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It appears that nearly all "passive RFID" tag-reader combinations have around a 5-10cm specification for reading distance.

But I am interested in approx. 20 cm reading distance.

I am assuming one of these is the right approach to follow, but I'm not sure which:

  • Perhaps the 5-10 cm range is a constraint of the passive RFID technology itself, and I should look into other technologies?

  • Or is it that there exist variants within the passive RFID technology (and the frequency band within which they operate)?

  • Or should I look into different kinds of tags specifically (I highly doubt this is the case since they do after all transmit upon being energized by the reader)?

  • Or should I consider adding a specific external antenna to my RFID reader?

Note: I am aware of "Active RFID", but given its battery requirement on the tags, this is not ideal for my experiment.

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In my experience, ISO 15693-compatible tags work fine at that sort of range (assuming that the reader antenna is properly tuned and emits a powerful enough field). For example NXP ICODE SLI-family tags are generally available online and are usually reasonably priced.

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