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Asus RT-AC86U & AiMesh Simple Test

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Preface
Asus AC68U has always been a classic. First, it has strong performance, supports 802.11AC standard, and wireless performance reaches 600+1300Mbps. Although it has been on the market for a long time, many parameters are still very powerful. Secondly, the appearance is absolutely classic, so that the horizontal version AC87U and Octopus AC5300, which came on the market later, cannot surpass it. Fortunately Asustek did not forget this in the end. The replacement AC86U was launched in the middle of last year. The original AC68U can finally be laid off. Here is the simple test.

Product specification


Out of the box

Asustek router has a unified outer packaging design with white background and blue and black fonts, which is not as grandiose as ROG series.

Asustek’s quality is rock solid – there is still a premium for the brand.

Dual – core 1.8GHz, now this era is in the core of the heap


The back is an introduction to the main functions.


The introduction of the processor is based on Broadcom’s scheme and is equipped with a BCM4906 dual-core 1.8GHz processor with a 28nm process.

The WIFI signal Range Boost enhancement effect is displayed. the WIFI module uses a combination of BCM4365E+BCM4366E, 256MB Flash, 512MB RAM, 4*4MU-MIMO support, 2.4G 750Mbps, 5G 2167Mbps. A series of parameters are still very attractive. Compared with their flagship, they are no worse.

APP control on mobile phone is a trend. When it was first launched, it only supported Android system. Now both systems are perfectly supported.

Asus Router Firmware’s Simplicity and Ease of Use Has Been the Greatest Highlight

BoxBottom


The main parameters can be seen on the side of the box.

At the top of the box is an important identification code.

The other side of the box can see the display of all interfaces, only 4 LAN ports are provided, and more and more devices are connected in the home. it would be perfect if the 8 ports, 1 port and 2 ports provided by AC88U can converge ( in fact, I think too much )

Inner box of white box


The first thing I saw was a quick installation instruction, but it was not bad for a novice.


Below is the router wrapped in plastic bags.

The environmental protection inner box is still relatively strong.

The whole set is packed in plastic bags with their own identification codes


Host computer, three gain antennas, power adapter, 1 network cable, warranty, instruction manual, quick installation instruction

The design of the shell and the AC88U in front are unified series, and red and black are unchanged classics.

The angular design has a strong sense of science and technology.

The side can be seen exactly like AC68U

The back is exactly the same as AC68U.

The cooling holes are also very similar to AC68U.


There are no keys on the other side

The frosted surface can be clearly seen from this side.

The LOGO of ASUS on the front and the skin-like material on the surface of the shell are definitely fingerprint collectors.

There are a total of 8 indicator lights arranged in a row under the front, including LAN1, 2, 3, 4, WAN, 2.4G, 5G and power supply.



Two buttons on the side, WPS button and WIFI switch, can directly switch off the wireless in case of radiation.


The interfaces on the back are: power switch, Reset switch, power interface, 1 USB2.0, 1 USB3.0, 1 gigabit WAN port, 4 gigabit LAN port, LED switch

Yellow 4 Gigabit LAN Ports

I am very curious why USB2.0 interface is still provided, is it for compatibility? The acrylic LOGO decorative board in the middle has only decorative effect, and the original nightlight has been cancelled.


3 gold-plated SMA universal antenna interfaces


The bottom and the fuselage are integrated and equipped with large-area anti-skid strips. It is inevitable that they will not resist dirt. The biggest regret is that there is a huge V – shaped gap between the base and the fuselage. It is definitely easier to accumulate dust than to remove it. If the base can be disassembled, it can be solved perfectly.


Three 5dbi gain antennas with flat design and sharp edges


The Effect of Installing Antenna

The whole machine adopts a standing design, which not only saves space, but also helps to dissipate heat.


The standard posture of three antennas is claimed to have the best WIFI signal strength and coverage under this posture.


The volume of the external power adapter is well controlled.


Delta OEM, Input 100-240V 1A 50-60Hz, Output 19V 1.75A

Only a black cable is attached, and there is no metal shield on the terminal. After all, it is not a flagship. It seems that ASUS’s flagship or sub-flagship is equipped with a cable with a metal shield.


Plug in the power and get ready to power on.


