ASUS AiMesh Reviewed

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thiggins

Mr. Easy
Staff member
I find the charts hard to understand in the review because no legend or list of what UOM is applied to which value is listed.
Look more closely. X axis is clearly labeled in ms. Legend is in the data table.
 

chadster766

Very Senior Member
Look more closely. X axis is clearly labeled in ms. Legend is in the data table.
Yes but not for the bottom chart.

Unless those are also in ms also (which now seem obvious) and no throughtput testing was done.
 

thiggins

Mr. Easy
Staff member
What "bottom chart"?
If you are referring to the "Single Station Throughput" chart on page 2, the x axis is Mbps.
You are correct that one wasn't labeled. I changed the caption to indicate Mbps.
 

Stephen Harrington

Senior Member
And worse, AiMesh doesn't use Ethernet backhaul effectively. So even if you don't need the (Wi-Fi) meshpart of AiMesh and use Ethernet to connect all its nodes, it will give you worse performance than manually converting the routers to APs and configuring them yourself.

Thanks for the very interesting and comprehensive review Jim.

I’ve been experimenting with 4 X RT-AC68U units for my Wifi coverage here at home, either set up as AIMesh Parent AP + 3 Nodes (note my main router is an AC86U hidden away in a cupboard with Wifi turned off - don’t ask) or just with all 4 in normal AP mode. I have wired connectivity/backhaul to everything.

Much as I’d like AIMesh to magically “make it all better”, at this point in the AIMesh dev cycle (and I’ve been playing on and off since the public beta days nearly a year ago) reverting and just running in normal non-AIMesh AP mode seems to give me more consistent results and more control (such as being able to manually spread channel usage around and lock a couple of fixed position IP cameras to a specific AP).

From my own experience for my particular situation AIMesh isn’t anywhere near living up to the marketing hype - for now at least. Be interested to hear other’s experiences.
 
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chadster766

Very Senior Member
What "bottom chart"?
If you are referring to the "Single Station Throughput" chart on page 2, the x axis is Mbps.
You are correct that one wasn't labeled. I changed the caption to indicate Mbps.
Thank you
 

Jim Salter

Regular Contributor
non-AIMesh AP mode seems to give me more consistent results and more control (such as being able to manually spread channel usage around and lock a couple of fixed position IP cameras to a specific AP).

Spreading spectrum so that your APs don't congest with one another will *absolutely* produce better results than what I obtained here.
 

sfx2000

Part of the Furniture
Spreading spectrum so that your APs don't congest with one another will *absolutely* produce better results than what I obtained here.

If possible - absolutely - however, depending on the load of the WLAN, most folks are probably fine on single channel - most of the "body of community knowledge" is wrapped around 802.11b/11g, and 11n/11ac made a lot of improvements, along with 11e.

Otherwise many of the MESH oriented platforms would be in deep trouble ;)
 

Stephen Harrington

Senior Member
Spreading spectrum so that your APs don't congest with one another will *absolutely* produce better results than what I obtained here.

So I surmised from reading around ... which leaves me scratching my head about the basic design goals of AIMesh ... I assume other more sophisticated mesh systems do it differently?
 

OzarkEdge

Part of the Furniture
I've only tried repeater mode... it repeated the router's separate SSIDs. Is an AP similar or do you define SSIDs in the AP? If the later, I suppose you can fully define the AP WLANs independent of the router WLANs.

OE
 

itchyscratchy

Occasional Visitor
I am not keen on the idea of having WPS enabled for my old home with no Ethernet wiring. I guess I need to start wiring the house for a couple WAPs and a capable managed PoE switch, as I’d rather have more router features and an Ethernet backhaul
 

indark

Senior Member
I am not keen on the idea of having WPS enabled for my old home with no Ethernet wiring. I guess I need to start wiring the house for a couple WAPs and a capable managed PoE switch, as I’d rather have more router features and an Ethernet backhaul
WPS is needed for initial setup, or everytime you need to add a node. You can disable it after you set up the ai-mesh.
I disabled the wps and haven't had issue with the mesh.
Though I do set up my router to reboot weekly ;p
 

sfx2000

Part of the Furniture
All - please keep in mind that this is the comments thread for the AIMesh Review...

For support issues, might want to open a new thread, or search for similar threads already running...
 

mactenchi

Occasional Visitor
Don't get me started about Orbi - the bandwidth pig that it is - the hidden backhaul on 5GHz UINII-3, is replicated on 2.4GHz as well, which is pretty harmful in the ISM band when in camps in odd channels - at least there, the 2.4GHz hidden SSID is shared with the Child SSID's - the 5GHz children are limited to UNII-1 and UNII-2 with DFS rules

https://www.snbforums.com/threads/orbi-the-bandwidth-annihilator.47742/

Orbi really is brute force, and not very neighbor friendly - camps on band channels in ISM 2.4GHz so destroys at least two of the common 1/6/11 there, and pretty much takes up bandwidth on UNII-1 and UNII-3 in most places. In a dense environment like Apartments and Condos, Orbi isn't really the right answer, in suburban environments with single family homes, it's still not very friendly there...

anyways - in most of my rants - I do try to provide some backup into to justify things.

