RT-AX86U issue with intel AX210 on 5ghz band

Alecs

New Around Here
Hello,

I recently upgraded my motherboard to MSI 690 tomahawk which has an intel AX210 card.

I have an Asus RT-AX86U router, with a gigabit fiber connection. Latest Merlin 386.4
OS: Windows 11.

On 5 GHZ band my download speeds are between 0.1-30 Mbps and upload speed is 650-720 Mbps. I went through all old AX210 drivers - no change
I have tried all the possible settings in my router:
1. Wireless Mode AX only, N/AC/AX mixed, Auto
2. Channel bandwidth 160 Mhz, 20/40/80/160, 20, 40, 80.
3. Control channel Auto with auto select DFS channels, when i manually set channel 100, the download seems stable to 120-130 Mbps and upload 200 Mbps. - but it's still very far away from how it should perform.
all combinations of the above.
4. I tried changing the wifi antennas of the ax210 card - same result.

On 2.4 ghz band, i get 80 Mbps download and 85 upload - speed is normal compared with other devices in the same room.
On 5 ghz band, other devices, in the same room, 1 inch closer to pc have download speeds between 500-600 and upload speeds between 600-650. Even laptops with AX201 wifi card.
Now, the logic tells me it's not routers fault but OS/motherboard/AX210/ AX210's antennas. However, setting the channel manually in router gives better results only for this AX210 card, which i find it weird.

Has anyone encountered this weird situation with AX86U and AX210 cards?

Thanks,
 

Tech Junky

Very Senior Member
AX210 cards?
I run those in a couple of devices and have no issues with achieving wire speed @ 1gbps+

I don't run Asus though and built my network custom from the Modem....

Modem <2 x 1GE> PC/Server <2.5GE> AP

It's a bit odd though that other devices aren't having issues with throughput.

How is the AX210 connected to the MOBO?

PCI card adapter or the onboard M2 slot w/ antennas out the back?

If it's direct on the MOBO it could be as simple as needing a BIOS update as the Z690 boards shipped with half assed firmware just to get them to market. I built mine in Nov when they were released and needs an update upon install and see 2 more additional updates being released already but, why break it if it's working fine? The only issue I have with my AsRock is the BIOS POST is slow compared to the Z490 I was using before rebuilding. The other issue I had was needing to convert from BIOS to UEFI for some reason it wouldn't do a compatible boot w/o adding he EFI partition.
 

Alecs

New Around Here
Hello Tech Junky.
The AX210 is connected directly on the motherboard m.2 key-e with 2 small antennas connected directly(without wire). I've tested 2 other antennas from the old router, no change.
I did the latest bios update.

What it's odd is that the upload speed is good, it's only download speed. CPU does't go above 15%(12600k) and the windows is on an gen4 nvme SN850.
Disabling AX on the router also gives me stable 100 Mbps download on wireless, but not good enough.
Also, odd enough is that 2 laptops with AX201 are fine, mobile phones also.

I'm currently trying to install a win10 on an external SSD to test under win10 as well. Next would be a factory reset of the router, eventually to put back Asus firmware, i'm out of ideas.
 

Tech Junky

Very Senior Member
The card might just be a dud then. I wouldn't put much more energy into ripping apart everything else before replacing the card first. Spending hours on this sort of thing when it's a single device not performing well doesn't make much sense.

Everything you have mentioned points to the card not the PC / router. Amazon can probably get you a new one tomorrow and spend a couple of minutes swapping it on the MOBO and fire it up for testing.
 

L&LD

Part of the Furniture
Did you do a clean install of the OS after you swapped the motherboard?

I wouldn't bother with Windows 10 if you're currently running Windows 11. Try a clean install of Windows 11 instead and test the WiFi before you put your accounts, programs, etc. on the install.

It may be time to replace the motherboard (I would not be looking at replacing just the WiFi card on it).
 

bbunge

Part of the Furniture
MSI Z690 Tomahawk is a pretty impressive motherboard. What do you get when you connect the PC 2.5 GBe to the router 2.5 GBe?
Would seem that as a gamer you would use a wired versus WIFI connection.
Also MSI released a BIOS for the motherboard last week. Did you install it yet? And the current WIFI driver is 22.80.1.1.
Using up to date drivers/BIOS/firmware is always best.
 

sfx2000

Part of the Furniture
I wouldn't bother with Windows 10 if you're currently running Windows 11. Try a clean install of Windows 11 instead and test the WiFi before you put your accounts, programs, etc. on the install.

I was going to recommend to remove and reinstall the wifi device - that will usually grab the drivers and more importantly the intel ax210 firmware blob - there's been some changes, and maybe it didn't get updated cleanly...

