Netgear Orbi

Discussion in 'Mac OS X Server, Xserve, and Networking' started by apolloa, Jan 26, 2017.

  1. apolloa, Jan 26, 2017
    Last edited: Jan 27, 2017

    apolloa macrumors G3

    apolloa

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    #1
    I've purchased the Netgear Orbi, it hasn't been delivered yet. But I will post my thoughts on it. I bought it as it's overkill for my house but in my room upstairs the wireless is week, the modem router is in the hallway downstairs where my master telephone socket is. I can't have some giant box with fifty ariels in that location!
    I have tried an access point and it just seems to play havoc with my broadband connection?

    So I'm excited to have a solution that should offer fast and stable wireless. It's an expensive solution, but it does mean I can change Internet providers at will and easily add their router into the wireless system. It's also nice to have the freedom to just plug the satellite into the mains and that's it.

    Oh and I can't buy any other system currently apart the Google WiFi system that costs even more in the UK!
     
  2. satcomer, Jan 27, 2017
    Last edited: Jan 27, 2017

    satcomer macrumors 603

    satcomer

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    #2
    Just make sure you first plugin the main router let it boot up and set it up to the way you want it. Then after all that setting up then setup the satellite to connect to the main. This way you will avoid the pitfalls others have seen.
     
  3. apolloa, Jan 29, 2017
    Last edited: Jan 29, 2017

    apolloa thread starter macrumors G3

    apolloa

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    #3
    Ok so...

    Got the Orbi on Friday evening. The units are nice and stylish but large, also the tops of them seem flimsy and their is a hole at the top that the flimsy looking plastic covers on raised stilts, so the air can escape from the units. Their are lots of ports too in the units, all gigabit.
    The Ethernet cable it comes with is a flat 2 meter Cat5E one, fine for me as I only get 30mbps on Fibre.

    The lights that glow from the top of the devices in a ring effect, thanks to the aforementioned plastic top, automatically turn off after a few minutes so they don't distract you.

    The Orbi units are also covered on the outside in white rubber feeling plastic, like the Amazon Fire TV remote, not sure how they will attract dirt over time? But they look fashionable.

    Setup was dead simple, turned off WiFi on my ISP router/ modem, plug in the base unit, plug in the satellite unit.
    Once that's done you connect to the default wireless of the Orbi and open its settings webpage, it starts very simply getting you to choose a router password, then rename your wireless and setup a wireless password if you chose to.

    Then you can connect all your devices and that's it........

    Although......

    With the Orbi in wireless AP mode you lose access to QOS and other settings.

    I found out that the Orbi set itself up into router mode, I had to manually change it to access mode, also I had to manually enable the Beam Forming AND MU MIMO functions as these were all off by default? Which I don't get?

    And I also had to manually set the channel on the 2.4ghz network as with it set to Auto mode, the Orbi system was automatically constantly changing to ANY channel, I mean ANY channel from 1 to 13, including all those overlapping channels.
    The 5ghz has no automatic channel selection option.

    Once that was done though, and after selecting my channels, the performance is very good and noticeable on my devices. I get nearly maximum to maximum signal strength in my room where I got low to medium signal strength. The Orbi satellite is outside my room door on the landing on a small table.

    So I have to say overall it does what it says on the tin. I do think performance could be better, but it's easy to setup, even with the advanced options it's easy.

    The speed as I said is noticeably faster just, I don't transfer files or anything though and just use internet services through my devices. My 1st gen Fire TV usually gets the worst signal as it's behind my TV, it's WiFi strength increased too.

    So all in all it's a good solution, although pretty expensive, it's able to cover my house and room where I had bad wireless before. I would recommend it.
     
  4. Trash Can macrumors member

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    #4
  5. apolloa thread starter macrumors G3

    apolloa

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    #5
    None of my iOS devices have had a single problem, the first thing Orbi did though was install a firmware update so that I guess will have fixed some issues? In fact none of my devices have had a problem, I haven't tried printing yet though. My Fire TV gets a better signal, still not good but it is behind my tv in a holder cable tied to the metal bracket arm the TVs on so I can't complain haha.
    I have two iPad Pros an iPhone 6S and iPod Touch current gen and all work fine.
     
