4 Replies Latest reply: Jul 8, 2010 12:31 PM by garyroach RSS

DP55KG board & external antenna/very weak signal

Chinch Community Member
Currently Being Moderated

Hello everyone... I have a DP55KG motherboard, with the on-board (CSR brand) bluetooth module... with the external antenna attachment. I have it set up per the instructions, and I am still getting a very weak/low quality signal... as little as 25-30% signal from less than 2 feet away from the external transmitter/receiver. I consider that pretty horrible.

 

I have followed the (very short and worthless) instructions on installing the antenna:

 

I attached the round antenna connector to the internal bluetooth chip.

I fed the antenna to the outside of the chassis, removed the paper backing and attached it to the outside of the case.

 

That is the extent of the instructions provided; no advice on how to route it, a good place to attach the external receiver, etc. Very vague instructions.

 

Here are the troubleshooting steps I have taken (all from personal knowledge.. none mentioned in the documentation):

 

* I have checked to ensure the connection between the antenna lead and the on-board bluetooth chip is secure and is not loose or improperly connected. I have reseated it several times even, to make sure I am getting the tactile feedback of that 'click' (not a bad click or snap like i broke it). I mean you can just feel when they snap together properly. The top part is flat and even, so they are flush together... so you can just take my word on that part... it is not the result of a poorly seated connection at this point.

 

* I have kept the wire lead as far away from anything inside the chassis that I feel could cause any electromagnetic interference.... it is physically as far away from any such devices as the case alllows.

 

* I have tried to eliminate any *external* EMI/RF interference as best I can. That is, any cordless phone or device operating in the 2.4 spectrum... I have cut the wireless off on my router... cut off and moved cell phones out of here, made the wife leave the room....   anything that gave off any bad juju.

 

 

Can anyone offer me any advice? How did everyone else install their antenna? Where is it stuck to on the outside of the chassis?

 

Also, what can I do to improve the situation? Should I add extra insulation like some electrical tape or some other sheilding to the wire/lead? A better place to mount the external patch, or a better idea on how to route it?

 

It seems to me that attaching it to metal would help pick up the signal more, acting as sort of a conductor... am i wrong? Maybe this is the problem, that the case is carrying some grounded/ungrounded current or something which is messing it up?

 

I'm stumped, any advice... I would really appreciate. Any way to improve this thing.. or do I just need to buy an external USB adapter or something with 2.1+EDR and a class 1 power rating (more transmitting power... i believe the motherboard one is class 2, aka 10m/30ft)... but i am not sure at all since Intel won't even mention who makes the bluetooth chipset or any other pertinent information.

 

* I have checked for any cuts or damage to the antenna wire's sheilding and cannot find any. Personally, I feel the shielding on this antenna is inadequate... there is next to none, especially considering it is going to be partially confined in a metal case with all kinds of interfence.

 

 

[edit: OK, looks like 250+ people have read this... but no reply yet... so I will ask this then: Am i the only one experiencing this problem, or has anyone else had this or a similar problem?]

  • 1. Re: DP55KG board & external antenna/very weak signal
    rwalker Community Member
    Currently Being Moderated

    Well this may be a bit late, or maybe you found a solution you can share...

     

    Seeing the same thing.  The TINY usb bluetooth adapter plugged into a front USB port gets at least 20 feet, the internal like 7 (and even then it's flakey).  Anyone got an option?  Think I will just disable it and usb the little USB unit that I paid $3 for!  So sad...

  • 2. Re: DP55KG board & external antenna/very weak signal
    Dan_Intel Community Member
    Currently Being Moderated

    To improve this situation with the low quality signal problem with the Bluetooth antenna, try the following recommendations:

    - Ensure the antenna is not broken and in good working conditions.

    - Enable and disable Onboard Bluetooth in the BIOS set up menu.

    - Make sure the antenna is properly recognized in device manager

    - Update your motherboard BIOS

    - If necessary, replace the antenna

  • 3. Re: DP55KG board & external antenna/very weak signal
    w00tGrant Community Member
    Currently Being Moderated

    Hi Chinch. You should be getting much better BT connection then that as my testing would show great performance at 8-10 meters distance depending on the installation. You say that you "fed the antenna to the outside of the chassis, removed the paper backing and attached it to the outside of the case". Is the antenna stuck to the metal side panel? My recommendation is to route the cable from the bluetooth module internally to the front of the chassis and out one of the empty drive bays. A great place to stick the antenna is inside one of the plastic drive bay covers. This will keep the antenna away from grounded metal panels (rf killer) and hides it behind the plastic. Can you try that method if your chassis allows for it and let me know how that works for you?  Regards Grant

  • 4. Re: DP55KG board & external antenna/very weak signal
    garyroach Community Member
    Currently Being Moderated

    Hi;

    I've just been putting together a new system with a DP55KG mother board. I took one look at the antenna and asked "where to I put this thing". About 40 years of electronic experience says that if I pasted it to any metal surface that I might as well put it in a copper lined box and bury it in the back yard. The metal will completely short the thing out. I'm supprised that you got any reception. Pulling it through one of the drive bays and pasting it to the plastic cover is a good idea. Most plastics are transparent to RF. You might just paste the antenna to the back of one of the unused plastic bay covers. Then it's out of sight. If you have an Atec case like mine you will have to remove the mounting hardware attached to the cover plate (what a great case). Last, don't worry about the cable. It may be small but it is still coax. Nothing comes out and nothing goes in. Well almost nothing.

     

    I hope this is a help

     

    Gary R

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