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#369210 - 03/09/2017 18:41 New house, new wifi - so many choices
Phoenix42
veteran

Registered: 21/03/2002
Posts: 1376
Loc: MA but Irish born
So all going well we'll be buying a new house next year. As it is new construction I have the opportunity to add additional ethernet drops - but the question is where to put the?

I've more or less settled on the Ubiquiti Unifi products - lots of good mentions here, and the review of Best Wi-Fi Mesh included "a several-years-old pair of the original wireless-n Ubiquiti UAPs" which tested very well. So I figure going with them now will provide me many years of good wifi.

Looking at the UniFi product range I'm getting overwhelmed with the choices. Granted I could probably just slap three UniFi AC Pro anywhere in the house, but I suspect that is overkill, $50 more per unit Vs Lite, plus it might not pass WAF (can't just slap them on the ceiling in the middle of the living room). So proper, discrete placement, plus their In Wall all play a roll here, I just don't know where to start (and stop).

One last thing, our site layout differs from the what is shown in the first link - the front of our garage will be roughly in-line with the rear of the house, and face forward not backwards. There is also a full height, insulated, but un-finished basement. Wifi coverage would need to extend into (possible ethernet drop?) the garage (future Tesla?) and the backyard. At some point we'd use the basement, but adding anything down there is easy due to the exposed ceiling.

Thoughts on where ethernet drop should go, and what units to use? Thx

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#369211 - 03/09/2017 21:10 Re: New house, new wifi - so many choices [Re: Phoenix42]
K447
addict

Registered: 29/05/2002
Posts: 673
Loc: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
I shall comment on the height of the installed WiFi units. My experience is that the optimal distance from the floor is just over head height when standing. Say about 6.5 feet above the floor.

At this altitude there is generally very little furniture, people mass, etc so the signal tends to propagate well across rooms and through doorways. A surprising amount of WiFi signal strength tends to reach through the open doors, open room spaces and hallways. When signal has to travel right through solid walls and floors, it easily weakens.

WiFi signals do not travel well through multiple layers of structural materials, and especially poorly at shallow angles (where the signal is travelling through the length of the wall). Locate the WiFi modules so most of the portable device use locations have reasonable to minimal layers of building material to penetrate.

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#369212 - 03/09/2017 21:19 Re: New house, new wifi - so many choices [Re: Phoenix42]
K447
addict

Registered: 29/05/2002
Posts: 673
Loc: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Looking at the floor plans, I am unsure where the garage would be.

Inside the house, one WiFi access point on a high shelf in the 'optional built in pantry' would provide decent coverage for the main floor.

Another WiFi access point on a high shelf in the closet for bedroom 3 would cover that floor. Master bath and laundry would have the weakest signal (relatively speaking) which seems ok to me.

For the basement I would suggest a third access point. There tends to be a lot of structure in the main floor and basement below, and metal ducting between the floors.

If WiFi penetration into the garage is marginal, mount a WiFI repeater up fairly high inside the corner nearest the house. That should provide a decent link speed back to the house and flood the garage with solid WiFi;


Edited by K447 (03/09/2017 21:22)

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#369215 - 04/09/2017 02:27 Re: New house, new wifi - so many choices [Re: Phoenix42]
mlord
carpal tunnel

Registered: 29/08/2000
Posts: 13866
Loc: Canada
How close are the neighbours?
This matters for wifi.

Our neighbours are hundreds of feet away, so even the most basic wifi-G AP will cover the entire house (and most of the property) at low power. In our previous home, two neighbours were within 20', and a dozen were within a couple hundred feet. So multiple APs were needed to cover just the inside of the home.

That said, our current single AP is a bit more modern than wifi-G. smile

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#369217 - 04/09/2017 04:02 Re: New house, new wifi - so many choices [Re: Phoenix42]
DWallach
carpal tunnel

Registered: 30/04/2000
Posts: 3714
If your goal is to maximize your signal quality and minimize WAF issues, it's hard to beat those in-wall-jack things. Very discrete. Plus, you can just wire up a bunch of outlets as vanilla outlets. Convert later on to APs as necessary.

Note 1: make sure you've got a decent numbering convention for outlets, so you can look at an outlet, scribble down the number, and find the corresponding plug back in your wiring closet, without losing your mind.

Note 2: make sure you punch down and test each and every wire. The sheetrock installers will inevitably damage one or more wires.

Per K447's suggestion, you could also run wires to junction boxes placed discretely up on the wall. This yields APs that are a bit more noticeable, but not any worse than a security system's motion detectors or so many other gadgets that have slowly crept into our lives. Although, for all we know, they aim the antennae upward, so they really want to be installed closer to the floor.