The power is 0.11w when it is not turned on. It seems that if you want zero power consumption, you can only unplug the power cord.


After starting up, the indicator light is only light white light.


At this time, the power consumption is 8w, 0.008*24*365=70.8kwh, that is, 70 degrees of electricity a year.


After the power-on is completed, the WAN port is red because there is no network cable.


Firmware analysis

The new router will be detected automatically after the power is turned on. Please use a domineering name and never use admin again.

Immediately updated



Normal login interface


The only bright spot of the familiar interface is the addition of an AiMesh.


Let’s briefly introduce some functions. The visitor network must be turned on. Now the WIFI master key is still very powerful.

Intelligent Network Guard

Can open the first line of protection


Parental control is a sharp weapon that can limit bad content.


Select a specific terminal


Set the usage time interval


The controversial QoS, I feel free, is better than nothing


USB applications, commonly used is the network printer service, directly follow the prompt to install

Wireless network settings, turn on roaming assistant – the key to flexible and automatic switching of multiple APs; And the region can choose – can switch to the region with high transmission power, after all, the restrictions of the national bank are large.


The router provides four modes: wireless router mode, AP mode, relay mode and AiMesh node mode


AiMesh node mode


If you can choose a region, the significance of the Smart Connect rule is not very great.


App

Open the APP terminal of the mobile phone and automatically identify the host computer.


The main interface provides real-time data and the main information is clear at a glance


Equipment, Monitoring, Home Subinterface


Other functions, related APP


test

A total of 10 test points are selected, and the red five-pointed star is the place where the router is placed.


Using WIFI analyzer to test the signal strength, the comparison object is AC87 of the previous generation. When choosing CHINA, the signal increased slightly. After choosing US, the increase of 2.4G was obvious, but 5G remained the same.


Use SPEEDTEST to test network speed.



Telecom’s 100 megabytes of broadband, uplink is really terrible


Upload can basically be ignored, as long as the download speed is compared. When choosing CHINA, the two points e and f are blind areas, especially the 5G signal cannot be connected at point f.


The 2.4G signal is obviously improved when US is selected in the region, but the 5G signal is not much better, but point F can be connected.


Prepare for AiMesh improvement signal



Many products support free AiMesh. I don’t know how it works. after all, the price of Mesh in front is not low.


AiMesh host is ROG GT-AC5300


AC86U needs to press Reset to reset


AC86U was successfully found and set as the node of AiMesh.


After successful setup, the number displayed at AiMesh Node is 1


The biggest advantage of AiMesh is that the secondary router can still update the firmware. If it is set to AP, only the primary router can be seen.


AiMesh not only supports wireless expansion, but also supports wired expansion, which is a good point.


Node routers are set at red circles


The signals at D, E and F are obviously enhanced



The results were mixed. 5G was greatly enhanced and almost ran full, but 2.4G seemed very helpless.


Human flesh roaming switcher, walking back and forth, packet loss is inevitable, it seems seamless roaming still needs efforts


I’m going to expand by wire, but the primary and secondary routers are not directly connected ( add a switch ). I found AC86U offline from the mobile phone side.


It seems that AiMesh can only be regarded as a dessert now. Finally, it should be set to AP mode first. The 2.4G signal of AP mode runs below.


5G Signal for Running in AP Mode

Do not give up or try wired backhaul, after all, this is the biggest bright spot, unexpectedly can directly set up Mesh on the AP router
Setting up wired successfully
2.4G speed
The speed of 5G


Room temperature 11.0 ℃, humidity 50%


Direct hand-held temperature gun measurement, accuracy is not very high, only for reference


Frontal temperature

Back surface temperature

Summary

1. It has been on the market for some time and the price is slightly loose. The 1.8G dual-core and 750+2166Mbps wireless specifications are still competitive in configuration.

2. The shape continues AC68U’s classic vertical style, which takes up less desk space and is more pleasing with red and black tones and angular embellishments.

3, can choose areas, WIFI signal coverage has been enhanced;

4. The addition of free Mesh greatly improves the scalability, but obviously the firmware still needs to be improved. At this stage, I still choose AP for expansion.

5. Since there are many functions to form a wireless grid network, I hope to add testing tools to APP to optimize the overall network.

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