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Thread: Mesh wifi kit

  1. #1
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    Mesh wifi kit

    Hi

    What are people using for mesh wifi these days?

    We have Virgin broadband and in most rooms things are fine with the wifi put out by the Virgin hub (Superb 3 I think), but due to limitations as to where we can put it, some rooms don't get wifi at all. In the room that my son uses for Xbox etc we solved that issue by using Powerline and plugging the devices into that.

    But in some of the other rooms (like half the kitchen) we really need proper wifi as plugging things in isn't an option.

    Upstairs its most fine at the moment, but we do have a garden shed that could do with being in reach of the signal too. i presume that once I plug something like a mesh system in, the router no longer provides wifi?

    There seems to be lots of choice out there so much real world opinions/experience would be great. Something simple to set up and use, but also easy to trouble shoot if needed.

  2. #2
    Master Alansmithee's Avatar
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    I have an Orbi RBK50 with two satellites and it has been absolutely rock steady. However at the moment - the Asus ZenWifi AX seems to be the one to beat in terms of price to features.

    I was looking at upgrading due to now having 1gig wifi and a few devices with Wifi 6 cards in them but I think I will hold on for Wifi 6E devices and future proof...

  3. #3
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    Buggger
    Last edited by Daniel; 29th November 2020 at 20:43.

  4. #4
    We have tried a few, BT whole home, Linksys Velop (our current), tenda nova. All are CC good Bt is the easiest to set up and run, Linksys has the most features but it does need resetting once a week and seams to fight with the skyQ.

    Make sure you Mesh can cope with the max speed of your WiFi, otherwise it will slow things down and turn off the virgin WiFi

  5. #5
    Recently installed a TP Link Deco 3 kit, very easy set up and has fixed my issues of sketchy connections in the middle of the house and the top floor. At £99 I think it’s as about the most cost effective as well
    https://www.currys.co.uk/gbuk/comput...03767-pdt.html
    Last edited by Franky Four Fingers; 29th November 2020 at 19:55.

  6. #6
    Craftsman leo1790's Avatar
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    We've got the tp link deco disc things. Work very well, got 3 in the house and one in the office up the garden.

    Sent from my Pixel 3 XL using Tapatalk

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by Alansmithee View Post
    I have an Orbi RBK50 with two satellites and it has been absolutely rock steady. However at the moment - the Asus ZenWifi AX seems to be the one to beat in terms of price to features.

    I was looking at upgrading due to now having 1gig wifi and a few devices with Wifi 6 cards in them but I think I will hold on for Wifi 6E devices and future proof...
    I'm using the same with one satellite and no issues at all. The satellite is connected by ethernet (backhauled) which makes a huge difference.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Franky Four Fingers View Post
    Recently installed a TP Link Deco 3 kit, very easy set up and has fixed my issues of sketchy connections in the middle of the house and the top floor. At £99 I think itís as about the most cost effective as well
    https://www.currys.co.uk/gbuk/comput...03767-pdt.html

    I have the same. In the first lockdown I moved my office from by the kitchen to a spare bedroom to accommodate the kids doing their home schooling. The WiFi coverage was terrible. I added an extender which helped, but still had a lot of drops. Video calls were especially bad. I change dover to the TP Link Deco 3 and has been night and day. Rarely an issue, no contention with the rest of the family (Netflix, wife on zoom calls, Kids on teams for school) and I can move around the house if I feel like it, without having to reconnect. Best £99 I've spend on work from home kit.

  9. #9
    Iím using a Deco P9 set up, and itís improved things immeasurably; and surprisinglyevery room on every floor now has good signal.
    It's just a matter of time...

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by gerrudd View Post
    I have the same. In the first lockdown I moved my office from by the kitchen to a spare bedroom to accommodate the kids doing their home schooling. The WiFi coverage was terrible. I added an extender which helped, but still had a lot of drops. Video calls were especially bad. I change dover to the TP Link Deco 3 and has been night and day. Rarely an issue, no contention with the rest of the family (Netflix, wife on zoom calls, Kids on teams for school) and I can move around the house if I feel like it, without having to reconnect. Best £99 I've spend on work from home kit.
    +1 also bought this early on in lockdown and has been fantastic - especially for £99. Highly recommend it if, like me, you just want something quick, simple, and painless to plug and play. What i love about it is each mesh unit has a couple of ethernet ports too, which I find really useful to further stabilise connection when working in home office.