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#369218 - 04/09/2017 04:09 Re: New house, new wifi - so many choices [Re: K447]
Phoenix42
veteran

Registered: 21/03/2002
Posts: 1376
Loc: MA but Irish born
So from your first reply, I'm going to read it to mean that I should not use their InWall units except as supplemental units in some locations - as they will most likely be stuck behind some hefty piece of furniture due to being ~16" off the ground.

Let me explain where the garage would be - exactly where you'd expect it to be on a normal house on a normal lot. The sample lot in the link has it facing a lane behind the house. But your suggestion of a repeater in the nearest corner of the house is valid.

Thx

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#369219 - 04/09/2017 04:12 Re: New house, new wifi - so many choices [Re: Phoenix42]
DWallach
carpal tunnel

Registered: 30/04/2000
Posts: 3714
I had a chat with one of our campus IT guys about this at one point. We're a Cisco shop, so lots of big APs mounted on ceilings, but they were looking at rolling out these more discrete in-wall things. Apparently the whole idea is that they have less range, so you can put more of them out and have less contention for limited spectrum.

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#369220 - 04/09/2017 04:16 Re: New house, new wifi - so many choices [Re: mlord]
Phoenix42
veteran

Registered: 21/03/2002
Posts: 1376
Loc: MA but Irish born
Close. Our lot is ~8,000 sq feet, so yes I am expecting interference from poorly configured Comcast home router/wifi.

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#369221 - 04/09/2017 04:19 Re: New house, new wifi - so many choices [Re: DWallach]
Phoenix42
veteran

Registered: 21/03/2002
Posts: 1376
Loc: MA but Irish born
Thanks Dan, some good thoughts there. I think I saw a propagation map at some point, I'll have to find it again.

edit
propagation map, but it is after midnight and I'm in not fit state to try and understand one. Something for the morning.


Edited by Phoenix42 (04/09/2017 04:33)

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#369222 - 04/09/2017 05:04 Re: New house, new wifi - so many choices [Re: Phoenix42]
K447
addict

Registered: 29/05/2002
Posts: 673
Loc: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Originally Posted By: Phoenix42
So from your first reply, I'm going to read it to mean that I should not use their InWall units except as supplemental units in some locations - as they will most likely be stuck behind some hefty piece of furniture due to being ~16" off the ground.

Let me explain where the garage would be - exactly where you'd expect it to be on a normal house on a normal lot. The sample lot in the link has it facing a lane behind the house. But your suggestion of a repeater in the nearest corner of the house is valid.

Thx
My suggestion was to install the WiFi access points INSIDE the closets, main floor and upstairs. I would put a small shelf in the corner above the door into the closet, so it is away from the staircase wall and not visible when someone opens the closet and looks in. Put it on a high shelf. Have an electrical outlet wired nearby, maybe in the ceiling.

Closets tend to have minimal wall density so the signal should be able to penetrate out from the closet.

And since you don't have to worry much about what it looks like (since it will be inside the closet), you can install good units, even if they are a tad large/ugly.

For the garage, the WiFi repeater (if needed) could be in the garage, in a high corner nearest the house WiFi source.

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#369227 - 04/09/2017 13:02 Re: New house, new wifi - so many choices [Re: K447]
Phoenix42
veteran

Registered: 21/03/2002
Posts: 1376
Loc: MA but Irish born
Thx for the clarification K447

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#369230 - 04/09/2017 14:49 Re: New house, new wifi - so many choices [Re: Phoenix42]
jmwking
addict

Registered: 27/02/2003
Posts: 678
Loc: Washington, DC metro
I did this in my house when we added a second floor several years ago (not a huge house - about 25' deep x 40' wide with a full basement under). This was before the consumer integrated systems were out, and I've felt no need to upgrade. We have a fairly tight suburban neighborhood; I can see 15 other APs (a few poorly configured at the moment, alas).

I hardwired a couple closets with Cat 6, both situated about halfway between the front and back of the house. I put a PoE AP in each, both running 2.4 and 5 GHz simultaneously, all on the same SSID - so four channels total. One is on the first floor at one end of the house, with the AP mounted high on the wall facing inward. The other is on the second floor (about 13' from the other end-wall) with the AP on the ceiling. I've found nothing close to dead spots, and my teens and their friends comment on how much better our wifi is...

The only thing we don't have is seamless handoff when streaming video on portables. Haven't really missed it, though; I tend to pause streaming when I'm walking around.

