[RFI] High Power Wi-Fi

Ford Peterson ford at cmgate.com
Fri Jan 21 23:04:24 EST 2005

Jim Brown asks:

>I just returned from a computer store where I saw a crop of "high 
> power" Wi-Fi routers and PCCard interfaces. The routers claimed 200 
> mW and has removable antennas (SMA's, I think). The PCCards were 
> labeled 100 mW.  
> Does anyone know what sort of power level the garden variety units 
> are running?  One of my friends looked at the book for his Apple 
> base station and it said 15dBm, which I would interpret as 32 mW. Is 
> this typical?  What do FCC Rules currently allow?  Are these newer 
> units the result of Rules change?
> Jim Brown K9YC


I recently purchased and installed a wireless hotspot here for the QTH.  Nifty stuff to say the least.  This is the Linksys WRT54GS dual antenna wireless router using 802.11G.  I find that the antenna is removable and purchased a no-doubt illegal 2.4GHz collinear mag mount.  Cute little bugger at only about 5" tall.  I unpluged the reverse TNC antenna and plugged in the collinear.  It's stuck to the flashing on the outside of the shack but the signal is perfectly usable up at the house and all over the house some 200' away.

The data sheet that came with the router is silent on power output.  But the on-line data sheet explains it all ftp://ftp.linksys.com/datasheet/wrt54gv2_ds.pdf

Power output is indicated at +18dBm.

There is a new standard called 802.11G+ or some such nonsense.  But it seems to me that it was only compressing the packets and provided a 5% or 10% increase in throughput but nothing related to power output.

If there has been an increase in the power limit, we can thank our lucky stars that the culprit is heading to the door at the FCC.  Powell is HISTORY!  Yippie-skippie...

ford at cmgate.com

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