Need some new APs.. To AC or not to AC?

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We have a new building going up on our campus, and I'm wondering which APs I should use to cover it. Currently, we use 7962s throughout our campus. Knowing that these models will not be supported once firmware version 9.9 comes out, it's in the plans to replace these APs - but likely not until next summer.

I will need this new building covered soon (within a month or two), so I'm trying to decide whether to go with the R-series APs or 7982s.

My inkling is to go with the latest/greatest, to be future proof. But a couple of things I know I need to consider are: the current lack of mesh support on the Rxxx, and the fact we don't have many (any?) AC clients as of yet. We are a 1-to-1 iPad school, and we also rely heavily on a range of laptops.

Just curious as to what folks think. Thanks!
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dmp78

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Posted 3 years ago

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Michael Brado, Official Rep

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I'm in Tech Support and we are told to send customers to Ruckus SEs or Sales
account team for pre-sales questions. But you are correct that 7962, and soon
7982 will not be supported, so R700 makes sense. Non-AC clients will still get
n speed benefits (if the clients are 802.11n).
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John D, AlphaDog

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I will mention that Ruckus stuff in my experience delivers AC data rates to a much greater coverage radius compared to other stuff I've used. It might be worth it.

However, I've found that the 3-stream vs 2-stream (and degree of beamflex-ness) tend to be less important. Specifically, the R500 and R600 might give you excellent bang for the buck in 802.11ac land.

It is unfortunate the AC stuff currently doesn't Mesh, and I've previously asked (and didn't get an answer) as to when it would. If it's meshing that's holding you back, I would suggest 7982's or maybe 7372's even.

Especially if your clients are a bunch of iPads and the laptop bandwidth difference (33% for 2 vs 3 stream) isn't a huge deal, remember that iPads are 2 stream devices, and the price difference between a 2x2:2 and 3x3:3 unit (e.g. 7372 vs 7982) may not actually be worthwhile if replacement cost is an issue.

Overall though, as long as you don't rely on meshing, my personal opinion is that you want AC stuff, but you might want to wait until the full story on Wave 2 802.11AC comes out before choosing your next upgrade.
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dmp78

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Thank you John and Michael. I think I'll go with a couple of the new AC APs for this current project. Lack of mesh shouldn't be an issue in that area.

Cheers

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