WiFi Mesh system for Roon - Orbi vs Velop

Hi all

Just wanted to know if anyone has had experience with both the Orbi and Velop WiFi mesh systems? Perhaps you tried one and it wasn’t a great experience with Roon and moved to the other?

Or if you’re really happy with one of them, please also let me know.

I’m potentially needing 4 units around a 2-story house, to use with multiple Roon endpoints. It’s too big a job to wire this house with ethernet and powerline adapters have been hit and miss.

I’m in Australia and we don’t have the eero here yet, so I wanted to keep this to the Netgear Orbi vs Linksys Velop.


Hmmm it seems the Orbi is not a real WiFi mesh system

I need the nodes to talk to each other, not just the router.

I’m in the same position, trying to decide on a mesh or mash-like setup to replace my old AirPort Extreme and AirPort Express.

In my case, I think Orbi would be okay, since I live in a three-story townhouse, and it would be very convenient to put the router on the middle floor and then have the satellites above and below. However, Orbi’s quite expensive compared to the competition, and I think I’m going to get some pushback on the appearance of the units from SWMBO. Right now, Velop is in the lead, but I’m keeping my eye out for more reviews of the new Eero Pro system (which is also on the pricey side).

Thoughts/recommendations from others are most welcome. I just want to have really good WiFi coverage on all three floors and relatively easy setup/maintenance. This is all part of an infrastructure upgrade in preparation for adding two more Roon zones.

How much space do you need to cover? Orbi isnt mesh but it is fast, the dedicated back haul channel works faster in many tests than mesh, where the speed can drop as you connect more nodes

I have around 100sqm per floor and one unit each floor is perfect, I can get the same speed as wired Ethernet everywhere, and most of the garden.

The only issue would be locating them if you want to use the Ethernet ports to connect the Roon ready devices. In that case, mesh would be more convenient.

It’s a large space, 250sqm per floor, two floors.

But the modem is downstairs at one end of the house and the main listening room is right at the other end of the house.

Upstairs are another 2 Roon endpoints and again at complete opposite ends of the house.

And obviously plenty of walls in between. Eep ! lol

No possibility to hardware some of it, that might make things more manageable.

Yep was thinking that, possibly running ethernet from the modem (front of the house) to the middle of the house will make things much more manageable and much cheaper than running ethernet to all points.

Even then, would need one Orbi router in the middle and 3 Orbi satellites

The price may still be close to running ethernet to all the endpoints. Might need to get some ethernet installation quotes.

The problem with spending cash on all these mesh points is there is still risk of dropouts. I read a post by someone on this forum who didn’t have a great time with a WiFi mesh system (with Roon). So then I have to weigh up, perhaps it’s worth spending 20% more (or whatever the difference is, depending on quotes) for Cat 6 and no risk of dropouts.

I use the Orbi system in our home. Main unit is in lower level adjoining my main stereo/multichannel system. I have a satellite on the first and second floors of our home. They are hidden, so no issues with appearance or size.

Best wifi system I’ve had in our home. I previously used a traditional ASUS RT-87U router and repeaters. It didn’t work well for Roon plus you end up with different wifi SSIDs depending on location in the home. Confusing and not successful.

I have wireless RPi3s all over the house and with the Orbi, I can stream DSD 128 to the second level of the home with no cutouts. 6,700 square feet, so a good sized space to cover.

Plus, Orbi allows all settings as a regular Netgear router. In particular, I use JRiver/JRemote for outside of our home and this requires port forwarding settings, which some of the mesh network products don’t support. JCR

Ultimately cat6 is going to be best but a you able to find anywhere that will let you try the orbi. Amazon allow 30 day returns in most places if they stock it near you?

If it works it would save a lot if cabling!

Not those, but I use Eero, with great success.
Six nodes.

(I had trouble with one room, where Roon would play fir a few minutes and then stop. Couldn’t understand it. Troubleshooting: pulling a long wire worked fine, so t was clearly the wifi. But the Eero app showed four bars for that node. Then one day, Eero updated itself. And the problem went away. No clue what was going in, but it works now.)

I’m using 3x Goggle WIFI and loving it. I have one on each floor, 1 nest camera, 2 nest outdoor cameras, Phillips hue lighting. 2 Apple Tvs. Bluesound power node, pulse & pulse mini. All running wirelessly. Roon core is hardwired. Mesh networking fixes everything that’s wrong with traditional wireless networking.


