Wireless Bands

Discussions about Internet service providers (ISPs), the Meetinghouse Firewall, wired and wireless networking, usage, management, and support of Meetinghouse Internet
drepouille
Senior Member
Posts: 2750
Joined: Sun Jul 01, 2007 6:06 pm
Location: Plattsmouth, NE

Wireless Bands

Postby drepouille » Fri Dec 04, 2020 7:00 pm

I had bought a few super cheap ($2) USB wireless adapters (Realtek Mini USB Wireless 802.11B/G/N LAN Card WiFi Network Adapter RTL8188). Although they claim to support 802.11n, they only use the 2.4GHz band, not the 5GHz band. 
I bought them because I "assumed" that the Meraki WAPs in the chapel only use the 2.4GHz band. Well I found out today that I was wrong. 

We have four Meraki WAPs. I used the WiFiman Android app on my phone to check the signals in the chapel. On the 2.4GHz band, I found that one WAP is using channel 1, one WAP is using channel 6, and the other two WAPs are using channel 11. 

The bad news is that all the surrounding neighbors are also using channels 1, 6, and 11. I discovered during a baptism last Saturday that my cheap wireless adapters were dropping the connection frequently. I think it is a combination of them using a crowded 2.4GHz band and the fact that they have virtually no antenna in their tiny USB dongle package.

When I looked at the 5GHz band, I was surprised to find Liahona on several channels, while NONE of our neighbors are using the 5GHz band for anything. Great! I just need to replace my super cheap wireless adapters with others that can use the 5GHz band. Actually, the new adapters arrived at my house today. Ha!
Dana Repouille, Plattsmouth, Nebraska

drepouille
Senior Member
Posts: 2750
Joined: Sun Jul 01, 2007 6:06 pm
Location: Plattsmouth, NE

The 2.4GHz band is dead to me now

Postby drepouille » Sun Dec 06, 2020 6:15 am

The 2.4GHz band is so crowded that it is nearly useless. The Meraki WAPs default to channel 1, 6, or 11, which are also the channels used by most of our neighbors. So if the wireless adapter on your laptop, phone, or tablet cannot use the 5GHz band, it will likely be dropping connections to the Meraki WAPs all the time as you walk around the meetinghouse.

I switched to Netgear WNDA3100 wireless adapter yesterday, and the 5GHz signal was clear and solid. Like going from night to day.
Dana Repouille, Plattsmouth, Nebraska


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