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I was going through a datasheet of an HPE M210 802.11n Access Point. According to the specs it has 2 internal antennas and supports 2 x 3:2 MIMO. My question are: 1) is it actually possible to have 3 receivers given that there are only 2 antennas 2) in this particular case 2 x 3:2 MIMO consists of only 2 radio chains, right?

Thank you in advance

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I'm not familiar with the description "2 × 3:2 MIMO", but to answer your first part,

1) is it actually possible to have 3 receivers given that there are only 2 antennas

Yes, absolutely. One receiver connected to each antenna, and one receiver connected to both. (As long as they are receiving and not transmitting, and the right sort of dividers/combiners are used for the interconnections, they will not interfere with each other). Each receiver is connected to a different combination of antenna elements and will therefore have a different pattern.

In general, given an antenna array with $n$ elements, any subset of those elements could potentially be useful, so you have the powerset of combinations or $2^n - 1$. (Minus one because having no antennas connected is of course not useful.)

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    $\begingroup$ I think a true MIMO like 802.11n digitally combines the antennas in the optimum fashion. If it's 2x2, then the two antennas on each end are used to create two orthogonal streams of the full bandwidth each. So there would be only a small benefit to adding a third receiver with only a linear combination of the two. $\endgroup$ – tomnexus Dec 9 '15 at 19:42

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