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Maximum number of clients can a MR55 handle (Decent performance)

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Conversationalist

Maximum number of clients can a MR55 handle (Decent performance)

Since there is a boost in the number of MIMO. What is the maximum number of clients one can connect to these access points? Previously for MR52, I find that the sweet spot without compromising is around 65 devices. 

 

Any thoughts on this? Can i assume that ideally, it can handle around 120 concurrent devices? Since the MIMO got doubled?

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Kind of a big deal

Re: Maximum number of clients can a MR55 handle (Decent performance)

Slight misunderstanding here, as there are not 8 radios, there is still only one 2.4GHz radio and one 5GHz radio (and a bluetooth radio and a 3rd wireless radio dedicated to spectrum analysis and scanning), just more antenna which in theory will allow more streams to clients that could support it, more throughput, better RX/TX, benefits from multi-path, diversity etc.  However, since it is still 802.11, the rules of arbitration still apply. One client can talk at a time.
 
cwap-contention-01.png
 
This changes a bit with 802.11ax (WIFI 6) with OFDM-A, but this requires client support which we are still honestly a few years away from becoming the norm.  I will say that I am so happy to see the iPhone 11 supporting it. Was not expecting that as Apple is usually a year or two behind the times in most cases.
 
Say you have two cell phones, they both have 2x2:2 support. They both want to talk to the MR55. They both still have to take turns, including the AP.  **Unless those phones are the new Samsung Galaxy S10 or iPhone 11, then they could benefit from 802.11ax and 'talk' at the same time. I'm super excited about the efficiency this will bring, fingers crossed at least. Most wireless data are tiny small packets (500 bytes and smaller), so this will help a lot with TXOPs etc. 
 
Have a look here:
 
 
Max client count per radio limit is 128 according to this, and I'm going to assume this rule still applies to the new MR45/MR55 (unless someone knows otherwise?).
 
Also here is a guide by Meraki:
 
 
 
That being said, unless you have 100% WIFI 6 clients in a greenfield environment, the number of clients supported is still a limitation of the physics of wireless from an RF perspective and the protocol being used. 
 
You could have 10 clients all trying to stream 4K video, and your AP is maxed out. Or you could have 100 clients all just trying to access http or twitter, each getting like 500Kbps, and it would work. It depends all on what the clients are doing. Are they all actively using the wireless concurrently? Or will you have 50 clients connected, but maybe only 5 'using it'. So many variables that you cannot control that will determine how well the AP will perform.  Now toss in are you using 20MHz, 40MHz, channel re-use, power, neighboring networks on the same frequency, non-802.11 interference, how you have your gear configured. The list is endless.
 
In the past I use to be concerned when I saw 30 clients on the same AP (this was just before 802.11ac came out). Now a days when I see 50 I'll take a look to see what I can do to try and distribute the load.
 
I know this isn't a Meraki document, its Aruba, but its a gold mine (and holy grail for me) for information and I reference this plenty when doing designs (not just VHD). If you want your head to explode, go ahead and read it lol.
 
 
One cool graph from this is the following on page 47 (treat this as theory, again variables impact everything):
 
5555.JPG
 
 
Nolan Herring | nolanwifi.com
TwitterLinkedIn
4 REPLIES 4
Kind of a big deal

Re: Maximum number of clients can a MR55 handle (Decent performance)

If your clients are WiFi5 - then the same.

Conversationalist

Re: Maximum number of clients can a MR55 handle (Decent performance)

even with the 8 x MIMO ? 

Kind of a big deal

Re: Maximum number of clients can a MR55 handle (Decent performance)

I can see you reasoning (8 radios, each configured with a 20Mhz channel).  I don't think I would be brave enough to double the client count.

Highlighted
Kind of a big deal

Re: Maximum number of clients can a MR55 handle (Decent performance)

Slight misunderstanding here, as there are not 8 radios, there is still only one 2.4GHz radio and one 5GHz radio (and a bluetooth radio and a 3rd wireless radio dedicated to spectrum analysis and scanning), just more antenna which in theory will allow more streams to clients that could support it, more throughput, better RX/TX, benefits from multi-path, diversity etc.  However, since it is still 802.11, the rules of arbitration still apply. One client can talk at a time.
 
cwap-contention-01.png
 
This changes a bit with 802.11ax (WIFI 6) with OFDM-A, but this requires client support which we are still honestly a few years away from becoming the norm.  I will say that I am so happy to see the iPhone 11 supporting it. Was not expecting that as Apple is usually a year or two behind the times in most cases.
 
Say you have two cell phones, they both have 2x2:2 support. They both want to talk to the MR55. They both still have to take turns, including the AP.  **Unless those phones are the new Samsung Galaxy S10 or iPhone 11, then they could benefit from 802.11ax and 'talk' at the same time. I'm super excited about the efficiency this will bring, fingers crossed at least. Most wireless data are tiny small packets (500 bytes and smaller), so this will help a lot with TXOPs etc. 
 
Have a look here:
 
 
Max client count per radio limit is 128 according to this, and I'm going to assume this rule still applies to the new MR45/MR55 (unless someone knows otherwise?).
 
Also here is a guide by Meraki:
 
 
 
That being said, unless you have 100% WIFI 6 clients in a greenfield environment, the number of clients supported is still a limitation of the physics of wireless from an RF perspective and the protocol being used. 
 
You could have 10 clients all trying to stream 4K video, and your AP is maxed out. Or you could have 100 clients all just trying to access http or twitter, each getting like 500Kbps, and it would work. It depends all on what the clients are doing. Are they all actively using the wireless concurrently? Or will you have 50 clients connected, but maybe only 5 'using it'. So many variables that you cannot control that will determine how well the AP will perform.  Now toss in are you using 20MHz, 40MHz, channel re-use, power, neighboring networks on the same frequency, non-802.11 interference, how you have your gear configured. The list is endless.
 
In the past I use to be concerned when I saw 30 clients on the same AP (this was just before 802.11ac came out). Now a days when I see 50 I'll take a look to see what I can do to try and distribute the load.
 
I know this isn't a Meraki document, its Aruba, but its a gold mine (and holy grail for me) for information and I reference this plenty when doing designs (not just VHD). If you want your head to explode, go ahead and read it lol.
 
 
One cool graph from this is the following on page 47 (treat this as theory, again variables impact everything):
 
5555.JPG
 
 
Nolan Herring | nolanwifi.com
TwitterLinkedIn
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