-jk

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#369234 - 04/09/2017 16:35 Re: New house, new wifi - so many choices [Re: jmwking]
K447
addict

Registered: 29/05/2002
Posts: 673
Loc: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Originally Posted By: jmwking
... I put a PoE AP in each, both running 2.4 and 5 GHz simultaneously, all on the same SSID - so four channels total. ...
I set the SSID for the 5Ghz different from 2.4Ghz.

5Ghz tends to work best in the same room as the Access Point, and 'the next room', not so well farther away with multiple walls in the signal path. So I configure the nearby and non-moving WiFi devices to the 5Ghz SSID. Apple TV, audio streaming box, that sort of thing.

This leaves the 2.4Ghz band and SSID available for the more mobile devices, and since 2.4Ghz penetrates structure more deeply than 5Ghz, the mobile devices get good signal everywhere.

Agree with running CAT6 cables to the equipment closet locations. Run more than one to each location. Cables do go bad sometimes, sometimes well after installation.

Also run cables to places where you expect connected gear to stay, such as TV, office desks, etc. I try to use wired connections whenever possible, thereby leaving maximum bandwidth available for the devices that must use WiFi.

A good wired connection provides the best reliability. WiFi can be quite good, but sometimes the solid connection using wired Ethernet is worth the hassle of installing it.

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#369244 - 05/09/2017 02:04 Re: New house, new wifi - so many choices [Re: Phoenix42]
jmwking
addict

Registered: 27/02/2003
Posts: 678
Loc: Washington, DC metro
I get solid 5 GHz throughout the house on my laptop (albeit set to prefer that band). I also ran dedicated wiring to the AV center (we only have the one) and to the extra bedroom if it might be an office in the future (our main office is also the hub in the basement).

Works for us...

-jk

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#369251 - 05/09/2017 15:18 Re: New house, new wifi - so many choices [Re: K447]
DWallach
carpal tunnel

Registered: 30/04/2000
Posts: 3714
Originally Posted By: K447
I set the SSID for the 5Ghz different from 2.4Ghz

Google WiFi does everything on a single SSID and it's completely seamless. I never worry about one vs. the other and all our devices magically switch to whichever frequency is appropriate. I suspect there's some active management going on in the APs to make this work.

Quote:
Agree with running CAT6 cables to the equipment closet locations. Run more than one to each location. Cables do go bad sometimes, sometimes well after installation.

I endorse running extra wires to each location. Better to have wires in place that you don't need than to eventually discover a need for wires that you don't have. To that end, there are a number of cable products that carry multiple Ethernet and RG-6 cable TV wires in a single bundle (example bulk cable from Amazon). If I was running wires from scratch, this is what I'd use.

I don't think it particularly matters whether you're using Cat5e, Cat6, or newer. Cat5e is all you need to run gigabit Ethernet, and supposedly the higher-rated cables are very much more particular in terms of minimum bend radius and such.

Quote:
A good wired connection provides the best reliability. WiFi can be quite good, but sometimes the solid connection using wired Ethernet is worth the hassle of installing it.

Without any doubt, a wired "backhaul" network for your APs is the preferable solution whenever possible.

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#369252 - 06/09/2017 18:08 Re: New house, new wifi - so many choices [Re: Phoenix42]
Phoenix42
veteran

Registered: 21/03/2002
Posts: 1376
Loc: MA but Irish born
I went ahead and ordered one of the Lite units, at $77 it is $52 cheaper the then the Pro. I'll play with it in out current condo, which is a very wifi-noise environment. If it does good there it will be fine in the new house.

I do plan on adding plenty of ethernet drops, and will ask about them using single bundle. Well as many drop as the budget will allow, I know, now is the time to do it. Maybe I can get them to run the cable and skip the labor intensive termination.

Expect a few more questions from me about as I go through this house building process. Although given that it is a development our choices are limited.

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#369253 - 06/09/2017 18:25 Re: New house, new wifi - so many choices [Re: Phoenix42]
larry818
old hand

Registered: 01/10/2002
Posts: 987
Loc: Fullerton, Calif.
I'd run rigid conduits so I can pull any kind of cable later on. In ten years, you'll be wanting the cat "quantum leap" (where data arrives before it's sent), and you'll be stuck with cat 6.

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#369254 - 06/09/2017 19:10 Re: New house, new wifi - so many choices [Re: Phoenix42]
Phoenix42
veteran

Registered: 21/03/2002
Posts: 1376
Loc: MA but Irish born
I can't run conduits to every drop location, right? Do I just run it from basement to attic to make future drops easier?

