I've a WRT1900ACS running LEDE 17.01.4 as my primary router, and a WRT32X running OpenWRT setup as a repeater using these instructions.
It works well. However, running a speedtest on openspeedtest.com while connected to the primary router runs at a steady 38.5Mbps/down (my max). The repeater runs identically if connected over ethernet, but the wifi starts at around 30Mbps and slows to 15-20Mbps. The repeater is replacing a Netgear D6400 running dd-wrt in repeater bridge mode which performed very well, so I know the positioning is good and the wired performance of the repeater shows that as well.
Can anyone help me get to the bottom of why the wifi performance is relatively poor?
While I haven't tried WDS on the mvebu platform I would highly suggest that you use Master instead of 17.X/18.X on both routers. With WDS on mt76 I seem to get best performance if I can link using 5GHz (without other clients connected) and use the other radio (2.4G) for clients on both ends. Been running this setup for months and it works very well.
The limitation with WDS on those specific routers will be seen if you're using multiple SSIDs on the same radio. In that case, both will have to be STA or AP (but not both WDS). I'm virtually certain the WRT1900AC V1 (original model in the series) will support mixed operation, but it's been a long while since I tested that. Obviously my testing may be flawed (operator error) but it's impossible to read the nonexistent manual.
I buckled down and have a fully routed network -- each router manages its own network. There's obviously no performance degradation but you need to manage the routing between networks.
Late to the party, but with WRT3200ACM on 21.02.2 and WRT32X on 21.02.3 I was getting ~8Mbps throughput wired when AP WDS on the former (multiple SSIDs).
When defaulted to regular AP and simple having separate network on the repeater with its own DHCP I'm back to ~70-80Mbps.