Wi-Fi has been standard issue on laptops for many years now, but the internal antennae used to connect to a network (usually built into the laptop lid) are seldom sensitive enough to latch onto a weak signal — which is often the only kind available on the fringes of a campsite.

Wi-Fi has been standard issue on laptops for many years now, but the internal antennae used to connect to a network (usually built into the laptop lid) are seldom sensitive enough to latch onto a weak signal — which is often the only kind available on the fringes of a campsite.

One solution for a weak Wi-Fi signal is an external antenna mounted to the side or roof of the van, but few laptops have the necessary antenna socket to connect this to. Which is where the new Solwise NET-WL USB Catcher comes in.

The USB Catcher consists of a USB Wi-Fi adapter ‘dongle’ that connects to a laptop’s USB port and is used instead of its onboard Wi-Fi (and works in essentially the same way). The adapter supports 2.4GHz 802.11n Wi-Fi for faster connections than 802.11b/g adapters, though it will still work with those slower networks.

The key, however, is that the dongle also has a connection for an external Wi-Fi antenna and comes with a 4.5m lead with a weatherproof N-type connector that attaches to an antenna outside the van.

A Wi-Fi antenna isn’t supplied, but Solwise has a range of models with prices starting from under a tenner. The USB Catcher costs £32.44.

[Solwise]

Share with friends

Follow us on

Most recent motorhome reviews

The Practical Motorhome Bürstner Lyseo t 744 review – 1 - The 2017 Bürstner Lyseo t 744 is 7.49m (24
The Practical Motorhome Moto-Trek X-Cite EB review – 1 - The slide-out takes the X-Cite EB's overall width to 2.7 metres and it is operated easily by just flicking the switch above the settee (© Practical Motorhome)
The Practical Motorhome Chausson Welcome 611 Travel Line review – 1 - This Fiat Ducato-based four-berth packs a lot into its 6.96m length (© Lizzie Pope/Practical Motorhome)
The Practical Motorhome Shire Phoenix ML Black Edition review – 1 - This 3500kg MTPLM ’van lives up to its name, but Shire Conversions can do it in other colours (© Nick Harding/Practical Motorhome)
The Practical Motorhome Bailey Autograph 79-4 review – 1 - The 7.79m-long Autograph 79-4 is the only model in this line-up of Bailey motorhomes with an island-bed layout (© Practical Motorhome)
The Practical Motorhome Elddis Accordo 120 review – 1 - The Peugeot Boxer-based Elddis Accordo 120 has an MTPLM of 3300kg (© Niall Hampton/Practical Motorhome)