Wireless router recommendations


I miss catching this thread a lot. For ethernet runs at the house, check out recommended electricians. Many do that, and if they do not, know a very good person who does. Network is the “wiring” every new house wants these days.

Alternatives besides alarm people are also AV installers.


From Microsoft director and security wonk Troy Hunt, I am seriously considering redoing all my wifi, family wifi and friends with Ubiquiti gear going forward:


Waste of time and money, get the Orbi.


Yeah, I’ve got a 2 story house, spread out, lots of walls, cable modem and main Orbi downstairs in a bedroom, satellite upstairs in the kitchen, and I get solid full speed (my internet speed is rated at 100Mbps down and I get (via Speedtest.net 98-100 Mbps) in every corner of the house, upstairs, downstairs, even in the sunroom which is off the back of the house upstairs. It doesn’t have all of the options my old fancy routers had, but frankly I plugged it in and set it up and it just works.


surprised by your dismissal of ubi stuff, wumpus. anyways in canada it’s cheaper by $100 than the orbi starter kit. plus netgear has botched their iOT-style app and i trust ubiquiti for their software more.


To be fair Troy is talking about professional grade equipment and not the consumer grade kit from Ubi, and going by those costs, damn!
The consumer grade kit, the Amplifi system, does look pretty good though. I also believe its a much more attractive set up than the Orbi but it seems that the Orbi has a dedicated 5-g network that it uses to communicates with its satellite. This keeps it from using the bandwidth on your active 5-g wireless. There are some pros and cons to weigh on both but for most people either one will probably do an amazing job compared to the older router tech.


I’m moving into a new house, one story with a full basement, roughly 1700 sqft. I got the electrician to run two Cat 6 lines from where the internet comes in to a central location on both floors where I intend to have satellites / access points / whatever. I was considering an Orbi setup until I saw their FAQ said it works better in a completely wireless configuration. Is there another option that works best hardwired but is still easy to setup and performs as well?


Orbi won’t work at all with wired backhaul unless something has changed recently. Check out Google Wifi, Linksys Velop, Portal, or Eero. At the moment, my plan is to go with Google Wifi.


I think they are working on wired backhaul but I wouldn’t assume it is coming anytime soon. There have been a lot of firmware updates though:

(expand downloads to see recent releases)


friends in telco test labs back up qt3 hivemind’s choice of orbi as the best of the mesh bunch.


I’ve got the Google WiFi bundle on order. I have backhaul, but my current solution of a mixed vendor approach isn’t working. If it is absolutely horrible, I may be bothered enough to come post about it. :)


Put in a 3-pack of Google WiFi last night in about 15 minutes, and that was mostly due to my GF talking to me the entire time about work. VERY easy installation. Customization and firewalling, I’m not yet up on, as I couldn’t see much of that in the app.

So far though, my house is baked in signal and everything is screaming on speed. To confirm what others here have said, Google does have the ability to backhaul via wire. I was actually prepared to do that, but after seeing the speeds with just wireless backhaul, I’m going to leave it as is and see how things perform.


Cool. My only concern here is I have no idea what type of wire is connecting two of the three areas. The one I’m worried about runs under some carpet, so it could be a bit of a pain to deal with.


Of note, I don’t get much technical feedback on the app. I’ll play around with it this evening, but I didn’t initially see a way to guage speed on wireless backhaul, nor how to port forward if anyone here was wanting that.


Some updates on Google WiFi:

  • Changing the light level on each AP is an awesome feature, making it invisible, or nearly a night light.
  • Guest network setup was a snap, and looks so easy to change, enable/disable that I might just do it per event need, like, “Skippers_Shindig.”
  • Port forwarding and other standard home firewall options are available via advanced network options.

The best write up I’ve found covering the install and other options:

A full coverage review on SmallNetBuilder, with performance comparisons to others mentioned in this thread:

An edit here that is important: The backhaul link for Google WiFi is shared with access. That means uplink via wifi slows your speed. As Orbi is the only one currently with dedicated backhaul, I think it’s important to note that it should win ANY speed tests of access from the satellite units versus the main unit, versus Google WiFi, which only has shared access/backhaul.


Thanks for the impressions


No worries. I’m loving the speed. I thought briefly about the Orbi as well. It’s important to note the key differences for folks considering what to buy.


One frustrating thing is that most of the articles of mesh networks don’t test a wired backhaul, even when they acknowledge it is possible. I get that most people won’t use that, but for those that have the capability, it’s important. Especially annoying when Orbi is included in comparisons, for the reason you mentioned above. You are using the full capabilities of one device, but not the others.


If you are going to use wired back-haul, wouldn’t it make more sense to use something like commercial WIFI access points plus a separate router?

WIFI meshes seem like a solution for people who specifically CAN’T get wired backhaul in the first place.



No, in my mind, mesh is all about ease of use. I’ve been using Apple airport for 17+ years. Mesh is (not mechanically, but practically) doing what we have always done, but more modern (since Apple has ceased development).