ZenWiFi AX XT8 - Have I made a mistake?

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Mutzli

Very Senior Member
First thing first
  1. XT8 will not get as great support as RT-AX86U or RT-AX88U
  2. I am using RT-AX88U for 1 and 1/2 years and even this thing has been a buggy mess as of today. Third class reliability all round.
  3. Asus makes excellent hardware. But when it comes to software, these routers bounce hard and fall into cow dung
  4. You can still buy Zen XT8, but you will forever continue to be a beta tester and keep fingers crossed hoping that everyday on waking things work as they should.
  5. Simple things like PPPOe, DDNS and more complex things like Dual WAN are unreliable at best.
I own two AX88U router and both with Merlin's firmware installed and half a dozen scripts running. Both router perform excellent even with high memory usage scripts running such as Snort or Suricata. What are some of the reliability problems that you're experience?
 
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wardie

Occasional Visitor
I have a pair of XT8 running with a wired backhaul and latest production firmware. So far they’ve been more stable than what they replaced (AC5300 and AC86U) and fast. I did make sure I factory reset them after firmware upgrades. I await the next firmware which has AI Mesh guest networkInt in it, which will be useful for me.
 

rjbarker

Occasional Visitor
I'll get home from work in a few days and be setting up the XT8's ....Im curious if the wireless backhaul will work very well if the Node is about 15ft away but on the lower floor with Router on the floor above....hardwood flooring......I may also keep them on the same floor but about 20 ft apart (wall between them)...then put a AX88U on the lower floor more in "line of site" with the 2nd Node......really wish I could hardwire the Nodes .....but there is no way....
Dont understand why new home builds there isnt more thought into running Cat Cables....at the very least between floors!
 

wags1

Regular Contributor
I'll get home from work in a few days and be setting up the XT8's ....Im curious if the wireless backhaul will work very well if the Node is about 15ft away but on the lower floor with Router on the floor above....hardwood flooring......I may also keep them on the same floor but about 20 ft apart (wall between them)...then put a AX88U on the lower floor more in "line of site" with the 2nd Node......really wish I could hardwire the Nodes .....but there is no way....
Dont understand why new home builds there isnt more thought into running Cat Cables....at the very least between floors!
My xt8 node is about 35’ away from my xt8 router, one floor above. The node is in one of our guest bedrooms and the router is in my office. Several of rooms between the two. The wireless backhaul is “Great”.
 

rjbarker

Occasional Visitor
My xt8 node is about 35’ away from my xt8 router, one floor above. The node is in one of our guest bedrooms and the router is in my office. Several of rooms between the two. The wireless backhaul is “Great”.

Well that's good to know...ideally thats similar to how I want to set mine up....main router middle floor in my Office at one and then the node one floor below in the middle of the floor (hallway) ..my AC68U was not bad, but had to get an Extender for the lower floor......I have the Ax88U bnib and am really just planing on returning it....thanks for that.
Also, Im one that tends to "set it and forget it".....I'm not looking at all the options and tweaks in the GUI...nor do I "OCD like" constantly check my WiFi speeds thru Ookla etc on every device from every location......I do get annoyed when Im watching a movie off my Network and see "buffering"...hate buffering ;)
 

JagoUK

Regular Contributor
I have just ordered the XT8 based on the reviews I read. I wanted a mesh wifi but also wanted to separate out the 2.5 and 5 ghz networks which the XT8 allows me to do. However, here I am reading lots of comments from people having problems with this router but they are issues I do not really understand - for example, things to do with backhaul etc.(I know what the backhaul is just not what the issues are)

I am beginning to think this router might be too problematic, is that the case? I would appreciate peoples honest opinions. My current Netgear R7800 behaves flawlessly, never drops connections and I hardly ever touch it, it just doesn't have the coverage I'm looking for.

Thanks.
I had to return mine as the backhaul was useless due to weather radar.
See review in my sig for more details.

I'm waiting on 6e version.
 

JagoUK

Regular Contributor
Just over 5km as the crow flies.

Picture3.jpg
 

rjbarker

Occasional Visitor
Just over 5km as the crow flies.

View attachment 27918

Interesting..I'm a Mariner and use both X Band and S band Radars extensively.... X Band is 10 Ghz and S Band 3 Ghz.....I live very close to both the Ocean and an Airport...lots of vessel traffic within 1 kn or so and aircraft within may 3 km...Aircraft RADAR and Airport RADAR both operate around the 2.5 Ghz to 3 Ghz Bands.....Here in Canada Wx Radar operated generally in the same frequency range as both Aircraft and Ships...although some may operate n the 5.6 Ghz range........I havent had any "apparant" issues with my current Routers in the 5 Ghz Band.........fascinating ...got me thimking about my 3cm and 10 cm Radars on the ship ;)
 

JagoUK

Regular Contributor
Interesting..I'm a Mariner and use both X Band and S band Radars extensively.... X Band is 10 Ghz and S Band 3 Ghz.....I live very close to both the Ocean and an Airport...lots of vessel traffic within 1 kn or so and aircraft within may 3 km...Aircraft RADAR and Airport RADAR both operate around the 2.5 Ghz to 3 Ghz Bands.....Here in Canada Wx Radar operated generally in the same frequency range as both Aircraft and Ships...although some may operate n the 5.6 Ghz range........I havent had any "apparant" issues with my current Routers in the 5 Ghz Band.........fascinating ...got me thimking about my 3cm and 10 cm Radars on the ship ;)

I used to use S band and L band for work.
Shouldn't cause an issue as not same frequency.

