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Best Wi-Fi 6E Routers for 2023: Bask Your Home in 6GHz Signals Today!

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Since early 2021, Wi-Fi 6E hardware has grown like mushrooms after rain. This post only includes the best Wi-Fi 6E routers you can get today.

Some of those mentioned here can work as a member of a mesh Wi-Fi system, but they are here primarily because they work well as the sole Wi-Fi broadcaster in a relatively small area.

If you’re looking for a mesh system of the same Wi-Fi standard, they are on this list of the best Wi-Fi 6E systems.

Not all Wi-Fi 6E routers on the market make it here. This list only includes those I’d use for myself. If you want to keep your existing (Wi-Fi 6 or older) router, check out this list of the best way to upgrade it to Wi-Fi 6E.

Dong’s note: I first published this frequently-revised post on May 17, 2021, and last updated it on January 29, 2023, to add/remove applicable hardware options and information.

Wi-Fi 6E Routers
Wi-Fi 6E routers come in all shapes and sizes.

Best Wi-Fi 6E routers for 2023: The list

This list includes standalone routers and is sorted in the review order. The numbers are just numerical and not meant to be the ranking.

Some routers on this list — including all those from Asus — can work together and form a mesh system.

8. Asus RT-AXE7800: A Wi-Fi 6E router that makes sense

(If you didn’t read the intro, this is the latest member on this list β€” the number is only numerical, not the ranking.)

Asus RT AXE7800 Router Top Front
Best Wi-Fi 6E Routers for 2023: The Asus RT AXE7800 is a relatively compact router that packs a bunch.

The RT-AXE7800 is the lesser version of the GT-AXE11000 (below) and is much inferior to the GT-AXE16000 (also below.)

But it has one thing going for itself: the compact and practical design. On top of that, the performance is quite excellent. And the friendly price tag doesn’t hurt.

Asus RT-AXE7800's Rating

8.6 out of 10
Asus RT AXE7800 Router Box Content
Performance
9 out of 10
Features
9 out of 10
Ease of Use
8 out of 10
Value
8.5 out of 10

Pros

Excellent performance with tons of network settings with an excellent feature set, free online protection, and Parental Controls

AiMesh 2.0 support with Mult-Gig wired backhauling as a satellite

Super-flexible network ports for Dual-WAN and LAN/WAN Link Aggregations

Compact and practical design; relatively affordable

Cons

Only one Multi-Gig port

Middling 6GHz band


7. TP-Link Archer AXE300: TP-Link’s best router to date

The TP-Link AXE300 Wi-Fi 6E Quad-band router looks the part
Best Wi-Fi 6E Routers for 2023: The TP-Link AXE300 Wi-Fi 6E Quad-band router looks the part.

With uncompromising specs, the TP-Link Archer AXE300 has (almost) everything a home user would look for in a standalone home router.

Its only shortcoming compared to the Asus GT-AXE16000 below is that TP-Link’s OneMesh approach has no option for Multi-Gig wired backhauling.

Looking for a single Wi-Fi broadcaster? You won’t go wrong with this one.

TP-Link Archer AXE300's Rating

8.5 out of 10
TP Link AXE300 Wi Fi 6E Quad band Router other retail box
Performance
9 out of 10
Features
8 out of 10
Design and Setup
8 out of 10
Value
9 out of 10

Pros

Top-tier hardware with excellent performance; three flexible Multi-Gig ports and LAN Link Aggregation support

Robust web user interface; lots of network and Wi-Fi settings and a handful of valuable features for home users

Comparatively cheaper than competitors

Wall-mountable; useful optional mobile app; OneMesh-ready

Cons

No option for Gigabit WAN, Dual-WAN, or fast mesh with wired backhauling

HomeShield Pro requires a subscription, mobile app, and login account

Bulky design, the USB port's performance could be better


6. TP-Link Archer AXE75: Wi-Fi 6E meets affordability

TP-Link Archer AXE75 Wi Fi 6E Router Antennas
Best Wi-Fi 6E Routers for 2023: The TP-Link Archer AXE75 looks like a typical Wi-Fi router.

The Archer AXE75 is the first standalone router from TP-Link, and it’s also the first that costs less than $200 (before taxes.) To put things in perspective, it’s half the cost of the “good-deal” Netgear RAXE300 below.

In return, it’s also one of the least impressive hardware and has no Multi-Gig port. In testing, though, it proved fast and reliable enough for most homes with sub-Gigabit broadband.

