstra's values and policies.
jasnick
Level 10: Junior Detective
Accepted Solution

Re: Smart Antenna question for Telstra

Thanks Lathania

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Ben_F
Community Alumni (Retired)

Re: Smart Antenna question for Telstra


@jasnick wrote:

This is a very expensive option - I have read the data  on the website and would like to know what would happen if I bought one and it didn't work.  Have occasional one bar inside the house - horrendously expensive as it is, I might consider buying it if I could be guaranteed my money back if it didn't work.  I'd hate to buy it and find out the reception was no better than it was before and it seems to me the only way to test it would be to install it.


If the product didn't meet your intended needs (ie: to extend the coverage inside your home) and you made Telstra aware of these needs, i would assume you are entitled to request a refund or replacement under the Australian Consumer Law.

 

B.

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jasnick
Level 10: Junior Detective

Re: Smart Antenna question for Telstra

Thanks Ben   - I did try to discuss this with the guy at the Telstra shop  but he wasn't even aware the product was actually  available!   Not a complaint as such as the service otherwise was great.  Needed to update the phone anyway so am not actually any worse off and have a super-duper phone - just not inside!

 

I would have thought Telstra would have   let staff know this was now available. He was aware it was coming but was a bit shocked at the price when I told him what it was.

 

I am going to start by reporting  a black spot and go on from there.

Level 21: Augmented
Accepted Solution

Re: Smart Antenna question for Telstra

Hi Jasnick,

 

I can't comment about your query in regards to a yagi antenna but I'm quite sure Telstra have a refund guarentee in regards to the rest of their antenna range if it doesnt' help your service.

Lathania

_____________________________________________
I'm a Telstra employee posting on my own volition, my opinions and comments are my own and may not reflect Telstra's values and policies.
jasnick
Level 10: Junior Detective
Accepted Solution

Re: Smart Antenna question for Telstra

Thanks Lathania
Ben_F
Community Alumni (Retired)

Re: Smart Antenna question for Telstra


Lathania wrote: 

I can't comment about your query in regards to a yagi antenna but I'm quite sure Telstra have a refund guarentee in regards to the rest of their antenna range if it doesnt' help your service.


Its not a Yagi Antenna, its the Telstra Smart Antenna (ie: A repeater) that the OP is referring to Smiley Happy

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Level 21: Augmented

Re: Smart Antenna question for Telstra

OH. The word antenna threw me off lol. Ignore my post I know nothing about this device Smiley Wink
Lathania

_____________________________________________
I'm a Telstra employee posting on my own volition, my opinions and comments are my own and may not reflect Telstra's values and policies.
wdtvandsound
Level 11: Detective

Re: Smart Antenna question for Telstra

The awareness thing is this product, TMSA or Telstra Mobile Smart Antenna is not being pushed by Telstra as it is a fix for those that push Telstra for a solution to BOOST their 3G Next-G signal for phone and Data internet, which two boxes connected to a power point some 10 meters approx apart, with one at a window (WU) and the other unit at the coverage location (CU). 

 

 This product is not an advertised device, as it is “not a retailed product” as it is only delivered to the customer’s address where it is intended to be used, when you go through mobile complaints, they put you through a rigorous round of questioning as to ask, do you really absolutely need one,  with “mobile assurance” as they won’t let just anyone have one!

 

Telstra shops are not aware of this device, as they are not told of its existence, as it is a need to know only product.

 

 Call Mobile Faults to save a lot of phone time, ring (125111) and Technical Support (1800305307) to order a Telstra installed Yagi Antenna to make it work, when you don’t get better than 2 bars of signal on your phone at your best window.

The cost is $720 or payments or $30 p/m for 24 months, a total of $720. A Telstra tech will set it up for a additional $84.

 

I have done many installs and they work brilliantly!!!!!

Covering up to 30m from the unit, only hindered by metal walls.

Good luck in perusing good signal!

 

These are my own comments and not of Telstra

I'm not a Telstra employee.
I'm a Wireless 3G/4G LTE/4GX Antenna Sub-contractor and these are my opinions and not of Telstra.
wally45
Level 2: Rookie

Re: Smart Antenna question for Telstra

I bought a smart antenna direct from Telstra to connect with an existing Yagi aerial - also supplied by Telstra. Both were also installed by Telstra so quite an expensive exercise - but worthwhile provided that it worked. Then...

