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superdog
I Need A Drink
Premium,MVM
join:2001-07-13
Lebanon, PA

ARCFlex FreeStation

Has anyone used one of these? With the UBNT supply issues and the fact that I HATE to be married to one OEM, I was wondering if anyone has played with these radios? They appear to be a solid unit? I have used ARC wireless antennas in the past with good results, but that was just plastic and copper with no electronics inside.

You are getting 2 radios for the price of one. In a lot of my installs, I am running CAT5 inside the house right to a wireless router, which in turn then connects all the PC's and other gizmos the customer uses. I am not sure a little 3dB antenna will provide enough coverage inside the house, but I know that each setup will be different?

I guess I just have to break down and buy 2 or 3 of these and the new DLB units and see what happens? (Unless someone tells me they are junk, at which point I will save my $$, Lol )
--
»www.wavecrazy.net


Wisperbeans

@comcast.net
Superdog, did you end up trying some? How about the Dlb's? I've been in the industry for a while and starting to put together a small rural WISP and dont want to get stuck in the UBNT rut.


Inssomniak
The Glitch
Premium
join:2005-04-06
Cayuga, ON
kudos:2
reply to superdog
I am multi vendor, but the thing that gets you stuck in the rut is the proprietary protocols each of the mikrotik/delib/ubnt offer, and whilst I can't vouch for the deliberant one yet, the other 2 work good. But you get locked in.

Only way to be truly multi vendor is to be 802.11 all the way, and stay away from the optional protocols.
--
OptionsDSL Wireless Internet
»www.optionsdsl.ca


superdog
I Need A Drink
Premium,MVM
join:2001-07-13
Lebanon, PA
said by Wisperbeans :

Superdog, did you end up trying some? How about the Dlb's? I've been in the industry for a while and starting to put together a small rural WISP and dont want to get stuck in the UBNT rut.

I didn't buy anything yet. I really like the Freestation units from a price and feature standpoint. More bang for the $$ so to speak. I will soon, and I will let you know.

said by Inssomniak:

I am multi vendor, but the thing that gets you stuck in the rut is the proprietary protocols each of the mikrotik/delib/ubnt offer, and whilst I can't vouch for the deliberant one yet, the other 2 work good. But you get locked in.

Only way to be truly multi vendor is to be 802.11 all the way, and stay away from the optional protocols.

I agree with this 100%. IMHO, without using one of these protocols, it will be harder to setup a large user base per AP. Granted, for years most of us have just used good old 802.11x whatever and with setting the RTS way down, got a form of "poor mans" polling. Eventually though, if you plan on really getting a good ROI and density per AP, polling will be the only way to go. To this point, I only have one AP using the UBNT Airmax platform. The rest are old school, as I too did NOT want to get in bed with one vendor.

My wife signed a pre-nuptual agreement, but I highly doubt UBNT will, Lol
--
»www.wavecrazy.net


superdog
I Need A Drink
Premium,MVM
join:2001-07-13
Lebanon, PA

1 recommendation

reply to superdog
Just an FYI, Freestations are on the UPS truck headed for my office!I will let you know what I think very soon!
--
»www.wavecrazy.net


superdog
I Need A Drink
Premium,MVM
join:2001-07-13
Lebanon, PA

1 recommendation

reply to superdog
OK, My goodies came today! They are small. Really small. Thats cool though, as it is less of a wind load. The units appear to be built fairly well. They have an SMA connector at the bottom. It would be nicer if it were an "N" connector instead, but then again, it would be very bulky and look strange on such a small unit.

It also has an installer ESSID for configuration that allows you to connect right to the radio by just plugging it in to power (can be disabled). I didn't log into it yet, so I am not sure how the GUI works/looks/feels. The LEDS are at a good spot, although there are no signal level LEDs to help you with rough alignment. It also has 2 USB ports and I am not sure what those could be for. They have a USB type radio, so perhaps it can be used to power one?
--
»www.wavecrazy.net


John Galt
Forward, March
Premium
join:2004-09-30
Happy Camp
kudos:8
said by superdog:

It also has 2 USB ports and I am not sure what those could be for. They have a USB type radio, so perhaps it can be used to power one?

