Passive GPS antennas (also called substrates) do not include a Low Noise Amplifier (LNA) and are best suited to GPS applications requiring a short distance, 1 inch to 3 feet, between the GPS receiver and antenna.
Passive antennas require an LNA on the GPS receiver or mounting a separate LNA close to the RF input connector of a receiver that does not include an on-board LNA. The off-board LNA should be specified to provide additional gain to the substrate's basic gain figure (about 3 dBic or 4 dBic) so that the GPS signal presented to the GPS receiver is in the optimum gain range.
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