MIMO antenna for T-Mobile 5G home internet gateway?

  • 30 August 2021
  • 31 replies
  • 21553 views

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Hi all - 
New T-Mobile home internet user, here.  I set up my 5G internet gateway (silver cylinder) this weekend and it works just fine.  I have Frontier DSL and Charter Spectrum now and T-Mobile is currently way outperforming Frontier DSL and outperforming Charter Spectrum almost always.

I found this article about installing a MIMO antenna using the internal gateway ports. 

https://www.waveform.com/a/b/guides/hotspots/t-mobile-5g-gateway

Has anyone tried it?  I would be interested in experiences and results.  Thanks in advance!


31 replies

Userlevel 3
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I’m curious too if this works. 

Some have seen improvements, and some have not.. I think it depends on how close you are to the towers, the direction you point the antennas, quality of the antennas and how high you mount them if the tower is at a higher altitude then you. It’s more of a try it and see, but remember if you break anything during this it could cost you $370 to replace that gateway according to my contract with T-Mobile Home Internet.
And those U.FL Male connectors on the built in antennas can be fragile so be careful when removing the ones connected, and connecting the pigtail ones.
Also, be sure to remove the sim card after powering down the until or it can drop inside the can and might be hard to get it out.

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It’s important to note that these antennas are *large* and generally meant for outdoor mounting like a satellite dish you’d use with DirectTV. The antenna is only a couple of feet long but certainly not meant to be put on your shelf next to the gateway.

Userlevel 2

I recently rolled the dice on waveforms external antenna. My parents chose T-Mobile for home internet because of the awesome results I have had at my home. They also lacked any other real options. I would strongly consider moving before I ever considered settling for CenturyLink or HughesNet and this is what they faced. Luckily T-Mobile was available so they signed up. Gateway arrives, I set it up, and run the first speed test. 21mbps up and 4mbps down. This was super disappointing considering I consistently see speeds over 250mbps down and 35-40mbps up at my home from T-Mobile. They have a tower 0.83 miles west of their location so I expected much more. The issue they face is that their property is densely wooded including a high volume of large trees that completely surround the home. So, I took a gamble on an external panel 4x4 mimo. Super simple to connect to gateway. I used a gps to determine the exact azimuth to the nearest tower. Ran some test speed test with the antenna on the same side as that tower and pointed in its direction. I also tried it in various other locations on all sides of the house running test from each. Ultimately the location on the same side and pointed at nearest tower showed best results so I mounted it up. Not difficult to do at all. The only issue I could see being a problem would be if the best location ended up being on the front center of the home. While it isn’t this massive sore thumb on the house it is noticeable. Luckily our spot ended up being the back corner of the house. With install complete I went back to run a series of speed tests. Using the external antenna saved us from the 21mbps down we started with. Now, my parents consistently get speeds of 350mbps down during the peak use times and sometimes as high as 500mbps down during off hours (1:00 am). Honestly, I was absolutely floored. I never expected gains like that. Now that I have seen the possibilities I don’t see why everyone would get one. If you are going to rely on you primary internet service arriving via 4g or 5g why wouldn’t you do everything to grab every extra bit of signal strength or speed or reliability you can. For me and my family it is totally worth every penny.

If anyone has any additional questions about it feel free to reach out. I would be happy to help. 

Does the antenna utilize coax from the roof to the interior of the home? I have an old satellite mounted rooftop that I’m thinking of removing and using one of these antennas so that I can use my old network rack in my basement where the old modem used to sit. 

Userlevel 5
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Hi all - 
New T-Mobile home internet user, here.  I set up my 5G internet gateway (silver cylinder) this weekend and it works just fine.  I have Frontier DSL and Charter Spectrum now and T-Mobile is currently way outperforming Frontier DSL and outperforming Charter Spectrum almost always.

I found this article about installing a MIMO antenna using the internal gateway ports. 

https://www.waveform.com/a/b/guides/hotspots/t-mobile-5g-gateway

Has anyone tried it?  I would be interested in experiences and results.  Thanks in advance!

I have it worth every penny if you are not getting good signal as is.

 

If you use the search I am sure you will find my countless post on it.

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Anyone install one of these panels inside? I get 3 out of 5 bars where I want to place it and 4 of 5 for LTE and get 350-450Mbps regularly, but if I go outside or move to improve, I get 450-500 regularly and sometimes see 750+. Wondering if I kept it where it should be and just mounted and used one of these antennas inside on the wall if it would make a big enough difference, being a higher gain antenna than whats in the unit. 

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I live in an HOA and outside mounting would be prohibited so I am going to use inside antenna mounted up against a window facing the tower.

