WiFi 6 POE APs

RacerX330

Occasional Visitor
We just bought a new house and everything is pre-wired, including locations in the ceiling for WiFi APs.

Previously, when I had my mom's house wired for ethernet, we put Cisco APs (140AC) in and over the past 2+ years they have been bulletproof. However, I want WiFi 6 in the new house. What reasonably priced options do folks here have experience with? I just don't see any WiFi 6 small business offering from Cisco, which is really disappointing. Who else makes good solidly reliable APs. They must be WiFi 6 and must be POE, and no more than $300 per device.

Thanks in advance!
 

Tech Junky

Very Senior Member
I use NWA210AX as an AP for a couple of years now and it stands up to whatever I do to it. I can get ~1.5gbps out of it on the LAN side using the 2.5gbps backhaul. Right now they're ~$150/ea but the price fluctuates a bit.

If you want to go a step further and do 6E then Netgear wax630e runs about $350/ea but adds 6GHZ as an option. This would mostly be if you're in a WIFI congested area though and not really a perk when it comes to speeds / performance over AX.
 
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tgl

Regular Contributor
I can second @Tech Junky's recommendation for the Zyxel NWA210AX (typo in what he wrote?).

Given that you don't need wireless backhaul, I don't see any point in WiFi 6e yet; it won't help you till you have some 6e-ready client hardware, and that's still mighty thin on the ground.
 

tgl

Regular Contributor
Forgot to mention that based on my experimentation so far, these Zyxel units are absolutely designed for ceiling mounting --- their radiation pattern definitely favors what is "above" the unit's dome, ie below when mounted to the ceiling. They're surely not unique in that, but they will do just fine in your application.
 

Tech Junky

Very Senior Member
@tgl fixed the typo

I have mine laying on a shelf vs the ceiling mount and get full coverage / speed in 1300sq ft. I like the POE w/ an injector since it's located next to my server that is the router it's an easy Ethernet connection to the injector / AP with short cables. There is an AC adapter though that comes with it if you're in need of that as well.
 

RacerX330

Occasional Visitor
Awesome thank you, I'm going to take a look at their offerings. Would be nice to have the switches be the same manufacturer as well.
 

Tech Junky

Very Senior Member
@RacerX330

They make switches too. I find it easier to mix brands for pricing and they all work the same in the end. Most people use the GUI to configure things and it's simple. I work with CLI though and that's fairly standard as well and easier to pick things apart in the config than through the GUI. I managed to strip out 30-40% of the config from CLI for features it doesn't need to use. Locking it down a bit more than what it comes with from a security stand point from CLI is easier to spot things. It depends on how comfortable you are with either method. Zyxel OS is close to Cisco though when it comes to commands but, it's kind of gimped to a point as well in what you can get it to do w/o complaining about syntax.
 

Tech Junky

Very Senior Member
I'm running it in standalone mode which works fine. They coordinate though if you opt to use Nebula which basically calls home to Zyxel and offers an aggregate web gui to manage a series of them together. I didn't feel like paying the fee which is nominal for a single AP. I don't remember what the fee is but, similarly the Netgear also does SA w/ a web / cloud management option for ~$15/AP/annually.

Since I filter all of the telemetry stuff from everyone that wants to sell info even when enabling Nebula it doesn't work quite right w/o allowing analytics to be performed. I think there might be some sort of a HW key you can use to control multiple AP's or flash configs to them.


Under supported AP's it doesn't look like the on premise controller works with them. Nebula only or SA. If you feel like stepping up in cost then I think the W series fall under something that would use a HW Controller.
 

RacerX330

Occasional Visitor
I'm sorta leaning towards netgear. 2x WAX620 and 1x MS108EUP

Now the question is, if you plug in a 1 gbit link into a 2.5gbit switch, do they all run at 1gbit or will the backhaul between the APs still be 2.5, and anything that goes through whatever is connected at 1gbit, runs at 1 gbit
 

tgl

Regular Contributor
Now the question is, if you plug in a 1 gbit link into a 2.5gbit switch, do they all run at 1gbit or will the backhaul between the APs still be 2.5, and anything that goes through whatever is connected at 1gbit, runs at 1 gbit

Any competently-designed ethernet switch will be able to pass data between any two ports at their common speed (or the lower of those two ports' speeds), independently of the speeds of any other ports. The switch might have a limit on total aggregate bandwidth it can handle at one time, but that should be well above the capability of any one port.
 

tgl

Regular Contributor
FWIW, I'm currently using some Netgear GS110MX unmanaged switches to interconnect a bunch of 1Gbps-capable machines. These have 8x 1G ports and 2x 10G ports, so I daisy-chain the 10G ports to form a 10G-speed backbone for all the clients. I've not been able to drive the setup to anywhere near its rated saturation point, but I can definitely sustain multiple 1G iperf3 streams across clients connected to different switches. The gear seems to do what it claims to do. This may end up being a poor choice once I acquire some better-than-1G machines --- right now I could only plug them in at one end or the other of the daisy chain, and one of those ends is already taken by a 2.5G-capable wifi access point. But for now it's just the ticket, because I've got a lot of older hardware hanging around.
 

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