TP-Link Archer AXE75's Rating

8 out of 10
TP Link Archer AXE75 Wi Fi 6E Router Box
Performance
8 out of 10
Features
8 out of 10
Ease of Use
7 out of 10
Value
9 out of 10

Pros

Fast Wi-Fi performance; good range, affordable

Wi-Fi 6E support, 160MHz channel width on both 5GHz and 6GHz bands

Standard web interface with lots of useful settings, including Dynamic DNS-based remote management

Support Time Machine backup vis USB storage, wall-mountable, OneMesh-ready

Cons

Middling Wi-Fi specs, no Multi-Gig port

Mobile app and login account required for Parental Control, QoS, and online protection

Write performance for network storage when hosting a portable drive could be better


5. Netgear Nighthawk RAXE300: Netgear’s “good-deal” Wi-Fi 6E router

Netgear RAXE300 Nighthawk Wi Fi 6E router
Best Wi-Fi 6E Routers for 2023: Netgear RAXE300 Nighthawk Wi-Fi 6E router

The Netgear RAXE300 is the lesser version of the RAXE500 (below), but it turned out in my trial to deliver a superior experience. It’s a more refined piece of hardware that’s more affordable with equally excellent performance.

Netgear Nighthawk RAXE300's Rating

7.8 out of 10
Netgear RAXE300 Nighthawk Wi Fi 6E router 1 5
Performance
8 out of 10
Features
7 out of 10
Ease of Use
8 out of 10
Value
8 out of 10

Pros

Wi-Fi 6E-ready with excellent performance

Flexible 2.5Gbps LAN/WAN port, USB-C

Robust web interface, helpful (optional) mobile app

Cool fanless, wall-mountable design

Cons

Middling 6GHz specs, no standard Remote Management via Dynamic DNS

No 10Gbps port, only one 2.5Gbps port; not-well-thought-out Wi-Fi on/off button

Limited Wi-Fi settings and online protection/Parental Controls require a mobile app and subscription

Mediocre NAS performance when hosting a portable SSD; 100-120V power adapter

4. Asus ROG Rapture GT-AXE16000: The ultimate Wi-Fi router

Asus GT-AXE16000 Quad-band Wi-Fi 6E Router
Best Wi-Fi 6E Routers for 2023: The Asus GT-AXE16000 Quad-band Wi-Fi 6E router has everything you’d want.

The Asus GT-AXE16000 is the 2nd Quad-band Wi-Fi broadcaster besides the Netgear Orbi RBRE960 (below). It has everything any user would want — as a standalone router or an AiMesh member.

It’s a safe buy as long as you can afford it. And that’s a big if.

Asus ROG Rapture GT-AXE16000's Rating

9.1 out of 10
Asus GT AXE16000 Quad band Wi Fi 6E Router 3
Performance
9.5 out of 10
Features
10 out of 10
Ease of Use
9 out of 10
Value
8 out of 10

Pros

Powerful hardware, Quad-band with Wi-Fi 6E support, three Multi-Gig ports (one 2.5Gbps and two 10Gbps)

Stellar performance throughout

Excellent set of game-related, online protection and monitoring features, full AiMesh 2.0 support

Unmatched port flexibility, including interchangeable WAN, Dual-WAN, and LAN/WAN Link Aggregations

Beautiful ROG Aura lighting

Cons

Expensive, 10Gbps ports' sustained rates and NAS performance (when hosting a storage device) could be better

Awkward backhaul band design in a wireless AiMesh setup, no UNII4 (5.9GHz) support, no SFP+

Bulky design, not wall-mountable


3. Linksys MR7500: A decent Wi-Fi 6E router

Linksys MR7500 AXE6600 Hydra Pro 6E  Wi-Fi 6E router Routers Package Content
Best Wi-Fi 6E Routers for 2023: The Linksys MR7500 AXE6600 Hydra Pro 6E router

The Linksys MR7500 is the third Wi-Fi 6E router on the market, and the third time is not necessarily the charm in this case.

The new router looks a bit subdued in design — it’s sort of mundane looking. Its hardware specs are also relatively modest compared with the first two.

It’s a router that bets a bit too big on Wi-Fi 6E, making it less useful for the mainstream market.