With telephone (Nokia, iPhone, HTC we have vasty improved coverage. However, even though we had two bars coverage with the Yagi antenna and quite good Bigpond wireless mobile sppeds when our modem was direcly coupled to the Yagi, we can get absolutely no internet connectivity once we tried to connect using the smart antenna. After spending 10 hours and more trying to resolve the issue with Telstra support I got the complete runaround once someone decided (level 3 escalation) that the smart antenna was the problem. However, three weeks later we are still waiting for Telstra to get back to us with arrangments for a replacement or whatever.

IMO I would not spend $1300-plus on this solution unless you made absolutely sure that the tech did not leave your premises until both phone and internet connectivity are availalbe and working. In our case only telephony was testing and found to be working correctly.

If anyone has a comment on how to confiigure this so-called self-configuring device so that we do get internet  connectivity I would be very pleased to hearr form them. But meanwhile I could not recommend believing all the information that is published by both Telsra and Netgear as to a fourfold improvement in internet data speeds - we got a total loss of any internet service - although - of course - we are still paying for it...

jasnick
Level 10: Junior Detective

Re: Smart Antenna question for Telstra

I don't understand why you need both?  Could you connect to the Internet before using the so-called Smart Antenna?

I am still toying with the idea of getting one to save having to go outside  and finding a suitable spot to make calls on my HTC.  I still have a landline and use that for the Internet.  No issues with that.

 

I thought the Smart Antenna was simply for improving the signal for mobiles phones.

wally45
Level 2: Rookie

Re: Smart Antenna question for Telstra

(By the way I am writng this in Sydney using cable broadband but the problem installation is in central western NSW near Orange). 

The YAGI antenna was installed because we could not get any coverage at all without. But we had to be hard-wired to the Yagi antenna to use it. This meant that there was only one place where we could get mobile reception or use the internet - which happened to be in a shed not in our house, because that is where the Yagi was installed. The smart antenna was intended to give us telephony and internet without having to undo/unplug the mobile phone (an ITC thing)  and then connect the Bigpond modem when we wanted to use the internet, but also to give us coverage in our house rather than only in the shed, and to let us have both the telephone and mobile connectivity at the one time. It has not worked out that wayand IMO Telstra need to be a bit more proactive in dealing with this kind of problem. Unfortunatel I can get no sense whatsoever out of their telephone support people and Telstra provide no useful information with the antenna so you cannot even work out what the problem might be....

wally45
Level 2: Rookie

Re: Smart Antenna question for Telstra

Sorry - a bit more information. Both Telstra and Netgear make it clear that the smart antenna is intended to also boost data speeds by 4 times - but we have gone from quite reasonable speeds with the hard-wired Yagi to nothing at all with the smart antenna - even thought the smart antenna is hard-wired to the Yagi. That actually is not quire correct - we can get a signal with the mobile broadband moden, but cannot achieve a connection to Google, Yahoo, Governemnt deparatments such as BOM, internet banking or anything else. That too is not quite correct - we did get a connection to Google once at about 0530 in the morning but it died after about 1 minute, and was so slow that it timed out... I continue to think that there is an underlying problem with the smart antenna but getting any sense or resolution with Telstra is simply not possible. If you do not need internet then maybe you will be happy with the product - I am quite disgusted with it as it does not peform in any way close to what Telstra or the manufacturer claim - but probably because the one we have is faulty.

jasnick
Level 10: Junior Detective

Re: Smart Antenna question for Telstra

I understand - same old story. I am in WA, fringe area for mobiles though next door neighbour has no problem!

Was thinking (only thinking!) that if we got a Smart Antenna  we could use that and ditch the landline, but if you can't get Internet and Phone at the same time,  looks like there might be a problem Smiley Surprised

 

Was in Sydney recently and had occasion to visit several Telstra  shops re a problem with the phone recognising my simcard after returning from overseas, and I took the opportunity to mention  the Smart Antenna - you should have seen their eyes glaze over!  No-one had any answers.

 

Considering that repeaters are available for about $200+ - yes, I know they are illegal - I think the price Telstra is charging is a real rip-off.

Ben_F
Community Alumni (Retired)

Re: Smart Antenna question for Telstra

Sounds like a faulty unit, does the internet work via your Mobile at all?

 

B.

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wally45
Level 2: Rookie

Re: Smart Antenna question for Telstra

Yes - internet via mobile works fine...

The big problem is getting Telstra to even get back to me - after 10 hours on the phone to thier 1300 number, and someone actually stating that the antennae was the problem the next thing they say (after going around in circles again) is that it is working fine... I would have say that the next step is not going to contact them via a call centre - I simply cannot afford the time or the agony.

mcleansridges
Level 1: Cadet

Re: Smart Antenna question for Telstra

Wel, I think that $720 is a complete rip off if you are in an area where the Telstra map shows good coverage.

