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Wireless Router Recommendation for Good Range

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September 20, 2004 10:46:54 AM

Archived from groups: alt.internet.wireless (More info?)

I'm new to wireless networking, and require a wireless router with a
decent xmit/rec range. My house is a split-level with a basement (four
levels), and am a bit worried about the performance of a consumer-based
wireless router.

The router would be located at the cable ingress point in our family
room - one level above the basement. The main computer is located in
the basement, and we have another in an upstairs bedroom two levels
above, and my daughter's notebook which is also located in a bedroom two
levels above the family room. Of course, she would like the ability to
"roam about the house" with her notebook. The bedrooms are around 60 to
70 feet from the proposed location of the router. This distance is not
a straight line distance, but rather the actual walking distance from
point A to point B - so to speak.

I really would prefer not to have to implement repeaters, and I can't
implement a wired router with CAT-5 cable given the house's layout and
configuration.

I've heard that SMC and Netgear routers have decent range. Any
suggestions would certainly be appreciated.

Tnx,
Don
Anonymous
a b F Wireless
September 20, 2004 1:52:51 PM

Archived from groups: alt.internet.wireless (More info?)

On Mon, 20 Sep 2004 06:46:54 -0500, Don <w9cw@yahoo.com> wrote:

>I'm new to wireless networking, and require a wireless router with a
>decent xmit/rec range. My house is a split-level with a basement (four
>levels), and am a bit worried about the performance of a consumer-based
>wireless router.

I wouldn't worry much. It's not going to work. Going through 3
floors (reliably) is almost impossible. You can probably get a
signal, but you won't be able to keep it reliably as things move
around. Trying to cover the whole house with one wireless access
point is not worth even trying.

>The router would be located at the cable ingress point in our family
>room - one level above the basement. The main computer is located in
>the basement, and we have another in an upstairs bedroom two levels
>above, and my daughter's notebook which is also located in a bedroom two
>levels above the family room. Of course, she would like the ability to
>"roam about the house" with her notebook. The bedrooms are around 60 to
>70 feet from the proposed location of the router. This distance is not
>a straight line distance, but rather the actual walking distance from
>point A to point B - so to speak.
>
>I really would prefer not to have to implement repeaters, and I can't
>implement a wired router with CAT-5 cable given the house's layout and
>configuration.

Give me a break. A competent wiring installer (preferably BISCI
certified) can run the wires. You really only need CAT5 between
floors. The main wireless router is somewhere near the cable modem.
Strictly speaking, that's not a requirement, but does cut down on the
amount of wiring. From the LAN ports, you run CAT5 up to the next
floor and install a wireless router setup as an access point. You
want a wireless router for this rather than an access point because
you'll need the ethernet switch ports to continue the wiring. From
the LAN switched ports on this box, run the next CAT5 line up through
the floor to the next level. Repeat the wiring to the top floor.

Try to do all this in the middle of the house to reduce the RF path
length. If you have aluminium foil backed insulation in the interior
walls, you're about to have a big coverage problem. Nothing goes
through that. You may also have it in the floors, which is another
reason not to bother trying to do it with one radio.

If running CAT5 is deemed impossible, you'll find that you can use
junk telco station wire (two pairs) for about 50ft without much
trouble. There are also mechanisms for sharing the cable TV coax
cable with ethernet.
http://www.multilet.com/us/baseband/index.htm

>I've heard that SMC and Netgear routers have decent range. Any
>suggestions would certainly be appreciated.

The Seneo based 200mw routers and client radios appear to be the best
of the breed.
http://www.seattlewireless.net/index.cgi/SenaoCard


--
Jeff Liebermann jeffl@comix.santa-cruz.ca.us
150 Felker St #D http://www.LearnByDestroying.com
Santa Cruz CA 95060 AE6KS 831-336-2558
September 20, 2004 6:37:49 PM

Archived from groups: alt.internet.wireless (More info?)

In article <gu1uk0900ua3vvpuqaeqhcqde0vkv0l8dh@4ax.com>,
jeffl@comix.santa-cruz.ca.us says...
> >I really would prefer not to have to implement repeaters, and I can't
> >implement a wired router with CAT-5 cable given the house's layout and
> >configuration.
>
> Give me a break. A competent wiring installer (preferably BISCI
> certified) can run the wires. You really only need CAT5 between
> floors. The main wireless router is somewhere near the cable modem.
> Strictly speaking, that's not a requirement, but does cut down on the
> amount of wiring. From the LAN ports, you run CAT5 up to the next
> floor and install a wireless router setup as an access point. You
> want a wireless router for this rather than an access point because
> you'll need the ethernet switch ports to continue the wiring. From
> the LAN switched ports on this box, run the next CAT5 line up through
> the floor to the next level. Repeat the wiring to the top floor.
>
> Try to do all this in the middle of the house to reduce the RF path
> length. If you have aluminium foil backed insulation in the interior
> walls, you're about to have a big coverage problem. Nothing goes
> through that. You may also have it in the floors, which is another
> reason not to bother trying to do it with one radio.
>
> If running CAT5 is deemed impossible, you'll find that you can use
> junk telco station wire (two pairs) for about 50ft without much
> trouble. There are also mechanisms for sharing the cable TV coax
> cable with ethernet.
> http://www.multilet.com/us/baseband/index.htm
>