But as @L&LD recommended - a wipe and reload would do the same thing, not just for the wifi card, but all of the devices...
 

Alecs

New Around Here
Hello,

@Tech Junky i did not know i could replace it, under the heatsink/AIO shield. I could try to send it to warranty first.
@bbunge I have a gigabit fiber, on cable i get 910-920 Mbps download/upload. I'm not an addicted gamer and it's a bit complicated to pass the cable at the desk, for me.
I got the latest bios from december. The few days ago date is wrongly set near the download button. Intel version 22.110.1.1 and i downgraded to 4 previous versions - all the same.
@L&LD Yes, i did a clean install of win 11. For the sake of losing more time with this i've installed windows 10 on an external SSD. Results on AX:
1643751718581.png

Cuple seconds later 30-40 Mbps dl and 350-450 upload and ridiculously unstable.
I currently set the wifi mode to auto and disabled AX in router, it's been stable for the last 2 hours @ 140-160 Mbps download and 150-200 upload - but this is far from what it's supposed to be.

Only thing that i didn't do was to restore to Asus firmware, but i think it's going to be more time lost.
 

RMerlin

Asuswrt-Merlin dev
To rule out OS/driver issues, create an Ubuntu 21.10 USB drive, and boot with it. That version supports the AX210 out of the box. See if you get better results.
 

bbunge

Part of the Furniture
While I do not have a gig WAN connection I feel that Asus firmware 386.46061 seems to work a bit better than Merlin 386.4. Right now I am on Merlin 386.5 alpha 1. Have been running this for a couple of days with no apparent issues. My WIFI 6 laptops use an AX200 adapter and with my 5 GHz set to Auto channel, 20, 40, 80, 160 MHz bandwidth it is working very well. Most of the time the router runs the 5 GHz at 80 MHz but when the laptops join the party the bandwidth steps up to 160 MHz.
You may want to try the Asus firmware but make sure to do a factory reset with initialize checked. Note that I have had problems with doing a Hard Factory Reset with the power and WPS button. The /jffs does not always clear. Also run with WPA2-Personal for your test. Use the WIFI defaults including Dual Band SmartConnect.
 

L&LD

Part of the Furniture
At this point, I hope you've returned the motherboard for another (working) model.
 

BobD

Regular Contributor
Hello,

I recently upgraded my motherboard to MSI 690 tomahawk which has an intel AX210 card.

I have an Asus RT-AX86U router, with a gigabit fiber connection. Latest Merlin 386.4
OS: Windows 11.

On 5 GHZ band my download speeds are between 0.1-30 Mbps and upload speed is 650-720 Mbps. I went through all old AX210 drivers - no change
I have tried all the possible settings in my router:
1. Wireless Mode AX only, N/AC/AX mixed, Auto
2. Channel bandwidth 160 Mhz, 20/40/80/160, 20, 40, 80.
3. Control channel Auto with auto select DFS channels, when i manually set channel 100, the download seems stable to 120-130 Mbps and upload 200 Mbps. - but it's still very far away from how it should perform.
all combinations of the above.
4. I tried changing the wifi antennas of the ax210 card - same result.

On 2.4 ghz band, i get 80 Mbps download and 85 upload - speed is normal compared with other devices in the same room.
On 5 ghz band, other devices, in the same room, 1 inch closer to pc have download speeds between 500-600 and upload speeds between 600-650. Even laptops with AX201 wifi card.
Now, the logic tells me it's not routers fault but OS/motherboard/AX210/ AX210's antennas. However, setting the channel manually in router gives better results only for this AX210 card, which i find it weird.

Has anyone encountered this weird situation with AX86U and AX210 cards?

Thanks,
I have a RT-AX86U with stock FW and 100Mbps internet, an AX210, Win 11 Pro, an ASUS Z690M mobo, an Intel 12600 cpu, and I'm getting megabit WiFi speeds. They are a bit variable but I have seen link speeds of about 1000Mbps to 2400Mbps.
My AX210 card is mounted on an ASUS AC58BT add in PCIe card. I removed the original AC9260 module and replaced it with the AX210. I used to have an MSI Z590 and the wifi on that was an AX210 built into a pluggable MSI branded metal container which plugged onto the mobo in an M2 socket. Your one may be similar. If you eventually decide that your AX210 is at fault (unlikely) then you might be able to replace it.
 

