Best ax router to purchase…

  • ATTENTION! As of November 1, 2020, you are not able to reply to threads 6 months after the thread is opened if there are more than 500 posts in the thread.
    Threads will not be locked, so posts may still be edited by their authors.
    Just start a new thread on the topic to post if you get an error message when trying to reply to a thread.

aliitp

Occasional Visitor
Hello

am finally looking to replace my isp crappy router with an AX product and keep it for years to come

coming from dual AC routers previously (router and bridge) I’ve been using them for the past 7 years…

can someone plz recommend to me preferably an ASUS router with Highest throughout possible on the new AX standard that can also work as Router/Bridge setup for potential future upgrade ?…

Budget 300-450$ for a highest end product possible with great throughout and signal strength.

thanks,
 

L&LD

Part of the Furniture
2x RT-AX86U's in wired 2.5GbE backhaul mode running RMerlin Alpha 1. There is nothing else that compares, today.
 

bbunge

Part of the Furniture
Another vote for the AX86U. The price has gone up in the past few weeks but it is still a very good router! AX86S is a bit cheaper option with fewer processor cores and half the RAM. Still, should be good.
 

aliitp

Occasional Visitor
Another vote for the AX86U. The price has gone up in the past few weeks but it is still a very good router! AX86S is a bit cheaper option with fewer processor cores and half the RAM. Still, should be good.

so how does a router like that compare to something higher end such as to link ax6600 or the multi antenna ROG router ?? Which gives better coverage ? And can the AX86U work as router/bridge setup ?

i never tried the ax band yet, what is the bandwidth (and throughout) for a client connecting using AX200 adapter ?

thanks,
 

thiggins

Mr. Easy
Staff member
In my testing, the AX86U had the edge over the GT-AX11000 in 5 GHz. The GT was slightly better on 2.4 GHz downlink and about equal on up.
Flip through the RvR plots here. Use the selector to change plots
 

BreakingDad

Very Senior Member
2x RT-AX86U's in wired 2.5GbE backhaul mode running RMerlin Alpha 1. There is nothing else that compares, today.
So that's what Sinead was singing about.
 

cryptorp

New Around Here
TP-Link has launched Archer AX72 which uses IPQ5000 dual core CPU instead of the BCM6750 CPU used in the Archer AX73, and with slightly lower performance.
 
Last edited:

thiggins

Mr. Easy
Staff member
just wondering
is this the throughput i will get when connecting with something like the AX201 ?
Wi-Fi Router Charts (smallnetbuilder.com)
The octoscope STApal is my standard STA. It uses an Intel AX200 radio and runs on an Ubuntu server platform. For 6 GHz testing I use a STApal 6E with an AX201.

So maximum throughput should be similar if you are using iperf3 to measure. If you are using an internet-based speed test, your results can be very different.
 

aliitp

Occasional Visitor
The octoscope STApal is my standard STA. It uses an Intel AX200 radio and runs on an Ubuntu server platform. For 6 GHz testing I use a STApal 6E with an AX201.

So maximum throughput should be similar if you are using iperf3 to measure. If you are using an internet-based speed test, your results can be very different.

sorry let me rephrase,

i simply have Intel AX201 on my laptop, i want to get the ASUS AX86U you guys recommended

will i get nearly 1 Gbps Wireless THroughput between my laptop and the router strictly for LAN ? thats it ! on my previous AC routers i got up to 600 Mbps (Throughput) only for file sharing on my LAN

i am not talking about internet speed by no means coz my internet speed is really slow just 100 mbps :)

another question, can i get two AX86U and set them up as Router/Bridge mode ??...

thanks,
 

thiggins

Mr. Easy
Staff member
will i get nearly 1 Gbps Wireless THroughput between my laptop and the router strictly for LAN ?
Probably not. It depends on how fast your laptop is and how you test.

Depending on what your current router is, you may not see much increase in throughput with the AX86U. 600 Mbps isn't that bad for a two stream AC/AX connection.

Yes, the AX86U supports bridge mode.
 

aliitp

Occasional Visitor
The octoscope STApal is my standard STA. It uses an Intel AX200 radio and runs on an Ubuntu server platform. For 6 GHz testing I use a STApal 6E with an AX201.

