Overview of Cisco's Catalyst Line of 802.11ax Wi-Fi 6 and Wi-Fi 6E APs
The Cisco Catalyst family of 802.11ax (called Wi-Fi 6 and Wi-Fi 6E) wireless access points build on previous generation 802.11ac (called Wi-Fi 5) access points by delivering lower latency and more predictable performance, supporting higher client density, having tighter security, saving power for battery-dependent handheld client devices, and offering more configurability for supporting different kinds of Internet-of-Things endpoints. Cisco's Wi-Fi 6E devices feature support for the 6-GHz radio-frequency band, delivering an additional 1200 MHz of bandwidth for more than twice as much Wi-Fi bandwidth as the 5-GHz band.

Progent's Cisco CCIE Wi-Fi network experts offer online or on-premises configuration and debugging support to help you to design, implement, update, optimize, manage and troubleshoot Catalyst wireless AP deployments of any scale or topology. Progent's Cisco Wi-Fi controller experts can also help you to integrate your Wi-Fi environment with your wired network infrastructure and cloud-based resources to create a seamless enterprise-wide connectivity solution that is simple to manage and expand. Progent also offers affordable Wi-Fi site surveys to assist you to determine the most appropriate selection, location and setup of Aironet wireless access points to accommodate your unique office layout, building structure, and anticipated network traffic.

Catalyst Wireless APs Experts

Cisco's Catalyst 9100 Family of Wi-Fi 6/6E APs deliver the performance and capacity of 802.11ax technology

Cisco's Catalyst 9100 family of Wi-Fi 6 802.11ax access points are intended for deployments ranging from telecommuter homes to high-density stadiums. Catalyst 9100 access points are compliant with the 802.11ax specification, referred to as Wi-Fi 6, which in turn builds on the preceding 802.11ac (Wi-Fi 5) specification. Unlike 802.11ac, Wi-Fi 6 is able to utilize both the 2.4-Ghz and 5-GHz radio bands. Headline enhancements supported by Catalyst 9100 Series access points include MU-MIMO support for uplink traffic, dual NAVs for better reliability, TWT for reduced power usage in battery-dependent endpoints, adaptive power and sensitivity thresholds for more efficient spectrum use, and extended guard intervals for improved outdoor performance. All Catalyst 9100 802.11ax access points can run Cisco's Embedded Wireless Controller (EWC), accommodate as many as 200 clients per radio, and are powered by Cisco IOS XE Software.

Catalyst 9105i Wireless Access Points Solution Design ExpertsCisco's Catalyst 9105AXi Series Wi-Fi AP is a compact Wi-Fi 6 AP designed for operation by at-home workers or in small to midsize networks. Cisco's Catalyst 9105AXi AP supports 802.11a/b/g/n/acW2/ax and features dual 2.4/5 GH radios as well as an IoT radio covering Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) 5.0 and Zigbee. The Catalyst 9105AXi device features 2x2:2 MU/SU-MIMO and provides an aggregate top data rate of 1.2 Gbps. The Catalyst 9105AXi comes with one 10/100/1000 Base-T uplink interface with PoE 802.3at, an RJ-45 management port, and two integrated antennas. Channel width for the 2.4 GHz radio is 20 MHz and 20/40/80 MHz for the 5 GHz radio. With Embedded Wireless Controller activated, the 9105AXi AP can manage up to 50 access points and 1,000 client users.

Catalyst 9105AXw Wi-Fi 6 Access Points Planning and Deployment ExpertsCisco's Catalyst 9105AXw Series Wi-Fi AP is a wall-mount device and is targeted at hospitality, residence halls, and other high-occupancy dwellings. The 9105AXw's performance is like the Cisco 9105AXi access point but has special antenna profiles and features a variety of ports not offered on the 9105AXi device. These include a 100/1000/2500 Base-T (Ethernet) uplink interface, three 10/100/1000 Ethernet downlink interfaces, a USB 2.0 port, and one passthru port. One Ethernet downlink interface supports 10.5W PSE Power Budget.

Cisco Catalyst 9115AX Wireless Access Points Solution Design ConsultantsThe Cisco Catalyst 9115AX Series Wi-Fi 6-certified LAN AP is intended for small to midsize organizations. The 9115AX Series AP supports 802.11a/b/g/n/ac/ax and includes three Wi-Fi radios as well as an IoT radio covering Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) 5.0. The Cisco 9115AX Series AP features 4x4:4 + 4x4:4 spatial streams and supports an aggregate combined data rate of 5 Gbps. The Cisco Catalyst 9115AX Series AP includes a fixed 100/1000/2500 Ethernet (RJ-45) port with PoE 802.3at, an RJ-45 management console interface, a USB 2.0 port, built-in antennas, plus extra-cost external antennas. Memory includes 2048 MB DRAM and 1024 MB flash. With the EWC image installed, the Cisco 9115AX Series AP can manage up to 50 access points and 1,000 client users.

