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Which MiFi [Archive] - Event Photographer Society Forum

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Michael Martin
06-02-2011, 09:11 PM
Does anybody use MiFi at events and if so which one? Also have you been able to build it into a wireless network. Needs to run in a fully Mac based system.

I did try searching for MiFi, but it only has four characters and the search says in only allows words of five characters or more.

Stuart Morley
07-02-2011, 06:09 AM
Micheal

Try searching for "MiFi Wireless" and that will find what you are looking for.

Not used at Events (What do you need it for?) have however used USB sticks with a Mac and had some success. The only issue is that they (and MiFi?) are locked to a network so when you need to use them you often find that you have no signal (despite other networks being available!)

Take a look at http://www.amazon.co.uk/Huawei-Wireless ... cr_pr_pb_t (http://www.amazon.co.uk/Huawei-Wireless-Modems-E585-Modem/dp/B003VHT37U/ref=cm_cr_pr_pb_t)

Whilst I have no experience with this model (I might purchase one as I need a MiFi that I can use internationally) I do have the previous model which was a pain to use. It look like this is the solution you need as some of the problems have been ironed out now.

Keep us updated if you get to use one.

Stu

www.systeminsight.co.uk (http://www.systeminsight.co.uk)

Michael Martin
07-02-2011, 08:28 AM
Thanks Stu.

I had not thought of getting one at all until I went with a friend to the 3 shop as he does need one for where he is resident. I would be using it occasionally at some of the multi day events so that I can upload images to my website gallery during the quieter moments of the day. Otherwise they sometimes have to wait a few days before they become available, and the longer they have to wait the less they spend.

Stuart Morley
07-02-2011, 08:49 AM
I wouldn't bother uploading at an event. The upload would be painfully slow, expensive and if you did it that night, early next morning then that would be quick enough.

You could of course prepare to upload during the quiet times at the event.

Don't forget.....When the customers ask "Will they be available on the web" they are actually asking "Do I have to buy them now", my answer is "Not going on the web" so that means they have to buy them now! (A bird in the hand etc....) - Other peoples experiences may differ of course.

Stu

www.systeminsight.co.uk (http://www.systeminsight.co.uk)

Michael Martin
07-02-2011, 09:13 AM
You might be right about the upload speeds, which is why I was asking the question.

As for putting images on the web, I have always done this so the question most ask is 'When' not 'If'. It is always pointed out to them that there are additional postage charges and the three for two deal, or any other deal I offer on the day, will not be available on the web.

Andy Haynes
07-02-2011, 03:31 PM
My experience is that all the MiFi kit is pretty slow, and often very limited in terms of how many computers can connect. They also, by necessity, have tiny antennae, so the range is pretty poor, especially if you are connecting to something like eye-fi with and even more tiny antenna! To attempt to get round this (for the same reason, on-site upload) I bought a couple of wireless routers that you can plug a USB dongle into, and will share the connection out to the network...

At least, that's what they are supposed to do, but they don't, and never have, despite my trying about a million different variations of dongle/settings/networks.
:puter:
I think if someone could find hardware that would actually do this it would be great. For the record the one's I bought were Aztech routers, and they are fantastic in all other respects, including price (£25 each).

What I do currently is just have one laptop not on the wireless network, but with a normal dongle plugged in, and just move the web images onto it with a USB stick. It's not too slow to upload, given that I tend to size my web gallery images down to under 40k each.

Bryan Osborne
07-02-2011, 04:28 PM
For a lot of people in Event Photography Online Storefronts are a courtesy rather than a commercially significant part of the business. I also think that onsite delivery requirements will change significantly further reducing the "online sales" requirements...

richard ham
07-02-2011, 07:10 PM
I use the MiFi as linked from 3. You can connect upto 6 devices and the range is around 30 feet or so.
In a past life I was a store manager for 3 and I can tell you that as far as speeds go, 3 is about as fast as they get depending on coverage.
As well as 3g, the HSDPA speeds will range from 3.6mbps upto 14.4mbps for those in bigger cities.

