Need new Router/Wifi Networking Ideas

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blueman457
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Need new Router/Wifi Networking Ideas

Post by blueman457 » Sat May 20, 2017 5:52 pm

I'm in the in market for a new router/wifi networking system: what is my best options/best product for my needs?

I have an Apple Airport Express from 2012, which runs fine except that the signal doesn't extend well all the way through my new place. I cannot move
the router.

I'm thinking my options are:
-Buy new router (which brand?)
-Buy mesh network (which brand?)
-Buy airport express to extend the network (3rd party access points/extenders don't work well with apple products... surprise surprise)
-Other Suggestions welcome

Requirements
-Kind of has to be idiot proof; love my wife but she's not technical so it has to be easy to use - no jumping between access points. I can set up technical things, but the ease of using it has to be simple.
-Security patches: I want a brand that regularly updates fireware/issues security patches. AND I don't want to go hunting for new security patches, I want to be notified when they are available and easily installed. I will have to say Apple does make that easy.
-Reliable
-No sure thing as future proof, but adaptable would be great
-# of devices? 12? Some cell phones, iPads, computers...

Thanks in advance,

Blue Man

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TheTimeLord
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Re: Need new Router/Wifi Networking Ideas

Post by TheTimeLord » Sat May 20, 2017 5:59 pm

I would go with a mesh network. I have LUMA and it works very well with all my Apple devices, I am sure you would find the same with Google WiFi. In my case head to head LUMA was faster but this seems to be the opposite of what online reviewers are reporting. Go Mesh.
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happyisland
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Re: Need new Router/Wifi Networking Ideas

Post by happyisland » Sat May 20, 2017 6:42 pm

There was a recent discussion on here that convinced me to get Google Wifi for my house. It works as I had hoped, and now I have reliable wifi in all corners of our property.

VaR
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Re: Need new Router/Wifi Networking Ideas

Post by VaR » Sat May 20, 2017 6:57 pm

I don't have personal experience with this yet but I am sold on the reviews and testimonials on mesh networks.

Google seems to be slightly cheaper than others. It didn't benchmark as fastest, though.

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TheTimeLord
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Re: Need new Router/Wifi Networking Ideas

Post by TheTimeLord » Sat May 20, 2017 7:03 pm

VaR wrote:I don't have personal experience with this yet but I am sold on the reviews and testimonials on mesh networks.

Google seems to be slightly cheaper than others. It didn't benchmark as fastest, though.
Last I checked Luma 3 pouter pack was cheaper than Google's.
IMHO, Investing should be about living the life you want, not avoiding the life you fear. | Run, You Clever Boy! [9085]

Big Dog
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Re: Need new Router/Wifi Networking Ideas

Post by Big Dog » Sat May 20, 2017 7:03 pm

if you like apple products, you might try the new apple routers first.

I have a new Time Capsule with ac and its range is much better than my previous N router. It covers to the back of the house without using the express to extend the signal.

user5027
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Re: Need new Router/Wifi Networking Ideas

Post by user5027 » Sat May 20, 2017 7:52 pm

I improved our wifi range by raising the router. Ours is in a room on the first floor. It use to be on the floor and I moved it to a high shelf, about 7-8 feet off the floor.

Five Scoop
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Re: Need new Router/Wifi Networking Ideas

Post by Five Scoop » Sat May 20, 2017 7:54 pm

Have an Eero system with 3 access points. It's been great. Devices access whichever point has the best signal. One wifi network name and password.

Totrep
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Re: Need new Router/Wifi Networking Ideas

Post by Totrep » Sat May 20, 2017 8:08 pm

Another vote for mesh. We upgraded to Google Wifi (3 pack) from an Airport Extreme and have been very satisfied. I think the Google Wifi system meets all of your requirements (and I suspect the other major brands for mesh routers would as well).

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Toons
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Re: Need new Router/Wifi Networking Ideas

Post by Toons » Sat May 20, 2017 9:22 pm

Google Mesh Network,
I use it...Outstanding coverage,speed.
Read about it. :happy

https://madeby.google.com/wifi/how-it-works/


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lurker415
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Re: Need new Router/Wifi Networking Ideas

Post by lurker415 » Sun May 21, 2017 3:45 am

I just bought a Portal router to replace a TP-Link Archer C7, and am very happy with it. Speed literally tripled, and less interference in my crowded building, as it uses different 5Ghz channels than other routers. It's mesh-capable, but I am just using a single router Highly recommended.

