2.5G router, more CPU, less idle power consumption

My router requirements:

  1. At least four 2.5G ethernet ports, WAN + 3 LAN switched to avoid CPU load.
  2. Passively cooled, metal-case-as-heatsink, very thin/low profile to fit inside wall enclosure.
  3. <10W power consumption while idle, 12V power supply preferred to be able to share power brick with GPON terminal.
  4. As much CPU power as possible for Wireguard tunnels, but again, within idle power constraints.
  5. OpenWRT supported, mainline.
  6. Available in EU.

Don’t really need USB, WiFi, HDMI, power hungry SATA/NVMe, etc.

SQM isn’t needed as well, no buffer bloat problems with my 1Gbit/s up/down fiber.

My five year old Netgear R7800 can NAT at 1Gbit/s line speed with software offload, but can only handle 270Mbit/sec through Wireguard tunnels, consuming around 7W.

Basically I’m looking to upgrade my cat5e cabling to 2.5G and increase Wireguard speed to at least 1Gbit/s, while staying close to existing 7W power consumption.

there's a couple in Looking for Gbit / multi-Gbit router available in the EU

follow the links to the other threads too.


Raspberry Pi 4 + Switch. I don't think an all in one exists that can wireguard 1Gbit/s.

problem isn't Wireguard, but the 2.5G ports most devices (still) lack, the RPi4 included.

Completely overlooked the 2.5G ports...apologies. NanoPi R5S comes with 1 1G and 2 2.5G ports. Probably will do exactly what you want it to!

There aren't any router with 2.5G on all 5 ports with wifi.
Atleast which I can find.

NanoPI R5S has only two 2.5G ports and from the looks of it uses some kind of OpenWRT fork, instead of upstreaming their code. Pass on that.

Additional 2.5G switch is something I want to avoid, because of more wiring, wasted ports, wasted power etc. ISP provided Alcatel ONT terminal consumes ~7W, waaay too much for a simple fiber-ethernet bridge job.

According to reviews, Aliexpress N6005 and N5105 router boxes screwed up something idle power consumption wise, definitely going over 10W idle.

So far the only option that kind of fits my requirements is older J4125 box. Four ports, 5.5-6W idle consumption, CPU should probably handle gigabit Wireguard. Although some people report RAM compatibility problems, lack of support, well... typical Aliexpress product problems.

I can only say ghat i have the version "even older" based on the c3160. 8GB of memory, 128GB SSD, it just runs and it runs well. Never had any issues.
Runs coreboot bios, but no 2.5Gb/s ports

The typical consumer router is stuck at around 500MBit/s. The ones with HW offloading end at 9xx-something. A few ones are available with 2.5 on the WAN side only.
The lack of available chip manufactoring capacity wont likely change that for another 2-3 years. Evolution is mostly standing still at the moment in the SOHO router market.
2.5 will still be a rare unicorn in the soho market, so even in 3 years no good lookout.

Except business fireall appliances, your best (and prob only option) is to build one yourself with standard x86 consumer parts.

There is a german bulletin board discussing custom-build PCs (some with even less than 10W idle) mostly for home mini servers. You need to handpick parts, mostly not too old intel 2-4 core, a Fujitsu or ASROCK Mainboard and a Pico PSU or Corsair Rmxxx PSU will raise the power savings bar:

(top link in first post is a google spreadsheet with several builds, but a lot of newer systems at the end of the thread are currently missing in the google spreadsheet)

Combine that with a 4-way server NIC PCI-E (which might be a bit expensive, but you’ve asked for 2.5G) and you are in.