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Piss-poor AirPort reception on PowerBook G4

Discussion in 'PowerPC Macs' started by ElectroGhandi, Jun 26, 2009.

  1. macrumors regular


    We finally got cable internet after switching from dial up and we got a Wi-Fi router. Well the router is like 20 feet from where I use my PowerBook and it struggles to keep 2 bars of AirPort reception!! It's not the greatest router, but my PDA phone is getting 4 out of 5 bars and my iBook gets 3. What can I do?
  2. macrumors 68040


    If it's hardware related, the only thing I could think of would be to check if the antenna is connected properly, but that requires almost a full tear down.

    Have you tried changing the channel of the router first?
  3. macrumors regular


  4. macrumors 68040


    Hold up, I was mid-edit after I saw what model you had listed in your sig!
  5. macrumors 604


    PowerBooks have pretty bad AirPort reception because the case is made of metal. They have the antennas on either side of the display where it is plastic, although the metal around it cuts out a lot of the possible range. That is why the iBook and your PDA get better reception. You could check around the router for interference from wireless phones, microwaves, etc. although if you want the PowerBook to get the best signal you'll most likely have to get a router with a larger range such as a wireless N router.
  6. macrumors regular

    I have to ask... are you having trouble with your wireless on your Powerbook or is the number of bars the only problem?

    I have a PB G4 1.67 and it often only has 2 bars, but I don't have connectivity problems.

    At one time I did have a problem connecting to my Linksys WRT54G. At the time it was sitting on top of a metal PC compuer case. I moved it and the reception was much better -- basically, it could be an interference issue when corrected will improve reception for all your devices.
  7. macrumors 65816


    The only time I've ever had poor reception on my PowerBook was after I'd torn it down for a cleaning and put it all back together. Just a few feet from the base station, it was struggling to hold onto one bar. I popped out the battery and sure enough, the antenna wasn't snapped in all the way. Popped it back in, and I'm back to my normal great reception. It's a great deal more of a PITA in the 15" PowerBook, but do check it.

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