 

We have four mobile phones, landline and ADSL with Telstra. I am in Port Macquarie, and am appalled that I have to pay that amount to get decent mobile reception within my own home.

jasnick
Level 10: Junior Detective

Re: Smart Antenna question for Telstra

I agree!  They should make them available at no cost  to people like us who cannot get reception inside.  If  [illegal] repeaters are about $200, how come Telstra's antenna is so expensive!

Ben_F
Community Alumni (Retired)

Re: Smart Antenna question for Telstra

Usually the reason you can't get indoor coverage is because of the type of material your house is made of.

Telstra Coverage Maps are a best efforts attempt to show where you might get coverage. They have never been advertised as exact and they don't cover indoor vs outdoor usage.

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tracer01
Level 2: Rookie

Re: Smart Antenna question for Telstra

I have just self installed a TMSA about a month ago. Had 1 bar at window with my phone. After mucking around a bit with location of the window unit and getting the separation distance better to the coverage unit (7-8 on cov unit) , it works like a dream up to around 10 - 15 metres from coverage unit. I then connected an omni style external antenna and have 2-3 bars on my phone up to around 20m from coverage unit which only gets better the closer I get to it.

My paperwork states that it will improve mobile reception, but they can not guarantee that nextg network speeds will increase but generally i have found it pretty good with 1.87Mbps to 5.35Mbps (rare) download but sometimes it just wont start at all and then I switch to my home wifi. (I bought the antenna for voice only)

Have had to move window unit due to overheating, the unit went into alarm mode (red flash on window unit) and shut down.

Today again I have a green flashing light which is "Unit is attempting to complete regulatory compliance" and it just stays like that for ever until i reset with the little button on the base of the window unit. According to my paperwork it looks like the network equip can adjust or disable the device when required. Resolution for this states "please check your device in a couple of hours" Overall i am very happy with the antenna as long as it stays connected which may be an ongoing problem. We will see. I am letting the problem develop at this stage as i can not guarantee my sanity trying to talk to someone who has never heard of this unit, been there done that. 

I accepted the price was worth it and so I bought it. There are also passive antenna options available that are very cheap and work to some degree as they have limitations on distance. Regards Dave  

jasnick
Level 10: Junior Detective

Re: Smart Antenna question for Telstra

May I ask why you had to buy an omni antenna as well?

 

I also have one bar at window.

 

Does the 10-15 metres coverage (from the coverage unit) extend through walls, say into another room or only in the one room?

 

Why did it overheat?  Sun on window or what?

 

My issue is with my colorbond  roof I suppose as I step outside and get 5 bars.  So annoying !!!!

 

What was your reason for no mobile signal inside: fringe area reception or tin roof?

tracer01
Level 2: Rookie

Re: Smart Antenna question for Telstra

I had an omni already in place so i hooked it up after I had trouble with overheating. Antenna gives the booster unit even more signal to amplify I guess. I am in a fringe area (antenna required) on Telstra map, but we are only 2kms from tower behind a small ridge and very heavy rainforest. No mobile signal at all in house. Tower is a small solar powered repeater for our community.

 

 I have colourbond on external walls and roof but very open style house and it still works well. It uses wifi between the units so it should be better for going through timber walls. House is double story pole home with window unit near top of gable,  coverage unit is down stairs at ground level and the boosted signal is available every where, it just varies a bit, floor and internal walls are timber. The more you move the two units apart the stronger the broadcasted Nextg signal is.  Without distance unit will not work.

 

Once window unit is in, hook coverage unit up to a long extension lead and go for a walk or plug the unit into a 240 outlet in different rooms etc until the coverage readout hits 8 or 9. Or locate the unit where you require the strongest signal.  Once setup the further you move away from the coverage unit with your phone the less signal you will get. It wont be the same everywhere in your house.

 

Unit got hot from arvo sun hitting it. Moved it away from window a bit and signal dropped, hence the ext antenna hookup. (Yagi may even be better).

 

Telstra quoted around $550 to fit, so I self installed. I read the instructions, plugged both units in and turned on the powerpoint...Done.There also is a self install hotline number to help you, but I didnt ring it.

 

One note, because of the unusual angle of the ext antenna fitting on the unit you will need a SMA Male connecter fitted directly on the end of antenna cable. Will not fit with adaptors etc, 90 deg elbow SMA Male may also fit. Most antennas seem to come with an FME fitting which will not fit even with an adaptor.

