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Cost not an obstacle, how would you proceed?

Discussion in 'Wireless Buying Advice' started by mmacfn123, Jun 20, 2019.

  1. mmacfn123

    mmacfn123 Occasional Visitor

    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2019
    Messages:
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    Hey all

    So I have a 2 floor 4800 sq foot house and a gigabit cable connection.

    Cable for service comes out at one side of the house and I have RJ 47 running under the house from that spot to the other side.

    If cost was not an huge obstacle and you wanted to get the most performance out of this connection across the home. What would you do?

    1) What cable modem would you buy?

    2) What wireless routers would you go with and how would you connect them?

    3) Would you use a switch or two ?

    What is the best way to set this up?
     
  2. coxhaus

    coxhaus Part of the Furniture

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    texas
    Don't buy a wireless router. With that big of a house you need a network not a wireless router. Buy a wired router and wireless access points. You will need several maybe 4 or 5 wireless APs.

    If it was me I would use Cisco small business gear. There are other brands out there.

    Do you have network drops though out the house for Ethernet? You need to consider where the drops go for the wireless APs and do they match the Ethernet drops? You may need cabling for all this to work.
     
  3. mmacfn123

    mmacfn123 Occasional Visitor

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    Hey

    No only have one RJ47 going to living room no other ethernet drops anywhere.

    question is what exactly do i need? outside of wireless routers i have little experience.

     
  4. L&LD

    L&LD Part of the Furniture

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    Today's wireless routers are great, particularly Asus routers powered by RMerlin firmware. :)

    RT-AC3100 Report https://www.snbforums.com/threads/s...-go-with-the-rt-ac1900p-v3.34748/#post-281391

    I certainly wouldn't recommend 4 or 5 AP's in such a small space. :)

    While the RT-AC3100 excelled in my customers 5K SqFt home, with today's 1Gbps ISP connections, it is not too easy to recommend, except for great range.

    The RT-AC86U may be able to handle the SqFt if it is optimally located (note that the 'AC3100 wasn't, by a long shot).

    The RT-AX88U should easily (as it has been praised for its range and throughput over older routers on numerous occasions in these forums).

    If optimal (centrally located) placement isn't an option, then at the most, 2x RT-AC86U's will suffice. With one as the main router and the other as an AP.

    Switches are optional and depend on what you're connecting, of course.

    The modem I would just use the ISP's supplied unit in Bridged mode. :)

    Of course, RMerlin firmware is recommended for the above setup. Along with a full reset and with a spare USB drive, an amtm setup for a swap file too (as a minimum).

    The following links may help. They can all be found in my signature below but are included here for your convenience. :)


    M&M Config https://www.snbforums.com/threads/n...l-and-manual-configuration.27115/#post-205573

    WPS NVRAM Erase
    https://www.snbforums.com/threads/b...eta-is-now-available.55520/page-9#post-473141

    Sanitize Network
    https://www.snbforums.com/threads/rt-ac66u-slow-wan-to-lan.12973/page-3#post-269410

    Control Channel Set up
    https://www.snbforums.com/threads/a...details-in-the-description.55582/#post-472051

    amtm Step-by-Step
    https://www.snbforums.com/threads/amtm-step-by-step-install-guide-l-ld.56237/#post-483421


    Nuclear Reset https://www.snbforums.com/threads/major-issues-w-rt-ac86u.56342/page-4#post-495710
     
  5. ColinTaylor

    ColinTaylor Part of the Furniture

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    There's no such thing as RJ47. So you probably mean either "Ethernet cable", or "8P8C connector" (commonly referred to as RJ45).
     
    mmacfn123 likes this.
  6. Smokindog

    Smokindog Regular Contributor

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    Location:
    The Great State of Texas
    Couple things I noticed here concern me.

    As to the cable modem, you'll have to tell people more about what your ISP allows and/or requires.

    As to recommendation on routers/APs, how can folks make configuration recommendation with such little information. Sure, you could just presume the 4800 sq ft is equally divided into two squares, one atop the other but without knowing, how could a configuration be established?

