Table of Contents - Article Hierarchy
- ASUS Mesh WiFi options
- 1. AiMesh
- Features and Performance
- Supported AiMesh Routers
- How to setup AiMesh Network
- 2. Lyra
- Lyra AC2200
- Lyra Trio AC1750
Our society has always been driven by the need for greater internet speeds and range. For that reason, today, WiFi technology particularly routers have reached a whole new level. Various tech giants are in constant commitment to incorporate new and enhanced technologies into routers bringing about cool devices and systems in the market.
One of the greatest leaps in WiFi technology witnessed today is Mesh Networks and range extenders. A Mesh Network is a coordinated system of interconnected routers or nodes providing dynamic connectivity. Range extenders, on the other hand, are devices added to your existing network to amplify the signal and increase coverage. Both options have a common goal of increasing range.
Mesh Networks have shown more market impact than range extenders. Reason being the functionality and design of these systems is out of this world. From the TENDA NOVA MW6, NETGEAR Orbi to GOOGLE WiFi and many more. Range extenders may also be a great solution depending on your needs. Get a low down on which of these options is best here.
Also Read: Mesh Networks vs Traditional WiFi Routers
In this article, we will take a look at two options recently unveiled by ASUS for a Mesh Network solution. ASUS brings you AiMesh and Lyra systems. What do these two options bring to the table? We will answer that question as well as delve on a quick guide on how to setup AiMesh and Lyra.
ASUS Mesh WiFi options
ASUS gives its customers two options for a Mesh Network:
When it comes to Mesh Networks, ASUS has gone a step further. This means that you will not have to replace your traditional router in order to switch to a Mesh Network. Although your existing router has to be one of the ASUS models that is AiMesh enabled.
With this setup, you can easily scale up your network without changing any existing router. The fun fact is that you can integrate different router models. This makes it seamless to add new nodes anytime when usage needs grow.
AiMesh incorporates the features of any traditional router as well as all the features of any Mesh Network. Your connected devices are automatically switched between networks when roaming. Your device will always be connected to the strongest signal. Despite having different router models, the whole network will have the same SSID and password.
The Firmware update for various ASUS router models is what comes incorporated with the AiMesh feature. If you have one of these routers, the good news is you can upgrade to a Mesh Network without replacing it.
Features and Performance
Every ASUS router packs exemplary features and performance which every seasoned gamer can attest. Now with the AiMesh setup, all these features are bundled up to produce a deserving Mesh Network. Test results for these routers give an average throughput of 400Mbps given normal network constraints. The maximum throughput for RT-AC86U is 2900Mbps.
- Compatible with different router models. You don’t have to get rid of your traditional stand-alone router as long as it is AiMesh enabled.
- High WiFi speeds for gaming and 4K streaming.
- Mobile and PC setup
- AiMesh incorporates Smart technology to ensure better performance such as automatic switching between networks.
- In case an intermediate node fails, a connection will be made automatically to the next available node. You do not have to worry about downtime at all.
- AiProtection features powered by Trend Micro ensures your whole network, connected devices and sensitive information is protected.
- The network can be centrally controlled from the ASUS Router app.
- A rich parental control feature. Restrict which sites your kids should not visit, schedule block time which sets when family members can or cannot use the WiFi, block specific types of content and monitor their activity online.
Supported AiMesh Routers
Here are some of the ASUS routers compatible with AiMesh feature:
- RT-AC5300: Features a tremendous throughput of up to 5334Mbps. More suited for high-speed gaming. Uses 4×4 MU-MIMO and operates on three bandwidth frequencies (Dual 5GHz and single 2.4GHz) 802.11ac
- Blue Cave: This stylish router operates on dual-band frequencies (5GHz, 2GHz) and 4×4 MU-MIMO antennas. Can achieve a throughput of up to 2600Mbps. Compatible with Amazon Alexa. 802.11ac.
