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Old 11-17-2018, 09:49 PM   #1
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Wifi, HDTV, Cell reception,

Just placed a deposit on a Escape 21. Now the build any thoughts on Wifi systems, TV antenna's, Cell boosters. I have not talked to anyone at Escape yet. Do they offer anything or will they install something I might purchase. Thanks for the help.
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Old 11-17-2018, 10:18 PM   #2
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I had ETI install my cellphone booster antenna in the overhead cabinet just aft of the fridge on my 21; reason was the cord routing was easy and I could easily change the antenna should it get broken/bent. Reinforced the wall between the closet and nightstand so I could hang the TV there; have a swivel mount to watch it in both ends of the trailer.
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Old 11-18-2018, 01:57 AM   #3
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We purchased and shipped a Truckers Antenna to ETI for Installation. The WeBoost cradle is in the upper cabinet, above the driver’s side drawer stack of our 21. Most of the time we get good WiFi reception with just the Jetpack, but when in remote areas, the Jetpack in the WeBoost cradle is always excellent!
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Old 11-18-2018, 06:56 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Clark View Post
We purchased and shipped a Truckers Antenna to ETI for Installation. The WeBoost cradle is in the upper cabinet, above the driver’s side drawer stack of our 21. Most of the time we get good WiFi reception with just the Jetpack, but when in remote areas, the Jetpack in the WeBoost cradle is always excellent!
Sadly, Linda has told me no more after market antenna installs. Hope we are wrong.
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Old 11-18-2018, 07:40 AM   #5
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Most cg's have wi/fi and cable, so a tv ready option is all you would need. Boondocking means no tv signals and sparse cell phone reception. One or the other, your choice.....
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Old 11-18-2018, 07:59 AM   #6
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Whatever you do, don't plan on using free WiFi in campgrounds. Most generally it's awful, especially during bad weather and everyone is trying to use it. This is a case you get exactly what you pay for. During my big trip, I found the best wifi in campgrounds were the ones I paid a nominal fee ($2 for 24 hours) and received a random access password. And even that wasn't as good as I had hoped.
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Old 11-18-2018, 09:09 AM   #7
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We went with the coax cable only for the TV. Hope if we someday add a cell phone booster that it can be plugged into the TV cable, and all we would have to do is install the antenna. The complete systems are expensive for a someday we might need application.
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Old 11-18-2018, 10:19 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by cdmixer View Post
Just placed a deposit on a Escape 21. Now the build any thoughts on Wifi systems, TV antenna's, Cell boosters. I have not talked to anyone at Escape yet. Do they offer anything or will they install something I might purchase. Thanks for the help.
We bought the Jack TV antenna and found that where there were TV signals available, it was a pretty good picture quality (we have a 12V HDTV), probably better than your average campground cable, which we found is mostly standard definition only. However, IMHO the quality of most network TV shows in the evenings can be pretty low, so we found that it was better to take a small dvd player (or other source of digital movies ) for when you are inside during inclement weather or long dark evenings and want some additional entertainment options. As Donna Dee noted above, unless you can find your own source of data, or the campground has recently upgraded its wifi to something with better bandwidth, internet based options such as Netflix are generally impossible and not worth pursuing, unless there is a campground maybe running a premium wifi service, which comes with a cost, but then at least its an option.
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Old 11-18-2018, 10:26 AM   #9
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Thank you for the replies.
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Old 11-18-2018, 10:45 AM   #10
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In the past, we have had good luck with the predecessor of this model in very remote locations. Of course, if there is no signal to boost, no matter what you have won't help. 5 x 0 is still 0.

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B073V5S3T7...v_ov_lig_dp_it


Like the OP, I'm still thinking through just how to install the magnetic based antenna on the roof of a 21'. Previously I just used double stick tape to attach a metal ground plane to the roof surface. Thats the easy part. Now I need to get the antenna lead inside. On a previous RV, I was able to snake the antenna lead down through the roof mounted exhaust vent. Similar to the MaxxAir. The cable was thin enough to just fit between the fan blade and the housing around the blade without the blade cutting the wire. Whether I'll be able to do the same on the Escape 21 time will tell.

The other issue I'm researching is whether or not, crawling around on the roof is OK. Using the search function on the forum yields answers from 'no' to 'maybe' to 'yes'. I've sent an e-mail to ETI asking for their official opinion about me, 200#, sitting on the roof working on the MaxxFan.

Any ideas about getting the antenna wire inside would be appreciated.

Thanks

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Old 11-18-2018, 11:06 AM   #11
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We always get a 12v tv that has built in DVD and carry movies for those rainy nights without tv.
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Old 11-18-2018, 11:17 AM   #12
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Any ideas about getting the antenna wire inside would be appreciated.