    My home is also 2 stories and just a little larger than 4800 sq ft. It is well wired to begin with but I've added. Everything is tied into two 24 port Gb switches in a wiring closet. I use 3 AC3100's in the main house (one up center and two down on the ends), an AC68 in the main garage (4 bay) and an AC68 in a detached bus garage/workshop (two story 50x50). My home is long and narrow and "irregularly shaped" following the terrain. I was originally covering it with 2 AC68's and a couple AC66's that I had that from a previous use. I picked up a TM1900 to hit some dead spots before I "knew of the difficulties" and then I upgraded to the three AC3100's because I wanted more coverage outdoors and they were at a killer price as refurbs. I have pretty much full use of the spectrum.

    Here's what I'd want to know before buying anything.
    1. What does the spectrum congestion look like in the areas you want WiFi coverage? That could change configuration choices. I'd recommend the first step is to download a tool like WiFi Analyzer and walk through the intended areas of WiFi use and write down the current use of spectrum before making any purchases. At least start with a baseline.
    2. HOW do you plan to use WiFi. Before I switched to "streaming" from DirecTV my coverage was fine with the 2 AC68's. However the need for better coverage in more places to cover the ROKU devices forced me to upgrade in the past year.
    3. CAN you run CATx wiring any place through the house? Sounds like you can maybe make a run or two under the house. Is the home pier and beam? Does it have a basement? Can you run things between the floors to the attic (maybe a plenum is accessible)? You did say cost is not necessarily an issue.
    4. What's the construction of the house? Plaster/lathe? wire? sheetrock? ...
    5. What's the age of the house?
    6. What is stamped on sheath of that cable you call out as RJ47? Presuming it's a 4 pair cable it's hopefully CAT5E or "better".
    7. How about some pictures of the wire and a couple quick diagrams of the space (box diagrams of 1st/2nd floors and approximate dimensions work).
    8. What budget do you WANT TO hit? Are you willing to hire someone to run cables if you can't do it yourself?
    9. How important is this. In other words, what level of "hassle" are you willing to accept to get great coverage?
    10. HOW HANDY ARE YOU?
     
    Last edited: Jun 20, 2019
  7. Trip

    Trip Very Senior Member

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    I'm going to play a bit of devil's advocate here because you said, if cost was no obstacle...

    The first, easiest and best option would be to farm this out to the highest-end residential AV/IT shop you can find locally and have them just handle it. Expect to shell out $10-20K or more, but it will be done right and should last a decade+ with no foreseeable bottlenecks in performance or reliability.

    That said, if you were to monkey with all of this yourself, you'd start by back-boning the whole house in OM4 fiber for 10G/40G/100G backhaul scalability when the time comes. That all gets run back to a central wiring closet and rack, complete with the proper cable management and UPS power backup. Then you put in a full L3 switching fabric, preferably enterprise-grade (Cisco, Juniper, HPE, etc.), with a stack-capable "core" in the closet and 10Gb-uplinked multi-Gig access switches at the end of your fiber runs, stashed in recessed wiring cabinets, patched into copper patch panels that serve the Cat6/7 runs to keystone jacks in the rooms in that section of the house. Included in these runs are however many ceiling-based drops you need to blanket the house in enterprise wifi: multi-Gig, Wave 2 AC or pre-AX, cluster-controlled by virtual or appliance-based controllers. Lastly, for your WAN gateway/firewall, you have tons of options from corporate-class firewalls to services routers to x86/Tile/whitebox hardware running *nix distros. Whatever you do, make sure the platform is vetted, and integrates well into your stack.

    So that's what you do if money truly is no object; you skip over all of the consumer gear and methods and go enterprise, best-practice, right off the bat. Short of that, you can certainly play with all-in-one consumer boxes if you want to, but that would imply a budget, or that you just like to tinker. Or both. And given that this is SNB, that is likely true, in which case you can disregard my entire post. I just can't resist whenever someone says "spare no expense". ;)
     
    Last edited: Jun 20, 2019
    mmacfn123, Smokindog and L&LD like this.
  8. mmacfn123

    mmacfn123 Occasional Visitor

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    Eeek sorry, i am a novice :)
     
  9. mmacfn123

    mmacfn123 Occasional Visitor

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    Hey Smoking!

    to answer your questions:

    I am with Cable One. They allow these:

    https://support.cableone.net/hc/en-us/articles/115009158227-Supported-Cable-Modems-Residential-Only

    The one they rent to me currently is the Hitron CGNVM-3582 32x8 with wifi that i have turned off and in bridge mode. Reason i have been looking for another modem is because ive read (here) that stand alone modems have better performance. I was looking at the netgear cm1200 specifically because it seems to have great performance but not sure if there is better out there?

