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Old 06-22-2021, 11:07 AM   #1
shovenose
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Default Favorite Consumer/Small Biz Grade Networking Equipment

Curious what y'all use/like.

I had great luck with TP-Link's metal-cased unmanaged switches, managed switches, and their nicer WiFi adapters although for those I always use the chipset's drives not the TP-Link provided drivers. Overall TP-Link's hardware is great and I haven't had any failures yet *knock on wood* although their software can be iffy - for example my T2600G-28TS has 192.168.0.1 as the default web UI IP which is dumb as heck for a managed switch.

For routers I like Ubiquiti EdgeRouters. For APs the Unifi stuff is incredible. Unfortunately the Unifi routing stuff kinda sucks IMO. Don't get me started on Unifi Video being killed in favor the Unifi Protect... although now I just use my Unifi cams in Standalone RTSP mode with Blue Iris. It's better anyway - just wish the app wasn't so ugly.

Last resort is Netgear. Have had decent luck with it. Absolutely hate Asus routers/networking equipment. It's all trash, no matter how good the PCMag reviewers say it is.
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Old 06-22-2021, 11:18 AM   #2
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Default Re: Favorite Consumer/Small Biz Grade Networking Equipment

i'll second that, i have the 5110 long-range wifi client and the build quality is really good.
support is good for firmware upgrades too.

i need to get myself an 8port metal switch soon too.
is it the TL-SG108s??
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Old 06-22-2021, 11:26 AM   #3
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Default Re: Favorite Consumer/Small Biz Grade Networking Equipment

Quote:
Originally Posted by stj View Post
i'll second that, i have the 5110 long-range wifi client and the build quality is really good.
support is good for firmware upgrades too.

i need to get myself an 8port metal switch soon too.
is it the TL-SG108s??

Yes, those switches are good, I have many in service. I wrote this article on my now-abandoned blog years ago: http://www.michaelstechtips.com/thre...link-tl-sg108/ don't judge me lol it was forever ago. still brings me in like 30/mo in amazon affiliate links tho. lol. althought as much as i complained about mediocre caps in that post not a single one has died.

Last edited by shovenose; 06-22-2021 at 11:30 AM..
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Old 06-23-2021, 05:32 AM   #4
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Default Re: Favorite Consumer/Small Biz Grade Networking Equipment

Currently my home setup is:

2x 3Com gigabit unmanaged 24 port switches. $30 a pop on eBay, Topcat uses a few of them too with similarly good results.

Netgear Nighthawk R7000. Mine was a $25 salvation army score, but I later found one at a goodwill outlet for about $1.50 (sold per pound!) which I traded to Topcat (no complaints?). Funny enough, these are still sold new for $160 a hit...

EtherWAN-EX17162 10/100 16 port managed POE switch (with two gigabit uplink ports). Cheapest POE switch/multiport injector solution I could find (eBay, $50). Used for a few security cameras. It works... nothing much to say either way. The cameras do seem to lock up semi-frequently though... but that's not what this thread is about.

Other than the router, a lot of it is beyond "small biz grade"... but I got it pretty cheap, and the switches are cheap enough that if one was worried about failures, it'd be trivial to buy a second used unit for such. Which is why I went that route... best bang for buck!
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Old 06-23-2021, 09:44 AM   #5
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Default Re: Favorite Consumer/Small Biz Grade Networking Equipment

Quote:
Originally Posted by ratdude747 View Post
Currently my home setup is:

2x 3Com gigabit unmanaged 24 port switches. $30 a pop on eBay, Topcat uses a few of them too with similarly good results.

Netgear Nighthawk R7000. Mine was a $25 salvation army score, but I later found one at a goodwill outlet for about $1.50 (sold per pound!) which I traded to Topcat (no complaints?). Funny enough, these are still sold new for $160 a hit...

EtherWAN-EX17162 10/100 16 port managed POE switch (with two gigabit uplink ports). Cheapest POE switch/multiport injector solution I could find (eBay, $50). Used for a few security cameras. It works... nothing much to say either way. The cameras do seem to lock up semi-frequently though... but that's not what this thread is about.

Other than the router, a lot of it is beyond "small biz grade"... but I got it pretty cheap, and the switches are cheap enough that if one was worried about failures, it'd be trivial to buy a second used unit for such. Which is why I went that route... best bang for buck!