I haven't heard anything back from Netgear on the Orbi observations - including the various bugs I've observed on the 802.11 captures.
Orbi does 2.4GHz backhaul even when you're using 5GHz?
 

sfx2000

Part of the Furniture
Orbi does 2.4GHz backhaul even when you're using 5GHz?

Orbi has the hidden SSID for 2.4GHz, which I'm assuming is the backstop if 5GHz doesn't work out for whatever reason - would not be fast, but it would maintain connectivity between the Base and the Satellite nodes.
 

sfx2000

Part of the Furniture
I’ve been experimenting with 4 X RT-AC68U units for my Wifi coverage here at home, either set up as AIMesh Parent AP + 3 Nodes (note my main router is an AC86U hidden away in a cupboard with Wifi turned off - don’t ask) or just with all 4 in normal AP mode. I have wired connectivity/backhaul to everything.

4 AP's - how much floor plan are you attempting to cover - there is such a thing as "too much" - the AP's start to put too much overhead into the WiFi channels if they're too close together.

Much as I’d like AIMesh to magically “make it all better”, at this point in the AIMesh dev cycle (and I’ve been playing on and off since the public beta days nearly a year ago) reverting and just running in normal non-AIMesh AP mode seems to give me more consistent results and more control (such as being able to manually spread channel usage around and lock a couple of fixed position IP cameras to a specific AP).

From my own experience for my particular situation AIMesh isn’t anywhere near living up to the marketing hype - for now at least. Be interested to hear other’s experiences.

AIMesh, or any other multiple point Wiresless System (Orbi/Eero/etc...) - with WiFi - always look at the client's view - that's the last link in the chain... with these MESH type systems, it's also important to look at where the nodes are with each other.... too close, not much benefit, too far, and the link between the nodes becomes the bottleneck...
 

Grisu

Part of the Furniture
please post commands and how to steps?
for 20MHz control channel only
for 40MHz channel and "u" for upper or "l" for lower channel is control channel (somehow reversed logic)
for 80MHz with "/80"
'nvram get wl1_chansps' will give you possible 5G values
36 40 44 48 52 56 60 64 100 104 108 112 116 120 124 128 132 136 140 144 149 153 157 161 165
40u 48u 56u 64u 104u 112u 120u 128u 136u 144u 153u 161u
36l 44l 52l 60l 100l 108l 116l 124l 132l 140l 149l 157l
36/80 40/80 44/80 48/80 56/80 52/80 60/80 64/80 100/80 104/80 108/80 112/80 116/80 132/80 120/80 124/80 136/80 140/80 128/80 144/80 149/80 153/80 157/80 161/80

worked for me without commit (3rd line) too, dont know if needed
SSH to node:
[email protected]:/tmp/home/root# nvram set wl0_chanspec=13u
[email protected]:/tmp/home/root# nvram set wl1_chanspec=128/80
[email protected]:/tmp/home/root# nvram commit
[email protected]:/tmp/home/root# service restart_wireless
 
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whitey019

Regular Contributor
Ok, so my two day experience with AiMesh (86U/68U) is that while it does extend the useful range of the 5G band providing faster speeds to the farthest devices, devices in between the main router (86U) and the node (68U) quite often connect to the node resulting in slower speeds than if a single router was used. Interestingly, several devices connect to the node even when the signal strength is weaker than the main router. The roaming block list, currently limited to 3 devices, doesn't really seem to do much at all. This system would be great if you could actually assign some devices to either the router or the node. With some devices, notebooks, tablets and phones it doesn't matter that they roam and it is actually better that way. But other things, TVs, game consoles and desktop computers work better locked to the faster connection. All settings are default for the most part other than the typical security changes.
 
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OzarkEdge

Part of the Furniture
Ok, so my two day experience with AiMesh (86U/68U) is that while it does extend the useful range of the 5G band providing faster speeds to the farthest devices, devices in between the main router (86U) and the node (68U) quite often connect to the node resulting in slower speeds than if a single router was used. Interestingly, several devices connect to the node even when the signal strength is weaker than the main router. The roaming block list, currently limited to 3 devices, doesn't really seem to do much at all. This system would be great if you could actually assign some devices to either the router or the node. With some things, notebooks, tablets and phones it doesn't matter that they roam and it is actually better that way. But other things, TVs, game consoles and desktop computers work better locked to the faster connection. All settings are default for the most part other than the typical security changes.

I can't help but wonder if your results would be better if Smart Connect node band steering was supported on the 68U even though your described issue is with Roaming Assistant node steering... are you using separate SSIDs? Maybe tweak the RA RSSI thresholds for your layout.

OE
 

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