  6. jhsonderb macrumors newbie

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    Oct 22, 2015
    #6
    My experience seemed similar to yours. A few burps with the setup starting in router mode which I subsequently configured the Orbi router and Satellite devices to access points. Also, firmware updates were a little cumbersome.

    Having worked through those issues, I am very happy with the improved WiFi in my 60 year old plastered walled house. I also like the web based configuration utility which is more than adequate since I am using the Orbis in access mode with DHCP's assigned by my U-Verse router.
     
  7. Trash Can macrumors member

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    #7
    Thanks for the feedback.

    One other question I should've asked earlier.... do you have Nest cams? I read they have a tendency to drop offline several times a day. I tried Velop for a few days and returned it for this issue. Apparently, it's a pretty widespread problem, one that I could've discovered by doing my homework before purchasing.
     
  8. jhsonderb macrumors newbie

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    #8
    I don't have Nest cams. I do have Netgear Arlo Pro cameras (5 cameras with a hub connected to my LAN via ethernet). Very satisfied with that setup since I wanted wireless cameras triggered by motion and didn't want to incur a monthly subscription fee. My satisfaction with the Netgear Arlo Pro setup actually stimulated me to get the Netgear Orbi which I am also very happy with.
     
  9. apolloa thread starter macrumors G3

    apolloa

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    #9
    Afraid not, the dog looks after the security haha.. someone's always home too. Although I would probably look at the Nest one if I wanted one.
    One thing I need to look into is the increased pings on my Xbox One S, it gets a maximum wireless AC connection but the Pings seem to have increased slightly.
     
  10. Trash Can macrumors member

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    #10
    UPDATE: I purchased a 2-pack Orbi system a few days ago. Initial setup was a breeze - no hiccups or glitches. As I previously mentioned, I was concerned about iOS and Nest Cam disconnects, but I'm happy to report that I haven't experienced any of that. In fact, it's been the opposite. Totally happy camper here - rock solid coverage everywhere in our home! I don't dig too deep into this type of stuff, so I haven't tinkered with any default settings to try to improve performance. It's performing flawlessly as is, at least as far as I can tell, so I'll continue to follow the old adage "if it ain't broke, don't fix it."

    Side note: some users are reporting that they resolved their iOS disconnects by reducing the 2.4 ghz output to 25%, although as mentioned above, I didn't need to do that.

    All is good. I'm glad I took the plunge!
     
  11. Trash Can macrumors member

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    #11
    UPDATE #2:

    I spoke too soon. While my initial impression of Orbi was good, it quickly soured within a week. We have 3 iPhone 7+s and 3 iPads of various generations in our home. No problems with our iPhones, at least that we're aware of, and our Nest Cams never dropped offline. Different story for our iPads however. All of them experienced extremely slow speeds or disconnects at one point or another. My wife and I don't use ours very often, which is why I initially thought all was good. However, my son's iPad was rendered practically useless at times due to frequent disconnects. I experimented with a few tweaks here and there, but the disconnects continued. iOS disconnects is a well-documented problem on the Netgear Orbi forum. Rather than endure further frustration waiting for a fix, I decided to return my Orbi before my return window ended.

    I have since picked up a 3-pack Eero system. It's been up and running for about ten days now. No complaints at all. Coverage is solid, speeds are good, and no Nest Cam or iOS disconnects. The app is much cleaner and user-friendly too. Eero recently dropped the price as well. A 3-pack is now $399 (from $499) and a 2-pack is $299. A single Eero is still $199.
     
  12. MCAsan macrumors 601

    MCAsan

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    #12
    Just ordered an Orbi 2 pack from B&H for $349. It will be here on Wednesday. It will replace my network of two Extremes and one Express.
     
