I got a lot of questions about what Unifi products people should buy, depending on their house, the number of network devices and maybe even network cameras. So I figured, it’s maybe possible to calculate what products you need based on a couple of questions.
The form tries to find the best value for your money, taking into account the number of wired and PoE devices. The form isn’t perfect, but for most home networks it should do fine.
For the router, I suggest the Edgerouter ER-X or ER-X-SFP. The advantage of the SFP is that has 5 passive PoE ports that can be used to power the Unifi Access Points (Lite or LR) and the Unifi Cloud key. We can’t utilize all the 5 ports, because we still need to connect our internet to the router and we need one ethernet port to connect the switch.
Unifi Network Planner
Total wired devices: 1 (without PoE)
Total devices with PoE: 2 (Access points, Cloud key and/or Unifi Camera’s.)
Total devices: 5 (inc router, switches and optional cloudkey)
Unifi Switches Explained
In the calculation for the switches I mainly check the amount of required PoE devices. We utilize the PoE ports of the ER-X-SFP and have to take into account that one port on the switch is needed to connect the switch to the router.
Some switches come with SFP ports. You could use those ports, with a correct adapter, to create an extra Ethernet port. But taking that into account gets too complicated. (adapters are relative expensive, $15 – $30).
I also use the available Ethernet ports on the router to connect the wired devices. If you want to create a nice, clean network cabinet, I recommend that you only connect the client to the switch. This will give you the best result when it comes to cable management.
Unifi Cloud Key
If you are not going to use the Unifi Camera’s then the Unifi Cloud Key Gen 1 is more then sufficient for home use. The Gen 2 is 4x faster, but also almost $100 more and for a home network, you really don’t need the extra speed.
The Unifi Network Planner isn’t perfect, but it will give you a good starting point for your network. The amount of access points really depend on the layout and structure of your house. In general you can start with an Unifi AC LR and add additional AC Lite’s to it where needed.
If you have any questions, comments or detected a mistake in the planner, just drop a comment below.