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Old 02-14-2011, 11:30 PM   #1
Ruby Red Lip
Join Date: Oct 2009
Posts: 50
Default cell phone reception

  • I enjoy fishing 20 to 30 miles south of Pensacola Pass. I have T-Mobile cell phone service and a $19.99 Nokia cell phone with a flashlight and a bottle opener. I usually pick up phone calls about 9 miles, or so offshore.
Anyone have any experience with cell antennas or boosters? Any idea how much cell reception can be increased? I have a 34 convertible so I can get some additional height for antenna mounting. How expensive? I would appreciate any information that I can get.
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Old 02-14-2011, 11:48 PM   #2
Ruby Red Lip
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 44

google cell phone boosters outdoor and you can find a few that would work. I don't know how much further offshore you could get with it but it would be a lot cheaper than a sat phone.
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Old 02-15-2011, 12:08 AM   #3
Neptune calls me "Daddy"
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Offshore you are more limited by lines of sight than by power. AT&T could have a cell tower with a gazillion watts, but if you are below the visible horizon it will miss you ("Scatter" thanks to atmospheric conditions at a gazzillion watts might provide very spotty service but chances are they won't here you since your transmitter is way underpowered).

An example. VERY rarely we could hear the Tower Controller at NAS New Orleans while in the flight pattern at NAS Pensacola. They shared a common frequency, and had strong, powerful transmitters. Aircraft have good receivers, but weaker transmitters. We could here both towers, but the towers could not hear each other and aircraft in either pattern could not hear each other..

The atmosphere can bend radio waves over a long distance based on atmospheric conditions like temperature and humidity.

Something like how sonars can sometimes hear submarines from THOUSANDS of miles away through "deep sound channels". Look up "SOSUS" on google.

But a Cell provider with a tower near the beach with good power will work better than a provider with a weak tower inland. Not sure where to find the maps.

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Old 02-15-2011, 11:30 AM   #4
Ruby Red Lip
Join Date: Oct 2007
Posts: 92

before the cell phone companys switched over to digital service 30 miles plus was a standard.that was with a 5 watt bag phone. the first "flip" type phone i had could call from 20 miles on a good day. when the phone companys started switching to digital thedistance offshore a call could be successfull made kept from decreaseing
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