If you do need one for regular use then go online and get their £15 month/5GIG package on a rolling month by month contract (no min term); once you've had it for a week or so, give them a ring to cancel it and you will be put through to the retentions team who will offer you either 15GIG for £15 per month or the same 5GIG for £8 per month.

As a footnote to all you guys 'n galls who are not aware; - NEVER, EVER.......upgrade your phone! Always ring and ask for a PAC (porting authorization code), again you will be put through to the retentions team who will throw deal after deal at you to retain your business.
Keep saying no to their deals until they finally agree to give you the code and at this point you will have had their best offer and can re-consider their best deal.
Even if you do get the PAC code, this doesn't mean you have cancelled your contract; it's simply a code which expires in 30 days and your contract will continue as normal if you donít use it.

Michael Martin
07-02-2011, 07:51 PM
Thanks for the responses. looking less interesting all the while.

Bryan, I think you might be right about delivery options on the day and I might be better off investing the money in a product idea I have.

Stuart Morley
07-02-2011, 09:57 PM
You might be right about the upload speeds, which is why I was asking the question.

As for putting images on the web, I have always done this so the question most ask is 'When' not 'If'. It is always pointed out to them that there are additional postage charges and the three for two deal, or any other deal I offer on the day, will not be available on the web.

The fact that the photos are more expensive after isn't the issue. If the client walks away then the chances of them buying later (regardless of the cost) are less and they are the sales that you lose which IMHO are not made up for by them buying later.

So they have to buy at the event or not at all. Given the fact that they have time / money at the event why would they not buy? Once they walk away they then have to a) find your website, b) find their images (usually with watermarks etc) c) have lost interest etc etc


Stu

www,systeminsight.co.uk

Andy Haynes
07-02-2011, 10:07 PM
Thanks for the responses. looking less interesting all the while.

Bryan, I think you might be right about delivery options on the day and I might be better off investing the money in a product idea I have.

I think it really depends on what events you're shooting. A significant portion of my events we do no on-site selling at all, as it simply isn't possible. What I do know is in general, uploading from site is a faff, slow(er) and takes up staff and time which you often could be using somewhere better. However, if you need to do it, then you need to. The question is more do you really need to? If you do, then you need multiple redundant options across several networks, and doing that with MiFi is currently expensive. Hence my post above re: using dongles instead.

Scott Kirk-Matthewson
09-02-2011, 08:08 PM
I use a Mifi on 3.
The use at events is for sending instant email copies of prints bought (1 per customer), uploading if thats whats required for the event (stopped doing it for military functions)

main reason for that is that the mifi gets me an avg of 3.5 dl/ 1.5 ul where as my landline at home is avg 750 kb dl/ 300 ish ul

Michael Martin
09-02-2011, 08:16 PM
I use a Mifi on 3.
main reason for that is that the mifi gets me an avg of 3.5 dl/ 1.5 ul where as my landline at home is avg 750 kb dl/ 300 ish ul

Don't understand what this means at all Scott.

Scott Kirk-Matthewson
13-02-2011, 09:47 AM
Sorry michael,
Basically, it is easier for me to upload at the venue.
My home landline has a download avg speed of 0.75mb/s, upload 0.512mb/s (on a good day)

the mifi from 3 gives me an avg of 3.5-5 mb/s download and 1.5mb/s upload.

so in theory it is almost 3 times faster for me to upload from the venue (usually while packing up)
also I went through a stage of giving a free low res by email on the spot, usually available on their iphones or blackberries before the print is finished!

hope thats a little clearer!

Andy Haynes
13-02-2011, 12:18 PM
Sorry michael,
also I went through a stage of giving a free low res by email on the spot, usually available on their iphones or blackberries before the print is finished!

Did you have any automated software to do this or was it a manual process each time?

Ray Jordan
16-02-2011, 01:33 PM
What about using your mobile phone as a modem? If you have a good data deal then surely this is a cheap way of doing this?

Cheers

Ray