So maximum throughput should be similar if you are using iperf3 to measure. If you are using an internet-based speed test, your results can be very different.

thanks, its funny though, the AX11000 got more antennas which i thought it would mean STRONGER signal, yet the AX86 performs better / even when signal attenuates ?... Wow !...
 

sfx2000

Part of the Furniture
can someone plz recommend to me preferably an ASUS router with Highest throughout possible on the new AX standard that can also work as Router/Bridge setup for potential future upgrade ?…

I'll be the devil's advocate and suggest that one should avoid the current crop of 11ax hardware. It's early, it's buggy, and a significant amount of the WiFi6 special sauce either is implemented poorly, or not at all...

Just like with 11ac - it pays to wait for the 2nd/3rd generation of AP's before deciding to jump into 11ax

If most of your equipment is 11n or 11ac, one will not see any improvement in performance (speed, range) as compared to a good WiFi5/11ac Wave2 access point.

Here at the house, I've got two laptops with 11ax (Dell XPS15 and a MacBook Air M1), an iPhone 11Pro, and an iPad Air 4th Gen - all my other stuff out there on the wireless lan is 11n, or 11ac...80 percent or more traffic on my WLAN is 11n or 11ac - so even with WiFi6, there's no benefit.

I've got two 11ac Wave2 AP's (based on QCA IPQ8065) and they, for lack of a better word, just work - I don't have to fiddle with them, I just set them up and leave them alone.

Everyone is happy...

I've tested WiFi6 AP's based on Broadcom, QCA, and Mediatek, both on the bench, and in practical use, and to be honest, there's not a lot of difference which AP is in use.

As always, the client is much more important than the AP....
 

L&LD

Part of the Furniture
I would expect the third generation of anything to be an improvement, of course. But the current king, RT-AX86U, closely followed by the RT-AX68U, feels like that third-gen product already in real-world use.

Current Order of Recommended Routers Late 2021

If just looking to spend more money, I agree, don't. If your current network is up to par for your needs.

However, the benefits far outweigh the missed opportunity (performance) costs of waiting until they get it 'right'. If and when you're looking to replace a 'crappy' existing router, today.
 

aliitp

Occasional Visitor
I'll be the devil's advocate and suggest that one should avoid the current crop of 11ax hardware. It's early, it's buggy, and a significant amount of the WiFi6 special sauce either is implemented poorly, or not at all...

Just like with 11ac - it pays to wait for the 2nd/3rd generation of AP's before deciding to jump into 11ax

If most of your equipment is 11n or 11ac, one will not see any improvement in performance (speed, range) as compared to a good WiFi5/11ac Wave2 access point.

Here at the house, I've got two laptops with 11ax (Dell XPS15 and a MacBook Air M1), an iPhone 11Pro, and an iPad Air 4th Gen - all my other stuff out there on the wireless lan is 11n, or 11ac...80 percent or more traffic on my WLAN is 11n or 11ac - so even with WiFi6, there's no benefit.

I've got two 11ac Wave2 AP's (based on QCA IPQ8065) and they, for lack of a better word, just work - I don't have to fiddle with them, I just set them up and leave them alone.

Everyone is happy...

I've tested WiFi6 AP's based on Broadcom, QCA, and Mediatek, both on the bench, and in practical use, and to be honest, there's not a lot of difference which AP is in use.

As always, the client is much more important than the AP....

i have a single AX router and i could get somewhat around 400 Mbps in throughput but i need something faster, according to this:
ASUS RT-AX86U [RT-AX5700] - Unboxing, Look and Feel, WiFi Performance Tests - YouTube

yes you can see u to 900 Mbps throughput in File Transfers in your WLAN, also significant number of new phones are now having AX implemented (not sure on their performance though tbh..) but i do have an AX router...

I had an AC router for quite a while since day one while i bought it early stages of AC standard i never saw a lot of improvement in AC tbh, they latter on introduced MIMO *which my router doesnt support* but that was it, it was a netgear and i admit it was buggy as F**K ! so am trying to avoid netgear, is ASUS better ??...

