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  1. #1
    Moderator VJ's Avatar
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    Default router? mesh router?

    Hello!

    I'm looking for a solution for my parents network, mainly wifi. The issue is that currently they don't have good wifi coverage, but also their wired devices do not work that well. The cause of the former is the bad position of the router (in a technical space, next to a second internet-provider supplied router, the electrical cabinet and the water heater); the cause of the former is some older 100 Mbit switches.

    The internet provide supplies a modem-router, but as it has a bad reputation for security and has terrible range, I prefer to put our own router behind it. As the internet connection is via TV cable (coax), it is difficult to replace it. Currently, our router is an Asus RT-AC51U ( https://www.asus.com/Networking/RTAC51U/specifications/ , the point of 433 Mbit wireless combined with 100 Mbit ethernet ports escapes me). The infrastructure currently is as follows

    Code:
    provider-modem-router
    |- tv decoder (via in-wall cable)
    |- second tv decoder (via in-wall cable)
    '-. asus RT-AC51u
      |  (cable in wall from technical space to room)
      '-. tplink gigabit switch
        | computer
        | printer
        | NAS
        '-. 650 Mbps powerline adapter
        .-' 650 Mbps powerline adapter
        '-. dlink 100 mbit switch
          |- tv
          |- blue ray
          '- amplifier
    Wifi is quite weak everywhere, so I should put the access point elsewhere. The decoder boxes have get their IP from the provider's modem-router. I can easily move the RT-AC51u to the other room (using the in-wall cable to connect the provider modem-router to the wan port of the asus), but then I have no wifi in the living room.

    My current idea is to get a new gigabit router, and wire it that way, with the old router as access point in the living room:
    Code:
    provider-modem-router
    |- tv decoder (via in-wall cable)
    |- second tv decoder (via in-wall cable)
    '-. 
      |  (cable in wall from technical space to room)
      '-. new router
        | computer (could also be on wifi)
        | printer (could also be on wifi)
        | NAS
        '-. 650 Mbps powerline adapter
        .-' 650 Mbps powerline adapter
        '-. tplink gigabit switch
          |- tv
          |- blue ray
          |- amplifier   
          '- asus RT-AC51u (as wifi access point)
    It may still not be the best solution, the powerline give about 200 Mbit of throughput. I can still move the NAS in the same room as the tv, as my parents could actually access it more that way (it is configured to make a backup of the computer, but they don't really work on the NAS nor generate a lot of data, it does contain music and photos that could be viewed on TV if the network is fast enough - which it currently is not). The RT-AC51u would still limit the wireless speed, but as my parents only use tablets/smartphones there, the bottleneck of 100 Mbit should not be an issue.

    It would just require me to get a router, so that should not be too expensive. But now I'm also looking at mesh router options. It would allow me to forego the powerline adapters, and may be more stable as a result.
    What is the experience here with mesh routers? Many seem rather expensive solutions...
    I was looking at the Ubiquiti Amplifi range... they look elegant and interesting.

    Another idea I had was to put a switch and the router in the living room (the switch would split the in-wall cable to the decoder box and to the wan port of the router). But then I still need powerline or mesh to get to the other room, so I'm not sure that layout will give me much more benefits.

    Any thoughts?
    Last edited by VJ; 3rd January 2020 at 02:27.
    pixar
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