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Author Topic: Linksys WRT54G RFI Survey  (Read 2086 times)
N3UMH
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Posts: 153




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« on: May 31, 2006, 12:24:25 PM »

I wonder what interference problems people have had with this very common box?  

I'm probably going to pick one up soon and know that a couple of people have had issues, but I just wanted to get an update from those who have them as to what kind of interference they've noticed.  I've searched here and the newsgroups and there seem to be a limited number of posts regarding this unit, but I know more of them are in use.

I know there are 3 or 4 of them within 2.4GHz range of my apartment, so I'm probably not going to be adding too much to the interference environment if I get one, but I'd like to be prepared and if it does tend to be an interference monster, I'd like to know and maybe select another box.

So, if you have a WRT54G, does it give you interference?  

If you've got another wired router+wireless access point by another manufacturer that is CLEAN, could you let me know the make+model?

I'm already in a high-noise environment and I don't want to make it worse.  Thanks!

Dan
N3OX
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W8JJW
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Posts: 90




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« Reply #1 on: May 31, 2006, 12:38:24 PM »

I have that exact Router/wireless access point along with a DSL Modem with no interfernce that I am aware of. It sits on the shelf right next to my speaker.

73 John
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N8UZE
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Posts: 1524




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« Reply #2 on: May 31, 2006, 01:05:34 PM »

I have this same router with a Comcast digital modem.  There have been absolutely no problems with interference or noise.
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N5NA
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Posts: 217




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« Reply #3 on: May 31, 2006, 01:18:38 PM »

I have that router.  If you use it for wireless networking I don't think you'll have a problem.  However, I think all ethernet cabling generates RFI.  I am using it for wireless as well as wired networking and it does generate RFI off the wired cabling on HF.

On 20m I get birdies about every 15 KHz.  Fortunately I only hear them when my antenna is pointed at my house.

I read on a forum that the Netgear routers were better shielded and had less RFI.  I tried one but found the RFI to be exactly the same as the Linksys.

Otherwise, the WRT54G works well.  I have had no problems with it.

73,

Alan  N5NA
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K0RFD
Member

Posts: 1368




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« Reply #4 on: May 31, 2006, 01:26:46 PM »

I have the same router.  No RFI problems that I can associate with the router or its wall wart. Much less noisy than my old wired network. I had a VERY noisy RCA/Thompson cable modem, but I took it back to the cable co. and swapped it for a Motorola.  Much less noise.

Got rid of a lot of other birdies by junking the power supplies in a couple of my computers and replacing them with FCC Class B certified supplies.

Most minor birdies I have now seem to be associated with USB stuff, in particular a certain scanner.
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K7AAT
Member

Posts: 413




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« Reply #5 on: May 31, 2006, 01:37:18 PM »


  Been running the Linksys WRT54G(1) and a number of associated Linksys wifi network adapters for two years with no sign of RFI.

   Ed  K7AAT
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N3UMH
Member

Posts: 153




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« Reply #6 on: May 31, 2006, 02:05:37 PM »

Thanks for the responses, everyone.

I am going to use a wired connection to the desktop machine but I'm going to keep the cabling short: I'm running CATV coax all the way to the desktop and the cable modem will be located there, so < 3 feet ethernet cable.  Using wireless to the laptop.

Thanks for the info... I'm going to get one, but everyone feel free to keep commenting on the RFI potential of this unit.  It's a great thing to have in the archives.

In fact, I wonder if eHam would be interested in maintaining a database of interference-generating consumer gear, severity of interference, type of interference, fixes.  It would be a fantastic resource.    

There's plenty of experience out there, and quite a bit on the web, but it's pretty scattered.

73 and thanks,
Dan
N3OX  
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K4SAV
Member

Posts: 1840




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« Reply #7 on: May 31, 2006, 06:27:23 PM »

Whether you get RFI from the Linksys box depends mostly on what antenna you are using. If you have a balanced antenna located a reasonable distance from your house you will have no problems. For example, my antennas are located 100 ft from my house.  I can't hear anything from the router, not even when adding a preamp and pointing the antenna at the house.  If I connect a single ended wire to my receiver (the other side of that antenna will be my house ground) all the bands fill up with trash from the router.  Many of the birdies are over S9.  I can hear it on 2 meters also.

So it does radiate, but at very low signal levels. It will only be a problem if your antenna is very close or has large common mode currents.

Jerry, K4SAV
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N9YB
Member

Posts: 22




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« Reply #8 on: May 31, 2006, 06:29:53 PM »

Had that exact router in the basement about 15' from the shack for 3 years.  Not one incidence of interference, even when the kids are pounding on with WiFi laptops and X-Box live going at the same time.

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N6HCM
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Posts: 17


WWW

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« Reply #9 on: June 01, 2006, 12:41:29 AM »

it doesn't help that there are at least three or four different versions of the WRT54G ... and varying firmware releases for each of those versions ...
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N3UMH
Member

Posts: 153




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« Reply #10 on: June 01, 2006, 06:31:42 AM »

True, but if it really is only the wired Ethernet that is radiating, it doesn't really matter.

100BaseT is 100BaseT...

I've heard that Shielded Cat5 helps a lot with radiating Ethernet cabling.

As for me, I have one or two birdies on 20m that I can identify with downloading large files, but that is probably the cable modem.

Dan
N3OX
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KD7EVS
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Posts: 84


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« Reply #11 on: June 09, 2006, 04:53:13 PM »

There are 4 (maybe 5 now) versions of the WRT54G plus a few spinoffs. I can't find any birdies off of any Version 4 box, not inside any ham band at least. (I have 3 or four and have tested several others).

For those that are having problems with Cat5 radiating... I will offer that store bought patch cables aren't the best quality... you'll do better if you make your own. Otherwise you can make the step to Cat6.   Cat 6 WILL NOT  RADIATE if installed correctly.

The only time I've had Cat5 radiate was when it was 40 feet of it to a POE device (power over ethernet). I replaced the power injector with my own and resolved that problem.

Seven Three
W7ATC (ex-KD7EVS)
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KG6AF
Member

Posts: 355




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« Reply #12 on: March 12, 2014, 02:35:33 PM »

I have a WRT54GL router running Tomato firmware that generates three closely-spaced spectral lines every 60kHz on 20 meters.
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WA3SKN
Member

Posts: 5475




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« Reply #13 on: March 14, 2014, 05:26:12 AM »

I have had problems with this router.  It is not the 2.4 GHZ wireless that is the issue, but the wired LAN, plastic case, and wall wart power supply that causes the interference.  I have heard that the Netgear is better in this regard, but have not yet verified it.
73s.

-Mike.
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N3DT
Member

Posts: 531




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« Reply #14 on: March 14, 2014, 06:17:37 AM »

I've had one of these sitting right on my radio desk for maybe 10 years and use it wireless and also have another computer on a 100' cable to the other end of the house. Never had any problems with rfi, but all my antennas are well away from the house.
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