Meraki Releases WIFI 6E AP MR57 is MR56 actually a Faster AP ?

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KevinFor2021
Here to help

Meraki Releases WIFI 6E AP MR57 is MR56 actually a Faster AP ?

Just saw this on the website MR57 (cisco.com) it is listed as 4x4:4 MU-MiMO   5Ghz & 6Ghz are  2.4Mbps 4 stream /80Mhz and 2.4Ghz is 574Mbps 4stream /80Mhz with dual 2.5Gb ethernet ports. why 2 ports? and can this be bonded into a 5Gb using LAG/LACP on the switch for any increased throughput?. or is this active/standby in case one ethernet port goes bad or one port is for POE the other for data?.

 
 the MR56 is 4.804Mbps 8 stream/160Mhz and 2.5Ghz is 1.147Mbs 4/40Mhz single 5Gb MGig port.. While I agree most clients are 2x2 or 3x3 but the advantage of the MR56 being 8x8:8 is an additional 3db gain. that the MR57 is missing..  in terms of 6Ghz vs 5Ghz is 6 technically shorter range? While there are more channels in 6Ghz & very few  clients currently - Even if we upgraded all our laptops to WIFI 6E  today...  when we run InSSIDer there is no overlapping 5Ghz channel interference from other businesses in our area it's the 2.4Ghz that is congested  so would the MR56 be faster even in the 2.4Ghz range and could handle more clients then the MR57 or am i mistaken? (574Mbps on the MR57 vs 1.45Mbps on the MR56)
 
so I am trying to figure out what the advantage of MR57 vs MR56 - or if the real replacement  for MR56 would be a new AP like MR59 (MR58 is a discontinued 802.11n model) that supports 8x8:8 160Mhz WIFI 6E for dozens of 2x2 & 3x3  5 & 6Ghz clients.. due to the 3db gain
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Nicole_Gallow
Meraki Employee

Hey @KevinFor2021! You came to the right place with your questions and thoughts! I’m ready to hop in here so brace yourself!

 

MR57 can operate in 2.4GHz, 5GHz and 6GHz spectrum. Since there are three different spectrums, there is no overlap in the frequency space. This results in a higher aggregate throughput as compared with MR56.

 

As I’m sure you well know, with new devices coming into the market so frequently, 5 GHz is gradually increasing in client traffic - which can potentially cause more interference. Since 6GHz is introduced with MR57, newer Wi-Fi 6E capable clients are moved to 6 GHz spectrum, providing legacy 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz clients more available spectrum and less interference. Hence the overall throughput in real world from MR57, even being a 4x4, will be higher as compared to our MR56. The other important factor with 5 GHz having a lesser number of channels available (even lesser when considering DFS channels) to operate as compared to 6 GHz frequency is that it most likely restricts enterprise deployments to be mostly at 40 MHz frequency. And that effectively reduces the throughput as compared to MR57’s 6 GHz capable frequencies, which can be deployed at 80 MHz or even 160 MHz (7 non overlapping channels) frequencies, increasing the throughput of the clients.

 

In today’s marketplace, most wireless clients support 2x2 and few 4x4 clients. Having multiple 4x4 capable radios makes the Access Point and RF much more efficient.

 

While adding a brand new 6 GHz radio in addition to the 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz radio all operating at 4x4, the MR57 is able to handle full radio performance without increasing PoE budget and can be fully powered for all radios to be operational with a PoE+/802.3at compliant power source. In addition, the MR57 can aggregate two 5 Gbps capable mGig Ethernet inputs for an aggregate throughput of 10 Gbps.

 

The MR57 is also capable of being deployed in dual 5 GHz band. This mode really helps with isolating multiple clients between two 5 GHz channels while operating simultaneously - which effectively doubles the clients that can be serviced by the 5 GHz radio, hence providing more throughput.

 

Lastly, if you're up for some light reading, feel free to check out our MR57 FAQ for more information, or reach out on here of course.