 

I have no experience with this and have just researched online. Theres not much info. OE unit is a Netgear MSRB2500 from memory. I came across an excellent video showing how it works but cant find it.  Regards Dave

jasnick
Level 10: Junior Detective

Re: Smart Antenna question for Telstra

"Telstra quoted around $550 to fit" ???

Just to fit or did that include the Smart Antenna? I thought they were $720 plus fitting if required.

I have a double brick one story with tin roof. 5 bars outside, 1 inside at front window,  even though I am in a covered area according to the map. Treed area also. I think I would also self-install - how hard can it be?

I also have been researchng this issue for months. Its the price that is the stumbling block.

tracer01
Level 2: Rookie

Re: Smart Antenna question for Telstra

$550  was just fitting, we are a bit remote. If you have 5 bars outside your house the unit will work very well for you i reckon. I had to add ext antenna because I havnt got 5 bars outside.

 

If you can turn on a powerpoint your half qualified already. I took the $30 p/m x 24  repay option so it doesnt hurt so much. Ask them if they will accept it back if it doesnt work. I have heard they might. Be patient, you have to jump through some hoops with operators first.  Also free delivery is super super quick via courier, ours was anyway. Good luck.

jasnick
Level 10: Junior Detective

Re: Smart Antenna question for Telstra

"you have to jump through some hoops with operators first. "
Yes, I've gathered that from just reading this site!

Its still an obscene price for a few bits of plastic....I'm still thinking about it!

Do you have a landline as well? We were thinking of ditching the landline if we could get the mobile to work properly.
tracer01
Level 2: Rookie

Re: Smart Antenna question for Telstra

We have moved our ultimate landline down to lowest monthly plan and diverted to our mobile which is now on an XL plan (all calls free) while we test smart antenna. Then we ditch the landline and away we go. Our landline is very unrelialble and we think we will have better service from the mobile network especially with the wet season coming.
jasnick
Level 10: Junior Detective

Re: Smart Antenna question for Telstra

Thanks Dave - good luck!
wally45
Level 2: Rookie

Re: Smart Antenna question for Telstra

WeIt is really pleasing to hear that someone does get this ... antenna to do as TELSTRA claims  - it is supposed to boost both voice and data. We are actually getting worse and worse performance - which simply reinforces the original conclusion - reached by TELSTRA - that the unit we were supplied with, and which WAS INSTALLED BY TELSTRA - is FAULTY. My next step - after trying to sort out the mess since installation on 4 September 2012 - is to try one more time with Telstra and to then go extremely public. $1300 totally wasted as far as I am concermed. I would suggest that TELSTRA can get well and truly -  

 

 

jasnick
Level 10: Junior Detective

Re: Smart Antenna question for Telstra

Wally - what is your home situation - tin roof or whatever?  Location?  Its a lot of money if it doesn't  work - plus all the hassle and aggravation!

Ben_F
Community Alumni (Retired)

Re: Smart Antenna question for Telstra

I think people need to understand what the antenna does..... It will rebroadcast the signal from the network inside your home, but if there is congestion or issues on that network, then it won't give you "faster" speeds.

 

B.

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tracer01
Level 2: Rookie

Re: Smart Antenna question for Telstra

 
tracer01
Level 2: Rookie

Re: Smart Antenna question for Telstra

Hey Wally, i may of had an issue like yours when i installed mine. I had the antenna disconnected from my home broadband modem and was going to try it on the smart antenna. While the antenna was disconnected i am guessing the home broadband modem connected through the smart antenna and it all went downhill from there. Down to nothing infact. Sounds identicle to your symptoms. From memory it was the same even with the the antenna reconnected. I just turned off smart antenna. Got home broadband fired up. Then turned it off and set up the smart antenna with another antenna. All good.

