Cruisers Forum
 


Join CruisersForum Today

Reply
 
Thread Tools Rate Thread Display Modes
Old 02-03-2016, 13:46   #1
Moderator
 
Dockhead's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Cowes (Winter), Baltic (Summer) (the boat!); somewhere in the air (me!)
Boat: Cutter-Rigged Moody 54
Posts: 19,752
WiFi Networking -- N? AC? And Ubiquiti Bullets

I have just purchased a TP-Link AC1200 wifi adapter.

I was absolutely amazed that my connection speed went from a pathetic 1.5mbs down and 200kbs up to about 20mbs both ways, on the marina wifi here in Cowes.

I would never have expected that since the wifi connection should not have been the factor limiting speed. False assumption I see.

I bought this device to have something simple to plug into USB and also to carry in my briefcase while travelling.

But now I'm wondering about my Ubiquiti Bullet -- it only does 2.4ghz, and you have to buy an entirely different one for 5ghz -- no dual band. And none of them will do AC.

I was just going to update the old Bullet (an ancient v 1.0) to Titanium -- I wonder if it even makes any sense?

I suppose it could make sense if long range wifi connections are anyway going to be on 2.4ghz and N -- AC is 5ghz only. Yet I'm here out in the marina getting four bars at 5 mhz on AC, and the antennas are inside the cabin.

Now I'm a bit confused.
__________________

__________________
"Parce que je suis heureux en mer, et peut-Ítre pour sauver mon ame. . . "
Dockhead is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-03-2016, 19:52   #2
Registered User

Join Date: Feb 2015
Posts: 255
Images: 1
Re: WiFi Networking -- N? AC? And Ubiquiti Bullets

What's "AC"?

I used a 2.4ghz bullet for a number of years and about a year ago switched to a Microtik Groove. It's very similar to the bullet, but supports both 2.4 and 5 ghz. You need to switch between them manually, but it does do both. So far so good. I think the bullet is a bit easier to operate for a novice, but they seem to have a pretty high failure rate. I'm hoping the Groove will be better.
__________________

__________________
www.MVTanglewood.com
tanglewood is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-03-2016, 20:54   #3
Registered User

Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: San Francisco, CA
Posts: 30
Re: WiFi Networking -- N? AC? And Ubiquiti Bullets

It sounds like the marina WiFi access point supports a more recent (and faster) network speed than your Ubiquiti Bullet supports. In addition, it is possible that your old WiFi adapter for your computer is slower than your new USB adapter.

WiFi networking data throughput will be the slowest (or possibly slower) than the slowest link in the network chain. So, assuming that the bullet is the slow link, you can think of the whole sequence as similar to pipes with different diameters.

For example:

A. laptop -> bullet (this will run at whichever of these devices is slowest)
B. bullet -> marina wifi (again runs at the slowest of these two devices)

But the data is ultimately going laptop -> bullet -> marina. So whichever link is slowest in that chain will define the end to end throughout.

With regard to "AC", WiFi networking is defined in a number of standards. The most commonly encountered ones (from slowest to fastest) are:
  • 802.11b (2.4GHz)
  • 802.11g (2.4GHz)
  • 802.11n (2.4GHz or 5GHz)
  • 802.11ac (2.4GHz or 5GHz)

With 802.11n and 802.11ac providing the additional variations to provide even higher throughput (e.g. multiple spacial streams, channel bonding).

In general, the 2.4GHz signal provides a longer range than the 5GHz signal. For embedded devices like the Ubiquiti Bullet, manufacturers have not yet developed products that support 802.11ac across the board. There are issues with power requirements, chipset support, and antenna design issues that are lagging deployment of 802.11ac in that kind of device.
__________________
mrichmon is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-03-2016, 04:40   #4
Moderator
 
Dockhead's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Cowes (Winter), Baltic (Summer) (the boat!); somewhere in the air (me!)
Boat: Cutter-Rigged Moody 54
Posts: 19,752
Re: WiFi Networking -- N? AC? And Ubiquiti Bullets

Quote:
Originally Posted by mrichmon View Post
It sounds like the marina WiFi access point supports a more recent (and faster) network speed than your Ubiquiti Bullet supports. In addition, it is possible that your old WiFi adapter for your computer is slower than your new USB adapter.

