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    TP-Link Archer C5400 v2 review

    The TP-Hyperlink Archer C5400 v2 is an upgraded model of the C5400, coming with a brand new (decrease) value, and a variety of good dwelling options that can attraction to individuals who have a home filled with Amazon Echos, Hue lightbulbs and different linked devices.

    Even in case you’re not the kind of one that likes barking orders at Alexa, the TP-Hyperlink Archer C5400 v2 comes with a construct high quality and stage of efficiency that we’ve come to anticipate from TP-Hyperlink.

    So, on paper at the very least, the TP-Hyperlink Archer C5400 v2 is a router that ought to attraction to fans, avid gamers, small companies and even informal customers alike. That’s a fairly numerous viewers, so can this router please everybody, or is it a jack-of-all-trades? Learn on to search out out.

    Spec Sheet

    Wi-fi Connectivity: IEEE 802.11a/b/g/n/ac, AC5400 Tri-Band

    Processor: 1.4GHz dual-core processor, three x co-processors

    Reminiscence: 256MB RAM

    Ports: 5 x Gigabit Ethernet ports (1 WAN and four LAN),  1 x USB three.zero, 1 x USB 2.zero 

    Dimensions:  9.1 x 9.1 x 1.7 inches (230 x 230 x 43mm; W x D x H)

    Worth and availability

    The TP-Hyperlink Archer C5400 v2 could be purchased for round £250 ($299.99, AU$469), which is pricey for a router, though not as dear as the unique TP-Hyperlink Archer C5400, which price £350 (round $490, AU$650) when it was first launched.

    That value places it in the identical bracket on the Billion BiPac 8900AX-2400 and the Synology RT2600ac, two feature-packed routers which are adequate to function in our best wireless routers checklist.

    That value does make the Archer C5400 v2 a tougher promote for informal customers trying to improve the free router they obtained with their ISP, as there are extra inexpensive routers on the market. The Asus RT-AC86U, for instance, is a superb router that may be had for fairly a bit cheaper in case you store round, whereas with Google Wifi the worth distinction is much more stark.

    Google Wifi definitely doesn’t have the superior options of the Archer C5400 v2, but it surely’s compact, fashionable and inexpensive, and can be a mesh Wi-Fi system, which suggests a variety of models could be dotted round your own home for higher Wi-Fi sign. The Archer C5400 v2 is a extra conventional affair, comprising only a single unit.

    Design and options

    Whereas we’re seeing an rising variety of routers undertake aesthetically attention-grabbing designs to higher slot in to fashionable houses, such because the Amplifi HD, the TP-Hyperlink Archer C5400 v2 has an unashamedly old-school router look to it. You get a big black field with vents on the high, in addition to eight antennae that may be positioned to assist enhance Wi-Fi protection.

    It’s definitely not one thing that will look good in a minimalist surroundings, however in a house workplace, or perched subsequent to a gaming PC, the Archer C5400 v2 received’t look too misplaced, and it will definitely attraction to those that worth perform over kind.

    On the rear are 4 gigabit LAN ports for connecting wired gadgets, in addition to a WAN port for connecting the router to a modem. Because the Archer C5400 v2 does not include a modem inbuilt it means it may be used with any web connection, though you’ll nonetheless have to have a separate modem as nicely. There’s additionally a USB 2.zero port and a USB three.zero port for file and printer sharing.

    So, don’t go anticipating a stylish-looking gadget right here, however fairly one thing that is been designed to do the job in addition to attainable. That’s value commending as nicely.

    Benchmarks

    Here is how the TP-Hyperlink Archer C5400 v2 fared in our transient suite of checks (performed utilizing a 76.6Mbps service):

    Ookla Velocity Check 5GHz (Obtain | Add):

    Inside 5 toes/1.52 meters; no obstructions: 74.three | 18.2 Mbps

    Inside 13 toes/three.96 meters; three plaster partitions: 74.2 | 17.9 Mbps

    Ookla Velocity Check 2.4GHz (Obtain | Add):

    Inside 5 toes/1.52 meters; no obstructions: 66.eight | 17.1 Mbps

    Inside 13 toes/three.96 meters; three plaster partitions: 62.5 | 17.1 Mbps

    It’s not simply the design that means the TP-Hyperlink Archer C5400 v2 means enterprise; the specs checklist too factors to a tool that has loads of energy relating to dealing with community visitors.

    There is a dual-core 1.4GHz Broadcom ARM processor with three co-processors for dealing with information, with every co-processor dealing with a band (one 2.4GHz band, and two 5GHz channels). On paper which means that even with busy networks which have numerous wi-fi gadgets connecting to it, the Archer C5400 v2 ought to maintain the circulation of information between gadgets robust and dependable.

    The eight antennae that protrude from the Archer C5400 v2, making it appear like an upturned spider, at the very least make argument for his or her inclusion, dealing with the two.4GHz band with 1000Mb/s of bandwidth over 4 streams, with the 2 5GHz channels additionally getting 4 streams between them with potential speeds of as much as 2167Mb/s.

