Searching for router to buy

I keep seeing the R7800 as recommendation, unfortunately it’s not available in my country. From these I can get the Linksys EA8500 or the Ubiquiti UniFi AC HD (snapshot only is a bit downside) however they are expensive for what they are and for gigabit SQM performance I can build a better PC for the price.
On the other hand, we’re light users, even I rarely do heavy load so I’m not sure that I need SQM. Without SQM doing gigabit speeds don’t need that capable router. I really don’t know what to get to have reasonable WiFi and wired performance with just few packages installed because the recommended routers are old so harder to buy them as new.

That is a sentiment heard occasionally, it probably is true if your link is never loaded to capacity. Now, personally I see my link (100/40, far from a gigabit, but still...) mostly idling, but occasionally there are spikes into saturation territory. Having SQM running means that if these spikes coincide with video conferences from/for work or other latency sensitive applications, I suffer no annoying delays and choppy video/voice, and I avoid having to shout "everybody, please stop using the internet right now" ;).

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I don't experience this, even if we are simultaneously in video calls. Of course It would be still nice to use SQM but the cost is on the higher side since basically for a gigabit connection I would need a PC for it which has high power consumption for a 24/7 device.
So I'm thinking about just getting a cheap router (under 100 euros) without using SQM. Maybe over 100 euros but no more than 150, above that I would just get a x86...
Which other SoCs are worth checking out for both wired and wireless connection?

Why not ipq40xx?

Personally, I don't think the >$200 routers are worth the money. I'd rather get two EA8300 as dumb APs and a RPi4 as the router for about the same total cost.

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Well, good for you ;). Now, with a Gigabit link two concurrent video conferences will not be enough, but 2 video conferences with a number of concurrent downloads might, but I accept that for your use caes that situation simply does not happen.

Not necessarily a raspberry pi4b for example has enough CPU cycles to run SQM at 1 Gbps, and costs around 100 EUR with the required USB3-ethernet dongle, or use the raspberry pi4b compute module with the dfrobot gigabit router carrier. You will end up with a gigabit capable wire only router for around 100EUR, which will require an addition managed switch and/or another openwrt router as AP (the pi's build in wreless is not router-class).
I do not want to push you to try this, I just want to counter the narrative that traffic shaping @1Gbps is territory of higher end x86 alone...

hello try maybe RT3200 E8450 power full router all in one

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@amq I don't get it, isn't the EA8300 alone $200? :smiley: By the way, how is the EA8300 as router for gigabit speed?

@moeller0 RPi 4 is also on radar however I don't know if the only snapshot support is stable enough and how much linux knowledge is needed to maintain, also doesn't USB ethernet dongles add too much latency? Is there any other mini PC with reasonable power consumption?
But you made me very curious so I'll look into this, I know about the RPi I just don't know nothing about building a config for router use case. I need the board itself of course, a housing, power adapter, ethernet adapter, USB SD reader and something for wifi right? and I only need display to install openwrt I guess. And drivers to make all these work.

@Dopam-IT_1987 I also found these in the thread but they are not available in my country. Don't really know why because we basically have every other Linksys... Belkin seems to be UK model only though

EA8300 which is based on ipq40xx (not to be confused with EA8500 based on ipq806x) is around $100 where I live.

Without SQM it can roughly reach the gigabit, but with SQM you would be limited to about 250 Mbit. Look for ipq40xx results here:

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In my -non-benchmark- tests in a real world environment, ipq40xc maxes out at around 375 MBit/s (plain ethernet WAN, no PPPoE, no SQM) - only software flow-offloading can get it up to my contractual speed limits of (430/220 MBit/s). I would not expect it to do 1 GBit/s routing.

I was looking at the Linksys website for the price that's why I found $200. It seems to be an okay option but maybe better to wait availability of the E8450. Also I'm still exploring the RPi route but components for it have stock problems in my location currently. There are so many routers yet so few are great.

@slh At the moment I'm using TP-Link WR1043ND v2 with default settings+adblock and wired speed is around 390 down, how is it possible?

My test results intentionally omit any kind of 'special' tweaking (aside from enabling irqbalance) or hacks (like software flow-offloading, semi-proprietary SFE, NSS hardware offloading, etc.), as I want to compare the throughput I can rely on under normal- to worst circumstances. Benchmarks cosmetics only detract from the real power you can expect from a device in practice and shouldn't be grounds for the decision to buy a particular one. Once you own it (and experience an unexpected speed upgrade from your ISP), fine, get the most out of whatever you already have, but for me, that strictly is a pleasant 'surprise', a freebie, not something I want to rely on.

Likewise I'd put the speed limit for any known ath79 device (including the archer c7) at somewhere between 150-200 MBit/s. Sure, overclocking, SFE/ software flow-offloading can push that, but you're running on borrowed time (SOC running into 100% load, with zero headroom left, so latencies take a downhill trip).

Yes, I removed my response once I realized given your references that I may not have been comparing apples with apples.

OK so no more decent options than the E8300 or EA8450 if all in one router?ASUS or TP-link models maybe? Or Netgear that is not the 7800? It's not urgent since I only "need" to utilize my Gigabit connection when downloading games which is rare, specially during summer unless I see a good discount on some game I'm interested in :slight_smile:
Meaning that I can wait with the purchase and 380ish download speed is not terrible with my old router.
RPi route seems to be even harder to do if I want to locally source the parts for it. Is there any okay alternative to RPi if I want to use PC? Something more accessible in Europe.

(Ukraine)Plugging the Mikrotik hap ac2. Bought it for about 1800 UAH last month. I like it a lot. It feels well made, has 5 gigabit ports and wireless speed is close to what I pay for(studio appartment). It uses a snapshot, but I have not had any problems, I've only configured VLAN's LuCi tho.

It’s an AP, are you using this with raspberry pi?

With openwrt, nothing is strictly "ap", it's all software-defined. You can even run a device branded as a "repeater" as a router.

It's a router. It has a 5 port switch, a quad-core network appliance SoC, 128 megs of RAM and runs RouterOS. See also their own table of test results.

I'm surprised, they're so ubiquitous in so many places. One huge advantage of the RPi4 is usually the supply.

A post was split to a new topic: GL.iNet devices and OpenWrt support

and @Cheddoleum oh right, once you have the hardware and openwrt is flashed you do whatever want, my bad

@dlakelan I asked and it was incorrectly displayed no stock so I can get the parts.
Which leads to the questions
Only one part I couldn’t figure out by search. What should I look for as WAP? Should I just get basic router like archer C7 to connect the tp-link ue300?

I’m new to this raspberry pi as router thing but it seems doable even with my no Linux knowledge. Mostly it’s because I’m curious, if I fail I just grab a router :sweat_smile:

Bonus dumb question: this method being x86 means that I need a display connected to the pi every time I want to configure something or network access is enough?