MBX Max Mini at a convention center

Hello there, community!

I’m now the proud owner of an MBX Max Mini, thanks to the great team at West Networks. They sent me an eval unit, and you know how it goes: once you try it, you can’t live without it. The primary motivation for purchasing it was to bond cellular connections in locations where wired or Starlink connections aren’t available.

We have a convention event soon where a dozen individuals will be online with tablets and laptops. I’m not sure if any of you work with convention center connectivity, but a 50meg connection is (discounted) $50,000 for a three-day event. Yes, $50,000 for three days of internet access. The cost of an Ethernet cable is $60. What a nightmare. If you order a month in advance, it costs $1000 per megabyte; alternatively, it costs $1250 per megabyte if you wait until the last minute.

I saw a few different configuration options on the MBX and wanted to hear from the community about which ones I should consider. My usual use case is rural transient pop-ups, so this is new. I intend to go to the venue early and conduct a site study and testing in the precise location where we will be stationed for the conference to gauge all of the carriers.

I realize that a busy convention will have a different performance than an empty cavern, so I’ll try to arrange it when another convention is taking place to get a more accurate evaluation.

-If one carrier is dominant and fast, (maybe the venue has a DAS), run the MBX with a couple of pre-paid data cards from that carrier and put one in each slot. Run a card all the way out and then roll to the next pre-paid card. Replace with fresh cards if data gets low.

-If AT&T and Verizon (for example) both offer good (but not amazing) speeds, connect them together and use both carrier sim cards to get the combined better (I know, not 200% better) speed.

I’m not concerned with packet-level redundancy or FEC as much as I want a reasonable speed for clients.


-If all I want is great speed from two combined cellular connections, do I need to utilize SpeedFusion to bond them together without using any FEC or redundancy, or will it just automagically achieve that if I have them both as Priority A and let the MBX do the magic without being connected to the Cloud?

  • Is there a better way to do this? Saving $30-$50k and not giving into this cartel pricing gives me some allowance and flexibility.

I’m open to any configuration ideas anyone has about the best way to do this.

Thanks, everyone!

Hello @Doug_Mason,
If you check me out on LinkedIn or our company; you will see we have been doing a variety of exhibitions and conventions ourselves lately.

Here is some high-level guidance:

  1. Have different SIMs from independent providers for each modems Slot A.
  2. Have spares in the B Slots with more alternatives or the opposite of the A Slots.
  3. Spin up a FusionHub within a high-capacity DataCentre (such as AWS).
  4. Create a SpeedFusion Tunnel from your exhibition router to your FusionHub.
  5. Create an outbound traffic rule directing your required traffic from your new router via your new FusionHub.
  6. Change over from the antennas that came in the box to something like the Pepwave Mobility 40G antennas or the Pepwave Maritime 40G antennas.

For more details or if you want it configured for you, the West Networks team that supplied you with your router will be able to assist you. Please note that almost all Peplink Partners charge for configuration services.

Happy to Help,
Marcus :slight_smile:


Great advice, Marcus. Thank you!

Have you found that you can eek enough performance over cellular carriers to give you sufficient bandwidth? I’m trying to avoid the $1000/meg charges. It seems doable.

At a basic level, do you need to route to a FusionHub to get the carrier+carrier bandwidth bonding? It would make sense. I can’t imagine it being done otherwise because you can’t reassembly the packets.

Thanks again for the real-world suggestions!

btw - noticed you are in Australia - do you have a US presence for on-prem stuff? Just want to build up my contact list for when in a pinch and need a paid consultant.

Hey @Doug_Mason! I wanted to check in and see if you’ve made any progress on this. I really want to do the same thing for our conventions. Were you able to successfully achieve this?