Question Considering moving to Verizon home internet, and also a wifi 6 mesh system.

axlrose

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Recently added a new phone to our family and ended up bringing home a Verizon modem/router(?) to try out. We live out in the sticks a bit and I was surprised to see recently that our internet now maxes all of the way up to about 175mb. It has been stuck at a max of 50mb for some years. Anyway, I think my older router (wifi 5?) and my older ap's (unifi) might cap at 100mb, which was never a problem before, but hopefully would be with the new Verizon option.

So, wondering about a mesh system. Probably three piece for three floors. Also, are mesh satellites still supposed to be wired? One daughter has a bedroom I have yet to figure out how to get cat6e wired too.

Thanks.

Matt
 
Most mesh systems are proprietary so you would either have to get something from verizon that matched their router or you would have to pretty much completely replace the verizon device and use it basically as a modem.

First note there is no such thing as cat6e and any vendor that tries to claim that is either stupid or they are trying to scam you. The cable designed to run 10gbit is called Cat6a. You do not really need that if your internet is only 175mbps. You can get by with cat5e or maybe cat6 if it is cheap. Key is to get pure copper wire with wire size 22-24. Massive amounts of fake cable being sold that does not meet the specs. Read the fine print and if you can't find these number shop someplace else.

I would look the part numbers up for your current equipment and see if it has 100m or gigabit lan ports.

So called MESH systems are mostly marketing hype. They are basically wireless repeaters some of the very expensive ones have extra dedicated backhaul radios to get past some of the performance issues using a radio for both backhaul and end user.

Although you can use most mesh systems via ethernet cable you are just paying way too much money to get them to stamp MESH on the box. Maybe they could put "new and improved" and that would make it faster :)

When you run it with ethernet cables you are using the industry standard for wifi installations that have been done since the beginning of wifi. It has always been one single network no matter if you call it mesh or not. The remote radios are functioning as simple AP.
If you think there is some magic roaming function that is more hype. The end device not the network controls roaming. The devices will or won't move between wifi source as long as the SSID match no matter if it is mesh or AP.

It is much cheaper to just buy a inexpensive router (you are only using the radio part) and run it as a AP. You could also buy real AP if you like.


What I would recommend you try first is to use your current equipment. If they do run 100mbps only and that is causing you some problems then you could look at replacing them. In general most application do not even need 100mbps, espeically stuff that runs on a mobile device that has no option to be hardwired with ethenet. Pretty much the only thing that can easily use over 100mbps is a large file download and I guess it depends on how much of that you do. Stuff like web surfing or even 4k netflix does not come anywhere close to 100mbps.
 

axlrose

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So much in here.

It's probably cat6a. Installed it in a few other rooms a few year ago and have a big wooden spool of it in the garage still because I've never figured out how to get to the back bedroom. It's from Monoprice and they've been pretty solid for me so far.

Thanks for the info on not working with Verizon's box. I don't know much about the Verizon equipment yet, as my wife just brought it home unexpectedly.

Satellites I have right now are unifi ap ac lr models. Looks like they should run faster than 100mps. Perhaps it's the old router then. Or maybe I have something not set up right with the ap's.

I've been looking at a tp-link model I think, which does have the backhaul channel, and it's fairly cheap, even with three ap's I believe. What quick reading I've done on them typically says mesh systems are much better than repeaters and range extenders as they don't require separate channels.

I have a wife and two kids. It's not unusual to have too much traffic with four laptops, four phones, a pc, echo dots, a projector streaming 4k, my wife works from home and does online content and live streaming. Heck, the download speeds with the hardline were enough for installing games to take overnight before. And I'd never game on my pc using wifi I'm not sure about the technical part of all that traffic, but the practical side says whatever increases I can get are going to be useful.

Thanks for some info to start working with.
 
Most mesh systems especially the cheaper ones are just repeaters that they renamed. The good mesh systems have dedicated radios for the backhaul.

You WANT separate channels for the backhaul. If you don't you have 2 times the signal in the same radio bandwidth....ie the signal going between the router and the remote mesh unit and the signal between the end machine and the mesh unit.

Again I would not buy any kind of mesh system if you already have ethernet cables. Just use your current equipment as the remote AP of buy very inexpensive routers. The ones you can get for under $50 that have a number 1200-1450. This matches most end equipment, buying fancy routers that support say 4x4 mimo when a end device only has 2 antenna is wasting money since it will only use what both devices support.
 

axlrose

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I guess I'll set up the new Verizon device with the current ap's and see what I get to start then. Can I speedtest using my phone? It's a OnePlus 9 Pro. I should be able to match speeds on the ap's with whatever my pc is able to get right? Both are hardwired to the router or gig switch. And I should be able to get faster than 100mpbs on my phone, or the chromebooks, or the macbooks right?

Thanks.
 
I was going to say no way you get as fast on wifi as you do on ethernet BUT forgot you said you only had 175mbps.

It all depends on what combination of wifi the ap/router support and your end device. In general most equipment from say the last 5 years has their fake number of at least 1200...ie 300 on 2.4 and 900 on 5. You will never get that but it is not uncommon for people to get 300 with that setup.

You need to go through the equipment and look the specs up. A switch is really cheap to replace. You can get a 8 port gigabit switch for about $20. In general 100mbps is enough for most things so even if the AP only have 100mbps ports and therefore limit the wifi to 100mbps also it might be enough.
Again try it and see since you have equipment to test with. You can decide later if you want to replace it. Pretty much anything that runs on a phone is not going to really be able to use even 100mbps. I mean technically you can run 4k netflix on some phones but if you can actually see it on the small screen is another story.
 
Maybe you posted this before but it could the end device and not the AP causing the issue.

First be sure you are connecting to the 5g radio band. 2.4g will generally get under 100mbps. Next I would try the same device say near the router to be sure it can actually get faster speeds. Although most portable devices can get around 300mbps or so there are some older devices that can't
 

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