Selecting the right WiFi Antenna
There are many different styles of WiFi antennas to choose from. Knowing which WiFi antenna to choose depends on your wireless network application.
Main WiFi Antenna Types
A directional antenna, as the name implies, focuses the wireless signal in a specific direction resulting in a limited coverage area. An analogy for the radiation pattern would be how a vehicle head light illuminates the road. High gain directional antennas can transmit and receive wireless signals for several miles given clear line of sight and sufficient transmit power. Applications for directional antennas include point to point wireless links connecting buildings, a back-haul data link connecting cell towers together and point to multi-point wireless links where multiple remote clients with directional antennas communicate with a single central tower with an Omni directional antenna.
Typical Directional Antenna Radiation Pattern (HG2424EG-NF)
In the example above building A and building B are set up for a directional, point to point network using Yagi antennas.
In this example both remote sites A and B have directional Wi-Fi connectivity to the base station fitted with an Omni directional antenna. This is an example of a point to multi-point set up.
Types of Directional Antennas
Examples of directional antennas include Yagi, Parabolic Grid, Patch, and Panel antenna styles.
| Yagi Antenna || Parabolic Grid Antenna |
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| Panel Antenna || Patch Antenna |
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Omni directional antennas provide a 360° donut shaped radiation pattern to provide the widest possible signal coverage in indoor and outdoor wireless applications. An analogy for the radiation pattern would be how an un-shaded incandescent light bulb illuminates a room. A high gain Omni’s vertical radiation pattern will exhibit a flattened donut shape as shown below for the HG24215U-PRO. The typical application for Omni directional antennas include indoor office spaces, retail stores, warehouses, small office or home networks, outdoor cafés, campgrounds, RV parks and marinas.
Typical Omni directional Antenna Radiation Pattern (HG2415U-PRO)
The example above depicts an outdoor café that offers WiFi access to its customers. You can see the centrally located Omni antenna provides wireless signal to various laptops, tablets, and smart phones in the coverage area.
Types of Omni directional antennas
Examples of Omni directional antennas include the common "Rubber Duck" found on many WiFi access points and routers as well as the complicated antenna arrays used on cellular towers.
| Outdoor Omni Antenna || Rubber Duck Antenna || Antenna Array |
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L-com stocks thousands of WiFi antennas for just about every wireless application. We also offer custom WiFi antenna solutions to meet your specific design requirements.