Home networking/home theater tips for newb - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
Forum Jump: 
 1Likes
  • 1 Post By theproman23
 
Thread Tools
post #1 of 17 Old 04-24-2019, 10:37 PM - Thread Starter
Newbie
 
Join Date: Apr 2019
Posts: 8
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Liked: 0
Home networking/home theater tips for newb

So, I'm a newb when it comes to this stuff but have cobbled together a home network with the little that I do know. We're in a 2,400 sq ft, 3 floor (includes basement) home and have Verizon Fios for internet (along with their router) and the Google WiFi mesh system. Main intention of my network is to be able to work on my laptop anywhere in the house, to stream media (via Raspberry Pi) from a NAS to our living room and a projector I have setup in the basement and to monitor our newborn son through an IP camera in his room for when he's napping/sleeping.

As time passes I'm beginning to realize that I might not have the most ideal setup and today was proof of that. Our Fios router decided to stop providing an internet signal through ethernet and I ended up spending close to 5 hours to get something to work so we can continue monitoring our 4 month old overnight.

My current setup: FIOS modem -> Fios Router -> 2 ethernet runs - 1 for basement home theater and 1 for living room. 1st run goes to a gigabit switch and then to the receiver/raspberry/projector, 2nd run goes to gigabit switch in living room then to receiver/fios stb box/xbox/NAS/Raspberry PI/Google Wifi point (the main one)

We also have one google wifi point in the basement and another in the office on the 2nd floor. Since, I have a google wifi mesh with a different IP Verizon won't stream TV to our phone/tablet since it thinks we're not connected to the verizon router.

What I'm trying to understand is the most ideal way to setup our network so I can have all devices on the same IP and have less issues when my network goes down. I''ve noticed that our internet is slow ever since I switched from a TP Link Archer C9 router to the Google WiFi mesh. With the issue I had today I had to bypass the FIOS router and change things up to be able to get the IP camera to keep functioning overnight. Well anyway now I can't access our NAS nor can I get to netflix on the Verizon STB box since it requires the FIOS router to be functioning. I'm hoping the experts here can guide me along and provide insight as to what I can do to make things more efficient. Ideally I'd love to have ethernet runs all over the house but that's just not going to be practical in our case. Thanks in advance!!!
Krishna Kothamasu is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 17 Old 04-26-2019, 07:23 PM
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2014
Posts: 372
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 213 Post(s)
Liked: 16
Hi there.

I think I have a similar set up, but no Google WiFi mesh.

When our daughter was born I also put in an IP camera... My FiOS WiFi couldn't handle everything I had going on, let alone the range was not great...

I ended up disabling the FiOS WiFi access point and getting 2 Ubiquiti (UniFi) access points. It works really well. When I move around the house, or even go into the yard (outdoor access point), I never lose connectivity. I can stream a movie and move between each AP.

The issue here is that the main Puck is a router. Wireless clients end up getting an IP address from the Google subnet (whatever it uses). FiOS uses 192.168.1.x/24 network. It isn't a good idea to have both the FiOS and Google using the same local IP subnet, since they're both routers, as you can see it creates problems.

Because of how IP subnets work, I would do one of the following:
1. Set the Google Puck to 'Bridged' mode or look at getting a true AP (not a wireless router). Putting the Puck into Bridge mode will not let you use the additional pucks for the mesh (https://support.google.com/wifi/answ..._topic=6246470).

2. Go for an access point. An AP uses your existing network IP router. They generally only have 1 port, which would plug into your FiOS router, or any other network switch. You would only have 1 IP subnet now, instead of 2.

3. Enable the FiOS WiFi for phones/tablets that will be streaming.

------

As for the speed issues, Mesh networks aren't the greatest. Each puck communicates wirelessly with the main puck. So if you don't have a great connection between the pucks, there will be latency there, not to mention the standard latency from wifi in general.

Are you able to move the pucks closer together? If they're on different floors, that would cause more of an issue as the signal now has to pass through structural obstacles.

If it were me (and it was), I'd go for option 2 above.

Here is how I have my set up.
My Fios Modem/Router is in my living room. I have my AVR, HTPC and Apple TV 4K connected to it, in addition to a switch in my basement.
The switch in the basement has my access points plugged into it. The APs run to different parts of my house + yard.


