Mesh wifi

Discussion in 'Audio Visual' started by tommythefox, 30 Jan 2021.

  1. tommythefox

    tommythefox

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    Hi don’t know if I am in the right section .I have a security camera outside my garage
    but the wifi is very weak and if I set up a mesh system by placing one mesh unit in the garage and the other mesh unit by my router would that give me enough wifi signal for the outside camera to function properly.
    Cheers.
     
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  3. Lucid

    Lucid

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    Two mesh Wi-Fi nodes really isn't enough to form an effective mesh. If there's any improvement it's more likely to be because the mesh units have better range than your home Wi-Fi router.

    Are you using the wireless router that came free from your Internet Service Provider? If so, then that could be a big part of the reason why the signal isn't great from your wireless CCTV cam.

    Other factors are Wi-Fi set-up:
    - whether the cameras run on 2.4GHz or 5Ghz
    - where the wireless router is placed (tucked away somewhere 'neat' often means the wireless range is crippled)
    - whether the router supports individual layers for 2.4Ghz and 5Ghz to run independently
    - if the router is set to channel hop if it detects competing Wi-Fi signals (some connected devices cope okay with this, but others have a tough time responding to wireless channel changes)
    - how much signal intrusion you're getting from your neighbours
    - whether you're running fixed or dynamic (DHCP) IP addresses for key devices
    - distance to the connected devices (2.4GHz has longer reach than 5Ghz)
    - what's in-between the router and the camera (thick walls, metal etc)
    - how many other wireless devices you're running in the house (smart phones, tablets, wireless gaming, smart TVs, Wi-Fi printer, streamers etc)

    The above list isn't exhaustive.

    When it comes to Wi-Fi repeaters and mesh devices, quality is really important. Cheap is often a false economy. You'll probably find that a simple wireless repeater systems including mesh devices that pick up and rebroadcast the wireless signal also reduce the Wi-Fi speeds as part of the trade-off for extending the range. Beware too the advertising promises. They'll quote the best case scenario figures for range and speed. What you get in the real world can be very different.

    A better solution is to use Ethernet cable part of the way to either a range extender or a mesh node device, and then let that device broadcast/receive wireless signals which are then communicated back to the router over a Gigabit Ethernet connection.
     
  4. tommythefox

    tommythefox

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    Hi Lucid thanks for the information I am not very technical but which do think would be the better option new router
    or a mesh system.I have three walls between the router and the garage were the camera is on a outside wall at the moment I have put a top-link extender in the garage the camera works ok but Internet speed my living room has drop
    by half.
    Cheer Tom
     
  5. Mottie

    Mottie

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    Sorry to jump in here but I have a similar problem. I have good Wifi downstairs in my house and downstairs I also have ethernet to my smart tv and firestick. I have my cctv dvr in my loft and that is also connected to ethernet. I have reasonable Wifi upstairs. My problem is that outside I have fitted a bird box with a Wifi camera and connection to that is intermittent. I would like to get some kind of device/repeater/extender or whatever they are called that my loft ethernet can be plugged into to give a stronger/better Wifi connection upstairs, especially to my bird box camera which is mounted under the eaves at the back of my house (router is downstairs at front of house). Obviously I’d need extra ports on that device, one to connect to the cctv dvr with a patch cable and perhaps a few spare ports so that I can eventually run a couple of ethernet cables to my upstairs smart tv. A real bonus would be that it can use the same router name and password as my existing one. Can anyone suggest a particular piece of equipment or at least tell me what it is called so that I can look for myself?
     
  6. Lucid

    Lucid

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    Trying to diagnose wireless problems remotely, and with only patchy non-technical descriptions is a bit of a non-starter. The best any of us can do is tell you the pros and cons of the various solutions.

    For example, you said your "Internet speed" has dropped by half in the living room since installing what I think might be a TP-Link extender that spell-check has changed to top-link. That could be because your devices in the living room are picking up a stronger signal from the TP-Link than your home router. If you recall, I said that repeaters/extenders will often have the effect of reducing the wireless speeds. That seems to be exactly what you're experiencing.

    If you're non-technical then you're going to have a hard time setting anything up so that fixes your camera problem without knackering the rest of the house Wi-Fi or wasting time and money. Just chucking money at the problem without some understanding of what's going on behind the scenes ain't going to work.

