Mag mount antennas?

Archived from groups: alt.cellular.verizon (More info?)

Can anyone tell me what has been their experience using a mag mount antenna
on their car? I have the LG VX4500 and we all know they are poor RF
performers. I was thinking of getting a mag mount with the adaptor to
attach it to my phone if indeed it does help. Theoretically it should work
better but in real life does it really help out? Any comments or
recommendations as to what and where I can get a decent antenna? Thanks!

Bob
15 answers Last reply
More about mount antennas
  1. Archived from groups: alt.cellular.verizon (More info?)

    "Bob" <rfa5@optonline.net> wrote in message
    news:qF%Yc.29470$Es2.11927094@news4.srv.hcvlny.cv.net...
    > Can anyone tell me what has been their experience using a mag mount
    antenna
    > on their car? I have the LG VX4500 and we all know they are poor RF
    > performers. I was thinking of getting a mag mount with the adaptor to
    > attach it to my phone if indeed it does help. Theoretically it should work
    > better but in real life does it really help out? Any comments or
    > recommendations as to what and where I can get a decent antenna? Thanks!
    >
    > Bob
    >
    >

    Yes it seems to help in many/most situations, but I would like to make a
    suggestion. On the back of my phone bag/clip (actually on the part that
    clips on my belt) I stuck on one of those self adhesive velcro strips (the
    fuzzy side), and in the car (and at home and in the office), I put a self
    stick square on the dash (the "hook" side), along with a bunch of other
    strips at various convenient places (on the wall near my desk, on the lamp
    by my TV, on the microwave next to where I keep the charger plugged in etc).
    Keeps it in one place so I can find it, and when in the car, keeps it in one
    place so I can plug the antenna in.

    In another post, you had asked about antennas/pigtail plugs etc, see a whole
    variety at www.wilsoncellular.com, They sell a whole bunch of both the
    Wilson cellular and the Wilson trucker antennas (among a bunch of others),
    and if you don't like mail-order, you can see/get/order them at most truck
    stops.

    Another suggestion, I have a Jabra freespeak wireless headset on mine, and
    trained it to use voice control, so essentially it is hands free also. (not
    necessary, but I prefer wireless to wired, or fumbling with a cellphone
    while driving).
  2. Archived from groups: alt.cellular.verizon (More info?)

    "Bob" <rfa5@optonline.net> wrote in message
    news:qF%Yc.29470$Es2.11927094@news4.srv.hcvlny.cv.net...
    > Can anyone tell me what has been their experience using a mag mount
    antenna
    > on their car? I have the LG VX4500 and we all know they are poor RF
    > performers. I was thinking of getting a mag mount with the adaptor to
    > attach it to my phone if indeed it does help. Theoretically it should work
    > better but in real life does it really help out? Any comments or
    > recommendations as to what and where I can get a decent antenna? Thanks!
    >
    > Bob
    >
    How do we all know that they are poor RF performers?

    I have 3 on my plan and use one heavily. In my experience the phone performs
    as good as or better than other phones I have had or have used.

    An external antenna will help any phone if you are in a marginal area.
  3. Archived from groups: alt.cellular.verizon (More info?)

    Another question...what antenna connector do I need that fits into my LG
    VX4500? Thanks again.

    Bob
  4. Archived from groups: alt.cellular.verizon (More info?)

    Bob,

    I don't understand why you and others say the LG VX4500 phone is a poor RF
    performer. I have had cellular from the very beginning (Chicago, early
    1970s). Because of my business travels I use my phone all over the entire
    United States and over the years have had dozens of phones but I personally
    think the 4500 is one of the best phones that I have ever had. Of course I
    do not have technical data on the phone, but in my opinion it is great. I
    have never lost a call, have great sound, great reception, etc. Am I just
    lucky.

    I got the Motorola V710 several weeks ago. Again a great phone, but I do
    not think that it was my favorite so I returned it and went back to the
    LGVX4500.