Also rang faults today about my flashing green fault light and they have suggested that if the window unit and home broadband modem are too close there could be interferrence between the wifi signal. Not holding my breath but its worth a try. Have you also tried the reset button near the power jack under the window unit. Let us know how you go

Dave
wally45
Level 2: Rookie

Re: Smart Antenna question for Telstra

Situation is Rural Central West NSW - betweeen Mullion Creek and Kerrs Creek. Coverage map shows need for external antenna. We have two barts using YAgi Antenna when direct couple to a Telstra explorer phone, and quite good iBigpond internet under the same situation. However, aerail is on a shed some distance from our new house and we ensure there is a direct line of sight to the window unit throughb a glass window. If we ever get to the stage where it actually works I will put a window in the wall of the wshed so that we can secure the conrtents and the aerial. Meanwhile we ave to take the risk.. Telstra installer said will work fine - window unit is hard-wired to the YAGI aerial in the shed (which is metal - but we leave doors open.) Even with doors totally closed we get good coverage for telephony - a count of 9 on the indoor unit, or 7 with the doors open, with 2 bars on teh outdoor unit. However - as I have told Telstra/Bigpond untril I am blue in the face - we cannot repeat cannot get any sort of reliable Bigpond service using the smart antenna... Somertimes we get a very very very very slooow connection, which times out as soom as you try to do do anything - even though we are getting five bars on the modem... Have tried different browsers, pinged various sites, found all to be a bit of a mess - sometimes 4 time-outs, sometimes ony 2 of 4 - but regardless of times, we cannot get any kind of reliable data connection - even though the claims are clearly that data servies will also be improved.  Even bought a new modem to seee if that helped - another $250.00... Still the ... system does not work. AS you can gather - I am totally disagusted with the whole con-job.

wally45
Level 2: Rookie

Re: Smart Antenna question for Telstra

Dave

 

It does soundas though the issue you have is very similar. My problem is taht the whole idea of the smart antenna is to give me both telephone and broadband for business purposes. A second antenna is not particularly viable as we would have to hard-wire it from the shed roof too - and I am not sure what kind of interferance we would get...

 My preference is to have the smart antenna work as Telstra claims that it does...

 

Thanks for your input

Wally45

Highlighted
tracer01
Level 2: Rookie

Re: Smart Antenna question for Telstra

Wally, it sounds like you are in a really poor signal area. I have one bar at my window with my phone. I put the window unit in the same place and the readout on the front of it shows four to five bars. Once the ext antenna was connected it shows solid 5 bars. If you only are only getting 2 bars on your mobile with a yagi i would guess you might have too little signal. You must have 1-2 bars at your window with using a phone without an ext antenna. I have 5 bars on my mobile when direct coupled to a yagi so our situations are vastly different.

I understand that these units are not for fringe areas but more for situations where there is relatively good signal (1-2 bars at window with your handset) but poor inside. It multiplies that signal inside. If you have a crappy signal to start with it will only multiply that crappy signal.

In low signal, voice will work and data wont. Its that simple. Stick an antenna on it and get it working or your liable to blow a gasket.


Dave



wally45
Level 2: Rookie

Re: Smart Antenna question for Telstra

Dave

 

Thanks for the detail - this is the very first bit of sense that I have got in regard to the so-called smart antenna. If your suggestions are correct then I am just a tad unimpressed with the level of competence displayed by Telstra. I will have to look at how we overcome the situation, but a forest of aerials may be the only answer.

 

Wally45

tracer01
Level 2: Rookie

Re: Smart Antenna question for Telstra

Hey Wally you can purchase a splitter so you can run both services off the same antenna and use both at the same time. I understand you have to sacrifice a small amount of signal but it could be an option. Good luck. Dave
wally45
Level 2: Rookie

Re: Smart Antenna question for Telstra

Thanks Dave _ I am looking into how I deal with the situation - sounds like I will need to move the Yagi and use a somewhat higher mast - then I can try a splitter.  It would just be nice to know if it will work before I spend any more money geting coverage in an area that Telstra says is fine with an external antenna...

Wally 45

drg
Level 1: Cadet

Re: Smart Antenna question for Telstra

I was quoted $580 for a Telstra installation. I was given the impression that if it didn't work I had done my dough. I have limited reception and very, very occasionally, 1 bar. IS it worth a go at those odds? I am in a wheelchair and having to go to town to do my banking is just not good enough. I want what everyone else has in order to be living a normal life in my chosen community. Would appreciate other people in Windellama area to input if possible on my chances.
jasnick
Level 10: Junior Detective

Re: Smart Antenna question for Telstra

After months of deliberation and baulking at the price, went ahead and got one. Best I could get before was 1 bar at  front bedroom window some of the time.  I now get 2 and sometimes 3 at bedroom window but the second unit shows 7-9 which is what it is supposed to for a good result.

 

As for installation, I am sure you could do it yourself!  Its only plug in. Put the window unit where you can get at least 1 bar and try the second unit in multiple places until you get a result of at least 7. I reckon that is all an installer would do anyway. I tried several places high up on top of cupboards and low down near the floor and in between, and got the best result  near a window.

