Wifi mesh systems

Having endured 27mbps broadband for ages, we are about to get full fibre at 625mbps, thanks to the Rural Broadband Scheme. This will tie us in to a minimum 12 month contract with the company putting in the cabling, so we’ll be parting company with BT.

BT’s mesh system (a smarthub and three wifi ‘discs’) has worked seamlessly thus far, but BT will want their kit back when we leave. The new supplier will provide a router, but I’m guessing it will be a basic one.

This Huawei system looks good value at about £100


What do you think? Will it do, or are there better options (without spending a lot more)?


I’ve got an Eero wifi6 mesh thing I’m no longer using that I’ll probably stick up for sale at some point.

But TBH I’ve replaced the 3x Eero mesh units with an Asus RT-AX86U and I’m getting 500mbps download over wifi from my iPads and laptops.

With the Eero I was getting around 300Mbps and the Asus has the same coverage (average 3 bed house)

Thanks. Reading reviews of the Huawei kit I mentioned does throw up a mix of experiences. Some users saying it’s lightning quick, others complaining that it’s the opposite, but that appears to be true of other brands/models too.

TBH, even 300mbps would be at least 10 times what we get now.

Depends on what you want to use the attached stuff for.

I’ve connected my TV, SkyQ, NAS and streamer directly to the router so they get the full download speed for streaming 4k TV or music etc and things like laptops or ipads etc will be fine with 300Mbps wifi.

Also depends on how many people in your house, if there are a few then the MU-MIMO and OFDMA are a massive benefit for concurrent client connections.

I have 3 TPlink M5 discs which seems to work pretty well with 4 phones, 2 ipads, a laptop, a PS4 and 2 roku sticks . I use an old but capable Unifi ERX router which has been brilliant, albeit not the most friendly thing to setup. Wire what you can to the router though

There are six of us in the house. TVs, laptops, phones, Xbox(es), PS4, music and video streaming, countless ‘smart’ bulbs. Frankly, it’s miracle we’ve managed to get by with 27mbps up to now.

The BT smart hub is in the lounge, and most of the kit in there is wired to it.

In a mesh system, is there much advantage in a wired connection from one of the wirelessly connected ‘nodes’ to (say) a TV?

I have a Netgear D6400. Connected by wires are TV, Freesat box, BT Freeview box, Blu-Ray player and a Logitech media player. By wireless, a phone, two laptops and a desktop PC. Works fine.

Wired is always better but I could watch 4k netflix/amazon on the ipad that was connected to the furthest away mesh satellite without any issues.

The advantage of a mesh is that you can place the satellites wherever you want or need them.

The only thing to care about is the wifi stability, having AX5700 may be great but if the radios are shite it’ll still keep dropping and giving sporadic download bandwidth.

Just bear in mind that you only need 8-12mb or so for a 4K video. We have 80mb via fibre and can have 3x Netflix streams easily . Video download (full files/torrents etc) and game updates (steam and origin are stinkers for this) are about the only things that will need much of your bandwidth. Steam will Use the lot if it can

Recently changed to an Asus RT AX86. Very configurable, more so with Merlin fw.
Link speeds over 650 Mbps.

4k needs around 25 Mbps, most systems buffer so will run (adaptive) bursts of high bandwidth to keep the buffer full.

There is no real “constant bandwidth” with streaming 4k

Netflix quote 5mb for 1080p and 15mb for 4K so I misremembered

Yes netflix quote 15 Mbps for 4k but factor for 25 Mbps as there are other factors, netflix quote for a single uncontested stream.