I believe their intention is to use it for a monitoring cam, Tim.


superdog
I Need A Drink
Premium,MVM
join:2001-07-13
Lebanon, PA
said by John Galt:

I believe their intention is to use it for a monitoring cam, Tim.

Duh!!!! You are 100% correct.
--
»www.wavecrazy.net

staregazer

join:2006-12-15
reply to superdog
What does MCS mean? I see MCS1 MCS2 MCS3 and so on for the 802.11 n Mimo products now. How much throughput does each MCS have?

jcremin

join:2009-12-22
Siren, WI
kudos:3
said by staregazer:

What does MCS mean? I see MCS1 MCS2 MCS3 and so on for the 802.11 n Mimo products now. How much throughput does each MCS have?

»en.wikipedia.org/wiki/IEEE_802.1···ta_rates

staregazer

join:2006-12-15
Reviews:
·Frontier Communi..
reply to superdog
I wonder how these new 802.11n MIMO radios offered by Deliberant and Arc Wireless with the 15 db flat panel antennas compare to the Tranzeo CPQ-19 radios. When I used the SL2 15 db Tranzeo radios they did not perform near as well as the CPQ-19 so that is the same worry that I have with all these new 15 db antenna radios, not having a 19 db antenna option.

staregazer

join:2006-12-15
Reviews:
·Frontier Communi..
reply to superdog
Here's a few videos explaining these new products by arc wireless

»www.youtube.com/watch?v=FtscMJ32rIA


»www.youtube.com/watch?v=zYa5cvC-S6w

SipSizzurp
Fo' Shizzle
Premium
join:2005-12-28
Houston, TX
kudos:4
I managed to get through 11 minutes of the first video, and killed the second one at 52 seconds....

They really need to work on their marketing strategy.
--
I feel more like I do now than when I first got here.


John Galt
Forward, March
Premium
join:2004-09-30
Happy Camp
kudos:8

1 recommendation

said by SipSizzurp:

They really need to work on their marketing strategy.

That's why I'm waiting for the superdog See Profile review...!

SipSizzurp
Fo' Shizzle
Premium
join:2005-12-28
Houston, TX
kudos:4
reply to superdog
Where did you get the radios from ? StreakWave seems to have only parts and antennas, but no radios.
»www.streakwave.com/Product-ARC.asp
--
I feel more like I do now than when I first got here.

LLigetfa

join:2006-05-15
Fort Frances, ON
kudos:1

SipSizzurp
Fo' Shizzle
Premium
join:2005-12-28
Houston, TX
kudos:4
Thanks. Wisp Router didn't have them either ; »store.wisp-router.com/ARC%20Wireless
but Pasadena does. »www.wlanparts.com/category/wlan.···ireless/
If Streak and Wisp are both out of something I have found that rest of the suppliers are usually out too, even if they claim to have stock. I'll hold tight for another week or two, but it is high time that we investigate new options and I'll do my share in sniffing them out.
--
I feel more like I do now than when I first got here.


superdog
I Need A Drink
Premium,MVM
join:2001-07-13
Lebanon, PA
reply to superdog
Just an FYI, I got these direct from ARC Wireless. I also had an issue locating them. After a few phone calls, I got what I wanted. I still haven't fired them up. It has been hotter than a (insert your favorite line here...) and I have also been REALLY busy with my landscaping business. Yes, call me crazy, but after 20 years doing the insurance thing full time AND running a WISP, I wanted something that I could do where I got paid to get exercise and be outdoors at the same time. Since I was in a position to do anything I wanted, I picked landscaping. Maybe it wasn't the best choice? but I am committed to contracts now, so I MUST keep going, Lol.
--
»www.wavecrazy.net

staregazer

join:2006-12-15
reply to superdog
Still haven't fired them up yet?


superdog
I Need A Drink
Premium,MVM
join:2001-07-13
Lebanon, PA

1 recommendation

said by staregazer:

Still haven't fired them up yet?

