Replace Nighthawk R7000 with...?

I currently have a Nighthawk R7000 router that has problems, so I flashed OpenWRT onto it. I did that, and it now works - and works very well., But OpenWRT does not support its wifi (FLOSS not supported). So I'm considering purchasing another router. My only requirements are: WiFi equivalent or better than the R7000; LAN-WAN throughput of at least 400Mbs; and is relatively inexpensive (compared to the R7000).

I also have a Netgear WNDR3700v4 router which I flashed OpenWRT onto. That also works very well, including its wifi. But the WNDR3700v4's max LAN-WAN is less than the 400Mbs I need. I thought about connecting the WNDR3700 as a subnet of the R7000 (WNDR3700 WAN to R7000 LAN.) And since wifi speeds won't get up to 400Mbs, its slower LAN-WAN speed would be insignificant. But since its wifi is not as good (strength/performance-wise which I need), it would still not be quite the same as the R7000 alone.

So, any suggestions?



FWIW: the problem with my R7000, with OEM firmware, is that the VPN function does not work. Also, I am unable to connect to the R7000 LAN from another subnet connected to the same firewall. I can do both with OpenWRT firmware.

R7800 is great but discontinued now and can be costly. Good if you can find one used. Do you need SQM? I recently bought an Arch A6 V3 which has decent WiFi performance. Gigabit LAN-WAN and it saturated my connection 1000 MBits without SQM.

Is this the Archer A6 you have? Here is a comparison with my Nighthawk router:

The only significant difference that I could see (aside from price) was the wifi speed: Nighthawk is about double the speed. That is one of my criteria, since I stream a lot of 4K video, and the R7000 was the best that I had found (although never tested the A6). Then again, at a 25% price of the NIghthawk, it might seal the deal.

Gotta really think about this.

Thanks for the suggestion.


flash Fresh Tomato on the R7000. It is a 3rd party firmware and works absolutely beautifully on the R7000. I have this exact setup.
If you have problems or need help check out the Fresh tomato forum at

Fresh Tomato unlocks an amazing amount of features and increased performance on your R7000. You can increase the wifi transmitter power, unlock extra wifi channels, setup various vpn protocols, router level ad blocking, etc. Trust me just give it a try. If you need any help send me a pm.

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After I installed OpenWRT on my R7000, I checked the LAN-WAN speed, and it would only get up to about 300Mbs. Bypassing the router, going directly to my firewall, I am getting 450-500Mbs+.

Should that be right? I thought the router (with OpenWRT) could handle those speeds, without much slowdown. And, although I haven't yet re-flashed back to the Nighthawk OEM firmware, I believe that I was getting 400+Mbs with it.(the OEM). Could OpenWRT be slowing down this throughput, maybe?

Any insights appreciated.


Did you check the hardware and software offloading check boxes in the firewall section? That router will handle 500mbps no problem as long as SQM is not used and the offloading is checked. In fact it makes a pretty decent wired only router using OpenWRT so long as you have another device to use as a wifi access point.

Because of its wireless deficiencies, there's not a large userbase for that device and rather little benchmarking known. But, given the age of this device (and knowing that Broadcom uses proprietary offloading on their OEM firmware), those figures sound reasonable.

There are plenty of used EA8500's on ebay near the $50 mark if you are in U.S. and don't mind opening it up and using a serial dongle to flash it the first time. Slightly slower than an R7800, but for the cost a very nice main all in one gateway that will easily handle >400 Mbps LAN-WAN.

Same goes for the Archer C2600, easy flashable using TFTP, don't even need to open it.

Or get a new non-wifi router, and use the old one, as an AP.

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Can anyone recommend a replacement for me as well? I'm a total noob to OpenWRT, but I would like to begin using FOSS on my routers going forward to improve the security of my network and support this awesome project. I'd prefer to get something brand new.

Thanks so much.

Recommendations will vary by location, what's yours?

I am located in the USA.

Currently, brand new means expensive, due to Corona.

Does it need wifi, or is wired only ok?

What's the speed of your internet, now, and down the road.

what @anon89577378 posted, plus Tips for getting cheap used x86-based firewall with full Gbit NAT (a PC Engines APU) if you are in the US

Sorry for not reading those guides!

I would prefer if it have wifi in the rare event I need to enable the radios for guests, but I'm usually running with WiFi disabled.

450 down
22 up.

I don't need gigabit atm, but wouldn't mind leaving a provision for it.

I don't need USB, and have never used it. I guess I should always have the option, but I leave USB disabled.

I would only need to support 6 devices max if I had wifi enabled, but hardly ever that many.

The only service I would need would be VPN functionality.

My price range is anything really... unlimited budget for a good router!

They're not new, but I'd probably bid on those Roqos RC10s available on ebay, capable x86_64 devices, with wifi.

Check out the Turris Omnia 2020 as well.

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Thanks so much frollic. I also just edited my post above to share more specifics after reading the guides.