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NETGEAR Introduces Orbi Wi-Fi Mesh system

Discussion in 'NETGEAR AC Wireless' started by thiggins, Aug 22, 2016.

  1. thiggins

    thiggins Mr. Easy Staff Member

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    Capture.JPG
    NETGEAR today introduced its Orbi High-performance AC3000 Tri-band WiFi System. Available next month at a $399.99 MSRP, Orbi is aimed squarely at quashing "mesh Wi-Fi" upstarts eero, Luma and Amplifi before they reach critical mass.

    Orbi adopts a router, satellite architecture using a dedicated 4x4 802.11ac 5 GHz connection between the two units and separate 2x2 AC1200 class 5 GHz and 2.4 GHz radios for device connections. The dedicated backhaul connection eliminates the problem of balancing client and backhaul bandwidth demands that competing "mesh" Wi-Fi systems have.
    orbi.jpg
    A kit of one router and satellite will be available at launch next month. But NETGEAR plans to make the router and satellite available separately, each at $249.99 MSRP. The company said the system will initially support up to two satellites and have only browser-based setup at launch. But support for up to five satellites and app-based setup is planned in future firmware releases.

    Band-steering will also be supported at launch both for devices supporting 802.11k and v and those that do not. AP steering / roaming and transmit power adjust will come in future releases as more satellites are supported. MU-MIMO is also supported on both backhaul and device connections.

    Both router and satellite have four Gigabit Ethernet ports, with one on the router dedicated to WAN connection. The USB 2.0 port does not support storage sharing.

    orbi_conns.jpg
    Check NETGEAR's Orbi page for more information.
     
    Julio Urquidi likes this.
  2. TheLostSwede

    TheLostSwede Regular Contributor

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    How does it even remotely make sense to use the 1733Mbps, short range 5GHz radio to connect the two devices to each other? This seems to be QCA based, but Broadcom claims 1000Mbps on 2.4GHz, which would make a lot more sense for linking these type of devices, as you get decent range so you can place the "satellite" at some distance from the main unit. In fact this would be useless in my home, as i can't go up or down a single floor with 5GHz due to an excess amount of steel in the floors...
     
  3. thiggins

    thiggins Mr. Easy Staff Member

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    Well, in your case, any system "mesh", extender or WDS won't work, right?

    By using 4x4, they should get some additional link gain that other 2x2 systems won't have. I would think 2.4 GHz is too crowded to get a decent link. 1024 QAM can't even hit full link rate in the same room. With any distance between AP and STA, they will need to fall back to lower MCS rates. 1000 Mbps also requires 40 MHz in 2.4 GHz, which is a non-starter.
     
  4. RMerlin

    RMerlin Part of the Furniture

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    Nobody ever succeeded in getting a 1 Gbps link with NitroQAM. And since it's the 2.4 GHz band, you can effectively divide this by two, as it's also next to impossible to maintain a reliable 40 MHz connection on the 2.4 GHz band in today's crowded space.

    5 GHz might make sense as long you don't put the satellites too far away from the primary router.
     
  5. RMerlin

    RMerlin Part of the Furniture

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    MU-MIMO on the backhaul would only make sense if satellites were only 2x2, right? In which case, this might be a good use for MU-MIMO (provided you have multiple satellites).
     
  6. Razor512

    Razor512 Senior Member

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    I wonder, is there any standard to a channel width wider than 40MHz on the 2.4 GHz band? It may be useful for getting better throughput, while possibly keeping it's range.
     
  7. thiggins

    thiggins Mr. Easy Staff Member

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    No. With only three non-overlapping channels, 40 MHz is pushing it.
     
  8. mactenchi

    mactenchi New Around Here

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    I wonder if they will support a wired link between router and satellite.
     
  9. pete y testing

    pete y testing Very Senior Member

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    its not supported as yet but is being considered for a future update

    the max rate on 2.4 gig is 400M and on 5 gig its 867M on the lower channels only , the upper channel bandwidth is used for the backhaul

    ---------------------------

    and since its been announced i can now tell you it works as its advertised , its aim is to give a whole house wifi coverage and this it does and does it very well ( yes i was on the beta test team )

    i now have my full speed 100/40M fiber connection available no matter where i am in the house via wifi and up till now that wasnt achievable even with the likes of the asus rt-ac88u and other high end AC single point transmission routers

    when the beta test group was asked if this solution worked for the the feedback was well over 80% suggested it did for them and work out of the box even in beta stage

    its still got that netgear gui which im no fan of and have suggested changes that may or may not be looked at

    this is what the mass want in a wifi system its simple , its set and forget , its ascetically pleasing and it just works

    a neat point here is the router can be run in AP mode while still using the sat and thus this can be added to an existing wireless router and not create any dual nat situations

    i also see in the advertising that they intend to release them as a stand alone router and single sat units so you can add more sat's as needed

    the question is will anyone wanting a plug and play whole wifi solution pay $300 , its is 2 devices and RRP is never what we see on the street , but will the price tag scare ppl of ?
     
