Case hardware request/idea
#1
Some of us live in remote and or mountainous areas with poor to no signal strength for 2g,3g,4g and gps Im wondering if a case could be made that has an extra battery/batteries and external antenna ports for powered higher strength antennas. Im also wondering if the 6 gold breakout pins in the back would be sufficient for such a modular case.
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#2
The six pins on the back can be used for an extra battery - and will be in the keyboard case which is hoped to be in the store later this month. The 2g/3g/4g antenna is already using a coax connector (UFL I think) so changing to a better antenna should be easy. The GPS antenna is trickier but I think there have been a couple of attempts, one soldering a coax cable to the board in place of the sprung contacts, and another enlarging the existing printed antenna with some aluminium tape.
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#3
(09-12-2021, 03:59 AM)wibble Wrote: The six pins on the back can be used for an extra battery - and will be in the keyboard case which is hoped to be in the store later this month. The 2g/3g/4g antenna is already using a coax connector (UFL I think) so changing to a better antenna should be easy. The GPS antenna is trickier but I think there have been a couple of attempts, one soldering a coax cable to the board in place of the sprung contacts, and another enlarging the existing printed antenna with some aluminium tape.

Im assuming that keyboard is detected as a usb rather than serial device is this the case? If so any usb capable gps or lte antenna could be incorperated and utilize the break out pins then.
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#4
i2c is the only data connection available on the pogo pins. The keyboard is an i2c device.

You could connect a USB device using the usb dock. https://pine64.com/product/pinephone-usb-c-docking-bar/
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#5
(09-12-2021, 07:06 AM)HobanWashburn Wrote:
(09-12-2021, 03:59 AM)wibble Wrote: The six pins on the back can be used for an extra battery - and will be in the keyboard case which is hoped to be in the store later this month. The 2g/3g/4g antenna is already using a coax connector (UFL I think) so changing to a better antenna should be easy. The GPS antenna is trickier but I think there have been a couple of attempts, one soldering a coax cable to the board in place of the sprung contacts, and another enlarging the existing printed antenna with some aluminium tape.

Im assuming that keyboard is detected as a usb rather than serial device is this the case? If so any usb capable gps or lte antenna could be incorperated and utilize the break out pins then.

No - see https://wiki.pine64.org/wiki/PinePhone#Pogo_pins - it's only power and i2c on those pins. Even if it did have USB you can't attach an antenna that way. It would have to go to one of the antenna connections that I mentioned on the main PCB. The sprung antenna contacts connect to the printed antennae near the top corners of the inner frame - they aren't the same as the 6 pogo pins.
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#6
There are band transponder boosters, pretty much applies a LNA across a whole bandpassed cellular band(think like the LNB you receive with in your satellite dish) and output a weak amplified signal in your house. You could try to make one or they are about $100 and work pretty well though sometimes a nearby cell will freak over the received signal fake 'echo' it makes. Works better with a good on-band dish or yaggi antenna pointed at the tower on the receive side.
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