Goal33
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Re: Need new Router/Wifi Networking Ideas

Post by Goal33 » Sun May 21, 2017 4:01 am

Try a Netgear R7000
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gtd98765
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Re: Need new Router/Wifi Networking Ideas

Post by gtd98765 » Sun May 21, 2017 4:46 am

Lots of background info and recommendations here: http://thewirecutter.com/reviews/best-w ... king-kits/

Dukethegator
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Re: Need new Router/Wifi Networking Ideas

Post by Dukethegator » Sun May 21, 2017 5:48 am

gtd98765 wrote:Lots of background info and recommendations here: http://thewirecutter.com/reviews/best-w ... king-kits/
Over the phone I walked my non tech savvy sibling through setting up the Orbi in about five minutes the week before Thanksgiving she has had no trouble since. Similarly, I set up a Plume network at my parents' house over the holidays and they've loved it. I don't think anyone can go wrong with either pick.

I have had friends run into roaming problems with Eero and Google Wifi, but I have no experience with either.

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CyberBob
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Re: Need new Router/Wifi Networking Ideas

Post by CyberBob » Sun May 21, 2017 7:05 am

Airport Expresses work stupendously well as extenders for another Airport/Express. I had three of them in a three-story 7,000 square foot house and there wasn't a dead-spot anywhere, even in the backyard.

I actually have three spare Expresses I'm not using right now and wondering what to do with them. PM me your address and I'll be happy to send them to you. I'd love for them to find a good home. They're even all in the original boxes.

Bob

TallBoy29er
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Re: Need new Router/Wifi Networking Ideas

Post by TallBoy29er » Sun May 21, 2017 8:56 am

One more vote for Googe mesh network. The three piece set covers a medium house well, and extends to our front and back patio easily. We had an older Airport that we replaced. Ran a speedtest (Ookla) before and after install, and our download speed increased considerably.

Re setup: Very simple, maybe 10 minutes. Google updates their firmware automatically.

blueman457
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Re: Need new Router/Wifi Networking Ideas

Post by blueman457 » Sun May 21, 2017 9:15 am

I might go the mesh set up (although cyberbob I might take you up on your offer!); I've done some reading on some of the technical aspects of mesh networks. Can anyone comment on the non-google hardware? Google historically abandons a lot of their hardware projects, so I'm a bit weary of jumping into their product line.

Blue Man

antiqueman
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Re: Need new Router/Wifi Networking Ideas

Post by antiqueman » Sun May 21, 2017 9:33 am

I don't use an Ethernet.

I just have wireless "mifi" whichis a 6 inch device that picks up internet signal from cell tower.

Will the mesh or other network work with just a 'mifi"

As you can tell I don't know much about how the technology works but I can access the internet.

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Cosmo
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Re: Need new Router/Wifi Networking Ideas

Post by Cosmo » Sun May 21, 2017 10:41 am

Hopefully you don't have AT&T U-verse. While you can set up a mesh network with AT&T U-verse, it is a bit more complicated.

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CyberBob
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Re: Need new Router/Wifi Networking Ideas

Post by CyberBob » Sun May 21, 2017 4:16 pm

blueman457 wrote:(although cyberbob I might take you up on your offer!)
I've got two left now. Somebody snapped up the third one.
Although, if you've already got one, adding two more as extenders should be more than enough, unless your house is hotel-size :D

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htdrag11
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Re: Need new Router/Wifi Networking Ideas

Post by htdrag11 » Mon May 22, 2017 2:24 pm

CyberBob wrote:
blueman457 wrote:(although cyberbob I might take you up on your offer!)
I've got two left now. Somebody snapped up the third one.
Although, if you've already got one, adding two more as extenders should be more than enough, unless your house is hotel-size :D
You've PM.

tech_arch
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Re: Need new Router/Wifi Networking Ideas

Post by tech_arch » Mon May 22, 2017 2:29 pm

+1 to use additional Airport hardware. The Airport Utility makes setting up additional nodes very easy; the wizard is maybe 3 steps and you're done.

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gunn_show
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Re: Need new Router/Wifi Networking Ideas

Post by gunn_show » Mon May 22, 2017 5:29 pm

Five Scoop wrote:Have an Eero system with 3 access points. It's been great. Devices access whichever point has the best signal. One wifi network name and password.
This is what I have and it works quite well. You can give out guest network passwords. It does all the updates itself overnight. Very simple to use. Google makes their own version of this as well. I think there is an Amazon brand called Starry too.

And agree with another response that there was a lengthy thread on this recently.
"The best life hack of all is to just put the work in and never give up." Bas Rutten

Easy Rhino
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Re: Need new Router/Wifi Networking Ideas

Post by Easy Rhino » Mon May 22, 2017 6:00 pm

A thought.

If your network dead zones are maybe one or two specific spots, then maybe airport express to expand what you got.

