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ASUS RT-AC66R vs. RT-AC66U

Discussion in 'Wireless Buying Advice' started by SeattleScott, Oct 4, 2012.

  1. SeattleScott

    SeattleScott New Around Here

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  2. lodestone

    lodestone New Around Here

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    RT-AC66R vs RT-AC66U

    I've been asking this same question. I don't have a definitive answer yet, but here's some more info to add to the conversation. I just called ASUS customer support (812-282-2787) and asked. The representative told me that anytime they sell a product through Best Buy, they change the last character of the product number to an R. She says the only difference is that RT-AC66R is the product sold through Best Buy and RT-AC66U is the product sold directly from ASUS.

    I'm not entirely sure what to think about this. When I compare the products on ASUS's site by using the Product Comparison tool, there are differences. Specifically, the RT-AC66R lists more features in the Network Standard, Encryption, and Router Special Features categories.

    To see what I'm talking about, click "Add to Compare List" on both the following product detail pages:
    http://usa.asus.com/Networks/Wireless_Routers/RTAC66U/
    http://usa.asus.com/Networks/Wireless_Routers/RTAC66R/
    Then click "Compare Now" on the pop-up window.

    I'm not experienced enough with wireless networking to tell whether these differences mean a lot, and I would greatly appreciate input from someone more knowledgeable.

    Thanks,
    Jason
     
  3. SeattleScott

    SeattleScott New Around Here

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    Thanks! That makes sense.

    I noticed something else that makes me think the Best Buy version uses newer hardware. The ASUS RT-AC66U uses Utility version 4.2.6.0 (6/13/2012). The ASUS RT-AC66R uses Utility version 4.2.6.5 (9/16/2012).
     
  4. ruggb

    ruggb New Around Here

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    I have a "U"

    I just checked my U and it has the RADIUS wireless encryption, so I am guessing that they R identical. The utility may be specific to BB and have some BB ads, etc. in it.
     
  5. sowen

    sowen Occasional Visitor

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    I suspect the difference is in name only, so BestBuy doesn't have to do price-matching with anyone else. They do this often, including between subsidiaries (BestBuy and Futureshop, one owner, different model numbers on identical stock so you can't get a price-match).
     
  6. Poseidon

    Poseidon Regular Contributor

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    Not true. Best Buy matched the price of the RT-AC66U on Amazon with their own RT-AC66R model. Saved about $20 or so. So they WILL 'price match' the U and the R models.
     
  7. PrivateJoker

    PrivateJoker Very Senior Member

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    From the horses's mouth here it is, I did a comparison on Asus's website.. . .some weird stuff here, definitely some that I dispute like 802.3u which is fast-ethernet auto-negotiation is definitely present in both, and I believe 802.11i is WPA!

    I'd be interested if someone who has an R can photograph the bottom in a slightly high res photo to share w/ us.

    Also according to Asus's own info, owners of the AC66U should be ready to flex some serious muscle cause that router is weighing in at a claimed 30lb! Best Buy must get the lightweight racing edition.
     
  8. PrivateJoker

    PrivateJoker Very Senior Member

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    That's really weird and it appears to be totally accurate, every single Asus router sold natively at BB has an R, every non R Asus wifi device on their site isn't actually sold by them.

    I wonder why that is and also why not go with, you know, maybe a B or a BB suffix? ;)
     
  9. F5ing

    F5ing Regular Contributor

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    I think I had read that the "R" stands for Retail. Though I don't recall ever reading about what the "U" stands for (Unretail or Universal?).

    I had run across a number of threads on this forum about this when I was wondering about the difference between an RT-N66U and an RT-N66R.

    Bottom line was that the devices were identical (other than how they were being sold). I recall RMerlin confirming this as well.

    Trying to compare specs of two different devices on a manufacturer's website can truly be hit or miss. I find they often "miss".
     
  10. stevech

    stevech Part of the Furniture

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    RADIUS is an authentication method, not an encryption method. RADIUS is found mostly in enterprises that have a RADIUS server affiliated with an LDAP authentication server, i.e., this being a professional AAA system.
     
  11. Gushwa

    Gushwa New Around Here

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    There actually are differences!

    The RT-AC66R has additional Network Standards, which the U doesn't have.
    (IEEE802.11D, IEEE802.3, IEEE802.11I, IEEE802.11E)
    I would consider that a plus.
    Under ENCRYPTION, the R also has two more modes.
    (Radius with 802.1x, WPS Support)
    Also a plus.
    Now, the only thing that would worry me, is the OPERATING FREQUENCY,
    Where the U operates at the normal 2.4GHz/5GHz,
    The R Operates at a variable frequency 2.4GHz~2.4835GHz
    Which I would assume is OK since it hits the 2.4 (Low end)
    But the high end starts at 5.1GHz thru 5.8GHz.
    What would worry me, is if the device your using only picks up the 5GHz,
    and not 5.1, it would default to the slower 2.4GHz.
    Correct me if I'm wrong.
    http://i611.photobucket.com/albums/tt194/Gushwa/ASUSRT-AC66U-R_zps531aba1e.jpg
     
    Last edited: Apr 10, 2014
  12. randymadden

    randymadden Occasional Visitor

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    Also at Newegg

    The general consensus seems to be that they're effectively identical; but I did see an R for sale at Newegg as well. So it can't be just a BB thing.
     
  13. sfx2000

    sfx2000 Part of the Furniture

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    It's the same router...

    Different model number to keep folks from cross-shopping for Price Matching...

    sfx
     
  14. doczenith1

    doczenith1 Regular Contributor

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    Hmmm, not to dig up an old post but currently on Amazon the ASUS RT-AC66U sells for $169 (73 sellers) and the RT-AC66R sells for $135.99 (5 sellers). The opposite effect happens on the RT-AC68. The "U" is $30 cheaper than the "R". What in the heck is going on? How am I supposed to recommend a router to a friend with this nonsense :)
     
  15. jegesq

    jegesq Very Senior Member

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    Just tell your friends to buy the cheaper ones. The "R's" are identical to the "U's" and if you can get one or the other for less, buy it.
     
  16. hnoor0055

    hnoor0055 New Around Here

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    Last edited: Apr 4, 2016
  17. RMerlin

    RMerlin Part of the Furniture

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    Just as a heads-up: the days of U SKUs being identical to the R SKUs might be coming to an end. Based on what I found in recent source drops, the RT-AC5300R will have hardware differences from the current RT-AC5300 SKU. This will confuse a lot of people unless they change to a different model ID before launch time :(

    But for now, N66/AC66/AC68/AC87 all share the exact same hardware with both the U and the R SKUs.
     
  18. sfx2000

    sfx2000 Part of the Furniture

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    Sounds like a big Costco buy....

    (Costco can put enough pressure on vendors based on shear volume - not just Router/AP's, but anything that they think folks might buy - care for a big-screen "twin pack" at $1200USD - they'll sell you to 60 inch UHD TV's at that price...)
     
  19. MarkJohnson

    MarkJohnson New Around Here

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    I always thought the R models were the refurbished ones?

    Other than that they seem the same.

    Mine semi-died to today. I turned off the router with the power button, and now the button won't stay on. Weird as I've only used that button a couple of times.

    Anyone got a link to fix this button? I hate to buy another router, but I guess it is better. Maybe the 5300 or another AC66U?

    It lasted a little over 3-years (bought 3/12/2013), now I know why only 2-year warranty. lol
     

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