Possible TP-Link Budget Upgrade

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mikejs11

Occasional Visitor
I have a single-story 3100 sqft house (roughly square shape). My current router is an old TP-Link Archer C7 V2, and it is placed near the SE corner of the house. I have Fios 500/500 internet. Right now the 2.4 ghz signal easily covers the entire house (and a large part of the yard), but I don't get great speed from it. The 5 ghz has okay signal through maybe half of the house. We have Xbox Ones and 1 Roku Ultra connected to the 5 ghz, and the majority of other devices (Amazon Echos, phones, various other items) connected to 2.4 ghz. I then have two Roku Ultra's connected to powerline devices (max speed they get is around 80 mbps) because the 5 ghz doesn't have good signal strength where they are located.

My goal would be to get the 2 Roku devices off of powerline and onto 5 ghz. The current signal is almost strong enough in those locations to use wifi, but currently I get slightly better performance with the powerline. I'd also just like better performance in general on the wifi.

I was considering purchasing the TP-Link Archer A9 as it is only around $79 currently. Would the newer hardware along with Wave 2 features potentially give me the range/speed/performance boost I'd be looking for?

Would anybody recommend any other sub $100 routers that would be better than the A9?
 

mikejs11

Occasional Visitor
Oh and before anybody asks, the reason I'm looking to spend less than $100 is because I'm considering upgrading to an AX router in a year or so.
 

L&LD

Part of the Furniture
Find an RT-AX88U on sale and upgrade now instead. :)

No $80 router will hold up your current network for another year. :)
 

mikejs11

Occasional Visitor
My super-old, super-cheap router is ALMOST good enough right now. I'm just looking for something that is more than good enough for the near future.
 

L&LD

Part of the Furniture
We're almost saying the same thing. :)

Either stay with what you have as long as you can, or buy something more than good enough.

All you're going to do is make a $300 router a $400 router along with a year of further borderline performance. :)
 

mikejs11

Occasional Visitor
Okay, fair enough. So, what would I be gaining by going with an Asus (like the one you recommend) vs going with a TP-Link Router? For instance, the TP-Link AX6000 is about the same price as the Asus RT-AX88U. I frequently see people recommend Asus routers, but why exactly?
 

L&LD

Part of the Furniture
@RMerlin support, first and foremost for me! :)

Not to overshadow the excellent scriptwriters on these forums too that work closely with RMerlin to give a finished product that is more than the sum of its parts.

There are a few threads/posts about why RMerlin is superior in these forums, but when you also add the extended support Asus offers (including collaborating with RMerlin too as needed) for their routers, the excellent amtm utility and the easy access for beginners to scripts that would (previously) easily overwhelm them from the many contributors like @thelonelycoder, @Jack Yaz, @kvic, @Adamm, @ColinTaylor, @FreshJR, @Xentrk, @cmkelley, @themiron, and so many, many others I cannot possibly remember them all before I've had my coffee right now! :)

Use my guides or the excellent guides by others here too to properly set up your Asus router for the first time. You can find a few of my guides here: https://www.snbforums.com/members/l-ld.24423/.

The beta and alpha testing programs that RMerlin opens from time to time are also a great benefit to not only test fixes for any issues you may have at a particular time with your router, but to also help squash bugs and give back to this community too.

In the consumer/prosumer space, Asus stands head and shoulders above anything I have tried/tested in the past 5 years. Not only with code that is actually updated with more secure versions on their end but also by the efforts of RMerlin and the other scriptwriters that not only squash bugs that Asus misses but actually extend the products' capabilities in a useful, efficient and pleasing way.

Just the beautiful reporting capabilities that 384.15 Alpha 1 allows for the scriptwriters in the GUI is worth it. :)

You may eventually need more than what an Asus/RMerlin supported router offers (and @Trip and others can help immensely there if needed with their excellent knowledge of commercial/enterprise solutions), but you won't find an equal or even a poor second choice with any other consumer/prosumer router that I know of today. :)

To do this properly; buy from a reputable source where you can easily exchange/return a product if it really doesn't help you achieve your current and near-future goals. Once you have the router on hand, come back and ask questions as needed to help you quickly get the most from your new Asus router. ;)
 

Budgeter

Occasional Visitor
Hmm, your house is about 17 x 17 meters, so only 1 Archer C2300 can cover it perfectly, given that it is put in good location and your house structure doesn't block signal that much. You should be able to use most if not all of your 500/500 plan on 5Ghz too. It can goes down to $89.99 if you can find it on sale.

A year ago, I set up my friend's home (about 21 x 15 meters, or ~ 3850 sqft) network with this router, which is put near the center of his house. He has gigabit plan and at the worst location (1 floor down), we could get about 300-400 mbps (5Ghz - 2 streams). Fyi, in my country, the houses are all made from concrete, that's why signal decreases so much.

Or you can consider Archer A10, which is around $110 at this point, but it may suffer if you have too many devices.

I would agree that it's kinda tough to utilize 500/500 plan + many IoT devices on A9 v6.
 

mikejs11

Occasional Visitor
From a range standpoint is the Archer C2300 better than the C7 V2? I understand that it is faster and more powerful. I've never had a router with beamforming, so I don't really understand how much that helps.
 

Budgeter

Occasional Visitor
I've never had used C7 V2 so I'm not sure, but theoretically, C2300 should be better. At least it is way better than my C1200.
 

mikejs11

Occasional Visitor
Does anybody have any experience with the TP-Link Archer AX3000? I'm curious how that would compare to the models already discussed.
 

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