 

The flip side is that I live in 3 story house and the 3rd level is my bedroom so no biggie to have the Waveform antenna face the tower from inside.

 

Will update once this is completed.

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Interesting. Wonder if they actually can’t do anything if you did mount outside though, because like with satellites, etc. it’s illegal to “ban” them. So most HOA’s here say no to them, but they can’t actually do anything for those who install them. 

 

I am just debating because I really don’t want to go into the attic to pull another cable for the device when now I have like R80+ blown in up there. If it was a year ago, I would have done it in a heat beat lol 

I recently rolled the dice on waveforms external antenna. My parents chose T-Mobile for home internet because of the awesome results I have had at my home. They also lacked any other real options. I would strongly consider moving before I ever considered settling for CenturyLink or HughesNet and this is what they faced. Luckily T-Mobile was available so they signed up. Gateway arrives, I set it up, and run the first speed test. 21mbps up and 4mbps down. This was super disappointing considering I consistently see speeds over 250mbps down and 35-40mbps up at my home from T-Mobile. They have a tower 0.83 miles west of their location so I expected much more. The issue they face is that their property is densely wooded including a high volume of large trees that completely surround the home. So, I took a gamble on an external panel 4x4 mimo. Super simple to connect to gateway. I used a gps to determine the exact azimuth to the nearest tower. Ran some test speed test with the antenna on the same side as that tower and pointed in its direction. I also tried it in various other locations on all sides of the house running test from each. Ultimately the location on the same side and pointed at nearest tower showed best results so I mounted it up. Not difficult to do at all. The only issue I could see being a problem would be if the best location ended up being on the front center of the home. While it isn’t this massive sore thumb on the house it is noticeable. Luckily our spot ended up being the back corner of the house. With install complete I went back to run a series of speed tests. Using the external antenna saved us from the 21mbps down we started with. Now, my parents consistently get speeds of 350mbps down during the peak use times and sometimes as high as 500mbps down during off hours (1:00 am). Honestly, I was absolutely floored. I never expected gains like that. Now that I have seen the possibilities I don’t see why everyone would get one. If you are going to rely on you primary internet service arriving via 4g or 5g why wouldn’t you do everything to grab every extra bit of signal strength or speed or reliability you can. For me and my family it is totally worth every penny.

If anyone has any additional questions about it feel free to reach out. I would be happy to help. 

Did you have to dissect the router to install or is this plug and play? If so what’s the connector type to plug and play 

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I recently rolled the dice on waveforms external antenna. My parents chose T-Mobile for home internet because of the awesome results I have had at my home. They also lacked any other real options. I would strongly consider moving before I ever considered settling for CenturyLink or HughesNet and this is what they faced. Luckily T-Mobile was available so they signed up. Gateway arrives, I set it up, and run the first speed test. 21mbps up and 4mbps down. This was super disappointing considering I consistently see speeds over 250mbps down and 35-40mbps up at my home from T-Mobile. They have a tower 0.83 miles west of their location so I expected much more. The issue they face is that their property is densely wooded including a high volume of large trees that completely surround the home. So, I took a gamble on an external panel 4x4 mimo. Super simple to connect to gateway. I used a gps to determine the exact azimuth to the nearest tower. Ran some test speed test with the antenna on the same side as that tower and pointed in its direction. I also tried it in various other locations on all sides of the house running test from each. Ultimately the location on the same side and pointed at nearest tower showed best results so I mounted it up. Not difficult to do at all. The only issue I could see being a problem would be if the best location ended up being on the front center of the home. While it isn’t this massive sore thumb on the house it is noticeable. Luckily our spot ended up being the back corner of the house. With install complete I went back to run a series of speed tests. Using the external antenna saved us from the 21mbps down we started with. Now, my parents consistently get speeds of 350mbps down during the peak use times and sometimes as high as 500mbps down during off hours (1:00 am). Honestly, I was absolutely floored. I never expected gains like that. Now that I have seen the possibilities I don’t see why everyone would get one. If you are going to rely on you primary internet service arriving via 4g or 5g why wouldn’t you do everything to grab every extra bit of signal strength or speed or reliability you can. For me and my family it is totally worth every penny.

If anyone has any additional questions about it feel free to reach out. I would be happy to help. 

Did you have to dissect the router to install or is this plug and play? If so what’s the connector type to plug and play 

Look at the OP. He has a link which goes into how to do it, etc. Simple answer is yes, you have to take the gateway apart to a point to do it. 

I had no luck with the waveform yagi or mimo antennas. The Nokia works best if you use all four ports. The only antenna that worked for me was the Bolton Long ranger antenna.

 

I am six miles from the tower with really dense forest.