Yes, I have. They are currently being used on a very short test link (about a mile) to provide back-haul and then access point on a temp site we are working at (It seems my crew MUST have Facebook access while grading, seeding and planting bushes?). Since both radios have an 802.11b/g/n AP in them, I simply fired up the AP at the far end and used it for access. So far so good?. The interface is a little clunky but it works. I guess when you are used to using one type of interface for 3 or 4 years straight, it takes some time to get used to it.

I must say, I LOVE the fact that these radios have the extra AP in them. It saves a lot of time not having to rig up an AP and waterproof it and the antenna that goes with it. Granted, if you want something with more juice than the little rubber duckie that comes with, you still have to tape that up, BUT, it is still a time saver.

I am not sure what to think of the mounting bracket/system?. It seems a little flimsy, but it has held up through a few wicked thunderstorms so far without an issue. It has 2 re-useable black UV resistant zip ties and is very similar to the UBNT setup (I don't use the ones UBNT sends you, as they are white and I doubt they would last long in the sun?). From a personal standpoint, I always use 1 zip tie and one stainless pipe clamp, as I do not trust having the radio stay in place when held on by 2 pieces of plastic, Lol. It is only mounted 20 feet in the air though, so I still don't have any idea how it would do at 150 feet in a 70mph wind? I guess time will tell?

Throughput seems good with low ping times across the link (2 to 3ms average). I have not tested it with a load on though, as the most amount of users I have ever had was 6. I will be putting it through its paces though, as I wonder how it will do with one unit acting as a slave AND 802.11b/g/n AP at the same time with 15 users associated to the AP side of it. I have no clue as to what processor is in it (Where is Lutful when you need him, LMAO!), so the amount of horsepower this thing has is unknown to me (It is probably printed on the box?, am I lazy or what? )
--
»www.wavecrazy.net

iansltx

join:2007-02-19
Austin, TX
kudos:2
Funny...the data sheet has plenty of antena/radio info, but no information on how much horsepower the unit has. I'm going to go out on a limb and guess it's a 400MHz MIPS CPU, similar to M-series Ubnt stuff, but I could be very wrong.


Inssomniak
The Glitch
Premium
join:2005-04-06
Cayuga, ON
kudos:2
said by iansltx:

Funny...the data sheet has plenty of antena/radio info, but no information on how much horsepower the unit has. I'm going to go out on a limb and guess it's a 400MHz MIPS CPU, similar to M-series Ubnt stuff, but I could be very wrong.

Yes probably a 300 or 400mhz SoC from Atheros.

Edit. actually appears to be a 300mhz Ralink SoC
--
OptionsDSL Wireless Internet
»www.optionsdsl.ca

iansltx

join:2007-02-19
Austin, TX
kudos:2
Reviews:
·Time Warner Cable
·Verizon Online DSL
300 or 384? I've owned a couple WiFi routers (Engenius ESR9850, Encore EHNWI-2AN3) that had the 384MHz part on-board and they seemed to perform well enough. The Engenius part could actually hit 600+ Mbps in routing throughput, according to SmallNetBuilder. So if Arc has that CPU inside the ARCFlex it should be decent throughput-wise.


Inssomniak
The Glitch
Premium
join:2005-04-06
Cayuga, ON
kudos:2
said by iansltx:

300 or 384? I've owned a couple WiFi routers (Engenius ESR9850, Encore EHNWI-2AN3) that had the 384MHz part on-board and they seemed to perform well enough. The Engenius part could actually hit 600+ Mbps in routing throughput, according to SmallNetBuilder. So if Arc has that CPU inside the ARCFlex it should be decent throughput-wise.

Appears to be at 384mhz actually.

»www.tracermcc.ru/foto/bender/RT3···0902.pdf
--
OptionsDSL Wireless Internet
»www.optionsdsl.ca


superdog
I Need A Drink
Premium,MVM
join:2001-07-13
Lebanon, PA
reply to superdog
Just an FYI gang, this is the Freestation 5 we are discussing, NOT the Freestation 2. I will get to those soon.
--
»www.wavecrazy.net

danry25
Premium
join:2008-05-21
Seattle, WA
Reviews:
·Comcast
Superdog, did you ever get that FreeStation 2? I've been wrangling with a friend of mine who bought one over in Maryland, he is attempting to get OpenWRT installed & it is being a pain. The wiki makes it look so simple...