Is Ethernet Backhaul always faster?

  • I am wondering if anybody has tested this for the Alien routers.

    It would seem logical that ethernet would always be faster, but I came across a website that tested this, but with a different router system, the ASUS Lyra, and a couple of years ago. in many cases, on the 5ghz network ethernet was actually slower.
    WiFi vs. Ethernet backhaul

  • When testing things, one wants to control all the variables. Since the testing at the site you linked used SpeedTest, they were measuring the performance of the internet connection at the same time they were testing the performance of the internal networks. Since performance acrosss the internet can vary, such testing can sometimes be inaccurate.

    Additionally, the performance of a dedicated 5Gh backhaul will vary with the distance and interference on that network while an ethernet backhaul will not experience that variability. We don't know the distance between the nodes, or the composition of the walls, so it's worth noting that YMMV.

  • @Matthew-Leeds Thanks for the reply. I hadn't thought of the variability, which of course is a major factor.

    Also, by using the ethernet cable I am thinking it is a good benefit toward reducing the traffic on the WiFi network.

    One thing I don't understand though, if they are connected by ethernet, is it only data back from the Router #2 to Router #1, or can data go forward from Router #1 to Router #2 if they are connected by the cable?

  • All the traffic on the backhaul is routed back through the primary mesh unit, even if it is plugged into a switch. In practice it does perform better on the Ethernet backhaul, both on WiFi for clients, as well as overall. I have run any combination of both scenarios, and think that the Ethernet is best all around.

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