Review of the WiFi performance on Belkin RT3200

I guess by now a lot of us know that the Belkin RT3200 makes for a great Openwrt device. But I wanted to share this review video on Youtube which specifically talks about SQM performance and more importantly the weak WiFi performance on this device.

Hope this helps with anyone who is thinking about a new Openwrt router or considering the Belkin RT3200 already. Let me know if you have any questions about the WiFi on this router and I am happy to help.

I suggest you update your video to clarify the current WiFi issues only exist in 802.11ax mode. This is likely a driver or config issues and will hopefully be fixed. If you change to 802.11ac mode you will find the 5ft test gets a little slower, but all other tests are much faster.

My own WiFi tests using iperf3 server running on the router show a huge difference between the two modes. I am very happy with the overall WiFi performance.

800 Mbits	10 ft, no walls / line of sight
200 Mbits	20 ft, one wall
 80 Mbits	30 ft, two walls & floor (upstairs)
  0 Mbits	40 ft, two interior walls, one exterior wall (outside)
600 Mbits	10 ft, no walls / line of sight
500 Mbits	20 ft, one wall
220 Mbits	30 ft, two walls & floor (upstairs)
140 Mbits	40 ft, two interior walls, one exterior wall (outside)

Very interesting and thanks for sharing - I will validate this today and pin a comment on the video and attribute it you.

This slow down using AX is not unique to the RT3200. 802.11ax worse than 802.11ac with mt76 driver? - #110 by soxrok2212

Hi everyone! I'm considering to buy the router Belkin RT3200 as I read very good feedback around here. At this point, can anyone confirm it is a good choice? The only thing that seems to be bad is the performance using 802.11ax, but can't find any router that is a perfect choice.
Thanks in advance.

The post above by dan3 is consistent with my RT3200 WiFi experience using OpenWrt 22.03.2 stable.

Generally, I would say the RT3200 is an excellent all-in-one choice for up to roughly half Gigabit ISP service. Beyond that, it depends how much throughput you want and what else you want to run on it.

It has reasonable flash (128MB) and memory (512MB) for adding packages and running adblock. It can handle cake SQM/QoS for roughly half Gigbit ISP service, and reportedly nearly Gigabit if you are content with using fq_codel/simple instead. Obviously it routes Gigabit without SQM/QoS. The CPU has hardware crypto for OpenVPN. If blazing fast Wireguard VPN is desired on the router, I might look for a device with a faster CPU or more cores.

Some might consider its sole USB2 port (versus USB3) a significant downside. I don't. My printer connects with WiFi, and having used a USB HDD plugged into a USB3 equipped router as a home NAS in the past, and having since transitioned to a dedicated 2 bay economy NAS (QNAP TS-228A), I'm of the opinion that attaching storage to a router USB port is great for occasional file sharing convenience, but it is no substitute for a dedicated NAS device. A dedicated NAS that can devote its CPU to being a NAS with RAID redundancy, backup utilities, disk health monitoring, automated malware and virus scans, etc. is more than worth its extra cost to me.

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Thanks for the explanation. Forgive me as I'm a bit new to this...but you mean it can get the whole Gigabit speed disabling SQM/QoS? In this scenario does the wifi and ethernet as well have good performance? It's difficult to find a compatible with OpenWRT router that is good operating wireless and wired.

Yes and yes. It has hardware offload, which without SQM/QoS (they are not compatible) reduces CPU needed for routing a lot.