Linksys MR7500 AXE6600 Hydra Pro's Rating

7.3 out of 10
Linksys MR7500 AXE6600 Hydra Pro 6E Routers Feature Photo
Performance
8.5 out of 10
Features
7.5 out of 10
Ease of Use
8 out of 10
Value
5 out of 10

Pros

Wi-Fi 6E-ready

Simple design with 5Gbps WAN port

Robust web interface, helpful (optional) mobile app

Wall-mountable

Cons

Hugely overpriced

6GHz band requires Gig+ or faster Internet to be useful

Slow 5GHz and 2.4GHz bands

Limited Wi-Fi settings, mobile app coercion

No Multi-Gig LAN port, Dual-WAN or Link Aggregation

Buggy and slow NAS performance when hosting a storage device


2. Netgear RAXE500: A formidable contender

The Netgear RAXE500 is likely one of the best Wi-Fi 6E routers
Best Wi-Fi 6E Routers for 2023: The Netgear RAXE500 Wi-Fi 6E router

The Netgear RAXE500 is the second Wi-Fi 6E router on the market, and it’s the natural rival of the GT-AXE11000 below.

But within Netgear’s ecosystem, this one is quite familiar — it’s the 6E version of the tri-band RAX200.

Among other things, you’ll love the design. As such, it’s one of the most awesome-looking Wi-Fi broadcasters on the market. That’s if you can stomach the hefty price tag.

Netgear Nighthawk RAXE500's Rating

7.8 out of 10
The Netgear RAXE500 Router angle
Performance
8.5 out of 10
Features
7.5 out of 10
Ease of Use
8.5 out of 10
Value
6.5 out of 10

Pros

Wi-Fi 6E-ready

Collectively excellent Wi-Fi speeds and range

2.5Gbps LAN/WAN port, Dual-WAN, and LAN/WAN Link Aggregations

Robust web interface, helpful (optional) mobile app

Beautiful design

Fast network-attached storage when hosting a storage device

Cons

Expensive

Wi-Fi 6E is still in the early stage

No 10Gbps port, only one 2.5Gbps port

Limited Wi-Fi settings, no built-in QoS or Parental Controls

Online protection requires a subscription

Internal fan, a bit buggy (at launch)


1. Asus GT-AXE11000: The very first Wi-Fi 6E router

(In case you didn’t read the intro: This is the oldest member on this list β€” the number is only numerical, not the ranking.)

Asus GT-AXE11000 Router
Best Wi-Fi 6E Routers for 2023: The Asus GT-AXE11000 is the very first Wi-Fi 6E router on the market.

The Asus GT-AXE11000 is the very first home router to sport the all-new Wi-Fi 6E standard.

For the most part, this new router is a variant of the GT-AX11000. The two share the same design, ports, and processing power. The GT-AXE11000, however, uses a 6GHz band instead of the 5GHz-2 band. And that makes all the difference.

Asus ROG Rapture GT-AXE11000's Rating

8.4 out of 10
Asus GT AXE11000 Top View
Performance
8.5 out of 10
Features
9 out of 10
Ease of Use
8.5 out of 10
Value
7.5 out of 10

Pros

Tri-band with Wi-Fi 6E support

Excellent 5GHz and 2.4GHz performance

Excellent set of game-related, online protection and monitoring features, full AiMesh 2.0 support

2.5Gbps LAN/WAN port, Dual-WAN, and LAN/WAN Link Aggregations

Cons

Expensive

Wi-Fi 6E is not fully available

Only one 2.5Gbps port, no 10Gbps port

Bulky design, not wall-mountable, buggy firmware (at launch)


Best Wi-Fi 6E Routers for 2023: The performance chart and the takeaway

I tested Wi-Fi 6E routers the way I do all routers. For the 6GHz band testing, I use a couple of laptops running the Intel AX210 Wi-Fi chip with the latest official Windows 11 driver and a few 6E-ready smartphones.

The charts below are the scores of the routers mentioned above, in alphabetical order for easy viewing.

Best Wi Fi 6E Routers Long Range PerformanceBest Wi Fi 6E Routers Close Range Performance
Best Wi-Fi 6E Routers for 2023: Wi-Fi performances

Considering the fast speed but short range of the new 6GHz band, Wi-Fi 6E is an exciting addition to the existing 2.4GHz and 5GHz bands — it’s not a replacement for either.

The new 6GHz band is excellent for those living in an airy home or having clients close to the broadcaster. In many ways, the new band is a bridge between Wi-Fi 6 and the upcoming Wi-Fi 7, which will likely increase the range thanks to the use of AFC.