    Chances are you’ll notice that this bandwidth is greater than what Ethernet community cables are able to, probably inflicting a bottleneck for wired gadgets similar to Community Hooked up Storage (NAS) drives and desktop PCs, however TP-Hyperlink has addressed this by together with hyperlink aggregation. This lets you use two bodily Ethernet ports as in the event that they had been one connection, so when you’ve got a NAS gadget or community card that helps hyperlink aggregation you possibly can primarily double the bandwidth of the wired connection.

    It is a function that’s often present in community switches and business-orientated routers, so its inclusion in a router that’s additionally geared toward dwelling customers is spectacular, and it will probably make an actual distinction to your community speeds when you’ve got suitable – particularly when you’ve got a NAS gadget that serves up media and information to numerous gadgets in your house, for instance.

    Set-up

    TP-Hyperlinks’ ambition to marry enterprise options with the user-friendliness of gadgets designed for dwelling use extends to the setup process, which is finished through a fast and easy wizard. There’s additionally a smartphone app known as TP-Hyperlink Tether, which lets you arrange and configure the router out of your cell gadget.

    Whereas we’re fairly skilled at organising routers, the clear directions, together with graphics explaining the steps, makes the method of getting the TP-Hyperlink Archer C5400 v2 up and operating straightforward to comply with for most individuals, regardless of how a lot or how little networking experience they possess, with out feeling patronizing.

    Then there are the Alexa instructions, which allow you to activate options utilizing voice instructions and an Amazon Echo gadget. You’ll want to set up the TP-Hyperlink Router Ability, and as soon as that is accomplished you possibly can say “Alexa, inform TP-Hyperlink I’ve buddies coming” to allow the visitor community.

    One other helpful voice command is “Alexa, inform TP-Hyperlink I need to join a brand new gadget to the community”, which activates the WPS function, enabling you to attach a brand new gadget with out having to enter a password. TP-Link has a full list of Alexa commands on its web site.

    It is an excellent thought, and with a little bit of fiddling (together with making a TP-Hyperlink account and connecting it as much as the router, then linking the account to the Alexa app) it really works nicely. Most impressively, it offers folks a simple and intuitive solution to entry options with out having to delve into complicated admin pages.

    The IFTTT integration is one other good contact, enabling you to create your individual ‘recipes’ as a way to management the router utilizing easy instructions.

    Efficiency

    So far as Wi-Fi efficiency goes, we had been very impressed. Connecting proper subsequent to the router we obtained obtain speeds of 74.three Mb/s on the 5GHz band, and 66.8Mb/s on the two.4GHz. Add speeds had been 18.2Mb/s on the 5GHz and 17.1Mb/s on the two.4GHz band. That is on a line the place the utmost speeds are 76.6Mb/s obtain and 19.1 Mb/s add, so that you’re not shedding out on a lot velocity in any respect in case you go wi-fi.

    We then examined the speeds on the second flooring of the constructing, and had been happy to notice that even at this distance the speeds of the 5GHz community remained constant at 74.2Mb/s down, 17.9 up.

    The two.4GHz band did drop extra considerably, nevertheless, with 62.5Mb/s down and 17.1Mb/s up. We additionally tried the connection on the third flooring of the constructing, and with two flooring between our gadget and the Archer C5400 v2, speeds on the 5GHz band remained superb, with 73.5Mb/s down, and 17.9 Mb/s up.

    In the meantime, the two.4Ghz band supplied 60.3Mb/s down and 17.1Mb/s up. These are nonetheless fairly good speeds, however you possibly can see the efficiency hole between the older 2.4GHz band and the 5Ghz band open up right here.

    This glorious efficiency reveals that the Archer C5400 v2 is an excellent router for folks with giant homes, and when you’ve got a suitable 802.11ac gadget you’ll discover that you must be capable to get quick and dependable Wi-Fi over a big distance.

    It additionally signifies that avid gamers, or folks streaming 4K movies, can use the wi-fi community with out worrying about it impacting efficiency, as a substitute of getting to depend on Ethernet cables.

    We preferred

    Organising the TP-Hyperlink Archer C5400 v2 is good and simple. There are many options and loads of ports, and the Wi-Fi sign is great. Alexa integration is a superb contact as nicely. There’s lots to love about this router.

    We disliked

    The design received’t be to everybody’s style, and it’s a bit too giant to simply conceal away. It’s additionally fairly costly for a router.

    Last verdict

    The TP-Hyperlink Archer C5400 v2 is a superb router that does an excellent job of interesting to all kinds of customers. It is simple to arrange and configure, due to a consumer -friendly app and interface, but it additionally has sufficient superior options and highly effective to attraction to fans and enterprise customers.

    The star of the present is its Wi-Fi efficiency. Neglect about faffing with a number of models to arrange a mesh system or depend on a Wi-Fi repeater to increase protection, because the TP-Hyperlink Archer C5400 v2 has sufficient energy to cowl giant buildings with quick and dependable Wi-Fi.

    There’s no denying that it’s costly, nevertheless, and it’s not essentially the most elegantly-designed router. Nevertheless, when you’ve got a busy and demanding dwelling community that’s usually full of streaming and gaming visitors from a number of gadgets, then you definitely’ll see an immediate improve in case you swap out your free router for this one. For many individuals, that can make it nicely well worth the funding.

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