Cisco Catalyst 9117 Wi-Fi 6 APs Solution Design ConsultantsThe Cisco Catalyst 9117AX Series Wi-Fi access point is targeted at small to midsize businesses. The Wi-Fi 6 device works with the 802.11a/b/g/n/ac/ax specifications and includes three Wi-Fi radios as well as an Internet-of-Things (IoT) radio that supports Bluetooth Low Energy 5.0. The Cisco Catalyst 9117AX features 8x8:8 MIMO for the 5-GHz band and band. Maximum aggregate data rate is 5 Gbps. The Catalyst 9117AX includes one 100/1000/2500/5000 Ethernet (RJ-45) uplink port with Power-over-Ethernet 802.3at, an RJ-45 console port, a USB 2.0 port, and built-in internal antennas. System memory includes 2048 MB DRAM and 1024 MB flash. With EWC installed, the Catalyst 9117AX Series AP can manage up to 50 access points and 1,000 clients.

Catalyst 9120 Wireless Access Points Solution Design ExpertsCisco's Catalyst 9120AX Series Wi-Fi 6 access point is intended for for mid-size to large enterprises. The Catalyst 9120AX complies with 802.11a/b/g/n/ac/ax and includes four radios. Flexible Radio Assignment technology allows radios to run either in 2.4-GHz/5-GHz mode or in Dual 5-GHz mode. An IoT radio supports (BLE) 5.0. Cisco's 9120AX features 4x4:4 MU-MIMO and delivers a combined max data rate of 5.2 Gbps when both Wi-Fi radios run in 5-GHz client serving mode. The Cisco Catalyst 9120AX includes 100/1000/2500 Multigigabit Ethernet (RJ-45). The access point also works with PoE 802.3at and includes an RJ-45 management console port, a USB 2.0 port, and integrated internal antennas. External antennas are an option. System memory includes 2048 MB DRAM and 1024 MB flash memory. With Embedded Wireless Controller (EWC) activated, the 9120AX Series AP can manage 100 APs and 2,000 clients.

Catalyst 9130AX Wireless APs Solution Design ExpertsCisco's Catalyst 9130AX Series Wi-Fi 6 AP is targeted at mid-size to large networks and dense public environments like auditoriums and arenas. The Catalyst 9130AX supports 802.11a/b/g/n/ac/ax and features 8x8:8 MU-MIMO. External antennas on Cisco's 9130AX AP can be divided into two 4x4 radios. An Internet-of-Things (IoT) radio supports (BLE) 5.0. Cisco's Catalyst 9130AX includes a built-in 100/1000/2500/5000 Ethernet uplink interface and supports a combined max throughput of 5.38 Gbps. The device also works with PoE 802.3at and comes with an RJ-45 management console interface, a USB 2.0 interface, and integrated internal antennas. The Catalyst 9130AX AP includes a smart antenna connector that gives you the versatility to set up an external antenna to handle special venues. System memory includes 2048 MB DRAM and 1024 MB flash. With EWC installed, the 9130AX Series AP can manage up to 100 APs and 2,000 client users.

Catalyst 9136 Wi-Fi 6E APs Planning and Deployment ConsultantsCisco's Catalyst 9136 Series represents a breakthrough line of access points designed for enterprises who need the enhanced speed, client density, and cybersecurity enabled by the 6-GHz spectrum expansion defined by the Wi-Fi 6E standard. By adding 1.2 GHz of contiguous and interference-free RF spectrum in the 6 GHz band, the Wi-Fi 6E technology supported by Cisco Catalyst 9136 Series access points more than doubles the spectrum that can be used by earlier model Wi-Fi client devices. Catalyst 9136 access points support legacy 802.11a/b/g/n/ac/ax Wi-Fi devices operating in the 2.4 and 5 GHz bands in addition to the newer generation of 6 GHz Wi-Fi clients. MU-MIMO spatial streams support up to 8x8:8 at 5 GHz and up to 4x4:4 at 2.4 GHz and 6 GHz. Combined max throughput rate is 10.2 Gbps. Also included are a Bluetooth BLE 5.0 radio for IoT plus a scan radio. Built-in antennas antennas support 2.4 GHz, 5-GHz, and 6 GHz operation. Catalyst 9136 access points have two integrated 5 Gbps mGig (RJ-45) Ethernet interfaces with redundant powering. Channel width is 20 MHz at 2.4 GHz and 20/40/80/160 MHz for the 5 GHz and 6 GHz bands. System memory includes 2048 MB DRAM and 1024 MB flash memory. Power options include PoE, PoE+, and UPoE.