    Tomorrow, I am going to go out and get a new Treo 600 and if it works for
    me, I will give this phone to one of my employees and use the Treo. If the
    Treo is too big or for some other reason, I do not like the Treo, I will go
    back to the 4500.

    Just my opinion.

    Bruce D. Brown

    I am going out tomorrow and getting a Treo 600
    "Bob" <rfa5@optonline.net> wrote in message
    news:qF%Yc.29470$Es2.11927094@news4.srv.hcvlny.cv.net...
    > Can anyone tell me what has been their experience using a mag mount
    > antenna
    > on their car? I have the LG VX4500 and we all know they are poor RF
    > performers. I was thinking of getting a mag mount with the adaptor to
    > attach it to my phone if indeed it does help. Theoretically it should work
    > better but in real life does it really help out? Any comments or
    > recommendations as to what and where I can get a decent antenna? Thanks!
    >
    > Bob
    >
    >
  5. Archived from groups: alt.cellular.verizon (More info?)

    "Bruce D. Brown" <bdbrown@socal.rr.com> wrote in message
    news:FW0Zc.24052$Qa4.154@twister.socal.rr.com...
    > Bob,
    >
    > I don't understand why you and others say the LG VX4500 phone is a poor RF
    > performer. I have had cellular from the very beginning (Chicago, early
    > 1970s). Because of my business travels I use my phone all over the entire
    > United States and over the years have had dozens of phones but I
    personally
    > think the 4500 is one of the best phones that I have ever had. Of course
    I
    > do not have technical data on the phone, but in my opinion it is great. I
    > have never lost a call, have great sound, great reception, etc. Am I just
    > lucky.

    No, I also get good RF performance and sound quality with the vx4500. I
    have 3 on my plan and use mine heavily. I also have used cellular "forever"
    and other communications systems before that.


    > I got the Motorola V710 several weeks ago. Again a great phone, but I do
    > not think that it was my favorite so I returned it and went back to the
    > LGVX4500.
    >
    > Tomorrow, I am going to go out and get a new Treo 600 and if it works for
    > me, I will give this phone to one of my employees and use the Treo. If
    the
    > Treo is too big or for some other reason, I do not like the Treo, I will
    go
    > back to the 4500.
    >
    > Just my opinion.
    >
    > Bruce D. Brown
    >
    > I am going out tomorrow and getting a Treo 600
    > "Bob" <rfa5@optonline.net> wrote in message
    > news:qF%Yc.29470$Es2.11927094@news4.srv.hcvlny.cv.net...
    > > Can anyone tell me what has been their experience using a mag mount
    > > antenna
    > > on their car? I have the LG VX4500 and we all know they are poor RF
    > > performers. I was thinking of getting a mag mount with the adaptor to
    > > attach it to my phone if indeed it does help. Theoretically it should
    work
    > > better but in real life does it really help out? Any comments or
    > > recommendations as to what and where I can get a decent antenna?
    Thanks!
    > >
    > > Bob
    > >
    > >
    >
    >
  6. Archived from groups: alt.cellular.verizon (More info?)

    "Bob" <rfa5@optonline.net> wrote in message news:<qF%Yc.29470$Es2.11927094@news4.srv.hcvlny.cv.net>...
    > Can anyone tell me what has been their experience using a mag mount antenna
    > on their car? I have the LG VX4500 and we all know they are poor RF
    > performers. I was thinking of getting a mag mount with the adaptor to
    > attach it to my phone if indeed it does help. Theoretically it should work
    > better but in real life does it really help out? Any comments or
    > recommendations as to what and where I can get a decent antenna? Thanks!
    >
    > Bob

    Short answer.
    Don't expect miracles from a magmount, just a consistantly higher
    signal.
    Check the Wilson site or Canyonriver for the correct adapter cable. I
    recommend a dual charger adapter cable.
    All those wires can be a hassle to deal with. The charger type adapter
    disconnects your phones antenna COMPLETELY, so remember that using
    just the charger, without the magmount to make calls, will provide
    very poor signal levels. I works very good when charging and talking
    with the antenna hooked up though, especially in analog areas, where
    batteries drain rapidly.

