Linksys WRT1900ACS vs Netgear R7200


Which one of the two would you recommend as a primary router for OpenWRT and why?

I can compare the specs myself (I know the WRT1900ACS has a faster CPU and more RAM), however I was wondering if there were other concerns such as wifi driver or general platform reliability.

WRT1900ACS is using mwlwifi
R7200 is using the same OpenWRT binary as the R6700 v2, and uses mt76

I have a slow Internet connection so I do not really care about the routing performance, but I care about range, reliability, and to a lesser extend Wifi<->Ethernet transfer speed.

The R7200 appears to support an odd (non-standard?) 800 Mbps mode on 2.4 GHz. Is it even supported in OpenWRT?


AX: Belkin RT3200 / Linksys E8450

AC: Netgear R7800, Zyxel Armor Z2, Archer C2600.

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r7800 (ipq8065+qca9984), not d7800 (ipq8064+qca9980 with an unsupported Broadcom VDSL modem onboard).

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I stand corrected!


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I do not have any of these devices. That's why I was asking between two models.

nor did say you already owned them ....

set up the Linksys as router, and the Netgear as a dumb ap for the wifi.

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Well I did ask specifically between these two models. I know some (especially more expensive) perform better.
I do not plan on using both of them at the same location. Only one in my home.

trial and error then ?

Set up the Linksys, see if you're happy with the wifi, if not, switch....

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well of course, but I was asking here in case it was already well known in this forum that one platform/router is better than the other.

I can't actually speak toward the WRT 1900ACS. I do own quite a few R6700v1/R7000/R7200s. Their Broadcom chipset is ok as a packet forwarder, though even there it is CPU bound long before reaching the link speed except for ethernet-to-ethernet switching. It is notably terrible for any packets the device has to itself source or consume. So Samba, or VPN, or anything like soaks up your CPU.

My experience has been such that I now stay away from Broadcom as much as I possibly can.

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My R7200 doesn't have Broadcom it's MediaTek.

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Ack! So sorry. Right. That's the Walmart clone of the R6700v2, not the v1. That's a very different beast. I have only one of those which was, sadly, languishing in a drawer until just a few weeks ago. It will never languish again. Fantastic unit. I cannot speak highly enough of them. The MIPS32r2 880MHz processor is a little light, and even megahertz-for-megahertz is only about 80% as fast as ARM devices. But Mediatek offloads almost all the data movement into hardware acceleration. The MT7615 Wi-Fi chip, for example, has its own coprocessor on board for data moving. So the main CPU doesn't even break a sweat most of the time. It will source/consume data at the full wire speed.

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I use the WRT1900ACS both v1 / v2 here.

Handles symmetrical Gb Fiber here well, without SQM enabled. (routing)
Handles DSL, Cable, etc. w/ SQM enabled well. (routing)
Handles 5-10 total WiFi connected endpoints, on both 2.4 / 5 Ghz networks well (WiFi)
Handles banIP, Bandwidth Monitor, SQM Qos, OpenVPN, Advanced Reboot, etc., well.

Runtime is in weeks -> months. Have to remind myself every month to (reboot / reset) the (3) routers here. Usual home bandwidth consumption is 400-600 GB / month. (IPTV, w/ wireless endpoints). Client installed units run months w/o issue, I try to visit on-site & reset every 45-60 days / as needed.

WiFi Range is fine on this router. As good as (but not better than) the other 1900ACS offerings from this time frame by other vendors. It will not 'magically' extend coverage, 'travel faster than a speeding bullet', 'leap tall buildings', etc. * If extended range coverage is a primary concern: consider using (multiple) AP endpoints -> and logically extending the WiFi network. ... This is a capable circa-2015 WiFi router: not a Tri-band Mesh WiFi here.

The Netgear R7800 is also a capable router, and well supported here. I support a few at client sites, WiFi range is slightly better on the Netgear, in my experience.

Either router will be a solid choice, WRT1900ACS or R7800.

No experience w/ the R7200 router. Hope the feedback is helpful.