WiFi with external antenna for BBB - recommendations?

I want a WiFi adapter to use with my BBB that has an external antenna
connection. Does anyone have any suggestions or recommendations

Do generic USB Wifi adapters work OK with the BBB?


None of them offers an external aerial option as far as I can see.

Ideally I'd like to use something like one of these:-


Lafalink make a whole load of slightly different ones, all based on
the RT3070 which I guess would be supported but it would be nice to
know if someone has tried one before.

In my house i use one external like nanostation https://www.ubnt.com/airmax/nanostationm/ just plug on ethernet bbb

Gerald’s link included a reference to a USB connected WiFi unit with a removable antenna that uses SMA (probably reverse-SMA) connector.


It seems to me that if you substitute your connection for the one that comes with the unit, it would do what you want.

— Graham

I already use the similar TP-Link TL-WA7210G.

However I have a specific requirement to use a USB adapter in this
application as I need to do the WiFi authentication in the host
computer not in the remote device.

Ah, sorry, I missed that one.

Yes, it's possibly one approach but not ideal because any aerial lead
is quite lossy so you often lose in the aerial lead what you gain from
putting the aerial outside.

That's why it makes much more sense (from the point of view of
maximising the signal) to put the WiFi electronics in the box with the
aerial (so minimal tranmsission loss) and using a USB downlead to get
the information to the computer. A USB lead is no problem up to five
metres or so whereas an aerial downlead of that length will lose a
*lot* of signal.

alfa series cards will work fine

I've found:-


Are these the ones you mean? They seem to make quite a good range,
thank you.

I am not sure on what distance you are looking for but I have had good success with USB wifi adapters utilizing the RT5370 chipset (in my application I need both access point mode as well as managed mode).

I have not used this device itself but have used without the external antenna


One word of caution though, I have recently been caught out ordering RT5370 advertised devices to receive 7601 chipset devices - while I could get these to work in managed mode I have been unable to use them as an access point.


I’ve had success using the TP-Link TL-WN722N.

As far as I can tell this is identical in all respects to the TP-Link TL-WN727N in the list of supported devices, but with an external antenna.

Most adapters work. If you are just trying to connect to a network you don’t have to be picky. If you are using your BBB for hacking like I am, then you might want something like the Alfa AWUS036H.

Thanks, that's useful, though while it has an 'external' antenna it
isn't for outdoor use which is what I'm really after.

However if I can find other devices which use the same chipset it may
well help.

I'm going to try an Alfa ubdo-uv-t8 which is an outdoor device and
uses the same RTL8188 chipset as the AWUS036H.