Comparing Some WAPs for purchase, recommendation?

iroc409

[H]ard|Gawd
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Jun 17, 2006
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I'm looking at getting a new WAP for my home network. We're renting a house for the moment, it's about 1500 sq ft I think and it's a split-level. Has a fairly big yard, decent size garage with a boat parking area that I have a project I'm working on.

My previous WAP is an Engenius ECB350. After a shaky start and setting it up with regular reboots, it was totally solid for a few years. We had it in a 2800 sq ft house and it still gave good signal from the second floor across the house down in the walk-out basement.

I have a UAP-AC-Lite, but it's being a pain in the rear. My whole network is being that way at the moment, so I really just want a single stand-alone access point that will do the job. I'm currently comparing these:

-Linksys LAPAC1750 ($200)
-TP-Link AC1750 EAP245 ($90)
-TP-Link AC1900 EAP330 ($200)
-Engenius ECB1750 ($185)

I've had good luck with the Engenius, but a lot of people don't like them. The Linksys seems to get good reviews on range. TP-Link seems to work well, and the new EAP245 looks interesting for the price, but I'm not sure if the features of the EAP330 would be worth twice the costs.

Thoughts? Other ideas? Just stick with Ubiquiti because that's what everybody uses without question?

ETA: We currently only have a few devices. 3 phones, a couple of laptops and tablets. May add some IoT stuff in the future, but not an over-stressed network. Need 2-3 SSID for internal/guest connections. Currently using an ERL for the router, but will probably convert my old Sophos UTM box into a vanilla *BSD box for a router in the future.
 

Cmustang87

Supreme [H]ardness
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All of the choices you have on this list are inferior to the AC-Lite by Ubiquiti.

I would definitely see about getting that resolved.
 

iroc409

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Well, I'll try and get it fixed. My ERL is acting very strangely with the rule sets, so I think I am going to have to just reset it to defaults and start over. DNS is acting very sporadic and it's not allowing things through that should be allowed in the firewall as I'm running a very loose set of rules right now. At least it's consistently giving me strange headaches, through Windows, Fedora, Debian, Raspbian, and FreeBSD. If I can get that fixed, maybe getting the controller running again will be OK.

I had a Pi-Hole running briefly in a VM, but dropped it because the VM was unable to get any updates whatsoever, so it was doing nothing.
 

iroc409

[H]ard|Gawd
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Ugh... well it took a couple hours' work, but it looks like I've got everything working with the UAP. I built a new Unifi controller on a rPi3 and now it is working, and I think I have the ERL sorted. I'm actually somewhat entertaining the idea of Unifi switches, as I have some frustrations with my old Dell and I need to replace an unmanaged small HP with a managed (something). I guess I'll let it run for a bit and see how it goes. I was having issue with a guest wireless, but I don't really need that at the moment.
 

Cmustang87

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Glad you got some things sorted. I'm curious to what issues you were having though? Buggy software, or was it general configuration problems?
 

epimetheus

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I've got a UAP-AC-Pro and just picked up a US-8-60W switch for my structured media center rewire. So far the US-8 has been great, and eliminates the need for the power injector for the UAP. The US-8-60W is also managed by the Unifi Controller, so easy admin and updates.
 

Zangmonkey

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I recently bought the plume system on recommendation from ArsTechnica and I am thoroughly impressed.

Now, if you're the type who needs to constantly tweak your configs it may not be for you but I found the setup dead simple, the coverage excellent.
 

iroc409

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Glad you got some things sorted. I'm curious to what issues you were having though? Buggy software, or was it general configuration problems?

Configuration issues, but lots of them that just kind of collided to get to the point of wanting to starting over.

I had issues with Proxmox, where the original controller was (in Debian), updating the controller, major headaches with the Dell switch I have (older, and considering changing it out), and the xfinity gateway.

The biggest issue was actually the gateway. I set it up for "high security" because it was all I was using for several months during our relocation until now. Supposedly I guess it has some IPS features. Running a traceroute, the xfinity gateway was blocking ping, traceroute, whois, etc. I never had a single issue with it for months, but never needed those features and it was giving me all kinds of problems. I was building the UBNT network behind the gateway until I could get the wireless running to meet the WAF.

The UAP seems to be working fine now, though it took a couple adoptions and a restart to get it to behave. It gives slower speed tests than the xfinity gateway, but browsing the web on my tablet seems more resposibe.

I recently bought the plume system on recommendation from ArsTechnica and I am thoroughly impressed.

