Wi-FI N OpenWrt enabled AP replacement for Wi-Fi AC AP

Dear readers,

I currently use a TP link TL-1043ND as main router with WI-FI disabled. This thing works fine with Openwrt 19.07.4 and SQM. It provides a solid 100/100Mbit/s which is more than enough for me. although it's starting to show it's age I am not planning to replace it soon.

I recently upgraded my in-house cables to Cat6 F/UTP cables with corresponding shielded connectors. Now it's time to upgrade my Wi-Fi. I tried the Xiaomi Mi4a gigabit router as AP but the OpenWrt enabled TP-Link Tl- 1043nd gave me much better ping, almost 0 bufferbloat and a great stable connection on 2.4Ghz. It however was painfully slow with Wi-Fi 4 (n) 1x1 35Mbit/s download speed on my laptop. I would love to go future proof so therefore this question:

Are there any LAN backed mesh AP's with Mu-Mimo minimum 2x2 wireless AC with full OpenWrt support (including vlan)? I am looking for 2 units with a total price under $300. Playing with a mesh package is not a problem for me. Omnidirectional 5Dbi antenna's are max since I want to create overlapping bubbles.

Especially if you're not happy with mt7621 and the mt76 wireless driver, the direct alternative would be ipq40xx for 2x2, maybe ipq8065 for 4x4 - depending on needs and budget.

Slh, thank you for your very useful insights.

I am happy with the mt7621 but Xiaomi did something with the casing of the M4A gigabit RJ45 connectors will not click. That is very frustrating.

Although my favorite brand of chips is Qualcomm. For me they have proven to be very stable. I currently have lots of experience with AVM Fritz products. They started rough with terrible firmware and nowadays their firmware is fine for basic users. I ofcourse prefer OpenWrt.

Since your post I came to know the 4040 is OpenWrt supported. That made my day. No Mu-Mimo though but since I read that many MU-Mimo implementations are not yet fully working as intended I have to let that one go.

Thank you.