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Wifi coverage / extenders

Started by sls.stormyrider, May 20, 2020, 05:09:27 PM

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sls.stormyrider

I have a couple blind spots in the house and after all these years it is just starting to bug me. I use an Apple Extreme as the base. I don't know the version but it is about 6 or 7 years old, maybe a little older. I bought a TP-Link extender. I now have full wifi bars everywhere but sometimes despite that I have no functional wifi.
Anyone have any suggestions?
Should I upgrade the Extreme?
"toss away stuff you don't need in the end
but keep what's important, and know who's your friend"
"It's a 106 miles to Chicago. We got a full tank of gas, half a pack of cigarettes, it's dark and we're wearing sunglasses."

Caravan2001

Quote from: sls.stormyrider on May 20, 2020, 05:09:27 PM
I have a couple blind spots in the house and after all these years it is just starting to bug me. I use an Apple Extreme as the base. I don't know the version but it is about 6 or 7 years old, maybe a little older. I bought a TP-Link extender. I now have full wifi bars everywhere but sometimes despite that I have no functional wifi.
Anyone have any suggestions?
Should I upgrade the Extreme?

I had a 6-7 year old extreme as well.  When all this went down and my kids started homeschooling and our bandwidth was going through the roof, I bought a Lynksys router and extender and now whole house is cranking with no dead spots.  The new router really helped.  I also had the extreme placed under my iMac, and now have the Lynksis a little higher up and closer to the rest go the house so that helps too.  I went with this.  It wasn't the cheapest, but we've got a lot of connections going at once and setup was easy and ability to monitor all the devices and such is great.  It crushes the Extreme imo, and worth the money for us.  https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B06X9CPC45/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_search_asin_title?ie=UTF8&psc=1

sls.stormyrider

thanks
thinking along those lines
"toss away stuff you don't need in the end
but keep what's important, and know who's your friend"
"It's a 106 miles to Chicago. We got a full tank of gas, half a pack of cigarettes, it's dark and we're wearing sunglasses."

anthrax

So after 5 or 6 years of use, does the effectiveness of wireless routers decrease?  or all the other technological demands just increase over that time?  lately, i've been having issues using my sonos out by the fire pit which is easily 200 feet from my router.  i thought about getting an extender, but maybe a new router is the way to go??  thoughts??


Caravan2001

Quote from: anthrax on May 21, 2020, 09:14:40 AM
So after 5 or 6 years of use, does the effectiveness of wireless routers decrease?  or all the other technological demands just increase over that time?  lately, i've been having issues using my sonos out by the fire pit which is easily 200 feet from my router.  i thought about getting an extender, but maybe a new router is the way to go??  thoughts??

I don't necessary think the effectiveness decreases (it's not like they are wear items) but technology has improved over last 5 years.  Another thing to check (if you are doing cable modem) is the effectiveness of your modem.  I just went through all of this myself.  My Comcast modem was out of date and I got twice as fast speed for less money once they just had me come in and get a new modem.  Comcast here gives you a combo modem router, but I went with my own router.  You can also go with your own modem, but the gigabit modems are pretty expensive.  But I was out of my contract with comcast and called them to complain about my bill and I ended up with $50 less a month to go back on contract and now that they have gigabit, once they gave me the new modem, my speeds went from 175mbps to an average of about 950 now.  For less money.  Total game changer.  So I would look into your modem and your plan.  You might be able to bump up to gigabit for no charge or less.  And as far as router and range, new router will help, but my brother (and a lot of people) swear by mesh systems which are kind of the new hype.  My brother has the Google Nest mesh system and he has a fairly big house (4000sq') and they are dialed.  So, check out mesh too.  My whole situation between now and early-March is like a total 180.  Glad I looked into it.  Here is some info on mesh:  https://www.pcmag.com/how-to/wi-fi-range-extender-vs-mesh-network-whats-the-difference

rowjimmy

I just upped my service and they replaced my router. Their provides wifi, where as I'd previously supplied that part and have a not-very-old wap. BUT.... their shit is mint and is providing much better service even to the farthest point in my house (which happens to be my office.) Start there.