  11. #11
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    BT Wholehome is very good now- it wasnít in the early days but a series of firmware updates and it is very solid now

  12. #12
    Master Alansmithee's Avatar
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    I personally would not get a mesh system without a dedicated back haul (a channel only used to communicate between the units and not for other devices)... often referred to as tri-band.

  13. #13
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    BT whole home user here - very satisfied

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Alansmithee View Post
    I personally would not get a mesh system without a dedicated back haul (a channel only used to communicate between the units and not for other devices)... often referred to as tri-band.
    Either that or hard wire them if possible or use the higher speed home plugs to create an Ethernet backhaul.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Captain Morgan View Post
    Either that or hard wire them if possible or use the higher speed home plugs to create an Ethernet backhaul.
    I don't think I'll be able to hard-wire them together.

    Will I still be able to use the power-line plugs that I have? Presuming that I can as they don't rely on wifi and are cabled into the router.

    Does Sonos just need one of the Sonos devices plugged into one of the mesh systems or into a specific one?

    If I can't wire the mesh units together, how do I create an Ethernet backhaul?

    The TP Deco ones look like they could do what I need wifi-wise, just want to make sure they will work with the other things I have in place already. It seems I will be able to add other items from the TP range at some point, not necessarily the same models. Is that true?

    Anything to consider to get a bit of future-proofing - without spending a fortune?

    Thanks
    Last edited by bambam; 30th November 2020 at 00:12.

  16. #16
    Master Skier's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Alansmithee View Post
    I personally would not get a mesh system without a dedicated back haul (a channel only used to communicate between the units and not for other devices)... often referred to as tri-band.
    Why? You first have to understand what you're trying to achieve and what your baseline Internet speed is. When I'm looking at a mesh network I don't give a rats behind whether it has a dedicated backhaul, what I do care about is that I get reception and what speed I get at various locations in my property (and I understand the connection as I have a technical background). I get my broadband via the O2 4G network and get a download speed of around 50Mbps and upload around 15Mbps. Plenty to stream 2 x 4k video and upload data from my security cameras. As with all things, it's a compromise and using a mesh network in my home has been a revelation for us all with nothing negative whatsoever.
    Last edited by Skier; 3rd December 2020 at 14:26.

  17. #17
    Craftsman Halitosis's Avatar
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    We are also on Virgin fibre and connected a LINKSYS mesh. 3 units in 3 downstairs rooms and it is faultless - well over 200 in every room on every floor of the house. 3 of us working from home and 2 teens hammering the wifi, I highly recommend it

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by bambam View Post
    I don't think I'll be able to hard-wire them together.

    Will I still be able to use the power-line plugs that I have? Presuming that I can as they don't rely on wifi and are cabled into the router.


    Does Sonos just need one of the Sonos devices plugged into one of the mesh systems or into a specific one?
    Yep correct to both the existing plugs will keep working and a single hardwired Sonos will generate the Sonos mesh

    Quote Originally Posted by bambam View Post
    If I can't wire the mesh units together, how do I create an Ethernet backhaul?
    Itís a question of speed really, most mesh units use the 5ghz frq to citrate the backhaul link three band offerings have 2x5ghz channels one for users one for backhaul.

    Backhaul is the connection between mesh units and your router so a single mesh node has to be hardwired to your router and the other nodes connect to the router via the first hardwired node.

    Another rule of thumb is that cheaper solutions generally have 2 channels and more expensive ones 3.

    If you only have a single 5ghz channel then user and backhaul data have to share, think of it like a pipe it can only flow a given amount of water (generally) 50% is allocated for backhaul, meaning the users max speed is impacted.

    Also hardwiring can allow the nodes to be farther apart, as the signal will be weaker on the fringes but the backhaul is still stable.

    The 5ghz frq is generally accepted to have grater speed but lower penetration of walls etc which can lead to additional deployments to ensure a stable mesh

    That said it all depends on your planned use case if you have a lot of internal data transfer (nas backups, streaming nas, etc) the overall internal speed might be a higher priority, if itís just general browsing and office tasks then a stable connection in excess of your isp speed might be all you need.

