In your experience which Tomato routers have the best Wifi range?

Discussion in 'Tomato Firmware' started by schnappi, Apr 18, 2014.

  1. schnappi

    schnappi Networkin' Nut Member

    Unfortunately have a router that must be in a basement.

    I don't know if a top of the line router provides 50% better range than a standard router...or 5% better range.

    Do the ASUS RT-N66U and RT-N16 really provide significantly better 2.4GHz range than say a WRT54GL? Or are these ASUS routers with their 3 antennas over hyped in terms of strong range?

    Would very much like to hear what others experiences have been.
  2. Marcel Tunks

    Marcel Tunks Networkin' Nut Member

    N66U has good range.

    Also keep in mind that for a given channel width and signal to noise ratio, 802.11n (eg. N66U) will be faster than 802.11g (eg. WRT54G).
  3. schnappi

    schnappi Networkin' Nut Member

    Does 802.11n have a range advantage over 802.11g?
    Last edited: Apr 19, 2014
  4. mito

    mito Network Guru Member

    You'll get by far the best of everything with 68U or r7000.
    I'll stick with r7000 because its potencial and because Devs at Tomato are working hard on AC-ARM firm to flash it.
    My r7000 has about 20% more range than my beloved rt-n16 tested at same distance.
  5. schnappi

    schnappi Networkin' Nut Member

    For whats its worth tested a WRT54GL and the range was worse than a stock UVerse NVG589. That being said a WRT54GL only has 802.11g...the NVG589 has 802.11n.

    So I answered my own question. Thanks for the answer though mito.

    I wonder how a RTN66U compares to a RTN68U in terms of 802.11n WiFi...

    Also does Tomato support Ai Radar (basically directionally strengthening a WiFi signal)...or shall we ignore this as a marketing gimmick from Asus?
  6. JoeDirte

    JoeDirte Networkin' Nut Member

    I can't compare my RT-N66U to the 68U as I don't have the latter... However, I will state (the obvious) that 2.4GHz has better range than 5GHz for 802.11n.

    Routers with external antennae are another obvious way to increase range.
  7. s44

    s44 Networkin' Nut Member

    Run ethernet to a wall-mount location at the top of the basement stairs, and use a UniFi AP.

    This worked a lot better for me than trying to brute-force signal through floors and walls... at some point the signal *back* to the router becomes the limiting factor.
  8. quihong

    quihong Networkin' Nut Member

    My general recommendation is not to spend $200 on a router, hoping that it will give you good Wi-Fi coverage. Instead spend the money on two lower end routers and a powerline to ethernet adapter kit.

    Setup your main router in the basement, and another router as an Access Point on a different floor. Use a powerline to ethernet adapter to connect the two routers (or skip the powerline to ethernet adapter if you can run a ethernet cable).

    Two low end routers will give you better Wi-Fi coverage than any one high-end router.
  9. Dr Strangelove

    Dr Strangelove LI Guru Member

    I have a E4200 and E900(2.4GHz only) 15metres apart connect via Ethernet (home environment).
    Configured as access Point + WDS running on 2.4GHz which gives me a 25metre 'bubble' of solid connectivity for Smartphones, wireless audio/TV streaming and etc.
    The E4200 2.4GHz gives(my environment) -60dBm at 15metres (few internal wooden walls) and 50-80Mbits throughput (iPerf to NAS) with 300Mbit connection on a two stream Intel Wireless-AC 7260 in a notebook.

    As others have suggested, I'd recommend Ethernet (cable/Power) and two Wi-Fi AP.
  10. occamsrazor

    occamsrazor Network Guru Member

    My RT-N66U was significantly better than my E3000 for 2.4Ghz wifi range. That said, for reaching areas on the edge of your current range the preferable solution would be to add another (cabled) access point.
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