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  • Feb 28th, 2021 8:19 pm
[OP]
Sr. Member
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Jul 21, 2014
776 posts
112 upvotes
Canada

Replacing WiFi Router

Currently using this as router for about a year in our condo of approx 1100 sq feet: https://www.tp-link.com/ca/home-network ... rcher-c20/

The signal strength is all over the map and that’s with just being in the next room. Checked with internet provider & after some diagnostic tests it was not deemed an issue at their end.

Want to upgrade but not sure what to get. Currently internet is cable with an avg strength of around 75 mb/s, which is higher than our internet pkg of 60 mb/s.

Usually we have 1-2 laptops working during the day, 2 iPhones.

Any suggestions on what to get?
19 replies
Deal Addict
Sep 10, 2004
2780 posts
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Toronto
If requiring a simple single router setup, you can take a look at the popular ASUS brand routers supported by Asuswrt-Merlin when they are on sale.
Since you mentioned iPhones, be mindful if you intend to use AirPrint printers via the router's WiFi. Noticed some routers have terrible support for that.

If you're technically inclined and familiar with OpenWrt firmware,
At the time of this post, Amazon has the Netgear R6850 on sale for $99.00
I do not recommend nor use any Netgear's stock firmware.
[OP]
Sr. Member
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Jul 21, 2014
776 posts
112 upvotes
Canada
Warlock wrote: If requiring a simple single router setup, you can take a look at the popular ASUS brand routers supported by Asuswrt-Merlin when they are on sale.
Since you mentioned iPhones, be mindful if you intend to use AirPrint printers via the router's WiFi. Noticed some routers have terrible support for that.

If you're technically inclined and familiar with OpenWrt firmware,
At the time of this post, Amazon has the Netgear R6850 on sale for $99.00
Funny you mentioned Asus because I was looking at this one:
https://www.staples.ca/products/2973119 ... al-control
Deal Addict
Sep 10, 2004
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That model is basically a five years old design, no idea as to how long it will be before EOL.
Deal Addict
Sep 10, 2004
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That model is listed as not in stock.
If you are not technically inclined and do not intend to use third party firmware, suggest you stay away from Netgear.
Their hardware is decent but firmware development team is seriously lacking/underfunded.
Hence my recommendation of ASUS for simple setups.
Sr. Member
Apr 18, 2004
977 posts
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I tried 4 routers 3months ago, tplink a9 ,asus RT-AC1200 V2 ,netgear r6850,and tplink c80, the only c80 has better signal than the carrytel cgn3 modem.
Never again! HTC , Wind Mobile , Air China
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Oct 16, 2008
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AchtungB4by wrote: Currently using this as router for about a year in our condo of approx 1100 sq feet: https://www.tp-link.com/ca/home-network ... rcher-c20/

The signal strength is all over the map and that’s with just being in the next room. Checked with internet provider & after some diagnostic tests it was not deemed an issue at their end.

Want to upgrade but not sure what to get. Currently internet is cable with an avg strength of around 75 mb/s, which is higher than our internet pkg of 60 mb/s.

Usually we have 1-2 laptops working during the day, 2 iPhones.

Any suggestions on what to get?
This - https://www.staples.ca/products/2572101 ... bit-router
Penalty Box
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Oct 13, 2008
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In my opinion ... Huawei AX3 Pro Quad Core WiFi 6 ... for the price ... for the stability ... for the range ... for the ease of connectivity ... for the speed

Our house was built in 2006 ... 1800 sq ft ... detached 2-story ... with CAT5e prewired to:

- 1 in the living room - hooked up to the Huawei AX3 PRO WiFi 6+ Router
- 1 unused in master bedroom
- 2 in a second bedroom - one is hooked up to the Huawei AX3 PRO WiFi 6+ Router (which my desktop dedicated to downloading is hooked up to) ; one is hooked up to my work laptop
- 1 unused in master bathroom (don't know why)
- 1 unused in garage (don't know why)

Totally surprised that there was just a coax in the third bedroom. No idea why the builder did that.

I have my Bell Home Hub 3000 (Bell Fiber 1.5Gbps) in the basement beside the electrical panel (previously the Rogers CODA modem was in the same spot ... as you can see in the photo that the COAX is in the back corner all unused now).

I put in an 8-Port D-Link Gigabit Switch plugged into one of the 4 ports on the back of the Bell modem.

I subsequently ran three other CAT7 cables from the modem area to the living room by the TV area (going into a 5-Port Asus Gigabit Switch which connects to my two unlocked Android Boxes and my Denon receiver) and two other spots in the basement (future proofing for possible new entertainment room and relocation of home office space).

There was one other CAT6 that was run from the modem area to the mainfloor laundry room for the Rogers Smart Home Monitoring Netgear Router (that was put in by the Rogers Technician).