BobD

Regular Contributor
Hello Tech Junky.
The AX210 is connected directly on the motherboard m.2 key-e with 2 small antennas connected directly(without wire). I've tested 2 other antennas from the old router, no change.
I did the latest bios update.
If there is no wire then that may be the cause of your problem. The Intel AX210 has two antenna cable connections which plug on to the AX210 card.
These cables are IPEX MHF4 to RP-SMA and the antennas screw on to the RP-SMA end which shows through the motherboard I/O panel.
 

Alecs

New Around Here
Hello,

I have returned the motherboard(was in the 30 days period, a warranty check would have taken 2 weeks). and got myself the same model, brand new. Spent yesterday my day installing everything back, installed fresh win 11 just to conclude that i am facing the same issue.
@BobD the AX210 is installed in the motherboard m.2 e-key, under a big radiator - i did not open it to check, but i assume it has 2 ipex cables connected into it since it has 2 RP-SMA ports in the I/O panel. What i meant was that the 2 external antennas screw directly in the RP-SMA ports, it's not a stand/magnetic type of antenna with 2 cables like Asus or other motherboard models have.

I am literally speechless watching the AX210 PC randomly dropping to 0.2 Mbps with huge ping with a peak of 130-140 Mbps but very unstable and 2 laptops + phone stable at 500-600 Mbps.

This evening i will try:
1. Ubuntu 21.10 USB drive
2. Reset router's firmware to Asus and see if anything changes(i highly doubt). When 2 laptops and all phones are ok, it's absurd the router's at fault.
3. Thinking to buy an wifi 6e antenna, a magnetic one with 1-2 meters cord.
4. Buy and test an PCIE AX200/210 card. Was looking at Gigabyte AORUS WBAX210.
5. return to my AC1900 usb wireless card, which has stable 190-230 Mbps download speeds.
 

Tech Junky

Very Senior Member
@Alecs

Swapping the MOBO and assuming the AX210 in the process not moving it from one MOBO to the other rules out the WIFI card being the issue.

The issue is going to be in your configuration.

If you take one of your known working devices to the same location as the PC does it perform the same for speeds?
 

Alecs

New Around Here
The PC used to be in my office, 15 meters away from router, 1 wall + a door in between. But for the sake of this “troubleshoot” i’ve moved it along with a monitor 1 meter away from router, straight line.
Yes, i’ve tested the phones 1 cm away from pc’s antennas, laptops also right next to the pc.
 

Tech Junky

Very Senior Member
Yes, i’ve tested the phones 1 cm away from pc’s antennas, laptops also right next to the pc.
Being too close can be just as bad as too far. Also 2 clients being too close causes issues as well.

At this point I would default the router and reapply settings. Still doesn't work then put the OEM firmware back on the router and default again. Still not working then get a different router.

If you want to skip this then tether your phone to your PC and run a speed test.
 

Alecs

New Around Here
Thanks for the suggestion. I didn't consider to try this.
Tested 5 mins and will keep testing. Seems stable and matching the maximum that phone can do with my 5g carrier:
1643914551448.png

Protocol: Wi-Fi 5 (802.11ac)
Security type: WPA3-Personal
Manufacturer: Intel Corporation
Description: Intel(R) Wi-Fi 6E AX210 160MHz
Driver version: 22.110.1.1
Network band: 5 GHz
Network channel: 149
Link speed (Receive/Transmit): 866/866 (Mbps)
IPv4 address: 172.20.10.6
IPv4 DNS servers: 172.20.10.1 (Unencrypted)


2.4 ghz - stable, matches pretty much with what other devices get on this band.
1643914974493.png

1643917796234.png

Protocol: Wi-Fi 6 (802.11ax)
Security type: WPA2-Personal
Manufacturer: Intel Corporation
Description: Intel(R) Wi-Fi 6E AX210 160MHz
Driver version: 22.110.1.1
Network band: 2.4 GHz
Network channel: 13
Link speed (Receive/Transmit): 325/433 (Mbps)
IPv4 address: 192.168.50.169
IPv4 DNS servers: 192.168.50.1 (Unencrypted)

5 ghz:
With peaks to ~100 Mbps, spikes down to 0.3 Mbps, basically it cuts everything for couple sec.
1643915613925.png
1643915154461.png

Protocol: Wi-Fi 6 (802.11ax)
Security type: WPA2-Personal
Manufacturer: Intel Corporation
Description: Intel(R) Wi-Fi 6E AX210 160MHz
Driver version: 22.110.1.1
Network band: 5 GHz
Network channel: 64
Link speed (Receive/Transmit): 817/1153 (Mbps)
IPv4 address: 192.168.50.169
IPv4 DNS servers: 192.168.50.1 (Unencrypted)

I will try ubuntu then try to reset the router(lost my hopes :) ).
 
Last edited:

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