I hope this helps!
cowbodude99 is offline  
post #3 of 17 Old 04-27-2019, 12:34 AM
AVS Forum Special Member
 
Stephen Hopkins's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: Douglasville, GA
Posts: 4,111
Mentioned: 4 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 396 Post(s)
Liked: 176
Could you disable routing on the Verizon router and let it simply work as a modem, allowing Google Wifi act as the router? This will at least eliminate the double-NAT, but I don't know if it would eliminate the Verizon restriction on TV streaming. Otherwise, as mentioned above, enable the Fios WiFi for phones/tablets... you should still be able to access the IP cam if it's set up properly for outside access or is a cloud-based camera. Unfortunately, none of this will help with the situation where the ethernet out from the Verizon modem/router just stops working (except you'd have the Verizon WiFi as a backup.

BenQ TK800 | Silver Ticket 106" 16:9 1.0 Grey | Marantz SR6011 | B&W P6 | B&W CDMC SE | Sonance .5 THX SUR | MCM In-Ceiling Atmos | Ascendant Avalanche 12" in 6 ft^3 @ 18Hz w/ BASH 500w Plate Amp | Sony X800 | NVidia Shield TV Pro | XBox One 500gb | Nintendo Switch | Harmony Smart Control | SmartThings Hub | Google Home | AT&T Fiber 300 | YouTube TV | Netflix | HBO Now | Spotify
Stephen Hopkins is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #4 of 17 Old 04-27-2019, 11:12 AM - Thread Starter
Newbie
 
Join Date: Apr 2019
Posts: 8
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Liked: 0
Quote:
Originally Posted by cowbodude99 View Post
When our daughter was born I also put in an IP camera... My FiOS WiFi couldn't handle everything I had going on, let alone the range was not great...


I ended up disabling the FiOS WiFi access point and getting 2 Ubiquiti (UniFi) access points. It works really well. When I move around the house, or even go into the yard (outdoor access point), I never lose connectivity. I can stream a movie and move between each AP.

Because of how IP subnets work, I would do one of the following:
1. Set the Google Puck to 'Bridged' mode or look at getting a true AP (not a wireless router). Putting the Puck into Bridge mode will not let you use the additional pucks for the mesh

2. Go for an access point. An AP uses your existing network IP router. They generally only have 1 port, which would plug into your FiOS router, or any other network switch. You would only have 1 IP subnet now, instead of 2.

3. Enable the FiOS WiFi for phones/tablets that will be streaming.

------

As for the speed issues, Mesh networks aren't the greatest. Each puck communicates wirelessly with the main puck. So if you don't have a great connection between the pucks, there will be latency there, not to mention the standard latency from wifi in general.

Are you able to move the pucks closer together? If they're on different floors, that would cause more of an issue as the signal now has to pass through structural obstacles.

If it were me (and it was), I'd go for option 2 above.

Here is how I have my set up.
My Fios Modem/Router is in my living room. I have my AVR, HTPC and Apple TV 4K connected to it, in addition to a switch in my basement.
The switch in the basement has my access points plugged into it. The APs run to different parts of my house + yard.


I hope this helps!
Surprisingly enough the IP camera has been working well for the most part with my current setup, the only issue I have is when the camera connects to the wrong WiFi and I have to setup it up again using a wired connection.


So, with my current setup I have one main puck in the basement, right next to the router, and another in the living room and another upstairs in the office. Things seem ok but still the speed isn't all that great. We have a 2,400 Sq Ft home with 2 floors and a basement, do you think 2 UniFi APs will provide enough coverage or do you think 3 would be more ideal? And which version of Ubiquiti APs do you recommend? I see that the cheapest 3 pack (enterprise version) runs from around $250 to $550 for the AC Pro version so I'd rather not go shell out $500+ if the AC Pro is unnecessary for what my needs are. Also, the one thing that worries me is that I keep reading that the setup isn't that easy for a newb but I feel like I can do it if I read up on it. I just don't want to run into problems with fixing issues in the future since I'm not an expert at this stuff.


I think I'll definitely go with option 2 as you suggested as I'm regretting purchasing the Google WiFi, especially after learning more about a mesh network and it's issues. I know you said the APs should preferably be hardwired through Ethernet and I can do so for an AP in the basement and one in the living room but the one in the office would require a really long Ethernet run and I know length of the run and # of wires connected together pose other issues. I can still do it with buying a large spool but there's a chance we might not be in the house past summer so I'd rather not spend the time doing that especially with a 4 month old. In one my old apartments I wasn't allowed to run Ethernet through the wall so I ended up using a Powerline kit to piggy back of the electric system to go from router to AP. Do you know of any issues or recommendations against using the Powerline kit for the AP in the office?