 

It is wonderful to be able to use a mobile phone as others can do but I still really resent the cost.

sarahl
Level 1: Cadet

Re: Smart Antenna question for Telstra

That's because Telstra are ripping us off because their's is the only option available in Australia. It's a bloody disgrace that we should pay over $700 to receive a service we are already paying for in our service charges. I need one and I only live 20km from my nearest tower!! Telstra should be providing these free of charge with a refundable deposit to protect against loss.

yattalunga
Level 1: Cadet

Re: Smart Antenna question for Telstra

I have a Smart Antenna that worked well until recently. Now when it turns on it runs though it's startup shoes some green bar quickly then nothing - no bars but green indicator is on. I still get 1 bar directly on my phone. do I have a faulty unit or is the Telstra 3G network not letting my Smart Antenna to register?
Telstra (Retired)
Telstra (Retired)

Re: Smart Antenna question for Telstra

Hi yattalunga,

 

That isn't good to hear. Does the status light on the unit flash or is it solid? If its solid, which colour is it?

 

If the light is flashing green the Window Unit is competing regulatory compliance checks, this could take several minutes. Please make sure that the Window Unit is not sitting directly adjacent to a Wi-Fi device or cordless telephone, then wait for the Status Light to stop flashing.

 

If it is flashing red, the Window Unit has switched to a low power mode because the environment is too warm. Check if the vents are blocked or covered on the Window Unit. Move the Window Unit to a cooler spot and please wait and the Window Unit will start operating again when the environment cools down.

 

I hope this helps.

 

-Matt W

 

 

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AW_99
Level 7: Deputy Inspector

Re: Smart Antenna question for Telstra

Hi all,

There is no doubt that a lot of Telstra customers having difficulties with mobile services coverage. Getting good technical advice could be much improved.

Having said that I'd like to start one more pettition to bring Australian operators and Technicians back.

 

All the attach info is to assist you as a valuable Telstra customers in making correct decision which mobile antenna would suit your individual setup / situation. Whether you are located just on the metro fringes, rural or hills understanding basics of antenna attenuation / gain could very much help.   

 

The fact is  that the higher the gain, the more susceptible the antenna signal is to obstruction and interference. So here is a guide as to what the different radiation patterns look like and where different levels of gain will be your best solution.

Antenna Gain Radiation Patterns

 

High Gain :  11.1 dBi,  8.1 dBi

High gain antennas take all of the inputted signal and transmit it along the horizontal plane in a tight, narrow beam. Yes, the signal does travel further. This is a definite advantage in areas where the terrain is quite flat, provided there are few trees or buildings in the signal path. The narrow high gain signal will be obstructed by hills, trees and buildings. So in mountainous country or around dense city areas, high gain is not for you. Signal drop-out will be frequent.

Medium Gain :  6.1 dBi,  5.1 dBi

A medium gain antenna redistributes some of the signal that would have been sent vertically up and down and pushes it along the horizontal plane. This causes the signal to travel further, but still in a fairly wide beam.The signal is less likely to be blocked by hills or tall buildings, making a medium gain antenna the best choice for those in suburban areas and the larger rural towns.

Low  Gain :  2.1 dBi

Unity gain simply means that the antenna pattern radiates in all directions equally, like a round ball.The broad omni-directional signal gets around and over buildings, hills, valleys and trees. Therefore, a low gain antenna is actually the best choice for those living in high rise city areas or out in bushy and hilly country.

 

There are typically 3 Yagi antennas recommend for different areas depending on their terrain type and distance. The other antennas listed here are suited to more unique situations.

  • 12dBi LPDA Yagi: Short Distance (1-15km) or Nearby Hills (1-5km)
  • 14dBi or 15dBi Yagi: Moderate Distance (15-30km)
  • 16dBi Yagi: Long Distance (30-70km) or Flat Areas (hills > 15km away)

It's also worth mentioning that all these antennas need to be plugged in to your mobile phone or modem with a patch lead. If your mobile phone doesn't support a direct connection you can instead use a cradle like you would in your car.

yagi gain explanation 14dBi vs 16dBi house directional antenna

 

 

Below picture illustrates that if your house is within 3-5 km from the station but behind the hill - low gain antenna should work best as the attenuation pattern is more roundish and will reach the other side of the hill.

 

In mobile phone antenna for car truck vehicle aerial which is better gain explanation

 

 

Some of the mobile antennas will work just fine and can easily be connected to the Universal Cradle I.E.