WiFi networking data throughput will be the slowest (or possibly slower) than the slowest link in the network chain. So, assuming that the bullet is the slow link, you can think of the whole sequence as similar to pipes with different diameters.

For example:

A. laptop -> bullet (this will run at whichever of these devices is slowest)
B. bullet -> marina wifi (again runs at the slowest of these two devices)

But the data is ultimately going laptop -> bullet -> marina. So whichever link is slowest in that chain will define the end to end throughout.

With regard to "AC", WiFi networking is defined in a number of standards. The most commonly encountered ones (from slowest to fastest) are:
  • 802.11b (2.4GHz)
  • 802.11g (2.4GHz)
  • 802.11n (2.4GHz or 5GHz)
  • 802.11ac (2.4GHz or 5GHz)

With 802.11n and 802.11ac providing the additional variations to provide even higher throughput (e.g. multiple spacial streams, channel bonding).

In general, the 2.4GHz signal provides a longer range than the 5GHz signal. For embedded devices like the Ubiquiti Bullet, manufacturers have not yet developed products that support 802.11ac across the board. There are issues with power requirements, chipset support, and antenna design issues that are lagging deployment of 802.11ac in that kind of device.
OK, thanks a lot.

I guess this year I will use the Bullet for N and 2.4GHz, and the TP-Link for 5MHz -- since 5MHz doesn't have the range anyway, and the Bullet doesn't yet do AC. Maybe by next year they will come up with a dual band Bullet.

I still cannot comprehend the speed difference I've experienced between N and AC here. I can only guess that the network is configured to throttle the N connections -- that's really the only possible explanation. There's both free and paid service here, and the free service is throttled.

I will also look into the Microtik Groove.
__________________
"Parce que je suis heureux en mer, et peut-Ítre pour sauver mon ame. . . "
Dockhead is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-03-2016, 05:01   #5
Moderator
 
Dockhead's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Cowes (Winter), Baltic (Summer) (the boat!); somewhere in the air (me!)
Boat: Cutter-Rigged Moody 54
Posts: 19,752
Re: WiFi Networking -- N? AC? And Ubiquiti Bullets

Quote:
Originally Posted by tanglewood View Post
What's "AC"?

I used a 2.4ghz bullet for a number of years and about a year ago switched to a Microtik Groove. It's very similar to the bullet, but supports both 2.4 and 5 ghz. You need to switch between them manually, but it does do both. So far so good. I think the bullet is a bit easier to operate for a novice, but they seem to have a pretty high failure rate. I'm hoping the Groove will be better.
Thanks for the tip.

This actually looks very good:

RouterBoard.com : GrooveA 52HPn

It is dual band. However, it does not do AC -- only N. Also, it is lower power than the Bullet, only 500mW. I'm not sure that the transmit power makes much difference, however.


This company also makes some impressive metal fully waterproof ones, like this:

RouterBoard.com : Metal 5SHPn
__________________
"Parce que je suis heureux en mer, et peut-Ítre pour sauver mon ame. . . "
Dockhead is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-03-2016, 05:02   #6
Moderator
 
Dockhead's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Cowes (Winter), Baltic (Summer) (the boat!); somewhere in the air (me!)
Boat: Cutter-Rigged Moody 54
Posts: 19,752
Re: WiFi Networking -- N? AC? And Ubiquiti Bullets

Quote:
Originally Posted by tanglewood View Post
What's "AC"?

I used a 2.4ghz bullet for a number of years and about a year ago switched to a Microtik Groove. It's very similar to the bullet, but supports both 2.4 and 5 ghz. You need to switch between them manually, but it does do both. So far so good. I think the bullet is a bit easier to operate for a novice, but they seem to have a pretty high failure rate. I'm hoping the Groove will be better.
Thanks for the tip.

This actually looks very good:

RouterBoard.com : GrooveA 52HPn

It is dual band. However, it does not do AC -- only N. Also, it is lower power than the Bullet, only 500mW. I'm not sure that the transmit power makes much difference, however.