Your post absolutely helped so I really appreciate all the advice!
Krishna Kothamasu is offline  
post #5 of 17 Old 04-27-2019, 11:44 AM - Thread Starter
Newbie
 
Join Date: Apr 2019
Posts: 8
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Liked: 0
Quote:
Originally Posted by Stephen Hopkins View Post
Could you disable routing on the Verizon router and let it simply work as a modem, allowing Google Wifi act as the router? This will at least eliminate the double-NAT, but I don't know if it would eliminate the Verizon restriction on TV streaming. Otherwise, as mentioned above, enable the Fios WiFi for phones/tablets... you should still be able to access the IP cam if it's set up properly for outside access or is a cloud-based camera. Unfortunately, none of this will help with the situation where the ethernet out from the Verizon modem/router just stops working (except you'd have the Verizon WiFi as a backup.

Hey thanks, I actually had it setup with the Wifi disabled but I think I need to put the FIOS router into bridge mode to make the Google one the primary router. To your point I think I'd still have issues with the TV as I've found out that the main FIOS STB box won't load any widgets with the FIOS router out of the equation currently and the client boxes I have in the bedrooms are having major issues connecting to the main STB box without the FIOS router. I think I'm going to go with cowboydude's suggestion of getting the Ubiquiti APs but I'm waiting on a replacement FIOS router to be delivered next week. Also, I can make the Google pucks APs by hardwiring each one so I might do that while I learn more about Ubiquiti APs especially since a 3 pack of those with a cloud key are going to run me about $500 at least.



Thank you for the insight though!
Krishna Kothamasu is offline  
post #6 of 17 Old 04-27-2019, 02:44 PM
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2014
Posts: 372
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 213 Post(s)
Liked: 16
I just used Ubiquiti as an example. They are not easy to set up.

If I didn’t do this professionally, I would avoid them. They work great but there is a steep learning curve.

Any access point would work.

The Ubiquiti devices are nice because they have seamless roaming.

If you’re up to the challenge go for it! Don’t forget the cloud key. That is the device used to setup the system. If you don’t want the cloud key, you’ll need to install the UniFi software on a computer to set it up.

The APs I have are the AC Pro models.

Check out Netgears AP offerings if you want something more traditional, and easier to setup.
cowbodude99 is offline  
post #7 of 17 Old 04-27-2019, 04:23 PM - Thread Starter
Newbie
 
Join Date: Apr 2019
Posts: 8
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Liked: 0
Quote:
Originally Posted by cowbodude99 View Post
I just used Ubiquiti as an example. They are not easy to set up.

If I didn’t do this professionally, I would avoid them. They work great but there is a steep learning curve.

Any access point would work.

The Ubiquiti devices are nice because they have seamless roaming.

If you’re up to the challenge go for it! Don’t forget the cloud key. That is the device used to setup the system. If you don’t want the cloud key, you’ll need to install the UniFi software on a computer to set it up.

The APs I have are the AC Pro models.

Check out Netgears AP offerings if you want something more traditional, and easier to setup.

Thanks again! That's what I was afraid of with Ubiquiti, I know enough to be dangerous but would rather avoid something that requires more than a cursor knowledge of networking. I appreciate the insight and recommendations and would you say the NetGear APs would be the next best thing for someone like me? Alternatively, I've read that I can just make my Google WiFi pucks as APs rather than as a mesh so I might also try that to see if that'll clear up some of my issues. Thanks!
Krishna Kothamasu is offline  
post #8 of 17 Old 04-27-2019, 05:51 PM
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2014
Posts: 372
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 213 Post(s)
Liked: 16
If you can set the mesh to APs instead that would be great.

If not, a Netgear Nighthawk would work.

NETGEAR (R8000-100NAS) Nighthawk X6 AC3200 Tri-Band WiFi Router, Gigabit Ethernet, Compatible with Amazon Echo/Alexa https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00KWHMR6G..._bFpXCb5JG4CXQ

They can be set to AP Mode. I’d place it on the first floor. It should service all 3 floors.

You didn’t say what you wanted to spend, but that until has almost 25,000 reviews on Amazon alone!

They make less expensive versions, you’ll see them listed in Amazon if you scroll down to the comparison section.
cowbodude99 is offline  
post #9 of 17 Old 04-28-2019, 07:27 PM - Thread Starter
Newbie
 
Join Date: Apr 2019
Posts: 8
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Liked: 0
Quote:
Originally Posted by cowbodude99 View Post
If you can set the mesh to APs instead that would be great.

If not, a Netgear Nighthawk would work.

NETGEAR (R8000-100NAS) Nighthawk X6 AC3200 Tri-Band WiFi Router, Gigabit Ethernet, Compatible with Amazon Echo/Alexa

They can be set to AP Mode. I’d place it on the first floor. It should service all 3 floors.

