Shared Knowledge


Hawking HSB2 WiFi Signal Booster - User Review


30 August 2007



Summary: Does work and helps but not a cure-all to stinking, useless, Wi-Fi.





My daughter does not have cable or access to DSL but has always lived in an area with plenty of non-encrypted wireless router signals. Now you will say it is not nice or some other comment about tapping into someone else’s paid-for Internet, but more and more, there are lots of free hotspots at cafes, schools and the like.


Anyway, the point being that in a rental house she was in, she could scan for and connect to a café hotspot just around the corner. This was with an 802.11g card installed into a desktop and a Hawking 7db gain WiFi antenna.


Then, she moved and although a scan of signals showed several non-encrypted G’s, most had very low signal strength and a reliable connection between her computer and the free, hotspot could not be made.


So, I bought the Hawking HSB2 WiFi signal booster and I am very happy to say that this product really works. Once I connected the HSB2 between her computer and a Linksys 7db gain antenna, wireless signals that once had only a signal strength of 8% or less now had a strength of 40% or so and she could establish a stable connection.


Just to experiment, I tried with the amplifier, without the amp, with a rubber ducky antenna and with the Linksys hi-gain and in the end, the best combination was with the HSB2 set at its highest transmit power of 500 milliwatts (mw) and using the Linksys hi-gain antenna placed as close to a window as I could get it.



Drawbacks of the HSB2? Really, there aren’t any. It does have a power adapter that requires access to 120V’s and comes with a pretty short amplifier to computer signal cable and I would have loved to have seen a better antenna included but I gather there is some FCC regulation about boosting WiFi signals too much because of the potential for interference.


So, this amp and a hi-gain antenna will really help you out if you can see any non-encrypted hotspots in your area and want to try to get a stable connection to them.



Ron - Shared Knowledge Home