Seven Antennas Are Better Than One

october 10, 2006

Flashy Blue Lights...
Apparently, seven antennas are better than one. In my non-scientific testing, I'm seeing some pretty good performance gains. Sitting in the office where the AP was yields the same performance between the WPN824, WGR614v5 and Airport Extreme Base Station. The real test is in the dining-room. I am not sure how far the dining-room is in feet from the AP, but it has three walls between it and the AP. I used my Linux notebook with an Airlink AWLC4030 card for testing. To move data, I did an rsync of Linux ISOs from my notebook to my storage server, which is connected to the AP via 100Mbit Ethernet. My unofficial testing yielded this: I didn't do much tweaking to the WPN824, mostly because there isn't much to tweak -- this is a consumer-grade AP. I did go through and turn off all the 108Mbit stuff since it only works when the whole network is populated with 108Mbit devices -- and the 108Mbit setting puts the AP into a b/g mixed-mode, which degrades speeds. I set the AP to 54g-only and that was about all the tweaking I did.  The other two APs also were set for 54g only. I am quite impressed by the performance of the WPN824. Lets see how well this thing holds up over time. I am glad that the WPN824 is more than just seven bright blue flashing LEDs.