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#369255 - 06/09/2017 22:07 Re: New house, new wifi - so many choices [Re: Phoenix42]
mlord
carpal tunnel

Registered: 29/08/2000
Posts: 13866
Loc: Canada
If I had a two-story home, I would run fat conduit from basement to attic, as well as Cat5e to every room. And I would NEVER drywall the basement ceilings -- use modern decorative drop ceiling panels down there instead.

Our present house, designed by us and new 2.5 years ago, is single-story with walk-out basement. Multiple Cat5e drops to every room, and drop ceilings in those lower level rooms which actually have finished ceilings. Full access to adjust things in the future.

Cheers

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#369256 - 07/09/2017 00:51 Re: New house, new wifi - so many choices [Re: Phoenix42]
larry818
old hand

Registered: 01/10/2002
Posts: 987
Loc: Fullerton, Calif.
You can run all conduits. My 1947 house was done with all 1/2" metal conduits originally, except for the phone which was done with what looks like oil soaked cloth covered romex.

The conduits I've added are all 1" PVC, but I have a convenient crawl space to run them in. Those conduits used to have coax in them, now have cat 5.

Probably 1/2" conduits are big enough and easier to route.

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#369257 - 07/09/2017 07:06 Re: New house, new wifi - so many choices [Re: larry818]
andy
carpal tunnel

Registered: 10/06/1999
Posts: 5746
Loc: Wivenhoe, Essex, UK
I wish there was a sane way of running any cables in our house 😢

I think when I finally hardwire the two ends of the house together it will via fibre round the outside of the house.
_________________________
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#369258 - 07/09/2017 09:41 Re: New house, new wifi - so many choices [Re: Phoenix42]
sn00p
addict

Registered: 24/07/2002
Posts: 600
Loc: South London
I use unifi stuff at home and it works pretty well for me.

I actually have the AP attached to the inside of a IKEA cabinet in the lounge and it works pretty well all over our house.



If I could get a gigabit cable upstairs I would (My virginmedia broadband is 400Mbit) I would and I'd stick another AP in the ceiling of our bedroom. The unifi AP's look quite neat (wife friendly) and are PoE, but getting a cable upstairs means fishing for cables in wall cavities.


Edited by sn00p (07/09/2017 09:42)

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#369260 - 07/09/2017 17:15 Re: New house, new wifi - so many choices [Re: sn00p]
tanstaafl.
carpal tunnel

Registered: 08/07/1999
Posts: 5356
Loc: Ajijic, Mexico
Originally Posted By: sn00p
...getting a cable upstairs means fishing for cables in wall cavities.
This idea may not be applicable in your case, but just in case...

A friend was replacing the rear derailleur cable in his bicycle, which ran through the chain stay. Once the old cable was removed, there was no way to thread the new cable. It wouldn't find the hole to exit the chain stay. So, he took a spool of thread, fed a couple feet into the "input" hole of the chain stay, then used a vacuum cleaner to suck the end of the thread out of the exit hole. After that it was easy, connect the thread to a string, connect the string to the cable, and pull the cable through.

Is it possible this technique could work for you?

tanstaafl.
_________________________
"There Ain't No Such Thing As A Free Lunch"

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#369261 - 07/09/2017 18:06 Re: New house, new wifi - so many choices [Re: Phoenix42]
Phoenix42
veteran

Registered: 21/03/2002
Posts: 1376
Loc: MA but Irish born
The UniFi Lite I ordered arrived yesterday, and in good geek fashion everything else was ignored so I could play with it - well once the kids got put to bed.

Physically the unit is very light - this will make for easy temporary installing with 3M OnCommand strips, and smaller then I expected. The Lite unit really is smoke alarm sized, and more discrete (once the blue light is disabled) then I expected, which will help with WAF and therefore placement options. This is a big win for me.

Configuration is very different from a traditional WAP or home router, but nothing a regular nerd shouldn't be able to handle. If you remember that you are configuring a system, and not an individual device, it goes a long way. I expect that adding a future AP will be even easier as it will inherit a lot of the existing config. At this stage I know I've not even scratched the surface of what the software can do, and I suspect that is the case for most home users of this product.

Performance wise the Lite's signal was marginally stronger on 2.4ghz then my existing Asus N66 when using inSSIDer* on a desktop two floors up. Unifi does report that the 2.4ghz band is ~50% utilized in my neighborhood, but that 5ghz is barely touched. Checking the devices in my house many of them are 5ghz capable (phones, chromebooks, work laptop), those that are not include the kids Kindles (sorry kids), Roku (within line of site of the router), Raspberry Pi (it's fine on 2.4) and the above mention desktop ($20 to replace the mini PCI express card to add AC and BlueTooth).

All in all a valuable exercise, and well worth the $77 investment for the piece of mind of knowing what I'll need to do to get solid wifi in our new home.