    This is exactly what i need! So basically this is a representation of the home.

    CM refers to where the cable modem comes in. The upstairs is directly above the garage and where the CM is. Most of the size of the home is the lower level. It is not perfectly two squares for sure!

    https://www.dropbox.com/s/0d90r0ht815al1d/Screenshot 2019-06-20 10.31.16.png?dl=0

    Ok so i did that, there is very little interference and only 4 other networks in local houses. Pretty much its all open.

    LOTS of streaming same as you. Essentially, hulu, netflix, apple tv and ROKU, So heavy load on the streaming plus 3 kids who all play fortnight :p

    Maybe under the house (it was a total bitch to do the one RJ45 tho as the space is limited as i get from one end (where CM is) to other. It is pier and beam no basement. I could probably get one to the upstairs

    Sheetrock mostly.

    about 13 years old

    This is what I have

    https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01M8HWC6S/?tag=snbforums-20

    Id like to keep it under 7K (that is what ive budgeted for it). Unfortunately I am in a rural area and so there are no "installers" or network professionals here and nearest is 3 hours away. So that isnt an option really. I do have an electrician who could run cables i believe.

    This is a great question. Essentially here is what i want. I pay for 1 gig speeds and my current setup gets me 250-400 on the 5G wireless connections to my mac pro downstairs. The upstairs seems to be enough to stream the apple tv. I do not have a router up there except for an orbi satellite. What i want is effectively this:

    Hit reasonable wifi speeds by using the most appropriate equipment to do so

    Have many ports (router or switch) in order to plug in directly (if thats the best way to do it) devices like apply tv amazon etc to get best speeds to those devices.

    I would say i am capable depending on the job.
     
  10. mmacfn123

    mmacfn123 Occasional Visitor

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    Touche!

    Unfortunately in my area there are not network professional services. I am pretty rural.

    So anything I do will mostly have to be done by myself.

    What you describe seems to be alot of overkill for what I need :) I simply want to get the best out of the 1 gig connection that i have in as much of the home as i can. Currently only hitting between 200-300 (sometimes 150-200) maybe 10 feet from my wireless router on 5G. So i feel it could be much much better. I just do not know where to start

     
  11. MichaelCG

    MichaelCG Very Senior Member

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    Location:
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    For the right amount of money, that professional installer will make the journey to your house to cable and set it all up. An electrician may be able to pull cable for you, just make sure they do know how low voltage stuff works. Some electricians do...some don't. I had one who wanted to snip a cable and tee in another run not understanding it didn't work that way.

    My house quite a bit smaller, and there is no way a single device could possibly cover all corners of the house properly.
    #1 - I don't want a funky looking device sitting in the middle of my living room since it is the most central part of the house
    #2 - I don't want just single client performance, I want to make sure 5 or 6 devices could be doing 50Mbps streams concurrently

    With that in mind, if you really want to take advantage of 1Gbps Internet...which pretty much very few people "really" need...you will want multiple wired APs providing service across the property. I have 1Gbps Internet as well and rarely ever do we use more than 50Mbps at a time unless I am downloading an ISO image. But for $20 more a month, why not have 1Gbps instead of 100Mbps? :)

    What you need to decide is where will your wireless clients be located and make sure you have an AP nearby with no more than 1 or 2 walls/floors between. The less obstacles, the better performance will usually be. Keep in mind as you add more APs, the complexity of tuning power levels comes into play to try to get your clients to roam properly between APs.

    You say hitting 200-300Mbps on a wireless device? That sounds pretty good to me. I'm sure your Mac can hit higher with the right gear, but most of your other devices are probably 1x1 or 2x2 devices and are unlikely to go much faster.