    As said before you can create the backhaul via homeplugs if Ethernet is not an option the detail come down to performance and environmental questions to decide if this is the right option or not.

    This can be done at a later date if you found you have performance / speed / range issues, but obviously depends on the performance of homeplugs at your property.

    Quote Originally Posted by bambam View Post

    The TP Deco ones look like they could do what I need wifi-wise, just want to make sure they will work with the other things I have in place already. It seems I will be able to add other items from the TP range at some point, not necessarily the same models. Is that true?
    Errr donít know. What do you mean? What are the future plans...

    One point to to remember is you need to turn off the wireless on your isp router and have all wireless handled by the mesh solution for the handover to work as expected

    Quote Originally Posted by bambam View Post

    Anything to consider to get a bit of future-proofing - without spending a fortune?

    Thanks
    Also consider the unifi home mesh systems

  19. #19
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    we are on virgin and I use an Orbi never have any issues with it except when the cleaner unplugs a satellite to plug in a hoover.
    Setting up the virgin router to work with it was a bit of a faff but there are plenty of guides on how to out there. I just had to have the virgin in normal router mode with wifi off rather than modem only mode . Not a biggie really.

  20. #20
    Master Alansmithee's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Skier View Post
    Why? You first have to understand what you're trying to achieve and what your baseline Internet speed is.
    1gig - hence why I want dedicated backhaul for places I cannot run cable.


    I get my broadband via the O2 4G network and get a download speed of around 50Mbps and upload around 15Mbps.
    I can understand with such slow internet why it would not bother you - cheaper kit would be fine.
    Last edited by Alansmithee; 30th November 2020 at 11:47.

  21. #21
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    This sounds interesting as it seems to allow you to keep using your existing fairly strong wireless router but adds mesh to that via powerline

    Not compatible with pre-existing powerlines which might be an issue?

    https://www.cordbusters.co.uk/devolo...erline-review/

  22. #22
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    Another +1 for BT WholeHome Wifi mesh here.

    At start of lockdown 1, zoom calls were painful, with me sounding like Max Headroom (for those old enough to remember him!).

    Bought BT system and added in 2 extra hubs. Now have blistering WiFi throughout 3 story house, and in garden.

    Easy to set up, and there is an app to check speeds etc.

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Captain Morgan View Post
    Yep correct to both the existing plugs will keep working and a single hardwired Sonos will generate the Sonos mesh



    Itís a question of speed really, most mesh units use the 5ghz frq to citrate the backhaul link three band offerings have 2x5ghz channels one for users one for backhaul.

    Backhaul is the connection between mesh units and your router so a single mesh node has to be hardwired to your router and the other nodes connect to the router via the first hardwired node.

    Another rule of thumb is that cheaper solutions generally have 2 channels and more expensive ones 3.

    If you only have a single 5ghz channel then user and backhaul data have to share, think of it like a pipe it can only flow a given amount of water (generally) 50% is allocated for backhaul, meaning the users max speed is impacted.

    Also hardwiring can allow the nodes to be farther apart, as the signal will be weaker on the fringes but the backhaul is still stable.

    The 5ghz frq is generally accepted to have grater speed but lower penetration of walls etc which can lead to additional deployments to ensure a stable mesh

    That said it all depends on your planned use case if you have a lot of internal data transfer (nas backups, streaming nas, etc) the overall internal speed might be a higher priority, if itís just general browsing and office tasks then a stable connection in excess of your isp speed might be all you need.

    As said before you can create the backhaul via homeplugs if Ethernet is not an option the detail come down to performance and environmental questions to decide if this is the right option or not.

    This can be done at a later date if you found you have performance / speed / range issues, but obviously depends on the performance of homeplugs at your property.



    Errr donít know. What do you mean? What are the future plans...

    One point to to remember is you need to turn off the wireless on your isp router and have all wireless handled by the mesh solution for the handover to work as expected



    Also consider the unifi home mesh systems
    Thanks for that, very useful.

    What I meant in the part that wasnít clear is that it seems like the different items in the TP range are compatible with each other - for example you can have a mix and match system comprising various TP Deco models, along with power line plugs etc. That is quite attractive.
    The power line connection I have now between the router and the room furthest away on the same floor is quite good - at least I havenít heard any complaints from the kids and they spend a lot of time in there streaming stuff. So Iím thinking that I could add another TP power line device and use that as the back haul channel.

