AX58U vs AX82U, I can't really tell the difference

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exe163

New Around Here
I am upgrading my main router of RT-AC68U. Asus seems to be the natural choice since I can repurpose the 68U as a mesh node for our rather large house where internet comes in at one corner (currently on repeater mode with an old N router). My network speed of 150 Mbps is rather slow by today's standard so peak wifi transfer speed is not a main concern. We have 3-4 max concurrent active users doing your typical streaming, browsing, gaming loads usually don't stress the total bandwidth that much; plus a dozen smart home devices that ping occasionally. Latency, however, had been a frequent issue since the gaming clients seemed to stutter even with QoS enabled when other active users are on. Getting reliable signal on the other side house is also a challenge especially for video calls.

So, I am looking for an upgrade and to create a real mesh from my poor performing repeater setup. The two routers, AX58U vs AX82U, look very similar on paper with a rather large price gap. Is the AX82U/AX86U worth extra $60/$90 premium over the AX58U? From reviews, the only advantages seemed to be faster transfer speed (both exceed my internet bandwidth), and slightly longer range. I know few years down the road I will need to upgrade again to 6E standard. Other "Features" seem pretty gimmicky at best. Thoughts?
 

1ceLaz0r

Regular Contributor
Not worth it. Buy another ac68u to create better Ai mesh and wait another year for 6E to become standard
 

Mainerunr

New Around Here
I am upgrading my main router of RT-AC68U. Asus seems to be the natural choice since I can repurpose the 68U as a mesh node for our rather large house where internet comes in at one corner (currently on repeater mode with an old N router). My network speed of 150 Mbps is rather slow by today's standard so peak wifi transfer speed is not a main concern. We have 3-4 max concurrent active users doing your typical streaming, browsing, gaming loads usually don't stress the total bandwidth that much; plus a dozen smart home devices that ping occasionally. Latency, however, had been a frequent issue since the gaming clients seemed to stutter even with QoS enabled when other active users are on. Getting reliable signal on the other side house is also a challenge especially for video calls.

So, I am looking for an upgrade and to create a real mesh from my poor performing repeater setup. The two routers, AX58U vs AX82U, look very similar on paper with a rather large price gap. Is the AX82U/AX86U worth extra $60/$90 premium over the AX58U? From reviews, the only advantages seemed to be faster transfer speed (both exceed my internet bandwidth), and slightly longer range. I know few years down the road I will need to upgrade again to 6E standard. Other "Features" seem pretty gimmicky at best. Thoughts?
From what I can tell, the 58U is 2x2 on both 2.4 and 5Ghz while the 82U is 2x2 on 2.4 but 4x4 on 5Ghz
 

aurizn

Occasional Visitor
Both RT-AX82U and RT-AX58U use the same BCM43684 for the 5Ghz radio.

The last time I tested the RT-AX3000, it is capable of running 4x4 when using PCE-AC88.

I do not have a Wi-Fi 6 4x4 device to test but there are actually 4 FEMs connected to the 5Ghz radio. Interesting situation here.
 
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RMerlin

Asuswrt-Merlin dev
RT-AX82U uses the BCM43684 radio for the 5Ghz channel.

The performance is highly superior over the BCM6755 SoC built-in 5Ghz radio.
The RT-AX58U uses the BCM6750 2.4 GHz wifi, but a separate BCM43684 5 GHz radio.

The RT-AX56U is the one that uses both 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz radio from the BCM6755.
 

aurizn

Occasional Visitor
The RT-AX58U uses the BCM6750 2.4 GHz wifi, but a separate BCM43684 5 GHz radio.

The RT-AX56U is the one that uses both 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz radio from the BCM6755.
I made a mistake here, was confused the RT-AX58U to the RT-AX56U. Thanks for correcting me.
 

JWoo

Regular Contributor
The RT-AX82U and the RT-AX58U (and RT-AX3000) share the same FCC ID (https://fccid.io/MSQ-RTAXJ300). It seems like the differences (other than snazzy LEDs for the RT-AX82U) are just marketing. The HW as tested by the FCC is the same. @aurizn may be correct that all are 4x4 on the 5Ghz band. @RMerlin do you intend to have one build for all 3 variants?
 