We hardly ever saw overtime of waiting for example a 160 MHz channel width for AC standards, and that router while it was buggy as F**K it improved over time (but yeah i suffered a lot with it)

>> If most of your equipment is 11n or 11ac, one will not see any improvement in performance (speed, range) as compared to a good WiFi5/11ac Wave2 access point.

as i said am having a few AX adapters and might get more in near future, unless current AX routers will not be compatible with final AX standard, then you i might avoid them ! is that what you are referring to ?....
 

thiggins

Mr. Easy
Staff member
as i said am having a few AX adapters and might get more in near future, unless current AX routers will not be compatible with final AX standard, then you i might avoid them ! is that what you are referring to ?....
There is no incompatibilty risk here that I know of. The issue is more that some AX features (OFDMA UL, TWT) might not get enabled in older, first-to-market routers. That's unlikely to cause problems for most users.
 

aliitp

Occasional Visitor
There is no incompatibilty risk here that I know of. The issue is more that some AX features (OFDMA UL, TWT) might not get enabled in older, first-to-market routers. That's unlikely to cause problems for most users.

what are those and are they really important ?...
 

sfx2000

Part of the Furniture
The issue is more that some AX features (OFDMA UL, TWT) might not get enabled in older, first-to-market routers. That's unlikely to cause problems for most users.

Devil's advocate mode again..

Except that TWT, UL/DL OFDMA, and UL MU-MIMO are the keystone features of 11ax over 11ac Wave2...

Once one rules those out - physics takes over, and noise becomes the limiting factor again - one can only push so many bits into the stream as per Shannon.

Most client STA's are going to be 2*2:2 based, even with 11ax, so outside of someone copying large files (seriously, how many people do that all of the time???) one will really be pressed hard to tell the difference between an AP that is WiFi 6 vs one that is WiFi 5.

The 802.11ac Wave1 feature set was the key advancement in 5 GHz... nothing else has come even remotely close to Wave1 - Wave2 and 11ax are incremental improvements at best

Don't get me started on the marketeering of 6E, where the only benefit is to the chipset vendors and OEM's by doubling the number of radios sold - 6E will need to have a dedicated 6E radio forever, unless one banishes non-6E clients to the ghetto of 2.4Ghz - which obviously won't happen as consumers don't want to move backwards...

2.4GHz, not much benefit there either, as 802.11n client STA's will be the norm for many years... some chipset Vendors (MediaTek) focus their solutions outside of 2.4, reducing cost by using either 2 stream or 4 stream WiFi4 solutions. The best thing that can help 2.4GHz is to remove support for legacy modes for 11b (DSSS/CCK) and force folks to use OFDM there (11g/n) - airtime is precious, and getting rid of 11b legacy support helps reduce overhead by at least 50 percent, and even more when considering that by removing legacy in 2.4, one does not have to do multicast frames at non-OFDM rates, and we can remove the "legacy" protection modes (ERP use protection by sending 11b CTS-to-self for example).

This is essentially free, and can be done on most AP's with a software change... and on many, it's not even that, it's a config item, so it's essentially free - which doesn't appeal to the OEM's and Vendors, because then we don't need to sell more chipsets.

Getting rid of legacy support that will obviously help everyone in 2.4GHz, and this can be done solely on the AP side without changing clients, and this is actually more of an improvement than pulling in 11ax into the 2.4GHz band without having to replace client stations.

Let's be really honest about WiFi6...

Most of the real world "benefit" of 11ax is confirmation bias, where "it must be better" because one spent $500US on a router AP that has 6E and all the gubbins, except that again, the keystone features (OFMDA UL/DL, MU-MIMO UL/DL, and TWT) aren't actually implemented, or implemented badly (OFMDA-UL on Broadcom vs. QCA for example).

Again, just being the devils advocate here, not trying to be combative.
 
Last edited:

RMerlin

Asuswrt-Merlin dev
Except that TWT, UL/DL OFDMA, and UL MU-MIMO are the keystone features of 11ax over 11ac Wave2...
Being a cornerstone on paper does not equate to being a critical feature in real life applications. OFDMA for instance will only provide marginal improvements when you have a lot of simultaneous clients (and that all of them are supporting it).

AX also brings in higher link rates, which is a much more beneficial improvement in real life applications for a majority of users, as it results in significant throughout improvements. My laptop with an Intel AX200 is able to reach over 800 Mbps of throughput, versus around 650 Mbps with my previous AC-based laptop.
 

Latest threads

Sign Up For SNBForums Daily Digest

Get an update of what's new every day delivered to your mailbox. Sign up here!
Top