    That way I get to strengthen the WiFi and re-use the existing items Iíve already bought and I can continue to use the Virgin hub as a router - I have a network switch plugged into it for example.

    Am I reading this right?

  24. #24
    Craftsman skmark's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Alansmithee View Post
    However at the moment - the Asus ZenWifi AX seems to be the one to beat in terms of price to features.

    I was looking at upgrading due to now having 1gig wifi and a few devices with Wifi 6 cards in them but I think I will hold on for Wifi 6E devices and future proof...
    I've been looking into this for the last few weeks too. and agree totally with the above. Whilst we currently have little in the way of Wifi 6 devices it seems to make sense to future proof at this point in time.

    What I have noticed though is that the Asus Zen Wifi 6 XT8 as a twin pack seems to be going out of stock everywhere and as such is creeping up in price. Never mind Black Friday/Cyber Monday, this has gone up significantly in price over the last 2 weeks alone. I think I'm going to wait until stock returns and it comes back down under the £400 mark.

  25. #25
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    Iím going to try and draw a diagram to show what Iím thinking and upload it here. Thought that might be the easiest option.

  26. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by bambam View Post
    Thanks for that, very useful.

    What I meant in the part that wasnít clear is that it seems like the different items in the TP range are compatible with each other - for example you can have a mix and match system comprising various TP Deco models, along with power line plugs etc. That is quite attractive.
    The power line connection I have now between the router and the room furthest away on the same floor is quite good - at least I havenít heard any complaints from the kids and they spend a lot of time in there streaming stuff. So Iím thinking that I could add another TP power line device and use that as the back haul channel.

    That way I get to strengthen the WiFi and re-use the existing items Iíve already bought and I can continue to use the Virgin hub as a router - I have a network switch plugged into it for example.

    Am I reading this right?
    Generally speaking:

    There is no need to have a mesh system from the same manufacturer as your power line adapters. But it is good practice to have power line adapters from the same manufacturer and range.

    I would always buy a mesh system that allows both wired and wireless backhaul (3 band/channel) and sold the mesh nodes individually so I could remove dead spots / expand into garage or garden office if needed.

    You normally disable WiFi on your isp router and plug in the master mesh node to the isp router.

    Youíd have a power line plugged into the router as now and if your using power line for the back haul one with each mesh node.

    Itís a question of where your dead spots are and home layout as to how many and where you place the nodes

  27. #27
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    I had a mish mash of routers acquired over the years and a load of power line ethernet connections running as well. It, mostly, worked fine aside from issues when moving around the house where a device would need to hop from one router to another. Unless the signal was all but noise most devices would steadfastly hold on to the weak router rather than hop across to a stronger one and this was a pain. Very occasionally, also, something would drop and I would end up systematically rebooting everything.

    In the end I cleared all of it out and installed Orbi. We have a Virgin Superhub in modem only mode which is hardwired to one of the Orbi's and a second sat unit communicates with it. These two units cover our reasonably big house, most of it being brick and some internal cavity walls where extensions have been added. It's been rock solid.

    The second orbi , being RBR50 has spare wired ethernet ports and this runs SonosNet nicely. While I can control Sonos with tablets or phones, I love the convenience of the old controller and this requires SonosNet (or so Sonos told me).

    I have ethernet in one of the sheds as well. The shed is a little too far to expect the Orbi to successfully broadcast so I ran wired ethernet out there and have a separate non Orbi router. It would have been nice to add a third Orbi but I couldn't justify the cost. It does mean that the SSID's in the shed are different and router hop isn't always seamless but it does work and there is plenty of bandwidth everywhere now, including the garden.

    While mesh can be expensive, I love it for the simplicity and rock solid operation.

  28. #28
    Master bomberman's Avatar
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    I have 3 Deco M5ís and am with Virgin.
    Should have bought these ages ago, saved no end of grief with Virgins attempt to provide reliable WiFi with their junk router making all sorts to changes to the settings.
    I paid £150 from Amazon UK, but have seen these for around £120>£130.

