Looking for information you can trust on Cisco Access Points that support wireless AC? Our Summit Reviews series can help you get the information you need to make the right decision for your organization’s needs.

In this post and the accompanying video review, we will be comparing the Cisco Aironet 1700, 2700, and 3700 Series Access Points that support wireless AC. While all three have different features (and price points), they all can be used either stand-alone or with a wireless controller and all are dual band (supporting both wireless and wireless AC).

The breakdown

Marketed as “Enterprise Class” by Cisco, the Cisco Aironet 1700 Series Access Point is best for smaller and mid-sized businesses and provides an easy introduction to 802.11ac at up to 867 Mbps for an affordable price.

It will also allow you to gain up to three times the bandwidth than 802.11n networks using its 3×3 multiple input and multiple output (MIMO) and two spatial streams.

Plus, you get Cisco CleanAir Express Spectrum Intelligence, which can detect RF interference and basic spectrum analysis, while it simplifies ongoing operations across 20-, 40-, and 80-MHz-wide channels.

And with optimized access point roaming, your data rates will get a boost from auto-direction that points client devices to proper access points for their coverage range.

With over 1 Gps, the Cisco Aironet 2700 Series Access Point brings the Cisco High Density Experience (HDX) technology (along with its CleanAir 80Mhz, ClientLink 3.0, optimized AP roaming, along with Turbo Performance, RF Noise Reduction, and VideoStream). Cisco deems this one “Mission Critical.”

Better for high-density situations than the 1700, this dual-band high performance AP is perfect for any small, medium-sized, or even large enterprise networks at a price point that allows you to dip your toe in the 802.11ac networking pool without a huge commitment.

  • Rugged design
  • A purpose-built chipset
  • Flexible, modular architecture
  • An integrated 802.11ac radio that supports 3×4 MIMO with three spatial streams
  • State of the art Gigabit Wi-Fi via Wave 1
  • Option for internal or external antennas
  • Allows for true digital beam forming

The Cisco Aironet 3700 Series Access Point was the first wireless access point with integrated 802.11ac Wave 1 radio to support a 4×4 MIMO, with three spatial streams.

This is Cisco’s “Best in Class”—designed to work with high-density networks and it provides a rate of up to 1.3 Gbps over a greater range (roughly triple the rates of 802.11n) for more capacity and reliability, it also supports Cisco HDX technology, including CleanAir high-speed spectrum intelligence across 20-, 40-, and 80-MHz-wide channels to optimize performance and combat wireless interference, and allows you to boost performance for all clients, with the updated ClientLink for high-density wireless networks.

Overall, the 3700 delivers high-performance in a robust mobility experience for enterprise networks that includes:

  • Innovations like the purpose-built chipset designed for mission critical, high-performance applications
  • Dual-band 2.4/5-GHz integrated radios
  • Cross AP Noise Reduction
  • Optional hyperlocation for indoor Wi-Fi
  • Optimized AP Roaming
  • Cisco CleanAir technology
  • Flexible add-ons due to modular design architecture
  • Improved downlink performance to all mobile devices with ClientLink 3.0 technology
  • Durable metal housing and extended operating temperatures, which makes both the 2700 and 3700 ideal for industrial, factory, or warehouse environments
  • Your choice of 3700i (with integrated antennas) or the 3700e (with external dual-band antennas) for more RF-challenging indoor environments

No matter what your business needs, Summit’s expert sales team can assist you in finding exactly what you’re looking for. Give us a call today and let us help you find the network solution that’s right for you.