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74 thoughts on “Best Wi-Fi 6E Routers for 2023: Bask Your Home in 6GHz Signals Today!”

  1. Hey Dong!

    I’m in the market for a new router – I have a gigabit connection and am using the default router from my ISP. It’s been pretty good but I’ve noticed (not sure if it’s buffer bloat) occasional lagging/non-loading of certain websites (yahoo mail, reddit, etc.). Even my aunt complains that the videos she watches on fb occasionally “just stop” lol. I’ve tried updating firmware on my router, updating my PC/aunt’s phone, deleting the cache, etc.

    As the resident IT at home, I’m surrendering to you, an expert. I live in a small 2-br apartment – the router is in the living room and I’m a room/wall/door away from it. The route is: router > ethernet to switch > ethernet to PC. Everything else in my room is connected via wifi.

    What router would you suggest? Should I be looking at devices with fleshed-out QoS? I’m working through all your links but it’s slow-going. I’m just wondering since I saw the new MSI RadiX AXE6600 is $100 off.

    Thanks in advance, man!

    Reply
    • Perhaps consider further fault isolation before investing in new wifi? e.g. sometimes route-flap or other issues in your last-mile ISP (or their transit providers) can lead to the conditions you note. Running CONCURRENT tests from your PC when problems are observed would help you to determine if the fault is external, or in your wifi.
      In a similar vein, you could use an app on phone to PING your hardwired PC when problems are observed. ALSO you could run and iperf3 server on your PC and use an app on the phone to verify that your existing wifi is (or is not) delivering adequate throughput to the phone at its given location.

      Reply
  2. Hello Dong !

    Your website is packed with a good deal of helpful information.

    I was hoping for some quick advice.

    My Asus router is showing it’s age, thus looking for some advice to upgrade.

    My house is pretty large (5500 sq feet and 3 levels). It does have, however, cat5 to most rooms. I was looking to use the cat5 cables to β€œbackhaul” as you describe.

    I would like to stay with Asus in my upgrade.

    I was looking at the Asus ROG Rapture GT-AXE16000
    And two
    ASUS AX1800 Dual Band WiFi 6 (802.11ax) Repeater & Range Extender (RP-AX56)

    The main router on main floor, 1 access point on the floor above and one for the floor below main. Access point connected to cat5 cable for hardwired β€œbackhaul” connection.
    Is this a sound plan ?

    Reply
      • Hello Again,

        With further reading here, I am getting the feeling that I may short changing the hardware choice on the non main Router in a AiMesh set up with the above ASUS AX1800 Dual Band WiFi 6 (802.11ax) Repeater & Range Extender (RP-AX56).
        1. If I went with an Asus 6E router, is there an appropriate choice on the additional “nodes” to match the $$$ placed in the main router ? (for example going with a Asus ET Pro 12 )

        2. Same question, if I went with 6 and not 6E on the main router ?

        Again, my house is large and 3 levels but the previous owners put cat5 cable in the house. So with my reading here, I was planning using the cat5 cable to backhaul back to the main router.

        Thanks in advance.
        Maurice

        Reply
        • Maurice:
          Running with 160mhz channels may buy you more than 6E (6Ghz band).
          Cat-5e will limit you to 1Gbps backhaul speed (unless the runs between your APs and central router are very short). Avoid wireless backhaul whenever possible. (GigE is your friend; and if you had 6A or 7, 10GigE even better.)

          Even if you place multiple APs (routers in AP mode) around the house, you may not be out of the woods. Clients often do a terrible job of switching from one AP to another. (Many clients, notably android cellphones will remain associated to the previous AP even when its signal is poor and you’re sitting right under a close-by AP. Some APs allow you to FORCE-dissociate clients with low signal levels. You may need to resort to this, in order to get clients to attach to nearby APs when the clients move around the house.

          FWIW, I hardwire everything I can (even TV sets and Roku Ultra). Only the two cellphones use Wifi. I manage to get them to run about 1.4Gbps on 160Mhz channels. The hardwired PCs achieve 5Gbps, which is the ISP provisioned FTTH speed.

          To get 1.4Gbps on the wifi clients, the signal level has to be PERFECT. Direct line-of-sight, 6 to 10 feet max radius from the AP. If you walk into another room, your speed falls like a rock (even on the 5Ghz band). All the claims of super speed are bogus, unless you are in the same room as the AP. So, consider placing the APs in the places you will use your clients the most. (And hardwire all the clients that you can.)