    B

  29. #29
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    We are also Virgin. The router was not providing coverage and we complained so they sent us a plug in thing like a TP link but even more bulky. This was literally worse than useless and it cost £3 extra on the bill so I sent it back. While shopping in Aldi I spotted a two-way socket with usb that includes a wifi extender function. As the front bedroom was the worst point in the house I replaced one of the sockets with this device and it's really great. No problem with coverage now and it was £18.95. I haven't seen any more in Aldi but I would have another in the kitchen to improve signal in the shed.
    Identical to the BG wifi extender socket on ebay and amazon
    Last edited by Harry Smith; 30th November 2020 at 22:56.

  30. #30
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    Eero.

    Installed at mine and parents, both have VM connections.

    Had looked at Orbi but decideded against it.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  31. #31
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    Here is a poorly drawn layout of what I have in mind:



    For some reason I had real issues with this image so when it finally uploaded I wasn't going to start messing with it.

    There should be a difference in the blues to show what already exists and what would need to be bought - not sure that comes through clearly.

    In essence, I have 2 TP Powerline plugs already (connected to Virgin router and the Kids room) and a network switch and a NAS. The Sonos in green already exists.

    New would be the TP Deco (or whatever system) and any power line plugs I would need in addition to create the back-haul (red line in diagram).

    Happy to get advice/opinions/critique.

    Thanks
    Last edited by bambam; 1st December 2020 at 12:06.

  32. #32
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    Hard to see the detail on your diagram but from your text it sounds like you are on the right lines

    Take a methodical approach such as introducing and testing the new powerline units before commissioning the mesh system to help with any trouble shooting

    In an ideal world you would have the the devices that most heavily use the nas on the same switch but itís hard to tell whatís using other than Sonos

    When commissioning the mesh ensure you know what (if any) step you need to set up a wired backhaul

    Let us know how you go...

  33. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by Captain Morgan View Post
    Hard to see the detail on your diagram but from your text it sounds like you are on the right lines

    Take a methodical approach such as introducing and testing the new powerline units before commissioning the mesh system to help with any trouble shooting

    In an ideal world you would have the the devices that most heavily use the nas on the same switch but itís hard to tell whatís using other than Sonos

    When commissioning the mesh ensure you know what (if any) step you need to set up a wired backhaul

    Let us know how you go...
    Thanks.

    The Nas is mainly for the Sonos by every now and then we upload pictures to it etc. But I normally do that via a wired connection anyway.

    Iím thinking of the TP Deco system so will see what needs to be done to create the back haul.

    Cheers

  34. #34
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    Have been using Linksys Velop with BT FTTP @ 900mbps. They work very well. Tried to hardwire with some gigabit power line adapters but they were disappointing.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  35. #35
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    Put unifi in here with just wireless backhaul. Works pretty well and sorted out a lot of devices connectivity issues. I think itís more prosumer/business use so harder to set up but has a lot of features. They do long range APs but not tried those.

  36. #36
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    Also with Virgin here and after lots of faffing about 3 engineer visits etc
    Bought a google nest mesh system ans now have good Wi-Fi throughout the 3 floors

  37. #37
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    Still looking into this (Ok, got distracted with some other things).

    Have found out that only certain of the TP range will work with power line, and also the power lines I already have probably won't work (not powerful enough, think they are AV500's with transmission rates of up to 500Mbps and it seems that I'd require 1gig throughput to use them for power line backhaul).

    So, current thinking is to not bother with a dedicated wired or power line backhaul and just go for better wifi around the house. Our current Virgin service is only 100Mbps anyway. If I find that i need dedicated backhaul then I'll have to find a way to connect via a cable.

    From what I've read and the posts on here I'm thinking the following could work:

    - TP Link Deco M4 3-pack
    - Connect one into Virgin router
    - Install a network switch if needed into the Deco that is plugged into the Virgin router (to allow extra items to be plugged in in the same way they are on the Virgin router presently). This will be used for plugging in a Sonos unit; the NAS drive (so far).


    One question that comes to mind - the existing power line is connected to the Virgin router, presume this will need to be connected to the main Deco unit to continue to work? I'm presuming that once the Virgin router is put into non-wifi mode, then it will only deliver the connection into the Deco unit and anything that remains plugged into the Virgin router won't work?


    Thanks all. Getting there I think.