Running CAT5 is out of the question, as every wall and ceiling
structure, from basement to the top floor is fully finished with no
access points to run the cable. Yes, one could drill through the upper
floors and possibly fish a line down the walls, but this also would be
very dicey. No foil faced insulation is present - only Kraft paper
facing.

In terms of straight-line distance from the cable modem and wireless
router which will be located next to each other at the cable ingress
point in our family room to: 1). the two PC's central location (one a
desktop, and the other a notebook) - approximately 30 to 40 feet maximum
(through one floor and two walls); and 2). the basement desktop PC
(almost line-of-sight from the cable ingress point) - approximately 40
feet.

Since the house is a split-level with a basement, structurally it is
essentially two structures - the lower section containing the living
room, dining, room, and kitchen over the basement with a gable roof and
the section with the garage, family room, and bedrooms over a slab with
a hip roof. Although four separate levels, the family room behind the
garage on the slab is only four feet or so below the main level over the
basement. So, it is not a three-story house above a basement per se.
Only one ceiling (approx. 11 feet high) exists between the family room
to the bedrooms in the top story.

I assure you if running CAT5 was aesthetically and mechanically doable,
I would have already installed it myself. You would have to see the
house configuration to appreciate my dilemma.

Tnx for all of everyone's inputs.

Don
Related resources
Anonymous
a b F Wireless
September 20, 2004 7:31:42 PM

Archived from groups: alt.internet.wireless (More info?)

"Don" <w9cw@yahoo.com> wrote in message
news:MPG.1bb8ed8c30b0f1cf989681@news.intergate.com...
> In article <gu1uk0900ua3vvpuqaeqhcqde0vkv0l8dh@4ax.com>,
> jeffl@comix.santa-cruz.ca.us says...
>> >I really would prefer not to have to implement repeaters, and I can't
>> >implement a wired router with CAT-5 cable given the house's layout and
>> >configuration.
>>
>> Give me a break. A competent wiring installer (preferably BISCI
>> certified) can run the wires. You really only need CAT5 between
>> floors. The main wireless router is somewhere near the cable modem.
>> Strictly speaking, that's not a requirement, but does cut down on the
>> amount of wiring. From the LAN ports, you run CAT5 up to the next
>> floor and install a wireless router setup as an access point. You
>> want a wireless router for this rather than an access point because
>> you'll need the ethernet switch ports to continue the wiring. From
>> the LAN switched ports on this box, run the next CAT5 line up through
>> the floor to the next level. Repeat the wiring to the top floor.
>>
>> Try to do all this in the middle of the house to reduce the RF path
>> length. If you have aluminium foil backed insulation in the interior
>> walls, you're about to have a big coverage problem. Nothing goes
>> through that. You may also have it in the floors, which is another
>> reason not to bother trying to do it with one radio.
>>
>> If running CAT5 is deemed impossible, you'll find that you can use
>> junk telco station wire (two pairs) for about 50ft without much
>> trouble. There are also mechanisms for sharing the cable TV coax
>> cable with ethernet.
>> http://www.multilet.com/us/baseband/index.htm
>>
>
> Running CAT5 is out of the question, as every wall and ceiling
> structure, from basement to the top floor is fully finished with no
> access points to run the cable. Yes, one could drill through the upper
> floors and possibly fish a line down the walls, but this also would be
> very dicey. No foil faced insulation is present - only Kraft paper
> facing.
>
> In terms of straight-line distance from the cable modem and wireless
> router which will be located next to each other at the cable ingress
> point in our family room to: 1). the two PC's central location (one a
> desktop, and the other a notebook) - approximately 30 to 40 feet maximum
> (through one floor and two walls); and 2). the basement desktop PC
> (almost line-of-sight from the cable ingress point) - approximately 40
> feet.
>
> Since the house is a split-level with a basement, structurally it is
> essentially two structures - the lower section containing the living
> room, dining, room, and kitchen over the basement with a gable roof and
> the section with the garage, family room, and bedrooms over a slab with
> a hip roof. Although four separate levels, the family room behind the
> garage on the slab is only four feet or so below the main level over the
> basement. So, it is not a three-story house above a basement per se.
> Only one ceiling (approx. 11 feet high) exists between the family room
> to the bedrooms in the top story.
>
> I assure you if running CAT5 was aesthetically and mechanically doable,
> I would have already installed it myself. You would have to see the
> house configuration to appreciate my dilemma.
>
> Tnx for all of everyone's inputs.
>
> Don

You might consider ehternet over power adapters and then run a wireless AP
on every floor or every other floor.