Thanks everyone!

* Agh! inSSIDer has gone away, or at least their free Home version. You can still grab version 3 of the Home version from some download sites, though it lacks AC support.

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#369265 - 07/09/2017 19:28 Re: New house, new wifi - so many choices [Re: Phoenix42]
K447
addict

Registered: 29/05/2002
Posts: 673
Loc: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
On Mac I use WiFi Explorer.

Even on the Standard version I find the Channels view to be highly useful. Seeing what other WiFi sources are conflicting with the channels being used by my own gear really clarifies what channels I need to NOT be using.



I can carry my MacBook around like a Geiger counter and sniff out which sides of the house (and which neighbours) are squatting across precious bandwidth. In some cases I offer to adjust their own WiFi gear to better channel selections (for both of us) and turn off 2.4Ghz wide channel modes.

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#369266 - 07/09/2017 19:29 Re: New house, new wifi - so many choices [Re: tanstaafl.]
mlord
carpal tunnel

Registered: 29/08/2000
Posts: 13866
Loc: Canada
Originally Posted By: tanstaafl.
..used a vacuum cleaner to suck the end of the thread out of the exit hole


That's a pretty standard technique for fishing wires through conduit. We used it here to suck a pull string through the 130' of 3/4" plastic pipe used for the street-to-home cable internet conduit. I have my doubts about it working in a larger space like a stud wall cavity though.

Cheers

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#369267 - 07/09/2017 19:31 Re: New house, new wifi - so many choices [Re: K447]
mlord
carpal tunnel

Registered: 29/08/2000
Posts: 13866
Loc: Canada
Wifi Analyzer on a smart phone is a somewhat more portable solution for that!

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#369269 - 07/09/2017 20:03 Re: New house, new wifi - so many choices [Re: K447]
jmwking
addict

Registered: 27/02/2003
Posts: 678
Loc: Washington, DC metro
Originally Posted By: K447
On Mac I use WiFi Explorer.

Even on the Standard version I find the Channels view to be highly useful. Seeing what other WiFi sources are conflicting with the channels being used by my own gear really clarifies what channels I need to NOT be using.



I can carry my MacBook around like a Geiger counter and sniff out which sides of the house (and which neighbours) are squatting across precious bandwidth. In some cases I offer to adjust their own WiFi gear to better channel selections (for both of us) and turn off 2.4Ghz wide channel modes.


After my own heart! My next door (really close by) still resists my efforts to clean his signals up...

-jk

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#369270 - 07/09/2017 20:06 Re: New house, new wifi - so many choices [Re: mlord]
K447
addict

Registered: 29/05/2002
Posts: 673
Loc: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Originally Posted By: mlord
Wifi Analyzer on a smart phone is a somewhat more portable solution for that!
Android only, that app.

I have iPhone, which requires extra third party hardware to do similar analysis.

So I use MacBook, which is not as portable but I have it on hand. I don't do this sort of WiFi sleuthing all that often, mainly when something changes or I suspect a new rogue WiFi presence.

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#369271 - 07/09/2017 20:21 Re: New house, new wifi - so many choices [Re: Phoenix42]
sn00p
addict

Registered: 24/07/2002
Posts: 600
Loc: South London
Originally Posted By: Phoenix42
The UniFi Lite I ordered arrived yesterday, and in good geek fashion everything else was ignored so I could play with it - well once the kids got put to bed.

Physically the unit is very light - this will make for easy temporary installing with 3M OnCommand strips, and smaller then I expected. The Lite unit really is smoke alarm sized, and more discrete (once the blue light is disabled) then I expected, which will help with WAF and therefore placement options. This is a big win for me.

Configuration is very different from a traditional WAP or home router, but nothing a regular nerd shouldn't be able to handle. If you remember that you are configuring a system, and not an individual device, it goes a long way. I expect that adding a future AP will be even easier as it will inherit a lot of the existing config. At this stage I know I've not even scratched the surface of what the software can do, and I suspect that is the case for most home users of this product.

Performance wise the Lite's signal was marginally stronger on 2.4ghz then my existing Asus N66 when using inSSIDer* on a desktop two floors up. Unifi does report that the 2.4ghz band is ~50% utilized in my neighborhood, but that 5ghz is barely touched. Checking the devices in my house many of them are 5ghz capable (phones, chromebooks, work laptop), those that are not include the kids Kindles (sorry kids), Roku (within line of site of the router), Raspberry Pi (it's fine on 2.4) and the above mention desktop ($20 to replace the mini PCI express card to add AC and BlueTooth).

