AiMesh recommendations for Wired backhaul and 100-200MBPS Internet Connection

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Mark M

Occasional Visitor
Hey Guys,

I took a look at the dongknows AiMesh Router Combos that was updated on April 20th. Now I'm looking for input and opinions here. We got a new house in the poconos (ranch style) and I'm going to need two units based on how wide the house is.

Key Points:

-Internet connection is 100/100mbps. It's fiber (pretty cool to have Fiber in the area)
-Will be doing Wired backhaul.

Where I'm having trouble picking a Host and a Node: It's only going to be a 100mbps connection (maximum 200mbps if I decide I need more speed down the line). In this case I don't think I need anything high-end. I'm thinking I can get away with a mediocre wireless AC/Wireless AX system, whichever is a better value.. How about the RT-AX92U 2pack. Anyone have experience with that? Seems to be ~$350 for the pack. Another option is two RT-AX58U's, or two RT-AX68U's, or even a 2-pack of RT-AC68U's.

I'm looking for something stable. I also don't know if I want to mix and match models as keeping them the same is good for stability.

What do you guys think?
 

L&LD

Part of the Furniture
Up to 100/100Mbps and wired backhaul? 2x RT-AC86U's for the most bang for the buck.

If the 'AC86U's are priced 'correctly', they are the obvious choice here. The AX92U seems hit and miss for many. The 'AX58U is underpowered. The 'AX68U' hasn't been proven yet.

For stability, a pair of 'AC86U's are hard to beat in wired AiMesh mode (with the latest lRMerlin firmware and v2.0 of AiMesh, of course).
 

Tech9

Very Senior Member
What do you guys think?

Anything else, but RT-AC86U. This is the very first HND Asus router model, had reliability issues in the past and has overheating issues reported multiple times. If you really want it, get the maximum available warranty and keep it cool. You have higher chances to play RMA game with Asus with this one. I know what fails inside and why it fails. Search the forum for details. You may find folks with more than one dead AC86U. I would go with AX92U 2-pack (no Asuswrt-Merlin support) or 2x AX58U (if you prefer Asuswrt-Merlin). RT-AC68U is extremely reliable, but too old to buy in 2021.
 

L&LD

Part of the Furniture
The vocal majority has been raising the alarms for the RT-AC86U, particularly in this forum.

In my experience for many customers (many with 2x RT-AX86U bought past 2019 and used currently in AiMesh mode) are simply enjoying them.

One customer was convinced his router was a dud too. Until the ISP finally admitted they were throttling him when he indicated he was switching providers.

Do these units run cool? Not compared to low-powered desktop computers.

But a working temperature of 74 to 82 degrees (same as the RT-AX86U's, btw, in similarly warm environments) is not hot for these SoC's that are rated for 110 to 120C, depending on the specific model we're talking about.

Warranty is a waste of money if it cost much more than a few dollars over half a decade.

Keep the wasted 'warranty' money and buy a better model if/when you need to next. :)
 

Tech9

Very Senior Member
In my experience for many customers

You are the guy giving advice to reboot computers/drivers daily to keep them going, is that right? How many customers do you have? Share your company details here and let us see what are you talking about. What's your service area and what's this home router support about? Thank you!

You need to reboot some computers/drivers daily or at least every second day
 

L&LD

Part of the Furniture
I offer advice specific to the situation. As with any free suggestions, take them or leave them. In my experience, they work, where nothing else does.

But please, don't state things I have never said.
 

Tech9

Very Senior Member
not hot for these SoC's that are rated for 110 to 120C

This is incorrect. AC86U/AX68U/AX86U/AX88U/AX92U etc. same generation SoC has thermal protection set at 100C and it starts disabling CPU cores. The overheating problem is not just CPU die temperature related and if the CPU will survive 120C. I did explain what happens in a long term and why in my previous posts. I do component level hardware repairs; one of my AC86U survivors has re-balled radio IC. Yes, the same one that fails quite often on this model - 2.4GHz radio. Do you know what lead-free solder melting point is? It's about 220C. The IC obviously survived.

But please, don't state things I have never said.

I quoted you. Unchanged. Please, don't give free advice for things you don't know. Someone may take it. Stay safe.
 

Tech9

Very Senior Member
Thanks guys.

We're cool. Different opinions is good, unsupported claims is bad. You say your networking skills are above average. You also have one UniFi system running. Why AiMesh this time around?
 

L&LD

Part of the Furniture
Sorry @Tech9 but you're not the tech source I trust here.


I don't need to be able to take things apart and put them back together (but I can) to know if they're good or not.

My customer's working models speak for themselves.

I have seen several 'original' RT-AC66U's die on customers (a year or less in use when these were 'new').

