Tech Tip–What is Gain?

weBoost | July 12, 2012

Have you ever wondered what is gain, or what is a dB? You may have thought to yourself, “why is it that when I’m looking at cell phone signal boosters like Wilson boosters, there is constantly mentions of gain/dBs? What is gain and why is it important in a signal booster?” Yea, we thought so, and no, you aren’t alone in wondering this. That’s why this week we decided to break it down for you and hopefully clear up some confusion.

In the technical sense, gain is simply the ratio of a booster’s or antenna’s output power relative to its input power. Gain is usually expressed in decibels, which are abbreviated as dB. Of course, the purpose of a signal booster and antenna is to produce (or output) more power than comes in (input).

In a practical sense, a gain value represents the relative level of signal enhancement a booster and/or antenna is capable of providing. All factors being equal, a booster with a higher gain value will provide a stronger signal and/or a larger coverage area than one with a lower gain value. You may have noticed Wilson boosters that provide the greatest gain are designed to be installed inside large buildings (like our DB Pro). Those boosters designed to provide signal coverage for smaller areas, like a single room or the inside of a vehicle, have lower gain values (like our Sleek).

Make sense? Remember, gain value is only one of the factors that needs to be considered when choosing a booster. If you are unsure whether a particular Wilson booster model will meet your specific needs, contact our Tech Support group at 1-866-294-1660 (North America), email us ([email protected]), or leave us a comment below or on Facebook/Twitter.