Lift your skinny fists in joy, this week’s EYE ON NPI are the ProAnt’s OnBoard mini antenna – cool 3D stamped antennas with out-sized gain and range.
There’s a good chance you’re working on a project with 2.4 GHz wireless. Whether it’s WiFi, Bluetooth, ZigBee, 802.15.4, Thread, or any other 2.4 GHz ISM band project, a good antenna will let you get the most out of your project (literally!).
With wireless designs, a ton of your power is going out the antenna. Compared to the microcontroller section, which maybe is a few mA draw, the radio section will draw tens or hundreds of mA. If your design is battery powered, you’ll want to squeeze as much lifetime out, which means carefully regulating the transmission power. But, if you’re just going to be losing half your power to the antenna, it’s an easy place to add improvement! If your antenna is 10 or 20% more efficient, you’ll need that much less power to reach the device on the other side.
Thus, we were excited to see Digi-Key stocking the ProAnt stamped antenna series, including the new PRO-OB-607 a smaller version, for 2.4 GHz projects. You might be thinking: “Hmm, ProAnt, that sounds familiar, where have I heard or seen that before?” And the answer is- probably in a lot of development boards you already own! For example, the popular Raspberry Pi Zero W has a ProAnt licensed antenna on it – a special resonant design that uses only passive components and a special PCB layout.
Or maybe you’ve got a uBlox BLE or WiFi module, you’ll notice that many of them use ProAnt stamped antennas – there’s one on the back of our PyPortal Pynt. They’re also seen on many ESP32 boards, including the official ‘pico’ reference design development board from Espressif.
These antennas are super small, easy to pick and place, and have much better performance, gain and range than a simple PCB antenna. They’re also really affordable! For the same price as a ceramic antenna, you’ll get up to -1.9dB / 65% efficiency. That translates to more battery power, better user experience and simple integration. There’s also an eval board with SMA-to-antenna conversion if you want to get started with fast testing.
Digi-Key has thousands of the PRO-OB-607 in stock right now for immediate shipping as well as lots more ProAnt antennas in various sizes. Pick the one that fits your enclosure best, to make your wireless project shine! Order a few PRO-OB-607 antennas today and you can integrate it into your product tomorrow morning.
See this at Digi-Key https://www.digikey.com/short/4fdz8m42
See the ProAnt video: