Review New In The Charts: NETGEAR RAX120

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Product Review

thiggins

Mr. Easy
Staff member
NETGEAR RAX120
NETGEAR's RAX120 Nighthawk 12-Stream Dual-Band WiFi 6 Router has been tested and added to SmallNetBuilder's Wi-Fi Router Charts. The sole Qualcomm-based Nighthawk in NETGEAR's RAX family sports four-streams on 2.4 GHz and eight on 5 GHz. But its 2.4 GHz performance lags behind the less-expensive RAX80 and is just about even on 5 GHz, making it not a great value. Check the Wi-Fi Router Charts for more details.

NETGEAR RAX120 vs. RAX80 2.4 GHz Rvr downlink
 

L&LD

Part of the Furniture
Another case of the spec's being better than the results.

Is this poorly written firmware or poorly executed hardware (or both)?
 

psychopomp1

Senior Member
@thiggins
Did you test using the RAX120 v1 or v2? I believe the latter uses a slightly newer QCA chipset, possibily supporting OFDMA U/L.
 

thiggins

Mr. Easy
Staff member
This was v1. NETGEAR might send a v2 for retest. I don't think OFDMA is a factor in these results, since we're talking one STA per radio.

I should also note that the router could complete only 30 seconds of the wired routing test before it locked up and had to be rebooted. I tried this multiple times. NETGEAR has not been able to reproduce this yet.
 

thiggins

Mr. Easy
Staff member
Another case of the spec's being better than the results.

Is this poorly written firmware or poorly executed hardware (or both)?
I can't say. My tests don't provide data that would allow me to tell.
 

RMerlin

Asuswrt-Merlin dev
I should also note that the router could complete only 30 seconds of the wired routing test before it locked up and had to be rebooted. I tried this multiple times. NETGEAR has not been able to reproduce this yet.
Unless you have a bad Ethernet cable that's causing electrical noise on the switch port (highly unlikely in your lab environment, pretty sure you did swap cables), I'd bet it's a hardware issue with your unit rather than a design flaw.
 

thiggins

Mr. Easy
Staff member
Unless you have a bad Ethernet cable that's causing electrical noise on the switch port (highly unlikely in your lab environment, pretty sure you did swap cables), I'd bet it's a hardware issue with your unit rather than a design flaw.
What makes you say that?
 

RMerlin

Asuswrt-Merlin dev
What makes you say that?
If it was a general design flaw, crashing routers when doing something as basic as transferring data would most likely generate a lot of complains on online forums as it sounds like a very common scenario.
 

thiggins

Mr. Easy
Staff member
If it was a general design flaw, crashing routers when doing something as basic as transferring data would most likely generate a lot of complains on online forums as it sounds like a very common scenario.
Perhaps. Keep in mind the test uses 100 simultaneous connections each up and down, running TCP/IP full blast while pinging. It's pretty strenuous.

But I hear you. I'm continuing to investigate. The RAX80 has no problem with the test, nor do all the ASUS routers I've tested.
 

RMerlin

Asuswrt-Merlin dev
Perhaps. Keep in mind the test uses 100 simultaneous connections each up and down, running TCP/IP full blast while pinging. It's pretty strenuous.
Gotcha. That's indeed a quite unusual scenario.

I assume the router has no SSH access for you to monitor things while testing?
 

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