The TP-Link Archer AC1900 is a smaller router (one of our top picks: http://www.gadgetreview.com/best-wireless-router-for-home-gaming-mac-overall) that you can find for only $110, lower than many other routers with a combined speed up to 1.9GPps. But do people like this small router, especially when it comes to more demanding router management? Let’s find out!
TP-Link Archer AC1900 Router Features
In addition to the 1.9GBps combined speeds, this router includes beamforming for directing signals, a 1GHz processor, and USB ports (both 3.0 and 2.0) for connections. It offers dual band device managmeent, and comes with 4 Gigabit Ethernot ports.
- Easy to set up
- Fast for its size
- Relatively affordable
- Tough to position in some locations
- Some bugs and failures noted in early models
PC World found this TP-Link model to be a reliable choice for those who hate dropped signals. However, they did notice a few quirks, too. The model seemed to be able to handle large file transfers with ease, and indeed was particularly fast for its cost. But the router then struggled with small file transfers, which seems a little strange. The review also found that the parental controls didn’t work, although this could be due to a temporary bug.
“Guess what, though: it’s still very good value for money. It’s one of the many AC1900-rated dual-band routers that are currently on the Australian market, and this means that it can do 802.11ac at 1300Mbps, and 802.11n at up to 600Mbps. It has three external antennas that are removable, and they support the good stuff we’ve heard about from other high-end routers, such as Beamforming, where the signal can be directed to a particular device’s path, rather than going all over the place.”
Trusted Reviews liked the usability of the model, but found it a little hard to set up and manage, especially with only one USB 3.0 port. Tests found that speeds were reliable and competitive, but that other models did a better job over short distances (if your router is right next to your computer or console, for example).
“Elegant it may be but it’s not necessarily the most practical. The stand means you can’t lay the router flat or mount it on a wall. Moreover it isn’t sure footed enough and will fairly easily tip over. For most households these will all prove to be fairly minor points as once installed you’ll leave the router well alone, but its tendency to topple over definitely proved a little frustrating during testing.
Otherwise it’s a clean bill of health as the three aerials are removable, yet sturdy, and are easy to position. The lights on the front for indicating power, Wi-Fi connection, Internet connection and the like are all easy to see and tell apart.”
Amazon users were doubtful of the small size, but found that the reach and speed tended to impress them, and that this TP-Link made an admirable alternative to more costly models that may be out of reach for some buyers. However, early versions of this router did seem to have a higher fail rate, so it’s important to get the latest model.
“After two weeks of testing it, I have four words: it just works — period. The signal is strong and punches through the lathe-and-plaster walls of my nearly 100 year old house. Its signal is considerably stronger than the WRT1900ACS that I had (which cost almost three times what this one did), and rivaled the signal strength of the $400 ASUS. It doesn’t drop connections, doesn’t reboot itself, and delivers a strong and steady stream of data to all devices, wired and wireless.
Only one word of warning; you need to make sure the Archer C7 that you purchase is NOT a first version. Everyone on the web has reported that TP-LINK badly botched the V1, especially for Macintosh/Apple devices (which is most of my house); most of those should be out of circulation or in landfills by now. The one I bought from Amazon was a V2, and it works perfectly with all of my Apple and non-Apple devices.”
A powerful router for its size, the TP-Link is a little difficult to position but makes a great alternative for more expensive routers if you are on a strict budget.
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