Seeking best option to add AiMesh to an existing RT-AC88U?

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daveyjuan

New Around Here
Hi everyone,

We've had a Asus RT-AC88U for 6 months now and we have been impressed by its speed.
However, as expected, it cannot cover a 5 bedroom, 3 storey brick house.

I'm thinking to make the RT-AC88U the base unit and add another 2 or even 3 AiMesh units.

All 8 ports from the RT-AC88U are wired directly to rooms throughout the house, so I assume it makes sense to wire the AiMesh additional units?

We're looking at the Asus XD4, XT8 or AX6100.

What Asus units would you recommend please? And what are the trade off for each please?

Jon ("Wireless novice!")
 

smbodie

New Around Here
I have the AC88U as main and an old AC68U as my mesh and it covers a large footprint. Since I don't have anything needing the speed of AX this works fine for me and I didn't spend a bundle. I used to run 2 of the AC68Us in a mesh setup until upgrading with the AC88U. Tried to run both the 68Us as mesh slaves to the 88U but that caused lots of issues so I dropped the older one and it's been fine since. You'll need the ethernet backhaul to run the new firmware but sounds like your going to do that anyway.

Just throwing another "cheap" option out there to consider.
 

Moabdave

Regular Contributor
I'm in a similar situation, big old historic house with thick surprise filled walls. I had to use 3 routers as well. It's my understanding that when you have 3 routers in an AIMesh setup, it is the main that does the bulk of the work and the processor of the 2 satellite nodes sits mostly idle. As such, as I understand it you want the main AP to have the most processing power. So if you are considering an AX series router you'd likely want that one to be the main. In my case all 3 are AC serious routers.
 

alba666

Regular Contributor
Your AX router needs to be the main unit. Unless you want to buy an AX88 (8 LAN ports) and make the AC88 the node, stick with an budget friendly AC unit for the remote node (that can run Merlin).
 

daveyjuan

New Around Here
Thanks everyone for your quick replies.

So what I'm hearing is invest in 1 or 2 cheaper AC86U units, wire them back to the AC88U and run them both as AiMesh nodes?
Did I get that right please?

And don't even consider Asus XD4, XT8 or AX6100?
 

daveyjuan

New Around Here
Your AX router needs to be the main unit. Unless you want to buy an AX88 (8 LAN ports) and make the AC88 the node, stick with an budget friendly AC unit for the remote node (that can run Merlin).
Thanks for the reply - so my AC88U cannot act as a base unit and link to Asus XD4, XT8 or AX6100?

It has to be a AX88U as a base until to link to 1 of those 3?

Sorry if I'm being dumb here.
 

smbodie

New Around Here
You want the newest and most powerful router to be the main router. Some folks have issues mixing AC and AX in a mesh system while I think it works fine for others. The AC88U is older tech than any AX and even the AC86U you mentioned above (you may have meant 68U vs 86U). The key is having the router with the strongest CPU and most memory as the main router since it is doing most of the work and runs the gui. There are other caveats if you are using a wireless backhaul but I won't go there.
 

daveyjuan

New Around Here
You want the newest and most powerful router to be the main router. Some folks have issues mixing AC and AX in a mesh system while I think it works fine for others. The AC88U is older tech than any AX and even the AC86U you mentioned above (you may have meant 68U vs 86U). The key is having the router with the strongest CPU and most memory as the main router since it is doing most of the work and runs the gui. There are other caveats if you are using a wireless backhaul but I won't go there.
Thanks smbodie,

So given that I'm not up for switching out the AC88U anytime soon, the safest option is to invest in 1 or 2 AC68Us?
Has anyone run a AC88U with 2 AC68Us using AiMesh?
Or do you think your issue of not being able to run 2 mesh slaves was caused by the older of the 2 x 68U units?
And finally, it is safer to ignore any other ideas or hardware?

Many thanks, J
 

smbodie

New Around Here
I would start with one 68U and see how you do. I spent months looking at connections, speeds, wifi settings, firmwares, nuclear resets, power adjustments, etc with no gains. Rewired the house with nice shielded cables but still had issues with wifi cams dropping, weird client bindings, etc. While doing the wiring I substituted a switch in place of the one 68U and viola', all my issues vanished. Of course after I got the new cable done I put the router back in and every issue started right back up. I'm going to believe that it was the router going bad but the more I've read and understand, I now know too much can be a very bad thing.

I can only speak for my setup, that it works very well for my needs and I didn't spend a fortune on it. I do recommend doing plenty of research regardless the direction you go.
 

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