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MIMO Antennas Explained!

MiMo is an acronym for "multi in multi out". Most wireless broadband modems sold these days contain MiMo technology. MiMo technology enables the device to dynamically set up many signal paths to optimise transmission and reception to the tower. When a 4G modem is used in a 4G coverage area and, if the 4G signal is strong enough, the modem will switch to MiMo mode usually resulting in higher data speed.

You can identify 4G areas by checking coverage maps of the varies carries. Different carriers refer to their 4G services by different names as follows:

Carrier (click to see coverage map) Name Coverage Map Colour Frequencies (MHz)
Telstra 4GX Green 700, 1800, 2600
Optus 4G Plus Purple 700, 1800, 2300, 2600
Vodafone 4G+ Purple 700, 850


Which antenna should I use?

In any area where the signal is weak (less than 3 bars), an antenna is highly recommended. Traditionally single antennas have been used to increase 3G however with 4G now becoming widely implemented there are more options as follows:

1. Single 3G/4G antenna connected to the primary antenna port of the modem. The primary port is generally labelled "1" or "Primary" or "Main". This will result in enhanced signal level for 3G and 4G (non MiMo).
2. Two antennas connected to the primary and secondary ports. This will generally result in enhanced signal level for 3G over and above a single antenna, particularly in edge coverage areas. This is know as "Antenna Diversity" whereby two signals are captured and then combined to produce a higher level and higher quality signal.
3. A MiMo antenna is connected to the two antenna ports via the two cables. This will result in enhanced signal level for 3G, 4G and 4G MiMo. MiMo antennas have two antenna cables and are basically "two antennas in one" where the two antenna radiators are polarised at opposite 45 degree angles to match the cell tower transmission format. The two antenna cables attach to 4G modem via it’s two antenna ports. Two patch leads are normally required. Note that most of our MiMo antennas can be configured as two 3G/4G antennas described above (2) by mounting both for vertical polarisation instead of 45 degrees.

In simple terms, MiMo antennas should be used in 4G areas where the aim is to increase the 4G signal level to a modem. Single or two antennas should be used where 3G is the priority due to the lack of or very low level 4G signal.

Check our MiMo Antenna range.