I’ve recently gone from an AirPort Extreme to Google WIFI and it solved all the drop out issues I was having. According to the dashboard there are about 16 things vying for bandwidth in the house (Nest, Pi roon endpoints, Apple TV, etc).

My core is running wirelessly.

Yep I was considering this. There is a retail store with pretty good returns policy. It would take 1 day to test it out and hear if it handles 24/384 reliably around the house.

The length of cabling isn’t the issue for me because I’d get a professional to do that. But the cost of 4 mesh points may come close to the cost of the ethernet installation. I’m getting some quotes for that but I think I will try out a mesh system in parallel and return them if there is a single dropout with 24/384.

I went from Airport Extreme to Orbi to Velop. Orbi had slightly better range, but Velop has been absolutely flawless. I have a node in office upstairs and a node downstairs in my listening area. I’ve tried virtually every configuration, and everything works brilliantly with Roon. In fact, I have been able to upsample max PCM/DSD and stream wirelessly to node downstairs without hiccup.

I use two nodes in three bedroom, two-story house. No need for a third node in my home.


Before you purchase anything I would have a look at the Orbi and Velop user forums. Reading them was enough to scare me away from both products - it seems like there are quite a number of problems and quite a few disenchanted users.

On the flip side the new Eero version 2 has just started shipping. A glance of the reviews on Amazon find a highly large percentage of users who are extremely happy. No where near the number of problems I am reading about with the Orbi and Velop systems. I have come to the conclusion, based on the reading of the respective forums, that both products still have quite a bit of work needed to make them reliable and stable

Hi Greg, as per my OP the eero is a non option for me here in Australia so I just wanted this to be about the Orbi vs Velop

Hopefully that changes in the future!

But also as I mentioned, there was one user here that didn’t have a great experience with a Mesh system with Roon. So yes I have been reading various forum comments

But a risk free trial is always handy and I should be able to try that.

After reading @guerph’s comment above, who had an AirPort Extreme like me and has tried both products I’m asking about, I’m looking to try the Velop this weekend. Lol I know, a datapoint of 1, but I think he’s the only one in this thread that’s tried the 3 products relevant to me, so that’s a great starting point for a trial.

And I’m getting quotes for a 4 point ethernet install at the same time.

My two-cents worth:

I’ve been using Orbi to stream HDTV via Plex to an aTV in a two storey wooden frame house with nary a problem. That must be some indication of it’s throughput.

Setup was easier than any other networking gear I’ve ever installed, and it’s run like a charm.

Good luck whatever you decide.

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Thanks for the feedback.

I just read that we have Google Wi-Fi launching this weekend in Australia, so there’s a 3rd option to consider.

Looks to be quite a bit cheaper too, for a 3 piece set.


Read up again on the Velop system in their user forums. Two things will quickly come to light:

  1. they released an updated firmware which is absolutely wrecking havoc with everyone’s installation. Performance has ground to a halt and people are furious that Linksys has not removed the firmware and reverted back to the prior, perfectly operating version.

  2. as for Ethernet drops that is one of the things which interested me in the Velop system - the ability to have a wired ethernet backhaul instead of a wireless mesh. The Orbi does not allow for wired backhaul - however they have finally come out and said they are officially working on a future update to allow this.

Back to the Velop it seems, according to forum posts, that the wired backhaul does not work properly. People have difficulty setting it up, and when they are successful, they find that the system will, on its own, revert back to a wireless backhaul and disregard the ethernet connections.

Someone even posted a reply from Linksys technical support admitting that even though their system allows wired backhauls they recommend wireless for hassle free performance.

I reiterate that I come away, after reading their user forums, that both systems were not ready for prime time and only released so their respective companies could get a foot into the mesh market.

I currently use an AirPort Extreme setup with three units hard wired together. I am waiting for these companies to get their acts together as I do not want to be a beta tester for them.

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All I can say is that my Velop system has worked flawlessly and I can stream high res audio from one part of my house to the other. I never have any issues streaming HD video, etc. For me, it has been money well spent. My Airport setup just wasn’t cutting it. My recommendation is buy, test and return if you aren’t happy.

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