In the world of Helium Cable, LMR cables are the gold standard. These cables come in three widely used sizes, LMR-240/400/600.
Coming in at 7.62 dBi loss at 100 feet (or .762 dBi loss at 10ft) this is a great option for installations that require under 15 ft of cable. We definitely wouldn’t recommend running over 20ft of LMR-240 because it would start to hinder your performance substantially. LMR-240 is relatively thin and can easily be installed through a vent in an attic. This Helium cable measures up to 0.24 inches in diameter.
Rated at 3.9 dBi loss at 100ft (.39 dBi loss at 10ft) this is the most popular Helium cable in the arena. This cable is a great fit for installations up to 30ft with just over 1 dBi lost. While we don’t recommend this Helium cable past lengths of 35ft, it too can fit through some attic vents but it is a thicker cable at 0.405 inches in diameter.
This is a thick cable, be mindful of tension when you connect your Hotspot as thick cables like these can damage the connector located on your Hotspot if not handled with care.
The Holy Grail of LMR cables, rated at 2.5 dBi loss at 100ft (or 0.25 dBi loss at 10ft). We’d recommend this Helium cable to anyone trying to maximize their antennas efficiency. We wouldn’t really consider using less than 10ft of it, but with 1.25 dBi loss at 50ft, this beast of a cable is ideal for people who might want to keep their hotspot under a covered area while still trying to reach great heights with their antenna. It might be too think for attic vents at 0.59 inches in diameter.
We recommend using a short pigtail connector cable when using this cable because it is so thick, you will not be able to bend it easily. We’ve attached a pigtail cable courtesy of Rokland for reference. While the signal loss on these cables is much higher than LMR cables, this won’t have a noticeable effect due to its short length.
Our Favorite LMR Vendors
At Arcadian, you can order a custom cable exactly the length you need. We found this to be very helpful for those installations requiring a long run of cable that might be in between standard lengths as to not sacrifice any additional signal strength.
RFMAX coax cables are “Professional Grade.” Our custom RF assemblies are assembled in the USA and made with only high quality materials – low loss coaxial cable and high performance RF connectors. We test 100% of our cables before shipping to ensure maximum performance for your wireless system.Arcadian
At USA Coax, you can order an LMR cable with the exact length and connector types needed just like Arcadian. Another neat feature is the ability to add custom artwork to the cable.
Times Microwave LMR® standard is a UV Resistant Polyethylene jacketed cable designed for 20-year service outdoor use. The bending and handling characteristics are significantly better than air-dielectric and corrugated hard-line cables.USA Coax
The LMR range is recognized globally as the industry standard ultra low loss, flexible, low cost, lightweight, DC – 6GHz coaxial cable solution for many RF applications. This is also backed up by the best warranty and technical support in the business.McGill Microwave Systems
Check out this Arcadian link to verify the connections on the ends of your Helium cable.
This article is part six of eight in our Master Guide to Helium Mining, click the link to learn more about how to maximize your HNT rewards.
Next up: How to Pick a Good Location