First Experience, poor range


The Things Network User

Posted on 06-02-2020

As a telecom architect and electronic engineer I thought I'd have a good look at LoraWan. I've been watching many videos on YouTube, mainly mobilefish and Andreas Spiess who have posted great content. Andreas holds the world record for the longest LoraWan transmission. Now from my own experience, I’m struggling to get anywhere near Andreas range.

I’ve built a GW based on a RaspberryPi and a Hope RF95x module. I’ve also made two Lora nodes. One is an Arduino Uno and RF95x, the other is a self contained Lora 32 module with OLED. Everything appears to be working fine, but the range is terrible. I’m getting about 1 mile. To diagnose if the problem is node or GW I drive to Durham to make use of the outdoor GW and see how far my nodes would reach. Again only about 1 mile. I’ve changed spreading factor to 10, no difference. Changed antennas to a 5dBi again no change. Looking at the RSSI on the GW, levels look good at close range, so I’d expect good RSSI figures at greater ranges.

So I’m now at a loss as to why I’m experiencing such short ranges and wondered if any of you guys have had any experience with achieving good range?