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I get many inquiries each month from customers looking for 50 ohm Coaxial cable assemblies for WiFi, cellular LTE and 900 MHz modems, gateways, routers and radios with SMA connectors.  The problem is that there is often confusion concerning the terminology used to describe SMA vs. RP-SMA (reverse polarity SMA) RF coaxial connectors. The most common question that I get on this topic is...

How do I tell the difference between SMA and RP-SMA connector???

So, I thought that our blog would be a good place to clear up any confusion once and for all...

Here are the facts...

  • Standard SMA connectors are commonly used on Cellular 3G 4G LTE devices.
  • RPSMA are normally reserved for 802.11 WiFi or WLAN devices.
  • 99% of the time, your device will have the "female" connector, and you'll need a "male" connector on your cable.

When purchasing bulk RF connectors, coaxial adapters, and coax cable assemblies and jumpers it is VERY IMPORTANT that you choose the correct connectors so you don't damage your wireless communication gear.  I'm using the infographic below to try to give you a simple way to identify the SMA connectors on your gear.

Here goes...

  • If your gear has a Standard SMA-Female (SSF) connector on it, then your cable needs to have Standard-SMA-Male.
  • If your gear has a Reverse Polarity SMA-Female (RSF) connector on it, then your cable needs to have RP-SMA-Male.
  • If you are looking to purchase customized RF coax cables (PT195, PT240, PT400) can be purchased through our website or can be custom configured on our vendor's "build your own coax" tool at: www.rfmax.us - link here.

SMA vs. RPSMA

Any other questions?  Just EMAIL us at any time!

Tech Help at Arcadian Inc. / arcantenna.com can be reached by email at techsupport@arcadianinc.com

Posted in News By Mike Crudele

I received a call today from a client that is planning to use the new IX14 Industrial dual LTE (MiMo) router from Digi.  The gentleman wanted to know what antennas I would recommend he use with this router / gateway which would be housed in a polycarbonate NEMA enclosure at a fixed location.  Since Digi International offers several of these types of industrial LTE cellular devices with MiMo LTE cellular connectivity, I figured I'd blog about ALL of the modems in this category. 

That would include: 

  • Digi IX14: (new item as of Q1 2019) LTE CAT1 with dual SIM for carrier failover and flexibility
  • Digi TransPort WR11XT: for retail, kiosk and industrial control applications
  • Digi TransPort WR21: for remote and mobile networking applications
  • Digi TransPort WR31: optimized for DIN rail or shelf mounting

Here were my recommendations for the best antennas for the above LTE cellular devices from Digi, by application...

 

RBDM-44-SS-6 (RFMAX "brick" style dual LTE antenna with thru-hole mount cables & connectors) This is best when you have a fixed site, typically outdoors, and you want to mount this IP67 rated antenna directly through the top of an enclosure.  This is very commonly used in oil & gas monitoring, railroad switching and water level monitoring.

RBMM-44-SS-6 (RFMAX "brick" style dual LTE antenna with magnetic mount cables and connectors) This is best when you have a fixed site, where the antenna will be mounted to the top of a METALLIC enclosure INDOORS.  These are used all the time with ATM machines, Vending Machines, and indoor Kiosks.

ROSA-698/2700-SNF (RFMAX high power "outdoor stick" antenna for 698-2700 Mhz) This antenna is best when you have one of three situations.  Each of these situations would require a mounting bracket and cable assembly (which are NOT included with the antenna)

1. Your modem is indoors, and you have a need to get the signal OUTSIDE of the building.  

2. Your modem is outdoors and the location is too remote for the "brick" antenna to get a good signal

3. Your modem is outdoors and you need to position your antennas UP above some nearby obstruction(s)

If you choose to use the ROSA-698/2700-SNF be sure to use TWO of these, and be sure to get the mounting brackets ad cable you'll need as well.  Here are the links to those accessories.

SBA1001 mounting bracket for angle mounting to a wall or mast.

ROSAHDM2 mounting bracket for mounting to a pipe.

