MAX BR1 Pro Antenna Connections - Which Ports for separate 2x2 MIMO antennas

I’m considering replacing the Verizon 8800 Jetpack in our RV with a MAX BR1 Cat-20. I currently have two separate Proxicast high-gain omnidirectional antennas on the roof of the RV. My primary usage is camping in Pacific NW national forest areas with limited coverage. I have decent performance on Verizon band 13 with this setup, but want to improve the performance by going to 4x4 MIMO and have the ability to include Starlink. Long term I’ll probably install a 4x4 MIMO panel or just add two more Proxicst antennas to the roof.

In the short term I could connect the existing antennas, but which ports should I connect to? I also have a Netgear 2x2 panel antenna that I could connect that would outperform the stock paddle antennas. Is it arbitrary, or are there port assignments that will result in optimized performance when using two different antennas across the four ports?

On the BR1 5G (GH model) the two “main” ports are A+D. Not sure about the CAT20 version.

In the current firmware there is no ability to set a 4x4 device to only use 2 antennas in the GUI. I’ve heard that is coming in 8.3. In the mean time a ticket to support they can manually put your device into 2 antenna mode.

8.3 should come out in the next few months.

Ultimately you’re gonna wanna have 4 antennas. Download performance will be significantly better.

Hi Tim,

Good move there. on stepping up/away from a “MiFi” device. Some family members of mine decided they would sell their homes and “boondock” for a while. Both signed up for the same exact Verizon post-paid plan. Streaming, email, web browsing and WiFi calling from their T-Mobile phones when no service available were the primary use cases for them.

RV # 1 has a MAX BR1 Mini LTEA (CAT 6 LTE Radio) with the Peplink Mobility 20G antenna (

RV # 2, went with a Netgear Nighthawk M1 (MR1100, CAT 16 LTE Radio) connected to their built-in Wineguard antenna.

In all areas they traveled in the Western states (starting off in OR) RV # 1 had better signal acquisition and performance. Like you, they were mostly getting lower spectrum - BAND 13 and where available BAND 5. Some areas the Nighthawk would not connect at all whereas the BR1 Mini would. RV #1 also now has Starlink for RV mixed in.

The BR1 Pro CAT 20 is an excellent device. There is also the Br1 Pro 5G which is both mid-Band 5G and CAT 20 4G. The MSRP delta between 5G and the CAT 20 only is roughly $150. So if you are looking to “future proof” the 5G version may be a better choice. Though both may be overkill, depending on your extended use case.

Both pair well with either Mobility 40G or Mobility 42G (omni-directional) however those antennas have the highest gain in the upper Frequency ranges whereas the Maritime 40G is a more balanced gain across the ranges but slightly higher VSWR in the range you’d be operating in. If you have an appetitive for per site adjustments (turning antenna(s) towards tower) and watching the readings while logged into the Peplink router, the IoT 20G (directional) would be a good choice for its higher gain in the both the lower and upper frequencies. Would need 2 x of the IoT 20G for the BR1 Pro’s listed above.

You might also consider the MAX BR1 Mini LTEA -US-T-PRM (CAT 7) as a more economical choice. Add the MAX-BR1-MINI-BD-FP-2Y for a sub $600 setup. Pair with the Mobility or Maritime or IoT 20G antenna.

Toss those Proxicasts.

Lastly, I didn’t cover Carrier Aggregation (CA) here based on your use case and having Starlink but in areas where you can get more than one BAND, CA is awesome for throughput and stability. All models listed above can do, at a minimum of 2 CA up and 2CA down with the BR1 PROs capable of more CA than the BR1 Mini.

Hope this helps!

(Peplink Partner, Central Oregonian, Traveler of the PNW)

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