The home network is now the most important system a modern custom integrator can offer their clients. Luxul, an IP networking company owned by Legrand, is working to provide integrators and consumers with high-performing and flexible solutions like remote monitoring. CE Pro's review of a trio of Luxul networking products shows the company is up to the task of meeting the rigorous needs of integrators.
Looking to improve both the integrator and user experience, Luxul added remote management via the Domotz platform, its Router Limits content management, and its Roam Assist to help facilitate a more seamless wireless connectivity experience.
Trying out the Epic 3, along with the XAP-1510 WAP and PDU-8, I set the trio of Luxul products up in my home to see how they handle supporting Crestron, Lutron, Sonos systems, as well as streaming media and traditional data signal transmission.
Luxul Epic 3 Router, XAP-1510 & PDU-8 Features and Installation
The Epic 3 router can be used for homes and small businesses, and features 4×4 MU-MIMO (Wave 2) technologies, as well as the ability to accommodate up to two more WAPs, and VPN remote access.
It also includes dual-band wireless AC, 2.4GHz and 5GHz beamforming, four LAN ports, and a USB 3.0 port.
Moving on to the XAP-1510 WAP, this access point incorporates 802.11ac wireless technologies up to 1,900Mbps, along with concurrent dual-band with beamforming options built in.
- Epic 3 (XWR-3150) features Domotz remote management, Router Limits content management, dual-band wireless capabilities
- XAP-1510 (AC1900) is a dual-band wireless access point (WAP) that includes concurrent dual-band beamforming
- The PDU 8 Power Distribution Unit provides remote management with a total of eight outlets
- System designed to support a range of home network and light-commercial network installations
The access point is PoE compatible, and it provides other options such as remote network management capabilities, guest network options, and it is compatible with Luxul’s XWC-1000 wireless controller.
Wrapping up the trio of components is Luxul’s PDU-8 Power Distribution Unit.
Designed as a 1U rack-mount device, the PDU-8 incorporates MOV-based surge and spike protection. The PDU-8 provides integrators with web-based individual outlet control of its eight rear-mounted outlets and a single front-mounted outlet.
The PDU-8 features startup and shutdown with remote sequencing, and integration with third-party control systems.
The set up of the Luxul components could not have been any easier, and it is the only network system I’ve encountered that I can say confidently that absolutely no networking experience is needed to execute the installation of the system.
After uninstalling my existing networking setup, I started the new installation with the router.
I like the fact that Luxul incorporates wall and tabletop placement options with the router. The only limitation with those options is the router’s power cable, which is short and its right-angle connector limits the practicality of those placement options. A longer, straight connector would make placement much easier.
System configuration is a real strength of employing Luxul networking gear. Following a quick setup procedure, I started the configuration by changing the SSID names of the Luxul components.
Next, I configured security settings like encryption standards and passwords. After rebooting the router, I went back into the setup and entered the wireless controller AP assignment options. I quickly assigned the AP to the router and rebooted to make the changes permanent.
With that, the system was completely set up, and I would estimate that breaking down the old system and installing the Luxul system took about an hour.
Luxul Epic 3 Network Performance & Conclusions
As probably one of the first people to deploy the Epic 3, I did have to endure some firmware updates issued to address some performance and Domotz integration issues.
Post-update, I saw performance speed that was in line with my previous system, but through the Roam Assist technology and general coverage capabilities of Luxul components, I did quickly grow to appreciate the system.
The seamless connectivity of the Luxul system is a feature that is easy to overlook, but going back to a system with less cohesion is something users will definitely notice.
My experience found the products deliver a nice area of coverage, which is something homeowners and business owners will appreciate.
Additionally, the remote options that Luxul provides via Domotz are definitely a user-friendly feature, since Domotz is a very comprehensive remote management tool that allows users to drill down to see network activity; it offers test and diagnostic tools, and it provides the ability to even enter device interfaces to make changes without leaving the Domotz environment.
I found it took a few minutes to become familiar with it in terms of navigation, but once I did, it was easy to navigate. My only real criticism of Domotz is the account information, as it is a little bit confusing purchasing credits and knowing the exact terms of your account status.
Concluding my experience with the components is the functionality of the PDU-8. What can I say … it works as advertised, and through Domotz I was able to configure the unit with all of the outlets on because it was also protecting a Sony TV, my kids’ Nintendo gaming system, the router, a Luxul switch, and a soundbar.
Adding everything up, I can without question see why Luxul has seen its adoption rates grow among dealers. The system is quick and easy to install, it’s flexible and supports a range of applications, it delivers wide and seamless coverage, and its inclusion of Domotz delivers high levels of customer service without having to roll a truck to perform basic tasks.
Prices available from Luxul representatives.
CE Pro Verdict
Installs quickly and easily
Domotz remote management is comprehensive
XAP-1510 delivers a wide area of coverage
System has received several firmware updates to address various items
Domotz consumer experience in registering the software isn’t as clearly defined as other solutions
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