PT195 coax cable jumpers to connect your Digi modem to the ROSA-698/2700-SNF antenna (N-Male & SMA connectors)

I want to be clear, we've provided three of the most popular antenna solutions for fixed LTE sites.  If you have a question for us regarding additional recommended antennas for the above LTE cellular modems from Digi, or if you want to discuss best antennas for cellular LTE devices from Cradlepoint, Sierra Wireless, PepLink, etc. Just EMAIL us at any time!

Tech Help at Arcadian Inc. / arcantenna.com can be reached by email at techsupport@arcadianinc.com

 

Posted in News By Mike Crudele

Why IP67 Antennas Sometimes Leak

February 6, 2019 2:20:44 PM EST

I wanted to offer feedback to all of you that I received from a customer this week, he offered an explanation for the water ingress of IP67 rated antennas from his experience...

I have a background in seismic exploration equipment - lots of field experience. We once had equipment deployed in Texas which would fill with water no matter what we did and the problem was everything we worked on for months. Ultimately we build cases from custom aluminum extrusion with machined grooves for O-rings and 3/8 inch plate aluminum against the O-rings. Not enough - water would still collect inside.

In the end, I defined a concept that I call "Vapour Pumping". Our cases had considerable volume inside and this is probably the basic problem with your antennas as well. During the night, humidity rises as the air cools. The lower temperature creates a vacuum in your case which no IP rated case with internal volume can deal with and air ingresses - not water. This high humidity air brought water with it which then condenses on the inside of the case as the outside air continues to cool.

In the morning, the heat comes up and the case releases the excess air that entered in the night, but the water remains in the case. Repeat for a week or so and you now have "mystery water" in the case. It did not fail it's IP67 rating, but it also is full of water.

Outdoor LED lamps same thing. What needs to be done is minimize the internal volume of the case.

I hope that insight might help.

Regards,
Rob

Posted in News By Mike Crudele

Alternate to Alien ALR RFID Antenna

February 1, 2019 6:22:28 PM EST

A customer called today, frustrated that they cannot find STOCK of the Alien ALR-8698 RFID antenna.  The ALR-8698 is a 10x10 inch, IP67 rated panel antenna for RFID with 70x70 beamwidth. It services both FCC (902-928 MHz) and ETSI (865-868 MHz) 

Our recommended, IN STOCK equivalent antenna is:

All of the above are IN STOCK and available at Arcadian Inc. 

Posted in News By Mike Crudele

My IP67 antenna has water in it, why?

January 22, 2019 6:17:15 PM EST

Recently, a customer complained that an IP67 panel antenna (in this case for RFID) that he purchased at our website www.arcantenna.com had taken on water, he asked if this is acceptable.  Well,  I do have an issue with an IP67 antenna taking on water, technically it should not happen, but... 

The way IP67 is defined is that IP stands for “ingress protection” and the first digit denotes solid particle protection (dust) and the “6” rating means that the ingress of dust is not entirely prevented, but it won’t enter in sufficient quantities to interfere with the operation of the antenna. 

The second digit “7”  is for liquid ingress protection (water) and a 7 rating should allow the antenna to be immersed in up to 1 meter of water for 30 minutes without taking on enough water to affect performance.

The antenna in question is clearly not meeting the IP67 rating.  However, these ratings are tested in a controlled environment and done just one time.  Which means that when temperatures fluctuate and materials expand and contract, and devices (in this case antennas) are in the field for years, or even just days, the rating can be lost. 

The reality is that I’ve not seen ANY antenna that truly lives up to the IP67 rating when it must face direct and often prolonged exposure to rain on the backplane, which was the case here. 

My suggestion in these cases is to purchase antennas with "weep holes" or "drop holes" or to simply drill the holes (at least two) yourself in the plastic antenna radome on the side that faces the ground.  The water is going to get in anyway, but these holes will allow it to drain out and dry quickly.  This is what is typically done in RFID tolling applications when the RFID antennas are placed with the backplane facing the sky (think EZ Pass, Sun Pass, Toll Pass, etc.)