All in all a valuable exercise, and well worth the $77 investment for the piece of mind of knowing what I'll need to do to get solid wifi in our new home.

Thanks everyone!

* Agh! inSSIDer has gone away, or at least their free Home version. You can still grab version 3 of the Home version from some download sites, though it lacks AC support.


I really love the "system" configuration in unifi, I have a docker container running on my NAS which runs the controller. I love the guest portal as well, I run an open SSID with the portal enabled and can just generate a voucher code for any guests that want access to the net, means they never need to know the password and it automatically expires.

Some stuff like DNS hostnames isn't in the current version of the gui, but you can create a file and when you provision a device it merges in your configured file so that my hostnames are resolved as well. One of the current test releases exposes a gui for this.

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#369272 - 07/09/2017 21:26 Re: New house, new wifi - so many choices [Re: mlord]
larry818
old hand

Registered: 01/10/2002
Posts: 987
Loc: Fullerton, Calif.
Originally Posted By: mlord
I have my doubts about it working in a larger space like a stud wall cavity though.


It would probably collapse the dry wall into the cavity.

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#369273 - 07/09/2017 21:43 Re: New house, new wifi - so many choices [Re: larry818]
mlord
carpal tunnel

Registered: 29/08/2000
Posts: 13866
Loc: Canada
Originally Posted By: larry818
Originally Posted By: mlord
I have my doubts about it working in a larger space like a stud wall cavity though.

It would probably collapse the dry wall into the cavity.


Funny smile but no. More likely there would be insufficient volume of air movement within the wide cavity to draw a thread towards the exit hole.

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#369274 - 07/09/2017 22:42 Re: New house, new wifi - so many choices [Re: mlord]
larry818
old hand

Registered: 01/10/2002
Posts: 987
Loc: Fullerton, Calif.
Originally Posted By: mlord
Funny smile but no.


My house, wood framed, has wall cavities that are 14" x 46". If I can draw 15"hg, that's about 4,500 lbs, I think it would break.

Originally Posted By: mlord
More likely there would be insufficient volume of air movement within the wide cavity to draw a thread towards the exit hole.


That's for sure. Use a ferret.

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#369275 - 08/09/2017 17:53 Re: New house, new wifi - so many choices [Re: larry818]
mlord
carpal tunnel

Registered: 29/08/2000
Posts: 13866
Loc: Canada
Originally Posted By: larry818
My house, wood framed, has wall cavities that are 14" x 46". If I can draw 15"hg, that's about 4,500 lbs, I think it would break.


Quite possibly. But a vacuum or shopvac won't give nearly that amount of suction. Okay, sure it will, within a 2" diameter hose. But not within a much larger volume wall cavity. Small vacs like that simply cannot move enough air volume to sustain that kind of pressure within larger volumes.

The workshop dust collector I have here, can apparently generate 15" (water) static pressure through a 6" diameter pipe. It might have a hope of damaging an enclosed wall cavity, but I'd have to try it to know for sure. I did have to reinforce the metal waste bins I use for catching the chips from it -- they were definitely trying to implode!

Still, this is a topic just begging for experimentation!

I have one more sheet of drywall to install downstairs at some point, and if there are sufficiently large cutoffs from that I will create a fake stud wall to try both the shopvac and the much beefier dust collector on.

Cheers

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#369276 - 08/09/2017 20:39 Re: New house, new wifi - so many choices [Re: Phoenix42]
Dignan
carpal tunnel

Registered: 08/03/2000
Posts: 12021
Loc: Sterling, VA
Quote:
The Lite unit really is smoke alarm sized, and more discrete (once the blue light is disabled) then I expected, which will help with WAF and therefore placement options. This is a big win for me.

I wish I'd checked in at the start of this thread because I was about to respond to your initial post with just this observation! When one of those is on the ceiling it practically blends in.

I haven't seen since the start of this thread, but are you planning on getting a Cloud Key to manage the APs? It makes things a lot easier and you don't have to dedicate a computer to the task. You can just attach it to the same POE switch that'll power the APs.

I have Google WiFi now, but just because I wanted to upgrade to ac at a time when the Unifi AC products were still in the $250 range. Now they're so cheap!

For all of my clients with either drop ceilings or ethernet runs, I install Unifi. For the rest I tend to use Google Wifi because I'm familiar with it and I'm a fanatic as you all know. Both systems have worked well in every place I've installed them. Just last week I installed four Google Wifi units in a 5000+ sqft home and got good coverage everywhere.
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Matt

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#369285 - 09/09/2017 15:46 Re: New house, new wifi - so many choices [Re: Dignan]
Phoenix42
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Registered: 21/03/2002
Posts: 1376
Loc: MA but Irish born
Hey Matt, I was hoping you'd chime in as I know you've had hands on experience with the UniFi products.

