For many of us, having a dependable mobile phone service is more than a convenience; it’s a must.
Yes, the truck camper helps us to go away and relax, but many of us still work and need Internet access in order to do our tasks.
Here at Truck Camper Adventure, this is particularly true.
We like traveling out in the camper and discovering new places, but we also need a method to submit articles, share them on social media, and keep the website up to date.
Without mobile coverage, none of these things are possible.
Verizon has the strongest 4G LTE coverage of the main service providers, although there are still poor signals and coverage gaps across the western United States.
A cell signal booster may help with this.
A competent cell booster won’t be able to fill in those gaps, but it will be able to enhance weak LTE signals such that they may be utilized on your phone.
Wilson Electronics manufactures the greatest mobile cell boosters on the market today.
This is a review of the WeBoost Drive X RV Cell Booster, a brand-new product from WeBoost that replaces the popular 4G-X-RV variant.
Let’s start with a technical discussion.
Cell phones are essentially digital, full-duplex, high-speed UHF radios.
They must be within line-of-sight of a cell tower in order to communicate.
The frequencies used by cellular networks range from 700 to 894 MHz and 1700 to 2155 MHz.
Cell towers are frequently placed on mountains, big buildings, and/or tall towers since cell systems are line-of-sight.
This is done to maximize the UHF line-of-site signal’s range.
Unfortunately, mountains obstruct UHF radio waves, preventing them from traveling beyond the horizon.
However, they may penetrate forests and certain structures, but signal attenuation is common.
Hills and mountains, as well as being in the outside range of a cell tower’s signal, which is normally approximately 15 miles in the city and between 30 and 40 miles in rural regions depending on the height of the cell array, might cause a poor or no signal on your mobile phone.
A cell booster, such as the WeBoost Drive X, works by converting weak signals into ones that can be utilized on your phone.
Cell towers that are close together.
On the right, there’s a stealth array.
Table of Contents
The WeBoost Drive X RV Cell Booster was designed with recreational vehicles in mind.
Whether you’re sitting at a campground or riding down the highway, the system amplifies 3G and 4G LTE cellular signals up to 50 dBm and can handle several users at once.
The Drive X automatically optimizes and adjusts the booster’s output to deliver rock-solid connection with just a 2 amp DC power demand, thanks to omni-directional antennae and a proprietary smart technology that monitors signal conditions in and around your RV.
As a consequence, there are fewer lost calls, higher voice quality, quicker internet speeds, better streaming, and greater hotspot functionality.
The Drive X, like other WeBoost boosters, works with all U.S.
mobile carriers, including Verizon, AT&T, T-Mobile, and Sprint, and works with all cell phones, hotspots, cellular-connected tablets, and other cell devices.
From the date of purchase, the complete system is covered by a two-year warranty.
The WeBoost Drive X RV Cell Booster is priced at $499.00.
The package for the WeBoost Drive X RV.
The WeBoost Drive X RV Cell Booster comes in a huge, segmented package that includes everything you’ll need to set it up.
An inside antenna with 13 feet of RG-58 coaxial cable, an Over-The-Road (OTR) omni-directional antenna with 25 feet of RG-6 coaxial cable, antenna mast extension, spring, and side-exit adapter, ladder mounting hardware, an AC/DC Wall Power Supply, and a 12 volt Power Supply are all included in the box.
A tiny hole saw, a plastic installation cover and gasket (used only if drilling a hole in the side or rear of your camper is required), cable ties, and cable mounts are also included as installation accessories.
The partitioned box is labeled with basic stages to make an already straightforward activity much simpler to comprehend.
The Setting Up
The WeBoost Drive X RV Cell Booster installation took roughly two hours in total, not counting the preparation time.
It was simple to set up.
On a scale of one to ten, with one being the simplest and ten being the most difficult, I’d give this installation a three-star rating, but only because drilling into the camper is sometimes necessary.
The booster does not need any setup or setting; just turn it on.
Finding a suitable location to attach the OTR antenna is the most critical aspect of the installation.
Our camper came with a back ladder, which we installed here.
The booster, the second crucial component, was installed in the cabover near to the TV; more on this element of the setup later.
The most difficult aspect of the installation was choosing on the entrance site for the RG-6 coaxial wire, which normally necessitates drilling a hole in your RV, which is never fun to accomplish but is commonly necessary for systems with an outside antenna like this one.
The location of the RG-6 coaxial cable entrance point inside the camper changed for us.
The initial design called for sending the cable down the roof’s refrigerator flue to avoid drilling holes in the side or back of the camper, but we finally opted against it since we wanted to retain the majority of the RG-6 cabling inside rather than running it along the roof.
We ran the RG-6 wire via a tiny hole drilled into the camper’s rear wall that is covered beneath one of the ladder’s center support brackets to keep the pass-through inside the camper inconspicuous.
The RG-6 cable was routed inside the camper via the back wardrobe, past the kitchen ceiling cupboards, through the refrigerator flue, and into the cabover, where it ended with the mounted cell booster.
It’s crucial to think about where you’ll put the OTR and inside antennas.
This is due to the fact that antennas produce electro-magnetic fields (EMFs).
