Part 2: Choosing Bandwidth, Access Points and Enclosures

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Bandwidth and your ISP

Bandwidth requirements

CloudTrax requires one (or more) incoming Internet connections to feed the network. If you are not using an existing office LAN, this will usually this will be a DSL, cable or LAN connection.

When choosing an Internet service provider (ISP), consider what you'll need for bandwidth—both download and upload. Your needs will vary depending on the type of network, how many simultaneous users you have, and the type of network activity from users.

We've included a few common online activities and the minimum bandwidth required for each of them on the right. The highest demand for bandwidth comes from streaming video services such as Netflix and YouTube, video chat services such as Skype and FaceTime, and automatic backup and file syncing systems such as Dropbox.

Just a few users sharing files or streaming video can quickly use up all available bandwidth. CloudTrax helps manage this with per-user bandwidth limits and the ability to block individual users.

Even with the management capability of CloudTrax, the more bandwidth you have available on your network, the better the experience will be for the network users.

Choosing the right access points and enclosures

CloudTrax supports the OM and MR Series of modular access points (or nodes) and enclosures. Because the system is modular, you can choose the node that is optimized for your wireless demands, then choose the enclosure that best fits your environment.

Access Points

There are currently four models that are built to meet specific needs and excel in very different environments.

ModelOM2POM2P-HSOM5P-ACMR1750
Summary External antenna, great value High speed, long range Higher speed, dual-band Highest speed, dual band
Speed (Max) 150 Mbps 300 Mbps 300+867 Mbps 450+1300 Mbps
Power 23 dBm 23 dBm 19 dBm 23 dBm
Antenna Single External Dual Internal Four Internal Six Internal
PoE Option Passive 802.3af or passive 802.3af or passive 802.3af only
Compatible enclosures Outdoor, Wall Plug All Enclosures All Enclosures  All Enclosures

The OM5P-AC excels in dense, noisy, high-demand environments such as hotels, dorm rooms, care facilities, apartments and food and beverage establishments. As a dual-band 802.11ac model, it operates in the 5 Ghz band in addition to 2.4, so it is better in noisy environments. This unit can handle the highest throughput and the most simultaneous users in the smaller OM Series form factor. This is recommended as the best performing unit in most situations where mesh or long-range coverage is not required. It includes passive and standard 802.3af PoE ports, so it can run with our line of injectors or with standard PoE switches.

The OM2P-HS performs well in the same environments as the OM5P-AN, but as a 2.4 GHz-only device, performs better when there is less interference from other devices. With dual antennas and 23 dBm flat power, this unit can handle high throughput and the most simultaneous users. This is recommended when users need a high combination of range and performance, but don't need a dual-band device. It includes passive and standard 802.3af PoE ports, so it can run with our line of injectors or with standard PoE switches.

The OM2P, with an external antenna connector, makes an ideal solution for outdoor areas where  range is desired. This model can use third-party antennas.

The OM5P is a 5 GHz only model. The 5 GHz band is less congested than 2.4 GHz, so the OM5P is ideal for offloading 5 GHz-capable clients to the faster 5 GHz band, leaving 2.4 GHz for legacy clients. In most situations, you will want to pair this access point with an OM2P, OM2P-HS or OM5P-AN, but some users deploy these exclusively for machine-to-machine networks or other specific use cases.

The MR1750 is our highest performance model, offering 802.11ac hardware, 3x3 MIMO 450 + 1300 Mbps rated radio speed, good range and excellent meshing capabilities. A future firmware upgrade will unlock 802.11ac performance. 

OM Series Enclosures

Enclosures allows you to place access points exactly where they are needed and minimize theft and tampering. They are designed to work seamlessly with OM Series access points. These models are available:

 


Next: Placing Nodes and Scaling the Network

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Comments

  • Avatar
    Aaron Delia

    Hi is the OM2P-HS omni directional or bi directional? i.e. i see it is between 400 to 600 ft range is this the direction in front where it is facing or around the antenna so around 300ft around it ?

  • Avatar
    Ryan Detwiller

    @Aaron - it's omnidirectional, so it should have that range (+/-) in every direction.

  • Avatar
    Rob Pelletier

    Maybe I'm missing something: if I plan to use Ethernet (and POE) for all APs in my mesh network, would I even need a gateway? I can't even see a gateway in the product listing: is a gateway just another AP, used in a specific way? Will I miss anything (in terms of functionality) by Ethernet wiring all my APs? I have to run power to them anyway - why not POE?

  • Avatar
    Ryan Detwiller

    @Rob - A "Gateway" is simply an access point that is connected via ethernet. The hardware is identical - the state simply changes between gateway and repeater when the access point has an ethernet connection or not.

  • Avatar
    Luke Rodriguez

    I'm really a fan of my engenius outdoor access point, is there a way for me to use this with cloudtrax? I don't mind buying a license for it, your hardware is extremely reasonable and I can't wait to try it. But I have existing networks would like to manage. Can you help ?

  • Avatar
    Bryan Patterson

    @ Luke - Sorry but Cloudtrax is only compatible with Open-Mesh access points.

  • Avatar
    Jason

    Can 2 MR1750 be used in a house and will they allow roaming between AP's?

  • Avatar
    Bryan Patterson

    @ Jason- Yes you can use 2 or more of any of our models and you'll be able to roam between all of the APs.

  • Avatar
    Jeremy Goldy

    Will the OM5P-AN and OM2P-HS Mesh ok in a mixed environment?

  • Avatar
    Bryan Patterson

    Yes, the OM5P-AN and the OM2P-HS will mesh together over 2.4GHz. You usually want the device with the stronger radio to be the gateway so the OM2P-HS would be the better gateway there.

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