Repair4Laptop: Do-It-Yourself Laptop and Notebook Upgrading, Modding and Repairing
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Adding External or Internal WireLess LAN Antennas for Laptops & Notebooks

Do you want to build an (external) wireless antenna for your laptop or notebook? Here are links to free do-it-yourself instructions. If you have written a repair guide yourself (or if you know of a report not linked here), please submit a new entry.



Adding an External WireLess Antenna to a Laptop or Notebook

Acer Aspire One D150If you are looking to get some serious wireless performance out of your netbook then you might consider adding an external RP-SMA jack and antenna to it. A subtle addition is adding a 802.11N mini-PCI card.
Apple PowerBook G4 12''Just a few quick cuts to modify a 12" Powerbook to take an external antenna.
Apple PowerBook G4 Aluminium (AlBook 1.25GHz)Collinear WiFi antenna: external miniature collinear WiFi (802.11b/g) replacement antenna for Apple Powerbook (Al, 1.25GHz).
Apple PowerBook G4 (Titanium) TiBookHow to build a really short pigtail with a female SMA connector and a lucent connector. You have to remove the connector of the internal antenna from the airport card, because it can only handle one antenna. The pigtail can be fed only through the PCMCIA slot connected to the card. Now the notebook has an external antenna connector.
ASUS A2HHomemade laptop Wi-Fi amplifier (external) review.
DELL Latitude C840How to add an external antenna SMA connector.
ECS DeskNote A530Replacing the orginal antennas by an external one, replacing the big BNC connector by a smaller "N" connector.
Fujitsu P-5000 [archived link]How to upgrade the RAM, the hard disk and access WiFi [video].
Toshiba Satellite Pro 6100Opening the case to add an external wireless antenna.

Adding or Changing an Internal WireLess Card (miniPCI, PCI Express, USB) or Antenna to a Laptop or Notebook

Acer TravelMate 426LCHow to add a Intel 2200BG miniPCI WLAN card and an internal antenna (in German)
Apple iBook Dual-USBHow to refit an iBook without AirPort card, with a Senao 200mW wireless PCMCIA card. With some dremel work on the antenna connector, the card just fits.
Apple iBook G3 Clamshell (Indigo)PCMCIA mod: how to use a cheap Orinoco Silver PCMCIA card (or any other card with Lucent chip) instead of an AirPort card. An illustrated explanation.
Apple MacBook Pro Core Duo [2006]How to Upgrade a core Duo-based MacBook with a PCI Express 1x card to support WiFi 802.11n. Tools, parts, pictures and disassembly tips to get the switch done easily.
COMPAQ Evo N620cDisassembly manual about adding a wireless miniPCI card (based on Atheros chipset) and better antenna (in German).
DELL Latitude C840Improving wireless reception by replacing the Dell 1150 miniPCI card with an aftermarket model (Netgate 5354MP) and the addition of a 2nd antenna.
HP Pavilion ZE 5400EAA complete disassembly with four objectives: clean fans and exhaust airways of dust to improve air flow and cooling - investigate poor wireless performance - investigate faulty power switch - investigate broken floppy drive.
IBM ThinkPad T23Picture gallery about an installation of an internal WLAN miniPCI card and antennas (in German).
IBM ThinkPad T23Wireless internal antenna installation instructions.
Panasonic ToughBook CF-29How to replace and upgrade the internal WiFi antenna.
Sony VAIO PCG-SR31KIntegrated WIFI laptop hack: use the space left by the PCMCIA slot to fit a USB WiFi adapter in and wire it up to the USB port internally.
Sony VAIO PCG-U101Manufacturer promotion pictures from the inside, showing e.g. where to find the wireless antenna (in Japanese).
Sony Ericsson GC83 Wireless Network CardMake a new antenna to replace the one broken off inside the PCMCIA card.
External WiFi Antenna in PCMCIA SlotAdd range to your laptop's WiFi card by installing a removable antenna which is connected to the internal wireless card via the PCMCIA card slot. You need: an antenna, a short pigtail connector, a pigtail to RP-TNC connector and a "blank" PCMCIA card.