    I can hit just shy of 400Mbps while sitting in my living room using my HP laptop with 2x2 AC. If I need faster than that for large file transfers, I walk to the basement and plug in a cable. I can usually get a minimum of 200Mbps just about anywhere inside of my house with my laptop. My phones are usually closer to 100-150Mbps which is way more than a phone will ever need. I know for sure we can handle 3-4 Netflix streams at a time as well as file transfers from the laptop without any issues at all since the clients are distributed across 3 APs. No matter what my wife or guests are doing upstairs, they have zero impact to what my WiFi performance is down in my office since I have a dedicated AP.

    So your original question:
    1) What cable modem would you buy?
    - have no advice here...I'm on Fiber so no modem

    2) What wireless routers would you go with and how would you connect them?
    - wouldn't use a wireless router, would go with a dedicated router and dedicated AP
    Router - If not doing anything fancy, just use the ISP router and disable the WiFi
    Router - Otherwise....well...yeah, not sure since I don't know what devices can handle 1Gbps
    Router - I run an x86 box running SophosXG for more advanced features (previously ran pfSense)
    AP - UniFi, Cisco, and several others have decent priced options available
    AP - look for 3x3 capable AC devices if you want to improve your speeds on your Mac
    AP - otherwise 2x2 capable AC devices are probably good enough for the rest of the house

    3) Would you use a switch or two ?
    - this all depends on where you have network drops and the distances on them
    - hard wire as much as you can
    - decide if you need PoE to power APs
     
    Smokindog likes this.
  12. Smokindog

    Smokindog Regular Contributor

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    Location:
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    Where does the "upstairs" sit relative to the "downstairs"? What are the approximate length/width of those two "boxes" in your drawing? Where does the cable you pulled run from/two? Where in those boxes to you need solid WiFi coverage for ROKUs/... and other devices?
     
  13. mmacfn123

    mmacfn123 Occasional Visitor

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    Hey

    Upstairs is the entire side of the house where garage is. Id say house main floor is 80x50 as the main floor is about 4000 of the house

    cable runs from CM to about middle of other side. solid wifi pretty much all of it

     
  14. Smokindog

    Smokindog Regular Contributor

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    Wished you had said earlier that you had pretty solid coverage throughout the house! @MichaelCG gave you a pretty thorough run down.

    Where is your current WiFi AP? Is it the one provided by CableOne (integrated)?

    Sounds like you probably could get by with one AP upstairs (since you can run a wire up there) and one in the center of the house. OR just begin with one by the Modem and one in the center of the house. What is the "demand" upstairs beyond the AppleTV you mentioned? TVs/ROKUs/laptops/bedrooms/... What's up there?

    Do you plan to just buy a modem or one with a router/WiFi. Will you bridge or double NAT if the latter? I've never had much luck with using Bridge from a performance viewpoint and have always used double NAT.

    I see the list of Gb options here. https://support.cableone.net/hc/en-...Which-Cable-Modems-are-Supported-for-GigaONE-

    I don't have a modem either so I'm sure there are other threads of folks here that can advise.

    I personally don't care for Netgear stuff but that's just me.

    @L&LD gave you a pretty good run down of the ASUS options. I personally would steer clear of the AX stuff until they mature for a product cycle.

    I'd put some of the $$ to the side waiting for the AX stuff to mature and instead of 2 AC86Us as @L&LD recommended put one by the cable modem to handle the Gb interface and something "lesser" in the center of the house where you ran the cable and keep open an optional for one to go upstairs if you need it down the road.

    IF you run cables, run 2 or 3. Buy a bulk roll ($100 for 1000 feet - https://www.monoprice.com/search/index?keyword=cat6&categoryPath2_uFilter=Bulk Networking Cables&TotalProducts=139) and learn how to terminate cables (or your installer should have the tools and knowledge). The labor is the expensive part here!

    I just edited this to remove my reference to the AC68 when I saw the price of the AC86 2 pack from newegg. Unless you're willing to try refurbs as I am.......

