I have the MF275R and through testing and reading determined that you do need 2 antennas for the unit for LTE it uses MIMO (Multi-in, Multi-out) signaling.
It appears based on my testing, the right port (when viewing the back of the unit) is the receive antenna and the left port is the transmit. Through further testing it seems (at least in my location) that the receive is vertical polarization and the transmit is horizontal. The polarization means that if you use a directional antenna (like a yagi) the transmit one should be horizontal and the receive one should be vertical.
Hope this helps.
Thank you for that. Now we are getting somewhere.
So looking at the hub from the front with both rabbit ears removed, the antenna connector which shows on the right (left if viewing from the back) should be polarized so that it connects to the vertical component in a MIMO antenna array and the opposite (horozontal) for the other side.
Sorry, but it gets confusing when you speak of looking from the front and or/looking from the back. Maybe we should refer to the SIM card side (right from the front, left from the back) and the non-SIM card side.
Based on my testing, it looks like the SIM card side antenna should be horizontal polarization and the non-SIM card side should be vertical polarization.
This is based on my changing the antenna polarization and running speed tests. Since MIMO can use reflected and bounced signals, this may be unique to my installation. So it may be case of "your mileage may vary".
I would try your directional MIMO antenna connected as I have suggested and run some speed tests. Then switch them and run some more tests. Connect it in whatever way yields the best results.
So I have an existing Yagi antenna with only one direction (vertical I presume). Can I use it on an MF275R on the receive side and then use the built-in antenna for horizontal (transmit)?
Related question - is there an advantage to the MF275R over the MF970? I don't need it for travel purposes, and do not need the phone option. It would be continuously plugged in so that I can have remote wifi control for my thermostat and security camera.
mmax, you can certainly hook up your existing Yagi to the receive side which is the right SMA antenna connector when viewed from rear or the "non-SIM card side", whichever way is easier to orient yourself.
I ran like this for a while until I hooked up two antennas as I had a Yagi for the old HSPA rocket hubs. You will get good download and OK upload that way depending on your signal strength etc.
One thing to note is that some older wide band Yagi's don't go up to the 2600Mhz that I think Rogers uses in some areas for LTE. Since it's on the receive side it won't matter too much, but you probably won't get the full gain rated on the antenna.
Related to the comparison of the MF275 and the MF970, I don't have experience with the MF970 but in looking at the info online, it looks to be geared toward being a portable device (small, large internal battery, no exposed antennas...) where the MF275 is geared toward a somewhat more permanent installation.
Hope that helps.
Thanks... it looks like my existing antenna doesn't hit 2.6 Ghz, which is what I can get at our cottage. Any suggestions on a good antenna and where to find it?
I just experimented with my Wilson triangular plastic looking Yagi antenna that I have had on a pole beside my house for awhile. I used it to good effect with the Erikkson W35 Hub, so I thought I'd try it with the MF275R. I attached it to the non-SIM side antenna connector. It did not go particularly well. The interface showed three bars of signal strength but I get four bars without it and my Internet was noticeably slower with it attached. So, I am back to the rabbit ears that came with the Hub. It actually gets pretty nice results (23 Mbps Down and 8 Mbps Up). I am pretty satisfied with that considering that I got less than 5 Mbps down and 2 or 3 Mbps up with the MF28B which could only connect to the standard 4G network.
I don't really think that an external antenna is going to improve my speeds on the MF 275R that much.
Anyone want a used Wilson white plastic Yagi antenna free? I'll throw in the pole
Geezer - that's pretty encouraging news. I'd be very satisfied with that level of connection speed. I've got the same Yagi that you do, with the same results on a 763s Aircard that I'm replacing with the MF 275R. Will let you know how it looks. I'm hopeful as we do get very good signal strength at our cottage.
I also found the "rabbit ears" worked surprisingly well, but external antennas really improved speed and repeatability/stability. I had about -100 to -110 dBm signal with the standard antennas and went to -67 to -80 dBm with the external antennas.
I used 2 of the following antennas, one horizontal one vertical about 1m apart:
There is also another more compact and less expensive option that I have not tried, that doesn't have the same gain as the Yagi's and may work well if you already have reasonable coverage:
There are also several other similar options on Amazon.ca. Searching for "wide band Yagi" or "LTE MIMO antenna" gets several "hits".