How to Build External WireLess Antennas, Boosters, Extenders & Signal Reflectors

802.11b Homebrew WiFi Can Antenna ShootoutBuild your own Tin Can Waveguide WiFi Antenna (Cantenna).
Laptop Mini Wireless AntennaThe antenna uses thin RG58 cable and is only 2 sectors long. The size was chosen so it could be housed inside the tube of an old pen, to provide rigidity and protection to the antenna.
Easy Homemade 2.4 Ghz Omni AntennaAn easy step-by-step guide go making a homemade wireless antenna, for a fraction of the cost of commercial antenna. Uses readily available parts, and requires no specialist tools or knowledge.
4km WiFi Range w/ $5 DIY AntennaMake 2.4GHz parabolic mesh dishes from cheap but sturdy Chinese cookware scoops & a USB WiFi adaptor.
Cheap DIY Parabolic AntennaHere is a cheap DIY parabolic antenna (more of an antenna add on or extender or reflector) that boosts a wireless signal in one direction by at least 50%. The antenna is made from Mylar instead of tinfoil and cardboard. The guide includes a cutout for the cardboard.
Wide Angle SectorHomebrew 2.4 GHz 14 dBi Wide Angle Sector antenna.
Circular Waveguide AntennaAn antenna for 2.45 GHz / 802.11b / WiFi / WLAN made from a whiskey tin.
Cheap CantennaBuilding a cheaper self-made wireless cantenna (in Italian).
AirTuxBuilding a 2.4GHz vertical collinear omnidirectional antenna.
BiQuadThe construction of a BiQuad 802.11b Antenna 11dBi, wide band.
Extend Your SignalDifferent do-it-yourself wireless antenna guides.
SteerCanHow to build a steerable 802.11 cantenna.
Discone AntennaThese antennas are omnidirectional with a donut type of coverage pattern as opposed to the more directional "Cantennas".
Pen AntennaA 2.4Ghz vertical collinear antenna for 802.11 applications.
BiQuad DishHow-To: Build a WiFi biquad dish antenna.
WiFi Antenna Extender HackTurn your standard WiFi antenna into one just like the $30 range extender antennas for about 5 cents.
Satellite Dish Wireless ExtenderA DIYer's quick guide to cheap wireless extension. Think old satellite dishes, USB dongles and plastic bags and you'd be on the right tracks to upping wi-fi signal by 4 bars.
0-Euro-Yagi-Uda-AntennaHow to make a zero Euro styropor-yagi-uda antenna from some discarded waste (in German).
Weber Grill AntennaHowto build an antenna from grill equipment.

Antennas for USB Sticks

Realtek RTL8187B Wireless 802.11g 54Mbps Network Adapter USBHow to attach a SMA connector to a WLAN USB stick to connect an external antenna to gain a better signal strength.

Antennas for PCMCIA & PC-Cards

SMC-2632 PC-CardTransceiver modification to add an SMA connector for external antennas. This is an inexpensive (under $100 US Dollars) 802.11b wireless ethernet card. The thing that makes this card remarkable is the fact that the manufacturer left mounting holes in the PCB to accomodate a PCB mount SMA RF connector. With a little patience, soldering skills and crafty x-acto knife handiwork, you can modifiy your card to accomodate any antenna you deem necessary to close that RF link. The maximum output power of this card is 50mW.
CNet CNWLC-811-3V Wireless PC-CardExternal Antenna Mod. This piece of surgery reveals the concealed PCB pads for an external antenna jack. A coalition of the willing was formed to expose the secrets of this PC-Card.

How to Build a WiFi-Meter

Wifi-MeterA selfmade WiFi signal strength meter.

Troubleshooting in General

N.N.Troubleshooting Laptop Wireless Connections.
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© Werner Heuser 2005-2014 · http://repair4laptop.org/wireless_lan_antennae.html · last change Sat Mar 1 2014