How to set up a best home WiFi network system?


Oct 18, 2016
Let me explain my current set up.

ISP : TWC 200Mbps

NETGEAR C7000-100NAS WiFi Modem
connected wirelessly to NETGEAR EX7000 AC1900 WiFi Extender

I live in 3000 SF house two story and 5 bedrooms.
Modem is located on the first floor and extender is at the second floor.

I am having a little trouble with speed and connection.

So what I am trying to do is that if I get the best wifi router in the market, connect it wired to my cable modem and use wifi extender to extend the signal.

Please let me know if there is going to be a difference.

Thanks in advance.


Dec 16, 2015
wifi extender is always an annoying solution.
I'm coming from this setup and i gave up because in certain rooms or locations within the rooms, the weak wifi was enough for mobile devices not to switch to the other ssid, but to maintain the very slow connection...

in addition, the wifi extender will halve the speed that they seel you the extender. If extender is 300Mbps theoretical speed, then you will theoretically get max 150Mbps

So i physically moved my AP (actually a router turned into AP - netgear wndr4500) in the middle of the house, providing power from close-by plug, and gigabit network cable connection from the ISP modem.

As much as possible avoid the extender...

I would try these options, priority top to bottom:

1) find a creative solution to bring your modem in the center of the house - no need for extra wifi router/AP. You might need help from the cable company to bring the cable to your desired location/install splitter, etc... But depending on the layout, this might not cover entirely the house (e.g. if house layout is more rectangle instead of square)

2) have the extra router/AP (yeah, get the one with best stability/range/features) connected to your cable modem via cat5e, 6 cable (my setup). There are some wonderful flat cat 6 cables that you can hide very easily under carpet, etc...

3) good gigabit powerline adapters to connect your AP to your cable modem, if lan cable not possible (this is 10 times more expensive usually and adds extra points of failure and depnding of your wall wires, possibly instability). get the ones that have pass-through so that you don't lose a plug

As sancho said, the wifi extender solution is never going to pan out the way you want it to.
Between poor antenna's, and the simple fact that the extender as a middle man immediatly half's your bandwidth.

Bottom line even a $400 router is not going to provide wifi for a multi-story 3k foot home.

Here is what you need:
First off ditch the modem/router combo devices. these are pretty much never very good.
For 200mbps you need at minimum an 8 channel down modem, preferably a 16 channel.
You should be looking at a Moto MB7420 or zoom 5370 modem.

Then you need a decent router. I am partial to ASUS AC68_ (does not matter if W, R, U, P) router, but you can go with a cheaper one like TP-LINK C7 Archer.

Then you need to either run a ethernet cable or use a powerline adapter to go from primary router to an access point.
The difference between a wifi extender and access point is that that the access point gets it input from the router as a wired connection and not wireless thus avoiding the "half the bandwidth problem".

Then you need to either take an old (or cheaper) router and convert to an access point (not hard at all) or buy a dedicated access point from zyxel, engenius or ubiquiti. Another alternative is a router like the tp-link wdr3600 which has a quick toggle button in web gui to change it to Access Point mode.

You dont have to do this all at the same time, but the only way to have true stable wifi in that big of a house is to have a good modem and router to start with, then, preferably a hard wired or worst case gigabit powerline adapter, connection between your main router and an access point.

One more thing to discuss with access points is using the same SSID.
On paper you can set the SSIDs on the router and the access point to have same ID and password and your devices will roam freely and "auto-switch.
In practice if your device sets between these two devices often it will in fact spend more time disconnecting from one to the other then it will spend actually holding the wifi connection.
Thus you are better off having different SSIDs and manually switching when in-between the two.