Is it possible to use only one antenna on a internal wifi card that takes two?

Mar 21, 2018
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So I've heard a lot of positive feedback from the Intel Dual Band Wireless AC 7260HMW WiFi-Bluetooth 4.0 and decided to buy it. I currently have the Realtek RTL8723BE which randomly disconnects, only supports 2.4GHz and uses only one antenna.

This means I either have to install a second antenna or plug in the one that's already there. Do I have to install a second antenna or will it operate fine with one?
 

BFG-9000

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Sep 17, 2016
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That's a 2x2 device and doing so will limit you to one radio, so 72/150Mbps on 2.4GHz and 433Mbps on 5GHz.

Often you can just run the extra antenna wire along the bottom innards of the laptop instead of up around the screen--that's better than no antenna.

Also consider your present antenna may not be dual-band but 2.4GHz only.
 
Mar 21, 2018
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I bought a pair of these antennas from ebay which should work fine. However, I haven't installed antennas like this before. So if I could just plug the single antenna onto the card that would be a good assurance to atleast get the wifi operational again. Two antennas with the appropriate properties would be the best solution so I'm gonna attempt to install one or two of them.
 

Cats869

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Hey, just curious how well did it went for you installing aftermarket antennas? Was wondering if you were able to do some tests.
 

dino92

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That's a 2x2 device and doing so will limit you to one radio, so 72/150Mbps on 2.4GHz and 433Mbps on 5GHz.

Often you can just run the extra antenna wire along the bottom innards of the laptop instead of up around the screen--that's better than no antenna.

Also consider your present antenna may not be dual-band but 2.4GHz only.
Hey there,
I also am in the process of upgrading my wireless network card. My main goal is for it to support 5ghz. The only two antennas compatible with my laptop (apparently) are Intel Dual Band Wireless-N 7260HMW AN and Intel Dual Band Wireless-AC 3160HMW ("HMW" part just means they're Half Mini Wireless cards).

The screenshot below is from the official guide for my HP Probook 450 G1 laptop (the cards with arrows are the ones supporting 5ghz).


Yesterday I opened my laptop's bottom cover and I saw that my laptop only has one antenna cable connected to my wireless network card. There are standard "Main" and "Aux" connectors, but only "Main" is being used. If I understand well, the "Main" is connected to WiFi+Bluetooth combo antenna, and second one (if it existed) would be connected to secondary antenna which is only for WiFi.
  1. Does that mean that I can't fully utilize 2x2 network wireless card, because I don't have secondary (aux) antenna in my laptop?
  2. Could this be the reason why my Bluetooth and WiFi have problems working at the same time? Maybe if I had both antennas, when using both Bluetooth and WiFi, the main one would take over the Bluetooth duties, and second one would be used for WiFi, while now the same antenna is used for same thing, which makes them interfere with each other, since they are on the same frequency?
  3. You say is it possible that the antenna can't "catch" 5ghz signal. Is there a way to find out whether my antenna is dual band or not (like reading some label printed on it which would discover its specs, or something similar)?
  4. I found those 2 cards (first and second) in AliExpress' fenvi store, which apparently is a reputable Chinese 3rd party manufacturer of network gear. But it says below that it's not compatible with HP laptops. What could be the possible reason to not be compatible, when it clearly says in support for my manual that these are supported network cards? Could it be because they're 3rd party manufacturer not complied with HP, or because they are customized in some way? Or simply because they write "not compatible with HP" just to be safe, because HP is notorious for its strictness when it comes to BIOS not allowing unrecognized NICs?
 

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