Mesh Wifi System recommendations

With most people working at home I thought it might be a good thread to discuss what everyone is using at home for wifi.

I’m still renting the fios router and network extender. Costs me about $17 a month and I know I’m just wasting my money.

Cant seem to pull the trigger on a mesh WiFi system - eero and google nest seem like the top 2 options but was hoping to get any personal recommendations.

Set up - modem is in the basement and need to get WiFi all the way up to the 3rd floor office. Currently the router is in the basement and the network extender is on the first floor.

I have had an Orbi for a couple of years now and love it. I have a 3300 square foot two level house made of concrete and I get strong signal everywhere. What sets the orbi apart is it has a separate radio for the satellite to communicate back to the base unit. Therefore it isn’t mixed with all the other network traffic. This is called the backhaul.

Netgear adds a second 5-GHz, 1.7Gbps radio that’s exclusively dedicated to the backhaul, the data being transmitted from the router Orbi unit to the satellite Orbis and back again. Because of this side channel, the main links between the Orbi units and your devices stay strong and fast.

I should also mention I have gigabit internet and consistently get speeds over 700 mbit in most of my house.

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Netgear Orbi. Love the thing. Been thinking about upgrading to netgear orbi nighthawk setup.

I like orbi because the satellites match the base station on bandwidth capability.


Also vote for Orbi. We have the main Orbi with 2 satellites. House is 4,500 sq ft with strong signal everywhere.

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Do you guys know which model orbi you have? I know there are a bunch of options.


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I have the RBK50

Looks like orbi changed their setup. Used to be star where it couldn’t hop from extender to extender to router so that was a nonstarter but looks like they changed that. I tried Google WiFi and Linksys. Linksys for me dropped signal a lot, and Google WiFi was limited in configurability which makes it easy but not if you’re stuck with a provider router.

I use eero since can use it as a bridge. Fairly reliable but not the greatest range. Plugging things like the TV or Xbox directly to the eero makes the connection pretty stable tho. Me being paranoid, but Amazon buying them makes me more hesitant…

Depends on how tech savvy you are, most of the consumer stuff is mediocre at best. I have a enterprise type Access Point from Ubiquiti, thing is so good I don’t need a mesh network and it never goes down or needs a reset. First thing to do would be to move your current setup up a level, that would fix allot of issue. They look great too


Ubiquity is great I’ve installed several for customers. However it’s overkill for most people. How about Meraki while we are at it? :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:


Are all these recommendations compatible with Fios?

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The Ubiquiti is plugged into a MikroTik RouterBOARD, complete overkill. But the stuff just works, never goes down. I login so infrequent to the stuff that I forget how to do it.


+1 Ubiquiti

I am the last person running Airport Extremes at home in Mesh Networking so I can’t recommend that.

Can’t ever assume. I worked with a very nice lady from Atlanta who said to me “our AC is out” which meant “3 of the 5 outdoor 1-2 ton compressors our house has…” suffice to say they had a very nice Ubiquiti setup


I have many long and boring stories about delayed projects and people getting fired over a Meraki setup. Most are not usually THAT bad, but I can usually tell I’m on a Meraki in just a few minutes just by bad behavior (likely due to setup, but if I ever go looking for the APs I know what I’m going to find). I ended up firing a client because they couldn’t get their act together, and I’m pretty sure they closed that facility finally.

Most people living in Apartments or closer homes usually have interference issues moreso than coverage issues. Unless the house is steel frame and plaster lathe. I have one of the last Airport Express (hockey puck) made and I can light up my neighborhood with it if needed.

The Ubiquiti stuff isn’t expensive either. I think I paid $90 for my Long Range AP


I’m a big fan of Wifi Explorer to pulse-check the local airwaves. I will usually change what channel my 2.4 and 5gz radios are running nearly every time I check and Speedtest.

The big question is do you have Fios TV… if you do, you need to have a Fios router in order for the TV guide to work. The way to get around it is to purchase your own router on eBay and then plug a third party router into the Fios router (to essentially have it serve as a modem). The Fios TV boxes will then use that for wifi, but you will use the other router for everything you do. If you don’t, you can connect the router directly to the ONT.

Have you thought about using a Powerline adapter? It might be a decent option

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Might have to play with that, with the corona’s I’ve upgraded to gigabit, no bandwidth issues here.

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Does your FIOS router also provide wifi? When I had FIOS (until 2011) the ONT did not have a wifi radio in it.

This looks pretty recent

In general where coverage is a concern and you are thinking mesh:

  • don’t use the provider’s shitty modem/router/wifi, BYO or disable their wifi
  • choose a wifi router and connect to their modem/router

I have never used the ISPs wifi.

I have an orbi, unbelievable hardware, super crappy software. It just does things on its own sometimes.

I have a set of google WiFi and nest WiFi I am selling. Let me know if you are interested. I got rid of them for the orbi

That’s why the eero works well, can use it as a bridge if you need the crappy FiOS router for tv etc.

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