Mobile phone aerial query

Nuclear Chicken

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Apr 9, 2010
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Norn Iron
Just changed from Vodafone to 3 for our two personal phones. However, in wife's RAV4, the 'tax disk' holder type aerial that I had fitted and was running very nicely with Vodafone, doesn't seem too emanoured with 3; i.e. little or no reception when reception is clearly available on the phone itself. Now I know that 3 is a fully 3G network and am wondering is it that aerial sensitive and should I consider changing it to a little 'T-bar' type instead?

Phone kit is a Nokia 616 that fully uses the full remote SIM access facility, i.e. takes over full phone function including aerial. (My crappy Parrot kit just accesses the names and numbers and uses the phone aerial and and as such, the aerial isn't an issue).

Any helps/ tips/ advice appreciated.
 

Crispin

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Feb 24, 2010
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It might be that the antenna is not dual / tri / quad band.
Seeing as 3 is a 3G only network, it might be that they are solely on the 3G frequency and vodafone used other bands as well. If your antenna is not tuned for the higher frequency, it would be worse off on 3.

Guess solution would be to buy another antenna?

I may be talking rubbish though ;)

UK CELLULAR FREQUENCY RANGES


GSM 900 Frequency Range:

Mobile transmit (BTx) 880 - 915 MHz
Base transmit (MTx) 925 - 960 MHz


GSM 1800 Frequency Range:

Mobile transmit (BTx) 1710 - 1785 MHz
Base transmit (MTx) 1805 - 1880 MHz


Third-Generation (3G) Frequency Range:

Base transmit (BTx) 2110 - 2170 MHz
Mobile transmit (MTx) 1920 - 1980 MHz
Compliments: http://www.ofcom.org.uk/static/archive/ ... arinfo.htm
 

Nuclear Chicken

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Apr 9, 2010
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Crispin, what you are saying is pretty much as I suspect, and I suspect you are right. The existing antennae is dual band I know that OK, but may not be suitable for the 3G business. For the sake of £10 or so, I'll give a t-bar type a shot after I speak to an installer, if I can.
 

Andy Harvey

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Mar 6, 2010
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Yep Dual band will only work for the GSM 900/1800 bands rather than the 3G (UMTS) band. You will need a tri band antenna to make it work.

On my car kit I just did away with the external antenna completely. Don't ever get any issues with signal strength in the car without it. However on the Nokia kit you can't just do without it so a new antenna or a new car kit is the way to go. I like my THB Bury car kit as it has interchangeable cradles that you can swap when you swap the phone or just fit the Bluetooth cradle.
 
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Jon Wildsmith

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Garage
Andy Harvey said:
I like my THB Bury car kit as it has interchangeable cradles that you can swap when you swap the phone or just fit the Bluetooth cradle.
Good piece of kit, I used one of those in my 100 till I replaced the head unit with one that has BT so now it's just more clutter in the garage :roll:
 

Andy Harvey

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Mar 6, 2010
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Cheltenham, UK
I have both the THB car kit and one on the head unit - the Pioneer HD1BT I fitted a little while ago. I need two car kits as I often have both my work phone and my personal phone in the car - did have one of the clip on the visor units for a while but it was never as good as a fixed car kit. Only thing I now need to do is to fit the cable adaptor onto the THB which allows it to work through the stereo speakers and the mute lead as I haven't bothered to do it since getting the 100 as I put the cable adaptor up in the loft when I had my 80 as there just wasn't enough room behind the stereo whereas the 100 has loads of room.
 

Nuclear Chicken

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Apr 9, 2010
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Yes, spoke to 3 last evening and checked the SIM was OK as the phone is almost pairing properly but not enough to get a connection to the network. They confirmed they operate on 2100MHz and the kit is 900/1800 so it looks like I'm stuffed on this one. Will a tri-band aerial even work Andy, do you think? I hope it's a solution this simple. :doh: :think:

Otherwise I am into a new kit..... :(

EDIT

Checked out Nokia website and the newest version of the 616 kit is still dual band by the look of it. How crap is that. :roll:
 

Andy Harvey

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Mar 6, 2010
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Cheltenham, UK
Yes you may find that if the kit is dual band it may not work even with another manuafacturers tri band aerial. I would go then for a different kit.
 

Nuclear Chicken

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Apr 9, 2010
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:thumbdown:

Looks like it Andy. The kit is 900/1800 so it looks like I'm stuffed. Have emailed Nokia for a laugh and so far they have answered 2 questions I haven't asked and haven't answered what I have asked. :roll: I'll perservere for the laugh. :whistle:

I still find it fairly staggering that Nokia havn't updated the 616 kit to tri- or even quad-band. It's been on sale for years too. And not cheap at some £200.
 

Andy Harvey

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Mar 6, 2010
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Cheltenham, UK
It seems that like Parrot, the newer kits are no longer using the same remote SIM takeover type of connection and just go for normal bluetooth heaset profile or A2DP where the car kit can view the stored numbers etc but doesn't have the same reliance on an aerial. Even the THB kit I have in bluetooth mode only connects to the phone but doesn't fully take it over. It only uses the external antenna if you are using one of the wired cradles.

The built in Bluetooth Phone control on my Stereo also only connects to the phone and if you want to use the built in phone book you have to transfer the nusiness cards over bluetooth, it cannot directly enquire from the handset.

I think tese days they are all about multi phone compatibility whereas the Nokia 616 was really designed only to work fully with the Nokia phones.

My 100 series came with a Nokia CK7-W car kit which is more universal and does use the mobile phone antenna but only if you use the optional wired connection rather than the bluetooth one (the CK7-W has both options to use bluetooth or Pop port connector). Again also not sure whether it is Tri-band as the phone I had with it that worked was on O2 GSM rather than UMTS (3G) and it worked fine. Am now on O2 3G and it works with the THB kit as well as the Pioneer Stereo but have never looked whether it is dropping back to 2.5G when in the car.
 

Nuclear Chicken

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Apr 9, 2010
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Well, I got a response of sorts from Nokia, suggest toungue in cheek to use a tri-band aerial. By chance, when Googling instead of working :whistle: , I happened upon an aerial manufacturer, spoke briefly to a tech bod and he was reasonably sure that as long as I used a UMTS tuned aerial, ideal one specific to 2100MHz, it should work OK. In other words the kit should be 'happy' enough as long as it sees a signal from the aerial. I'm not 100% convinced but it's worth a go.

You're right aboput the 616 kit. It is a very clever bit of kit but the fact that it takes over the phone, effectively, can be a bit of a downfall. My Parrot kit just takes contacts etc, bt A2DP as you say. The Nokia aerial thing is very useful in low signal aeras though as the metal box of the car is eliminated from affecting the signal.

Now, anyone know where I can get a good tri-band aerial on 'tnet? Nothing I can find is confirmed as tri-band for definite so I don't want to be wasting time....
 
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