    Watch for hyped up "test" measurements and look for substance and
    quality materials. The design was worked out long ago and most have
    very similar levels of performance.


    After taking some RX measurement using the testmode screen, which I'm
    sure does not tell the whole story about signal performance, nor is it
    the most accurate test, it seems .... the signal was about the same
    strength if I stood outside my car with the phone's (excellent)stock
    antenna OR hooked up to either of a couple of standard 12 inch long,
    spring type, mag mount antennas.
    Ideally I should record both RX and TX values while making calls.

    My audiovox 9500 has a very good, stock 1/2 wave antenna, 6" long
    antenna.
    Inside the car there was a big difference using the mag mount. The car
    body blocks a lot of signal.
    Used the RX measurement units INSIDE the car... -83-84db stock antenna
    removed entirely -73-75 stock antenna, down position
    -60-61 Wilson (dual band) mag mount
    -57-58 Nynex Single Band

    -58db Outside the car, stock antenna only

    It's important to remember, hooking up combo CLA/ external antenna
    adapter cable, causes the phones own antenna to be completely
    disconnected (or it should).
    So, the external antenna has to make up for the loss of the stock
    antenna gain and then provide any potential signal improvement, in
    addition.
    A phone with a less than ideal (stub/patch designed for looks?) stock
    antenna, would likely benefit the most from a magmount.

    Note: the Nokia 3589i (internal patch antenna) is one of the BEST
    performing phones, but since there is no hardwired external antenna
    adapter, it's hard to compare with any other antenna hookup. Either
    the phone's receiver is incredible, to make up for the patch or the
    patch antenna design is some kind of breakthrough. I'd like to think
    reception with another antenna could be MUCH better and when someone
    finally adds a little external antenna port to the 3589i, they will
    know for sure!

    Also, there are even more loses all along the signal path, when using
    an external antenna. The adapter cable, each connection and adapter
    barrels. Any long length of cable can have a high loss, unless the
    appropriate quality for the distance, shielded cable is used.

    *The Wilson uses longer and thinner cable 9.5 feet of RG 174u. Fits
    better through a closed door but has a fairly high loss. It's also a
    dual band.
    The Nynex has 6.5 feet of Belden RG58a/u
    The cable type used can make a difference, since better made, thicker
    cable loses less signal.

    In real world use as well, the magmount seems to provide only a little
    improvement over the stock antenna, if compared with the phone held
    outside the car, in the same location. The magmount removes any
    obstructions caused by the car body or tinted windows, or one's own
    head, inside the car.
    It would also seem, a magmount, for a fixed location, would remove the
    obstructions caused by the walls or house, but doesn't boost the
    signal a great deal, unlike a Yagi. There's also some gain getting any
    type of antenna up higher. A magmount mounted on a pole, could be the
    alternative to making calls from the rooftop.

    There's longer, higher gain, magmount antennas. I have not used one,
    but they get extra gain by concentrating the antenna signal more
    towards the horizon. Since I travel in the mountains and towers are
    usually atop hills, high gain magmounts may actually reduce the
    signal "seen" by the phone, and could miss the towers high up. If one
    were out on plains or wide open country, the high gain designs may be
    more useful.
    Yagi antennas, although not useful for a car, since they require
    aiming at one tower, really do boost the signal significantly, over
    the stock antenna.

    I bought a 12" Wilson Mag Mount for $39. There's a piece of vinyl tape
    on the base covering magnet. The tape is starting to scrap/peel off
    with just a little use:(
    The ball on the end fell off:(
    It performs about equal to an old Nynex mag mount antenna I own.
    Appears to be made cheaper, with a big marketing hype. Good
    warranty/CS. Wilson replaced the anntenna with another one. The ball
    was replaced by a plastic nub. The other styles of Wilson antennas may
    be better?