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28 REPLIES 28
KarstenI
Kind of a big deal

Today I would expect the device to be equally fast for the users like a MR46 or MR56. But in the future when more clients a capable of 6GHz, there will be an increased throughput because more often we will be able to use 80 MHz channels or even 160 MHz where now are typically 40MHz or even 20 MHz is in use. Ok, 160 MHz channels will probably not that useful  in Germany where I am because we only have half the frequency to use compared to US.

 

In the past, the two LAN-ports could be bonded together with LACP. I would expect that this device also can do this, the Datasheet will tell us.

KarstenI
Kind of a big deal

Oh, there is one aspect that can make the MR57 about twice as fast as the MRx6: It contains a dual-band radio for 5 and 6 GHz. Without the clients, we can have an additional 5 GHz radio and later switch that radio to 6GHz when the compatible clients show up.

KarstenI
Kind of a big deal

And it looks exactly like the Catalyst 9136, I hope it doesn't get the same disaster as with the MS390.

JohnD
Getting noticed

8x8 seems kind of moot unless you are meshing as there’s barely any WiFi 6 client chipsets beyond 2x2. Also the MR56 doesn’t do 160MHz or 80p80 and the comments here from Cisco makes it sound unlikely it would ever support that. 

between that and a new chipset generation, I do expect the MR57 to be faster, but at the same time I think you’re right to be cautious. There are always newer chipsets and newer APs down the road and the history of first generation hardware has not really been kind to early adopters.

I am very excited for WiFi 6E but this might be too early to adopt unless you’re really under a schedule constraint.

ChesterX
Here to help

The form factor of the MR57 looks really boring.  The other MR designs feel modern and hip, but this one looks like a PC from the 1980's -- boxy and beige.  Look forward to seeing what the other 6E devices look like as they come out, but this one is a 'no thanks' for me based on looks alone.

WB
Getting noticed

Utilising the Cisco universal bracket is actually a very smart move, lots of customers who might be running legacy Aironet deployments can do a hardware refresh to the MR57 without having to completely re-install all the brackets as well. Massive time saver for large deployments

MerryAki
Getting noticed

That’s true, but why wouldn’t Cisco adjust the mounting options for the rectangular APs (46,56 etc)?

I don’t like the design aswell.

WB
Getting noticed

There's a universal bracket adapter that Meraki sell for mounting the rectangular MRs to universal brackets. No idea what prompted the change for the MR57, I can only speculate that either the extra 6 GHz radio forced a design change or that they figured people have been holding off on hardware refreshes to Wi-Fi 6 only knowing that 6E was coming which would require purchasing new hardware again. Offering a simple hardware swap is just that extra incentive perhaps?

cmr
Kind of a big deal
Kind of a big deal

The MR57 is a Cisco Aironet AP reprogrammed to run Meraki code.  It is done to save on hardware development costs and I'd expect the plan is for all new APs from Cisco to use common hardware whether they are native Cisco or Meraki.  Hopefully it will work better than the MS390 (which is the switch equivalent of this) 🤞

WB
Getting noticed

Good point cmr, completely forgot the 9136 is pretty much identical in look bar the logo!! Slight difference under the hood but it makes sense to share R&D

MerryAki
Getting noticed

Didn’t knew that, but yes, Cisco and Cisco Meraki appliances are similar.

Thanks for the hint with that bracket 🙌

Nicole_Gallow
Meraki Employee

Hey @KevinFor2021! You came to the right place with your questions and thoughts! I’m ready to hop in here so brace yourself!

 

MR57 can operate in 2.4GHz, 5GHz and 6GHz spectrum. Since there are three different spectrums, there is no overlap in the frequency space. This results in a higher aggregate throughput as compared with MR56.

