Now that fiber is being installed in Loreto Bay, many homeowners are realizing the importance of having high-quality mesh routers in their casa. A good mesh system will give you a strong signal everywhere in your casa.
If you depend only on the router that Telmex provides, you will be very frustrated at the limited wireless coverage. Why? Because it must be installed near the data panel. The data panel in almost all homes is in the outdoor utility closet surrounded by thick concrete walls. Then the router is often put inside the data panel, a metal box. This means that the wireless signals just won’t reach the areas of your home where you want to use the Internet.
I’ve already posted several blogs talking about how to prepare for the fiber optic connections and the many ways you can use it. Below are links to the previous posts.
- Converting My Casa From Cat5 Cabling to Cat6 Cabling
- Internet Options in Loreto Bay Today and Tomorrow
- Getting Strong Internet Service In Your Entire Loreto Bay Casa
- Automate Your Loreto Bay Casa With Smart Devices
- Bringing Streaming Services to Your Loreto Bay Television
Before we talk about mesh routers, we need to first go over the standards for wireless networking. While we can go way back, I’m only going to go back a couple of versions. Why not farther? Quite simply, these are the standards that matter today.
WiFi 5 also goes by the confusing name of 802.11ac. It has been the predominant standard since 2014. As it is already seven years old, that’s why I’m not going to go back to versions before that.
WiFi 6 also goes by the confusing name of 802.11ax. It first appeared in late 2018 and brought several improvements. It performs 4 times better than WiFi 5 in crowded areas with numerous devices. Yes, that describes Loreto Bay. It offers up to 40% higher peak data rates, greatly improved network efficiency and can extend battery life on devices that support it.
Each of those flavors, WiFi 5 and WiFi 6, broadcast signals at both 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz. In 2020 the WiFi Alliance added the new version of WiFi 6E for routers that also broadcast at 6 GHz.
My recommendation is that any router you purchase support WiFi 6 at a minimum. Given that WiFi 6E is still fairly new, the routers and devices that support it are fairly scarce.
In short mesh routers are two are more separate routers that work together to provide a strong signal on the same network name. For example, your network name could be “MyLoretoCasa” and it would remain the same connection as you switch between each of the mesh nodes. In fact, you won’t even know when you switch.
Why do you need mesh? Quite simply because of how our homes are constructed with very thick walls and floors that are filled with rebar. At the least, you need a mesh node upstairs and downstairs. For those with larger homes, you may want three or even four nodes. Yes, more nodes cost more.
I personally have not tested more than the mesh system I own. So I’m going to link to Best mesh routers for 2021 on cnet as they have tested them all. Below I’ve provided Amazon links to each of the routers they list on Amazon. If you’re gonna shop on Amazon, I’d appreciate if you use my link as I earn a small commission (your thank you to me) and your price is the lowest available on Amazon at the time. Note these are links to US Amazon. I have put links to Amazon Mexico in parenthesis though I don’t earn commissions on those.
- TP-Link Deco W7200 (not on Amazon)
TP-Link Deco X68 (Amazon Mexico) – not listed by cnet
- Google Nest Wifi – AC2200 (Amazon Mexico)
- Amazon eero Pro 6 (Amazon Mexico – note that Mexico doesn’t sell a 3-pack, so you would need to buy three of these)
- NETGEAR Orbi Whole Home Tri-band Mesh WiFi 6 System (Amazon Mexico)
- ASUS ZenWiFi AX6600 Tri-Band Mesh WiFi 6 System (Amazon Mexico)
This is the system that I purchased a year ago and it works great!
- NETGEAR Orbi Whole Home Mesh WiFi System (Amazon Mexico)
All of these systems allow you to connect each of the nodes wirelessly. Some of them offer a third channel dedicated to connecting the nodes. Obviously this third channel is better to have since the main channels used by your other devices won’t have to compete with the mesh connections. Another option on some is a “wired” connection. This means you have to run a wire between the nodes. Obviously this provides the best mesh connection, but also could be more difficult without having a contractor run extra wires for you.
With any of the mesh networks, you’ll plug the main nodes into one of the Ethernet (Internet) wall outlets in your casa. If all is wired well, that outlet is getting the full signal from the Telmex router in the data panel. Then your mesh system spreads the signal everywhere in your casa!
For those who decide to do nothing and rely on the router that Telmex provides, you are going to be very frustrated at the lack of a strong wireless signal.