I haven't seen any RT-AC86U's die (and I've installed much more of them) even if I have read about a few here.
 

Tech9

Very Senior Member
I haven't seen any RT-AC86U's die (and I've installed much more of them)

I'm genuinely interested what company installs and supports home routers with custom firmware. I've read some of your older posts. Dare to share more details? Do you install Asus routers only? OpenWRT? This forum has tens of thousands Asus/Netgear users registered. Your customers must be somewhere around, I believe. Thank you!
 

L&LD

Part of the Furniture
I'm not a company, I'm someone who offers what I know and proceeds according to the customer's needs and wishes.

I don't support the hardware, I support the customer.
 

Mark M

Occasional Visitor
We're cool. Different opinions is good, unsupported claims is bad. You say your networking skills are above average. You also have one UniFi system running. Why AiMesh this time around?
I agree. I like to hear both sides and look into my own facts.

Funny you mention. My first thought I was thinking of doing another UniFi system. Considering I want to upgrade my every-day home's NanoHD to a U6-LR, and I could bring the NanoHD up to the pocono house...

I originally thought I'd need a dedicated controller up there running at all times, but seems I don't. Or, I suppose I could get a Unifi Security Gateway? I see their website suggests it only handles up to 85 mbps internet though. (Instead of a PfSense Firewall/Router + server with controller software). Right now at home I have a PfSense box, and a Server which houses the controller software on it.

I was leaning towards the AiMesh due to simplicity to setup though. But I guess I could go either way. Like I said before, I want something stable I don't have to worry about. Also, the internet pipe is going to be either 100 or 200 mbps. I suppose the AI Mesh system with two AC-68U's would probably run me a total of $200. But I'm turned off by the hardware being old.
 
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bbunge

Part of the Furniture
AX86U for both router and node. This is a 4x4 on 5 GHz and 3x3 on 2.4 GHz. Plenty of processing power and RAM.
Edit: I too have 100/100 fios. Often test out to 110/110. After 10/1 DSL this is heaven.
 
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Tech9

Very Senior Member
I'm not a company, I'm someone who offers what I know and proceeds according to the customer's needs and wishes.

What services do you offer to your customers? I read about your customers with Merlin routers and scripts quite often, I read you sell routers to customers and I see you're extremely excited on every Merlin/script update. What is there to support so much in home routers except Flashrouters type of "business" based on someone else's work provided to the community for free and supported for free on a free forum? You started with "my many customers", mentioned it twice in this very same thread - please explain what do you mean. Thank you!

I suppose the AI Mesh system with two AC-68U's would probably run me a total of $200. But I'm turned off by the hardware being old.

It's late 2013 router model, but still actively supported by Asus and even re-released as RT-AC66U B1 variant. Both run the same firmware. For stability I would pick 2x AC68U over any new Asus HND router model. Not in AiMesh, but in router/access point configuration. Read about AiMesh stability complaints here on SNB, many threads. Clean dual AC68U setup with no TrendMicro or AiMesh involvement is going to work as long as it has power. I would use the beta 41994 firmware on both - it's stable and it doesn't auto-update. You know what you're doing, you can update when you decide with no surprises. I don't think you need anything fancy or more expensive there, based on your requirements in post #1.
 

L&LD

Part of the Furniture
I offer many services. Some of that involves setting up networks. Some of those network owners agree when I mention the benefits of RMerlin firmware to install it on their networks. I hope your curiosity is satisfied. But really though, stop being so nosy. And stop reading so much into what others post.

And I am excited about Asus/RMerlin powered routers. Best router(s) to buy for most home and many small 'business' use cases too. Easily.

Free doesn't mean I don't encourage them to donate where and as they can (I've mentioned this before), and they do.

Free also doesn't mean these (mostly older) customers know how to do anything with those tools either.

Btw, I'm not making any 'real' money from this side of the networking part of my services. I am helping people stay connected for a fair price and with excellent hardware (which I don't sell, btw, as I've also stated before) and with outstanding firmware (for those that want/see the benefits of RMerlin firmware).
 

bbunge

Part of the Furniture
Children, please be kind. Respect the other opinion even if they are wrong.
 

bbunge

Part of the Furniture
The AC66U_B1 with AC68U nodes keeps chugging along. It is on a 300/35 cable provider. One node is Ethernet and the other WIFI. I get the occasional complaint from guys connected to the WIFI node about speed but with 10 to 15 phones connected to the WIFI node and it is still working it is good! I am planning to replace the AC66U_B1 with a newer AC86U and make the AC66U_B1 another node to increase guest WIFI coverage in the warehouse. But that is a 60 mile trip for me to do that and the flower beds need care.
 

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