UPDATED: Can you mix wired and wireless Genie Clients?

Have you looked at DIRECTV’s Wireless Genie Mini Client? It’s a perfect solution for those homes with a rarely-used guest room. You can take the client anywhere with AC power, within a range of about 80 feet and through 5 walls, which means that you get great DIRECTV satellite service on the patio when you entertain, in the garage when you’re fixing the car, or anywhere else in the house where you wouldn’t think of running a coaxial cable.

Proven technology

The Wireless Genie Mini Client has been around for about four years now. A lot of folks thought it wouldn’t work, but it’s proven itself. It uses a dedicated wireless network that doesn’t have interference from all those other Wi-Fi devices you have in the home. Wi-Fi 5, as it’s now called (it used to be called 802.11ac) has a maximum throughput of well over 1 gigabit per second with the right equipment. Video through your satellite connection needs a smooth transfer speed of about 12 megabits per second. This means that even if you account for all sorts of headroom and extra space, you should easily be able to handle 25-30 wireless connections over the same network.

When the wireless client first came out, it needed the Wireless Video Bridge in order to work. This is still true if you have the older HR44 or HR54 Genie DVRs. If you have the new Genie 2, you don’t need that video bridge. The ability to connect is built right in. In fact, it’s easier to set up a wireless system with the Genie 2 than it is with a wired system and it works just as well.

Mixing wired and wireless

Over the years, many customers have called to ask if you can mix wired and wireless clients. The easy answer: YES absolutely. Your Genie can support any mix of wired clients and wireless clients.

If you have an HR44 or HR54 Genie

With these Genie DVRs, you can have up to three active clients. You can have 8 clients on your account but regardless, only three will work at the same time. The others will not connect at all while three clients are being used. The good news is that it doesn’t really matter whether they are wired or wireless. All of them can be wired, all can be wireless, or you can mix them. A Wireless Video Bridge can support 8 wireless clients connected to it, so unless you have a very large area you should not need a second one.

If you have an HS17 Genie 2

If you have the latest and greatest, it will support seven active clients at the same time. You can still have a total of 8 on your account but personally I tell people just to go up to 7 because you’ll know that they’ll all work 100% of the time. I suppose it’s your choice.

With a Genie 2 you can have any mix of wired, wireless, and 4K clients. Only two locations can be playing 4K content at once, however and as I write this there is no wireless 4K client for DIRECTV Satellite. It’s not impossible, it’s just not there yet.

Looking for advice?

The Solid Signal Blog has tons of tutorials that can help you. My favorite is the Ultimate Guide to Upgrading which can help you get your system just perfect. Check out the whole list here, and all the PDF ones are here.

About the Author

Stuart Sweet
Stuart Sweet is the editor-in-chief of The Solid Signal Blog and a "master plumber" at Signal Group, LLC. He is the author of over 6,000 articles and longform tutorials including many posted here. Reach him by clicking on "Contact the Editor" at the bottom of this page.