This company also makes some impressive metal fully waterproof ones, like this:

RouterBoard.com : Metal 5SHPn
__________________
"Parce que je suis heureux en mer, et peut-Ítre pour sauver mon ame. . . "
Dockhead is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-03-2016, 05:03   #7
Moderator
 
Dockhead's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Cowes (Winter), Baltic (Summer) (the boat!); somewhere in the air (me!)
Boat: Cutter-Rigged Moody 54
Posts: 19,752
Re: WiFi Networking -- N? AC? And Ubiquiti Bullets

Quote:
Originally Posted by tanglewood View Post
What's "AC"?

I used a 2.4ghz bullet for a number of years and about a year ago switched to a Microtik Groove. It's very similar to the bullet, but supports both 2.4 and 5 ghz. You need to switch between them manually, but it does do both. So far so good. I think the bullet is a bit easier to operate for a novice, but they seem to have a pretty high failure rate. I'm hoping the Groove will be better.
Thanks for the tip.

This actually looks very good:

RouterBoard.com : GrooveA 52HPn

It is dual band. However, it does not do AC -- only N. Also, it is lower power than the Bullet, only 500mW. I'm not sure that the transmit power makes much difference, however.


This company also makes some impressive metal fully waterproof ones, like this:

RouterBoard.com : Metal 5SHPn



One thing I hate about my present Bullet is the requirement to change the IP address of the COMPUTER, before you can talk to the router. Ridiculous! I believe that this was changed in subsequent versions; I have a very old original v 1.0 Bullet.
__________________
"Parce que je suis heureux en mer, et peut-Ítre pour sauver mon ame. . . "
Dockhead is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-03-2016, 09:17   #8
Marine Service Provider
 
W32PAMELA's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Wewahitchka, FL
Boat: Westsail 32 - Pamela
Posts: 270
Re: WiFi Networking -- N? AC? And Ubiquiti Bullets

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dockhead View Post
One thing I hate about my present Bullet is the requirement to change the IP address of the COMPUTER, before you can talk to the router. Ridiculous! I believe that this was changed in subsequent versions; I have a very old original v 1.0 Bullet.
It sounds like your router is set as a bridge and that the Bullet is serving DHCP to your whole network. If that is the case then you many want to change the static IP on your router to be in the same subnet as you Bullet gives out then you should be able to access the router anytime you Bullet is online.

The other way to avoid needing to change the IP address on your computer when you want to connect to the router is to set your router up as a DHCP server using a differnet subnet from the Bullet. Plug the Bullet into the router WAN/Internet port and you will be able to access either one at their static IP.

I believe that the real difference in the speed that you experienced is due to using 5ghz rather than being "ac" versus "g". There was probably far less noise on the 5ghz band and far fewer users on the 5ghz ap than on the 2.4ghz ap.

I would consider the Groove 52hpn rather than the Groove A52hpn. The Groove A can be set up as an AP or a Client as opposed to the Groove which can only be used as a Client. The only thing you will use the Groove as is a Client so why not save $20. The Groove can be configured to scan both the 2.4 ghz and 5 ghz band so that you don't need to switch between them automatically. Set up a 5 ghz scan list in the Wireless "channels" tab and add this list name along with "default" in the "Scan List" option in the Wireless interface details window.

If you really want to play with hardware you could get a Netmetal 5 RB922UAGS-5HPacT-NM. These are triple chain 5ghz ac devices with a mini-pcie slot that will let you add a 2.4ghz card. With the appropriate setup you would then have a dual band dual radio client.
__________________
Bob Stewart
W32PAMELA is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-03-2016, 09:44   #9
Moderator
 
Dockhead's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Cowes (Winter), Baltic (Summer) (the boat!); somewhere in the air (me!)
Boat: Cutter-Rigged Moody 54
Posts: 19,752
Re: WiFi Networking -- N? AC? And Ubiquiti Bullets

Quote:
Originally Posted by W32PAMELA View Post
It sounds like your router is set as a bridge and that the Bullet is serving DHCP to your whole network. If that is the case then you many want to change the static IP on your router to be in the same subnet as you Bullet gives out then you should be able to access the router anytime you Bullet is online.

The other way to avoid needing to change the IP address on your computer when you want to connect to the router is to set your router up as a DHCP server using a differnet subnet from the Bullet. Plug the Bullet into the router WAN/Internet port and you will be able to access either one at their static IP.

