3 GHz flat panel SM

Is C036045C014A still an active P/N, or is it being phased out? Checking 3 distributor websites the stock status is basically call, call, and no such P/N.

We mostly use 450b but occasionally due to aesthetics or some tree issues I wonder whether to use the flat panel. I only have 1 left, so if they are deprecated or going EOL, I’ll save it as a spare in case we have a field failure.

These devices could still be available somewhere in the channel, but you are correct. Cambium is no longer selling them. They use the same radio inside as the original 450 SMs which are also discontinued.

We do, however, continue to sell the 450i flat panel, which will perform essentially the same as that of the 450b. (Granted this device is a bit more expensive.) This would be part C030045C002A.

Matt, thanks for the info.

Yeah, I bought one of the 450i panels a couple years back by mistake, still have it. Definitely expensive, also it takes a 48V POE which is just asking for an oops. I seem to remember it had some kind of special filter for adjacent channel interference or something.

Does this mean the classic SM is also EOL? Like C036045C003A?

There needs to be an option with less antenna gain than the 450b high gain, for customers at 1 mile or less. If the bare SM has gone away, then at least something like a 450b mid gain.

Purposely mis-aiming a high gain SM to avoid too hot a signal is not an acceptable solution from an interference management standpoint and not something I would condone as a CPI. It would also be prone to the next tech visit re-aiming it properly. There’s also the issue of explaining to the customer why he needs this big honking dish when the tower is half a mile away and he can see we used this little antenna at his neighbor’s house when we did their install a couple years ago.

Yes, that’s correct. The original 450 SM is no longer available for 3 GHz.

I agree with you Ken… we would really like to do something in this area. While we don’t have a formal program underway at this time, we are always looking for a way to get things moving toward a solution like this. Rather than the mid-gain, I am leaning toward a “retro” type of solution.

Do you have any opinion on which you’d rather see in 3 GHz (between a mid-gain or a retro)?

Either would be OK. As long as it is small and light enough to mount on fascia and look OK on the front of someone’s house. The main thing is the high gain is overkill for less than 1 to 1.5 miles, we actually start seeing signal levels at the SM in the 30’s.

I don’t think the retro form factor so it can go in a reflector dish is that big a deal in 3 GHz. We took advantage of that because we converted all our 2.4 FSK to 3 GHz, but that’s done now. We had a much bigger deployed base of 5 GHz with reflector dishes.

The built-in articulating mount of the mid gain is a plus, although if it’s light enough we can use the Zirkel Wireless articulating plastic mounts to accomplish that. The original 3 GHz SM was kind of heavy for that, though.

I’m not a huge fan of the asymmetric antenna pattern on the mid gain, we have a lot of trouble with multipath out here in flat farmland and a wide vertical pattern is not a good thing. Not a huge factor on the short links. If it was up to me, a little dish like the CLIP but integral would be nice. Maybe we were the only WISP in the world that actually liked the CLIPs. Customers like flat panels, the diamond shaped ones you see on some LTE and WiMAX CPEs are popular, but I assume a panel will always be significantly more expensive.

If nothing’s in the pipeline now, I’d vote for whatever is quickest and least expensive. Seems like that would probably be something based on the 450b mid gain.

I have a tech who keeps asking if we can just use the feedtube from a high gain (nope), or if you could just put a smaller dish on it (probably not). Whatever you do, it should be compatible with a 32V POE, it should have an IP55 style cable entry not the IP67 gland, and either a 6 pin tone alignment port or preferably a headphone jack like the 450b.

I think the ePMP Force 300-19 form factor is ideal. I’d like to see more low-cost panels like this one. A nice square shape and reasonable adjustment on a small mount. Houses are mostly rectangular… so a square panel blends a bit better than a large circle.