Antenna for RFM69HW

Hi, I've seen a couple different types of antennas. I was wondering if anyone has a feel for the relative advantages of each. Can I really just solder a 4" wire to the antenna pin? Also, what kind of orientation should the wire be at relative to the orientation of the receiving module's antenna?

Here's a picture of one using just wire and one using an actual SMA antenna.


I had a big fail with the wire method! The range of the module was much less than I expected - perhaps I did something wrong or my soldering skills weren't up to it.

In the end I gave up and instead bought some of these modules and SMA stub antennas, it's working very well for me so far.