I believe that the real difference in the speed that you experienced is due to using 5ghz rather than being "ac" versus "g". There was probably far less noise on the 5ghz band and far fewer users on the 5ghz ap than on the 2.4ghz ap.

I would consider the Groove 52hpn rather than the Groove A52hpn. The Groove A can be set up as an AP or a Client as opposed to the Groove which can only be used as a Client. The only thing you will use the Groove as is a Client so why not save $20. The Groove can be configured to scan both the 2.4 ghz and 5 ghz band so that you don't need to switch between them automatically. Set up a 5 ghz scan list in the Wireless "channels" tab and add this list name along with "default" in the "Scan List" option in the Wireless interface details window.

If you really want to play with hardware you could get a Netmetal 5 RB922UAGS-5HPacT-NM. These are triple chain 5ghz ac devices with a mini-pcie slot that will let you add a 2.4ghz card. With the appropriate setup you would then have a dual band dual radio client.
Thanks; very interesting and useful information.


That NetMetal device is really interesting -- I suppose you could put an LTE radio into the mini PCIE express slot, and do mobile telephone data as well as wifi -- very, very cool. Something like this: https://techship.se/products/sierra-...7455-lte-cat6/.
I have long wanted to have a mobile phone router up the mast, and actually pulled a cable and put in a mount for it, but the POE device I had in mind was discontinued.

Hmmmm.
__________________
"Parce que je suis heureux en mer, et peut-Ítre pour sauver mon ame. . . "
Dockhead is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-03-2016, 10:02   #10
Registered User

Join Date: Jan 2015
Location: Victoria BC
Boat: 1980 Hunter 36
Posts: 678
Re: WiFi Networking -- N? AC? And Ubiquiti Bullets

Try updating the firmware in your bullet as well. Free, easy and may enable some new features.
__________________
S/V Gudgeon
www.gudgeonblog.ca
alctel is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-03-2016, 10:07   #11
Registered User

Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: St Michaels, MD
Boat: Cal 46-3, 46' ketch
Posts: 190
Re: WiFi Networking -- N? AC? And Ubiquiti Bullets

I've been lucky to have great wifi on our boat from our YC now that we're not cruising as much these days so I can't offer much help. But we entered the RV world and in addition to all the same marine issues (gain, frequency, easily removable, inside wireless router). Plus, RVs are basically big metal shielded boxes. According inside reception is very much attenuated unless you are lucky enough to be looking at the wifi source through the windshield! There are a lot more RVs than boats big enough to desire wifi so the RV wifi equipment and blogs are more plentiful. I think you would benefit greatly by googling RV wifi options and getting on some of the RV sites modeled after this site. There are several RV wifi books out with a wealth of information including side by side performance comparisons between brands, bands and antennas. Good luck. Bob


Sent from my iPhone using Cruisers Sailing Forum
__________________
W3GAC is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-03-2016, 10:58   #12
Moderator
 
Dockhead's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Cowes (Winter), Baltic (Summer) (the boat!); somewhere in the air (me!)
Boat: Cutter-Rigged Moody 54
Posts: 19,752
Re: WiFi Networking -- N? AC? And Ubiquiti Bullets

Quote:
Originally Posted by W3GAC View Post
I've been lucky to have great wifi on our boat from our YC now that we're not cruising as much these days so I can't offer much help. But we entered the RV world and in addition to all the same marine issues (gain, frequency, easily removable, inside wireless router). Plus, RVs are basically big metal shielded boxes. According inside reception is very much attenuated unless you are lucky enough to be looking at the wifi source through the windshield! There are a lot more RVs than boats big enough to desire wifi so the RV wifi equipment and blogs are more plentiful. I think you would benefit greatly by googling RV wifi options and getting on some of the RV sites modeled after this site. There are several RV wifi books out with a wealth of information including side by side performance comparisons between brands, bands and antennas. Good luck. Bob


Sent from my iPhone using Cruisers Sailing Forum
Hot tip, thanks.


I would add that for years I haven't cared much about wifi, because marina wifi was always so terrible, and mobile phone data seamless and excellent.

