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Ikon-TNG

Best Wi-Fi for a large restaurant?

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Ikon-TNG

I have a son who is working at a restaurant. The WiFi is pretty bad apparently. The manager knows my son has some tech abilities, so he asked him to see if he could improve the WiFi. Yesterday, he Skyped me to see if I had any ideas. I told him I would look into it and get back to him, thinking the whole time that what I would do is ask the experts --> you guys :)

 

So, if you were asked to set up WiFi in a fairly large restaurant, what would you do? I see you have several forums about WiFi, including things like eero, open-mesh, Luma, etc. I've visited their sites and found out they make products that create "mesh" networks. I'm not sure of all the tech, but it seems like these products are designed specifically to eliminate dead zones and give more even coverage over large areas. Is that true? If so, what are your opinions about which product is best?

Edited by Dave
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schoondoggy

What does the coverage area look like/layout?

Is it multi-level or one story? 

How many rooms/areas? 

How fast is the Internet circuit?

Is this just for guests or for the business as well?

 

Mesh helps with coverage and hand-offs, but if the resturant is large a traditional WAP system may be better.

If the area is not too large Orbi Pro may be a good fit:

https://www.netgear.com/orbi-pro/

Ubiquiti would be an option for a bigger area:

https://www.ubnt.com

 

 

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Ikon-TNG

I don't actually know the layout, but I gather it's a fairly large restaurant. My son says the bar is roughly in the center, so the restaurant can't be too small, or there wouldn't be room for tables & booths around the bar.

 

Until I saw the mesh stuff on this site I had been thinking a wireless access point at the bar might do the trick, but the mesh stuff seemed pretty intriguing. Are you saying the mesh systems can't handle larger areas as well as the older style routers?

 

Oh, by the way, apparently there are Ethernet jacks at the bar, so it would be possible to connect an access point up there, and have it wired back to the switch that sits in a rack at one end of the kitchen.

Edited by Ikon-TNG

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schoondoggy

Mesh does handle large areas better than a traditional router, but if the area is very large or has multiple rooms, it would be good to look at WAP's.

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Helzy

I'd be inclimed to take a look at ubiquiti as well. Very reasonable prices and they do also have an interesting mesh offering. I personally like their management software. You can import a floor layout to best configure the ap's

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ShadowPeo

The Ubiquiti stuff I have been trialling is cheap, but it has nowhere near the "punch" especially on the 5Ghz bands of even a mid-range router (comparing to an Asus DSL-R62 IIRC). If I put it up against any of my more enterprise equipment such as the Aerohives, Cisco's or XIRRUS, whilst not in the same class, do not be fooled, If I am to get the same 5GHZ coverage as what a couple of these would provide I am going to need to put in somewhere between 4 and 6 of the AC-Pro's.

 

Still quite a bit of cost savings, but not as much as you would expect given the billing some people give them. In this case (whilst I could technically get away with 1 WAP 2 is more stable and reliable given the area) it would be (for me at least) about 3K to put in one of the true enterprise systems, the Ubiquiti will make it 1K by the time I have enough coverage.

 

Where this then falls down is channels, doing this means I use/need more channels which are getting scarce, not only are others in the area using them, but if I go to 80Mhz or even 160Mhz channels as these "take over" other channels to increase their bandwidth, this further decreases the number of channels available, making harder and harder to fit more WAP's in, therefore making less WAP's with wider channels more appealing

 

Having said that, credit where credit is due. The UniFi system with details on all the statistics absolutely rocks, many of the big players could learn from this I have not seen anything from the "big boys" that even approaches this level of user-friendliness 

Edited by ShadowPeo
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edgars

Well, Ruckus is a very good solution, they have a cool patentedantenna design, which helps to improve APs clients signal. And its most stable wifi i ever saw, especially in “dirty” environment

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Ikon-TNG

Just had a look at some of the Ruckus prices.....yikes! It would cost thousands of $ to get full coverage in the restaurant. I doubt management would go for that.

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schoondoggy

Have you determined if WiFi coverage is the issue or if it is a slow internet connection?

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schoondoggy

Or both

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