Also, competent people can run wiring floor to floor. typically they cut a
hole in the wall, above the baseboard, on the room above, and fish down the
wire to a similar hole in the wall in the room below. As another poster
said, this is done all the time. You just need someone who knows what he is
doing.

--
Bob Alston

bobalston9 AT aol DOT com


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September 20, 2004 7:32:03 PM

Archived from groups: alt.internet.wireless (More info?)

"Don" <w9cw@yahoo.com> wrote in message
news:MPG.1bb87f10e890f08e989680@news.intergate.com...
> I'm new to wireless networking, and require a wireless router with a
> decent xmit/rec range. My house is a split-level with a basement (four
> levels), and am a bit worried about the performance of a consumer-based
> wireless router.
>
> The router would be located at the cable ingress point in our family
> room - one level above the basement. The main computer is located in
> the basement, and we have another in an upstairs bedroom two levels
> above, and my daughter's notebook which is also located in a bedroom two
> levels above the family room. Of course, she would like the ability to
> "roam about the house" with her notebook. The bedrooms are around 60 to
> 70 feet from the proposed location of the router. This distance is not
> a straight line distance, but rather the actual walking distance from
> point A to point B - so to speak.
>
> I really would prefer not to have to implement repeaters, and I can't
> implement a wired router with CAT-5 cable given the house's layout and
> configuration.
>
> I've heard that SMC and Netgear routers have decent range. Any
> suggestions would certainly be appreciated.
>

I have two wireless networks in my house - a cable based (Comcast) and a DSL
based (Qwest) wired/wireless networks. We live in a 3 level house with all
the wired computers in the basement (and hence all the wireless routers in
the based). The DSL network is served by a Netgear MR 314 (802.11b)
wireless router; the cable-based network is served by a D-Link DI 624
(Airplus extreme G, 802.11b/802.11g) wireless router. The D-Link is
relatively new; the Netgear is about a year old. The long and short of it
is that the range of the D-Link is significantly farther than the range of
the Netgear. We have four laptops in different parts of the house (and for
different users). We seem to have one Netgear dead-zone (a significant
one), while we've found several areas of the house that are low signal for
the D-Link. However, the weakest D-Link signal is still at least two bars
stronger (2 bars) than the dead Netgear zone (where making a wireless
connection to the Netgear router is impossible).

I have nowhere else to locate the wireless routers, and no network drops on
any upper level at which I could install a wireless access point to serve as
a bridge. (And no inexpensive way to get CAT-5 from basement to upper
levels). I've just ordered another DI-624 and will replace the Netgear with
it. I'm hoping the signal will be strong enough to avoid a repeater, but if
I need one, DLink makes one that works specifically with the DI-624.

So, I wouldn't vote for Netgear at this point. Besides, from what I read in
many places, their service isn't particularly good.
Anonymous
a b F Wireless
September 21, 2004 12:04:16 AM

Archived from groups: alt.internet.wireless (More info?)

I just set up a wireless network using a Linksys WRT54G Router and the
optional high gain 7dBi antennas (model# HGA7T). The antennas did make a
noticeable difference in signal strength over distance. You might also do a
bit of Google sleuthing on the Linksys WSB24 Signal Booster (discontinued,
but still available). It was supposedly only compatible with Linksys's
802.11b routers, but there have been reports of it working with their
802.11g routers as well.

Having said that, you might even consider a high gain external antenna
(>7dBi) mounted outside your dwelling...but I'd be damn sure to secure the
network.

From what Ive read so far, there are quite a few savvy network
administrators/experts in this group that might provide details and options
with more specificity. fwiw...

--
Robert J. Salvi, Ambiance Acoustics
http://www.ambianceacoustics.com
San Diego, CA USA
(858) 485-7514

"Don" <w9cw@yahoo.com> wrote in message
news:MPG.1bb87f10e890f08e989680@news.intergate.com...
> I'm new to wireless networking, and require a wireless router with a
> decent xmit/rec range. My house is a split-level with a basement (four
> levels), and am a bit worried about the performance of a consumer-based
> wireless router.
>
> The router would be located at the cable ingress point in our family
> room - one level above the basement. The main computer is located in
> the basement, and we have another in an upstairs bedroom two levels
> above, and my daughter's notebook which is also located in a bedroom two
> levels above the family room. Of course, she would like the ability to
> "roam about the house" with her notebook. The bedrooms are around 60 to
> 70 feet from the proposed location of the router. This distance is not
> a straight line distance, but rather the actual walking distance from
> point A to point B - so to speak.
>
> I really would prefer not to have to implement repeaters, and I can't
> implement a wired router with CAT-5 cable given the house's layout and
> configuration.
>
> I've heard that SMC and Netgear routers have decent range. Any
> suggestions would certainly be appreciated.
>
> Tnx,
> Don
September 21, 2004 12:22:28 AM

Archived from groups: alt.internet.wireless (More info?)

