Alien Coverage

  • Hello... I currently have the Amplifi HD with the 2 mesh units and the coverage is great for my 2400sq 2 story home plus my lawn.... I was lucky enough to buy the Alien standalone today while it was in stock. My question is will 1 Alien unit be enough in terms of coverage or will I need a second unit? Thanks

  • @Carlos-Flores Based off just the sq ft. of your home, one Alien should be enough. Depending on placement limitation and construction materials, other possible electrical interference, it's hard to say exactly the experience you will have, but on paper one should be fine.

  • @UI-Brett Thank you

  • @UI-Brett So I am happy to report that the 1 Amplifi Alien standalone was more than enough to cover my entire 2 story house. I did noticed that I seem to get 300-400mbs on the farthest end of the house where I used to get 40-90mbs using the Amplifi HD mesh system (with the 2 mesh points). Something interesting is that on the farthest end of the lawn the wireless internet disconnects on my iPhone and it connects to LTE. I noticed that iPhone get 5Ghz wireless then it looses signal and connects to the mobile LTE. Why would it not connect to the 2.4Ghz band ? I didn't have this problem with the Amplifi HD I would at least have 2.4ghz and have internet on all my lawn?

  • Hi @Carlos-Flores - as a test you can create a separate unique 2.4 GHz Only SSID and put your phone in airplane mode to check the 2.4 GHz coverage

    You may want to make your phone temporarily forget the common SSID so you stay locked on to the 2.4 GHz SSID

  • @Derek-Saville Thanks for your response so I did the test you asked and unfortunately the 2.4ghz coverage is just not there I don’t have coverage to half of my back yard. 😞 and I used to have coverage on all my front and back lawn. I did had one of the mesh point on one of the back rooms with the AMPLIFI HD and maybe that mesh point was extending the signal further out. Unfortunately the Alien just can’t

  • @Carlos-Flores Update* So with the Amplifi Alien speeds are great inside the house all corners.. however outside on my front and back yard WiFi is spotty as compared with the AMPLIFI HD mesh system I had covering every corner of my lawn. So I disconnected the the Alien and plugged in the AMPLIFI HD mesh with the 2 mesh points and sure enough I had wireless were with the alien I did not... I even had 5ghz at 69% strength coming from one of the mesh points. I disconnected the mesh points and even with the Amplifi HD router by itself the signal strength was identical with the Alien it would even loose connection in the same places. Didn’t the alien was advertised as having 2x more everything than the AMPLIFI HD? At this point is not even cost effective buying a second Alien for that price when the Amplifi HD was enough. Taking this with a grain of salt but honestly is not the 2x coverage I was expecting to get.......... bummed ☹️ By the way I don’t have any WiFi 6 devices maybe the better coverage is with wifi6?

  • Hi @Carlos-Flores - the "2x coverage" is theoretical in open air

    The Alien has a significantly improved antenna array over the HD, which allows for the theoretical improvement in coverage

    However, once you introduce barriers, like walls, coverage can drop off significantly, and your exterior walls may be an even greater impediment to WiFi signals

    WiFi transmission power is regulated, so there is only so much energy available, and where your Alien is currently located, it just isn't strong enough to get through those walls to reach your lawns

    And the HD and the MeshPoint HD's have slightly higher transmission power spec's (because they have less complex antennas) versus the Alien, and when they are placed closer to the outside lawns, are able to to get through the walls to cover them

    Unfortunately I believe you have an HD kit, so you cannot repurposed the components for additional coverage with the Alien

    If you had a standalone HD or standalone MeshPoint HD, although it is not officially recommended, you could turn on the Alien's additional 5.2 GHz radio, give it a separate SSID, and use a standalone HD in 3rd Party wireless mode to act as a pseudo WiFi extender, although this adds the complexity of managing them separately

    Otherwise, if you really need coverage outside, you might look into lower cost extenders versus the high cost of a 2nd or 3rd Alien