For 4k I just quote a blanket 25 Mbps as that covers most bases

  • Netflix – For standard definition (SD or 480p) Netflix requires at least 3Mbps, for high definition (HD or 1080p) you’ll need 5Mbps and for ultra-high definition (UHD, 4K or 2160p) you’ll need a minimum of 25Mbps* download speed. Netflix also offers content in HDR, with the speed required the same as it is for 4K
  • Amazon Prime – For standard definition (SD or 480p) Amazon Prime requires just 1Mbps, for high definition (HD or 1080p) you’ll need 5Mbps and for ultra-high definition (UHD, 4K or 2160p) you’ll need a minimum of 25Mbps* download speed. Amazon Prime also offers content in HDR, with the speed required the same as it is for 4K. Prime Video will serve the highest quality streaming experience possible based on the bandwidth speed available.
  • NOW TV – It only streams in standard definition and low-end (720p) high definition. NOW TV only states that you need a minimum of 2.5Mbps to use. This probably applies to the 720p (not true HD) streams it offers. For 3G or 4G devices the minimum speed needed is 450Kbps.
  • Disney+ – Disney’s exclusive streaming service demands a minimum of 5Mbps* for high definition (HD, 1080p) content, and 25Mbps* for 4K UHD streaming
  • Apple TV+ – Apple’s own streaming service is accessible via the Apple TV app, available on iPhones, Smart TVs and desktop applications for Mac or PC. Apple TV+ features exclusive Apple-made TV and movies, and is one of the most demanding out there. It has been praised for its exceptional image quality, but that comes at the cost of up to 41Mbps required for 4K UHD content, with 25Mbps* recommended as the minimum. The service scales down depending on the speed you have available. Anything 8Mbps or better and you will be able to watch without problems
  • YouTube – For standard definition (SD 360p) YouTube requires at least 0.7Mbps, for higher-quality standard definition (SD 480p) you’ll need at least 1.1 Mbps. For high definition (HD 720p) you will need 2.5Mbps, for higher-quality high definition (HD 1080p), you will need 5Mbps, and for ultra-high definition (UHD, 4K or 2160p) you’ll need a minimum speed of 20Mbps*.

Will BT really want it back? Just don’t give it to them, or just send them the router!

Anyway any system is great in one house and rubbish in the next. I have only been happy with my wi-fi since I got a couple of Unifi access points in the loft. Not having to try to go through the thick walls in my extended terraced place has made everything much better. Wi-fi is now as stable as wired, and better than the home plugs I used to use.

Most mesh systems are meant to work ok, but I would be careful of multiple wireless hops. A wired mesh, as I have, makes a lot more sense to me. But it might work perfectly for you.

Don’t even know what the title of the thread means.
HTH :+1:

It’s where you drape a big, metal net over your house to improve internets


Yes.And better interwebs means quicker access to porn.

Important stuff.

Man, imagine how much easier physics / computer science teachers have it now. “But why do we have to learn this?” “Because it’ll mean you can improve the quality of your grumble time.”


In my day, computer science was a ZX81. The ability to switch it on was a secret known only to a select few. People were burned at the stake for anything beyond that.

Our Sonos setup uses its own mesh network.
One of the units has to be lan connected.
Range is very good. Sometimes have them in the garden a fair distance away - no issues.
Very stable.

For the house a central WiFi router in under the stairs cupboard, is adequate.

Garage and listening room over the garage are too remote / through insulated external walls, so second slave router required.
Thankfully builder saw fit to wire in a cat6e phone line to lounge and room over the garage, which I re-terminated to lan sockets.
Bit of IP address jiggery on the master router. IP, DCHP, firewall, bridge mode, SIP settings changes on the slave router and it works like a charm.

I have a few slave routers to choose from.
Sky one is rubbish as a slave (it was okay when on the sky broadband as master).
EE is pretty good, very easy to configure, and Talktalk is also pretty good range wise.

We got a wi-fi extender for the outbuilding that serves the garden all the way down to the Orangery/greenhouse, we often sit there in the winter (as long as the sun is out).
Helps living with fibre to doorstep, so fast speeds available, but otherwise rurally - no other Wifi around competing to speak of.

I’ve heard good things of the BT mesh discs, but I like messing about…