Buying a new router

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nitro001

Regular Contributor
All,
So I currently have a AC3100 and it works fine; however, I am moving and I have to leave the router behind. So in the market to update.
I know the AX88U and AX58U are supported models now that support the AX standard, and technically the AX56U but the firmware is out of date so concerned it may not be maintained.

Can anyone share their experiences with either of these routers running Merlin, or something to replace the AC3100 with? If nothing better, may have to just get another 3100, but want to make sure it is supported for a few more revisions and doesn't get dropped due to SDK's not being released any longer.

Thanks in advance.
 

K-2SO

Very Senior Member
AX88U if it fits your budget. AX58U as cheaper alternative. Avoid AC86U due to low reliability history. AC66U B1 is a low cost AC alternative.
 

Kanji-San

Regular Contributor
I second the AX88U. I upgraded from an RT-AC68U and both have performed flawlessly.
 

Smokey613

Very Senior Member
Other than 1 time upon initial Merlin install on my 2019 model, both my RT-AC86U routers have been rock solid. I have no complaints.
 

taffeys

Regular Contributor
I purchased my AC86U one year ago tomorrow. It has only suffered the reported problems a couple of times. But I do admit I am now prepared to resurrect it again, if needed. But Merlin says it suffers from a hardware flaw. My new AX58U as an AP has had no issues at day three. All I can note is that it's wireless performance (range/power) is slightly less than the AC3100 it replaced (due to failure) at the same exact location. I will continue to tweak settings, etc. to see if any improvements are possible. The AX86U cost me less than half of what I would have to pay for an AX88U. I have no WiFi 6 clients so I do not see any reason to throw money away now without any real benefit for my network on a router that might not ever support the final WiFi 6 standard.
 
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K-2SO

Very Senior Member
But Merlin says it suffers from a hardware flaw.

This issue, not critical for most users:


Some RT-AC86U like to die instantly though. No resurrection possible.
 

johnkramorbhz

New Around Here
I have both AX88U and AX58U, but they serve different purposes. First of all, they both works very well. If you care about 4x4 MIMO, faster CPU, 1GB RAM, and LACP(Link Aggregation), then get AX88U. If you only intend to use it to connect the internet then both of them works perfectly given that you will not use QoS on a more than 100Mbps network. Otherwise, get an AX88U.

I would rank AX88U over AX58U. Avoid AX56U and AC86U if you can.
 
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taffeys

Regular Contributor
This issue, not critical for most users:


Some RT-AC86U like to die instantly though. No resurrection possible.
When I purchased my AC86U this was not widely known. Since my network is all local to me this possibility is not an issue for me. If such a failure occurred all I would need to do is reconfigure the AX58U to a router and swap a cable. Then obtain another router but not an AX88U (the AC86U is still covered by warranty). I would consider another ASUS AX router but not until ASUS releases a final WiFi 6 certified router. I am thinking there will be final WiFi 6 certified APs on the market before ASUS can get such a router to market. I have the hardware components to build a stand-alone high-performance router sitting on my bench now. Software is the easy part. We shall see.
 
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K-2SO

Very Senior Member
Yes, @taffeys. The 2 routers escape plan. This is what I did when the first AC86U failed. When the second failed I quit the game. :)

 

taffeys

Regular Contributor
Yes, @taffeys. The 2 routers escape plan. This is what I did when the first AC86U failed. When the second failed I quit the game. :)

I am prepared to do the same. I've got so much hardware I could jump right now. But I am an ASUS guy; motherboards, displays, etc. They are capable of producing some very good CONSUMER products. I learned the hard way thanks to D-Link and Netgear. If this AC86U or AX58U fails prematurely it will be the end of ASUS for me.
 
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nitro001

Regular Contributor
Thank you all! It seems for now I may be getting the AX58U (AX3000). The AX88U's are out of stock around me and I have been noticing a few issues in the forums with them after the .19 update.
There are still a handful of the AX58U's around.
 

taffeys

Regular Contributor
There are still a handful of the AX58U's around.
Only a few near me. One store said they had two on-hand but when I tried to order for pick-up a pop-up said please confirm with the store that they have one. So I found a better deal online (not Amazon) with free next day delivery. :)
 

nitro001

Regular Contributor
OK... So I purchased one of the AX3000's which is just a rebranded AX58U. I then updated to the latest 384.19 firmware and it worked fine for the first day. However, after that I started having frequent drops with both the 2.4 and 5 GHz channels where it would show connected then no internet so would disconnect on devices.

I tried the usual fixes I saw. Split the names, disabled 2.4GHz to focus on 5GHz first. Set channel to 80MHz and forced control channel to 64 (Scanned and not used elsewhere). Also tried channel bandwidth to 20MHz. Changed Protected Management to Disabled and to Capable. Disabled Roaming Assistant, Disabled Beamforming, Disabled MIMO options, Disabled Agile Multiband, Disabled Wi-Fi 6 mode. On the 2.4GHz channel, I set bandwidth to 20/40 MHz and channel to 7 (Not used). Disabled Protected Management Frames, disabled Multiband, disabled airtime fairness, disabled MIMO, disabled beamforming.

It will work for a while, then just disappear. Wired LAN works without any issues. And it isn't consistent when it dies and the 2.4 and 5GHz bands don't seem to die simultaneously.

Not sure if it is the router of the .19 firmware, so I just downgraded to .18 to see if that corrects it today. Otherwise since I wound up disabling so much, I may be better going back to an AC3100 while I am still within my 30 day return.

Also I am now in an apartment complex that has several wireless signals nearby so not sure if something else is knocking me off either.

Any ideas?
Thanks in advance.
 

RMerlin

Asuswrt-Merlin dev
64 is a DFS channel, your router will be forced to leave it whenever it detect radar signals. Use a non-DFS channel instead.
 

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