Longer term I think I'll be going all in on the UniFi ecosystem and getting a Security Gateway, Switch with PoE, Cloud Key and additional access points as needed/wanted. But this is longer term for building out a solid network at our new house, I need to hold back on buying toys to save for the $$$ down payment.

I really like the Cloud controller interface, and currently don't have a system use for it, unless I shoehorn it onto a Pi, do able but for $75, or maybe I'll run it in EC2 for free for the year so I can play. I do like how it can pull info from all the UniFi devices, I do see it being usable to verify when my kids get home laugh

All in all I'm really liking the UniFi system so fair. I was considering Google Wifi, but was holding off due to many posts on Reddit complaining about missing advanced features. While I like 99% of the market probably don't need those features, it was another mark against it. What pushed me over the edge towards UniFi was The Wirecutter review I mentioned in my opening post - if a multi year old product is still giving newer product a run for the money, it is good enough for me - granted it was an apples to oranges comparison, but I was planning on hardwired backhauls not mesh.

edit I do wish they had a 16 port switch that was half PoE half regular. The four PoE on the UniFi Switch 8 60W is going to be tight #firstworldproblems


Edited by Phoenix42 (09/09/2017 15:52)

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#369286 - 09/09/2017 21:06 Re: New house, new wifi - so many choices [Re: Phoenix42]
sein
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Registered: 07/01/2005
Posts: 889
Loc: Sector ZZ9pZa
Originally Posted By: Phoenix42
edit I do wish they had a 16 port switch that was half PoE half regular. The four PoE on the UniFi Switch 8 60W is going to be tight #firstworldproblems
You could use a US-8-150W

Thought I'd chime in since my controller says I have 218 Ubiquiti devices installed at the moment.

UAP-AC-LITE is small, neat and works well. It is 2x2 2.4GHz and 2x2 5GHz and the antennae in the unit are OK. I use quite a few of these.

UAP-AC-LR is a bit bigger but this is to accommodate bigger and better antennae while also getting a hardware bump to 3x3 2.4GHz and 2x2 5Ghz. The extra chain on 2.4GHz allows the LR to deal better with signal reflections and multiple 2.4GHz devices as well as going a bit faster. It's my favourite unit, I use them a lot.

UAP-AC-PRO is an interesting unit. It does 3x3 2.4GHz, and 3x3 5GHz as well as having a much beefed up processor than the other two units. Useful in high traffic areas where you have lots of clients, commercial installations mainly (hence the price jump for market positioning). Also useful when you really just need to go as fast as possible. I only have about five of these.

At home, I would only use LR units and turn the power down as appropriate to aid handover between multiple APs.
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Hussein

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#369292 - 10/09/2017 00:55 Re: New house, new wifi - so many choices [Re: Phoenix42]
drakino
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Registered: 08/06/1999
Posts: 7868
Loc: Seattle, WA
I'm not looking to replace my current WiFi setup yet. Though if Apple does completely stop their Airport sales, I'll be looking for whatever the most recent thread here is to help make my decision on what to upgrade to. Glad to see the good info regarding the state of the industry can be found here smile

Thanks K447 for the info on the WiFi Explorer app, may pick that up. I'm always impressed with how well the built in WiFi tools work on macOS that I hadn't thought to look for more before. I do hope the OS tools stay decent, as by what I understand they were designed by the same folks from the Airport team that was rumored to no longer exist.
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Tom

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#369303 - 10/09/2017 19:26 Re: New house, new wifi - so many choices [Re: sein]
BartDG
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Registered: 20/05/2001
Posts: 2558
Loc: Bruges, Belgium
They now also have the UAP-AC-HD and UAP-AC-SHD. (don't really know the difference between the two, but the first costs about $350 and the latter $550). These are MU-MIMO units, which I why I would probably consider the HD when I upgrade my system. Seems more future-proof to me. Have you got any experience with those Sein?
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#369309 - 11/09/2017 08:05 Re: New house, new wifi - so many choices [Re: Phoenix42]
sein
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Registered: 07/01/2005
Posts: 889
Loc: Sector ZZ9pZa
I did forget about those, the MU-MIMO in the UAP-AC-HD is pretty sweet for a number of high bandwidth devices on your network and this is a nice upgrade from the UAP-AC-PRO. I read about the release of this and remember a huge difference being the processor(s) in the unit allowing for reliable connections to hundreds of simultaneous clients in commercial environments.

