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Upgrade wifi bluetooth combo card

davelor
Beginner
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Good day.

I have an old HP Pavilion Notebook 15-p214na, sku L0E01EA

I want to upgrade the Broadcom BCM43142 802.11bgn wifi M.2 adapter to a suitable intel wifi ac card with Bluetooth 5

My router is huawei b618-65d router. The specs are 802.11a/b/g/n/ac, dual-band 2.4GHz & 5GHz.

The form factor of my Broadcom BCM43142 is small. Please see pics attached.

Please suggest some model numbers of compatible intel units?

Thank you.

Broadcom BCM43142 installedBroadcom BCM43142 installedBroadcom BCM43142Broadcom BCM43142

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n_scott_pearson
Super User
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Before anything else, a warning: In older laptops, some manufacturers implement Inclusion/Exclusion lists in their BIOS and these can derail any attempt to use an upgrade card. If this is indeed the case, you can only purchase upgrades through the laptop manufacturer – and usually on an outrageous cost-plus basis.

There are two form factors in use for Wireless cards. The first is the PCIe Half-Mini Wireless (HMW, a.k.a. M.1) form factor. Cards in this form factor generally look like this:

n_scott_pearson_0-1716230555847.png

The second is the PCIe Next-Generation Wireless (NGW, a.k.a. M.2) form factor. Cards in this form factor generally look like this:

n_scott_pearson_1-1716231562616.png

As you can see, your existing card is of the HMW form factor and you will be looking for cards that are also in this form factor.

Now, I have presented information on both form factors for a couple of reasons. First of all, simply put, I wanted to make sure you didn't mistakenly order a card that wouldn't work (or even plug in). Secondly, all cards from Intel available in the HMW form factor have been discontinued by Intel. There are still lots of places to purchase them (or their clones) - but this means that the maintenance of the device drivers supporting these cards has also been discontinued. In fact, in most cases you won't find drivers for them in the Intel Download Center (I have a share that provides the final versions, however). Finally, Intel does not manufacture any of their new cards in this form factor. This is not a show-stopper, however; read on...

I mentioned clones. There are many companies (almost exclusively Chinese) that make clones of the Intel Wireless cards. This is possible because Intel manufactures integrated modules that can easily be plopped down onto a card regardless of which form factor is targeted. This is good because, since Intel is no longer manufacturing cards in the HMW form factor, you can still purchase clone cards, in the HMW form factor, that do have Intel's latest and greatest modules.

If you are fine with cards that support WiFi 5, Wireless-AC and Bluetooth 4.x/5.x, there are lots of cards to choose from. Here are a few examples:

If, on the other hand, you want to get the very latest cards with WiFi 6/6e, Wireless-AX and Bluetooth 5.x capabilities, they are just a few dollars more. To upgrade to the latest WiFi 6, Wireless-AX and Bluetooth 5.2, you need an Intel AX200 module. For WiFi 6e (which adds support for the 6 GHz Wireless band), Wireless-AX and Bluetooth 5.2, you need an AX210 module. These third-party cards utilize the exact same drivers as the NGW cards from Intel, downloaded (yourself) from the Intel Download Center, so nothing sketchy here. Here are some examples:

My recommendation is the MPE-AXE3000H (AX210). Note the following:

  • The examples that I have linked here were all chosen semi-randomly and should not be misconstrued to be an endorsement on my part. I have never purchased or used any of these products and thus cannot comment on their quality. I have read reviews, for example, where the OP complained that the connectors came right off the card. The company in question is not one that I used for my examples, however (hence why I said 'semi-randomly').
  • In the case of the AX200/AX210 cards, the ones that I actually purchased and tested were from a company named Fenvi - who doesn't seem to offer these particular cards for sale through Amazon (I purchased mine through NewEgg). I found the cards to be good quality and have not had any issues with them.

One final thing we have to discuss: Your picture shows only a single antenna connected to the card. If the laptop only has the one antenna, you will not be able to use the full capabilities of the card. In this case, there are kits you can purchase that provide another antenna that you can install into the laptop. Here is an example: IPEX Internal Antennas.

Hope this helps,

...S

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