Now, if you're the type who needs to constantly tweak your configs it may not be for you but I found the setup dead simple, the coverage excellent.

I looked at Plume, and it looks pretty interesting and is rated pretty well. Plume, Orbi, Eeero, etc all look interesting for someone who wants to set up a full mesh-like network all in one shot.
 

thrash408

Limp Gawd
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I'm a fan of the unifi line of products so far. I have 3 side business clients and my home using the 24 port POE switch, unifi aps, and at my house i'm running the gateway and ip cameras on top of that. So far no issues from what i can tell (crosses fingers)
 

Biznatch

2[H]4U
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AP, WAP is web application proxy. Any reason you aren't looking at Asus or microtik or event ubiquiti (I'm not a fan at all, but others have had luck)?
 

Libertad

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Dec 30, 2010
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I'm also a big fan of the Ubiquiti line of products, have both the old Unifi-LR and the newer Unifi-AC-LR, works great, never had an issue with throughput.
 

iroc409

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Well, everything seems to be running pretty stable. Small issue with my tablet wanting to keep bouncing over to the N channel (or that's what the controller says), but it's fast and responsive so no big deal. Ordered another AP to put one in the garage. Having issues with my Dell switch, it's not playing nicely with an additional VLAN for guest--when I put the AP on that switch port, the controller can't find it. I need to figure out how to route the management interface to my internal VLAN, because right now I have to switch cables to get into the switch's interface which is a total pain in the rear. I was thinking of upgrading the switch to a Unifi, but really don't want to spend $300 on it right now.
 

Langly

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I'm loving my AC-Lite. Ubiquiti has had some minor issues over the years they fix in code but for my home their equipment is fantastic

I'm replacing my 3550-T 1gb switch and my 1841 router as well. I love doing my cisco CLI stuff, but I just don't need it anymore for things I do at home
 

iroc409

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I'm loving my AC-Lite. Ubiquiti has had some minor issues over the years they fix in code but for my home their equipment is fantastic

I'm replacing my 3550-T 1gb switch and my 1841 router as well. I love doing my cisco CLI stuff, but I just don't need it anymore for things I do at home

Are you going with all Unifi, switches and USG?
 

goodcooper

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Well, everything seems to be running pretty stable. Small issue with my tablet wanting to keep bouncing over to the N channel (or that's what the controller says), but it's fast and responsive so no big deal. Ordered another AP to put one in the garage. Having issues with my Dell switch, it's not playing nicely with an additional VLAN for guest--when I put the AP on that switch port, the controller can't find it. I need to figure out how to route the management interface to my internal VLAN, because right now I have to switch cables to get into the switch's interface which is a total pain in the rear. I was thinking of upgrading the switch to a Unifi, but really don't want to spend $300 on it right now.
buying a new switch isn't going to help you here... it sounds like you need to have a better idea of vlans and port trunking
 

iroc409

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buying a new switch isn't going to help you here... it sounds like you need to have a better idea of vlans and port trunking

Yeah, or I need to understand better how Unifi interacts with them. Mostly the upgrade to the Unifi was for easier management through the controller, but that's a ridiculous price to pay for the lone feature it grants me.

With the mantra of "never use VLAN 1" I've had some issues. Dell only allows management from untagged pakcets on VLAN 1. You can't assign VLAN 1 to a port unless it's the default PVID of the port (that I can tell so far). So, I can't add it to my trunk port to route unless it's default, which I guess is a bad idea, and I can't assign it to the other ports on the switch but make them untagged packets of my internal VLAN (12)--that I know of. For now, I reserve port 16 as an untagged VLAN 1 port, and to do any switch management I have to connect to that port directly and manually assign network settings to the machine to get in. I need to route that port in some way so I can just get into it, or go against practice and use VLAN 1 for my internal network. I've thought about using eth2 on the ERL into the "management" port and route it from the internal VLAN as a workaround, but that seems like a hack job.

I have had this Dell switch for a couple years, and I've been running different VLANs on it with no problem (and the trunk port). I have had some issues running multiple VLANs on a single port, which is probably the second breakdown that is causing the problems with the UAP. It would be a lot easier to work through the issue if I could manage it from my internal VLAN.
 

iroc409

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UAP don't do vlans differently than any other device

I didn't think so, but something is not working on the switch if I put the UAP on that port. I know I used to have the guest VLAN default on that port, but I was certain I changed it last time I was in there so the UAP should be on the internal VLAN. It's just a hassle to get back into the switch config so I haven't done it yet.
 
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