    Wilson Electronics, Inc. - Wilson Magnet Mount Cellular Antenna

    http://www.cellularantenna.com/antennas/wcmagnet.htm

    Check out this antenna forum for more info Cell Antenna Corporation
    Q&A Forum

    http://www.cellantenna.com/.cgi-bin/ultimatebb.cgi

    Index - How to Improve Cellular, Nextel and PCS GSM Reception

    http://www.criterioncellular.com/tutorials/index.html

    Criterioncelluar has been a good resource. They are less hype and more
    practical info. Local to (SF) and sell mostly pro-grade and American
    made antennas/parts.
    They can also make up any length and type of cable/termination and are
    very knowledgable.
    Bought an Antennex Yagi and parts from them and got good help quality
    products*.

    At least there are good pictures, showing how to identify the various
    types of connectors used to connect handsets, cables, adapters and
    antennas. With so many connector types, it can be confusing.

    Haven't used their 3 watt booster, but I'm curious if anyone has a
    review or compared it to the popular (BDA) Cellantenna sells? It's FCC
    compliant, which is important. Yet another, 3 watt booster sold by
    Wilson, does not indicate an FCC approved design?

    The difference between quality antennas/parts and cheaper imported
    stuff, often seems like OEM compared to aftermarket accessories. Both
    units will work, but the cheaper parts do not hold up as well and
    overseas construction and materials are often inferior.

    *Despite getting an American made, welded and tested Yagi antenna, the
    last element of 6, on the end, was mounted a couple of degrees off
    perpendicular. Antennex replaced it for free, including shipping and
    said the holes had been drilled slightly crooked, before welding.
    It still worked fine, but makes one wonder about the state of American
    manufacturing.
    After all, the reason I paid $120 for a welded, 6 element Yagi,
    instead of riveted import, was that each Antennex antenna is claimed
    to be tested and tuned to specs. I thought welds would hold up better
    as well under rough use, like getting carried in a car trunk.

    -
    David
  7. Archived from groups: alt.cellular.verizon (More info?)

    "Dan Albrich" <junkmail@shaney.uoregon.edui> wrote in message news:<VrKdnawZlN5sIancRVn-ug@comcast.com>...
    > > Can anyone tell me what has been their experience using a mag mount
    > > antenna
    > > on their car?
    >
    > Yes, and it makes a significant difference. From usenet reports, but also
    > from personal experience an antenna will allow you to make and receive calls
    > in an area where weak signal is detected by your phone, but not usable. It
    > also helps you hold calls as you drive through a weak section that would
    > otherwise cause a call to drop.
    > I have seen it allow me to place calls in places where my phone doesn't even
    > detect a signal without the antenna but this is rare. So the conventional
    > wisdom is that it helps weak areas, but doesn't allow you to use the phone
    > in a place with no detectable signal (without antenna) in most cases.
    >
    > > I have the LG VX4500 and we all know they are poor RF
    > > performers.
    >
    > This is a tough issue because nobody has access and time to really use a
    > wide variety of phones, and compare them side-by-side.

    I take several phones out to a favorite hiking trailhead, where calls
    calls will barley connect, if at all, on ATT TDMA/Analog, VZW D/A and
    Sprint.

    Bolinger Canyon Road, before park road gate, dirt parking lot on left,
    where a car would park, near garbage can.

    N 37°48.694'
    W122°02.608' (WGS-84)

    Then make bunch of test calls on each. 611 is used for unactivated
    handsets and as an alternative outgoing number from active phones
    The further up the hill from the valley floor required to walk before
    a call can be connected show, the relative fringe area call
    performance or (power to reach back to the tower?).
    The Startacs constitently needed to come further up the hill to
    connect a D/A call.
    If a phone can call out from the valley floor parking lot, like the
    Nokia 3585i, it's given an excellent rating. Moving around once a
    fringe call is connected, seems to show how well each phone can hold a
    call.
    Even if a call is connected with the Motv60i, it won't hold a call
    except for a keeping the phone carefully held in certain direction,
    unlike the VX 9500 or Nokia 3585i where I could move all over.
    Each phone gets checked in analog, digital and PCS. The external
    magmount antenna didn't seem to make much difference on the Startac or
    Audiovox 9500 and I'm trying to figure out why? Only had adapter
    cables for these phones.
    Cell shrinkage during peak times, changed results drastically. During
    some times of day, no calls would connect from the parking lot, but it
    was consistant across phones.

