Tips for a High Earning Helium Hotspot

Maximize your Helium HNT rewards by following the People's Antenna high-earning hotspot rules.

LOCATION, LOCATION, LOCATION!
The most important factor to high-earning is determining where your Helium hotspot is placed within your geographic area. Of course, not everyone has a choice in the location where they can place their hotspot and must place it where they live. In that case, you can still earn well by following the other rules below.

Having a great line-of-sight view or location that is relatively higher than the surrounding areas are great starting places. Ideally the location would allow you to mount the antenna as high as possible. Generally the transmit scale of the hex you place your hotspot in has little effect on your own rewards.

HIGH UP!
Mount your People's Antenna as high up as possible. If the antenna must be indoors consider the highest points you can place it (e.g. attic if your roof is not metal). Height is one of the most significant factors in ensuring you can communicate with other Helium hotspots.

OUTSIDE!
Mounting your People's Antenna outside is the second most important thing. There are many ways to mount your antenna outside. If you mount on a roof ideally it would be placed at least several feet above the roofline. If you cannot get on the roof, you can easily mount the People's Antenna outside a window using the People's Antenna window mount bundle which includes a mount and cables necessary to put it outside.

The People's Enclosure is an excellent solution if you want to get your Helium hotspot outside and reduce signal loss by minimizing the antenna cable length.

ADD GROUND PLANE TO THE ANTENNA!

If your antenna is a typical 915 MHz or 868 MHz pole or mini style, adding a ground plane will increase signal reception...which is critical for increasing witnessing other hotspots as well as picking up sensor traffic. Higher-end expensive commercial LoRa antennas (especially higher dBi) often come ground planes, however most affordable Helium antennas do not. Ground plane kits can easily be added to most antenna models (McGill, PPL, RAK, Nebra, etc).

OPEN PORT 44158!
Until Light Hotspot support launches in Summer 2022, open port 44158 on your router to ensure you beacon. Beaconing increases your daily rewards by approximately 15%. Once the Light Hotspot firmware rolled out in middle 2022, opening the port will no longer be necessary for this to work.

LOW-LOSS ANTENNA CABLE!
The shorter the antenna cable, the better, since every foot adds loss to your signal strength. If you are mounting the People's Antenna a far distance (more than 6') from your Helium hotspot, make sure you are using a quality low-loss cable. Coax cable rated CDR-240 (or other 240 spec cables) is fine if the cable length is less than 20'. Use CDR-400 or equivalent grade for longer distances. If you use 400 grade cable be very careful to not put any pressure on the RP-SMA mount on your Helium hotspot to avoid damaging your hotspot.

Make for sure you determine the correct connectors at each end of the cable (N-type, RP-SMA, etc). The People's Antenna requires an N-type female at the antenna end.

NOT WIFI!
If at all possible, avoid WiFi and hardwire with CAT5E (or higher) Ethernet cable for connecting your Helium hotspot. The bandwidth consumption will drop significantly once Light Hotspot firmware launches, which should make WiFi viable option in the future. However, for now it is best to hardwire the Internet connection to the hotspot.

IF YOUR MINER HAS A 32GB SD CARD, UPGRADE ASAP!!!
RAK and MNTD hotspots shipped with 32GB SD cards, which were a fine specification in early 2021 while the network was small. However, as the blockchain has ballooned due to large number of miners being added and transactions increasing, it has been harder to keep hotspots in sync. Further, the size of the blockchain and associated data on the SD cards has been growing excessively fast. Until Light Hotspot support is launched, to minimize downtown upgrade your RAK and MNTD hotspots to a 128GB SD card ASAP. As of February 2022, there are many hotspots that are down half the month syncing and not even earning. This is an easy upgrade if you buy one of the pre-flashed 128GB SD cards, though it is fairly easy to flash your own 128GB SD card with one of the official RAK images.

UPGRADE TO DUAL MINE!
Upgrade to accessories that add AUTH dual mining capability to be able to also mine AUTH along with HNT. Check out PeoplesAntenna.com and other vendors for accessories that add AUTH mining to your existing hotspot.

THAT'S ALL FOLKS!
By following these rules when installing your People's Antenna, your hotspot should be earning the maximum reward it can for the location and height that it is placed.