          [As you construct your network, may I caution you to Watch for Ethernet topology loops! Even the uber-expensive ASUS gear does not implement spanning-tree/rstp protocol to guard against loops. I have an old Netgear R7800 in the living room. It is the only network device in the house that supports spanning-tree. Neither the RT-AX89X nor GT-AXE16000 pay any attention. And embarrassingly, neither does the Trendnet TEG-7080ES 10GBase-T switch. Consumer gear lives in the dark ages.]

          Reply
          • With my reading here, I have a 2 more questions:

            1. My current set up does use a switch.
            Router main level of house -> basement switch -> cat5 cables to all 3 levels of house

            Does the switch have any bearing on my Asus Mesh hardware choices ?

            2. My ISP is Charter/Spectrum cable internet.
            I have the max speed available at my address which is 1 gig. The discussion regarding of a β€œmulti” gig capable mesh network setup would not apply to be due to the limitations of my ISP right?

          • 1. All about AiMesh setup in this post.
            2. More on Gigabit Internet in this post.

            If you actually give *any* of the posts here a serious read — meaning paying attention from top to bottom and following the related links — you’ll get *all* your questions answered, Maurice. Give it a try!

            If you don’t have time or don’t want to read, get help from a local professional, or follow your gut and hope for the best. Please respect the comment rules.

  3. Hey Dong,

    Here is a new one for you! I love your reviews and was all set to get an Netgear Nighthawk RAXE300 for my mid size house with gigabit fibre. However my wife insists on it being white!! Do you have a recommendation on the best router that comes in white? I was thinking about. TP-Link XE75 Pro but just buying a single unit not the mesh?

    Reply
  4. Hi Dong,

    I’ve been reading your reviews and I know something like the RAXE300 is a good deal because of the price. However, RAXE500 is around $460 and AXE11000 is $447, while RAXE300 is around $380-400. Given the small price premium, what would you recommend?

    Reply
    • Sorry, JA, but I can’t comment on how you spend your dough. Check the review of each said router for more. πŸ™‚

      Reply
  5. Hello Dong,

    Thanks for all of your work. I’m sure it’s a lot of time and effort so it’s appreciated. I’m installing a new system.

    [] 2 story home, open home design.
    [] The cable port comes into the office downstairs.
    [] Comcast dsl cable. Currently 650 down/20up, about 8ms latency, on the desktop connected via ethernet.
    [] Currently using 3 Deco x20’s. They work good, but not great. Lots of latency.
    [] New modem: Arris S33.
    [] Currently do not have a router. I’m interested in the Synology 6600ax router (with the possibility to add a satellite) but not sure if the 1gb outbound port is a deal breaker.
    [] Internet use: day trading, YT videos, connecting to Dish DVR to watch on my desktop, Zoom, online research, and the usual internet world. Plus, we’re adding a T Mobile cell extender.

    As you know, I’m concerned not having a router’s firewall in place. I attempted to use the Deco as a temporary router but it adds to the latency.

    I’m not craving to have wifi 6E but at a minimum want 6. I don’t want to pay $$$ for products like the Orbi and such. I value practicality, reliability, quality, and “easy to adjust” when it comes to techie things.

    Should I allow the 1gb max outbound on the 6600ax be a deal breaker? Is there a better setup without spending more money? Your posts have steered me to Synology but it’s not a done deal.

    Thank you sir.

    Reply
      • Yes, I realize Comcast is not dsl. Tks for catching that. I read the post after you provided the link. I read it earlier in the day but clearly I needed to read it again today. At this time I’m going to order the Synology 6600ax router. As you said, I want to invest into the best quality router I can afford. It’s comforting knowing I can add the 6600ax mesh router later if there’s a need. For the near future I doubt I will need more than 1gb on a router’s LAN port – especially due to Comcast’s current 1+ gb plans are not financially justifiable. They changed their plans/pricing this week and it’s mho it’ll be another 12-24 months before they change it again in my area because they are the only provider next to more expensive Century Link’s dsl (got it correct!). Plus, I can always sell the Synology which I’m about to do for my TP Link 1750 and Deco x20 routers.

        Thanks again for sharing your research and wisdom!

        Reply
      • Thank you for always sharing your wealth of network understanding! This article is definitely no exception. I do have a comment on the Zen WiFi PRO ET12. ASUS specifically sells a 1 piece unit (for $479 if I’m not mistaken). Maybe you’d want to include it as a standalone in this article in the future? (Just a thought as it’s officially sold as both standalone and 2 pack)….