    If you go into the
    > debug menu (Menu-0) and view the debug screens, you can find the EC/IO
    > measured in db. Comparing this to another Verizon phone in the same spot
    > (EC/IO) should give you a decent estimation of RF capabilities of the
    > phones. The "bars" indicator, as we know, varies by phone and cannot be
    > used for comparison.
    >

    I thought the EC/IO measured the relative interference levels "Signal
    to Noise ratio" created by all the other CDMA users. How does is this
    value used to rate one phones RF to another?

    > For
    > example, the 8260 on AT&T was a poor performer relative to other old
    > TDMA/anlog handsets including even Nokias 6160 which was a real work-horse
    > of a phone.
    >
    > Granted, I've only owned a handful of 1x phones, but in my limited
    > experience they seem to generally perform better RF-wise than any of the 2G
    > phones (or at least equal to the best of the 2G handsets). This was an
    > unexpected but welcome surprise when I upgraded. I suspect you can take
    > most any 1x phone and have it perform as well as even the best 2G phones.
    > Within 1x phones, there are differences still. Anyway, haven't seen a 1x
    > capable phone with really poor RF yet. (incidentally I see this same
    > phenomenon withboth 1x and GSM phones vs. "2G" TDMA/CDMA under the same
    > conditions. It seems the phones that use an economy of bandwidth for calls
    > generally, may also work better in bandwidth constrained environments --
    >

    Does 2G mean second generation, pre 1x? Like the Motorola Startac 7868
    Dual band/dual mode, for example.
    Verizon first "trimode" got this reputation for having excellent RF
    performance or "the best phone made". I find most of the newer 1x
    handsets to have superior digital reception. My AVX 9500 still beats
    it in analog. Now, voice quality may still be the best. Compression
    didn't advance VQ much.

    Is the best RF TDMA handset still the 6160? I have to buy a prepaid
    for a friend. What is a Nokia GSM example?

    >
    > One last thing with regard to the antenna- most of the phones have this
    > unusual looking "O" ring that has a pin in the center. In some cases the O
    > gets progressively smaller so as to give you a cup or cone appearance. My
    > experience with these connectors has generally been bad.

    I'm using adapter cables that plug into the bottom of the phone jack.
    Despite how delicate they look, those ports hold up very well. A
    couple of cables have failed on very old phones.

    >
    > PS: I started out with Magmount, then closed my window on the cable coming
    > into the car (not professionally installed). This ruined the molding around
    > one of my windows and it had to be replaced. I know have a glass mount kit
    > which has worked really well for me,

    Inductive antennas must work, or they couldn't get a signal to pass
    through the glass. Seems like there must be some loss" Silly, but I
    just don't trust antennas which don't keep the wires connected
    (hardwiring). Got ripped of on the very first (reradiating dipole)
    window mount antenna.

    -
    Thanks,
    David
  8. Archived from groups: alt.cellular.verizon (More info?)

    "George" <george@nospam.invalid> wrote in
    news:n_ydnT6fRcZkLKncRVn-sA@adelphia.com:

    >>
    > How do we all know that they are poor RF performers?
    >

    I don't think it's any of the phones, now that I have dumped Verizon's
    Cellular One system in Charleston, SC, for Alltel's system. I'm using the
    same defective Motorola V60i that was to blame for all of Verizon's signal
    problems as before. But, now on Alltel, the defective V60i blamed for
    everything makes clear, completed calls way down past -97 dBm on page 1 of
    the test page display.

    From this observation over the couple of weeks since I flew the coup, I
    think it's more related to what system the phone is talking to, than it is
    to blame the phones, themselves. Alltel's system, here at least, will make
    a great call when there's only 1 bar of signal. Simply amazing.