You didn’t say what you wanted to spend, but that until has almost 25,000 reviews on Amazon alone!a

They make less expensive versions, you’ll see them listed in Amazon if you scroll down to the comparison section.

So, I did setup two of the pucks as AP since I already had ethernet runs but the one the office I couldn't run an ethernet cable so I was originally intending use a powerline kit I already had but it's unfortunate not pickup an ethernet connection so I ended up using a WiFi extender I had laying around and gave it the same SSID as my main network. Things were going alright until the IP camera started giving me some issues but I think that's because of the camera itself and it has trouble connecting to the other APs when the extender is unplugged or isn't found.



Once again thank you very much! The price reasonable and review do look really good so I think I might bite the bullet and buy this router to be used as an AP.



One last question, does putting the router in AP mode Vs using it as router as it's intended cause any slow down in the speeds or does it not matter?
Krishna Kothamasu is offline  
post #10 of 17 Old 04-29-2019, 12:38 PM
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2014
Posts: 372
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 213 Post(s)
Liked: 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by Krishna Kothamasu View Post
So, I did setup two of the pucks as AP since I already had ethernet runs but the one the office I couldn't run an ethernet cable so I was originally intending use a powerline kit I already had but it's unfortunate not pickup an ethernet connection so I ended up using a WiFi extender I had laying around and gave it the same SSID as my main network. Things were going alright until the IP camera started giving me some issues but I think that's because of the camera itself and it has trouble connecting to the other APs when the extender is unplugged or isn't found.



Once again thank you very much! The price reasonable and review do look really good so I think I might bite the bullet and buy this router to be used as an AP.



One last question, does putting the router in AP mode Vs using it as router as it's intended cause any slow down in the speeds or does it not matter?
Hi there. I don't believe it slows it down. I haven't personally used this specific model, but I haven't noticed any difference in other models I've used.

The Extender will add latency. Anytime you add a wireless device to repeat a signal, it will be slower.

Ideally, you only want 1 device using a set SSID. If you have two devices using the same SSID, you may have connection issues. The two devices are unaware of each other, therefore do not do handoff properly. So when you move around the house, you may connect to one device, then go to the other side of the house, and the AP will not let you go... so you end up stuck to the AP with worse signal (relative to your location).

If you need more than one AP, you can choose to use different SSIDs for each one. For things that are stationary (IP Camera, Desktop) you can use an SSID for those devices. These devices only have to know about this one SSID.

For devices that move around, you could configure them to know about each AP (each SSID). There won't be any SSID overlap, and devices should switch to the stronger signal. Your mileage may vary on that though.
-For example, laptops can be more aggressive than say, an iPhone. Laptops are also configurable on how aggressive they are.
cowbodude99 is offline  
post #11 of 17 Old 04-29-2019, 12:55 PM - Thread Starter
Newbie
 
Join Date: Apr 2019
Posts: 8
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Liked: 0
well thanks again as usual, you've been very helpful and patient explaining things so I really appreciate that. We had an incident last night where the extender was causing issues with the baby monitor and my wife ended up having to sleep on the floor in the baby's room to make sure she could hear him...so suffice to say wife wasn't very happy with me this morning I ended up ordering the router you recommended, there were some bad reviews but that link you sent had reviews combined for all models; the AC 3200 wasn't rated the best but it still seemed to have plenty of horse power what I'm trying to do.


In terms of the SSIDs that's an interesting bit of information that I never knew of. I always thought that the SSIDs for all APs need to be the same in order for me to not notice any disruption in WiFi Signal when moving from AP to AP (I guess the device does it automatically) hence I've been giving all routers/APs the same SSID forever.


I guess I thought you would have to be connected to the same SSID so that I can for example print remotely, stream from NAS, view IP camera etc. I've given the Camera a static IP so I can map it in the different baby monitor apps and I guess I should do the same for other devices that'll always connect to one SSID exclusively? I was thinking I'd do so for the NAS but I have that hard wired for the best streaming speed. I'm assuming that since all my devices will be connected to one network (FIOS Router as main and eventually the Netgear one I order will go into AP mode) it shouldn't be an issue to have separate SSIDs for the router and each access point?


Again, I want to thank you for all your help. I feel like I'm almost there with what I need to do with my whole setup so hopefully I'll have a happy wife again
Krishna Kothamasu is offline  
post #12 of 17 Old 04-29-2019, 01:24 PM
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2014
Posts: 372
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 213 Post(s)
Liked: 16
Having separate SSIDs should be just fine. They are access points, so it provide network access to wireless clients. Both devices providing SSIDs will be wired to the same wired network. I don't see any issue with that.