But if there's multiples or lots of areas that aren't covered, then maybe replace with mesh.

ilisira
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Re: Need new Router/Wifi Networking Ideas

Post by ilisira » Mon May 22, 2017 7:11 pm

Toons wrote:Google Mesh Network,
I use it...Outstanding coverage,speed.
Read about it. :happy

https://madeby.google.com/wifi/how-it-works/


https://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_ss_i ... LHXZ6VEFW2
Google wifi had fixed all my wifi problems (I do work on networks in my day job, and had used enterprise level AP's in the past with controllers). In addition to the coverage, it comes with the frequent software updates, which are more, and more important these days with all security problems on virtually all devices we use.

*One problem that happened in the past ~six months I used: once they were able to manage to factory reset some of the AP's. For me, it was not the main AP acting as the router, but one of the mesh ones, so I did not even realize it, but it caused some headache for others, and they apologized. This was I believe in February when every single google session was forced to signout/reconnect.

Xpe
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Re: Need new Router/Wifi Networking Ideas

Post by Xpe » Mon May 22, 2017 7:24 pm

i have eero (3 units) and have been very happy. very strong coverage all throughout our 3-level house (furnished basement where my office is).

it's also nice when you have company, through the eero app you can open a guest network and text the credentials to your visitor(s), with just a couple clicks.

NYCguy
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Re: Need new Router/Wifi Networking Ideas

Post by NYCguy » Mon May 22, 2017 7:53 pm

I just replaced a six airport extreme network set up with the Ubiquity Unifi line of router, managed switches and Wifi access points.

It provides excellent management of multiple VLANs and multiple Wi-Fi networks. I have been able to isolate my IOT devices from my more sensitive devices. You can also monitor network traffic real-time remotely.

It is more of a pro sumer, small business set up but it is very user-friendly. Also excellent customer support.
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Worm112
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Re: Need new Router/Wifi Networking Ideas

Post by Worm112 » Tue May 23, 2017 9:43 am

How often do people replace their networking equipment? I know technology has evolved quickly and reading this make me feel like I am in the stone age. My current system is NetGear wireless router from circa 2005 and a Verizon router that slightly postdates that by maybe two years. Thanks for any input.

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gunn_show
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Re: Need new Router/Wifi Networking Ideas

Post by gunn_show » Tue May 23, 2017 11:07 am

Worm112 wrote:How often do people replace their networking equipment? I know technology has evolved quickly and reading this make me feel like I am in the stone age. My current system is NetGear wireless router from circa 2005 and a Verizon router that slightly postdates that by maybe two years. Thanks for any input.
only when the actual technology is upgraded (802.11a/b/g/n/ac) or the bandwidth from your provider is more than an older router/modem can handle. e.g.: you get 100mbps from your provider but your modem handles 50. You are losing half your bandwidth due to your tech. If you go out and get a 1,000 megabits capable modem, you will probably be fine for a long time again.
"The best life hack of all is to just put the work in and never give up." Bas Rutten

takeshi
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Re: Need new Router/Wifi Networking Ideas

Post by takeshi » Wed May 24, 2017 7:47 am

Worm112 wrote:How often do people replace their networking equipment?
There's no single fixed timeframe for everyone out there and average doesn't really matter. If what you have is working for you then why are you worrying about it? The time to replace is when it's no longer meeting your needs. Are you having problems or just looking to keep up with the Joneses?
Worm112 wrote:My current system is NetGear wireless router from circa 2005 and a Verizon router that slightly postdates that by maybe two years.
We can try to guess based on 2005 but the specific models would be more useful. What do you have connecting to these? The goal is to identify the weakest link in the chain and determine if there would be a gain by replacing that link. If you're using older hardware that isn't any faster than your router and gateway then you probably don't stand to gain much, if anything. If you have equipment that is capable of better throughput and your connection is capable of taking advantage of that and you're looking for additional throughput then there could be a benefit to upgrading.

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Re: Need new Router/Wifi Networking Ideas

Post by BHUser27 » Wed May 24, 2017 9:06 am

gunn_show wrote:
Worm112 wrote:How often do people replace their networking equipment?
only when the actual technology is upgraded (802.11a/b/g/n/ac) or the bandwidth from your provider is more than an older router/modem can handle.
Keep in mind that in order to take advantage of many of the new technologies (MIMO, AC, et al), your clients need to be upgraded as well.

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Re: Need new Router/Wifi Networking Ideas

Post by scooterdog » Wed May 24, 2017 5:19 pm

Two years ago we decided to upgrade the Verizon FiOS router, thinking the wifi a/c/n would give us better speed. Turned out it was not happy where we located it, and we then ended up buying the latest-generation Apple AirPort Extreme and using the Extreme for the wifi functions (IIRC it was 'bridged' so that the Verizon unit still does the routing but the Apple AirPort Extreme handles the wireless.