Thanks

Ed
Used a truckers antenna like in post #3 as it has the built-in ground plane (see the 3 radial spikes) and the wire comes directly out the bottom. Mounted it just behind the roof fridge vent so the entry is into the upper cabinet; figured the fridge vent itself afforded some protection against low hanging limbs. The built-in ground plane provides isolation so that our booster is directly under the antenna with no feedback issues.
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Old 11-18-2018, 12:14 PM   #13
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We always get a 12v tv that has built in DVD and carry movies for those rainy nights without tv.
All the 12V tvs I could find with built-in DVD players will only deliver Standard Definition (720p) and won't play Blu-Ray, so I picked up a really small Smart DVD player that we also take when traveling outside the US. Upconverts to 1080 with HDMI output and has a built-in LAN for streaming where decent WIFI is available. Cost about $60.


https://www.bestbuy.com/site/sony-bd...E&gclsrc=aw.ds
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Old 11-18-2018, 12:50 PM   #14
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Used a truckers antenna like in post #3 as it has the built-in ground plane (see the 3 radial spikes) and the wire comes directly out the bottom. Mounted it just behind the roof fridge vent so the entry is into the upper cabinet; figured the fridge vent itself afforded some protection against low hanging limbs. The built-in ground plane provides isolation so that our booster is directly under the antenna with no feedback issues.
The fridge 'chimney' is a solid idea. Plus the antenna wire would wind up just where I want the booster to live. Once before I came down the chimney and drilled a hole through the partition to use to feed a wire from the chimney to the inside. That way I don't have to poke a hole through the basic fiberglass shell.

I'll likely go with this antenna.

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00KY4Q7DG...v_ov_lig_dp_it

It does require a metal ground plane, but that's easy enough. The radial spikes on the Trucker are fragile and easily broken by branches. I've hit branches before but with a magnetic base antenna it simply gets knocked over and not broken.

Thanks for the fridge chimney reminder. A very easy solution; my favorite type.

Plus that means no climbing on the roof.
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Old 11-18-2018, 03:08 PM   #15
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Most cg's have wi/fi and cable, so a tv ready option is all you would need.
In some areas, and some types of campgrounds (or "RV resorts"), cable TV is - or was - common. I can't remember the last time that I saw a cable hookup, other than in places that offer by-the-month seasonal spaces.

Campground WiFi is nice when you can get it, but often a joke. We were in one place that was listed as having WiFi and when I saw zero signal at our site I checked with the office, where they explained that the WiFi only worked in the immediate vicinity of one central building.
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Old 11-18-2018, 03:15 PM   #16
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TV, Internet, etc.

Over the past 15 years of RVing, we have struggled with these same issues. My experience suggests the following to be true: RV park Wi-fi is seldom usable for anything more that checking email and occasional browsing and usually it's useless in the late afternoon and evening when fellow RVers are trying to do the same; RV park cable TV usually has a limited selection of SD stations (no HDTV) and there is frequently interference on the signal; OTA TV in some locations is good with a wide variety of stations avalable in HD and in other locations there are a limited number of stations or none at all; the bigger the city where one camps, the greater the likelihood of having good OTA TV; 4G LTE cellphone reception is usually good in every other location except where we camp;

So what to do for TV:
+Bring a laptop with a DVD player installed and HDMI output and connect it to your TV via HDMI cable.
+Use your cellphone or a mi-fi device as a wi-fi hot spot and connect a Roku player, Firestick, or Chromcast device to it for streaming video. Streaming uses large amounts of data so be aware of this. Check your network speed with an app like Speedcheck to see if you have enough bandwidth for streaming.
+You may need to install some type of cellphone signal booster to achieve a better signal in a remote location. ETI will no longer install customer supplied cellphone booster antennas at customer request. I asked and got a definitive NO.
+Watch TV using and app like DISH Anywhere or HBO Go on your cellphone and connect the phone via HDMI cable to TV. You need a strong 4G LTE signal for this to work well.
+Watch RV park cable TV. I have noteda recent trend for RV parks now is to discontinue offering CATV of any type. As a rough guess, we were on the road for about 7 weeks last summer and it was about 50/50 for campground CATV. Watch sports, weather and local news on SD RV park cable, stream Netflix for entertainment, or:
+Get a Dish Tailgater type device or Sat TV antenna, bring a receiver from home and watch HDTV from your Sat provider. If you want to pursue this option, make sure ETI installs appropriate wiring for this with an external coax connector.

What to do for Internet:
If RV park wi-fi Internet is good, use it and compliment the owners for providing this important service. You might want to use a VPN if it will make you will feel more comfortable doing your banking or shopping. Proton Mail and WhatsApp are fully encrypted end to end so they can be used for private communications.

If RV park wi-fi is not good but you have strong 4G LTE service on your cell, use the cell as a modem for your laptop. Pray the 5G rollout gets going.

If neither options works out, then:
Go to Starbucks, MacDonalds, Panera Bread, Dunkin Donuts,
Whole Foods, Barnes and Noble for wi-fi. Public libraries, airports, most large grocery stores, some highway rest areas have wi-fi.

Another option for those who stay at one location like over the winter in the Southwest that may work if there is campground cable TV to your trailer- see if it is possible to get a Internet cable modem (at your expense) from the local cable. This has worked for us at three different RV parks in southern CA and AZ. It never hurts to ask.

I'm sure there are other solutions and work-arounds for TV and Internet access and I hope to learn about them in this thread.
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