It's no problem! Tough night for your wife, I'm sure (and now a tough day for you )

I think that router is plenty powerful for what you've described.

When you get the device, if you have any questions about how things should be wired/set up, just let me know. Again, I'm not familiar with the interface on the device, but Netgear uses pretty standard terminology.

Once you have the device, try to draw out how things are connected. It would be very helpful in troubleshooting.
cowbodude99 is offline  
post #13 of 17 Old 04-29-2019, 01:35 PM - Thread Starter
Newbie
 
Join Date: Apr 2019
Posts: 8
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Liked: 0
Thanks! The router should be here tomorrow and the replacement FIOS router will be here sometime this week.



So, what I'm thinking is that the FIOS router will go right next to the ONT (in the basement) and I'll have one Ethernet run go to the home theater in the basement and I have another run going to the living room where I have my AV cabinet. Currently I have it setup to so that the run connects to a switch in the cabinet and then I have the NAS, Xbox and current AP/router hooked into the switch. Is it better to have the Ethernet run go to the Night Hawk router first and then supply Ethernet to the switch? Also, the living room is on the one side of the house and has built ins so it's easier to hide the router out of sight but I'm wondering if having the router in the middle of the house would be better (especially since the office is on the other side of the house on another floor) but I'll play around with different locations when I'm ready to install the router.



As always thanks again!
Krishna Kothamasu is offline  
post #14 of 17 Old 04-30-2019, 12:18 PM
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2014
Posts: 372
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 213 Post(s)
Liked: 16
Hi there.

When it comes to Wifi, central is better, usually. Since the wifi goes out equally in all directions, I would suggest placing it in the center of the house on the 1st floor.

When I had my APs in my basement (before inwall runs), I had connectivity issues. Once I moved it to my first floor, it worked much better.

I think it was related to the concrete walls down there.

Also, it shouldn't matter if you plug the run into the AP directly or a switch first.
cowbodude99 is offline  
post #15 of 17 Old 04-30-2019, 06:30 PM - Thread Starter
Newbie
 
Join Date: Apr 2019
Posts: 8
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Liked: 0
Quote:
Originally Posted by cowbodude99 View Post
Hi there.

When it comes to Wifi, central is better, usually. Since the wifi goes out equally in all directions, I would suggest placing it in the center of the house on the 1st floor.

When I had my APs in my basement (before inwall runs), I had connectivity issues. Once I moved it to my first floor, it worked much better.

I think it was related to the concrete walls down there.

Also, it shouldn't matter if you plug the run into the AP directly or a switch first.

Once again, appreciate the insight! I got the Night Hawk router in today and I definitely like it, however I have it in the same spot as the old router/AP (in the built ins behind books etc.) and am definitely going to take your advice and try to find a central spot in the house as I feel like I'm probably not getting the most out of the router.
Krishna Kothamasu is offline  
post #16 of 17 Old 05-01-2019, 06:40 AM
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2014
Posts: 372
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 213 Post(s)
Liked: 16
Right. Burying it behind books in a bookshelf, not really great.

Let me know how it turns out once you move it!
cowbodude99 is offline  
post #17 of 17 Old 05-09-2019, 12:26 PM
Member
 
theproman23's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Posts: 40
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 11 Post(s)
Liked: 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by cowbodude99 View Post
Right. Burying it behind books in a bookshelf, not really great.

Let me know how it turns out once you move it!
So I wanted to give an update with everything. First of all thanks for the recommendation with the Nighthawk Router, I frikkin love that thing. I've noticed my browsing and network speeds are significantly faster. I still have the router setup in the book shelf but nothing blocking it and it's not buried anymore. Ideally I'd like to move it to the dining room (central part of the house) but it looks like we'll be moving soon so I'd rather not put the time and effort into running the Ethernet cable only to have to patch up things and clean it up when we do move.

Also, I ended up getting rid of the FIOS router all together. I read some posts and basically I had to perform a DHCP lease release from my FIOS router and then hook in the Nighthawk directly into the ONT immediately. So, the Nighthawk is the main router now and I have everything getting their IPs from this router so things have been running smooth and I can access my NAS from anywhere (which was an issue before with double NAT from having two routers). And to get rid of the FIOS router (and to be able to not lose some TV features) I had a MOCA adapter laying around and I hooked the COAX into that and added an Ethernet link to my current router and all my FIOS TV services (on demand, guide and Netflix) are all working great.

Thanks again for all your help!
beerhunt likes this.
theproman23 is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
Reply Networking, Media Servers & Content Streaming

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page


Forum Jump: 

Posting Rules  
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off