AiMesh, same channel for all nodes vs. other mesh, different channels?

snovvman

Occasional Visitor
With AiMesh (86Us), I see that each node uses the same channels. Accordingly, the nodes' signals are overlaid on top of each other, with farther nodes being weaker than ones nearby. I also understand that overlaid/overlapped channels cause interference, which is why the nodes should properly spaced apart and not be overly dense.

With my Linksys Velop system, I believe I observed that each node used (or may use) different channels. WiFi tool showed the same SSID occupying different, non-overlapping/overlaid channels. Presuming Velop is smart enough, it could find all the open channels and use them among the different nodes. It would seem that this is a better strategy to reduce interference.

Questions--

Is it simply the AiMesh design limitation that keeps it from using different channels with each node, or is there a technical advantage in doing it this way?

Relatedly, is the Linksys strategy better in reducing interference? I *may* have noticed that my devices roamed (and were less sticky) better among the Linksys nodes than Asus. But this could be due to the range capabilities of the Asus -- or Linksys' "client steering" logic is better?

I would appreciate some insights.
 

OzarkEdge

Part of the Furniture
With AiMesh (86Us), I see that each node uses the same channels. Accordingly, the nodes' signals are overlaid on top of each other, with farther nodes being weaker than ones nearby. I also understand that overlaid/overlapped channels cause interference, which is why the nodes should properly spaced apart and not overly dense.

With my Linksys Velop system, I believe I observed that each node used (or may use) different channels. WiFi tool showed the same SSID occupying different, non-overlapping/overlaid channels. Presuming it is smart enough, it could find all the open channels and use them among the different nodes. It would, to me, seem that this is a better strategy to reduce interference.

Questions--

Is it simply the AiMesh design limitation that keeps it from using different channels with each node, or is there a technical advantage in doing it this way?

Relatedly, is the Linksys strategy better in reducing interference? I *may* have noticed that my devices roamed (and were less sticky) better among the Linksys nodes than Asus. But this could be due to the range capabilities of the Asus -- or Linksys' "client steering" logic is better.

I would appreciate some insights.

You can Google WiFi channel interference and read about co-channels, cross-channels, etc.

AiMesh requires co-channels for wireless backhauls... all nodes need to be on the same band channel to communicate.

Be glad your neighbors' multi-node mesh systems are not consuming all of the band channels. Instead, they are stacked up on their one band channel like you see if you survey enterprise WiFi when out and about. Only the traditional router AP - wired AP use up multiple band channels, if so configured.

OE
 
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snovvman

Occasional Visitor
AiMesh requires co-channels for wireless backhauls... all nodes need to be on the same band channel to communicate.

My AiMesh of 86Us in AP mode are Ethernet backhaul only. Still, all the nodes are using the same channels.

Be glad your neighbors' multi-node mesh systems are not consuming all of the band channels. Instead, they are stacked up on their one band channel like you see if you survey enterprise WiFi when out and about. Only the traditional router AP - wired AP use up multiple band channels, if so configured.

OE

In this case, with Ethernet backhaul, I'm still seeing same channels. Is it an AiMesh design limitation or "feature"?

As above, my Velop mesh system seems to do what you describe as the traditional router AP, using multiple band channels by default.
 
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OzarkEdge

Part of the Furniture
My AiMesh of 86Us are Ethernet backhaul only. Still, all the nodes are using the same channels.



In this case, with Ethernet backhaul, I'm still seeing same channels. Is it an AiMesh design limitation or "feature"?

As above, my Velop mesh system seems to do what you describe as the traditional router AP, using multiple band channels by default.

AiMesh doesn't change its wireless design/implementation when you plug in Ethernet cables. By default, the wireless backhauls are maintained for self-healing.

I'm not familiar with the Velop system, but I suspect the radios at each end of its wireless backhauls are using the same channel... otherwise, how would the nodes communicate with each other?

Any implementation has to operate within certain engineering and cost constraints... for the given scale of operation, a given design is sufficient i.e. co-channels, etc. If you are going to exceed these limits, you need a different design/system.

The question should be, does a given cheapo residential mesh system meet the application requirements? I can accept that most do, more or less, and some may do it better than others.

Sounds like you switched from Velop to AiMesh?... why?

OE
 

snovvman

Occasional Visitor
AiMesh doesn't change its wireless design/implementation when you plug in Ethernet cables. By default, the wireless backhauls are maintained for self-healing.

You stated in Post #2 "AiMesh requires co-channels for wireless backhauls... all nodes need to be on the same band channel to communicate.", which did not address my scenario, a wired backhaul.

I clarified in Post #3 my wired backhaul configuration and re-raised the question, whether AiMesh's single channel was by design or a limitation: "My AiMesh of 86Us in AP mode are Ethernet backhaul only. Still, all the nodes are using the same channels."

Though you stated in this post that "AiMesh doesn't change its wireless design/implementation when you plug in Ethernet cables. By default, the wireless backhauls are maintained for self-healing", you also stated in Post #2 that "Only the traditional router AP - wired AP use up multiple band channels, if so configured." In my case, it is *wired* in AP mode. This, along with "AiMesh doesn't change its wireless design...", would seem to suggest that the Asus system should be using multiple channels, no?

What remains unanswered is if the AiMesh single channel strategy was by design or a system limitation, notwithstanding cost constraints (addressing your point below).

I'm not familiar with the Velop system, but I suspect the radios at each end of its wireless backhauls are using the same channel... otherwise, how would the nodes communicate with each other?

Again, my Velop system uses a wired backhaul. It is still using multiple channels. Again, I am curious about the pros and cons of this strategy.

Any implementation has to operate within certain engineering and cost constraints... for the given scale of operation, a given design is sufficient i.e. co-channels, etc. If you are going to exceed these limits, you need a different design/system.

So, what is the Asus engineering constraint? The available channels are regulated. Presuming my area has sufficient co-channels, what benefit does the Asus single channel design provide, if any?

The question should be, does a given cheapo residential mesh system meet the application requirements? I can accept that most do, more or less, and some may do it better than others.

What do you consider to be a "cheapo residential mesh system"? Asus? Linksys? I also have a UniFi system that I have yet to try--that's next. Is that less "cheapo"? But my questions relate to WiFi operation and scenarios, not linked to any specific application requirements.

Sounds like you switched from Velop to AiMesh?... why?

Curiosity...

 

satyenshah

New Around Here
I observe the same behavior with a 3-node Aimesh network consisting of an AC88U, AC86U, and AC68U (merlin 386.4). Even when 'Ethernet Backhaul Mode' is set to Enabled, all three APs continue to use the same channel for both 2.4GHz and 5GHz. It's weird that ASUS presents a setting to enable/disable wireless backhaul for the full network with one click, but that setting doesn't also spread out the channels.
 
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snovvman

Occasional Visitor
It's weird that ASUS presents a setting to enable/disable wireless backhaul for the full network with one click, but that setting doesn't also spread out the channels.

True. I also saw that even though I disabled 11b, only the root node is disabled. The other nodes were still running 802.11b. AiMesh seems half-baked in some ways.
 

JR256

New Around Here
That's why I don't use AIMesh. You can get much more efficient configurations by manually configuring APs, media bridges and repeaters as needed.
 

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