 

Smoothtalker Universal Cradle with Dash/Desk Mount and Antenna Connection - No Charger

dash desk mounted smoothtalker universal cradle for external antennas and aerial
 
 
SKU: CK589-AMD-BTHUN1A

Dash Mounted Universal Cradle with Antenna Connector
- Dashboard, desk, or table mounting
- High performance passive induction antenna connection (FME Male)
- Desktop 240V/12V Power pack available.
Why use an external antenna cradle?

Next time you're out-and-about look around you - every day thousands of Australians use external antennas to enjoy uninterrupted voice calls, fast 3G internet, and eliminate blackspots. If you're in a rural, hilly, low signal area, or you can't get a good signal indoors or in the car there's no need to tear your hair out over important phone calls dropping out half way - an external antenna is often all you need. This high performance cradle is designed specifically for the phone, and it's quick installation makes for a fast way to improve mobile service.

Smoothtalker cradles are renown for their low loss inductive antenna coupling, ensuring the highest possible passive signal boost for your mobile phone. The universal FME Male connector means your new cradle will work with any standard mobile phone antenna without the need for messy adapters or patch leads.

 

And checking network compatibility of the unit should give you basic confirmation that you've made the right decision.

 

Network CompatibilityYes/NoGain
Telstra Next-G™ (850MHz)
compatible
6.5dBi
New Vodafone Network (850MHz)*
*Please check Vodafone Coverage Map.
compatible
6.5dBi
Optus Regional 3G (900MHz)*
*Please check Optus Coverage Map.
compatible
6.5dBi
All carriers - calls & text (900MHz)
compatible
6.5dBi
Telstra 4G (1800MHz)
compatible
3dBi
Optus 4G (1800MHz)
compatible
3dBi
All carriers - 3G internet (2100MHz)*
Please check your network's Coverage Map.
compatible
3dBi

 

Best of luck

Cheers

AW_99

 

 

 

 

 

lemon
Level 4: Private Eye

Re: Smart Antenna question for Telstra

Great information there AW_99.

The Smart Antenna/ Repeaters are unfortunately designed more for "domestic" situations to improve coverage at certain locations within a building. Its pretty useful on its own , without an external antenna if there is sufficient signal available in a location somewhere around the home, like a window on the side of the house facing the cell tower.

Whilst not really intended for more common problems like weak signal in rural areas, the Cel-Fi repeater (Smart Antenna) can be used with a external antenna to improve connection in very low signal situations. by fitting either a Yagi or Omni antenna.

Most situations work better with the Yagi Style and a 16dBi with very low-loss LMR400 coax cable is the minimum requirement. These work great: smartantenna.com.au

But if the signal to your location is reflected, refracted off of surrounding terrain, such as could happen when you are located in a valley and/or where the signal you get may come from more than one cell tower location, an Omnidirectional Broomstick type antenna would usually work more reliably.

 

 

 

AW_99
Level 7: Deputy Inspector

Re: Smart Antenna question for Telstra

Thanks "Lemon"

Always glad to help. Perchaps my original post doesn't point in details to a "budget" solution to improve reception strength inside the house. I have achieved increased reception in my situation by buying reasonably inexpensive mobile antenna i.e GME (usually mounted on the vehicle's bullbar of the 4x4 or ute) and universal cradle - my is a Smoothtalker. It works well enough to give me 2-3 bars of reception - it does improve data (3G & 4G) signal strength as well. If you are handyman it can be installed on the roof of your house and via 5 meter cable connected to the inductive cradle (no power connection required). The requirement in this case will be to install the antenna on the side of the house facing the closest mobile tower (cell) and adjust it for the best signal strength. My one is 6dB but depends of the terrain, house location and how close is the tower - 3dB or 0dB may work better.

Cheers

AW@99

wdtvandsound
Level 11: Detective

Re: Smart Antenna question for Telstra

The currently supplied Yagi Antennas are rated @ 16 dB for the reception for farthest towers, at times up to 35 km away and less reliably to 50 km which can cause signal drop outs and very low data quality. I picked up a tower 200 km away and it would only be of use part of the day, no go!!!

 

The latest 16dB Yagi work can work on 700-3000 MHz which will cover any tower frequency for the perceivable future covering 3G, 4G 1800 MHz & 4GX 700 MHz etc, so the Yagi will be able to get the latest Generation of signal weather it is 5G or 6G in to the future.

For the moment Voice calls will only be on 850Mhz 3G and data on both 3G and 4G as the 4GX rolls out.

