Some two years after the release of the RP-AX56U range extender, Asus finally made available the better version, the RT-AX58U.
This brief take will compare the two and help you decide which to get. But if you are in a hurry, the RP-AX58U is an easy pick, considering it comes with the same affordable price tag of $100.
However, if you live in areas where DFS channels are not reliably available, the new Wi-Fi broadcaster has no advantage over the previous model — in this case, the two are essentially the same.
Asus RP-AX58 vs RP-AX56: The same range extenders for the most part
These two Wi-Fi extenders look exactly the same and are actually so, with one exception: The latter features twice the bandwidth on the 5GHz band on a good day, thanks to the support for Wi-Fi 6’s 160MHz channel width.
On the inside, both are modest 2×2 Wi-Fi broadcasters with a single Gigabit port. They share the Asuswrt firmware with identical web user interfaces and feature sets. Either can work as a Wi-Fi repeater (extender), media bridge, access point (for a wired home), or an AiMesh satellite node.
That said, if you want to find out what the RP-AX58 can do, my review of the RT-AX56 explains it all.
Ultimately, how much better a broadcaster the RP-AX58 is versus the RP-AX56 depends on if you can count on the former’s 160MHz support. And the way Wi-Fi 6 works, chances are you can’t every day, or more precisely, everywhere. We’ll get there in a bit.
In the meantime, what you sure can count on is that the new broadcaster will at least be the same as its older cousin, as shown in the table below. There’s no situation where it’s worse.
Asus RP-AX58 vs RP-AX56: Hardware specficications
|Full Name||Asus RP-AX56 AX3000 Dual-Band Wi-Fi 6 Repeater||Asus RP-AX56 AX1800 Dual-Band Wi-Fi 6 Repeater|
|Dimensions||5.91 x 3.43 x 2.83 in|
(15 x 8.71 x 7.18 cm)
|5.91 x 3.43 x 2.83 in|
(15 x 8.71 x 7.18 cm)
|Weight||6.7 oz (190 g)||6.7 oz (190 g)|
|Wi-Fi Bandwidth||Dual-band AX3000||Dual-band AX1800|
|5GHz Wi-Fi Specs|
|2×2 AX: Up to 2.4Gbps |
|2×2 AX: Up to 1.2Gbps |
|2.4GHz Wi-Fi Specs|
|2×2 AX: Up to 574Mbps|
|2×2 AX: Up to 574Mbps|
|Wireless Security||WPA, WPA2, WPA3||WPA, WPA2, WPA3|
|Mobile App||Asus Router||Asus Router|
|Web User Interface||Yes||Yes|
|Available Operating Mode||Access Point (AP)|
|Access Point (AP)|
|Mesh-Ready||Yes (AiMesh 2.0) with wireless or wired backhaul||Yes (AiMesh 2.0) with wireless or wired backhaul|
|Gigabit Port||1x LAN||1x LAN|
|Release Date||February 2023||February 2021|
|Price (at Launch)||$99.99||$99.99|
Asus RP-AX58 vs RP-AX56: The nuanced differences
On the surface, with the support for the 160MHz, the RP-AX58 is clearly better than the RP-AX56. In reality, that depends. The devil is in the details.
For one, if you live in an area where DFS channels can’t be used reliably, such as near an airport, the two are the same broadcasters. The RP-AX58 would use an 80MHz channel with a ceiling Wi-Fi bandwidth on the 5GHz band of 1.2Gbps anyway.
Secondly, if you use them via wired backhauling, which is recommended, their Gigabit port is the bottleneck. You’ll get the sustained rates of sub-Gigabit at most out of either, regardless of how fast their Wi-Fi speeds are.
So, the only situation where the RP-AX58 is clearly better than the RP-AX56 is when:
- You use it as a wireless extender / AiMesh satellite node or a media bridge. And
- The use of the DFS channels is reliably available. And
- The original broadcaster (router or AiMesh primary router) also supports 160MHz
So, it’s quite narrow the area where the RP-AX58 is better. But it never hurt to get it over the older model.
Asus RP-AX56/58 Repeaters' Rating
Reliable and relatively fast Wi-Fi (for the specs) with good coverage
Can work as an Access Point, a Media Bridge, an Extender, or an AiMesh node (via wireless or wired backhaul)
Convenient design, excellent web interface
Modest 2×2 specs; only one Gigabit port; no Mulit-Gig support
Bulky for a snap-on device
The Asus AX3000 Dual-band Wi-Fi 6 Range Extender is a compact, convenient Wi-Fi broadcaster for those needing to scale up Wi-Fi coverage with modest bandwidth needs.
It works especially well for homes with an existing Asus AiMesh router and is worth its current $100 price tag.
If you’re pondering between it and the older RP-AX56 model, there’s no situation where the RP-AX58 would hurt, and in relatively rare cases, it can be significantly better.
But it seems Asus has made it easier for everyone by discontinuing the RP-AX56 — it still works and gets support but is no longer readily available for purchase. In other words, the RP-AX58 is meant to be the replacement instead of an alternative. And in that context, it’s excellent.