  38. #38
    Craftsman skmark's Avatar
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    Iím with Virgin too and just yesterday installed an Asus Zenwifi 6 XT8. I junked all of the TP-Link power line stuff previously littering the house and Boom! I now have great wifi everywhere. Previous blank areas now have 200MB plus....Iíve even got over 150MB in the garden shed..... Very impressed, it was expensive but easy to setup and so far works great. Being wifi6 future proof (for now) too.


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  39. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by bambam View Post
    Still looking into this (Ok, got distracted with some other things).

    Have found out that only certain of the TP range will work with power line, and also the power lines I already have probably won't work (not powerful enough, think they are AV500's with transmission rates of up to 500Mbps and it seems that I'd require 1gig throughput to use them for power line backhaul).

    So, current thinking is to not bother with a dedicated wired or power line backhaul and just go for better wifi around the house. Our current Virgin service is only 100Mbps anyway. If I find that i need dedicated backhaul then I'll have to find a way to connect via a cable.

    From what I've read and the posts on here I'm thinking the following could work:

    - TP Link Deco M4 3-pack
    - Connect one into Virgin router
    - Install a network switch if needed into the Deco that is plugged into the Virgin router (to allow extra items to be plugged in in the same way they are on the Virgin router presently). This will be used for plugging in a Sonos unit; the NAS drive (so far).


    One question that comes to mind - the existing power line is connected to the Virgin router, presume this will need to be connected to the main Deco unit to continue to work? I'm presuming that once the Virgin router is put into non-wifi mode, then it will only deliver the connection into the Deco unit and anything that remains plugged into the Virgin router won't work?


    Thanks all. Getting there I think.
    Yes, the lowest port on the super hub remains active and this is normally fed into the WAN port of, in my case, the Orbi but probably the same with the Deco. All other ports are inactive. Even if they were still active you may run into subnet issues whereby devices plugged into the SH were not recognised by anything connected to the Deco.

  40. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by series5 View Post
    Yes, the lowest port on the super hub remains active and this is normally fed into the WAN port of, in my case, the Orbi but probably the same with the Deco. All other ports are inactive. Even if they were still active you may run into subnet issues whereby devices plugged into the SH were not recognised by anything connected to the Deco.
    Thanks. So Iíll need a new network switch to plug a few other things in as the Deco units only have 2 ports. Thatís ok - just need to work out where to plug it all into (power wise).
    My main objective is to get strong WiFi around the various rooms, with a bit of flexibility and without spending too much. Normally I start these things and then the budget goes out of the window!

  41. #41
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    Quote Originally Posted by bambam View Post
    Thanks. So Iíll need a new network switch to plug a few other things in as the Deco units only have 2 ports. Thatís ok - just need to work out where to plug it all into (power wise).
    My main objective is to get strong WiFi around the various rooms, with a bit of flexibility and without spending too much. Normally I start these things and then the budget goes out of the window!
    Indeed, you probably will. This was one of the reasons why I went down the Orbi route simply because each Orbi has four ports available. This was especially useful on our satellite because it allowed me to ethernet wire in my Sonos player because I wanted to have SonosNet active (as well as wi-fi) so that my ancient Sonos controller could still be used. This still left me with spares, just 'cos.

    It is amazing though how having an abundance of ethernet ports is still useful. I have a switch connected to my main Orbi and, in total, run eight ethernet wired devices from that Orbi.

  42. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by bambam View Post
    Still looking into this (Ok, got distracted with some other things).

    Have found out that only certain of the TP range will work with power line, and also the power lines I already have probably won't work (not powerful enough, think they are AV500's with transmission rates of up to 500Mbps and it seems that I'd require 1gig throughput to use them for power line backhaul).

    So, current thinking is to not bother with a dedicated wired or power line backhaul and just go for better wifi around the house. Our current Virgin service is only 100Mbps anyway. If I find that i need dedicated backhaul then I'll have to find a way to connect via a cable.

    From what I've read and the posts on here I'm thinking the following could work:

    - TP Link Deco M4 3-pack
    - Connect one into Virgin router
    - Install a network switch if needed into the Deco that is plugged into the Virgin router (to allow extra items to be plugged in in the same way they are on the Virgin router presently). This will be used for plugging in a Sonos unit; the NAS drive (so far).


