TP-Link Archer AX50 AX3000 Wi-Fi 6 Router Review

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In what I’m calling “the ideal home router”, TP-Link has sent over the Archer AX50 for me to take a look at. See why I think this in the video review below…

TP-Link Archer AX50: Specifications…

WIRELESS
Standards Wi-Fi 6
IEEE 802.11ax/ac/n/a 5 GHz
IEEE 802.11ax/n/b/g 2.4 GHz
WiFi Speeds AX3000
5 GHz: 2402 Mbps (802.11ax)
2.4 GHz: 574 Mbps (802.11ax)
WiFi Range 3 Bedroom Houses


4× Fixed High-Performance Antennas
Multiple antennas form a signal-boosting array to cover more directions and large areas

Beamforming
Concentrates wireless signal strength towards clients to expand WiFi range

High-Power FEM
Improves transmission power to strengthen signal coverage

WiFi Capacity High


Dual-Band
Allocate devices to different bands for optimal performance

OFDMA
Simultaneously communicates with multiple Wi-Fi 6 clients

Airtime Fairness
Improves network efficiency by limiting excessive occupation

DFS
Access an extra band to reduce congestion

4 Streams
Connect your devices to more bandwidth

Working Modes Router Mode
Access Point Mode
HARDWARE
Processor Dual-Core CPU
Ethernet Ports 1× Gigabit WAN Port
4× Gigabit LAN Ports
USB Support 1× USB 3.0 Port

Supported Partition Formats:
NTFS, exFAT, HFS+, FAT32

Supported Functions:
Apple Time Machine
FTP Server
Media Server

Buttons Wi-Fi/WPS Button
Power On/Off Button
LED On/Off Button
Reset Button
Power 12 V ⎓ 2 A
SECURITY
WiFi Encryption WEP
WPA
WPA2
WPA/WPA2-Enterprise (802.1x)
Network Security SPI Firewall
Access Control
IP & MAC Binding
Application Layer GatewayHomeCare™ Antivirus


Malicious Site Checker
Port Intrusion Prevention
Infected Device Isolation
Notification and Log

Guest Network 1× 5 GHz Guest Network
1× 2.4 GHz Guest Network
VPN Server OpenVPN
PPTP
SOFTWARE
Protocols IPv4
IPv6
Service Kits HomeCare™
Learn More>
Parental Controls HomeCare™ Parental Controls


Custom Profiles
Content Filtering
App Block
URL Filtering
Time Limit
Time Schedule (Bedtime)
Log Insight
Monthly Report

WAN Types Dynamic IP
Static IP
PPPoE
PPTP
L2TP
Quality of Service QoS by Device

HomeCare™ QoS


QoS by Application

Cloud Service Auto Firmware Upgrade
OTA Firmware Upgrade
TP-Link ID
DDNS
NAT Forwarding Virtual Servers
Port Forwarding
Port Triggering
DMZ
UPnP
IPTV IGMP Proxy
IGMP Snooping
Bridge
Tag VLAN
DHCP Address Reservation
DHCP Client List
Server
DDNS TP-Link
NO-IP
DynDNS
Management Tether App
Webpage
Check Web Emulator>
PHYSICAL
Dimensions (W×D×H) 10.2 × 5.3 × 1.5 in
(260.2 x 135.0 x 38.6 mm)
Package Contents Wi-Fi Router Archer AX50
Power Adapter
RJ45 Ethernet Cable
Quick Installation Guide
OTHER
System Requirements Internet Explorer 11+, Firefox 12.0+, Chrome 20.0+, Safari 4.0+, or other JavaScript-enabled browser

Cable or DSL Modem (if needed)

Subscription with an internet service provider (for internet access)

