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Orbi WiFi 7 RBE973
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Best extender to get and how hard to install?

Interested13
Follower

Best extender to get and how hard to install?

Hello - I'm not an IT specialist, so forgive me if I'm not using exact language here.... I  have an ORBI router RBR50 and a satellite (if that's what it's called) RBS50. We have a Comcast modem which provides a duo 2.4 and 5.0 Ghz speed. I created a guest network through the Orbi app that is dedicated 2.4 so my landscape irrigation system (Rachio) would connect  - it was disconnecting as the network fluxuated from 2.4 and 5 and Rachio told me I needed a dedicated 2.4 network. The name of the guest network is the same as the main 2.4/5.0 network with the word "guest" after it. I was wondering if I could get a wifi extender to make sure the 2.4 guest network got a stronger signal in the garage - was thinking I'd put it in the kitchen next to the garage. 

Questions:

  • Can I "boost" the signal of only one of these? The dedicated 2.4 guest OR the duo 2.4/5.0 main one? Or will the extender boost both? If it would only boost the 2.4 guest network, then if using wifi in the kitchen, we'd have to switch to the 2.4 guest network. If we do that, then maybe our Sonos (which runs off the 2.4/5.0 non-guest network) wouldn't work?
  • If I buy the plug in extender (like the small size and idea of being able to move this around)  - https://www.netgear.com/orbi/rbw30.aspx - which appears to only provide coverage for speeds up to 2.2 Gbps, will this slow down my whole network? I read this somewhere: "RBK50is AC3000 and the RBW30 is AC2200. The backhaul is also different and Tri-band vs Dual band. When mixing, your network speed capability will be limited to the max of your lowest device. 
  • If the above would slow my overall speed down, do I need to buy another RBS50 instead? I don't think I need the ports... I just want to plug into power; don't have hard wired internet cable anywhere but to the main RBR50....https://www.netgear.com/orbi/rbs50.aspx.
  • So - OVERALL question is 1) which extender should I get and will it boost both the guest 2.4 and the regular 2.4/5.0 network? 
  • I just don't want to mess up the great network speeds we have with our regular 2.4/5.0 set up...

Thank you for any thoughts...

Model: RBR50|Orbi AC3000 Tri-band WiFi Router
Message 1 of 11
CrimpOn
Guru

Re: Best extender to get and how hard to install?

It appears to me that there are several conflicting issues and some misinformation.  Orbi is designed to broadcast the same SSID on both 2.4G and 5G.  A "guest" WiFi also broadcasts the same SSID on 2.4G and 5G.  So, activating the guest WiFi changes nothing.  There are some WiFi devices which are difficult to set up because the smartphone app was poorly written and users have developed a variety of methods to deal with them.

 

Any brand of "extender" (Netgear, TP-Link, D-Link, etc.) can connect to the Orbi WiFi and create new WiFi networks with different names for 2.4G and 5G.  For about $30 you can purchase a WiFi "extender" that will connect to the Orbi and create a unique WiFi name that can be used to connect your landscape irrigation.

 

Sonos is a whole different "can of worms" that I am unqualified to address.

 

Message 2 of 11
FURRYe38
Guru

Re: Best extender to get and how hard to install?

If your ISP modem already has a router and wif built in, This would be a double NAT (two router) condition which isn't recommended. https://kb.netgear.com/30186/What-is-Double-NAT
https://kb.netgear.com/30187/How-to-fix-issues-with-Double-NAT
Couple of options,
1. Configure the modem for transparent bridge or modem only mode. Then use the Orbi router in router mode. You'll need to contact the ISP for help and information in regards to the modem being bridged correctly.
2. If you can't bridge the modem, disable ALL wifi radios on the modem, configure the modems DMZ/ExposedHost or IP Pass-Through for the IP address the Orbi router gets from the modem. Then you can use the Orbi router in Router mode.
3. Or disable all wifi radios on the modem and connect the Orbi router to the modem, configure AP mode on the Orbi router. https://kb.netgear.com/31218/How-do-I-configure-my-Orbi-router-to-act-as-an-access-point and https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H7LOcJ8GdDo&app=desktop 

 

Your Orbi should be good enough to handle wifi coverage and guest mode with out the addition of a extender. 

What is the size of your home? Sq Ft?