 

As I’m sure you well know, with new devices coming into the market so frequently, 5 GHz is gradually increasing in client traffic - which can potentially cause more interference. Since 6GHz is introduced with MR57, newer Wi-Fi 6E capable clients are moved to 6 GHz spectrum, providing legacy 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz clients more available spectrum and less interference. Hence the overall throughput in real world from MR57, even being a 4x4, will be higher as compared to our MR56. The other important factor with 5 GHz having a lesser number of channels available (even lesser when considering DFS channels) to operate as compared to 6 GHz frequency is that it most likely restricts enterprise deployments to be mostly at 40 MHz frequency. And that effectively reduces the throughput as compared to MR57’s 6 GHz capable frequencies, which can be deployed at 80 MHz or even 160 MHz (7 non overlapping channels) frequencies, increasing the throughput of the clients.

 

In today’s marketplace, most wireless clients support 2x2 and few 4x4 clients. Having multiple 4x4 capable radios makes the Access Point and RF much more efficient.

 

While adding a brand new 6 GHz radio in addition to the 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz radio all operating at 4x4, the MR57 is able to handle full radio performance without increasing PoE budget and can be fully powered for all radios to be operational with a PoE+/802.3at compliant power source. In addition, the MR57 can aggregate two 5 Gbps capable mGig Ethernet inputs for an aggregate throughput of 10 Gbps.

 

The MR57 is also capable of being deployed in dual 5 GHz band. This mode really helps with isolating multiple clients between two 5 GHz channels while operating simultaneously - which effectively doubles the clients that can be serviced by the 5 GHz radio, hence providing more throughput.

 

Lastly, if you're up for some light reading, feel free to check out our MR57 FAQ for more information, or reach out on here of course.

Do we know the MR57 price yet? It's not live on Meraki Cost Calculator.

cmr
Kind of a big deal
Kind of a big deal

@FlyingFrames I don't think it is expected to ship until Q4 according to the launch information, so we might not get pricing until nearer the time...

"Options to configure 6 GHz frequencies will be disabled in the dashboard for these countries."
https://documentation.meraki.com/MR/Other_Topics/MR57_Frequently_Asked_Questions

 

What if the countries that open it up later, will meraki enable the 6ghz configuration later on?

As 6 GHz is available, absolutely! 

Does MR57 reduce the number of SSIDs from 16 to 8? I understand its not advised to create that many but i want to know if the hardware has restricted the implementation!

No. Of course 6 GHz requires WPA3, which may mandate separate SSID. But we don't decrease the number of SSIDs. 

Cisco has reduced their SSIDs to 8, i was curious if the same is case with Meraki APs!
Please check the attached screenshot.

FlyingFrames_0-1649267317656.png

 

What is the BLE version on MR57? 5.2 or 5.1?
its not clear from the datasheet!

cmr
Kind of a big deal
Kind of a big deal

@Nicole_Gallow thank you, that is a useful explanation.  One thing, are you sure it is 5+5=10 on the LAN side and not 2.5+2.5=5 as the datasheet suggests?

 

Edit: scratch that, the sheets now say what you did, apologies!

MerryAki
Getting noticed

Hope that there will be a beautiful MR47 aswell. I don't like the squared design. For now I would choose a MR46/56 instead.
As they are not listed yet, when will the Website be updated?

Hey @Nicole_Gallow 

i checked the localized webview, it wasn’t there (de-de)

https://meraki.cisco.com/de-de/products/wi-fi/models/

Hope to see this and more 6E APs soon 😉

cmr
Kind of a big deal
Kind of a big deal

@MerryAki I'd not expect them shortly, it is hard enough for them to produce one model at the moment, so I expect we'll see more limited ranges for the moment.  We're currently about 90 days into our wait for a few MR44s, and those were the model with the shortest wait time...

KarstenI
Kind of a big deal

We just ordered a bunch of MR57 with a lead time of 38 days. All other models (typically we had taken the MR44/46) had much longer lead times. Now I am waiting for them to arrive.

Great, would love to see some hands-on reviews 🙂

Agus
Getting noticed

Hi all,

 

Thank you for sharing, will try if have budget 😁

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