        Reply
  6. Hey Dong,

    I’ve been reading a lot of your articles trying to wrap my mind around it all – thanks for putting all this info out there!

    I’m trying to figure out the best setup for a house that has to have a wireless backhaul. It doesn’t have to be a kit sold together – it could be a combo of devices like you talk about in other articles.

    The GT-AXE16000 is attractive as a main router, and I liked the ET12 AXE11000s – but I saw you point out somewhere that config is great for wired but but not the best for wireless due to having to use one of the ET12s 5Ghz as a front haul (if I understood correctly).

    I saw you say somewhere that multiple GT-AXE16000s was also a bad idea, and you seemed to suggest a traditional 3 band satellite over a Wi-Fi-6 3 band for a wireless back haul setup since you could use one of the 5Ghz as a dedicated back haul, but I like the idea of having 6Ghz available through the house for future proofing things. Am I asking too much from a wireless back haul setup?

    I have a pretty big house, and a large yard, I’d like as much coverage as I can get without putting devices outside. I currently have 1.2Gbps internet connection and would like to be able to provide close to that over my Wi-Fi if possible.

    I guess what I’m asking is if you had to pick a combo of devices from what is available on the market right now designed specifically with wireless back haul in mind (I know you say I should wire my house instead πŸ˜› – but I can’t) – what would that setup look like?

    Thanks!
    David

    Reply
    • I’d go with a 2-pack, 3-pack, or 4-pack (you can get the packs or put together separate units) of the XT12 or XT8, David. If you really want 6E, the Netgear RBKE960 is the only viable option but its performance just not worth it for the cost. In any case, chances are you only see between 300Mbps to 800Mbps on the client, but that’s about how fast most clients are.

      Reply
      • Hi,

        Thanks for getting back so quick!

        I don’t like the Netgear option because of all the feature paywalls – that just rubs me the wrong way.

        Last question – would I be better off with an GT-AX11000 for my main router since it also supports 5.9Ghz/UNII-4; utilizing 2 or 3 XT12s as the satellites or just XT12s all the way around?

        I think I read on snbforums where someone was saying the NAT speeds on the GT-AX11000 were faster. What are your thoughts?

        I also plan to try WAN Aggregation from my modem (Motorola MB8600) to my router so I can maximize my 1,200 – 1,400 Mbps connection – All of these routers we are talking about should be able to support that – right?

        Thanks again!
        David

        Reply
        • Considering you’re using wireless backhaul, there’s no need to use the GT-AX11000 — you need wiring to see its benefits. I’d go full XT8 or XT12 (mixing those two might work, but I haven’t tried). I haven’t tried WAN LG — it’s very clunky. It’s better to get a Multi-Gig modem instead. More in this post

          Reply
  7. My WAN modem (ATT) connects to a switch for my home. Should I connect a (new) mesh router to the modem or the switch?

    Reply
  8. Hi
    Great job with the reviews and thoughts on these networking solutions.
    My question is the idea of security updates. My last few routers from asus, tplink and linksys have been slow to get security updates if any at all. More often they make the pride β€œend of life”.
    People have suggested that if privacy is not an issue, the eero and google routers will have better and more rapid security vulnerability updates.

    Is this true or just hype? There’s nothing worse than buying a 3 to 400 piece of equipment and have it not get security updates. Do any of these mesh systems Provide longer updates when he comes to patches and vulnerabilities?

    Thank you for all your help

    Reply
  9. Dong- the what is your opinion on the best dumb Wi-Fi 6E mesh network? I really like my Firewalla as the main router and would love to place 3-4 APs around the house that support 2.4, 5 and 6GHz. Can mesh solutions be set up in bridge modes?

    Reply
  10. Dong:
    When the ET12 units are operated in MESH MODE, the “NODE” (slave) unit seems to be programmed to operate on the same RF channels as the “router” (primary/control) ET12.
    Assuming we’re using all wired backhaul, this practice seems counter-productive. Isn’t it more desirable to have the radios in each unit (main and each slave node) operate on its own independent Wifi channel? (with multiple base stations and clients on the same RF channel, they will defer to one another and/or raise the noise-floor, causing operation to shift to lower MCS tiers).
    Why doesn’t the supposedly “AI” central control figure out what wifi channels are not being used by neighbors, and then program each client on its own dedicated RF channel?
    For $900usd, the ET12 doesn’t seem to be very “AI” (ie not as intelligent as it should be).

