Xiaomi Router Extender

Questions and answers about Bebop, Bebop 2 and the Parrot Skycontroller.
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pixxelpusher
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Xiaomi Router Extender

Post by pixxelpusher » 09 Oct 2016, 15:51

Hi all, I've been looking at the Xiaomi range of routers as a range extender and have heard people have had good results with the smaller ones but I haven't read much about the others. I've tried to gather some specs of the main ones:

Xiaomi Mi WiFi Router Nano (Youth)
100g – 9.5 x 9.1 x 1.92 cm x 9.5
2.4GHz only - 2x antennas
5V1A USB
http://xiaomi-mi.com/mi-wifi/xiaomi-mi- ... ano-white/

Xiaomi Mi WiFi Router Mini
255g – 15 x 13.5 x 2.8 cm x 15
2.4&5GHz ac / 2x dual band antennas / can’t repeat at 5ghz
12V1A
http://xiaomi-mi.com/mi-wifi/xiaomi-mi- ... ini-black/

Xiaomi Mi WiFi Router 3C (N300)
241g – 19.5 x 10.7 x 2.53 cm x 17.89
2.4GHz only but 4x 5dBi omnidirectional antennas
5V1A / RMS 5 Watt
http://xiaomi-mi.com/mi-wifi/xiaomi-mi- ... -3c-white/

Xiaomi Mi WiFi Router 3 (AC1200)
220g – 19.5 x 13.1 x 2.35 cm x 17.73
2.4&5GHz ac / 5dBi antennas split 2x2
12V1A / RMS 2 Watt
http://xiaomi-mi.com/mi-wifi/xiaomi-mi- ... r-3-white/

I was wondering if anyone with more tech knowledge than me could give some advice?
The one that's sticking out to me is the "Xiaomi Mi WiFi Router 3C" as it has 4 dedicated 5dBi antennas for 2.4GHz and runs on 5V1A.

I guess the other questions I have are:
- Is something like 5Ghz AC worth having when flying the bebop, will it improve the signal?
- Would 4 antennas like on the "3C" model improve things better (over 2 antennas)?
- Do they all have the "through walls" function?
- Is there anything else in the specs of these that's worth noting?

Things like size and price don't really worry me with these. I do have the sky controller but I'm looking for a slimmer setup without sacrificing range/signal quality.

l.hoornweg
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Re: Xiaomi Router Extender

Post by l.hoornweg » 09 Oct 2016, 20:46

I ordered the nano youth last week via BangGood for a couple of bugs, the advantage of this version is that you can power it with a simple USB powerbank where you have to build your own power supply for any of the others.

about your other questions, in standart config, the 2.4gHz band is used for navigation, where the 5gHz band is used for FPV signal. so, when you only improve your 2.4gHz connection, you will lose your FPV way before you're unable to navidage you BBP2.

having more antenna's doesnt automaticly means it has a better range, but when the output is the same it surely would help. but then, the output wouldn't be the same anymore.

about your'e 3rd ant 4th queston, I have no Idea, I didn't do much research on other extenders than ones with an USB powersupply, plus I don' t really care about the FPV stream for now because the dutch law prohibits me from flying my BBP2 out of sight.

pixxelpusher
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Re: Xiaomi Router Extender

Post by pixxelpusher » 10 Oct 2016, 03:00

Thanks that's some really good info. The thing I really haven't been able to find any info on is if 802.11ac gives any benefit over 802.11n for this kind of thing?
Yeah most people say stick with 2.4gHz and that's what I used with my Sky Controller.
Being able to power from a 5v source is definitely a benefit, but I do have a lot of cable adapters and batteries so that's not a huge issue for me (and am capable of making my own if needed).
The other thing I'm wondering, the 3C (and 3) use larger 5dBi antenna, while the Nano's are smaller (probably 3dbi). Wouldn't this be better for range / signal? I remember reading every 3dB of gain doubles your RF power? (and distance?)

l.hoornweg
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Re: Xiaomi Router Extender

Post by l.hoornweg » 10 Oct 2016, 07:09

the only benefit of 802.11AC over N is your bandwith, you have theoretical more bandwidth with AC than N, but you can only benefit of this when you upload your media via WiFi, other than that, de BBP2 uses an 360P 1MBs connection for FPV so no advantage there.
maybe, but only maybe you will have a slight advatage in practice but I cant guarantee you that.

