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NETGEAR Arlo Reviewed

Discussion in 'Smart Home Article Discussions' started by trek_520, May 23, 2015.

  1. trek_520

    trek_520 Regular Contributor

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2010
    Messages:
    72
    Thanks very much for the solid review.

    How does Arlo work within your existing Wi-Fi setup? Does it sit on the same channel as your current router? Can you pick the channel it broadcasts on? I have been reading some people having issues with there Wi-Fi after they installed these. Somebody blamed it on Arlo and Sonos not working well together. Any thoughts?
     
  2. sdeleeuw

    sdeleeuw Regular Contributor

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2010
    Messages:
    113
    Thanks for the question. The response I got from NETGEAR on this very same question was:

    1)If the base station detects another access point nearby, it will choose the same channel as the access point that is closest (based on received signal strength). This provides better performance when two APs are placed next to each other.

    2) If the base station does not detect an access point within 20ft or so, it will then follow normal Auto Channel Selection to detect and select the channel with the least interference and potentially best WiFi performance.

    You can't pick Arlo's channel and it creates its own wireless network, separate from yours. In my case it picked the exact channel as the access point it was sitting right next to, like NETGEAR specified would happen. They do this so the two networks can talk and wait for each other vs just having cross-talk on conflicting channels. I didn't see wifi issues after installing Arlo, the only time the Arlo network is transmitting is when video is being recorded or displayed (on motion or manual viewing).

    I guess theoretically if someone had very heavy Sonos activity and lots of Arlo cameras that were constantly seeing motion there could be wi-fi issues, I would think it would take a lot more than 2 cameras to realize that however and that's all I had to test with. The other unknown is I don't have Sonos, Sonos operates on its own 2.4GHz mesh network they call "SonosNet". Each Sonos device expands the Sonos network vs having a single access point. From the limited exposure I've had to Sonos, you can change its channel. I don't know if Arlo would identify SonosNet as a wireless network and follow its channel or not.

    I also don't know the traffic patterns of Sonos, but I do know with a competitor like Logitech Media Server and Squeezeplayers, most of the traffic happens as a new song is played, with a small amount of residual traffic during playback to keep the players in sync, so ongoing traffic is not high even while using it. If someone had Sonos, Arlo and their own wireless network, I guess there could be a possibility that the 3 networks were conflicting, but theoretically the conflict should be resolvable.
     
  3. trek_520

    trek_520 Regular Contributor

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2010
    Messages:
    72
    Thank you very much for your response. I am somewhat surprised that Netgear would pick the same channel as your access point to promote co-channel interference on purpose. I was always believed that was a bad thing. I get that it is better than adjacent channel interference, but if I only have my AP/Router on Channel 1 - why not use 6 or 11 if they are wide open? Better for both networks to be on dedicated channels - then no interference would occur i.e. waiting to talk. I can tell you that Sonos is loud and noisy from a Wi-Fi perspective.

    I would think it would be beneficial for to have the ability to change the channel Arlo broadcasts on like Sonos does. Also, Sonos initially fought this, but has finally yielded to letting people use their existing Wi-Fi infrastructure with Sonos. I think Arlo should consider the same. Default should be as it is today, but giving people the choice to configure it to best fit there environment makes sense at least to me.

    Further - I wish all these guys doing this type of system - Sonos and Arlo would put 5GHz radios in there devices. AC would be great as well. Then we could have the flexibility using more, less cluttered frequencies.

    Just my 2 cents.
     
  4. thiggins

    thiggins Mr. Easy Staff Member

    Joined:
    May 18, 2008
    Messages:
    14,155
    Sonos runs on Sonosnet, which is a mesh wireless system. Mesh systems are quite "chatty" due to the information nodes need to exchange to make mesh work.

    Arlo is using straight Wi-Fi, albeit optimized to save camera power. Putting Arlo's network on the same channel as the "house" Wi-Fi lets both AP's "hear" each other very clearly and best coordinate airtime use.

    As Scott noted, Arlo's network is quiet most of the time, so not likely to cause Wi-Fi interference.
     
  5. nest2

    nest2 New Around Here

    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2015
    Messages:
    1
    Looking to buy home surveillance camera. Is Arlo Smart Home Review worth that price? About $180 on amazon.
     
    Last edited: Dec 14, 2015
  6. thiggins

    thiggins Mr. Easy Staff Member

    Joined:
    May 18, 2008
    Messages:
    14,155
    I bought one and ended up returning it. Main reason was its inability to control the motion detection zones.