Certifications FCC, CE, RoHS
Environment Operating Temperature: 0℃~40℃ (32℉ ~104℉)
Storage Temperature: -40℃~70℃ (-40℉ ~158℉)
Operating Humidity: 10%~90% non-condensing
Storage Humidity: 5%~90% non-condensing
TEST DATA
WiFi Transmission Power CE:
<20dBm(2.4GHz)
<23dBm(5.15GHz~5.35GHz)
<30dBm(5.47GHz~5.725GHz)
FCC:
<30dBm(2.4GHz & 5.15GHz~5.825GHz)
WiFi Reception Sensitivity 5 GHz:
11a 6Mbps:-97dBm, 11a 54Mbps:-79dBm
11ac VHT20_MCS0:-96dBm, 11ac VHT20_MCS11:-66dBm
11ac VHT40_MCS0:-94dBm, 11ac VHT40_MCS11:-63dBm
11ac VHT80_MCS0:-91dBm, 11ac VHT80_MCS11:-60dBm
11ac VHT160_MCS0:-88dBm, 11ac VHT160_MCS11:-55dBm
11ax HE20_MCS0:-95dBm, 11ax HE20_MCS11:-63dBm
11ax HE40_MCS0:-92dBm, 11ax HE40_MCS11:-60dBm
11ax HE80_MCS0:-89dBm, 11ax HE80_MCS11:-58dBm
11ax HE160_MCS0:-85dBm, 11ax HE160_MCS11:-55dBm
2.4 GHz:
11g 6Mbps:-97dBm, 11a 54Mbps:-79dBm
11n HT20_MCS0:-97dBm, 11n HT20_MCS7:-78dBm
11n HT40_MCS0:-95dBm, 11n HT40_MCS7:-75dBm
11ac VHT20_MCS0:-96dBm, 11ac VHT20_MCS11:-67dBm
11ac VHT40_MCS0:-94dBm, 11ac VHT40_MCS11:-64dBm
11ax HE20_MCS0:-96dBm, 11ax HE20_MCS11:-64dBm
11ax HE40_MCS0:-93dBm, 11ax HE40_MCS11:-61dBm

 

TP-Link Archer AX50: Video Review

TP-Link Archer AX50: Roundup

The TP-Link Archer AX50 is an AX3000 chipset based Wi-Fi 6 router using Intel’s Home Wi-Fi package and this is indeed a fantastic performer aimed at households wanting to upgrade to Wi-Fi 6 networking and have something better than their ISP-provided router. The Archer AX50 does indeed fit that role and does so very well.

To avoid any confusion the Archer AX50 is an updated internationally available version of the Walmart exclusive “AX3000 router” released in the US late last year. So if you’re in the US, I’d be inclined to buy the AX50 where possible.

The Archer AX50 is a very capable router with excellent performance. Even when just turning on smart connect and let it do its thing, which I recommend you use too, by using DFS technology to push connected devices to vacant lanes to keep speeds high.
Transfer rates were great as expected thanks to the excellent performance and technology available.

The mean of the 3ft range tests maxed out the gigabit ethernet connection with a 113Mbps transfer rate the exact rate I get when transferring files over a direct ethernet connection. A 40ft away the results were a very impressive 100Mbps. A respectable result once again.

NAS performance is about as expected now we know the specs. With 31.4MB/s read and 17.3MB/s write average.

With a single Gigabit WAN and 4 Gigabit LANs on offer with the ability to aggregate 2 of the ports for faster connections to a server or NAS which is becoming increasingly more common.

Missing from the video review: The Type-A USB port has an update to USB3 over the “AX3000 router” which was USB2. Increasing the overall transfer rates but it is still limited by the CPU speeds as the NAS transfer rates have shown above.
Finally, a WPS/Wi-Fi button, LED on-off button, and a recessed reset button on the right-hand side of the rear.

The Archer AX50 is quite an aesthetic piece to behold too, which adds to its appeal. Covered in black plastic but be prepared to wipe the glossy parts on top regularly. It has plenty of ventilation on the bottom and some on the top edges.
Even so, it does run rather warm and after running for an hour or so, is hot to the touch. It won’t burn but it is uncomfortably warm to hold in the hand. Make sure that it is kept in a well-ventilated area. This being said: whilst running hot, there is no performance degradation.

Again, I’d like to ask TP-Link to add the Homecare™ package to the browser as soon as possible, but at least it is available in the Tether app which most people can and will use in the meantime for free for the life of the router.
What I found the most strange is the router also gives you the option to sign in to your TP-Link account, yet the Homecare settings are still not available.
I’ll probably do a follow-up article and/or video in the not too distant future about whether this gets implemented or not, so stay tuned for that.

At the time of this review, the Archer AX50 is available at around £150 in the UK and $150 in the US. Making this an attractive ISP router replacement (providing you can still use the ISP provided one in modem mode or purchase a modem separately) or something to tie into a cable or fibre install giving the whole home excellent coverage and speeds. The price to performance is top tier and this is why its earned “the ideal home router” moniker from me.

I’m pleased to award the TP-Link Archer AX50 Play3r’s Gold Award.

Thanks to TP-Link for sending the Archer AX50 in for review.

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