The 3 would defenetly have a better range cause of the antennas and the amount of radiation (a doubling with every 3dBi sounds realistic (in sound it is anyway)

Now I'm thinking about it, you would be able to use a conventional USB powerbank as long as it is able to give a continuous output of more than 1A, I would prefer 2.1A for savety)

For that i bought the Xiaomi Mi Power Bank 16000mAh Silver http://xiaomi-mi.com/powerbanks/xiaomi- ... ah-silver/
with a continuous output of 1A it would be able to power your router for more than 15 hours straight. I think that would get you trough the day.

pixxelpusher
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Re: Xiaomi Router Extender

Post by pixxelpusher » 10 Oct 2016, 15:11

Ah ok that makes sense, so 802.11AC wouldn't be of much use then. Just when I was reading about the SkyController I see it uses 802.11AC as well, so I thought there must be a reason they went with it over 802.11N.

The more I read up on antennas the more I think the 3C would, like you say, have a bit better range and signal. I was reading earlier that most multi-antenna routers use the antennas in either one of two ways. Some only use one antenna at a time (so the others actually stay turned off) until there are too many devices trying to connect, it will then turn on the next antenna, and so on (which in the case of the Bebop wouldn't be of any use). However, there are some routers that use all the antennas at once and look at the signal coming in on each one and compares the information to generate the strongest connection. As the antennas are spread apart and can be positioned at different angles, they all see the signal a bit differently which apparently can help with the connection. Something like that would benefit the Bebop I reckon, but there's no way to tell if that's how Xiaomi has built theirs.

That's a good looking powerbank, I already have a 10000mAh 2.1A one, but think I might get a smaller one as I don't really fly for more than an hour or so.

l.hoornweg
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Re: Xiaomi Router Extender

Post by l.hoornweg » 11 Oct 2016, 13:13

There will defenetly be a name for that technology but I have no idea what it is.
It would indeed be a waste of money to buy a 4 antenna extender if it would just use one antenna with you BBP2.
Maybe someone else on the forum could tell us the technical name of the technology so people can make a better choise with buying there extender.

pixxelpusher
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Re: Xiaomi Router Extender

Post by pixxelpusher » 11 Oct 2016, 14:07

I can't find much information on it either. I wish manufacturers supplied more detailed specs on their products so it was easier to compare how they worked and what the benefits are especially for this kind of thing.

BayouBill
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Re: Xiaomi Router Extender

Post by BayouBill » 03 Nov 2016, 20:25

l.hoornweg wrote: about your other questions, in standart config, the 2.4gHz band is used for navigation, where the 5gHz band is used for FPV signal. so, when you only improve your 2.4gHz connection, you will lose your FPV way before you're unable to navidage you BBP2.
Are you certain about this? It is my understanding that either 2.4GHz OR 5GHz is used for both video and nav. There is no way to connect your phone or tab to 2.4 and 5 at the same time.

@Pixxelpusher - One reason to use 5GHz is if you are flying in a urban area with lots of WiFi signals, most of which are 2.4GHz, then you are more likely to find a clear channel on 5GHz.

l.hoornweg
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Re: Xiaomi Router Extender

Post by l.hoornweg » 06 Jan 2017, 13:54

BayouBill wrote:
l.hoornweg wrote: about your other questions, in standart config, the 2.4gHz band is used for navigation, where the 5gHz band is used for FPV signal. so, when you only improve your 2.4gHz connection, you will lose your FPV way before you're unable to navidage you BBP2.
Are you certain about this? It is my understanding that either 2.4GHz OR 5GHz is used for both video and nav. There is no way to connect your phone or tab to 2.4 and 5 at the same time.

@Pixxelpusher - One reason to use 5GHz is if you are flying in a urban area with lots of WiFi signals, most of which are 2.4GHz, then you are more likely to find a clear channel on 5GHz.
In this scenario you might be right. because you use one device for both navigation and FPV.
In a "normal" situation you have the radio transmitter using the 2.4 band and a FPV gogles using the 5.8 band.

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