    This is one of the big drawbacks of wireless. It's seen as easy and convenient, which I totally understand. But in reality it's like building on poor foundations; sooner or later the cracks start to show. We've got so much gear relying on wireless such as smart heating, music streaming, smart phones/tablets/laptops, security cams, cordless home phones, office peripherals, games consoles, smart TVs/BD players/streamers etc. Then there's the overlap from neighbours wireless systems and sources of wireless interference in out own homes such as the 2.4GHz bleed from microwave ovens when running. It's all a big wobbly pile of tech.

    The reason it looks like things work seamlessly is often because a connected device holds a little reservoir of data to help cope with the breaks in service. For some activities this is fine and it helps paper over the cracks. However, for something like a live streaming application such as your wireless camera you're seeing the feed live, so any service drops become noticeable pretty quickly.

    Anyone who promises an easy solution to this either doesn't understand the problems well enough or is just trying to flog a bit of hardware regardless of whether it fixes anything or makes things worse, so beware Greeks bearing gifts. :whistle:

    If money isn't an issue, and you want this doing properly then have a look around for your local data network specialists. You want someone who can do a proper wireless survey, preferably with some data logging gear that can read what's happening over a 24-48 hour period. They should also take an inventory of the gear you own to weigh up its capabilities and requirements. Once the results are in, then they'll put together a custom solution for you. This will involve a mix setting your existing gear up and some changes in hardware plus some hardwiring of repeaters to fill in the wireless dead spots.

    Where money is tighter but you have the luxury of time then you can go the DIY route. You'll need to do a lot of background reading to get your knowledge level up.

    Where your router is ISP supplied then nine-times-out-of-10 it'll be a very basic device, so changing to something better is the first step in getting a better performing system. You want a Router such as a Netgear Nighthawk or similar that can run both 2.4GHz b/g/n and 5GHz ac as separate layers (dual band), and that also supports Mu-MIMO and beamforming.

    After that, wired Ethernet connections to range extenders (Mesh or simpler wireless ac devices) that also support dual band use. Depending on what you're trying to run, you might benefit from having the 2.4GHz connection set up as a separate Wi-Fi name so that it doesn't have to share network connections with other 2.4GHz devices in your home network.

    If you can, and if the camera supports it, run the Ethernet cable direct to your router. That will solve everything related to the camera issue.
     
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  8. Lucid

    Lucid

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    You need a Gigabit-speed Ethernet switch to share the wired connection between the CCTV NVR/DVR and another device.

    Once you have that, then the next thing is a Range Extender. You want one with support for the wireless standard that the birdbox cam uses. The range extender will connect to your home network via Ethernet from the switch. It will then provide a radio beacon for the wireless connection to the bird-cam.
     
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  9. Mottie

    Mottie

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    Thanks Lucid. The bird-cam only works on 2.4ghz so must I only get a 2.4ghz one or can I get a 2.4/5ghz and it will automatically synch to that? Also, as this is a range extender, does it automatically replicate my router name and password or does it come with its own name and password?
     
  10. sparkymarka

    sparkymarka

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    Take a look at draytek ap 900 access points I use one down in the garage fed by a cat 5 from the main router in the house..I use it to test cctv dvrs/nvrs it got 4 Ethernet ports onboard ....its been excellent ...paid about £25 off ebay
     
  11. Lucid

    Lucid

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    The name of the game here is Read the Instructions. Whether it's called a Range Extender or Wireless Access Point or a Gaming Adapter or some other variation is almost incidental as resellers tend to use the names interchangeably.

    Whats more important is understanding what a specific model offers as features.

    Yes, if you want, get a dual band device. Beware though that not everything that offers 2.4GHz and 5GHz can run both bands at the same time to service different devices simultaneously. Also, regarding wireless passwords, a decent device will give you both options. Again, RTM to understand exactly whats on offer.

    You see, once tour zeroed in on the sort of device you need, your natural inclination will be to look for something a bit cheaper from maybe a different brand or a lower priced model. That's fine so long as you keep checking whether the trade-off for a lower price means some features get dropped.

    Draytek is good gear. Just RTM again though to check that it meets your needs.
     
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