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The Results

The true trial to any modification is to see if it actually helps or hinders a devices operation. So, we went to work and put the antenna to the test. In order to do this, we used AirMagnet's wireless monitoring program, which includes numerous tools that allow a user to detect and monitor network signal strength vs. noise, utilization, etc. For our purposes, we wanted to see how well the newly modified PSP compared to a factory standard PSP.

The following are two screen shots of AirMagnet showing the results of the upgrade. On the left side you can see that both devices are connected to an access point by the name of Linksys (default settings for this test). The modified PSP is listed as Sony:53:A4:4F and the original is listed as Sony:53:5E:38. On the upper right side you can see the signal strength, as indicated by the yellow line. Basically, the higher the yellow line on the graph, the stronger the signal.

Figure 6

Figure 6: Original PSP

Figure 7

Figure 7: Modified PSP

These two screen shots clearly illustrate the stronger strength of the modified PSP. As you can see, the upgrade caused the yellow strength line to jump up to the next level. For those who understand the Signal/Noise ration, the new antenna added about 12 dB. The following lists the signal, noise, and SNR values for your enjoyment.

PSP

Signal

Noise

SNR

Original

-68 dBm

-95 dBm

27 dB

Modified

-56 dBm

-95 dBm

39 dB

Of note, look closely at the original PSP graph. For some reason the signal value continues to degrade the longer the device is operating. In addition, the spikes in the chart are a bit disturbing because they represent a complete loss of signal. Interestingly, there is nothing wrong with the upgraded model (once I properly seated the U.FL connector).

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