- RT-AC3100: Dual band technology (5GHz, 2.4GHz) Wide coverage. Throughput of up to 2100Mbps.
- RT-AC68U: Dual-band, 3×3 MIMO. Maximum throughput of 1900Mbps.
- RT-AC86U: 802.11ac standard. Throughput of up to 2917Mbps.
- RT-AC88U: Operates on a dual-band WiFi connection (2.4GHz and 5GHz) Uses 2×2 MIMO.
- ROG Rapture GT-AX11000: Features the next generation 802.11ax standard for superb connectivity. Operates on tri-band frequencies and 4×4 MIMO.
How to setup AiMesh Network
Assuming that you have a standalone ASUS router that is AiMesh enabled, I will go ahead to show you how to add more routers in order to create a Mesh Network. The process is pretty straight forward. You can opt to choose the new router as the primary node or just stick with the old router. You can make this choice depending on which router is more powerful.
During setup, place the routers closely and plugged into the power supply. Check the LED lights on each router to ensure everything is okay. The WAN and 2.4GHz/5GHz LED lights should be on. Configuring new nodes to your network can either be done via a web portal or using the ASUS Router app. This tutorial uses the web portal. Let’s get into it.
Phase 1: Firmware update
Step 1: Frist off you should begin by connecting to the routers one at a time using your PC. Ethernet is more preferred so that you don’t connect to other networks. You can either do that wirelessly by connecting to its hotspot or making a wired connection using Ethernet cable. Make sure the router you are currently trying to connect to have got access to the internet whether it’s via modem or internet cable. In case you don’t have an Ethernet cable make sure you connect wirelessly to the right hotspot.
Step 2: Once you are connected, we are going to update the firmware on each router so as to make sure the AiMesh feature is present and up to date. Do so by opening a new tab in your browser and type in router.asus.com.
Step 3: Login to your ASUS account. Once you are in the web interface, select the “administration” option on the left side menu. On the right, you should see various tabs. Tap on the “Firmware update” tab. Then proceed by clicking the “check” button and commence the update by clicking the “Firmware update” button. Wait for the download to complete. You should see the AiMesh icon appear in case your router did not have this feature enabled previously.
Step 4: After the update, you need to restore the extending node to its default factory setting options. This is in case it was the old router and you had done a few settings of your own. Select the “administration” option again. On the right, tap on the “restore” tab then click on the “restore” button. It will take a short while to complete.
Phase 2: Router dedication
In this phase, you are going to decide which router will be the primary node and the other router to be the extending node. Here is how we assign them:
Assigning the primary node
Step 1: First, connect to the primary router of your choice which should be connected to the internet. Once again go to router.asus.com and select the “administration” option on the left side menu.
Step 2: When the administration page appears, tap on the “Operation mode” tab. You will see various modes which your router can operate on. Since this is your primary router, make sure the “AiMesh Router mode” is selected.
Step 3: If it is already selected, no need to do anything. If you have made the changes press the “save” button and log out.
Assigning the extending node(s)
Step 1: Start by connecting your internet cable or modem to the extending node of your choice. Then connect your PC as you did previously. Open the web interface once again and log in to your ASUS account.
Step 2: Select the “administration” option on the left side menu. Click the “Operation Mode” tab. This time choose the “AiMesh Node” option. This means that the current node will operate as an extending node.
Step 3: Press the “save” button and log out. Keep this node plugged into the power supply. Repeat this procedure for all the other routers you want to extend your network with.
Phase 3: Establishing a connection
When you are done setting the operation mode for each router, what remains is establishing a connection between them. Make sure they are still close together do not spread them yet. Here is how you connect AiMesh routers:
Step 1: Connect your PC and modem back to your primary node. Access the web interface as we previously did.
Step 2: On the left side menu, select the “Network map” option. You should now be able to see the AiMesh icon near the bottom of the page. Right under the icon, you will see the number of connected AiMesh nodes. In your case, you should see a ‘0’ since none is connected. Tap on the icon.
