Which devices should I put on 2.4 GHz?

  • ATTENTION! As of November 1, 2020, you are not able to reply to threads 6 months after the thread is opened if there are more than 500 posts in the thread.
    Threads will not be locked, so posts may still be edited by their authors.
    Just start a new thread on the topic to post if you get an error message when trying to reply to a thread.

willyburz

Regular Contributor
Running 2 ssid's, and a 2.4 guest. I run seperate SSID and default to 5ghz on priority with a hard switch over at extreme distance to 2.4.

My old school of AC thinking was low priority devices dump on 2.4 and high priority place on 5ghz.

Is this still true, or should we be placing everything on 5ghz now, because the newer routers can keep the bandwidth/speed up across multiple clients, regardless of their max speed?! Does putting everything on 5ghz risk slowing down priority devices?
 
Last edited:

Make WiFi Great Again

Regular Contributor
i would like to know as well because i had always heard that wifi devices only run as fast as the slowest device in the group. is that what the b/g protection check mark is for?

so i tend to aggregate my slower and infrequently used IOT type things on 2.4 and more bandwidth hungry devices on the 5g.
 

thiggins

Mr. Easy
Staff member
AC and AX routers do a better job of maximizing total throughput for mixes of "fast" and "slow" devices than N class products did.

But, yes, slower devices can eat up more airtime than faster. But "slow" devices can be your "faster" ones that are farther away from your router.

All that said, it's still good practice to put IoT type devices on 2.4 GHz, IMO.
 

willyburz

Regular Contributor
Currently I have my Next mini speakers, thermostat, and printer on 2.4, all others main chromebooks including one being ax, pixel phones, fire tab, tendo switch, and directv on 5g. The rest of my main consoles are hardwired.

Pretty much all are AC and one AX client.
 

thiggins

Mr. Easy
Staff member
Distance from AP will matter more than # of streams. But you should be ok. Airtime contention occurs only when devices are active. So the biggest effect could be from the speakers, when they are active, if they are far away from AP. But I doubt you'd notice if you moved them to 5 GHz since bandwidth demand from audio is so low.
 

willyburz

Regular Contributor
But do slower ac devices impact higher speed ac or ax devices when all connected?

I understand the old N vs. AC, but now with having all ac and ax, are there speed impacts at all?! For example, If my device currently pulls 585-710 speed windows, and I have a fire tablet and something else that are slower devices on the same 5g, do they take away the ability to maintain the max throughput on that primary device or other faster devices? I'm on a gig line, so just trying to understand things a bit more on this. Or am I overthinking this?
 

dscline

Regular Contributor
I have multiple routers in my house, they all share a common SSID & password for the 5ghz band for the most seamless roaming, and they all have different SSIDs for 2.4ghz. All IoT devices are connected to the closest 2.4, since they don't move, all phones, laptops, etc. connect to 5ghz. The only exception is the TV/chromecast in the kitchen. They're on 5ghz, because 2.4 tends to drop when the microwave is on. You hate to lose your groove just because you're cooking a potato.
 
Last edited:

thiggins

Mr. Easy
Staff member
@willyburz You are overthinking a bit. As I said before, slower devices use more airtime than faster ones. The question is whether there is enough airtime available.

Those high new AX rates require VERY strong signals. As signal levels drop, modulation schemes change. At low signal levels that fancy new Wi-Fi 6 phone is likely linked at sub 100 Mbps rates. At that point, it's eating up a lot of airtime if, say, it's trying to download a Linux distro.

If you really have a device that needs a constant 800 Mbps stream, then it won't take much for slower devices to affect it. But there are very few applications that require even a 20-30 Mbps rate (4k streams, for instance). But even those don't present a constant load.

If all your devices can get the bandwidth they need when they need it, then don't worry. If some devices struggle during busy times, it's likely to be those with lower signal levels
 

willyburz

Regular Contributor
Word! I have strong signals, just didn't want for example my daughters fire tab on 5g to mess with 4k streaming, etc. on other priority devices, while all clients are working the router at once. 10-14 clients on 5g, 4-6 on 2.4

I have PLENTY internet speed, I was just worried it might mess with things on the wifi side in performance. Just making sure I'm not missing something on the AX86U in what/how I connect the devices. I have 160mhz locked in on the 5g, as clean a channel I can get set, and will let the devices do their thing. I'll keep the printer, thermostat and nest minis on 2.4, and the work pc on 2.4 guest, along with anyone who comes over.
 

Latest threads

Sign Up For SNBForums Daily Digest

Get an update of what's new every day delivered to your mailbox. Sign up here!
Top