What is the distance between the router and satellite(s)? 30 feet is recommended in between RBR and RBS to begin with depending upon building materials when wirelessly connected. https://kb.netgear.com/000036466/How-far-should-I-place-my-Orbi-satellite-from-my-Orbi-router


@Interested13 wrote:

Hello - I'm not an IT specialist, so forgive me if I'm not using exact language here.... I  have an ORBI router RBR50 and a satellite (if that's what it's called) RBS50. We have a Comcast modem which provides a duo 2.4 and 5.0 Ghz speed. I created a guest network through the Orbi app that is dedicated 2.4 so my landscape irrigation system (Rachio) would connect  - it was disconnecting as the network fluxuated from 2.4 and 5 and Rachio told me I needed a dedicated 2.4 network. The name of the guest network is the same as the main 2.4/5.0 network with the word "guest" after it. I was wondering if I could get a wifi extender to make sure the 2.4 guest network got a stronger signal in the garage - was thinking I'd put it in the kitchen next to the garage. 

Questions:

  • Can I "boost" the signal of only one of these? The dedicated 2.4 guest OR the duo 2.4/5.0 main one? Or will the extender boost both? If it would only boost the 2.4 guest network, then if using wifi in the kitchen, we'd have to switch to the 2.4 guest network. If we do that, then maybe our Sonos (which runs off the 2.4/5.0 non-guest network) wouldn't work?
  • If I buy the plug in extender (like the small size and idea of being able to move this around)  - https://www.netgear.com/orbi/rbw30.aspx - which appears to only provide coverage for speeds up to 2.2 Gbps, will this slow down my whole network? I read this somewhere: "RBK50is AC3000 and the RBW30 is AC2200. The backhaul is also different and Tri-band vs Dual band. When mixing, your network speed capability will be limited to the max of your lowest device. 
  • If the above would slow my overall speed down, do I need to buy another RBS50 instead? I don't think I need the ports... I just want to plug into power; don't have hard wired internet cable anywhere but to the main RBR50....https://www.netgear.com/orbi/rbs50.aspx.
  • So - OVERALL question is 1) which extender should I get and will it boost both the guest 2.4 and the regular 2.4/5.0 network? 
  • I just don't want to mess up the great network speeds we have with our regular 2.4/5.0 set up...

Thank you for any thoughts...


 

Message 3 of 11
frustrateduser5
Aspirant

Re: Best extender to get and how hard to install?

Thank you for your response - i really appreciate it. I am thinking that it will be too complex for me to do anything but get a simple extender to reach the far side of the garage and hopefully not recognize the 5GHz frequency. If I play with all the Orbi settings to separate the two bands, I know something else will break - printers, thermostat, whatever and then I'll really be stuck because I just don't have the expertise (or patience) to fix it.

 

I just need a single band for this irrigation controller that has a stable, strong connection.

 

The irrigation company (Rachio) told me what the first person who responded to my post said, basically that any brand of "extender" (Netgear, TP-Link, D-Link, etc.) can connect to the Orbi WiFi and create new WiFi networks with different names for 2.4G and 5G that can be used to connect the landscape irrigation...The irrigation controller just needs a single band (either one) and a stable connection. Right now it drops during the day and reconnects at night - I'm guessing when we use less internet at night the signal gets stronger.)

 

I did read your post about a double NAT setup that might mess this all up and I might have that but I don't think I can troubleshoot that (I have a comcast modem that runs our phone and internet, then Orbi, then new extender, then irrigation controller). We have a 3500 sq ft two story house with the Orbi router downstairs next to the Comcast router in the center of the house (and the other Orbi directly upstairs) and then I'd have this new extender in the garage and then the irrigation controller there (that would be the only thing connected to the extender/new named wifi network). The garage controller is about 57 feet (walking) from the Orbi downstairs.

 

It seems that the Orbi will not naturally separate the 2.4 and 5.0 bands, so I guess I have to plug the extender in a place where it doesn't recognize the 5.0 but does the 2.4. Wish it weren't so complicated!

 

Anyway if you have any other thoughts, ideas, I'd welcome them! Thank you again.

 

 

 

.

 

 

Model: RBR50|Orbi AC3000 Tri-band WiFi Router
Message 4 of 11
CrimpOn
Guru

Re: Best extender to get and how hard to install?


@frustrateduser5 wrote:

The irrigation company (Rachio) told me what the first person who responded to my post said, basically that any brand of "extender" (Netgear, TP-Link, D-Link, etc.) can connect to the Orbi WiFi and create new WiFi networks with different names for 2.4G and 5G that can be used to connect the landscape irrigation...The irrigation controller just needs a single band (either one) and a stable connection. Right now it drops during the day and reconnects at night - I'm guessing when we use less internet at night the signal gets stronger.)

