AX88 Wired AIMESH 2xAC5300 - time to upgrade the AC5300

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aex.perez

Regular Contributor
Currently have a AX88 as the main router with 2xAC5300's wired AIMESH. Using the AC5300's in the bedrooms both to extend WiFi and to leverage the 4 ports for hardwired connected devices. Looking to replace the AC based routers to better leverage WPA2/WPA3, 160Mhz, WiFi 6. All devices on Merlin, the AC5300's running SCMerlin and scheduled LED On/Off. Initially thought a pair of AX92's might do the trick, but those are not on @Merlin supported list. Not sure which to go with now.

Next best option?
 

chichow

Regular Contributor
It's my understanding that there is no real advantage to running Merlin on the AiMesh nodes. So just run Merlin on the main router and stock Asus on the nodes.
So get whatever you want for those nodes.
 

aex.perez

Regular Contributor
That's my understanding as well. Wifi/AIMESH is closed source from my understanding. If I didn't have to worry about scripting, I'd be on the same page.

But the AC5300's are in the bedrooms and I do have SCMerlin on them in case I need to restart a service and I schedule the On at 9AM, Off at 9PM LEDs on the router to keep my wife and son happy. So running Merlin FW is preferred so as not to lose those capabilities.
 

chichow

Regular Contributor
I got a performance boost on Wifi 6 for a desktop in an office room like perhaps an extra 150Mbps over my AC router. And I supposed that's helpful when I am doing a file copy back to a file server. But otherwise even if I were to stream some 4K file from the file server, from an end user perspective, I don't think I would feel a difference.
My need for the additional AX devices were more for range coverage rather than throughput.

So I guess my point is - what are the devices in the bedrooms that are going to benefit from the AX devices and have you checked your stats to see if there would be an actual real world benefit?
 

chichow

Regular Contributor
so just having the LEDs off all the time is not an option?

FWIW I am happy enough with my RT-AX68U which Merlin does support and I think the RT-AX68U is cheaper when it came out than what the AC-5300 was selling for initially.

RT-AX68U is also much smaller than the AC5300
 

aex.perez

Regular Contributor
So anything, particularly the TV's, AT&Ttv box are all hardwired. Bandwidth no the primary reason. WPA2/3 and 160mhz and compatibility AX vs AC are more important. Nest devices, Amazon ECHO devices, iPhones, Android Phones/Tablets, not driving a lot of bandwidth consumption. But at the AX using WPA2/3 and moving to the bedrooms moving to on of the AC, have restart WiFi on the device to connect to them as they don't support WPA2/3. Plus certain channels in the 5Ghz range aren't available and forget about 160Mhz. Will look at the AX68U's
 

chichow

Regular Contributor
"But at the AX using WPA2/3 and moving to the bedrooms moving to on of the AC, have restart WiFi on the device to connect to them as they don't support WPA2/3."

ah you mean you using something like WPA3 on the main router but when you have a iphone that moves over to a AC AiMesh node, then the iphone doesn't seamlessly move over because of the WPA3? and you have to wifi on and off on the iphone?
 

chichow

Regular Contributor
note: since you have the luxury of hardwire, I see no point of the AX92 which is $$$ but tri band. hence the cheaper AX68U (dual band)
 

aex.perez

Regular Contributor
"But at the AX using WPA2/3 and moving to the bedrooms moving to on of the AC, have restart WiFi on the device to connect to them as they don't support WPA2/3."

ah you mean you using something like WPA3 on the main router but when you have a iphone that moves over to a AC AiMesh node, then the iphone doesn't seamlessly move over because of the WPA3? and you have to wifi on and off on the iphone?
Exactly, and it's a little worse in that I end up flipping WiFi on the Iphone off/on every few minutes. Need to adjust WiFi setting to extend threshold/interval setting to help mitigate. With symmetrical Gig AT&T not expecting getting more than that, and it's just an iPhone. This is more about interoperability and a little future proofing than bandwidth/performance. To that end, my Dell laptop with the Killer AX NIC connects to the AX88 with 802.1ax but and I suspect because the AC routers are in the mesh, and limiting the channels I can use and not supporting 160Ghz. When using AX I get 1200/200 on the laptop, which works fine unless I'm in a Zoom/WebEx/Msft Teams meeting and presenting.
 

aex.perez

Regular Contributor
Did the swap, AX88u main router with two AX86u's replacing the AC5300's. Am now able to get WPA2/WPA3 but more importantly I can now get all the 5Ghz channels. I'm on channel 36, getting 160mhz of bandwidth. So you think I'd be jumping for joy. Nope.

Have tried toggling every setting on the router and NIC (Intel Killer WiFi 6 NIC) card, aligning them, making them different. No matter what I do my Wifi 802.1ax is atrocious. Finally gave up, got it set for 802.11ac again and getting good wifi. WIFI Radar shows correct channel, bandwidth but it slow as 802.11b. Not sure what's going on, if anyone has a clue please share. Tried everything that's come up on the subject in these forums...
 

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