  • @Derek-Saville Thanks..... at least it works great inside the house..... and yes I have the kit on the hd... either way I am happy with the performance inside the house where it really matters and it works outside good enough where I barbecue so it’s all good

  • Hi @Carlos-Flores - indeed outdoor coverage of the BBQ is ‘mission critical’ for sure

  • @Derek-Saville yep it is for sure 😂

  • @Derek-Saville @UI-Brett So a little update... the AMPLIFI Alien has been working great and I haven’t had any reboots like other people are mentioning 🤞... ( and I just got the Alien like 2 weeks ago) besides loosing some minimal coverage in my backyard I noticed something very interesting with band steering. Every time I am in my bedroom on the opposite end of the house in relation to the Alien router I noticed that my phone and my roku stick On the tv would always connect to 2.4ghz band thus only getting max speeds of 25-30mbs. At first I thought well maybe 5ghz is too weak in this area but after I disabled band steering I notice the 5ghz band signal strength was in the low 60% which should be plenty. Now that I have band steering off I get speeds on my phone of over 270mbs+ Thats a big difference from the 20-30mbs on the 2.4ghz band. Is there a way you guys can make band steering a little bit not too picky to where it would hold the 5ghz band a little longer than the 60% signal strength. My connection has been solid no issues so why would the Alien force me to the slower 2.4ghz band. Anyways thanks

  • Hi @Carlos-Flores - it's actually the client devices themselves that decide when to roam, so AmpliFi cannot directly force a device to stay on 5 GHz if the device likes a 2.4 GHz signal better

    This method won't be a good idea for most people, but if a single Alien can well cover your premises with 5 GHz, what I do is disable the Common SSID and give the 2.4 GHz band a separate SSID from 5 GHz

    So any 2.4 GHz only devices only gets to know the 2.4 GHz SSID...for example CHEZ24

    Then all of my 5 GHz devices exclusively use their own SSID...for example CHEZ58

    Just to make things more complicated, I also enable the Additional 5 GHz radio and create a second unique 5.2 GHz SSID (CHEZ52) and split up my 5 GHz devices between the two

    So for example you might put your Roku Stick on CHEZ52 and your phone on CHEZ58

    Some 5 GHz devices seem to prefer one band or the other, so it takes a little bit of experimenting, and it may not make any difference at all...

  • @Derek-Saville thanks I will try that 👍👍

  • Hey everyone, thanks for the great information. I am in the same boat, just put in the Alien router to replace my Amplifi HD system and getting over double speeds. However my house is a ranch and spread out and one of the rooms that has a Roku on the far edge of the house can't even see the Alien network where it used to be fine on my Amplif HD system. My question is since I just bought the single Alien router what do I need to add so I can have a mesh? Just another Alien router or is the Alien mesh point a different product?

  • Well after further testing the Alien doesn't have near the coverage as my Amplifi HD system. I will be returning the Alien Router.

  • @Nick-Nystrom Same thing happened to me regarding the coverage. It is very lacking compared to the Amplifi Hd Mesh system and I could have added a second Alien to resolve the coverage issue but it was not cost effective especially when the Amplifi HD worked great and is cheaper. It’s a shame because speeds are great.

  • @Nick-Nystrom Yes you could add a second Alien and use it as a mesh point. That should resolve your coverage issue with the roku.

  • @Carlos-Flores Thanks Carlos. Yeah I am not about to buy another Alien to just have the same coverage. The increased speeds were nice but I already have Gig internet so it really doesn't matter wifi. I am returning the Alien.

  • @Nick-Nystrom Yep I agree I am stuck with the Alien since I gave the Amplifi Hd away thinking 1 Alien was enough. Not buying a second alien anytime soon maybe second hand 1 year later when they get cheaper. Anyways it was mentioned earlier in post that you might be able to use one of the amplifi HD mesh points as a unofficial mesh point for the alien (assuming is not part of a kit as they only work with the main router the kit came with) or use a cheaper repeater just to reach the roku in your situation. Might be a cheap alternative for you. But if you still have the HD mesh I would just return the Alien.

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