I'm having trouble choosing between two of these routers:
- ASUS RT-AC1300UHP (77USD)
- Xiaomi Redmi AC2100 (35USD)
My main use cases are:
- SQM on a 80/60Mbps link.
- Central WiFi router for a medium sized one-story home. I need decent coverage for most of the house, as the house plan doesn't have ethernet cabling, so I can't easily expand with more AP.
- WireGuard server. I don't need super decent bandwidth here, just good enough so I can browse the Internet outside of the house.
- IPv6 WAN (not sure if it matters but I've read that some devices can't?).
Here's what I know about each of these devices:
- Weird VLAN configuration. I can live with this though, as stock configuration would serve me well.
- The WiFi chipset is weaker than that of the Xiaomi in theory, however there's decent(?) driver support. As far as I know the ath10k driver have airtime fairness, which should help a lot with bufferbloat over wifi.
- Lacks HW offloading, not that it matters much as I won't saturate the router with my current link, and that SQM doesn't work with it. But it's still a point of consideration for future-proofing if I ever upgrade my link to greater speed.
- Seems to require a custom firmware to unleash full potential (crypto cores, good wifi calibration, etc.), at least from what I'm seeing for the Linksys EA6530v3, which is a router using the same ipq4018 SoC.
- Seems to not have a good way to debrick without a serial cable.
- The mt76 driver is far from decent. I've read stories of how it crashes and how the range is terrible, but this information might be outdated.
- The SoC is weaker than that of the Asus. However this SoC does have HW offloading support.
- The installation method is complicated and require an exploit that might be patched by Xiaomi in the future.
- Have a built-in recovery system based on TFTP and can have a custom bootloader flashed. I've backed up a copy of the current firmware which should still contain the exploit as a safeguard.
- The wireless hardware is supposedly superior compared to the Asus, however I'm not really confident about the software side.
Price/perf wise the Xiaomi is obviously on top of the race, however I'm being tipped off to the Asus due to the potential problems with the wifi on the Xiaomi due to the mt76 driver. Can someone let me know how well this driver work and whether it gives off decent coverage? I plan to use both wireless channels if that matters.