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Old 17th December 2019
Gear Maniac
sin night's Avatar

I don't know much the "network" market (it's not my job), but I think I never seen a "home" switch/router in rack format.

A 19" wide router would allow way more ports than needed by the average home user (at least in the same room)... while the network attached devices are growing in every house, I think such switch/router would still be a waste of space/money for the average user.

Then, most of us want/need wifi: you can rackmount a switch/router, but you need to place the wifi antennas in a accessible place, where they have little to no obstruction (so, in my opinion, definitely not in a rack). So you would need to buy an access point and connect it to your racked switch/router (which adds to the final cost).

Modems, as far as I know, are integrated in home routers (that's not to say those modems are always cheap - sometimes they are pricey - but I consider them as home/soho devices) or sold as a dedicated device (but in the last few years they have become harder to find in popular stores where I live, it seems people just buy a wifi modem/router).

If you want to pursue your goal of racking a home router, I would buy a shelf and attach the router with zip ties of velcro and then put a blind panel in front of the rack.

Plan your network connections ahead, because it looks like a nightmare disconnecting a cable from a router attached to a shelf (a real rack-mounted router is probably easier to access). I would probably bring some network connections to the front of the rack (there are panel-mountable rj45 female ports, but I think they are not very cheap and you would have to build your cables to connect them to the router on the shelf... and, if you need to attach a rj-45 male connector to a cable, you need a crimp tool, which I think it costs around 15 € at least - I spent around 20 € for mine a few years ago). Or at least keep one or two long spare cables hanging from the side of the rack, in case you need them (I have a Gigabit switch in my home studio sitting on top of a high shelf and I have two spare cables in stategic places of my studio to connect a laptop whenever I need it).

Also, plan a way to quickly turn on and off the switch/router. Sometimes you may need to reboot it and it would be troublesome to reach the back of a rack (again, an I/O switch on a blank panel could do the job).

I don't know if this is worth doing it, to be honest.

At home, I have a wifi modem/router near the phone, then I have a 8 ports gigabit switch in my studio located elsewhere in the house. It's enough for my needs (studio computer, nas, ethernet midi, two spare cables, a powerline to have a solid network connection to the main modem/router instead of using wifi) and I still have room to grow my studio network... that small gigabit switch does the job and takes very little room, I don't see myself racking it...

Just my opinion, of course!