External Cell Antenna

I'm looking for an external antenna for my cell phone, to be mounted on the vehicle...preferrably mag-mount...anyone got any recommendations?
Well, this post is several months old and I cannot believe nobody replied, but I guess better late than never huh? Hehe.

I will recommend the Wilson Trucker Cellular antenna over anything else on the market. I bought one last year at the recommendation of Chris Sokol and I have been thrilled by the performance thus far.

I actually mostly use mine at home. I live out in a rural area and the nearest cell tower is miles away and the terrain here is hilly. Before getting this antenna, I had no signal here at home at all.

With the antenna, I was boosted to 1-2 bars of signal, which is a pretty dramatic improvement.

But the real gem was the 3 watt amplifier I purchased. With the amp and the Wilson antenna, a phone that use to get no signal here now always maintains 3-4 bars of signal and I have never had a dropped call on my end. I was shocked. It's just like having the old 3 watt analog bagphones pretty much.

But to get this full effect, you need both the antenna and an amp. The antenna costs upwards of $50 and my amp (made by Inteligain) ran around $200. Plus, you'll need an adapter to fit it to the phone, but those are cheap.

IMHO, this was the best investment of 2004 for me and I swear by mine. They really make that much difference! I can only imagine how much your power/signal would be boosted in flat terrain. I now take advantage of my 3500 free night and weekend minutes and also use this cell phone for nowcasting. It has been well worth the money I have invested in it.

I hope this has been helpful. I also apologize for not being around to comment when you posted this back in November. But perhaps it will still be helpful to you or to someone.

what phone?

What phone do you use?

Some don't have provisions for an external antenna, others do.
I'm using a Wilson antenna as well. It really helps out on some of the dead spots around North Central OK. I suppose one of the amplifiers George talks about would help in that area too.

I was using a smaller mag-mount 7 dBi gain antenna and it did help out some. They aren't very expensive (about $20) and they do work. The Wilson antenna IS NOT mag-mount though.

I'm using a Motorola Flip Phone with Cingular Service. Sorry, I can't remember the exact model of phone, but it has a small external antenna port on the back that bypasses the built in antenna.
You can buy just the mag mount and just screw in the Wilson Antenna. I got the biggest magnet I could find. It works great.
I got a wilson trucker and a clamp mount at a local truck stop, they have all kinds of antenna accessories and adapters for most any phone.
I had it clamped to my luggage rack, worked great until an encounter with a downed power line last year. Just ordered an new one, gonna use a magnet mount this time, though...
Really helped with my Sprint reception, I could actually pull over to the shoulder without losing the call! Actually, I had coverage in remote areas of western Oklahoma that I didn't have before.
Can these external cell antennas and boosters be used to improve the reception I get with my Merlin(Sprint PCS data card)? If not, does anybody know of anything that can extend the range of my data card?
A lot of the data cards have an antenna socket, often visible when you move the antenna to a different position. certainly so with the Nokia branded units.All you need is a patch lead from the card to the external cellphone antenna.
Wilson Trucker Celluar Antenna

After reading the recommendations on this site, I purchased the Wilson trucker antennae from a Ebay vendor, and it works great with my Nokia phone! I've tried it out at some low spots around town where I usually only have 0-20% signal strength, and I'm getting 60% plus signal strength with better consistency....highly recommended.....GF
Have any of you tried a wireless cellular signal booster like this?

Just wondered if they helped at all. The theory is they help boost any phone's signal. If you do use one, does it have to be mounted to a window to work properly, or is the roof OK?

Chris K.

Chirs, I've never used this product but I don't quite see how it can work. I suspect it is in the same category as some of those hypersonic pest devices that scare off insects with sound or certain police radar jammers advertised in the back of men's magazines.

I use a Wilson antenna with my cell phone and have had great success. I can't afford the extra expense (and weight of carrying on a plane) of the amplifier but I never missed in during 2004. Of course, it is easier to use a cellphone for voice than for data.

Bill Hark
I too went with with Wilson...last wednesday I went on a storm assignment and was doing 75mph on then turnpike when a large hawk came across the highway and struck my windshield. During the impact..the hawk took out my brand new on the glass cell antenna, then he struck my anemometer taking out two cups. I never found the hawk..antenna or cups. I recently switched to wilson mag mounts, stronger ..shorter profile...better signal that glass mounts........and I added a twin antenna to plug into my laptop using a wireless singular internet card. I like them and am currently field testing them.Alan
I just installed the Wilson Trucker antenna. My home is somewhat rural, Im used to half strength, its now full strength. I mounted it on a three magnet mount I bought at the hamfest yesterday and I recommend a spring. Im very impressed!

I think most truckstops carry them, I saw them at at least two before picking one up on the way home from Tampa.
I would reccommend the wilson mag mount antenna as well. I live in a rural area as well, with lots of hills. Since purchasing the antenna, I have NOT EVER had a problem with signal, or dropped calls due to signal loss.
I went on a dry run yesterday. I took a tour of south Georgia (talk about the middle of nowhere) between Valdosta and a little hamlet called Fargo, I only had a call dropped once, and that was I think because the phone wasnt cell hopping. I turned the phone off/on, it found another site, 2 bars but enough to resume calling. Im using the Wilson Trucker antenna, I would recommend it! I got some cool pics of the front that came through yesterday, reported some small hail to my buds at Jax NWS office, so the chase vehicle has been christened!!
I use the wilson mag mount antenna with the wilson dual band 3 watt booster for my sony-erikson pc card and I get full service for miles after my cell phone goes out of service. If you do buy a 3 watt booster be sure to go ahead and buy the dual band, I made the mistake of using the single band and found myself swithcing between the booster and just the external antenna while trying to drive and look up data on the internet. It is well worth the extra $100 to get the dual band. You can find these boosters on ebay for about $190 after shipping. Other benefits that no one has mentioned is the data speed is so much faster with the booster. On a good tower I get close to dsl speed while driving.
I know of at least one Media Chaser that uses this (or one similar) and it really does help. He's able to get better connections in areas that simply don't have regular cell service. They are a bit pricey, but if you use the cell for everything, then it's worth it.

Myself? I keep hoping for Christmas.
Im the only one having trouble with the wilson trucker antenna - worked well for a month and then quit - or my phone quit - either way somethings not working - sending unit back for new one
I've used the Wilson mag mount with amplifier for a couple of years now with a few different phones (different adapters). Adapters cheap and available at major truck stops. It helps reception big time. Wouldn't chase without it.

A friend of mine was chasing with me this year in his own vehicle. We were both using Cingular service and the Sony Ericsson GC83 PC card. When he would lose the signal, I would still have 3 or 4 bars of signal strength using the Wilson antenna. So, I would HIGHLY recommend it. Next year, I'll get the 3-watt booster to make it even better.