Internet - 1.jpg
Internet - 2.jpg

The two Huawei AX3 PRO WiFi 6+ Routers:
- located in the living room at the back of the house ... signal can be reached at the plaza behind my backyard and 4 houses up on either side
- located in a bedroom at the front of the house ... signal can be reached in my neighbour's backyard across the street

Internet - 3.jpg
Internet - 4.jpg

Wireless Connections:
- Living Room (Huawei AX3 PRO WiFi 6+ Router) --> Hisense TV ; Nest Protect in Living Room ; Nest Protect in Basement (underneath the living room) ; Personal Laptop ; Echo Show 5
- 2nd Floor Bedroom (Huawei AX3 PRO WiFi 6+ Router) --> Blink Camera (outside of garage) ; Camera (inside the Garage) ; Nest Protect in 2nd Floor Hallway ; Google Mini (in Master Bathroom) ; Echo Dot in Middle bathroom (on 2nd Floor)
- Basement below foyer (Bell Home Hub 3000 Modem) --> Blink Module ; Ring Doorbell ; Nest Protect on Main Floor Foyer ; Nest Protect in Basement by Furnace ; Nest Thermostat ; Echo Dot in Basement Rec Room

- Rogers NetGear Router (outside of Main Floor Laundry Room) --> For all Rogers SHM Devices (2 cameras ; 2 motion sensors ; 5 door/window sensors ; Front Door Lock ; Smart Bulb) ; Chamberlain MyQ Module plugged into the back of Router

Our two Huawei phones, Acer tablet and my iShit 7 (work phone) automatically connects to whichever signal that is stronger

I love what the naysayers are always saying about the negativity of Huawei ... I totally disagree.

I love the speed ... the stability ... the range (especially)!

Yes ... those naysayers will always talk about Huawei due to their so-called "spyware" and security issues.

My work laptop is plugged into the router directly ... and my work phone is connected to its WiFi ... I have yet to receive any notification from our IT department regarding breaches ...

Besides ... for home use ... what is there to steal? Your naked pics that mom and pops took of you when you were an infant?

Price is right ... does the job for me ... that is it. Done deal.

All I can say is to each his own. My buddy who is a gamer stayed over during the holidays ... he brought his laptop over to test my connections while gaming ... he was surprised on how stable and fast it was (compared to his Asus Wireless AX5700 Dual-Band Wi-Fi 6 Gaming Router (RT-AX86U) ... he has Rogers Gigabit versus me having the Bell Fiber 1.5Gbps.
16'x11' Living Room 11' Cathedral Ceiling. Hisense 65Q8G. Denon AVR-S740H 7.2 setup. Jamo Classic 10 280W Towers - FR+FL; Polk S35 - Center; Klipsch R51M - RR+RL; Klipsch R14M - Dolby FHR+FHL; Polk HTS10 Subwoofer x2. Unlocked Android Boxes from Taiwan x2
Deal Addict
Sep 10, 2004
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AchtungB4by wrote: Just picked that one up yesterday and installed it...
Note that there are a number of firmware updates for the ASUS RT-AC66U B1.
Whether you're using the ASUS factory firmware or Asuswrt-Merlin firmware,
Update if required/recommended.
[OP]
Sr. Member
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Jul 21, 2014
776 posts
112 upvotes
Canada
Been using the new router since Sat. While I have not had any issues using my iPhone 11, my wife's iPhone 8 Plus seems to have intermittent issues where she has to turn off wifi and go on cell network to use such apps as Instagram or Facebook.

Is it possible to have an issue with one phone and not another re: wifi?
[OP]
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Jul 21, 2014
776 posts
112 upvotes
Canada
So a quick update - for the past week our cable modem would reboot itself for no reason multiple times per day & issue was increasingly worse.

Contacted internet provider, TekSavvy, who provided us a modem/wifi router combo: Your text to link here...

We are to try it for 2 weeks to see if that corrects the issue. In the meantime I am returning the previously purchased Asus wifi router, since I only have until next week to return for full refund.

If it solves the issue Teksavvy want me to purchase for $13/mos for a year, otherwise I have to find my own cable modem and wifi router.

Other than not being able to have a smartphone app to track who/what is on the wireless network, does anyone know if these combo units are any good?
Deal Addict
Sep 10, 2004
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Toronto
AchtungB4by wrote: Other than not being able to have a smartphone app to track who/what is on the wireless network, does anyone know if these combo units are any good?
If you're asking whether they are better than having a separate modem and separate router, then No.

With that said,
If that SR808ac serves your purpose and network security is of no concern to you, then enjoy.
[OP]
Sr. Member
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Jul 21, 2014
776 posts
112 upvotes
Canada
Warlock wrote: If you're asking whether they are better than having a separate modem and separate router, then No.

With that said,
If that SR808ac serves your purpose and network security is of no concern to you, then enjoy.
Why is it not better? What makes separate units superior?
Deal Addict
Sep 10, 2004
2780 posts
791 upvotes
Toronto
That SR808ac is functioning as a modem, router, switch and WiFi.
Having a separate decent router will offload the routing, switching and WiFi functions from the SR808ac; thus freeing up SR808ac's processor for only modem duties.
A decent router also should have better security updates and features than a typical gateway device provided by an ISP.

Hence my preference of using routers with OpenWrt, when dealing with simple network device setup.
[OP]
Sr. Member
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Jul 21, 2014
776 posts
112 upvotes
Canada
So we used the SR808ac tester for a week and the speed and strength was flawless.

I switched back last Sunday to my original setup: TPLink Archer C20 wifi router combined with the Hitron CODA-45 modem. I have noticed the strength icon on both the laptop and iPhone seem to be showing full then will drop back. Lately when working from home or on Zoom it says my internet connection is unstable at intermittent times throughout the day.

What is the issue here...? Is the wifi router on it's last legs? We are in a condo so there really shouldn't be an issue.

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