  13. MCAsan macrumors 601

    MCAsan

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    #13
    Removed 2 Apple Airport Extremes and replaced with Orbi set. Wifi near 45Mbps in router room using either set of base stations. At the far diagonal of the house in our TV room the Extreme network would only deliver around 12Mbps. With the Orbi Satellite in the same spot the bandwidth is in the 30Mbps+ range. So I am a happy Orbi user. :D
     
  14. convergent macrumors 68030

    convergent

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    #14
    I also just replaced a 2 Airport Extreme setup with a 2 unit Orbi. My problem with the old setup is that as I moved around the house I'd get stuck on the wrong AE and WiFi performance would go to crap. Recycling WiFi on the device would usually fix it, but not always. And performance was never really what I expected. The 2 AEs were connected via a MoCA 2.1 network that consistently delivered better than 600mbps throughput, so I was concerned with going to a mesh setup that shared backhaul with other traffic. Orbi gets around this with a dedicated backhaul network. Now with the Orbi setup I'm consistently getting the speed I expect throughout the house. Just ran a Speedtest on my iPhone 6s and got 6ms ping, 381mbps down, 437mbps up. We have fiber, and this is about what I get on my wire attached Mac.... so Orbi is matching wire attached speeds throughout the house.
     
  15. apolloa thread starter macrumors G3

    apolloa

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    #15
    I have found the Orbi to work better as just an access point, leaving the routing functions to my isp router/ modem. Worked fine so far.
    This weekend though some family are coming to stay so that should add an additional 6 wireless devices at least to the network... let's see how it copes.
     
  16. 8281 macrumors 6502

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    #16
    I don't have a house/property big enough to warrant buying a new setup, but has anyone considered the Ubiquiti routers? I purchased seven for my office and they have been doing great (knock on wood). They require a little more setup, as they are sort of "prosumer" versions of these other options. Their APs all are POE compatible though so you could have a really slick install.
     
  17. belvdr macrumors 603

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    Aug 15, 2005
    #17
    I purchased an EdgeRouter Lite and moved my EA8500 to bridge mode. So far, I've been happy with this setup, except I cannot enable QoS without taking a performance hit. If/when they can offload QoS, that will complete the picture.
     
  18. 8281 macrumors 6502

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    #18
    Interesting, we have their AC routers with a Dell SonicWall and have no performance issues with QoS
     
  19. belvdr macrumors 603

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    Aug 15, 2005
    #19
  20. haruhiko macrumors 601

    haruhiko

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    #20
    Just purchased the Netgear Orbi today. Set up was painless and it automatically downloaded the latest firmware and updated it. All of my Apple devices are connected to it easily with no problems. The connection speed is much increased now in previous deadspots.

    I will post more when I have used it longer.
     
  21. dwfaust, Apr 29, 2017
    Last edited: Apr 29, 2017

    dwfaust macrumors 68040

    dwfaust

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    #21
    I've been looking hard at this, as well. My concern, apart from those reported here and in the Netgear thread is the lack of a guests network option... If I'm going to drop $350 or more on a "whole home" wifi router setup, I don't want it to be lacking what, for me at least, I consider necessary features... will continue to follow this thread and the Netgear support forum, as well.

    UPDATE: Apparently, a firmware update added the guest network option... leaning more toward an imminent purchase.
     
  22. apolloa thread starter macrumors G3

    apolloa

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    #22
    I have not had a single issue with any of my iOS devices on my Orbi.
     
  23. dwfaust macrumors 68040

    dwfaust

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    #23
    Bought it. Installed it. Had issues. Updated firmware. Could not keep any devices connected. Returned it.
     
  24. convergent macrumors 68030

    convergent

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    #24
    Ditto... this was one of the easiest router setups I've done... and its worked flawlessly. We've had 4 different groups of friends and family stay with us over the last month; all of whom had iOS, Android, and Windows machines that used the guest network. Our family is all iOS for mobile devices. No one has had any problems with WiFi. The speed has been excellent and gone are the problems with a device requiring a WiFi recycle to switch to the other access point.

    How long ago did you try it? I've had over a dozen iOS devices in and out of my house and my family is all iOS and we've had zero problems with the Orbi. It is by far the best system I've ever used for ease of setup and speed. I've even replaced my MoCA wired network for media devices with the Orbi's wireless back haul.
     
  25. dwfaust macrumors 68040

    dwfaust

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    #25

    I bought it Saturday morning and fought with it for 2 days... returned it just before closing time yesterday. Back to my multiple Apple router/AP for the time being. May not be the best option available, but at least my devices can get connected and stay connected. Obviously, this is a YMMV situation.
     

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