$318 wireless networking kit extends WiFi for 5 miles

One problem with trying to extend WiFi range is assembling all the necessary gear to establish a strong directional signal both ways. HD Communications' HD262000 aims to be a simple, all-in-one point-to-point WiFi bridge kit adding up to 5 miles of range to 802.11b/g networks.
The HD26200 is made up of two high performance Ubiquiti network radios with integrated 17dbi dual polarity antennas that are configured in wireless bridge mode. The HD26200 bridge is also powered over ethernet, so no RF cables are required, only an outdoor CAT5 cable to bring both data and power to the radios.
At $318, it's not too expensive, especially given that it runs on PoE and doesn't require one to fiddle around dismantling routers to hook up tiny coax connectors. Unfortunately, it also requires direct line of sight: here's hoping that this is just to get the full advertised range. My own adventures in wireless bridging failed, even over a far smaller distance, thanks to thick brick walls between my router and my target machine. Press release [HD Communications via Engadget]

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4 Responses to $318 wireless networking kit extends WiFi for 5 miles

  1. Anonymous says:

    The one time I want a very tall glass house …

  2. Enochrewt says:

    Wow, 5 miles? Something like this would be really handy. I know I probably won’t get 5 miles in the very urban area that I live in, but if I could even just get 1 mile, that would cover most of my neighborhood and some nice parks to sit in this summer.

    But with increased range there’s increased interference and increased security dangers. I’d like to see a review.

  3. jplummer says:

    n GHz radio transmissions are line-of-sight by nature even with omnidirectional antennas (which these are not); you won’t magically be able to transmit around a brick building by getting a better pair of antennas. And it isn’t just line of sight you need; you must strive to avoid obstruction of the first Fresnel zone: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fresnel_zone

  4. Rob Beschizza says:

    Yeah, Jplummer — my own problems basically came down to there being a few feet of brick wall between my two points. Even over a few hundred feet with a uni antenna, the signal was barely usable.

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