But time goes on, and two things have happened:

1. Marina wifi in many places has gotten much, much better than it used to be.

2. We use ever more and more data, so much so that even at 10 euros a gigabyte, there are now many things we like to do which we don't want to pay 10 euros a gig to do, like streaming movies, etc.


So wifi is becoming more and more important and I'm paying attention to it again.
__________________
"Parce que je suis heureux en mer, et peut-Ítre pour sauver mon ame. . . "
Dockhead is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-03-2016, 11:01   #13
Moderator
 
Dockhead's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Cowes (Winter), Baltic (Summer) (the boat!); somewhere in the air (me!)
Boat: Cutter-Rigged Moody 54
Posts: 19,752
Re: WiFi Networking -- N? AC? And Ubiquiti Bullets

Quote:
Originally Posted by alctel View Post
Try updating the firmware in your bullet as well. Free, easy and may enable some new features.
In general good advice, but my Bullet is about 7 years old by now, so End of Life. Time for a new one.

I think I'm going to go for the Routerboard solution which is dual band. I don't know whether the lack of AC is a big drawback or not.

In any case, these are so cheap that there's not much reason to hold on to old equipment.
__________________
"Parce que je suis heureux en mer, et peut-Ítre pour sauver mon ame. . . "
Dockhead is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-03-2016, 12:17   #14
Marine Service Provider
 
W32PAMELA's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Wewahitchka, FL
Boat: Westsail 32 - Pamela
Posts: 270
Re: WiFi Networking -- N? AC? And Ubiquiti Bullets

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dockhead View Post
That NetMetal device is really interesting -- I suppose you could put an LTE radio into the mini PCIE express slot, and do mobile telephone data as well as wifi -- very, very cool. Something like this: https://techship.se/products/sierra-...7455-lte-cat6/.
I have long wanted to have a mobile phone router up the mast, and actually pulled a cable and put in a mount for it, but the POE device I had in mind was discontinued.
You can use the mini-pcie slot for a cell modem. The MC7455 is pricey and hard to find but it is compatible with a major part of the world LTE frequencies. I'm not sure if Mikrotik will currently support LTE on it. I have an MC7354 but I can't use the LTE interface on it with the current firmwares. Mikrotik has announced that LTE will be supported with their version 7 firmware. Everyone would like to get their hands on v7 beta but mikrotik has not set a date yet for release.
__________________
Bob Stewart
W32PAMELA is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-03-2016, 19:15   #15
Moderator
 
Dockhead's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Cowes (Winter), Baltic (Summer) (the boat!); somewhere in the air (me!)
Boat: Cutter-Rigged Moody 54
Posts: 19,752
Re: WiFi Networking -- N? AC? And Ubiquiti Bullets

I've been playing with the new AC adapter. I don't know why Windows doesn't give you access to information about what kind of WiFi connection you have

So I've been using "netsh wlan show interfaces" in a command line.

There is a huge difference between the AC connections I've made here, and N ones.

I don't know why it is, other than maybe beamforming? Or maybe it's just how this particular network is set up.

But in any case, I think I am now reluctant to invest in any outdoor 5GHz carrier class gear which doesn't speak AC.

The bullet format is also maybe not ideal for this, since AC (and N) benefit from MIMO antennae.

So maybe I need to replace my prehistoric v1.0 Bullet with a 2.5 gigaherz Bullet Titanium, for those bands. And then add something like a Rocket with the two stubby antennae, when they start to speak AC. Or the Routerboard NetMetal. I have two positions on the first spreader and two Ethernet cables already pulled, so could run two separate devices.
__________________

__________________
"Parce que je suis heureux en mer, et peut-Ítre pour sauver mon ame. . . "
Dockhead is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
wifi

Thread Tools
Display Modes Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
How can one share WiFi with an Ubiquiti Bullet Zanshin Marine Electronics 1 22-03-2014 10:20
General Info: Mapping facility and social networking for FP philbusby Fountaine Pajot 0 25-05-2013 02:14
Internet Ubiquiti Bullet - Any Good ? Velocir Marine Electronics 93 01-06-2012 07:23



Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -7. The time now is 11:20.


Google+
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Social Knowledge Networks
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.

ShowCase vBulletin Plugins by Drive Thru Online, Inc.