I had no luck with the waveform yagi or mimo antennas. The Nokia works best if you use all four ports. The only antenna that worked for me was the Bolton Long ranger antenna.

 

I am six miles from the tower with really dense forest.

I’m curious about this setup. Are you saying that you have used four of these parabolic antennas?

Hi Ijh,

Yep, those are the antennas, I used four of those. Was expensive, well worth it and I have not lost the secondary signal once.
 

  1. First setup was two flat panels from Waveform for a 4X4 mimo. Would work for a day and then I would lose the secondary signal. This setup was also picking up a T-mobile tower that is not 5G, and thus dropping the secondary connection. Great download speed, upload speed was horrible at .30mbps
  2. Second setup was a Yagi combined with a flat panel for a 4X4 mimo. Would work for about three days and then drop the secondary signal. Great download speed, upload speed was horrible at .30mbps
  3. Third try was two Bolton Long Ranger Parabolic antennas & and it still dropped the secondary signal.
  4. Fourth try was 4 Bolton Long Ranger Parabolic antennas,it has held the secondary signal. It switches from band B2 to band B66 with 5G band N71. Download speed of 155mbps, upload speed of 15mbps.

Hi Ijh,

Yep, those are the antennas, I used four of those. Was expensive, well worth it and I have not lost the secondary signal once.
 

  1. First setup was two flat panels from Waveform for a 4X4 mimo. Would work for a day and then I would lose the secondary signal. This setup was also picking up a T-mobile tower that is not 5G, and thus dropping the secondary connection. Great download speed, upload speed was horrible at .30mbps
  2. Second setup was a Yagi combined with a flat panel for a 4X4 mimo. Would work for about three days and then drop the secondary signal. Great download speed, upload speed was horrible at .30mbps
  3. Third try was two Bolton Long Ranger Parabolic antennas & and it still dropped the secondary signal.
  4. Fourth try was 4 Bolton Long Ranger Parabolic antennas,it has held the secondary signal. It switches from band B2 to band B66 with 5G band N71. Download speed of 155mbps, upload speed of 15mbps.

Wow, that’s quite a setup. It does sound like it was worth it in the end, for your location.

 

How do you have these antennas mounted? At multiple points along an edge of your house? Vertically along a tower of some kind?

 

Edit: Also, were you able to return the Waveform antennas once you found they wouldn’t work well for you?

I mounted them vertically cross polarized, on two separate poles 420 feet away from my house, 20 feet above the ground,on the top of a hill away from my home. The antennas are still below the tree line. I would have to have a 60 ft tower if I were to go above the tree line. The 5G Nokia gateway is also at the antenna site inside a NEMA box that is cooled with fans. The box is from Hana Wireless. My home has a metal roof, so there is now way I would have been able to receive a consistent signal. Right now I just have a ethernet cable laying on the ground.

Every location is different. If your more than 2.50 miles from the tower and have a dense forest like mine, then I would suggest the parabolic antennas. A 4X4 yagi antenna setup might work for you. With the Bolton antennas I can connect to any T-mobile internet 5G tower within 12.5 miles or more. If one tower goes down for repair I can turn the antennas to 1 of 4 towers in my area. Parabolic antennas are much more versatile.

 

They will take them back. I kept them though.

I mounted them vertically cross polarized, on two separate poles 420 feet away from my house, 20 feet above the ground,on the top of a hill away from my home. The antennas are still below the tree line. I would have to have a 60 ft tower if I were to go above the tree line. The 5G Nokia gateway is also at the antenna site inside a NEMA box that is cooled with fans. The box is from Hana Wireless. My home has a metal roof, so there is now way I would have been able to receive a consistent signal. Right now I just have a ethernet cable laying on the ground.

Every location is different. If your more than 2.50 miles from the tower and have a dense forest like mine, then I would suggest the parabolic antennas. A 4X4 yagi antenna setup might work for you. With the Bolton antennas I can connect to any T-mobile internet 5G tower within 12.5 miles or more. If one tower goes down for repair I can turn the antennas to 1 of 4 towers in my area. Parabolic antennas are much more versatile.

 

They will take them back. I kept them though.

 

Cool, thanks for the information. I may be trying to put together something like this; I’m not 100% sure yet, though.

I used:

https://store.nwtowers.com/products/poynting-xpol-2-5g-us-antenna-a-xpol-0002-v3-11

 

Or:

https://smile.amazon.com/Bolton-Technical-Directional-X-Polarised-Connector/dp/B08SFP9XMZ/ref=sr_1_11?crid=37JTM2FCBQRAI&keywords=bolton+technical+long+range+antenna&qid=1643567874&sprefix=bolton%2Caps%2C166&sr=8-11

Have to get n41 & n71

3.01 Miles from 5G newly updated T-Mobile tower. Some trees but not dense.

Cylinder mounted outdoors and only using one set of antenna ports for above antenna.

