Belkin Pre-n. Mac Powerbook. Weak Signal. Any thought?

Discussion in 'Computer Support' started by Roy G. Biv, Feb 2, 2006.

  1. Roy G. Biv

    Roy G. Biv Guest

    I'll try to keep this simple and straightforward.

    I have a Belkin Pre-N Router set up in a utility area one floor below
    and across an outdoor access corridor from my apartment. Cannot run
    CAT-5 to the apartment. I get a good to excellent wireless signal on
    several WinXP-SP2 machines using the internal antennas on the
    notebooks. I get only a very weak signal on a Mac Powerbook (no
    surprise) and sometimes lose it completely.

    Before I went to the Belkin, I had a Netgear router which gave a weak
    signal with the PC's and nothing with the Mac. So, the Pre-N router
    works well if there's an adquate antenna on the receiving end.

    Question: Is there anything I can do to increase the signal
    sufficiently to use the Mac without running cable? I have a Belkin
    Pre-N notebook card that greatly increases signal strength on the
    Windows machines, but does not run on the Mac.

    Is it possible to set up some kind of wireless device in my apartment
    that will forward the signal? I do not know the difference between an
    access point, bridge, repeater, whatever. Will any of those do the
    job? Would a USB dongle or something that I can add to the Mac get me
    a better signal, at least bringing up to the level of the PC's?

    If I lose some speed, I'll probably not notice, so that's not that big
    a deal. Cost (while obviously important) is not the primary driver
    here. I need to get the signal strong enough to run steaming
    applications on the Mac; a few bucks more or less isn't going to make
    that much difference.

    Hope this is clear. I obviously don't have detailed knowledge on
    wireless systems (or Macs for that matter). My efforts to educate
    myself haven't been all that successful. If anyone can recommend a
    good primer on wireless (through Pre-n technology ideally) I'd
    appreciate knowing about it.

    much thanks for any help.
    Roy G. Biv, Feb 2, 2006
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  2. Roy G. Biv

    Mitch Guest

    I have a Belkin Pre-N Router set up in a utility area one floor below
    The problem is that metal case on the PowerBook.
    Most reliable solution is probably to use a second wireless router in
    another location to repeat the signal. You don't have to connect it to
    That also shows a difference in the ability to grab the signal; the
    PowerBook hasn't adopted Pre-N. Maybe you should set the router to use
    802.11g instead of Pre-N; you probably aren't using the speed
    difference and having the common standard might help the PowerBook to
    keep connected.
    I don't know offhand if the card is likely to have a Mac driver
    available. You may not have to have one from the manufacturer; the
    chipset in the card or whoever is promoting the standard may have one
    built for Mac OS.
    Mitch, Feb 3, 2006
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