Any other questions??? Write me at  techsupport@arcadianinc.com

Posted in News By Mike Crudele

How to identify Coaxial Connector Types

October 14, 2017 10:10:41 PM EDT

Over the years, we've had many customers come to us looking to clarify RF connector types when they are specifying and purchasing RF coaxial cable assemblies.  There are many different types of connectors out there, including Type-N, UHF (aka PL-259 / SO-239) TNC, RPTNC, BNC, SMA & RPSMA.

Most people can tell the difference between the "standard" connector types, but many people, ourselves included, find it difficult to identify the gender of reverse polarity connectors? Here we will do our best to help you identify the difference between male and female connectors in terms of their polarity—standard or reverse (RP). 

Standard Polarity Coaxial Connectors.

When trying to identify male and female connectors keep in mind the following:

  • When mating a plug and a jack, it is important to ensure that both connectors have the same polarity. For example, the plug and jack should both be standard polarity, or both must be reverse polarity. 
  • Typically, standard RF plugs are male, and the threads are on the inside of the shell.
  • Typically, standard RF jacks are female, and the threads are on the outside of the shell.
  • The shell of a plug (male) typically covers the shell of a jack (female).

Examples - standard polarity

  • A standard polarity female jack has a socket in the middle designed to receive the pin from the male plug, and the jack’s shell has threads on the outside. Here we have shown an SMA jack, typically found on devices such as a 3G/4G/LTE cellular gateway or a GPS receiver.  

female jack

  • A standard polarity male plug has a center pin that sticks out from the middle, and the plug’s shell has threads on the inside. Here we have shown an SMA plug, typically found on the end of a coaxial cable that connects to products such as a 3G/4G/LTE cellular gateway or a GPS receiver.

male plug

 

Examples - REVERSE polarity

  • A "reverse polarity" female jack has a center pin that sticks out from the middle, and the jack’s shell has threads on the outside. Shown here is a RPSMA-Female jack, typically found on such products as a 900 MHz ISM modem, 2.4/5 GHz 802.11 WiFI / WLAN radios or access points.

reverse polarity female jack

  • A "reverse polarity" male plug has a socket in the middle designed to receive the pin from the female connector, and the plug’s shell has threads on the inside. Here we have shown an RPSMA-Male plug, typically found on the end of a coaxial cable that connects to products such as a 900 MHz ISM modem, 2.4/5 GHz 802.11 WiFI / WLAN radios or access points.

    reverse polarity male plug

Remember:

  • standard polarity jack (female) has a socket, whereas a reverse polarity jack (female) has a pin.
  • standard polarity plug (male) has a pin, whereas a reverse polarity plug (male) has a socket.

Connector Types and Genders

The following table identifies for you the various types of connectors commonly used, and their genders:

Connector Type Male (Plug) Female (Jack)

Standard

Type N

 

Type N male plug connector

(Std. N-Male) pin with threads inside

Type N female jack connector

(Std. N-Female) socket with threads outside

UHF (PL259)

UHF (PL259) male plug connector

(UHF Male: PL-259) pin with threads inside

UHF (PL259) female jack connector

(UHF Female: SO-239) socket with threads outside

Standard

TNC

TNC male plug connector

(Std. TNC-Male) pin with threads inside

TNC female jack connector

(Std. TNC-Female) socket with threads outside

Reverse Polarity TNC

(RPTNC)

RPTNC male plug connector

(RPTNC-Male) socket with threads inside

RPTNC female jack connector

(RPTNC-Female) pin with threads outside

BNC

BNC male plug connector

(BNC-Male) pin with threads inside

BNC female jack connector

(BNC-Female) socket with threads outside

Standard SMA

SMA male plug connector

(SMA-Male) pin with threads inside

SMA female jack connector

(SMA-Female) socket with threads outside

Reverse Polarity SMA

(RPSMA)

RPSMA male plug connector

(RPSMA-Male) socket with threads inside

RPSMA female jack connector

(RPSMA-Female) pin with threads outside

 

I hope the descriptions and images have helped you understand the differences between the connector type, polarity, and gender.

