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Design question for CAP1602E and CAP2602E



I am building a BOM for a customer and I need to present cheaper options than 3500 or 3600 APs. I thought of these two models but I don't know what models of antennas to pick.

1602 is a 3X3 MIMO with 3 antenna connectors. How many 2.4 GHz and how many 5.8 GHz antennas should I pick for each radio?

2602 is a 3X4 MIMO with 4 antenna connectors. In this case I suppose there are 2 connectors per radio, please confirm.


9 Replies 9


Isn't the 1602i model option cheaper? Then u don't need to buy any antennas and looks prettier.

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Yes it could be an option but I still have the doubt of what models to choose.


Oh and regarding what antennas to pick, use dual band. So u will need 3x dual band antennas.

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And which are those models, I have only seen in the documentation the models separated by G or N.

I'd appreciate if you can send the part numbers.

Thank you!

I am sorry I meant G or A

Leo Laohoo
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VIP Community Legend

Hold on ... Let's take a few steps back.

You want to write up a BoM for a wireless solution and has to be affordable (check!).

Next you want 1600 (check!) ... hold on.

Why would you think you need a 1600/2600/3500/3600?  What sets apart the models I've just mentioned is CleanAir.  Because of CleanAir, you pay for premium.

Exactly WHAT is the client going to use the wireless for?  Is it indoor or outdoor?

What kind of traffic does the client see now and later (3 years down the track)?

The 1130 is the cheapest 802.11 a/b/g WAP (with internal antenna) you can still buy from Cisco.

The 1240 is the cheapest 802.11 a/b/g WAP (with EXTERNAL antenna) you can still buy from Cisco.

If you want 802.11 a/b/g/n, the the cheapest is 1040 followed closely by the 1140.  Both models have internal antenna whilst the 1260 is external antenna and with 802.11 a/b/g/n.

Playing with external antennas when you don't know how these things behave is like playing with a book of matches inside a gasoline tank.  Something will blow up. 

Hi Leo,

Thanks for all these tips.

- I have not performed a site survey yet, my customer wont approve it until they have a quote for the whole project so that makes me figure out a scenario based on experience.

- They currently have some AP1131 stand alone.

- They mentioned a lot of interference from neighbors.

- Traffic must be mainly data, no voice, no video.

- It is an indoor deployment.

- They will not have major modifications in the next 3 years.

- I know about most of the considerations you mentioned but customers always make their decisions thinking of money.

I first considered 3500 due to neighbors interference, but they rejected that option for price. Then I thought about the two models I ask in this discussion because of their antenna arrays, 3X3 and 3X4, and because on the documentation I read "challenging indoor environment" at least in one of them. And I didn't want to choose I lower model because they already have AP1131 and they are looking for an "upgrade".

But when looking at these models I could not figure out what antenna models chosse for them.

I hope you can help with this.

Again thank you for your tips.

If they have a lot of interference from neighbors you definately need to do a survey to appropriately ensure coverage and speed.  For Example: in a warehouse environment with 30 ft ceilings you get approximately 20k sq feet per AP, but that can vary greatly with ceiling height, rack height, product stored, and percentage of the warehouse that is full.  Just because you are connected doesnt mean you are connecting at wireless N speeds.  So the survey should not only include that you have a connection, but the RSSI value, SnR, and the Utilization of the channel.

You should go with the 2602i as they have built in 4dbi omnidirectional internal antennas.  If you went with the 2602E, you will need 4 antennas that will be at least another $40 each (AIR-ANT2524DW-R), ontop of the AP costing around $100 more for being the external antenna version.  The 2602i has an operating temp at 32 to 104 F, while the 2602E has a operating temp from -4 to 131 F, but other than that is not much different.

This guide will show you all available antennas, but you should go with the internal Omnidirectional and save yourself some money:

Keep in mind that to use the Cisco Cleanair functionality, you will need a Wireless Lan Controller, and for most environments with under 50AP's the 2504 WLC does the job just make sure you get the correct amount of licensing for your AP's.

If you do not need the Cisco Cleanair functionality, or the expense of the 2504 WLC, you can still get the autonomous version of the 2602i.  You will just have to do your channel selection/tx power etc manually.

Glad to help - Bill

Cool!  You provided us with more information to think about.

1.  Interferrence - What kind?  Other Wi-Fi in the area?  Microwave ovens?  Bluetooth?

2.  Data only traffic?  No Voice or video?  Looks like you can start quoting for 1040 or 1140.  So far, to keep your costs down, I have not seen the need to quote for a WAP that supports CleanAir.

3.  Indoor deployment?  You most defintely DO NOT need external antennas.  Factor the antenna out because this will jack up your costs.

One more thing ... Going back to "data traffic only".  Doesn't make any sense (sorry, I'm not aiming at you).  Companies (big or small) will soon start to consider voice once adequate wi-fi is put in.  Implementing wi-fi is like "build and they will come" when it comes to application such as voice.

Another thing:  What kind of devices does the client have that will potentially use wireless?  Laptops/netbooks?  Tablets (such as iPads)?  Smartphones?

If your response is the later two then you still don't need WAPs that support 802.11n because Tablets and Smartphones do not have the CPU power or the grunt to push 802.11n speed.

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