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 access points and enclosure along with the A Series of access points. The OM and MR Series were built as a modular system, so you can choose the node optimized for your wireless demands, then choose the enclsoure that best fits your environment. The A Series takes our modular approach to WiFi one step further: the A Series can be deployed anywhere outside or in and comes with a flexible universal installation kit that includes what you need for each mounting option (no enclosures needed). 

Access Points

There are currently six models that are built to meet specific needs and excel in very different environments. Each model is built for a different goal, so it's difficult to suggest which one is best for your particular use.

Model OM2P OM2P-HS OM5P-AC MR1750 A40 A60
Speed (Max) 150 Mbps 300 Mbps 300+867 Mbps 450+1300 Mbps  300+867 Mbps 450+1300 Mbps
Antenna Single External Dual Internal Four Internal Six Internal  Four Internal  Six Internal
Band 2.4 GHz n 2.4 GHz n 2.4 GHz + 5 GHz ac 2.4 GHz + 5 GHz ac  2.4 GHz + 5 GHz ac  2.4 GHz + 5 GHz ac
PoE Option Passive 802.3af or passive 802.3af or passive 802.3af only  802.3af only  802.3af only
Compatible enclosures Outdoor, Wall Plug All OM Enclosures All OM Enclosures  All MR Enclosures  No enclosures needed  No enclosures needed

Summary

  • Best overall performance: MR1750 or A60
  • Small space, high throughput: OM5P-AC or A40
  • Lowest cost: OM2P

 A40 or A60?

The A Series introduces a new form factor and will be used as the platform for additional models in the future. The A60 and A40 are both 802.11ac and virtually identical to each other: the A40 is a 2x2 radio while the A60 is 3x3.

A60 or MR1750?

The A60 can be compared directly to the MR1750. Both offer 802.11ac hardware, 3x3 MIMO 450 + 1300 Mbps rated radio speed, good range and excellent meshing capabilities. With enhanced radio and antenna design for improved receive sensitivity, the A60 gets similar range and performance to the MR1750 while drawing less power. The A60 adds a second gigabit Ethernet port and a USB port for future expandability. It also includes a universal housing kit so it can be mounted on Ethernet and junction boxes, and can be mounted outdoors without the need for an enclosure.

OM5P-AC or A40?

The OM5P-AC is deal for covering a single room in a hotel room, dorm, care facility or small office. It can be used with the OM Series enclosures. The A40 also offers a 2x2 radio but adds significant range and a universal housing—no enclosures needed.

OM2P or OM2P-HS?

The OM2P-HS offers great performance on the 2.4 GHz band only, and can be used with a 802.3af PoE switch, or 18-24v passive PoE. It continues to be a very popular model for cloud-managed WiFi in non-congested environments.

The OM2P works well when you don't need as much speed or you need to use an external antenna. This model supports passive 12-24v PoE. With the included antenna it has approximately the same range as the OM2P-HS.

 

OM Series Enclosures

OM Series enclosures allow you to place OM 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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