Cisco Catalyst 9166 Wi-Fi 6E Access Point ConsultantsCisco's Catalyst 916x Series Wi-Fi 6E APs are the first Cisco APs to offer the versatility of being managed on-site with Cisco DNA Center platform or from the cloud by deploying Meraki management utilities. This enables organizations to transition to cloud-based or hybrid management environments on their own timetable. All Cisco's Catalyst 916x APs meet the a/b/g/n/ac/ax and 6E Wi-Fi specifications and fully support the 6-GHz band. Each device includes 5 radios and supports up to 400 clients on each radio. Each AP also features a dedicated radio for Cisco CleanAir Pro for mitigating wireless interference, includes a USB 2.0 port, and offers Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE). The small-footprint Catalyst 9162 Series AP is meant for small organizations, incorporates three 2x2 radios, and includes 1x 100M/1000M/2.5G mGig Ethernet connectivity.

Cisco Catalyst APs ConsultantsCisco's Catalyst 9163E Wi-Fi 6E access point is built for tough outdoor venues like campuses or municipal Wi-Fi. The 9163E comes with three client serving 2x2 radios, one IoT radio, and a tri-band scanning radio. Interfaces include 1x 100M/1000M/2.5G mGig Ethernet, a management console port (RJ-45), 4x N-Type Wi-Fi antenna connectors, and a GPS/GNSS antenna connector. The AP supports Omnidirectional Dipole Self-Identifying Antennas. The Catalyst 9164 Series AP is designed for small and mid-size enterprises, incorporates one 2x2 radio and two 4x4 radios, and offers 1x 100M/1000M/2.5G mGig Ethernet support. The Catalyst 9166 Series AP is designed for large and medium-sized enterprises, has three 4x4 radios, and offers 1x 100M/1000M/2.5G/5G mGig Ethernet support. The 9166 also includes environmental sensors that track air quality, temperature, and humidity.

Cisco's Embedded Wireless Controller on Catalyst 9100 Series Wi-Fi 6 Access Points
Cisco's EWC is a software image running on Cisco IOS XE and offered on most Catalyst 9100 Series Wi-Fi 6 APs. Cisco's EWC supports the majority of features, but not the scale, of Cisco's Catalyst 9800 Series Wi-Fi controller appliances. Access points running EWC can concurrently service Wi-Fi clients. (Cisco Catalyst 9105AXW access points can join an EWC network and support client users but cannot provide EWC functions.) Cisco's EWC can be managed via Cisco DNA Center for multi-location networks, or via a browser or mobile app for single-site environments. All Cisco DNAC Automation and Assurance use cases are available. Embedded Wireless Controller features include always-on by deploying active and standby controllers, software maintenance updates for hot patching, auto configuration, Application Visibility and Control (AVC), and Flexible Radio Assignment.

How Progent's Consultants Can Help Your Company with Catalyst 802.11ax APs
Progent can provide access to a Cisco-certified CCIE consultant to assist you to plan, deploy, maintain and troubleshoot a Wi-Fi environment that includes Cisco's Catalyst 9100 Wi-Fi 6 APs. Progent can assist you to maintain legacy Wi-Fi access points from Cisco or migrate efficiently to the latest Wi-Fi 6. Progent's Cisco wireless controller integration consultants can help you to assess whether your Wi-Fi network should incorporate Cisco Wi-Fi controller appliances or can be managed using Cisco's software-based management tools like Cisco's Embedded Wireless Controller.

Progent's CISM and CISSP security specialists can show you how to design security into your WLAN and your company's operations. Progent's disaster recovery planning consultants and business continuity planning consultants can show you how to deploy the high availability (HA) features built into Cisco's wired/wireless technologies so your converged infrastructure delivers significant business value.

Progent's Wireless Site Survey helps you to plan and deploy a robust wireless network customized for your environment, offering a wireless solution that delivers comprehensive coverage, high speed and capacity, Quality of Service to accommodate IP video, enterprise-class security, and simplified management. Progent's Wireless Site Survey can be performed remotely to cut time and expense, or on premises for more challenging environments.

To find out additional information concerning Progent's professional assistance for Cisco technology, pick a topic: Contact Progent for Expertise with Catalyst WiFi 5 and WiFi 6/6E Access Points
To learn more about Progent's consulting services for designing, installing, maintaining and troubleshooting a wireless deployment based on Catalyst WiFi 5 and WiFi 6/6E APs, call 1-800-993-9400 or visit Contact Progent.