I’m thinking about replacing the crank-up TV antenna with a new fixed system. Is there anything available that can receive TV signals and boost Wi-Fi reception built into one unit? —Bill, 2011 Sundance 2900MK
There are several options when it comes to upgrading the old crank-up “bat wing” antenna that was the standard for many years. The misconception in the RV world is that old antenna will not receive the new high definition signal, which is not true. The challenge is HD signals have to be full strength, while the old analog signal could be weak and still get a picture. The downside is the bat wing has very limited range for HD.
The first upgrade is called a Wingman, which is an add-on grill-type antenna that boosts the signal about twice as far. It will do nothing for Wi-Fi, just HD signal.
The next option is to replace the antenna with a permanently mounted version known as the Rayzar. This is an easy swap as it fits in the same hole drilled through the roof. It does need to be rotated to the towers available, but gets about double the distance as the bat wing model. It also has no Wi-Fi capability.
Best option for antenna, in my opinion
The best option, in my opinion, is the Air 360+. It is a permanently mounted HD antenna that does not have to be positioned. Simply turn the unit on when you get to a new location and it turns 360 degrees in three points to identify any signals and store them. Then you do a channel search on your TV and it finds them all.
The Air 360 is just an HD antenna. The Air 360+ has three Wi-Fi cards that can either boost an existing signal or has 4G cell signal packages available.
With this model you will need the Gateway router that is mounted underneath from the inside of the rig.
I have come across a Magnadyne antenna that states it has Wi-Fi capabilities. However, there is very little information available on their site and I have not installed one. Maybe one of our readers that installed one has some reviews?
Another option would be to install a standard Rayzar antenna for better HD reception and then get a Wi-Fi booster that mounts inside the rig. Check out my article on routers here.
You might also enjoy this from Dave
How do I install a Wi-Fi antenna on my RV’s roof?
I would like to install a King Falcon Wi-Fi antenna on the roof of my rig. Do I cut the rubber roof prior to attaching the antenna or attach it directly to the roof? —Andrew, 2021 Forest River VIBE 28RL
Dave Solberg is a leading expert in the RV industry and the author of the “RV Handbook.”
Read more from Dave here.
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