Selecting The Right WiFi Antenna
Posted: Feb 17, 2014
Antennas play an important role in communication systems, and often customers are confused about which one to select for their WiFi network. This write-up briefly discusses the two types of WiFi Antennas and the factors that should be taken into account to choose the right one for a particular application.
Types Of WiFi Antennas
WiFi Antennas have been classified into two broad categories.
Omni Directional Antennas
An Omni Directional Antenna is suitable for both indoor and outdoor applications and provides maximum coverage with its 360-degree donut shaped radiation pattern. Omni Directional Antennas have been further classified into Rubber Duck Antennas (used at access points), Routers (used in outdoor applications) and Antenna arrays (found in cellular towers).
As the name implies, Directional Antennas send wireless signals in a specific direction. As a result coverage area is limited. Directional Antennas are classified as Yagi Antenna, Grid Antenna, Panel Antenna and Patch Antenna.
Choosing WiFi Antenna For An Application
- When connecting one building to another, establishing a point to point wireless link by means of directional antenna is the right option. The antennas should be in a line and must point at each other.
- When adding WiFi in your office building, an Omni Directional Antenna is the right choice. Ceiling mounted antenna will provide the right degree of horizontal and vertical coverage required for the connectivity of the devices such as laptops, smart phones, tablets, printers, etc.
- For WiFi in a campus environment, you will require multiple Omni Directional Antennas. One of the antennas will be fixed on to the central building establishing a point to multipoint network by connecting other buildings in the campus.
- In an outdoor café, again you will require an Omni Directional Antenna. It must be located in the center of the coverage area to provide smooth connectivity to the customers’ devices. Antenna with too high gain will provide better signals to devices beyond the café area in comparison to those within the café. So, be mindful of that particular feature of the antenna.
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AvaLAN Wireless is a manufacturer of Wireless Networking Products.