Ha, R7000, I still have one of those around here somewhere. Used it as my primary router for a long, long time, before I used an Asus for a while (eww) and then the EdgeRouters. Plenty good for most people and surprisingly stable for consumer grade. Got it for free. Perhaps I should throw it on eBay if I can find it. Although a spare good router is always handy.
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Old 06-25-2021, 05:08 AM   #6
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Default Re: Favorite Consumer/Small Biz Grade Networking Equipment

unmanaged switches I had the best luck with just about anything from Netgear, D-Link and TP-Link (where ever there was a deal on) in a metal box. Those survived the longest. Had a D-Link in a plastic box and I found myself one Sunday recapping it to get my network going again.
The best working router was long time ago a Cisco small biz router. That held up the best from all of them. It moved to various locations and eventually only got upgraded, because of it's age.
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Old 06-25-2021, 11:39 AM   #7
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Default Re: Favorite Consumer/Small Biz Grade Networking Equipment

Mikrotik. More options than UBNT and 30-40% cheaper than UBNT.
The only real issue with Mikrotiks is the ugliness of the interface and the fact that it requires some time to get used to thinking in Mikrotik terms. Although, they have a number of similarities with Cisco.
Zyxel switches are good. I not only avoid TPLink-s, but also don't particularly like them. Most of the TPLink line is purely SOHO and although they work, functions and features are much more limited than similarly priced Mikrotik. Asus networking equipment....garbage...If you even consider Asus a networking equipment brand.
For about 200$ you can buy Mikrotik that you can even use as a backbone router for a medium sized firm. CAPSMAN is not very pretty, but works. Mikrotik AC AP-s with 2x1Gbps ports and true POE are about 60$. So, for less than 100$ you can even create Hotspot and equip entire small hotel with wi-fi.
Linksys - had some decent pieces, but I don't have a high opinion of them. Because I've seen some terrible Linksys devices as well. Honestly, I would rather install ZyXEL than Linksys or TPLink.
Quote:
Originally Posted by CapLeaker View Post
unmanaged switches I had the best luck with just about anything from Netgear, D-Link and TP-Link (where ever there was a deal on) in a metal box. Those survived the longest. Had a D-Link in a plastic box and I found myself one Sunday recapping it to get my network going again.
The best working router was long time ago a Cisco small biz router. That held up the best from all of them. It moved to various locations and eventually only got upgraded, because of it's age.
DLinks are one of the most terrible devices in existence. Below even TPLinks. I've seen multiple DLink routers and switches that constantly overheated or the software wasn't particularly great and required constant restarts, because the software was constantly locking up. While TPLinks are plain and simple devices, not great, but work for home Wi-Fi and if you are not to capricious, DLinks are garbage and often don't work the way it is expected from them to work from the moment they come out of the box.
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Last edited by televizora; 06-25-2021 at 11:49 AM..
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Old 06-26-2021, 10:59 AM   #8
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Default Re: Favorite Consumer/Small Biz Grade Networking Equipment

Quote:
Originally Posted by televizora View Post
Mikrotik. More options than UBNT and 30-40% cheaper than UBNT.
The only real issue with Mikrotiks is the ugliness of the interface and the fact that it requires some time to get used to thinking in Mikrotik terms. Although, they have a number of similarities with Cisco.
Zyxel switches are good. I not only avoid TPLink-s, but also don't particularly like them. Most of the TPLink line is purely SOHO and although they work, functions and features are much more limited than similarly priced Mikrotik. Asus networking equipment....garbage...If you even consider Asus a networking equipment brand.
For about 200$ you can buy Mikrotik that you can even use as a backbone router for a medium sized firm. CAPSMAN is not very pretty, but works. Mikrotik AC AP-s with 2x1Gbps ports and true POE are about 60$. So, for less than 100$ you can even create Hotspot and equip entire small hotel with wi-fi.
Linksys - had some decent pieces, but I don't have a high opinion of them. Because I've seen some terrible Linksys devices as well. Honestly, I would rather install ZyXEL than Linksys or TPLink.

DLinks are one of the most terrible devices in existence. Below even TPLinks. I've seen multiple DLink routers and switches that constantly overheated or the software wasn't particularly great and required constant restarts, because the software was constantly locking up. While TPLinks are plain and simple devices, not great, but work for home Wi-Fi and if you are not to capricious, DLinks are garbage and often don't work the way it is expected from them to work from the moment they come out of the box.

Yeah Ubiquiti vs Mikrotik is like Ford vs Chevy LOL. I've played with Mikrotik and it's one of those things... It's what you're used to.
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