When these fields collide, oscillation ensues, causing noise that might possibly harm the booster.
Fortunately, the Drive X booster incorporates a shutdown mechanism that prevents the device from being damaged by oscillation.
The easiest strategy to avoid oscillation in the first place, though, is to increase the distance between the interior and outside antennas.
In a truck camper like ours, this is best achieved by installing the outside antenna on the back ladder and the inside antenna in the cabover, a distance of about 9 feet.
Example of a WeBoost Setup
One of the kitchen’s above cabinets has a cable line.
The wall-mounted WeBoost Drive X RV Booster.
Within 12 inches, the WeBoost Inside Antenna works well.
The power supply is another important part of the installation.
Unlike residential systems, which are powered by 110 volts AC, RVs are powered by 12 volts DC.
Not only does the WeBoost Drive X RV Cell Booster come with a power source for 110 volts AC, but it also has a power supply for 12 volts DC.
This guarantees that the unit’s power requirements are met in the event of a power outage.
Unfortunately, unlike the WeBoost Trucker version, the 12 volt power supply that arrived with the device didn’t have a 12 volt cigarette lighter-style socket on the end.
This is the only criticism we have regarding the Drive X RV components.
While some people may hard-wire the DC power source to the 12 volt fuse panel, many others will opt to utilize a 12 volt plug.
We already had a 12 volt outlet where we installed our booster, so adding a 12 volt connector on the end would’ve made things a lot easier.
We had to go to the nearby hardware shop to buy the essential plug to make the system function on DC as it was.
How Does It Work?
A decibel (dBm) value is the most accurate technique to determine the intensity of a mobile signal.
A viable LTE signal has a range of -70 dBm on the high end (good) to -119 dBm on the low end (poor) (poor).
The better the signal, the closer it is to “0.” Every 3 dB increase in signal strength doubles the signal intensity; a 20 dB increase in signal strength produces a signal that is 100 times stronger.
Unfortunately, starting with iOS 11.2, the decibel reading in “Field Test Mode” is no longer shown.
Previously, iPhone applications could access the decibel measurements in this test mode, but this is no longer possible.
For the time being, this means that iPhone owners will have to depend on the number of signal bars to decide whether or not their LTE connection has improved.
Fortunately, Android users may still do so by going to their phone’s Signal Strength or Network Type and Strength settings.
To receive decent LTE mobile service on an iPhone with Verizon, we’ve found that a signal strength of two bars is required.
We’ve found that two bars is typically the minimum for satisfactory coverage, while we can get great service with just one bar LTE on sometimes.
Signal strength, on the other hand, isn’t necessarily a reliable indicator of cell service quality.
Because there are more individuals fighting for the limited bandwidth on that tower, two bars LTE in a low population region may be preferable than three bars LTE in a large population area.
This happened to us in Forks, Washington, not long ago.
Although the LTE signal strength in town was excellent at three bars, web surfing was frustratingly sluggish owing to the one tower’s restricted capacity.
Unfortunately, a cell booster won’t be able to help if a cell tower’s bandwidth is full, but it can help turn a poor LTE signal into one that your phones and laptops can utilize.
How effective is the WeBoost Drive X RV Cell Booster? During testing with a friend’s Android, we saw a 35 to 40 dBm boost in signal strength.
On the top end, this amounts to two entire bars of 4G LTE cell signal augmentation.
As a result, the WeBoost Drive X will transform a bad one-bar LTE signal into a decent three-bar LTE signal, and a reasonable two-bar LTE signal into an exceptional four-bar LTE signal.
We even got bad service in one region where there were no bars and then one bar of functional LTE appeared.
Unfortunately, you must be within 12 inches of the inner antenna to benefit from the amplified, four-bar signal.
The antenna “is best utilized between 4-10 feet of the cellular device,” according to the instruction booklet, although this was not our experience during testing.
We usually got three bars beyond a foot and four bars inside a foot.
Fortunately, Wilson Electronics includes 13 feet of RG-58 cable, so we won’t have any trouble moving the antenna around within the camper.
The Final Word
Is the 500-dollar WeBoost Drive X RV Cell Booster worth it? That is entirely dependent on you and your requirements.
This gadget is a must-have if phone and Internet access are important to your profession.
Sure, WeBoost’s Drive X won’t function in places where cell coverage isn’t available—Billy Preston’s 1970s classic “Something from Nothing Leaves Nothing” comes to mind—but it can frequently transform weak, useless 3G and 4G LTE signals into ones that can be utilized on your phone and laptop.
Yes, the inside antenna is a little weak for our tastes, but it is powerful enough to provide us a one-bar boost while we’re in the truck’s cab, which is a significant plus for us.
So, what’s the gist of it? The device works as advertised and accomplishes its goal of boosting poor cell signals.
We can’t live without it now that we have it and use it, and that is the mark of a superb product.
This ends our WeBoost Drive X RV Cell Booster Review.
What is the WeBoost Drive X RV Cell Booster’s rating? We offer the WeBoost Drive X RV Cell Booster a five-star rating on a scale of one to five, with one being the lowest and five being the greatest.