[SOLVED] Maximum line of sight distance between mesh router and hubs?

Jun 13, 2022
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I manage a ranch in a very rural area where we just received our Starlink hardware, so we'll be getting very good bandwidth. The challenge I'm facing now is how to get that service to three buildings around our ranch HQ. The distance from the Starlink modem and the next building is 175', so with one of the new quad band mesh systems I think we should be able to connect from the primary router to a hub as long are we ensure that there is little to no interference between them. The rub comes in when connecting that second building to the third, which is a distance of ~310' with line of sight. Anyone know if the two hubs will be able to connect?
 

kanewolf

Titan
Moderator
I manage a ranch in a very rural area where we just received our Starlink hardware, so we'll be getting very good bandwidth. The challenge I'm facing now is how to get that service to three buildings around our ranch HQ. The distance from the Starlink modem and the next building is 175', so with one of the new quad band mesh systems I think we should be able to connect from the primary router to a hub as long are we ensure that there is little to no interference between them. The rub comes in when connecting that second building to the third, which is a distance of ~310' with line of sight. Anyone know if the two hubs will be able to connect?
You need to purchase point-to-multipoint hardware. NOT WIFI mesh hardware.
Look at the Ubiquiti AirMax radios. If the angles aren't too different, you might be able to use a single base unit with multiple receivers on the buildings.
 
Reactions: Darkbreeze

Darkbreeze

Retired Mod
What are the exact models of your modem/router and hubs?

Generally I think you are going to find trouble at any distance beyond 75' unless the standard of the models you have explicitly states otherwise based on whatever standard the devices are using.

You might want to consider powerline network adapters to reach those outer buildings.
 
Jun 13, 2022
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I'm considering the Netgear AXE11000 WiFi Mesh System (RBKE963). The buildings are on separate lines/panels, so I don't think power line will work. It is insanely expensive, but best I can tell the most powerful system available.
 

Darkbreeze

Retired Mod
So, as a general rule the higher the frequency the shorter the distance. 5Ghz and higher bands might offer better throughput for short distances but they do not have the same long distance capabilties as the much older 2.4 Ghz frequency, so that is likely where you'll get your best range. On paper, you COULD get as much as 300ft range using the 2.4Ghz frequency so long as there are no obstructions, but that is for PURELY line of sight with no walls. The fact that you might have to put your hubs inside means there WILL be at least a single wall obstruction unless you have some kind of antenna system that extends outside the walls which I haven't seen on these kinds of devices some I'm skeptical of that being an option.

I think if you are broadcasting from the primary router INSIDE the main building to a hub located INSIDE another building, you'll be pretty much in the same boat as within a house where the signal has to pass through multiple walls usually and that likely reduces your probable reach to something closer to 150ft, and even then the signal may not be particularly strong depending also on the specific capabilties of the network adapters being used to access the signal through your hubs or repeaters.

Networking isn't my strongest area and we have some others here who surely will chime in with more and better information than I can provide, but you might have to consider other options that allow for amplification of the repeated signal beyond the initial building that is closest IF you are even able to get a very good signal there.

Running ethernet cable to at least the first building and a wireless signal after that or even cable to all buildings might be a necessity. I don't think you need "the most powerful system available" because a lot of that is marketing and a lot of it is simply higher bandwidth and throughput within a close range and I don't think that the mesh system is what you really want either. For long distance signal you can probably get by with any 2.4Ghz capable N, AC or AX configuration that is compatible with your Starlink hardware, which admittedly, is an unknown to me since it's a relatively new technology. It might be a better option to see if it's possible to purchase additional Starlink modems and equip each building with it's own modem but I don't know if they'll allow you to do that or not without having additional accounts. Worth checking with them though because if you can do it like that then every device will get identical capabilities.

@kanewolf , @USAFRet or @bill001g can probably steer you better than I can but at least some of this question is simply answered by the basic specifications of the various frequencies. New WiFi modes don't really change that at all. Only lower frequencies or more efficient antenna systems when used with things like beamforming will really have much impact on wireless signal distance unless I'm even more clueless than I already know I am in this area.
 
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kanewolf

Titan
Moderator
I manage a ranch in a very rural area where we just received our Starlink hardware, so we'll be getting very good bandwidth. The challenge I'm facing now is how to get that service to three buildings around our ranch HQ. The distance from the Starlink modem and the next building is 175', so with one of the new quad band mesh systems I think we should be able to connect from the primary router to a hub as long are we ensure that there is little to no interference between them. The rub comes in when connecting that second building to the third, which is a distance of ~310' with line of sight. Anyone know if the two hubs will be able to connect?
You need to purchase point-to-multipoint hardware. NOT WIFI mesh hardware.
Look at the Ubiquiti AirMax radios. If the angles aren't too different, you might be able to use a single base unit with multiple receivers on the buildings.
 
Reactions: Darkbreeze
Jun 13, 2022
3
0
10
0
You need to purchase point-to-multipoint hardware. NOT WIFI mesh hardware.
Look at the Ubiquiti AirMax radios. If the angles aren't too different, you might be able to use a single base unit with multiple receivers on the buildings.
Thanks. Since starting this thread a few minutes ago I came across point to point, but didn't know which radios were best.
 

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