Sometimes speeds are into the 400 Up range but normally 250 Down 10-20 Up. Before antenna

half of the above speed.

I am very Happy with External Antenna Route. Use this video to add pigtails:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wXSpbP8NuWw&t=773s

 

Or

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eiO-xqFbVho&t=7s

So I added another panel antenna and now averaging almost 300 down. So now I have the Poynting xpol and an Amazon purchased antenna. 
 

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B08CRN6HYY/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_glt_i_6E4PJ5XGZSAZ6P2F70SB?_encoding=UTF8&psc=1

Im very happy with setup. separate the panel antenna about 5 ft from each other. 

I recently rolled the dice on waveforms external antenna. My parents chose T-Mobile for home internet because of the awesome results I have had at my home. They also lacked any other real options. I would strongly consider moving before I ever considered settling for CenturyLink or HughesNet and this is what they faced. Luckily T-Mobile was available so they signed up. Gateway arrives, I set it up, and run the first speed test. 21mbps up and 4mbps down. This was super disappointing considering I consistently see speeds over 250mbps down and 35-40mbps up at my home from T-Mobile. They have a tower 0.83 miles west of their location so I expected much more. The issue they face is that their property is densely wooded including a high volume of large trees that completely surround the home. So, I took a gamble on an external panel 4x4 mimo. Super simple to connect to gateway. I used a gps to determine the exact azimuth to the nearest tower. Ran some test speed test with the antenna on the same side as that tower and pointed in its direction. I also tried it in various other locations on all sides of the house running test from each. Ultimately the location on the same side and pointed at nearest tower showed best results so I mounted it up. Not difficult to do at all. The only issue I could see being a problem would be if the best location ended up being on the front center of the home. While it isn’t this massive sore thumb on the house it is noticeable. Luckily our spot ended up being the back corner of the house. With install complete I went back to run a series of speed tests. Using the external antenna saved us from the 21mbps down we started with. Now, my parents consistently get speeds of 350mbps down during the peak use times and sometimes as high as 500mbps down during off hours (1:00 am). Honestly, I was absolutely floored. I never expected gains like that. Now that I have seen the possibilities I don’t see why everyone would get one. If you are going to rely on you primary internet service arriving via 4g or 5g why wouldn’t you do everything to grab every extra bit of signal strength or speed or reliability you can. For me and my family it is totally worth every penny.

If anyone has any additional questions about it feel free to reach out. I would be happy to help. 

Erik:

 

Which external panel 4x4 mimo did you use?
Thank you,
Chris

Poynting XPOL-2-5G Antenna (A-XPOL-0002-V3-01) 

from NorthWest Towers.

Anyone knows what are these ports on the new Tmobile Arcadyan KVD21 Gateway? M, M1, M2, D, 4, and 5 ports.  Which ports give the best signal and speed? 

My Arcadyan KVD21 Gateway automatically switches, using B2, between N41 and N71.

For the first few days I recorded between 200 and 300 download and 20 to 35 upload.  Then it slowed down to between averageing 40 to 70 download 10 to 20 upload. Yet, this slower speed was more consistent.  When I was getting the higher speeds it was between 11:30pm to about 10 or 11 am the next morning until it started slowing and sometimes freezing a a few seconds or videos buffering.   It no longer gets over 175 download even using N41.  I think it’s the trees growing here this spring.

I found out that the slower yet consistent speeds came from being on the N71.  The faster speeds came from the N41.  So, I’ve learned to trust the gateway to use the band that provides the best consistency.  Wondering what an antenna could do in this situation, I took the gateway and sat on the roof ridge for a few speed test.  The three tests were all just over 300 download and between 40 and 60 upload. 

If I want to optimize  the use of that signal that’s on my roof ridge would using an antenna at that spot bring that signal providing over 300 download speeds down to the gateway where I place it in my house?  Or, should I expect it to slow down a bit?  (Based on the above antennas people have mentioned.)     Thanks!

Anyone knows what are these ports on the new Tmobile Arcadyan KVD21 Gateway? M, M1, M2, D, 4, and 5 ports.  Which ports give the best signal and speed? 

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tqyGXm3yASc&list=PL8d9FovK2dNQHp0KWk8gG8XXvaKzaoSB3&index=12

Anyone knows what are these ports on the new Tmobile Arcadyan KVD21 Gateway? M, M1, M2, D, 4, and 5 ports.  Which ports give the best signal and speed? 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tqyGXm3yASc&list=PL8d9FovK2dNQHp0KWk8gG8XXvaKzaoSB3&index=12

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