I read about the UAP-AC-SHD when they landed in the Beta Store a few days ago. Seems like effectively an UAP-AC-HD with an additional radio for real-time spectrum scanning, finally trying to match the feature set of Cisco Meraki (AMP) and Ruckus (Cloudpath and SCI). The additional radio should in theory allow some decent auto-configuration too.

No hands on experience with either of those but interested in playing with the SHD, maybe I'll get one...
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#370049 - 10/12/2017 20:20 Re: New house, new wifi - so many choices [Re: Phoenix42]
Dignan
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Registered: 08/03/2000
Posts: 12021
Loc: Sterling, VA
Sorry to drag this thread up. I just wanted to share that I've gone Ubiquiti in my home. The Google WiFi and OnHub were removed, and an Edgerouter X, UniFi AC LR AP, and Cloud Key have gone in their place.

It might just be a placebo effect, but the wireless feels like it functions better now. Things just feel like they work.

Also, I was able to place the AP dead center in my house. The middle of the middle floor. There was a line running to a desk area in my kitchen, and came out on the wall where you would put a landline phone (ha!). I covered that up with a blank plate, and fished a new line up the wall and out the other side into our coat closet.

Speed tests show I'm getting the full speed my ISP is sending me, and devices talk to each other super fast. My wife is able to AirDrop a dozen photos to me in seconds.

I liked Google WiFi, but this seems to work better.
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Matt

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#370054 - 11/12/2017 02:39 Re: New house, new wifi - so many choices [Re: Dignan]
Phoenix42
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Registered: 21/03/2002
Posts: 1376
Loc: MA but Irish born
Apologizing for dragging up an old thread, is like apologizing for sending a thread off on a tangent - both are normal around here smile

I'm glad to here you are having a positive experience with the Ubiquiti products. I only stuck a toe in the water, purchasing an AC Lite, but it sends a solid AC signal two floor away (10 year old US condo, basic materials). So between now, and move-in date I'll be adding the rest of the Unifi stack. Once we're settled I'll investigate if we need more APs.

Why did you go with the Edgerouter over the USG?

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#370057 - 11/12/2017 03:01 Re: New house, new wifi - so many choices [Re: Phoenix42]
Dignan
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Registered: 08/03/2000
Posts: 12021
Loc: Sterling, VA
The basic reason is that I have experience with the Edgerouters and I don't with the USG. Also, the X gives me five ports to do with as I please. I just have one as wan and four as lan. The X is also half the price.

*edit*
But the USG does fit into the UniFi system better. It also does all the DPI stuff out of the box.


Edited by Dignan (11/12/2017 03:24)
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Matt

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#370058 - 11/12/2017 06:44 Re: New house, new wifi - so many choices [Re: Phoenix42]
JBjorgen
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Registered: 19/01/2002
Posts: 3478
Loc: Guadalajara, MX
I should add that I never updated the original thread, but the campus network that I put in off the grid in Zambia is still going strong almost 2 years later. It's a mix of Unifi AC LR's, a UniFi AC Outdoor and 2 pairs of Nanobeam AC's for the point-to-point links. Also a USG. I was able to teach some of the local students and staff (who have never owned a computer, but quite bright and catch on quickly) enough of the basics to administrate it. I'm quite happy with the Ubiquiti stuff.
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#370064 - 11/12/2017 20:11 Re: New house, new wifi - so many choices [Re: JBjorgen]
Dignan
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Registered: 08/03/2000
Posts: 12021
Loc: Sterling, VA
Originally Posted By: JBjorgen
I should add that I never updated the original thread, but the campus network that I put in off the grid in Zambia is still going strong almost 2 years later. It's a mix of Unifi AC LR's, a UniFi AC Outdoor and 2 pairs of Nanobeam AC's for the point-to-point links. Also a USG. I was able to teach some of the local students and staff (who have never owned a computer, but quite bright and catch on quickly) enough of the basics to administrate it. I'm quite happy with the Ubiquiti stuff.

That is so cool. Especially the Nanobeam part. I wish I had a reason to need that laugh It's great to hear, though! I've been pleased with the Ubiquiti stuff. I've talked to colleagues who look down on it but I don't really know why...
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Matt

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#370072 - 12/12/2017 14:16 Re: New house, new wifi - so many choices [Re: Dignan]
Phoenix42
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Registered: 21/03/2002
Posts: 1376
Loc: MA but Irish born
Thanks Matt, that makes sense. I've minimal networking knowledge, so I'll be sticking with the USG and the UniFi Controller GUI. I do wish it came with more ports, only the tiniest of environments can escape with out adding a switch.

That is impressive JBjorgen - I think that is a testament to a good code base and ease of use.

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