Cheap router with BEAMFORMING


#1

I am looking for a cheap dualband router with beamforming. The cheapest router I have found, is the TP-Link Archer C9 AC1900. Unfortunately the C9 "stands" and is very high, so it doesn't fit for me. Can you recommend another device, which is not very expensive?


#2

Define "not very expensive" please.

Also, asking for the latest wireless chipsets with multiple RF chains (on multiple bands) and "cheap" is going to be quite a challenge, especially if you want to throw in "reliable", or even just "works", in your list of requirements.


#3

Good question, what is expensive :wink: I would like to say a price near a Zyxel Armor Z2 AC2600 MU-MIMO [NBG6817] ist too expensive, because in this case, I would buy a NBG6817.

I found an Asus RT-AC58U AC1300, but I have no idea if this one is too slow for video streams with high resolutions. I expect that it works with 1920x1080, better 3840x2160.

There is also the Linksys MAX-STREAM EA8500-EU Wireless AC2600 Router, which is very close to the Zyxel. (180 vs. 150ÔéČ).

That's all I found, which is cheaper than the NBG6817.


#4

Get away from prices as your only decisive factor, as your example -the TP-Link Archer C9- is a broadcom device with two unsupported (BCM4360) wireless cards and therefore remains unusable under OpenWrt (if you define wireless support as important) regardless of its price.


#5

Consider getting an access point separate from the router. Like a tp-link eap series:

add an espressobin to be your router, and voila.


#6

As far as I know beamforming and MU-MINO is not currently supported by OpenWRT.


#7

First I have to say, I have a very special situation here, which I solved with 2 TP-Link TL-WR1043ND and openwrt, I could not solve this with the stock FW. Now I want dual band.

It is not possible to use an ethernet cable to another router, I have to use Wifi!

I want to connect the router (in which mode ever) to a linux dvb-box via an ethernet cable. In other words the router should be used like a simple wifi-usb-stick. Since there are troubles with usb-drivers and the dvb-box, I want a router.

When I read manuals, I always read I have to use an ethernet cable in access point mode, which is not possible. I want to use Wifi instead.

Later I want to connect the router to a tv via ethernet-cable too.

So the EAP225 looks interesting, but doesn't fit my needs. I also didn't find, that the eap225 is supported by openwrt, but there is a similar device from Ubiquity with openwrt support.

RE C9, I learned that there is difference between I want to buy a router which is supported by OpenWrt and I have a router and want to know if it is supported by OpenWrt.

What do you think about the Asus RT-AC58U AC1300 for my needs? The con of the RT-AC58U is, that it is not so easy to install openwrt. Compare eg How to install OpenWrt in Asus RT-AC58U?

On the other hand I read, that the problems could be similiar with a Linksys MAX-STREAM EA8500 with a newer mpdel.

It looks like that both devices cannot be configured with Stock-FW for my needs and I need openwrt.


#8

This is a hardware feature. You simply need a router with easily-supported components and WiFi chip.


#9

Does Archer C2600 (Qualcomm Chipset) support Beamforming/MU-MIMO in OpenWRT?

I suppose it's not "only" a hardware function, the main driver shoud be able to handle it. For example, hardware NAT, is a hardware function implemented in all routers, but without the correct software/driver hardware NAT doesn't work.


#10

I just noted to you that MU-MIMO is hardware.

This mean if the hardware supports MU-MIMO, it works in OpenWrt.


#11

@lleachii take a look here: https://wireless.wiki.kernel.org/en/users/drivers/ath10k/configuration

It seems we have to touch something in wifi config file for enabling MU-MIMO.


#12

and if the driver support is lousy it might very well perform worse than a regular 300M wireless N device so what is your point here.


#13

That's not a matter of OpenWrt thought, that's upstream. Point - any work needed isn't exclusive to OpenWrt.


#14

You are talking about bridging two Ethernet networks across a wifi link. As far as I know this is only possible with the nonstandard (pseudo standard?) WDS system, some driver's support this better than others. Also you can do it with 802.11s and batmanadv, possibly. In general my experience with WDS was it cut out randomly. I strongly suggest wires or powerline, only try to do wifi if you are talking a distance link, a separate building or across town or the like.


#15

I tried powerline, it is slower than Wifi, unfortunately.

I started Recommendation for WDS-Router (Wifi bridge, Wifi client)


#16

well WDS is slower than wifi too. Specifically it cuts your bandwidth in half because it needs to receive a packet, and then retransmit a packet on the same channel (unless you're using say 2.4Ghz to access and 5Ghz as a backhaul).

My experience with powerline is I can get 50Mbps pretty reliably, and I haven't even tried to see if switching phases would help. If I needed real speed to my powerline spot I'd run a cat5e through the attic over there, but fortunately 50Mbps is fine for the purposes I'm using it for (a media pc to watch Sling and movies off my file server) it also provides the backhaul to an AP in the front of my house that can serve my living room and my front porch.

When you tried powerline did you get substantially less than 50Mbps?


#17

I switched phases and got around 70Mbps so apparently modern powerline homeplug AV2 devices work well across phases. I'm using Zyxel AV2000 devices.

BTW although my bufferbloat is minimal on direct ethernet links, the AV link itself does have some bufferbloat but it seems to manage it to a consistent, about 40ms, which as long as it's not too jittery should allow VOIP jitter buffers to mask it just fine. I don't notice voice problems when my phone is connected to the AP that's on that link.


#18

I have 5(!) not 50 with powerline and 8 with wifi. This is displayed when copying a file from a linux pc to a 2,5"-harddrive in a linux dvb-box using lftp.


#19

5 Mega Bits or 5 Mega Bytes ? because 5 mega bytes/s is 40 mega bits/s

you might try using iperf3 or similar to test the actual link leaving the filesystem out of it. It's possible the 2.5 inch HD is the bottleneck and you'd be ok if you just tuned that.

Also how far is this thing away? Especially how much power line cable do you expect here? if it's a half kilometer to your barn on the back acres that's a different story.

8 Mbps is pretty slow for wifi, so that's why I wonder if you're talking a pretty long link.


#20

I cannot do a test with the plugs at the moment, but I will try to do it later. They are prepared for return in a parcel.

I did 2 tests.

This one is between Ethernet-cables from a Linux-PC to a VU+ Duo2 dvb-box via Ethernet:

time lftp -e "mirror -R extr /hdd/test/ -e; exit" -u root, 192.168.178.115
Neu: 1 Datei, 0 Verkn├╝pfungen                                           
1091783290 Bytes ├╝bertragen in 26 Sekunden (39.92 MiB/s)

real	0m26,190s
user	0m0,292s
sys	0m0,959s

This one is via Wifi from the same Linux PC with the same file to an AX HD 51 dvb-box using a TP-Link TL-WR1043ND with openwrt as AP.

time lftp -e "mirror -R extr /hdd/test/ -e; exit" -u root, 192.168.178.117
Neu: 1 Datei, 0 Verkn├╝pfungen                                          
1091783290 Bytes ├╝bertragen in 336 Sekunden (3.10 MiB/s)

real	5m36,593s
user	0m0,314s
sys	0m1,045s

Can you recommend another method to test the speed with my linux pc?