Keep in mind that there are also "Reverse-Thread" and "Reverse-Polarity / Reverse-Thread" Connectors, but that's a discusson for another day!!!!!!

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Posted in News By Mike Crudele

UHF, PL-259, SO-239. What is the difference?

October 14, 2017 11:05:07 AM EDT

I get many inquiries each month from customers looking for NMO cable kits and mounts for radios with UHF connectors.  The problem is that there is often confusion concerning the terminology used to describe UHF connectors. The most common questions that I get on this topic are:

  • Is PL-259 the same as UHF Male?
  • Is SO-239 the same as UHF Female?

So, I thought that our blog would be a good place to clear up any confusion once and for all!

Here are the facts...

  • UHF-Male (or UHF Plug) is THE SAME as PL-259.  
  • UHF-Female (or UHF-Jack) is THE SAME as SO-239.

The above connectors are used in applications like amateur / HAM radio, CB / Citizens Band radio, Marine radio & VHF radio.  Typically, the SO-239 (UHF Female/UHF Jack) is installed ON THE RADIO, and the PL-259 (UHF Male/UHF Plug) is installed ON THE CABLE.  The two "mate" and are collectively known as a UHF Connection. 

UHF Male PL-259 vs. UHF Female SO-239

 

 

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Posted in News By Mike Crudele

Pulse Shadow Low Profile Antenna - WhitePulse recently introduced a new white finish option for its popular Shadow Low Profile Transit (SLPT) series of antennas. These highly durable low profile antennas provide a compact vehicle mount alternative without sacrificing mechanical or electrical performance. The Shadow antenna series offers a wide array of products covering Public Safety, LTE, Smart Grid, WLAN, ITS and DSRC applications operating at 698-960/1710-2170/2400-2700/4900-6000 MHz. Antennas are available in both NMO and tamper-proof direct mount products, which support multiple cable and connector options.


"SLPT antennas are an excellent choice for both on-vehicle as well as off-vehicle applications," explains Olivier Robin, general manager for Pulse Electronics Wireless Infrastructure business unit. "These compact antennas can provide good gain, as high in 5dBi in a package less than 3.2 inches (xx mm) tall. They are optimized for performance covering specific frequency bands needed for public safety, WiFi, and 3G/4G LTE markets; and there are even versions well-suited for the emerging ITS and DSRC transportation markets."


This new on-vehicle, low-profile, white radome antenna provides an additional cosmetic option to a proven product line.


For more details and/or to purchase Pulse Shadow antennas, click here...

Posted in News M2M By HP

Laird WPD136M6C-001 AntennaRecently, we have had numerous inquiries for our WPD136M6C-001 Full Spectrum Multi-Band antenna, and I wanted to inform our customer base that WE HAVE THIS UNIT AVAILBLE – lead time is approximately 3-4 weeks to deliver to your dock. This antenna is MADE IN THE USA, and is excellent for any government, military, utility company, or public safety / LMR-land mobile radio application in the UHF and/or VHF range.  

 

The WPD136M6C-001 is an IP66 rated, all in one, omni-directional roof / NMO mount multi-band antenna that covers the following frequencies: 136-174, 380-520, and 760-870 MHz (which is inclusive of the Tetra PMR and P25 bands.)

 

If you have applications that can use this antenna, please contact us immediately, and we will be happy to help! 

 

Check out the WPD136M6C-001 here...

Posted in News M2M By System Administrator

We are looking for dealers who cater to land surveying and earth-moving professionals.  We need partners who can help us provide the after-market with OEM & OEM equivalent replacement antennas for Topcon, Trimble, SiTech, Javad surveying gear, rugged modems and earth moving equipment. 

 

450 Mhz antennas
900 Mhz antennas
2.4 Ghz antennas
3G/4G cellular antennas
GPS antennas

 

Contact us today at 1-888-925-5967 or Email us at: customerservice@arcadianinc.com

 

Posted in News By System Administrator
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