By Paisal Chuenprasaeng
A NEW and thoroughly modern modular tri-band Wi-Fi system, Linksys Velop Intelligent Mesh WiFi System is very easy to set up and guarantees strong Wi-Fi signal throughout your home.
The mesh system uses a node to function as a router to beam a strong wireless signal around a 185-square-metre area. If you have more space than that, you simply add more nodes to cover the entire house though the radius of each node must intersect with another node – the second node with the router node and the third node with the second node, for example.
You don’t need LAN or any knowledge of technology to set up the system, just a wall plug for each node and your mobile phone and the Linksys app.
Using the Linksys app, setting up Velop Intelligent Mesh Wi-Fi system is a piece of cake. You can buy more nodes to add if the 3-pack Velop system doesn’t provide enough signal coverage for the entire house.
Three packages are available – one-node pack, two-node pack and three-node packs, depending on the size of your house. For example, if you live in a condominium room, you buy the one-node pack. But if you live in a two-floor townhouse, you would be better opting for the two-node pack.
Each node is designed in such a way as to look like a compact speaker with a status LED on top. The nodes are small, measuring just 7.8 cm x 7.8 cm x 18.5 cm and look elegant placed on a shelf or desk. The white model I tested looked really cool with the blue LED status light when the system was online.
And each node has two auto-sensing Gigabit Ethernet ports hidden under it and a slot behind it for stowing cable.
Each Velop node uses Tri-band aC2200 with MU-MIMO technology. It operates with 2.4GHz + 5GHz + 5 GHz bands providing bandwidths of 400 + 867 + 867 Mbps respectively.
Linksys Velop Intelligent Mesh WiFi System is equipped with several technologies to make sure the Wi-Fi connection remains smooth with strong throughput and fast Internet connection speed, though that will of course depend on the speed of your Internet subscription.
Each Velop node is equipped with a powerful quad-core ARM Cortex-A7 processor that supports multiple, simultaneous activities across all its wired and wireless interfaces. Moreover, each node has 4GB of flash and 512MB of DDR3 RAM to provide more than enough resources to host a large variety of features and functionality, and to execute all its tasks efficiently and quickly.
The Velop system also supports MU-MIMO (multi-user multiple-input and multiple-output). The Velop system transmits to two MU-MIMO-capable clients simultaneously. This increased efficiency improves the Wi-Fi experience for all 5GHz clients.
The Velop system supports transmit beam-forming to deliver a better network range and faster Wi-Fi speeds in the home. This technology precisely adjusts, steers and monitors the direction and shape of Wi-Fi signals for better performance with any wireless device.
A nice feature that avoids Wi-Fi congestion in your home is Velop’s cross-channel solution. Normally, access points (routers, range extenders, etc.) and client devices (laptops, smartphones, etc) communicate on the same channel. But channel congestion and a busy collision domain can slow down Wi-Fi performance. Each Velop node connects to a downstream node on a different channel, reducing Wi-Fi collision and delivering more reliable Wi-Fi performance.
The beauty of the Velop system is that it provides seamless roaming. When you deploy two or more Velop nodes, they will communicate with each other to form a single, unified wireless network. No matter where you are in your home, you can move freely between each node’s coverage area and maintain a stable, uninterrupted connection.
The Velop system also uses Intelligent Wi-Fi Mesh Network to ensure the connection will remain as strong as possible. The nodes can connect to each other over wired or wireless links, and will choose the best path to route data between a client and the internet. If a node loses connection to another node, the remaining nodes will self-heal and re-establish internet connection through other nodes in the network.
Spotfinder technology recommends the best placement to reduce latency, maximise throughput, and improve range and signal strength.
I tested the Linksys Velop three-node system on True Online's True Super Fibre 50/20 Mbps package and was impressed by the fast Wi-Fi speed throughout the house.
The set-up was a breeze too thanks to the app. First, I connected a LAN cable from True Online router/modem to a LAN port under the first node.
Then, the app guided me to connect to the Wi-Fi name of the node with the password printed under the node. The rest of the connection was done automatically. I then set the Wi-Fi router and password to be the same as those on my previous router so that all clients, my notebook computers and mobile phones, could reconnect in a blink without any hassle. The app then guided me to add the second node and third node – one at a time – without any trouble.
To add the second node, I simply plugged its power adapter into the wall plug and tapped a button on the app and the rest was done automatically. Likewise with the third node. I placed the second and third nodes in bedrooms on the second floor of my two-storey townhouse.
The test found that a Sony Android 4K TV could stream from YouTube and Netflix smoothly without a network bottleneck.
The Wi-Fi signals in bedrooms on the second floor were very strong.
Using Apple TV 4K box to stream movies from Netflix on the second floor was smooth. Likewise, I used an Android box to watch iflix movies on the second floor smoothly.
The Linksys app also comes with Speed Check function. I used it to measure the Internet connection speed and it reported that my download speed was 54 Mbps and upload speed 23 Mbps.
Linksys Velop Intelligent Mesh WiFi System's one-node pack retails for Bt7,990, two-node pack Bt12,990 and three-node pack Bt17,990.
>> Wi-Fi Technology: Tri-Band AC2200 (867 + 867 + 400 Mbps) with MU-MIMO and 256 QAM
>> Network Standards: 802.11b, 802.11a, 802.11g, 802.11n, 802.11ac
>> Wi-Fi Bands: Simultaneous Tri-Band (2.4Ghz + 5GHz + 5GHz)
>> Number of Ethernet Ports: 2x WAN/LAN auto-sensing Gigabit Ethernet ports
>> Antennas: 6x internal antennas and high-powered amplifiers
>> Processor: 716 MHz Quad Core Memory: 4 GB Flash and 512 MB RAM
>> Wireless Encryption: WPA2 personal
>> Security Features: WPA2 personal