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Inseego 5G Wavemaker FX2000 External Antenna Guide

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Looking to get the best possible data rates from your Inseego FX2000?

You’ll want to purchase and connect external MIMO antennas to the device’s four TS9 ports.

In this guide, we'll:

  • Recommend the best external antennas to use
  • Show where the TS9 ports are located.
  • Explain how to aim the antennas for best results.

Note: The Inseego 5G Wavemaker FX2000 ONLY supports bands B42, B48, and n78 for use with external antennas. Consult your carrier for their support of these bands prior to purchasing any external antenna equipment.

In this guide

The Best External Antennas For the Inseego FX2000

Using a MIMO antenna outside your building, pointed at the nearest tower, can help you get the fastest LTE data rates possible.

The Inseego FX2000 has four TS9 ports on the side, which allow for a 2x2 MIMO or 4x4 MIMO antenna to be connected to the device.

We recommend two different MIMO antenna options for use with the Inseego FX2000:

Best For Most Users

This MIMO panel antenna kit will provide meaningful signal improvement, even if you're surrounded by trees, hills, or tall buildings.

For most users the best external antenna choice for the Inseego FX2000 is our MIMO panel antenna kit. This antenna doesn’t require line-of-sight to the tower.

Best With Line Of Sight

These cross polarized log periodic antennas are have higher gain and are more directional, but work best if you have direct line-of-sight to the tower.

However, if you have line of sight to the nearest tower, we recommend using a MIMO log periodic antenna kit instead. This uses four antennas and enables 4x4 MIMO performance, which can often increase your data speeds. The higher gain on these antennas can also get you better performance, but only when you have a straight shot to the tower.

Why External Antennas Are Critical for Improving Data Rates

There's one big misconception about external antennas.

Most people think that external antennas primarily help you increase your data rates by increasing the signal strength but that's not the case.

An increase in signal strength is often a less important way that external antennas help.

Here are the two main ways that external antennas help you increase your data rates:

1.They Improve Signal Quality

In 4G LTE and 5G networks, signal quality is measured as SINR (Signal to Interference plus Noise Ratio) or sometimes as RSRQ (Reference Signal Received Quality).

Improving signal quality has a huge impact on your data rates.

Higher data rates allow your hotspot to communicate using "higher order modulation schemes." That means they can use the same wireless spectrum to send more data per second.

However, there's one big caveat: In order to improve your signal quality, you need to both aim and shield your outdoor antenna properly. We talk more about this in the next section.

2.They Increase Your Signal Strength

As you might expect, using outdoor directional antennas can help increase the signal strength.

This helps increase data rates, but only up to a point.

If your signal strength (called "RSRP" in LTE and 5G networks) is stronger than about -100 dBm, stronger signal won't speed up your connection any further.

Positioning and Aiming MIMO Antennas

Positioning and aiming MIMO antennas well is crucial to getting the best performance from your Inseego FX2000, or indeed any other hotspot.

We've actually compiled a detailed instruction manual to accompany our own MIMO Antenna Kits, where we go into depth on the best ways to aim the antennas.

The goal is to find the best location and direction for the antenna(s), to maximize data rates to the Inseego FX2000. It can take a little patience, but can have a huge impact – it’s worth a bit of extra effort!

Before getting started, it's always a good idea to run a couple of speed tests indoors from a device connected to your Inseego FX2000's WiFi. The results will fluctuate a little, but this is the baseline you're trying to improve.

TS9 adapters connected to the Inseego FX2000

TS9 adapters connected to the Inseego FX2000

Now connect the MIMO antennas to your Inseego FX2000 via the four TS9 ports hidden under the two external antenna tabs labeled "1" and "2" and go outside with your "test-rig".

  • Note: If you have a 2x2 MIMO Antenna Kit, you will only connect your adapters to the two TS9 ports hidden under the left tab labeled "1".

With each location and direction you try, run a couple speed tests, and make a note of the results. Here are all the locations and directions where we recommend testing your MIMO antenna:

Where to test your signal

Where to test your signal

Pro tip: Don’t just go to the highest point of the roof! While signal is generally stronger the higher you go, there’s also often more interference. We’ve found it’s often better to mount the antenna(s) on the side of the building where the structure can shield the antennas from interference.

Once you've found the position which gets you the highest data rates to the Inseego FX2000, that's where you'll want to install the MIMO antenna. Go ahead and mount the antenna, run cables inside, connect everything up, and enjoy superior data rates!

Inseego Wavemaker FX2000 Technical Specifications

Note: The Inseego 5G Wavemaker FX2000 ONLY supports bands B42, B48, and n78 for use with external antennas.

Supported Cellular Bands

  • Wavemaker FX2000 for T-Mobile
    • Supported T-Mobile bands (for external antenna use)
      • 4G LTE: B48
    • Supported T-Mobile bands (for internal antenna use only)
      • 4G LTE: B2, B4, B5, B12, B25, B26, B41, B46, B48, B66, B71
      • 5G: n2, n25, n41, n66, n71
  • Wavemaker FX2000 & Pro FX2000e (Unlocked)
    • Supported Cellular bands (for external antenna use)
      • 4G LTE: B42, B48
      • 5G: n78
    • Supported 4G LTE bands (for internal antenna use only)
      • AT&T: B2, B4, B5, B12, B14, B17, B29, B30, B46, B66
      • Verizon: B2, B4, B5, B13, B48, B66
      • T-Mobile: B2, B4, B5, B12, B25, B26, B41, B66, B71
      • Other: B1, B3, B7, B8, B11, B18, B19, B20, B21, B28, B32, B38, B39, B40, B42, B46
    • Supported 5G bands (for internal antenna use only)
      • AT&T: n5
      • Verizon: n2, n5, n40, n66
      • T-Mobile: n41, n71
      • Other: n1, n3, n7, n8, n12, n25, n28, n38, n40, n46, n48, n77, n78, n79, n83

Note: Please consult your carrier to verify these bands are supported and available at your location prior to purchasing any external cellular antenna equipment.

Cellular Modem

  • Model: Qualcomm Snapdragon x55
  • MIMO Support: 4X4 w/ internal antennas, 4X4 w/ external antennas
  • LTE Performance Category: CAT 20 for FX2000 (T-Mobile), CAT 22 for FX2000/FX2000e (Unlocked)

Wi-Fi

  • Technologies: WiFi 6 - 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac/ax
  • Bands: Simultaneous 2.4 GHz and 5.0 GHz

Ports

  • Cellular Antenna Ports: 4x TS9
  • SIM (4FF Nano) Ports: 1x SIM for FX2000, 2x SIM for FX2000e
  • Other Ports: 1x 1 Gbps LAN; 1x USB 3.1 Type C

What are the differences between the Wavemaker (FX2000) and Wavemaker Pro (FX2000e)?

The key difference between these two Wavemaker models is that the Wavemaker Pro has "Dual SIM" support for (2) Nano 4FF SIM cards. This allows the Wavemaker Pro to have multi-carrier support with auto-switching.

Other Helpful Resources

Inseego 5G Wavemaker Pro FX2000 Announcement Video

Inseego Product Pages for the Wavemaker FX2000 series

Wavemaker FX2000 (T-Mobile) Documentation

Wavemaker FX2000 (Unlocked) Documentation

Wavemaker Pro FX2000e (Unlocked) Documentation

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