 

It seems that the Orbi will not naturally separate the 2.4 and 5.0 bands, so I guess I have to plug the extender in a place where it doesn't recognize the 5.0 but does the 2.4. Wish it weren't so complicated!


The Rachio support person gave good advice.  Purchase whatever "WiFi extender" is available and locate it where it will provide a good signal to the Rachio controller.  Irrigation controllers consume practically no data, so a 2.4G only extender will be fine.  Amazon sells many (many) WiFi extenders.  I would tend to stick with one of the major brands.  A TP-Link N300 would be fine. https://www.amazon.com/TP-Link-AC1750-inteligente-enrutadores-inal%C3%A1mbricos/dp/B0195Y0A42/ref=sr... 

 

 

Message 5 of 11
frustrateduser5
Aspirant

Re: Best extender to get and how hard to install?

Thank you so much for your response. Super helpful. Now I understand that the Orbi only uses a dual band.

 

The irrigation controller (Rachio) can only work with a single band and drops connection if the connections change back and forth between 2.4 and 5. I think I'll try a plug in Netgear extender (Netgear, hopefully for easy setup) near the garage and hope it'll be able to create a new, single 2.4 band for the irrigation controller. If not, if it creates two bands, I might be able to plug it in somewhere far enough away that it only recognizes the 2.4...?

 

Another person responded that I might have trouble due to a double NAT setup https://kb.netgear.com/30186/What-is-Double-NAT. I'm not sure if I have a double NAT setup. I have a single Comcast modem for our phone and internet that must have a built-in router because it broadcasts a 2.4 and 5.0 dual band as well, but I don't think anything is connected to it. Then the Orbi for all our devices, and then I'd have the new extender connected to the Irrigation controller only. Who knows? I wouldn't be able to fix that if that messes it all up...

 

Question for you: If I create a new wifi network with an extender, and that extender has a speed of 1200 mbps but the Orbi's speed is 3Gbps, will the new extender slow everything down? I'm hoping not, since it will be it's own network, but would love any additional thoughts, comments.  Thank you again!

 

This is the one I'm thinking of getting https://www.amazon.com/NETGEAR-Wi-Fi-Range-Extender-EX6120/dp/B014YN7LVE/ref=asc_df_B014YN7LVE/?tag=...

 

 

Model: RBR50|Orbi AC3000 Tri-band WiFi Router
Message 6 of 11
CrimpOn
Guru

Re: Best extender to get and how hard to install?

That Netgear product should work fine.  It just "costs more" because it creates both 2.4G and 5G WiFi extensions.

 

This issue of "Requires 2.4G" often causes more confusion than it should.  If the device actually says, "Requires 2.4G WiFi", that usually means that the device has no 5G radio capability.  That's sort of like saying, "Requires two AA batteries."  You can have piles of C cells, D cells, AAA cells, and watch batteries, but the thing won't work unless you supply AA batteries.

 

Perhaps if you identify the exact model of irrigation controller, we can look at the User Manual and confirm what it requires.

Message 7 of 11
frustrateduser5
Aspirant

Re: Best extender to get and how hard to install?

Thank you so much.

Message 8 of 11
frustrateduser5
Aspirant

Re: Best extender to get and how hard to install?

I was wrong - the Rachio supports both 2.4 and 5.0 but does need a single band - can't go back and forth between them. i thought I'd use am extender with a new SSID and use 2.4 since it's far from the router.: https://www.amazon.com/Rachio-Controller-Generation-Compatible-Intelligence/dp/B07CZ5K355/ref=redir_...

Model: RBR50|Orbi AC3000 Tri-band WiFi Router
Message 9 of 11
frustrateduser5
Aspirant

Re: Best extender to get and how hard to install?

And I'm also wondering if an extender with a speed of 1200 MBPS might slow down the Orbi with a 3000 MBPS speed. If I create a new SSID/wifi name for the extender then perhaps it won't mess up the Orbi SSID/wifi network name?

Model: RBR50|Orbi AC3000 Tri-band WiFi Router
Message 10 of 11
CrimpOn
Guru

Re: Best extender to get and how hard to install?


@frustrateduser5 wrote:

And I'm also wondering if an extender with a speed of 1200 MBPS might slow down the Orbi with a 3000 MBPS speed. If I create a new SSID/wifi name for the extender then perhaps it won't mess up the Orbi SSID/wifi network name?


No. The extender appears as "just another device" to the Orbi and will have no effect on how the Orbi operates between units or with other devices.

Message 11 of 11
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