In article <G6H3d.286341$Lj.39204@fed1read03>, bobalston9NOSPAM@aol.com
says...
> You might consider ehternet over power adapters and then run a wireless AP
> on every floor or every other floor.
>
> Also, competent people can run wiring floor to floor. typically they cut a
> hole in the wall, above the baseboard, on the room above, and fish down the
> wire to a similar hole in the wall in the room below. As another poster
> said, this is done all the time. You just need someone who knows what he is
> doing.
>
> --
> Bob Alston
>
>

Bob,

I've certainly thought about both possibilities, but the latter is a
tough one. One can cut an access hole above the baseboard in an
upstairs wall, but getting down into the wall below is not possible due
to the 2 x 6 upper or lower plate that the wall structure is based upon.
No holes exist in the and one would have to open up a rather large
access hole to drill into the base plate of the 2 x 6 to gain access to
the wall in the room below. More importantly, the rooms upstairs which
require access are not above the wall in the family room which contains
the cable ingress. Both rooms are on the opposite side of the house.

It certainly is true that one "can" gain access through walls and floors
to run CAT5 cable generally anywhere, but at what cost in money and
time?? We have just recently painted and redecorated most rooms, and
the last thing I want to do is start replacing drywall again!

Although I have never been blessed with broadband internet access, the
only reason I'm implementing this is for my daughter who is a Junior at
the University of Illinois. She's staying home this year and commuting,
but requires broadband to take several U of I internet-based classes,
etc. Otherwise, I for the little I use the internet, I would be
"reasonably" happy with my current dial-up.

Nevertheless, I am truly appreciative of everyone's input. I've been in
electronics over 40 years, and in ham radio for over 45 years, so I have
extensive "do it yourself" knowledge in RF and digital electronics, and
antenna design.

Tnx,
Don
Urbana, IL
Anonymous
a b F Wireless
September 21, 2004 1:04:56 AM

Archived from groups: alt.internet.wireless (More info?)

"Don" <w9cw@yahoo.com> wrote in message
news:MPG.1bb93e39a9133d0989682@news.intergate.com...
> In article <G6H3d.286341$Lj.39204@fed1read03>, bobalston9NOSPAM@aol.com
> says...
>> You might consider ehternet over power adapters and then run a wireless
>> AP
>> on every floor or every other floor.
>>
>> Also, competent people can run wiring floor to floor. typically they cut
>> a
>> hole in the wall, above the baseboard, on the room above, and fish down
>> the
>> wire to a similar hole in the wall in the room below. As another poster
>> said, this is done all the time. You just need someone who knows what he
>> is
>> doing.
>>
>> --
>> Bob Alston
>>
>>
>
> Bob,
>
> I've certainly thought about both possibilities, but the latter is a
> tough one. One can cut an access hole above the baseboard in an
> upstairs wall, but getting down into the wall below is not possible due
> to the 2 x 6 upper or lower plate that the wall structure is based upon.
> No holes exist in the and one would have to open up a rather large
> access hole to drill into the base plate of the 2 x 6 to gain access to
> the wall in the room below. More importantly, the rooms upstairs which
> require access are not above the wall in the family room which contains
> the cable ingress. Both rooms are on the opposite side of the house.
>
> It certainly is true that one "can" gain access through walls and floors
> to run CAT5 cable generally anywhere, but at what cost in money and
> time?? We have just recently painted and redecorated most rooms, and
> the last thing I want to do is start replacing drywall again!
>
> Although I have never been blessed with broadband internet access, the
> only reason I'm implementing this is for my daughter who is a Junior at
> the University of Illinois. She's staying home this year and commuting,
> but requires broadband to take several U of I internet-based classes,
> etc. Otherwise, I for the little I use the internet, I would be
> "reasonably" happy with my current dial-up.
>
> Nevertheless, I am truly appreciative of everyone's input. I've been in
> electronics over 40 years, and in ham radio for over 45 years, so I have
> extensive "do it yourself" knowledge in RF and digital electronics, and
> antenna design.
>
> Tnx,
> Don
> Urbana, IL

So, how about ethernet run over power???

--
Bob Alston

bobalston9 AT aol DOT com


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