We live in a very large house, and the coverage and reliability are great. I was tempted last year to upgrade to mesh flagship these systems first came out, but frankly our coverage is so good there was no need to upgrade. Lot less $$ too.

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CyberBob
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Re: Need new Router/Wifi Networking Ideas

Post by CyberBob » Thu May 25, 2017 6:31 pm

blueman457 wrote:(although cyberbob I might take you up on your offer!)
Sorry Blue Man, but the early Bogleheads got the worms...er, routers. All three Airport Expresses have now been spoken for. :(

jbranx
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Re: Need new Router/Wifi Networking Ideas

Post by jbranx » Thu May 25, 2017 9:49 pm

I have three Eero's for my 2200 sq. ft. condo with thick walls. Excellent performance on Cox Cable highest speed of 300 MBps. Setup was pretty easy, and I like the fact that I can monitor on my Android phone. Also like the fact that it auto-updates security and new features. I have a big WD rack plugged directly into the main router and run Windows pc's, M'soft Surface, Macs, Kindle, Android and Iphones on Wifi. Service is good if you have to call. Price is the only issue, but it's far superior to my experience with Cisco and Netgear and D-Link routers. I bought at Amazon, but Eero gives the same price on its website and occasionally offers discounts. Nice Apple-like, non obtrusive design.

jebmke
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Re: Need new Router/Wifi Networking Ideas

Post by jebmke » Fri May 26, 2017 7:07 am

takeshi wrote:We can try to guess based on 2005 but the specific models would be more useful. What do you have connecting to these? The goal is to identify the weakest link in the chain and determine if there would be a gain by replacing that link. If you're using older hardware that isn't any faster than your router and gateway then you probably don't stand to gain much, if anything. If you have equipment that is capable of better throughput and your connection is capable of taking advantage of that and you're looking for additional throughput then there could be a benefit to upgrading.
Yes, although a router built in 2005 is probably not supported by the manufacturer any more - the last firmware update on that may have been a long time ago. Newer routers may be more secure and the firmware updates still being released by the manufacturer.
When you discover that you are riding a dead horse, the best strategy is to dismount.

Hug401k
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Re: Need new Router/Wifi Networking Ideas

Post by Hug401k » Fri May 26, 2017 8:29 am

I recently upgraded to Google wifi-3pack. It is an amazing improvement for me with FIOS. I had an extender and repeaters trying to cover my old house full of chimneys, staircases and horsehair plaster. Signals were weak and would often drop. I could not stream in most places. We could not get a decent signal upstairs. Most interesting is that my macbook finally can hold a wifi connection. It had been dropping constantly, to the point where I had been to the Genius bar 2x to no avail. Yup, ends up it was a wifi issue more than a macbook issue (despite the lack of problem with my phones and iPads). In any case, it ended up to being one of those situations where you pretty much decide it was worth the cost on day one.

jebmke
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Re: Need new Router/Wifi Networking Ideas

Post by jebmke » Fri May 26, 2017 8:34 am

Extenders often result in a lot of signal loss. I have found that Ethernet cable or powerline is better for placing another WAP on our network.

Our internet speed peaks at about 8mbs so our weakest link is the ISP.
When you discover that you are riding a dead horse, the best strategy is to dismount.

blueman457
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Re: Need new Router/Wifi Networking Ideas

Post by blueman457 » Sat Jun 03, 2017 11:25 pm

I ended up finding a cheap apple airport to extend my network. I want to upgrade my router/NAS/backup/sync at some point in the next 12 months so I don't want to spend a lot of money on a mesh network until I figured out what I wanted to do.

Thanks,

Blue Man

123
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Re: Need new Router/Wifi Networking Ideas

Post by 123 » Sun Jun 04, 2017 12:04 am

Due to wiring issues our router is at one end of the house and it would be a hassle to relocate it due to other cabling etc. I recently got a wi-fi extender (Netgear AC750 Model 3700 from Amazon, under $40) and placed it in the middle of the house in a hallway. Wifi is now great throughout the house. I used the same network name on the extender as on the router so there's no need to adjust any devices.
The closest helping hand is at the end of your own arm.

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SacredSword93
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Re: Need new Router/Wifi Networking Ideas

Post by SacredSword93 » Thu Jun 15, 2017 2:29 am

Try WiFi monitor, a useful utility for diagnosing problems with the network. Simple and convenient to use, it provides a good set of tools for diagnosing the network, searching and solving problems, is available for all popular operating systems, as well as free of charge.

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