    Reply
    • That’s generally how a mesh system work, Robert, and it’s more constrained a relationship than you’d imagine if you compare it to a relationship between humans, which itself has no real standard. No matter how much they cost, that’s how they’re gonna be unless you want to use each broadcaster as a standalone access point, but then it’s no longer a “mesh”. The notion of “AI” in this case is mostly BS — there’s no such thing. Don’t buy into marketing and think of it as a standard. πŸ™‚

      Reply
    • Mesh works on handing off from one node to the next. I’m not sure how you’d implement a transfer from one frequency to another. If you can figure out how to implement that I’m sure one of these companies will hire you on the spot….

      Reply
  11. @Dong

    I only need a WAP to upgrade my current wifi 5 Asus RT-AC66U to either wifi 6 or wifi 6E. I’ll also upgrade my phone to an S22 which means it supports 6E. I live in a small condo that’s only around 55 sqm so a single WAP is enough. Here are my questions:

    1. At this point, is 6E the way to to go or just stay at 6? 6E is just too expensive right now and I don’t even know if it’s worth it since I’m still at a sub-Gig Internet subscription.

    2. Will I get more bang for my buck if I go with a dedicated WAP or just go with the Asus RT routers and run them in AP mode (like what I’m doing now). I don’t need routing capabilities because I have pfsense for that.

    Reply
    • 1) I see a lot of other AP (and wireless video bridge) units on 5G. There are few channels left unoccupied. No 160 mhz channel is available. If you want the big BW then go to the unspoiled 6ghz. BUT
      2) To actually get the big BW that is promised in all the adverts, you need to run at the top of the MCS ladder. That in turn demands PRISTINE RF CONDITIONS. Your client needs to be line of sight to the AP, and even then probably no further than 20 feet away. Failing that you’ll drop to a lower rung on the MCS and get reduced speed.
      3) If you opt for multiple AP, perhaps try to pick ones that can force brain-dead-stupid clients to roam to the closest AP. Many clients are totally worthless and will stay associated with an undesirable, topographically remote AP, even if they are sitting next to an optimal AP. The smartphone companies assume consumers are uneducated cretins, so they sell us phones with cretinous WIFI client behavior.

      Reply
  12. Thanks very much for this list- very helpful. Is it possible to use the ASUS AXE-16000 as the primary router and the ET8s as mesh nodes?

    Reply
  13. Awesome site.

    I have a 5 bedroom house, I have a asus-rt-ax92u mesh setup. It’s been great but struggles with dropped Wi-Fi every few days and it’s not fast enough to stream 4K video from my Synology NAS.

    Which mesh setup would you recommend? I was looking at the Orbi 963 but am I just wasting my money when a lesser setup would work perfectly. I can’t do a wired back haul due to the house setup.

    Reply
    • Assuming you use wireless backhaul, Carl, a couple of things:

      1. Separate the bands of the RT-AX92U and make sure your streamers connect to one of a 5GHz band — this post will help with other issues.
      2. Set the hardware to restart itself every a few days — you can do that in the System area of the web interface.
      3. Get your home wired!

      If the RT-AX92U is not working out, the Orbi BRKE 960 might not improve things much. Don’t believe in the hype. πŸ™‚

      Reply
  14. Hi Dong,
    I need an advice: I have a asus rt-ax82u router and I need a new router for a nod aimesh. Should I buy a new asus rt ax82u or asus rt ax86s. (money differences between them is 35 eur more for ax86S).
    thanks for all,
    Virgil

    Reply
  15. Dong,

    I’m laboring over my situation. I have the wiring for a wired backhaul mesh setup throughout the house. But the walls are thin, and the ports are the rooms with the ports are all on top of each other (basement/office/bedroom). I think the nodes would just be too close.

    Here’s the kicker: There is a special spot in my kitchen where every device could receive a signal only needing to pass through a single wall/floor/ceiling. What if I just purchased one rockstar router and put it there?

    And if so, is the Asus RT-AX89X your pick for the one router to rule them all?

    Reply
    • Sorry, that first sentence should read: “But the walls are thin, and the rooms with the ports are all on top of each other (basement/office/bedroom).”

      Reply
    • The RT-AX89X is an excellent router to pick as the main AiMesh router, Kyle. You can try reduce one node instead of stacking them up to see how that pans out.