    Cable modem
    |
    v
    AC86U -> CAT6 you ran -> (AC86U or other)
    |
    | optional if coverage doesn't meet your needs
    v
    CAT 6 to upstairs
    |
    v
    (AC86U or other)

    I've been happy with my AC68's and AC3100's. Heck, even the AC66's still serve well for outside APs and in my nieces new place. :)
     
    Last edited: Jun 20, 2019
  15. coxhaus

    coxhaus Part of the Furniture

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    Using 4 or 5 APs creates a higher density platform for parties and what not. People with really large homes tend to have large parties. But your choice. I use 3 APs in a 3300 square foot home which works well for me. I would never use routers as APs. I want APs with some form of controller for the APs.
     
  16. RogerSC

    RogerSC Part of the Furniture

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    My house isn't as big as yours, but I'm doing fine with a 3-node eero mesh wireless system. You don't need to add wires to connect the nodes, the nodes use wireless backhaul. And each node has 3 radios to gave nice wireless backhaul bandwidth. You're not going to get 1Gbps wireless, but you'll get plenty of bandwidth (2x2, again). And you'll have good wireless coverage all over your house. If you get all "Pro"'s rather than one Pro and a couple of beacons, you'll can also have wired ports where you can attach switches for any clients that you have that require (or do better with) wired connections. The look of the nodes will not detract from your house, they're low-profile and nicely designed to blend in with home decor rather than standing out.

    Anyways, something to consider. I've been using the eero for about 1.5 years now, and the firmware just keeps getting better. There's a couple of missing features, but the mesh system operates very well, very reliably, you really don't miss those features. Check it out, if you haven't already.
     
  17. mmacfn123

    mmacfn123 Occasional Visitor

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    Hey Roger!

    Thanks for the info! So what i am concerned about the MESH systems is degrading speeds. I am generally getting 150-250 around my house via 2 wireless networks from my gigbit connection.

    What are you getting generally and what is the connection you have?

     
  18. RogerSC

    RogerSC Part of the Furniture

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    At the moment, I have 100/100 fiber from my ISP. This is provisioned at about 120/120, and is always around that. Never see less than 100/100. So my wired connections are about 120/120. Latency is about 6ms. Wireless connections are around the same, maybe a 2->3 Mbps less, and a little more latency, 2->3 ms. more, but like I said, great wireless throughout my house.

    Can't say how this would work for you, but I don't find that the mesh slows things down at all for me, in fact it gives me higher speed than I've had before. I would expect that for you, given your current speeds, as well. By the way, the 100/100 speed tier provides plenty of bandwidth to meet all of our internet needs...we've not run short of internet, and we are streaming our TV, along with the usual mobile clients, ioT stuff, computers, and so on. No problems. Since we have an OTA TV antenna, we don't even get near our ISP's data cap. I had originally been enamored with the opportunity to have 1Gb. internet, but decided to give the 100/100 a try, and it works well for us. Saves us about $40/month, but you're not concerned about cost.

    I've also added MoCA 2.0 (uses the TV coax cable in your walls for carrying ethernet, so gives you "wired-equivalent" connections) for connecting the remote eero nodes to the gateway. When that's in use, I get my full ISP provisioned speeds via wireless, with another couple of ms of latency from the MoCA adapters. When the MoCA is not in use, as I said, a couple of Mbps. below our ISP's provisioned speed. Really happy with the eeros, they've made wifi pretty much bullet-proof. Something that I don't have to think about.
     
  19. mmacfn123

    mmacfn123 Occasional Visitor

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    Well

    I ordered the eero Pro WiFi System (Set of 3 eero Pros) – 2nd Generation based on this and the other recommendations for eero ive read over the past week. Ill try them and see how it goes since amazon allows me to send em back easily if they dont work better.

    Now this moca 2.0 is interesting. I have coax cable that all comes to a main junction box in the garage so i could easily connect to that i think. Only coax used is the one line going into the cable modem. The coax in the house is probably 10-15 years old not sure if that would matter? I had never heard of this option before would have been much easier than running ethernet cable under the house to one end like i did. Is it worse tho?

    Do you have any particular recommendations for the MOCA 2.0 or a really good resource for me to read about it? Im google searching as we speak.

     
  20. mmacfn123

    mmacfn123 Occasional Visitor

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    Ahh

    I have directtv. Apparently no good with MOCA 2.0