WI-FI Recommendations in Marina San Miguel

Although we at Indotica have tried to cover the whole Marina with 4 high gain antennas, the marine environment tends to increase Wi-Fi problems and create other problems of its own:

  • Boat hulls and sailboat masts can block radio signals, reducing range.
  • Movement of other boats can cause interruptions of Wi-Fi connections.
  • Location of a Wi-Fi antenna in a cabin below deck can further reduce range.
  • It may be difficult to get close enough to the Wi-Fi access point for sufficient signal, especially when anchored.
  • Boat movement can result in aiming problems with highly directional antennas (even when tied up).
  • Moisture in the marine environment can result in electronic failures.

This is an example of the amount of obstacles the Wi-Fi signal might encounter trying to reach the Access Point, marked with a yellow X.

Improving Wi-Fi

 

Higher Power

While it may seem that higher power Wi-Fi might help to improve your range, that’s not necessarily true, since higher power only helps on transmit, not receive. Also, unnecessarily high transmit power will tend to increase your interference with other Wi-Fi users, making you a bad neighbor.

Better Antenna

Usually the best way to improve range is to use a better antenna, which helps both transmit and receive.

Better antennas work by being directional:

  • concentrating radio energy/sensitivity to/from the desired direction instead of wasting it in pointless directions, and
  • reducing interference from other radio sources not in the desired direction (path).

However, a highly directional antenna can be problematic on a boat, since it must be kept aimed accurately at the remote end of the connection, which can be difficult on a boat floating in the water (even when tied up). The width (angle) of the directional pattern (both vertically and horizontally) can be used to see how accurately the antenna must be aimed.

We recommend an antenas as the Ubiquiti NanoStation LocoM2, which although direcctional, is coverage area is wide enough which will help to compenstate the movment of the boat. It is also weatherproof, which suits its usage in a marine environment.

If you are interested, please Contact Us, we can provide a quote in installing and configuring an antenna on your boat.

Antenna Location

Higher antenna locations tend to have less interference from obstructions (e.g., biminis, dodgers, booms, and other very close proximity boats) than lower locations since there are more obstructions on a boat closer to deck level, so in general, it’s a good idea to locate the antenna as high as is practical. WiFi is line of sight, therefore height is important to get clear of nearby obstacles and for maximum range. VHF antennas are mounted at masthead for the same reasons.

In Marina San Miguel, there are four locations of high gain Antennas. The map shows the 4 antennas, their SSIDs and the approximate area of coverage. This coverage, as stated before, may depend on the obstacles between your antenna the the base antenna.