I want to build a coin sized receiver that can operate over a distance of 50 feet. I am interested in using a 2.4 GHz ceramic chip SMD antenna, like the one described here


I also want to build/buy a transmitter, but because the transmitter does not have the same size and power constraints that the receiver has, I am trying to investigate the receiver first, with the goal of then finding a transmitter to suit the receiver. Due to this, I do not yet know the transmitter strength. Is there any way I can estimate whether the chip antenna will be able to receive over the required distance without knowing the specs of the transmitter? Can anyone give their opinion on whether this type of chip antenna might be capable of receiving over a distance of 50 feet? (This is an indoor environment) Does this sound reasonable? If so, what kind of transmitter specs would you be looking for? If not, would there be another option I should look at?

I have also found this XBee chip antenna which is claimed to have a range of 300 feet


Detailed Datasheet here http://www.sparkfun.com/datasheets/Wireless/Zigbee/XBee-Datasheet.pdf

This is a little too big, and a lot more expensive for what I have in mind. I just want to use a signal received as an ON command for a connected component, so I am thinking that I do not need to send a lot of data with each transmission.

I have also found lower frequency chip antennas here


These operate on 868 MHz, but are of course larger.

Any suggestions?

  • \$\begingroup\$ Your link to Alibaba says "Antenna" on the page, but the diagrams are for a balun. Good luck getting a proper data-sheet! \$\endgroup\$ Commented Feb 27, 2013 at 8:56

1 Answer 1


I think you're a bit confused with regard to the terminology here.

You link to an XBee, which is a microprocessor, connected to a RF tranciever, which has an antenna on it. You do realize you need the microprocessor and RF tranceiver, correct?

Even something as simple as sending a simple on-off signal is fairly involved. You need some sort of transmitter and receiver in addition to the antenna, you know!
Realistically, RF (radio frequency) design is hard. From your question, I think it may be a bit over your head.

There are certainly highly inexpensive RF transmitter-receiver pairs (take this tx/rx pair from Seeed studio - $4.90!). However, this will not do anything without an associated microcontroller. If you pair it with something like an Arduino, you could likely make it do what you want. However, that would involve a fair bit of work.

Realistically, assuming you just want to turn something on and off, a pre-built transmitter and receiver pair may be more along the lines of what you want.


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