To get the best out of the 4G & 4GX is to use two Yagi Antennas half a meter apart on the same pole by a fully trained Telstra Contractor with a Guarantee on the signal availability and 12 months on the equipment, Ph 1800307305 Opt3. TMSA Opt 4.

 

On one install on a winery outside Rutherglen Vic, a customer from an 1800 MHz cell got a 4G signal with 56.5 Mbps down load with a 16 Mbps upload. These are the speeds coming for customers in 4G reception areas that are rolling out now since and before Jan 2015.

 

The winery still had to get a  3G TMSA with a third Yagi seperately mounted on it's own pole to get mobile reception in their shed.

 

View installs: www.wdtvandsound.com.au

 

Regards

Telstra Subby

Info is not of Telstra

I'm not a Telstra employee.
I'm a Wireless 3G/4G LTE/4GX Antenna Sub-contractor and these are my opinions and not of Telstra.
wdtvandsound
Level 11: Detective

Re: Smart Antenna question for Telstra

You can ask for a "signal Survey" before going ahead.

 

Regards


@Ben_F wrote:

@jasnick wrote:

This is a very expensive option - I have read the data  on the website and would like to know what would happen if I bought one and it didn't work.  Have occasional one bar inside the house - horrendously expensive as it is, I might consider buying it if I could be guaranteed my money back if it didn't work.  I'd hate to buy it and find out the reception was no better than it was before and it seems to me the only way to test it would be to install it.


If the product didn't meet your intended needs (ie: to extend the coverage inside your home) and you made Telstra aware of these needs, i would assume you are entitled to request a refund or replacement under the Australian Consumer Law.

 

B.


 

I'm not a Telstra employee.
I'm a Wireless 3G/4G LTE/4GX Antenna Sub-contractor and these are my opinions and not of Telstra.
wdtvandsound
Level 11: Detective

Re: Smart Antenna question for Telstra

You can twist their arm and get a payment schedule on the Yagi Install.

 

 

Also with the TMSA 4G (Telstra Mobile Smart Antenna 4G (Signal Booster)) can be paid off at $40 p/m over two years without paying more than the outright purchase price.

 

When any "Install" becomes a survey only, all the gear goes back. Don't recall anyone being charged for anything when an install doesn’t go ahead.

Most all customers will be advised that if the signal is so low in their area that it is unlikely to work, or if there is too greater distance to a tower of over 35 to 50km max, otherwise you would have so such a variation of signal level all day, to the point of having some signal part of the day and then none, though the 3G voice signal most often remains long after data signal is long lost, otherwise they will try to do an install anyway if you press them.

Some signal is better than none, as 96dB is the cut off on a 16dB Yagi Antenna for the TMSA 4G/3G, if in doubt a survey request can be had. A good measure is 1 bar of signal just outside of your of your building. If the signal is much better than that then there is most likely to be metal or foil in your walls blocking signal, as brick, timber glass or anything else is fine.

 

There is now the new TMSA 4G and it does 3G signal boosting up to 30m with 5 Bars of signal up to 10-15m radius as well, out since the 2nd of June 2015 and it works extremely well at boosting any 4G signal for data  on 1800MHz LTE or 700MHz 4GX, as it won't do both at the same time even if 3G data is non-existent, a 2 bars equivalent of 4G will give many times faster signal then 3G ever did without having to leave your device on the charger half the day.

 

So if your device does 4G 1800MHz LTE and the TMSA 4G is set on 700MHz 4GX for your local tower, your Phone wireless 4G LTE Modem, iPad 4G LTE or Tablet will only find 3G.

The newer devices sold since mid-2014 would be fine.

So if your devices where made earlier as such as the first 4G LTE iPad you will need a tower putting out 1800MHz with the TMSA set to 1800MHz.

 

Devices that will do 700MHz 4GX e.g. Samsung Galaxy S5 and S6. Then there is the iPhone 6S.

For that matter anything and any brand bought new in 2015. Tablet, phone (premium) and iPhone or iPad. Check before you buy.

But not the iPhone 5S, as it does 4G 1800MHz LTE.

 

I'm not a Telstra employee.
I'm a Wireless 3G/4G LTE/4GX Antenna Sub-contractor and these are my opinions and not of Telstra.
rex2
Level 1: Cadet

Re: Smart Antenna question for Telstra

smart antenna keeps dropping out, perhaps two units are too close together, only getting number 1 or 0 on second unit

jasnick
Level 10: Junior Detective

Re: Smart Antenna question for Telstra

I think you need at least a 7. It may not be in the right place. Keep moving it around until you find where you can get a signal of at least 7.

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