The networks wireless mesh or meshed increasingly sound more like solution to problems of wireless coverage in homes where we do not want any dark area or cuts when we move from one room to another.
In the consumer market there are already many solutions that we can buy at prices that, although still high, increasingly convince more users who want to end their problems with WiFi connectivity in a simple, fast and above all efficient way.
The best WiFi Mesh systems for home
As we have already seen, the simplest and most effective way to improve the coverage of the Wi-Fi home signal is mesh or meshed systems. They are also more intuitive systems, managed by an application and with numerous aids such as parental controls.
They are also systems with a very attractive design and that we can expand at any time once the investment of the router and a couple of access points. This modularity plays in their favor even though the elements of the network are more expensive than the classic input routers and their possibilities are smaller, starting with the number of Ethernet ports in many of the models that we currently find in the market.
If you have decided to take the step and forget the problems of WiFi connectivity at home, we leave you with our selection of the best models of mesh wireless networks for consumption.
Amplifi de Ubiquiti
In meshed WiFi or mesh systems, the software section is really the one that can make a difference when the hardware part is similar. This is exactly what happens to Ubiquiti’s Amplifi, a reference brand that specializes in mesh systems, both consumer and professional.
The Ubiquiti Amplifi is composed of a router and two access points. In both cases, the design is very different from that seen in network systems even within the “different” mesh systems. The router is very compact, cube-shaped, and with a touch screen that gives us different information about our network. The two access points (MeshPoint) that are included in this basic kit are connected directly to the socket and have an adjustable magnetic antenna and LED that indicate visually where we have the best coverage to place them.
The Amplifi router is a dual band model (1750 Mbps) with an internal antenna system (3), compatible with 802.11ac, MU-MIMO networks and managed by an app of the most complete in the sector and with services such as Guest network that we can configure for only a certain time or users. Despite its small size, the router offers four Gigabit Ethernet ports and one USB.
TP-Link Deco M5
The most affordable and recommended WiFi mesh solution on the market today is the Deco M5 from TP-Link. The pack of three nodes, all of them very careful and compact design.
With a design that includes four antennas in the interior and double band AC1300 system, it is not the best performance on the market but compensates with its price and include three units to better cover the rooms. It is a logical choice if we want to prioritize more coverage over speed.
The TP-Link Deco M5 is an AC1300 system (802.11ac / a / b / g / n and MU-MIMO), which like other mesh equipment, has advanced technology for managing connected devices and choosing the best route in all moment. There is an intuitive smartphone application to configure and manage the network, parental controls and in this case, a Trend-Micro antivirus is also included for three years.
Both the WiFi router and the two satellites have two Gigabit Ethernet ports as well as one USB-C for powering the equipment.
If within WiFi Mesh network systems we look for the closest in performance to a classic router, the Netgear Orbi option is the most appropriate. They are the biggest and most bulky models of all, but in any case they keep the idea of careful design for any stay that we have already indicated is common to the networks of WiFi Mesh networks.
Netgear Orbi comes in kits of two elements, although at any time we can add more satellite units. The input kits range from the basic one with a WiFi router and wall-mounted satellite, to the most complete (more than 350 m2 of total coverage) and that includes two identical elements whose point strong is its elongated interior to place up to 6 antennas. The Orbi system is tri-band 3000 Mbps (1733 + 866 + 400 Mbps), Beamforming and MU-MIMO 4×4.
In connectivity, the Orge Netgear win the competition as they include three Ethernet ports the WiFi router and four the satellite, so in the room where you have placed the second element you can have a cable connection for up to four devices. It is one of the few systems that offers a USB port to the user.
At the level of control and management of the network, the most outstanding thing is that it uses Circle, the parental control application. It is also compatible with Amazon Echo / Alexa and supports the creation of a WiFi guest network.
When looking for a mesh or mesh WiFi network for large houses, if we do not want to have too many satellites, we should look for the equipment that can cover more area with a single element. This is the case of the Linksys Velop solutions, with up to 185 m2 per element. It is one of the recommended options for large houses and open spaces, because with a system of three nodes we can cover more than 500 square meters.
The Velop system is simultaneous triple band AC2200 (867 + 867 + 400 Mbps), MU-MIMO, with standard 802.11ac and a height design (but enough content in total dimensions) to accommodate six internal antennas. Right at the bottom, hidden from view, we have the Gigabit Ethernet ports, which are only two, with automatic WAN / LAN detection.
The Linksys experience in the sector has been transferred to the application both to configure and manage the home network. It has one of the most complete parental control systems, being able to mark up times of use by individual device, as well as of management, with creation of a network for guests, prioritization of devices or alerts with the status of the home WiFi network.
ASUS, one of the references in high-performance routers, has not been left behind in the world of mesh or meshed networks. Your Lyra model stands out because it supports Triple VLAN functionality, so we can use it with our fiber provider.
The ASUS Lyra system is one of the most powerful in the market (tri-band AC2200) and with better coverage due to the use of 7 internal antennas. It is MU-MIMO 2×2 although it only has two Ethernet ports.
From the entrance of ASUS in the world of Wifi Mesh networks, we must also highlight their commitment to take advantage of routers that we already have at home. Its AiMesh system is a solution to generate mesh networks from the company’s routers models that are updated to reuse them in a mesh network. Not all are compatible, they are gradually added, but if you already have an ASUS router it would be good if you look at the list of compatible to save a good euro and continue to maintain all the functions of the router, something we lose in other systems models mesh.
With three years already on the market, Eero’s WiFi mesh network systems have gained a place by appealing to their design and great modularity. Eero equipment supports combining both routers and Beacons, which are your extra access points. Depending on our coverage needs we can choose the simplest pack, with an Eero and a Beacon.
The most recommended kit is the one that includes two beacons plus the router. The router is not the one that gives you more connectivity options, it only has two Ethernet ports (in addition to USB-C for power), but despite its compact size is a triple band model (beacons are only double band) 2×2 MU-MIMO, beamforming and 802.11a / b / g / n / ac.
A different touch of these Eero beacons is that these access points have a light that allows to maintain a corridor or area illuminated with a LED of 10 lumens, which reduces its intensity automatically.
It is not available anywhere in the world, but Google WiFi is one of the most affordable WiFi mesh router models. The central system which would give an extension of about 140 square meters. With a system of three AP (access points), which would come out in a kit for less than 300 dollars, we could have WiFi coverage in more than 400 square meters.
Google WiFi is a simultaneous dual-band AC1200 2×2 system (2.4GHz / 5GHz) compatible with IEEE 802.11a / b / g / n / ac, has a power consumption of 9 W and each router has two Ethernet ports.