Review: TP-Link Archer AXE75 Wi-Fi 6E Router

Last week the UPS guy knocked on my door and handed me a package. I wasn’t expecting anything but after checking my email, it turns out that I should have been expecting this:

This is the TP-Link Archer AXE75 Wi-Fi 6E Router. It promises speedy WiFi 6E support at an affordable price. Let’s take a closer look at the router.

The router has six non-removable antennas. This means that if you break one, you are sending the whole router in for repair. I should also note that you can see wires at the hinge which I am not sure how I feel about that. It is made of plastic and feels on the lightweight side of things.

The front has a bunch of LEDs that let you know what the status of the router is at a glance.

You get four gigabit ethernet ports and a gigabit WAN port.There are also buttons to turn on and off the LEDs, activate WPS, turn on and off WiFi, and a reset button. Plus there’s a on/off switch and a power connector.

Finally there’s a USB 3.0 port on the right side which can act as an FTP media server or connect to a USB-enabled printer for anyone on the network. 

Bonus points for the tiny printed QR code on the bottom that can quickly connect you to the preset Wi-Fi when the Archer is powered on, alongside the usual default passwords and networking info. More bonus points for the included quick installation guide being very clear with simple diagrams and even another QR code linked to instructional videos. That made setup insanely easy. You can either use a web page to configure things or you can use the Tether app which is available for iOS and Android.

So here’s the question. What’s the performance of this router over WiFi? Well, I will say this. I didn’t have a chance to test this with WiFi 6E devices as I could not source any. But over WiFi 6, I was pretty impressed. First, here’s a speed test while in the same room as the router:

This is pretty good. But it’s about to get better. Starting with this test from the other side of my sub 1000 foot condo:

The upload speed took a bit of a hit. But this is still a good result as a lot of routers struggle at providing decent speeds across the length of my condo. I decided to push the envelope a bit and dive into my den which introduces two concrete walls into the mix.

While there was another hit to the speed that I was getting, this is better than most routers that I have tested with the exception of mesh routers. Speaking of mesh routers, you can use this in a mesh setup if you need additional coverage. That’s a nice touch.

Finally, I went outside my condo and walked twenty paces down the hall. That introduces a concrete wall into the mix

This is pretty good actually as I was expecting it to slip into sub 100 Mbps speeds.

Based on this testing, I would say that TP-Link’s claim that this router will cover a house the size of a 2 or 3 bedroom house is confirmed. And if it doesn’t you can always leverage the mesh option to enhance things.

Now besides some decent amount of configuration, you get TP-Link’s HomeShield network management as part of the deal. Though it is locked to the Tether app and a monthly or yearly subscription. Parental controls, in particular, require signing up for the paid service. If you’re expecting to set network time limits for your children’s devices, you won’t be able to do it for free which is a bit of a #fail as some of TP-Link’s competitors allow you to do this for free. For a fee of $5.99 US, will you be also able to access security features like DDoS protection and malicious content filtering. In-depth device traffic statistics, including time spent online and visited URLs, are, among others, restricted to the paid subscription. You can see what you get for free and for a subscription here.

So, what are the cons to this router? Well the main limiting factor is that the WAN port is a gigabit port. That’s a problem in someplace like Canada where 8 Gbps Internet is suddenly a thing. But other than that, this is a pretty good deal. I found it on Amazon for $399 CDN which makes it a great price for a WiFi 6E router. And this is something that I would recommend for someone who wants a router that allows them to have great range, great speed, and the ability to expand to a mesh system. Plus you get to future proof your network with WiFi 6E support. What more could you ask for?

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