RMerlin

Asuswrt-Merlin dev
The RT-AX82U and the RT-AX58U (and RT-AX3000) share the same FCC ID (https://fccid.io/MSQ-RTAXJ300). It seems like the differences (other than snazzy LEDs for the RT-AX82U) are just marketing. The HW as tested by the FCC is the same. @aurizn may be correct that all are 4x4 on the 5Ghz band. @RMerlin do you intend to have one build for all 3 variants?
If it has LEDs, it means it requires a separate firmware, with its own sets of proprietary binary blobs.

Same FCC ID only mean the same radio design, does not mean they can use the same software, or have the same non-radio components.
 

jsz

Regular Contributor
Only difference should be potential range (more benefitical on AC clients). 82U should perform better at 25+ feet.

58U is limited to 2x4 config according to thiggins, 82U is a full 4x4 enabled radio.
 
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SoCalReviews

Senior Member
I am upgrading my main router of RT-AC68U. ...Thoughts?
I upgraded my personal and business routers from the RT-AC68U/P series to the Asus RT-AX86U. The difference in performance for me was remarkable. The AX86U has much better range, connectivity and performance at longer distances. It reaches areas of my home that the AC68U/P routers did not. Both 2.4Ghz and 5Ghz bands showed noticeable improvement but the 5Ghz band performance is especially stellar.

The feature that you seem to be concerned with is latency and the AX86U is the lowest latency router I have ever used and most others reviewing this router agree. If you are a gamer and spend a lot of money (up to $70 per game) and a lot of time on gaming then do yourself a favor and spend that extra money on the AX86U. I believe it's well worth the extra money compared the the lower cost Asus AX routers. It will support AX/Wifi 6 clients coming out in the next few years including the PS5 and it will give you more time to decide if you want to upgrade to the next generation of routers in three or four years.

If you do decide to purchase an AX86U I suggest you use a simple set up with Smart Connect disabled, have separate SSIDs for 2.4 and 5Ghz, no need to set QoS settings... try letting the router handle it automatically and most of the other settings you can keep as default settings including leaving AX enabled, 160 Mhz channel width enabled, auto channel select enabled, etc.. You can set for WPA3 enabled or use only WPA2 (which is how I have mine currently set). One of the Ethernet LAN ports is labeled specifically as a low latency specific "gaming port" if you choose to use it that way to connect directly to a gaming console or gaming PC.
 
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JWoo

Regular Contributor
Only difference should be potential range (more benefitical on AC clients). 82U should perform better at 25+ feet.

58U is limited to 2x4 config according to thiggins, 82U is a full 4x4 enabled radio.
Interestingly, @aurizn states that the RT-AX3000 (and by inference RT-AX58U) was tested as 4x4. This makes sense as both the RT-AX58U and RT-AX82U share the same number of antennas and same BCM43684 5GHz radio and same FCC ID. I don't personally have any wireless adapters beyond the Intel AX200 so I cannot test 4x4 on the RT-AX58U. Companies do this alot. Netgear had a whole line of routers neutered in software that they sold at COSTCO.
 

jsz

Regular Contributor
Interestingly, @aurizn states that the RT-AX3000 (and by inference RT-AX58U) was tested as 4x4. This makes sense as both the RT-AX58U and RT-AX82U share the same number of antennas and same BCM43684 5GHz radio and same FCC ID. I don't personally have any wireless adapters beyond the Intel AX200 so I cannot test 4x4 on the RT-AX58U. Companies do this alot. Netgear had a whole line of routers neutered in software that they sold at COSTCO.
The AX58U and AX3000 are the same. The only difference I can see is that the 58U is Taiwanese made and the AX3000 is Vietnam. At least thats US Market.. In Europe AX58U is made in china.

It should be a similar PCB, but not 100% identical. I think the AX82U shares PCB parts and configuration with the TUF-AX3000.. which has a reinforced RJ45 jack section and different amplifiers on the 2.4G section in comparison to the Chinese AX58U.

All of these fall under the same FCC ID and use the same 4x4 Radio its just the AX3000 models are disabled down to 2x4.


Performance is different between 82U and the other models because of this. To clarify, the 4x4 router pushes the signal further regardless of being limited to 2x2 clients.
 
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digits n bits

Regular Contributor
I’ve used both the RT-AX58U and the RT-AX82U. I have the RT-AX82U hooked up right now. So far the RT-AX82U is much faster than the 58U and has far better range than the 58U. I have a really long return window so if the RT-AX86U goes on sale next couple of months I’ll grab one of those and swap it out.
I have the LEDs in front turned off they freak out my dog at night.
 

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