Step 3: On the utmost right of the page, you will see a “Search” button which enables the primary node to discover available extending nodes. Go ahead and click on it. You should see the model name for the extending node that you had configured earlier. You should see more results if you had set up more extending nodes.
Step 4: Select the extending node you want to add to your network. You will be prompted whether to add the selected node or not. Proceed by clicking on the “apply” button. A confirmation popup will be displayed when the connection is successfully made. Just tap on the ok button.
If you are looking for a sleek design, this is it. ASUS Lyra features look-alike nodes just like other Mesh Networks to have hit the market. Such setups have been labeled as the next generation gadgets for home WiFi. Unlike range extenders, you experience similar performance at each node. ASUS Lyra has two product options for this:
- Lyra AC2200
- Lyra Trio AC1750
This product came earlier than the Lyra Trio. Each node is disk-shaped and very lightweight. Just like any other Mesh Network, the Lyra AC2200 comes with exciting features to eliminate WiFi dead spots in your home. Although the throughput for this setup cannot match that of the current alternatives in the market.
- Supports AiMesh. You can add other router models from ASUS into the network.
- Automatic network switching
- PC free setup
- AiProtection for your devices and information
- An advanced parental control
- Cool LED lights
- Monitor and control network usage of connected devices
- Traffic Prioritization. You can dedicate more traffic for gaming
Lyra AC2200 setup guide
Setup for this Mesh Network is very simple and can only be done using the ASUS Lyra app.
Step 1: Go ahead and install the app on your mobile phone.
Step 2: Click the start button and follow the onscreen instructions.
Step 3: Choose whichever node you want as your primary hub and connect it to your modem. Plug in the power source and wait for the light on top of the device to go solid white.
Step 4: Now go to your app and tap on the “search” button.
Step 5: Your phone will connect to the node automatically. Proceed by inputting your administrator username and password. Then you will be prompted to enter the location of your network. Just fill home or office.
Step 6: Next, input the SSID or name for your Lyra network and the password as well. It will then take a minute for the setup to complete. When done, the light on top of the node will glow blue.
Step 7: For the other nodes, find a strategic location for them. Far away but close enough to receive feed from each other. Plug in the power source, press the “connect” button on your app and input the location.
Lyra Trio AC1750
This is a more powerful and feature-rich setup than its predecessor. The nodes are pyramid shaped and have three antennas for a 3X3 MIMO. This means it can handle more traffic and more connected devices. The Lyra Trio has powerful signals that penetrate multistory premises. With this option, you will still experience a reliable connection even outside your house.
- 3×3 MIMO for simultaneous transmission
- PC free setup
- Has maximum throughput of 1300Mbps
- AiProtection to keep your network and devices protected
- Parental control
- Compatible with Amazon Alexa
- Cool LED lights
- AiMesh enabled
- Stable and reliable WiFi connections
- Automatically switch to the strongest network while moving around
- Monitor connected devices and their activity
- Pinpoint network problems with the network diagnostic feature
- Allows you to create a guest network with a different SSID and password which you can dedicate to visitors in your home.
- Schedule block to restrict usage during certain times
- Site blocking
Lyra Trio AC1750 setup guide
The setup procedure for Lyra Trio AC1750 is exactly the same as that of Lyra AC2200 since they both use the same app. Let’s lust recap briefly.
- Download and install ASUS Lyra app
- Connect the primary node to the internet
- Scan for the primary node
- Set username and password.
- Setup name and password for the network
In case you run into problems when you are setting up the AiMesh or either of the two Lyra options, reboot the particular node and try again. Always plug in the internet cable or modem to the primary router before plugging in the power source. AiMesh would be ideal if you are looking to retain your standalone router and scale up easily when needed. Lyra is a great option if you are into a stylish look. Furthermore, it blends nicely with the decor.