Unifi Wi-Fi Access Point


Best Wi-Fi access point

This is simply the best wireless access point I have used.

I live in an oddly-constructed house with poor Wi-Fi penetration, so I’m demanding on the radio envelope of wireless access points. I also use IPv6 and other new protocols that some manufacturers just can’t be bothered to support. The Unifi access points has solved all my problems. It’s designed for offices, hotels and such like, but definitely recommended for domestic use.

The hardware is elegant and effective: just wall or ceiling-tile mount (basic kits for both are supplied in the box), plug in an ethernet cable, attach a Power Over Ethernet adapter if needed (there’s one in the box), and you’re ready to go. Well, one more step: the management software.

And that software is where the Unifi shines. It’s the best management software I’ve used, and it’s cross-platform (written in Java); Linux packages are available. Adding a new AP is a matter of plugging it in, clicking “adopt” when it shows up on the management screen and, well, that’s it. Upgrade all your APs’ firmware? Done. Want to add a new network, unencrypted but with a captive portal? And deploy it to the “public” APs but not the “private” ones? No problem. And DHCP requests are fed through to your existing DHCP infrastructure.

There are several models: the basic AP costs about the same as a high-end normal access point, and is slightly cheaper if bought in a pack of three. Other models are much more expensive and I haven’t purchased them for my own use: the AP LR (long range), which under UK transmission power limits isn’t noticeably better than the standard model; the AP Pro, which does 5GHz as well as 2.4; the AC (which does 802.11ac for even higher speeds); and the AP Outdoor.

I’ve been running on Unifi for about four months now. I’m getting higher transfer rates than ever before, and IPv6 works perfectly.

10/16/13 -- Roger Bell West