    One question that comes to mind - the existing power line is connected to the Virgin router, presume this will need to be connected to the main Deco unit to continue to work? I'm presuming that once the Virgin router is put into non-wifi mode, then it will only deliver the connection into the Deco unit and anything that remains plugged into the Virgin router won't work?


    Thanks all. Getting there I think.

    You might be over thinking some of this.

    What tp link mesh systems do you think don’t work with powerline backhaul?
    Can you share the source.

    I had a quick Google but could only find reference to a unit with built in powerline having interoperability issues.

    My understanding is if the mesh unit offers Ethernet backhaul option you can use powerline to provide the Ethernet link.


    Re speed why do you need 1G, do you have 1G broad band?
    Generally the aim of a hardwired backhaul is for stability, Increasing range between mesh nodes compared to a wireless backhaul or to improve speed.

    You’ve already said you dont have much internal network traffic, just Sonos and some backup traffic, so if you have more bandwidth with your current powerline adapters than your incoming broadband speed why upgrade?

    A 500m or 1G backhaul won’t make a 100m broadband supply any faster.

    Re the router port question you should be disabling the wifi on your router not turning it into modem mode, you still want it to act as a router.

    You just plug the master node into the router and put the new powerline adapters where the slave nodes are located
    Last edited by Captain Morgan; 9th December 2020 at 21:17.

  43. #43
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    Apologies I misunderstood some of your post.

    A little more digging showed there might be some temperamental behaviour on the tpís with a wired backhaul and as Iíve not play with it myself you might be better off wireless and see how that fairs.

    If you are going with the wireless backhaul then you just plug one node into the router and disable wireless on the router.

    If your router is in the same location as the Sonos and nas are you short of ports hence the switch q?
    If so the deco appears to have two Ethernet port and so you can use it to move a either the nas or Sonos off the router and free a port up.

  44. #44
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    Quote Originally Posted by Captain Morgan View Post
    Apologies I misunderstood some of your post.

    A little more digging showed there might be some temperamental behaviour on the tp’s with a wired backhaul and as I’ve not play with it myself you might be better off wireless and see how that fairs.

    If you are going with the wireless backhaul then you just plug one node into the router and disable wireless on the router.

    If your router is in the same location as the Sonos and nas are you short of ports hence the switch q?
    If so the deco appears to have two Ethernet port and so you can use it to move a either the nas or Sonos off the router and free a port up.
    Thanks. I can’t remember where I read about the Deco units needing more up-to-date power line plugs than the AV500 ones that I have. Will try and find it again. From what I remember, it seems to be the more expensive Deco units that support that option.

    The current set-up is quite complicated as the NAS is in another room and is connected to the router via a Netgear switch which is in turn connected to the router. The Virgin router has about 4 Lan cables plugged into right now and I had read that to get Sonos to work properly it was better to use the Deco as a the router - therefore I’d need more than 2 ports, hence the need for an additional switch to connect to the Deco.

    It’s the Deco M5 that I’m looking at - seems like a good way to get going.

    Cheers

    EDIT - Found the place re the power line - https://www.tp-link.com/us/support/faq/2401/

    It is only the Deco P7 and P9 that support power line back-haul.
    Last edited by bambam; 10th December 2020 at 15:59.

  45. #45
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    Quote Originally Posted by bambam View Post
    Thanks. I can’t remember where I read about the Deco units needing more up-to-date power line plugs than the AV500 ones that I have. Will try and find it again. From what I remember, it seems to be the more expensive Deco units that support that option.

    The current set-up is quite complicated as the NAS is in another room and is connected to the router via a Netgear switch which is in turn connected to the router. The Virgin router has about 4 Lan cables plugged into right now and I had read that to get Sonos to work properly it was better to use the Deco as a the router - therefore I’d need more than 2 ports, hence the need for an additional switch to connect to the Deco.

    It’s the Deco M5 that I’m looking at - seems like a good way to get going.

    Cheers

    EDIT - Found the place re the power line - https://www.tp-link.com/us/support/faq/2401/

    It is only the Deco P7 and P9 that support power line back-haul.
    As I suspected that article is referencing devices that have the powerline devices built into the mesh units so they are mesh and powerline all in one.