    Having never switched systems, before since Cellular One put up the first
    two towers, I had no reference to see this effect. All I knew was when my
    VZW said "NO SERVICE" inside WalMart, the Alltel customers were talking on
    theirs.....??
  9. Archived from groups: alt.cellular.verizon (More info?)

    Larry W4CSC wrote:
    >
    > I don't think it's any of the phones, now that I have dumped Verizon's
    > Cellular One system in Charleston, SC, for Alltel's system. I'm
    > using the same defective Motorola V60i that was to blame for all of
    > Verizon's signal problems as before. But, now on Alltel, the
    > defective V60i blamed for everything makes clear, completed calls way
    > down past -97 dBm on page 1 of the test page display.
    >
    > From this observation over the couple of weeks since I flew the coup,
    > I think it's more related to what system the phone is talking to,
    > than it is to blame the phones, themselves. Alltel's system, here at
    > least, will make a great call when there's only 1 bar of signal.
    > Simply amazing.

    This is simply amazing. What is more amazing is that it is coming
    from you Larry.

    > But, now on Alltel, the
    > defective V60i blamed for everything makes clear, completed calls way
    > down past -97 dBm on page 1 of the test page display.

    > Alltel's system, here at least, will make a great call when there's
    > only 1 bar of signal.

    What you are implying is that VZW's system *won't* make a call
    at the same signal strenght??? Same radio interface technology???
    C'mon Larry. You have your issues, but you have never resorted
    to voodoo explanations in the context of radio...

    -Quick
  10. Archived from groups: alt.cellular.verizon (More info?)

    In article <qF%Yc.29470$Es2.11927094@news4.srv.hcvlny.cv.net>, rfa5
    @optonline.net says...
    > Can anyone tell me what has been their experience using a mag mount antenna
    > on their car? I have the LG VX4500 and we all know they are poor RF
    > performers. I was thinking of getting a mag mount with the adaptor to
    > attach it to my phone if indeed it does help. Theoretically it should work
    > better but in real life does it really help out? Any comments or
    > recommendations as to what and where I can get a decent antenna? Thanks!
    >
    > Bob
    >
    >
    >
    I haven't tried it in a car. But I can tell you that I now know of
    three people (myself and two people to whom I gave gifts), who found the
    magnamount to make enough of a difference so that their phone calls are
    received, don't break up, and don't drop, inside buildings or particular
    rooms where this wasn't possible. All three are LG 4400s.\

    I've rarely been so pleased with the performance of something so small
    and compact and well made.

    Heed the caveat about attaching it to metal such as a file cabinet. Not
    having a large metal object where I needed the antenna the most, and
    wanting to move around with it, I placed it on a large ball jar lid so
    that it is placed on a larger piece of metal. Another person placed it
    on a file cabinet and the third find that just walking around with it
    boots signal adequately,

    Louise
  11. Archived from groups: alt.cellular.verizon (More info?)

    > The external
    > magmount antenna didn't seem to make much difference on the Startac or
    > Audiovox 9500 and I'm trying to figure out why?

    Could be Pilot pollution or distance from tower.. I'd be curious if your
    results improved dramatically by forcing analog prior to testing (assuming
    you haven't done that). I often find myself requiring analog when hiking in
    the mountains where no digital phone will work. Same phenomenon on the
    north rim of the grand canyon. Your phone can see digital service on the
    south rim but cannot use it (too far away for the timing to work). Force
    analog, and calls can go through.

    > I thought the EC/IO measured the relative interference levels "Signal
    > to Noise ratio" created by all the other CDMA users. How does is this
    > value used to rate one phones RF to another?

    EC/IO is a measure the usable signal strength perceived by the phone.
    It accounts for a rising noise floor as you have more users.

    > Does 2G mean second generation, pre 1x?
    I meant to say pre 1x.

    > Is the best RF TDMA handset still the 6160?

    --> oh, didn't mean to imply 6160 is the best, but it's very good.
    The star tacs are very good too. I never used the panasonic and some of the
    others
    so I couldn't say. If you want a solid TDMA phone that is easy to use, with
    cheaply available accessories (etc.) then I would definitely recommend the
    6160.
    I have always preferred the menu interface on the Nokias to the Star Tacs
    but
    that's just a personal preference.