The issue is the weather radar does use the same frequency in some of the 5ghz range as wifi does.
 

jmpr

Regular Contributor
First thing first
  1. XT8 will not get as great support as RT-AX86U or RT-AX88U
  2. ....

What do you mean with "will not get as great support as RT-AX86U or RT-AX88U"?

Less frequent asus firms? no merlin yet? (I see more frecuents firms in other models, don't know the reason).

I have been using XT8 for months in single router mode (no need Mesh), with perfect results. Perhaps problems would start if using mesh.

It has all devices by wifi (about 20), and a vpn server. No problem at all never.
 

mathmos

Occasional Visitor
A few days in and everything working ok. No backhaul issues so far.

The only oddity I have come across is my wife's work laptop. For some reason it just does not see the wifi networks from the XT8. Every single other device in the house just automatically connected to the relevant SSID apart from her laptop! If I look to see what WiFi networks are available from her laptop it sees several from around us but neither of ours.
 

wags1

Regular Contributor
A few days in and everything working ok. No backhaul issues so far.

The only oddity I have come across is my wife's work laptop. For some reason it just does not see the wifi networks from the XT8. Every single other device in the house just automatically connected to the relevant SSID apart from her laptop! If I look to see what WiFi networks are available from her laptop it sees several from around us but neither of ours.
That is an odd one for sure. Only thing I can think of is do a complete power off and then back on of her laptop (not just a reboot) and make sure her wireless adapter driver is up to date.
 

JagoUK

Regular Contributor
A few days in and everything working ok. No backhaul issues so far.

The only oddity I have come across is my wife's work laptop. For some reason it just does not see the wifi networks from the XT8. Every single other device in the house just automatically connected to the relevant SSID apart from her laptop! If I look to see what WiFi networks are available from her laptop it sees several from around us but neither of ours.
I had this with a work laptop. Was using an older intel WiFi driver. Updated it and then found XT8 fine.
Just need to convince her IT dept to update the driver...
 

rjbarker

Occasional Visitor
XT8 ......, now set up....3rd day no issues. My house is 3 levels 4300 sq ft....main router on middle floor and Node on 1st Floor.
Although I figured I would not use the Asus App to set up (as I always do this stuff in the GUI), but tried the App and what a breeze.....maybe 2 minutes max...done...
 

mathmos

Occasional Visitor
Am now about week and a half in and everything still working great. Issue with wires work laptop is a driver issue specifically called out in an Asus KB article, now as JagoUK said, need to get her IT dept to install it.

Thanks all to everyone who commented, so far I have no regrets.
 

ninjabob

New Around Here
Just getting my pair ready for return to Amazon. I have apologised profusely to my ageing RT-N66 with Merlin Firmware that has performed flawlessly for the last 8 years. All sorts of issues with the XT8 - dropping connections, USB Drive (SMB for Sonos) has to be plugged in and out to remount it every time you make a small change to router setting (not requiring a reboot). All sorts of other weird stuff going on culminating in my Sonos Boost (wired and reserved IP) dropping off and having to be unplugged and plugged back in for all my Sonos units to re appear (Sonos Mesh).

Interestingly these issues creep up with time from the last reboot, starts off ok then ..................

Hopeless but very fast routers.

Someone please tell me of a whole house system I can create with ASUS Routers (I am so used to the UI) that we be as reliable as my trusty Dark Knight but with a decent speed boost?
 

Curado Kev

Occasional Visitor
Got the ZenWifi XT8 in summer and I knew as with all new ASUS products, they need a couple firmware updates to work out bugs. I live in a 2,400 sq ft house and main modem/master router in upstairs bedroom and node is directly below the master in the living room. After firmware update a couple months ago, it works great and the backhaul does not disconnect at all. As with all ASUS routers - I'm on my 4th one in a few years - I have it reboot twice a week.

What's great about ? With my last router - AC5300 - the 5 ghz range would not go outside of the house. With this setup having the node on bottom floor, the 5 ghz signal extends out to my front porch and back patio with no issues. The range extension is what I wanted and it works great !

As mentioned on this forum many times, never use smart connect and make sure you have a network for 2.4 and 5.0 channels. I did lose the Merlin firmware support, but I don't use all the bells and whistles that many of the hard-core users on here use.

It's a great system, but don't think you can put the nodes over 30-45 ft apart on a diagonal basis, Because over that - they do not work well with this set of routers in my experience. For all of us here, that are network enthusiasts - ASUS products are great. But for all my friends and non-techy family members. You can't beat the Netgear Orbi products, I have suggested those to a few friends and they work extremely well and easy to use but not all the "techy bells and whistles".
 

happyshow

Occasional Visitor
I was rough using the XT8 at first but after the latest firmware released this past September the XT8 has been very stable and working great for me.
 

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