      Reply
  16. Dong,
    First I wanted to thank you for your excellent insight and helpful comments for those of use hoping to learn more about setting up our systems. In your opinion, is there any advantages to the Orbi RBKE963 over the Asus GT-AXE11000 (router) + ZenWiFi ET8 (satellite) combo that you outlined in your awesome β€œMultigig wired backhaul combo” article?

    I live in a fairly large fully wired home, and have two 6E clients (at the moment) with fiber gig service. From reading your various articles, I have deduced that the Orbi system would be a couple hundred dollars more than the 6E AiMesh combo with similar performance given the wired backhaul would eliminate the need for the Orbis additional 5GHz channel. Any additional thoughts would be appreciated.

    Thanks again
    Mike

    Reply
    • After a month I decided to move from the former to the latter and I’ve been much happier since, Mike. If you can handle a bit of hassle during the initial setup, the GT-AXE11000 + ET8 combo is the best for now.

      Reply
  17. We plan to implement a mesh WiFi system to solve the dead spot problem at the ends of our our recently purchased 3500 sq. ft. “E shaped” brick ranch style home. Our XFinity cable modem router is in the middle “wing”, and I think it’s the brick exterior walls that are attenuating the signal. I was thinking of going with 6E (either the Linksys AXE8400 or the Asus ET8) to try to future proof things. After reading your reviews, it seems as if that neither of these may be ideal. Our home is not wired yet, but it could be. Do you think a viable fully wireless solution will be available any time soon?

    Reply
  18. Dong:
    Is anyone going to release an 8Γ—8 6E ap or router?
    Operating at top of MCS ladder requires very high signal. Directional gain from an 8-antenna array β€œshould” offer some benefit?
    Any word on 8Γ—8 6ghz units coming out soon?
    (Also, units with socketed antennas, so we can customize antennas to the given deployment???)

    Reply
  19. Thanks for all the reviews and useful information. Still reading my way through it all. Thinking about pulling the trigger on the GT-AXE11000 since I am upgrading to 10g service. Sorry if I missed it somewhere, but something that I can’t get my head around is how can a router have speeds like 11000 Mbps (GT-AXE11000) if the router only has a 2.5G WAN. Wouldn’t the maximum theoretical speed be 2500 Mbps?

    Reply
    • That’s correct, Robert. You can’t get more than 2.5Gbps of Internet speed from this router. For faster, you’d need a router with 10Gbps WAN, like the RT-AX89X or the QNAP Qhora 301w. But, honestly, I don’t know how they will work out in real life for your situation since my Internet is slower than 1Gbps. πŸ™‚

      Reply
  20. I’m surprised that the speeds aren’t much faster at 6 GHz than at 5 GHz. Do these routers (and your client) support 160 MHz channels? Am I wrong to expect better performance at 6 GHz?

    Reply
    • 6ghz speeds are faster than 5ghz. But you cant tell on high 160mhz channels, unless you have more than 1gb+ internet connection. For my tests on 80mhz channels, 6ghz is about 250mbps faster than 5ghz.

      Reply
        • What I meant is that with the existing internet connections available, you can’t tell what’s faster, because thanks to the wider 160mhz channels, both 5 and 6ghz bands can easily achieve the current offered speeds.
          So literally, no one can say today that 5hz or 6ghz are faster while using a high 160mhz channel, because again both will achieve any speed anyone has at home. On the other hand you can test the speeds in narrower channels and see that 6ghz is truly faster. In the future we’ll be able to see 6ghz is always faster, once we have 1.5gb+ internet connections at home.

          Reply
        • I have 1.2gb connection at home. Both 5 and 6ghz are able to achieve the top speeds of over 1.4gb comcast decided to allocate. So yeah we know 6ghz is faster, but we can’t prove it yet unless you have more speed at home to test it.

          Reply
  21. I remember the cnet YouTube times, and I liked it. I can imagine that not everyone have the time to dedicate to a YouTube channel, but the way you explain stuff I think you’ll be successful at it if you go alone with it.

    Reply
    • Thanks. I honestly have no resources for a YouTube channel for now. We have no space for a studio. Recording and editing take time, too. It’s not easy doing these things on my own, have a day job and a bunch of mouths to feed. πŸ™‚

      Reply
  22. Have you raised the rate for the gtaxe and lowered the raxe?
    If that’s the case I would agree.
    After all these six months of router “horrors” I now can say I love this gtaxe.
    And remember people, buy and trade a cheap $5 craigslist modem/router and get the gtaxe for about $500 after tax on Best Buy.

    Reply

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