    > What is a Nokia GSM example?
    Not sure what you mean (example of what?). I just bought an unlocked
    Cingular 6340i so I could have a phone with the potential to use
    GSM/TDMA 850/1900 and analog. I activated it with a GoPhone SIM
    which means I can only use the GSM side, save 911 calls.

    This phone includes the standard Nokia antenna adapter and works with
    my other Nokia accessories so it's a nice basic phone. Looks like the
    6360 which was an excellent RF perfomer from the TDMA days. Anyway,
    this gets me 850 and 1900 mhz GSM with external antenna capability.

    > Inductive antennas must work, or they couldn't get a signal to pass
    > through the glass. Seems like there must be some loss" Silly, but I
    > just don't trust antennas which don't keep the wires connected
    > (hardwiring). Got ripped of on the very first (reradiating dipole)
    > window mount antenna.

    I have a magmount and glass mount antenna (separate). The magmount does
    of course out-perform the glass mount, but both a good improvment for
    my needs. I don't find the degredation of the glass mount to be problematic
    for my applications.

    > Thanks,
    > David

    --> Yes, nice visiting via usenet David. Hope you are having a nice summer,

    -Dan

    --
    Eugene, Oregon -- Pacific Northwest
    http://cell.uoregon.edu
  12. Archived from groups: alt.cellular.verizon (More info?)

    "Dan Albrich" <junkmail@shaney.uoregon.edui> wrote in message news:<MrqdnVd0_9KrEqvcRVn-hg@comcast.com>...

    "Could be Pilot pollution or distance from tower.."
    "I'd be curious if your results improved dramatically by forcing
    analog prior to testing (assuming you haven't done that). I often
    find myself requiring analog when hiking in the mountains where no
    digital phone will work. Same phenomenon on the north rim of the
    grand canyon. Your phone can see digital service on the south rim but
    cannot use it (too far away for the timing to work). Force analog,
    and calls can go through."

    I encounter the "4 bars digital display, no connection limitation",
    often. Especially on hill tops, where the power to send a signal, back
    to the tower IN DIGITAL mode, just isn't there.
    Using Analog, will still connect, from the same location, much of the
    time.

    That's another reason to keep analog in rural hilly areas. Just more
    power,to cover distance.
    I'm probably oversimplifying things.
    I suspect there are a whole bunch of variables, including how the
    tower is aimed, how many towers are getting picked up and interactions
    with the terrain and flora.

    I believe that digital signals may be aimed downward to roads and
    valleys. Analog seems to be "broadcast" all over. The D/A relationship
    behaves that way in many locations, though sometimes the opposite is
    true. Often climbing up a hill, is the only way to get a digital
    signal.

    "--> oh, didn't mean to imply 6160 is the best, but it's very good.
    The star tacs are very good too. .
    If you want a solid TDMA phone that is easy to use, with cheaply
    available accessories (etc.) then I would definitely recommend the
    6160."

    I have several CallPlus Nokias fired up already, just wanted to make
    sure I wasn't stuck in a rut.


    "Not sure what you mean (example of what?). I just bought an unlocked
    Cingular 6340i so I could have a phone with the potential to use
    GSM/TDMA 850/1900 and analog. I activated it with a GoPhone SIM which
    means I can only use the GSM side, save 911 calls.
    This phone includes the standard Nokia antenna adapter and works with
    my other Nokia accessories so it's a nice basic phone. Looks like the
    6360 which was an excellent RF performer from the TDMA days. Anyway,
    this gets me 850 and 1900 mhz GSM with external antenna capability."

    Pinch me!
    I feel the urge for a new toy coming on;) A GSM prepay to test both
    850 and 1900 would be way cool.
    With ATT or Callplus prepaid, sounds like a significant step towards
    the ultimate prepaid/test phone. An external antenna port too!

