Wireless router recommendations


#290

So I have an Arris modem and a Linksys EA6350. My laptop has always been connected by WiFi. The speed is decent, nothing to write home about. About 3 to 4 MBs (not bits). This is fine for just about everything except large downloads. So I decided to purchase 100 ft of Cat6.

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00WD017BG/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o00_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1

What I mean to do is connect the laptop directly and see what kind of increase in speed I might get. And depending upon that I may have to get in touch with Spectrum and scold them. I went with Cat6 instead of 5e because a lot of the reviews of vanilla 5e complained of crappy speeds. The people who seemed to know their shit spoke of badly shielded cable. I’ve actually moved my microwave around in my kitchen, but it still kills my WiFi connection when it’s turned on.

So we shall see.


#291

That cable is not shielded either. At work, whenever I see such cables they automatically go into the trash.


#292

Too late for me. It arrives today.

Edit: My wireless speed is almost as fast as wired. OTOH I can run the microwave now with no degradation of wired speed, as I thought. Still going to bitch at Spectrum.


#293

I always support bitching at Spectrum. No matter how many times they go bankrupt, change their name, or try to sell the same shit service under a new “package”, they’re still a terrible company.

I am parking myself in the I do not like Linksys anymore, Netgear is sue happy so my next router will probably be just some other company.


#294

I flashed Merlin-Vortex custom firmware on my R7000 Netgear Nighthawk and it’s pretty swell. Lot more features to mess around with.


#295

I seriously doubt that he would have so much EMI in a home that he would need shielded cable (STP). I mean, it’s possible, but compared to a factory or office overhead where we typically use that, there is a world of difference.

If you’re saying you use STP even for patch cables (wall to desk) at work, that’s got to be mighty crazy for cost unless it’s a small environment. Hell, even in the datacenter from panels to gear we use UTP.


#296

Maybe I’m using the wrong term for it in english.
We use this type of cable, whether it’s cat5e or cat6:
image


#297

You were correct, it’s shielded twisted pair (STP.) That metal exterior allows it to ground in an associated shielded jack (if present.) It’s usually accompanied by a heavier and less bendable cable since the shielding is wrapped around all the pairs.

Sometimes it’s shielded around all the pairs like so:
image

Sometimes it’s shielded aroudn the individual pairs:
image

The catch is that the cable itself doesn’t do much unless the jack and connector are grounded to chassis ground in the path. That way they can really reduce EMI on the signals. It’s common to use that when running cables outside, in heavy machine environments, around florescent lighting, near broadcast equipment, etc. But it’s heavier, less bendable, and a tad more expensive.

The vast bulk of cable sold for patch cables is unshielded or UTP. It’s cheap, bendy and well … mostly cheap. :)

UTP for comparison:
image

And the ends typically are just plastic, like this:
image

I should mention there is also plenum rated cable as well, in which the plastics use have to meet codes for fire safety. They feel stiffer, but are not necessarily shielded.


#298

Yup, the first picture. Mostly into wall sockets that are cat6 at a minimum and all new sockets are cat7(though it depends on the customer).

As for the cost… Taking the long view we’d rather go with the higher quality option at the beginning than regret it later.


#299

I wish I had that option in every location we have. :( Sadly the businesses sometimes go cheap on the worst parts.


#301

Not a router recommendation, but I guess this is the best thread for this.

After recently moving, I want to situate my modem and router in a more central location in the new household, while also making it tidier and easier to access. This inexpensive little modem and router shelf arrives tomorrow:

image

I’ll set it up tomorrow (if I have time – looks easy) and this weekend I’ll combine it with this nifty “cable management sleeve” solution:

Will report back once it’s all set up.


#302

Loving that shelf. It looks really nice and tidy. Please take pictures. I am curious whether it will look good with a cable dangling …


#303

Shelf arrived and I attached it to a wall, up high and in a very central location. The material is super flimsy, but for the price I’m not complaining. I’d recommend limiting yourself to the modem and the router as shown in the photo, as it’s not designed to hold much weight. Nor is it designed to withstand much jiggling around, so I had to be super careful snaking cables through the back.

After running power to the shelf, I took a step back, pondered the situation, took a deep breath and went ahead and took my network down, even though I’m tired and don’t have time to make everything look pretty tonight. Managed to extend and then re-route my Comcast cable up a wall and followed the ceiling to the new shelf using (temporarily) tape. Then I pulled up my ethernet cabling and re-routed that to a couple of areas in the house, and brought my network back up.

This weekend, or maybe the following, I’ll wrap up the cabling and I’ll share photos then. For now I’m just happy to have freed up a corner where the modem/router was sitting, and to have improved the ethernet and wireless situation significantly.

I may also replace the shelf thing with one of these:

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0019T0J9S

I have one for my entertainment system already, and it might just work for the modem/router as well, if I can figure out a good way to attach it to the wall (wasn’t designed for that). It’s much sturdier and roomier.


#304

I’m thinking of going Ubiquiti whole hog for next wifi upgrade.


#305

Excellent choice. I had considered them at one time, we have a smattering of their gear at some work locations and I really like everything they do.

I’m still loving Google Wifi. It keeps track of data downloads on your connection and gives a running history of your download/upload speed for the past 60 days. Unfortunately the usage history, in comparison, is real-time, but it also reports on every device, and more than just by their IP. If it is a phone it will tell you the device name, and if another device will give you the hostname, while also letting you drill down on the device for more details.

As a network guy, I would call it easy to use, but not full featured, per se. At home I rarely do anything crazy anymore since I got rid of all my stuff from work and my old test rack. So I can see where a Google Wifi AP or mesh is an excellent fit for someone who isn’t good at installing home networking gear and rarely uses any extended features (hosting a service at the house, home VPN, etc.)


#306

I just did this, and while I had some minor issues setting it up it’s been rock solid ever since. We had all kinds of issues and dropouts with our old 3 netgear routers but since replacing them with 2 Ubiquiti AP it’s just been something I have forgotten about, which is exactly what I wanted.


#307

Just a status update on my two-Orbi setup: Still rock-solid and the best router setup I’ve ever had. Only setup that’s been 100% reliable streaming from my main Tivo to the Tivo mini in the bedroom.


#308

Second that, and this is from a router junkie, always buying the latest Nighthawk or whatever in search of wireless nirvana. Got an Orbi and satellite, and now I get very solid wireless upstairs, downstairs, in the back room, in the sunroom off the back of the house, and on the back deck. It just works.


#309

I probably would have bought an Orbi setup, except (at least at the time) you couldn’t use wired backhaul, which struck me as rather stupid.


#310

This is my story as well. My old ASUS wifi powersupply failed and I swung by costco to grab whatever they had (netgear blackhawk). Even with my Ubiquiti AP’s the modem would constantly drop the WAN connection, and even when the WAN connection hadn’t failed, the Netgear would constantly require rebooting.

As I already had the Ubiquiti AP’s, I grabbed their 3 port router and connections have been rock solid ever since I got it setup.

If I didn’t already have the PoE (power over ethernet) AP’s, I probably would have tried the Google mesh (or one of the others). Very, very happy with Ubiquiti though.