    Last edited: Aug 22, 2016
    abailey and mactenchi like this.
  10. RMerlin

    RMerlin Part of the Furniture

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    I stopped speculating what the people might find to be "too much", ever since AC5300 routers appeared on the market.
     
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  11. mdgm

    mdgm Regular Contributor

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    The 2.4 Ghz band is quite congested in places so using that for connecting the satellite to the router was never going to be an option.

    One possible configuration would be to put the router in a fairly central location in the home. However it does need a wired connection to your modem so this may not be practical.

    So more commonly you would connect the router to the modem at one end of the house and put the satellite in a central location in the middle of the house. Additional satellites would enable you to cover a larger area.

    The more feedback that is received requesting a feature in general the more likely it is to be added.

    Personally, a wired link does sound nice. I already have a lot of ethernet wiring at home and could leverage that. But in most cases a wired link shouldn't be necessary. I'm sure I could use it without needing a wired link between the Orbi router and satellite.
     
    Last edited: Aug 23, 2016
  12. kvic

    kvic Very Senior Member

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    That only benefits one way. Not a good engineering either.

    imo the WiFi mesh system doesn't make sense. The backhaul must be non WiFi technology with high penetration. It's a little ironic to be frank someone suggests connecting two by wire.
     
  13. pete y testing

    pete y testing Very Senior Member

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    if you define what mesh means its actually not the case for the netgear and im puzzled why the word mesh was used

    the term mesh means they communicate with each other as well as other nodes , where as i believe the sat's will only connect back to the main router via the back haul and not the other sats
     
  14. pete y testing

    pete y testing Very Senior Member

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    i can assure you the 5 gig backhaul does have very good penetration

    floor plan.JPG

    see the above , the orbi was tested in location A , the sat was placed in the void in location D with max sync across the backbone at a distance of about 15 meters and quite a few walls inbetween
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 23, 2016
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  15. kvic

    kvic Very Senior Member

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    Thanks for the illustration.

    For better penetrations, vendors have to compete on antenna designs. Dont know if the early birds have breakthrough on it. Again utilizing WiFi bands for intra-node communication (the backhaul) leave less bandwidth for user devices. And in places with WiFi mesh installed, likely to find other WiFi mesh there. Further congest the available bands. Sound like niche product category. Call me skeptics of WiFi mesh for the time being. lol
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 23, 2016
  16. mdgm

    mdgm Regular Contributor

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    But will you have all the devices in the same area of the house? Chances are you probably will have some devices connecting to one of the router/satellites and some to another of the router/satellites.
     
  17. kvic

    kvic Very Senior Member

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    Hmm...I went through the four "homes" illustrated on eero's homepage. All do not look like having bandwidth congestion nearby. lol. I've to wonder why no ethernet cable installed in those home's. If they do, why people have to choose a WiFi mesh system. For eero's credit, it can use ethernet as backhaul link.

    Seems to me the current WiFi mesh system is a wireless controller + 1 or more APs + possibility of backhaul link using WiFi bands...in a user friendly way. Consumer techs change fast. I usually got the trend wrong.
     
  18. Darcy

    Darcy Regular Contributor

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    Looks interesting. Goes on sale in September with 2 units(Router and satellite) for $399. Has 3 wireless radios with one dedicated for the router to satellite connection. Netgear claims this will eliminate the speed being cut in half for devices connected to the satellite. Any thoughts?


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
  19. mdgm

    mdgm Regular Contributor

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    Most users would find the Internet connection speed is the bottleneck rather than having a huge number of Wi-Fi devices.

    Anyway that other brand you mentioned is dual-band so if you'd end up congested on the tri-band Orbi you'd also be congested on that alternative.
     
  20. pete y testing

    pete y testing Very Senior Member

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    and here is the point the orbi is not a mesh system , its not indicated in the advertising as mesh and its technically not a mesh system

    it is advertised as a whole home wifi solution , its designed for those that dont have ethernet installed
     

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