    In your case (if you wanted to) you can still use stand alone powerline adapters but it looks like you would have to use the deco in access point mode.

    Have you seen the article on access point vs router mode on the deco’s?

    https://www.tp-link.com/uk/support/faq/2399/

    Where you connect the Sonos and nas will have more to do with what mode you choose, in your case if it was me I’d use the access point mode to avoid the chance of running two routers and the networking issues that can cause.

    If the nas was connected to the virgin router and Sonos to the deco router for instance you could well see connectivity issues as they would be different networks (segments).


    In ap mode you should be able to disconnect one port that’s in use connect the deco and use the second port on it for the device you disconnected. Saves buying a switch for one port.

    All good fun eh!

  46. #46
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    Quote Originally Posted by Captain Morgan View Post
    As I suspected that article is referencing devices that have the powerline devices built into the mesh units so they are mesh and powerline all in one.

    In your case (if you wanted to) you can still use stand alone powerline adapters but it looks like you would have to use the deco in access point mode.

    Have you seen the article on access point vs router mode on the deco’s?

    https://www.tp-link.com/uk/support/faq/2399/

    Where you connect the Sonos and nas will have more to do with what mode you choose, in your case if it was me I’d use the access point mode to avoid the chance of running two routers and the networking issues that can cause.

    If the nas was connected to the virgin router and Sonos to the deco router for instance you could well see connectivity issues as they would be different networks (segments).


    In ap mode you should be able to disconnect one port that’s in use connect the deco and use the second port on it for the device you disconnected. Saves buying a switch for one port.

    All good fun eh!
    Thanks. All ordered now. Went for the Deco M5 3-pack along with a 8 port switch (just for flexibility and its only £15 more). Should be here Saturday, have some prep to do (route a couple of cables etc.) but will update once I've installed it...including how it works with existing powerline etc. Have done a few speed tests to get a gauge of current system and will repeat once new kit is installed to see what we get.

    In the meantime, thank you to everyone for your help.

  47. #47
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    I have to admit to not being up to speed with tech, and I have read this thread, but a quick question if I may?

    I live in a modest sized 1930's, 4 bed semi with Sky Q and their supplied router. I'm happy with the wifi downstairs but upstairs it is patchy and when using Zoom, X-box, etc upstairs, the connection often drops out. Sky provided me with a 'booster' of some sorts that is placed in the upstairs hallway but the wifi is still not great.

    In the future I have no plans to need wifi anywhere else like in the garage, shed, outside, etc. I only want good reception upstairs.

    To that end, I see a couple of pieces of kit recommended here like the TP Deco and BT Mini Home wifi for under £200.

    With this kind of kit - would I just plug in one of the supplied disc thingys into my Sky router, which is downstairs, put the other discs in the upstairs rooms and having RTFM, connect it all up and all should be good? Or, is it all a bit more complicate and should I spend more money on the hardware?

    Many thanks

  48. #48
    Eddiex, simple rule is ethernet whatever you can, especially any additional WiFi boxes/repeaters and keep the boxes away from TVs if you can. That will help a good amount.

    When you get these thing professionally installed now I think most people install in the ceiling and it looks like a smoke alarm. Spreads the signal better.

    Anyone taking Xbox seriously will want it connected by ethernet too.

  49. #49
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    Quote Originally Posted by wileeeeeey View Post
    Eddiex, simple rule is ethernet whatever you can, especially any additional WiFi boxes/repeaters and keep the boxes away from TVs if you can. That will help a good amount.

    When you get these thing professionally installed now I think most people install in the ceiling and it looks like a smoke alarm. Spreads the signal better.

    Anyone taking Xbox seriously will want it connected by ethernet too.
    Thanks - that makes sense. My router is right next to the TV (Ooops!) - so I'll move it and maybe get a better quality ethernet cable from the front door to the router.

    The Xbox issue is for one of my kids and he has suggested that the need ethernet connection in his room - but what a hassle that may be!!

  50. #50
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    Well so far this is a disaster!

    Put Virgin Media Hub 3 into modem mode, checked that I can access the internet via laptop and all ok.

    Go to set up Deco and it can't connect to the internet. TP Link very little help so far.

    If i put the VM hub into router mode then Deco can access the internet, but then I have to run it as an access point.

    Tearing my hair out.

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