I should say, if you want to use an extender, you need to place it at a location that gets good service. You'll only be as good as the extender's connection to the interweb.

mopper_smurf

My old extender did a fine job for years, but the drastic increase of laptops and gaming gizmos I needed something better to reach the top floor. My ISP send me a new one with mesh capability at no charge at all after I pointed out that I am using their using their services for 20+ years.
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ph92

Quote from: anthrax on May 21, 2020, 09:14:40 AM
So after 5 or 6 years of use, does the effectiveness of wireless routers decrease?  or all the other technological demands just increase over that time?  lately, i've been having issues using my sonos out by the fire pit which is easily 200 feet from my router.  i thought about getting an extender, but maybe a new router is the way to go??  thoughts??


Also take into consideration your current bandwidth vs when you got the router. I'd suggest getting a Wifi AX router, AX is the brand new standard, future proof yourself. But keep in mind newer technologies actually have less range but higher bandwidth but, although new routers will still broadcast all the older standards like Wifi N , which has a huge range but lower bandwidth. Your sonos would be unaffected by the lower bandwidth. Another side note, Wifi AC and AX are more susceptible to interference as well. eta. The interference isn't something to worry about in your home unless you have other routers or are super close to your neighbors.
Make America Melt Again!

Quote from: runawayjimbo on July 25, 2017, 07:10:15 PM
FUCK YEAH TREY. FUCK YEAH

tet

I went mesh a couple years ago with Plume and absolutely love it, but they kinda changed their business model and charge a subscription now so while it's the best mesh out there IMO (and they don't collect data like Nest), it's harder to recommend. The subscription covers software updates & improvements, plus warranties the hardware - it's not totally unreasonable, but as I was grandfathered in without any fees ever, I find myself in an odd position of not necessarily being able to justify this. But the service is second-to-none... I cover about 3,600 sq. ft. without any dead spots, and pump speeds of 150-400 mbps everywhere, both up and down.

As for the other recommendations here, yes get Wifi AX if you can - it will last you the longest at this point, and i'm sure will improve. Extenders were fine for a while for me, but not all work the same, and you usually sacrifice speed for distance, and/or the inconvenience of having to manually switch hotspots - I wasn't willing to do any of that, which is how I ended up with mesh.

Go with Plume if you have the money - it actually doesn't work out to be crazy expensive compared to the alternatives, and it's super simple and really really fast.
"We want you to be happy"
-Phish

Caravan2001

Quote from: tet on May 26, 2020, 05:27:02 AM
I went mesh a couple years ago with Plume and absolutely love it, but they kinda changed their business model and charge a subscription now so while it's the best mesh out there IMO (and they don't collect data like Nest), it's harder to recommend. The subscription covers software updates & improvements, plus warranties the hardware - it's not totally unreasonable, but as I was grandfathered in without any fees ever, I find myself in an odd position of not necessarily being able to justify this. But the service is second-to-none... I cover about 3,600 sq. ft. without any dead spots, and pump speeds of 150-400 mbps everywhere, both up and down.

As for the other recommendations here, yes get Wifi AX if you can - it will last you the longest at this point, and i'm sure will improve. Extenders were fine for a while for me, but not all work the same, and you usually sacrifice speed for distance, and/or the inconvenience of having to manually switch hotspots - I wasn't willing to do any of that, which is how I ended up with mesh.

Go with Plume if you have the money - it actually doesn't work out to be crazy expensive compared to the alternatives, and it's super simple and really really fast.

That is something to consider too.  FWIW, I went with Lynksys router and Lynksys extender so it's seamless.  Point being, if you go the extender route, confirm this feature/compatibility.  Switching networks every time would be a pain.

anthrax

Quote from: anthrax on May 21, 2020, 09:14:40 AM
i've been having issues using my sonos out by the fire pit which is easily 200 feet from my router.  i thought about getting an extender, but maybe a new router is the way to go??  thoughts??

been doing a little research on this.  because i want to use sonos way far in the back yard, i don't think a normal extender will work for me.  a normal extender will create it's own network.  and i want to use my main network that has all my music on it.  that led me to a mesh extender.  it's a bit pricey, but if i can crank sonos 200-250 feet into my backyard, it'll be worth it.

anyone have any experience with mesh extenders?  here's one i'm liking...

https://www.crutchfield.com/p_941EX8000/NETGEAR-Nighthawk-X6S.html?tp=72165

sls.stormyrider

Got the netgear Orbi with satellites. Coverage is now the entire house, deck, pateio, back yard etc. Very happy with it. Easy install
"toss away stuff you don't need in the end
but keep what's important, and know who's your friend"
"It's a 106 miles to Chicago. We got a full tank of gas, half a pack of cigarettes, it's dark and we're wearing sunglasses."