    "GSM/TDMA 850/1900 and analog"

    Did I interpret the modes correctly?
    GSM 850 AND 1900 +
    TDMA 850 AND 1900
    AND Analog,
    All in one handset?

    Wow! Where's some more info on a prepay set up for an unlocked
    Cingular 6340i?
    (A CDMA/GSM/Analog version would be nice.)

    -
    Thanks,
    David
  13. Archived from groups: alt.cellular.verizon (More info?)

    > Did I interpret the modes correctly?
    > GSM 850 AND 1900 +
    > TDMA 850 AND 1900
    > AND Analog,
    > All in one handset?

    Yep. This is correct. The original 6340 GAIT phone lacked 850Mhz GSM, but
    the 6340i is a newer version to include GSM at 850.


    > Wow! Where's some more info on a prepay set up for an unlocked
    > Cingular 6340i?
    > (A CDMA/GSM/Analog version would be nice.)

    Nothing as cheap as ecallplus or free2go on the GSM side yet. I bit the
    bullet and paid $20 for a GoPhone SIM which is only good for 30 days unless
    I recharge. I have vacation coming this month, and plan to carry the AT&T
    phone with me to see where it works etc. I'll let it "die" after 30 days,
    then hope that I can still see signal without an activated phone. I got an
    unlocked phone in case I decide to use a T-Mobile prepaid SIM.

    One bad thing about GAIT so far : If you're in an area with no GSM, and your
    SIM is a GSM-only SIM (ala GoPhone) then your phone will yield an error
    when trying to select TDMA/analog. The problem I experience is that when
    GSM signal is available again, the phone doesn't automatically find it. I
    have to power-cycle the phone. I'm beginning to think it would have been
    better to buy a Sony Ericson T226 -- just a GSM-Only phone with 850 and 1900
    to avoid this issue.

    Anyway, no biggy either way. A GAIT phone, activated on a GAIT plan is a
    truly powerful thing, but a GAIT phone with a GSM-only SIM isn't ideal.

    -Dan

    --
    Eugene, Oregon -- Pacific Northwest
    http://cell.uoregon.edu


    >
    > -
    > Thanks,
    > David
  14. Archived from groups: alt.cellular.verizon (More info?)

    "Dan Albrich" <junkmail@shaney.uoregon.edui> wrote in message news:<qvqdneEm_sW01KTcRVn-gA@comcast.com>...
    > One bad thing about GAIT so far : If you're in an area with no GSM, and your
    > SIM is a GSM-only SIM (ala GoPhone) then your phone will yield an error
    > when trying to select TDMA/analog. The problem I experience is that when
    > GSM signal is available again, the phone doesn't automatically find it. I
    > have to power-cycle the phone. I'm beginning to think it would have been
    > better to buy a Sony Ericson T226 -- just a GSM-Only phone with 850 and 1900
    > to avoid this issue.
    >
    > Anyway, no biggy either way. A GAIT phone, activated on a GAIT plan is a
    > truly powerful thing, but a GAIT phone with a GSM-only SIM isn't ideal.
    >

    Oh, so you can't register the GSM with one carrier, "Go Phone" and the
    TDMA with another, like Ecallplus. And if you want TDMA/analog only
    you can't let the SIM die and then register the phone on ecallplus as
    a TDMA/analog?
    It's all a package activation? No prepaid multinetwork GSM/TDMA/AMPS

    So to get full multinetwork capability do you need a regular yearly
    ATT/Cingular contract plan? Is there a special GAIT plan?

    -
    David
  15. Archived from groups: alt.cellular.verizon (More info?)

    >
    > So to get full multinetwork capability do you need a regular yearly
    > ATT/Cingular contract plan? Is there a special GAIT plan?

    Yes. In GAITland, the SIM contains info needed for both GSM and TDMA
    which is actually very weird. I do not believe it would be possible to do
    two different GSM/TDMA plans.

    -Dan


    --
    Eugene, Oregon -- Pacific Northwest
    http://cell.uoregon.edu

    /AMPS
    =
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