New Linksys WRT1900ACS

Linksys offers new WRT1900ACS – new generation of open source WRT1900 router with faster processor – in addition of Linksys AC1900 line of router products.




 

The design is the same with the older generation of Linksys WRT1900AC that comes with four external antennas, while the younger brother WRT1200AC router comes with two external antennas, color is still the same blue at the top and black at lower part of the body like the legend of Linksys WRT54 router.

What this product does

It is a simultaneous dual band wireless AC1900 router with four external antennas for larger area to cover and in addition of Beamforming technology the router allows all wifi clients connections are solid while roaming within the network coverage. The wireless AC1900 wifi technology delivers total bandwidth of up to 1300Mbps (5GHz band) plus 600Mbps (2.4GHz band). It is a Linux-based firmware router to let advanced users develop the router and tweak the firmware to meet their need with OpenWRT.

Main features

  • Based on wireless AC1900 dual band technology
  • Speeds of up to 1300Mbps (5GHz band) plus 600Mbps (2.4GHz band) for total bandwidth of up to 1900Mbps
  • OpenWRT Linux-based open source firmware
  • Four high performance dual band external antennas with Beamforming technology
  • All Gigabit Ethernet Ports
  • eSATA / USB 2.0 combo port
  • 1x USB 3.0 port
  • Powered by 1.6GHz dual core processor

Physically both original version WRT1900AC and new WRT1900ACS have similar physical design with four external antennas and the good thing is that both are tagged with the same price, MSRP is $229.99 in Linksys store. So why should we purchase the older version if the newer generation performs better? Is there any differences between the two routers? Yes!, at least you can instantly notice from the manufacturer’s spec that the new version comes with faster processor, it is powered by 1.6GHz dual core processor as opposed to only 1.2GHz dual core processor in the original version.

Linksys WRT1900ACS

Comparison

For advanced users they can take advantage of open source firmware and tweak the firmware in order to provide the best features and performance to meet their needs. For normal users no worries this product works well out of the box like other routers in general. This router is based on the wireless AC1900 technology and you know that you have many choices in this class including best seller product in Amazon TP-link Archer C9 router, Netgear Nighthawk X4, popular Asus AC1900 RT-AC68U router, and even new models of Google OnHub router (Asus and TP-link) and TP-link Touch screen router (P5) – all of these are engineered in this wireless AC1900 class.

Let’s have a look at the following comparison tables, easiest way to see at a glance the spec differences (if any) between the routers. Table 1 compares Linksys AC1900 WRT1900ACS with TP-link Archer C9 and tables 2 compares WRT1900ACS with Asus RT-AC87U AC2400 router. Asus AC87U is taken for comparison even though it is not in the same AC1900 class, however the prices are almost the same so it is worth should you require different spec to meet your need.

Wifi Technology

WRT1900ACS and Archer C9 are based on wireless AC1900 simultaneous dual band technology, capable of delivering speeds of up to 1300Mbps in 5GHz band and up to 600Mbps in 2.4GHz band. While Asus AC87U is based on faster wifi – wireless AC2400 delivering speeds of up to 1734Mbps in 5GHz band and up to 600Mbps in 2.4GHz band.

All the three routers come with external antennas and are engineered based on Beamforming technology, even though Asus with AiRadar is naturally based on Beamforming technology. With the same Beamforming technology your clients are beamed with solid signal while roaming within the network coverage in homes.

The other feature that Asus AC87U has that the other two routers don’t have is the multi-user MIMO (MU-MIMO) technology which allows the router to send data to multiple devices at the same time with 4 data streams, where normal MIMO sends data one by one at a time.

Interface Ports

In some particular cases you need more wired connections to the router directly such as when your desktop computers don’t have wifi adapter, and game console and DVR or Smart-TV generally require wired connection. All the three routers come with the same Ethernet ports configuration, all are Gigabit RJ-45 ports.

Particularly gigabit WAN port is a much for your environment that require high speed internet connection by connecting to Gigabit cable modem such as new Surfboard SB6183 – SB6190 or even TP-link offers new DOCSIS 3 cable modem (TC-7610), or you may try Netgear CM600 cable modem.

Regarding the USB ports, all the three routers come with the same configuration of 1x USB 3.0 and 1x USB 2.0 port. Except that WRT1900ACS offers different configuration with USB 2.0 port that is designed with eSATA combo port you can either use USB or eSATA port for storage.

Processor

This Linksys AC1900 WRT1900ACS is the first home router that is powered by high speed 1.6GHz dual core processor so far, we know that fastest wifi speed embedded in AC3100 router such as D-link DIR-885 or Asus RT-AC88U which a single band 5GHz delivers speed up to 2165Mbps is still powered by 1.4GHz dual core processor.

The faster processor and with the addition of 512MB RAM assures very fast tasks processing, compared with the other two routers Archer C9 and Asus AC87U the performance of Linksys is much better.

 

Table 1 Linksys WRT1900ACS Vs Archer C9

Linksys AC1900 WRT1900ACS TP-link AC1900 Archer C9
Wifi technology AC1900 dual band AC1900 dual band
Speeds Up to 1300Mbps (5GHz) plus up to 600Mbps (2.4GHz) Up to 1300Mbps (5GHz) plus up to 600Mbps (2.4GHz)
Antennas 3x high performance dual band detachable external antennas 3x high performance dual band detachable external antennas
Beamforming Yes Yes
MU-MIMO No NO
Ethernet Ports 4x Gigabit LAN and 1x Gigabit WAN Ports 4x Gigabit LAN and 1x Gigabit WAN Ports
USB Ports 1x USB 3.0

1x combo eSATA/ USB 2.0 ports

1x USB 3.0

1x USB 2.0

Processor 1.6 GHz dual core processor

512MB RAM

128MB Flash

1.0 GHz dual core processor

 

Operation modes Wireless router, AP, Wired / wireless bridge Wireless router
Other features Open Source firmware – Linux-based firmware
Price $229.99 $122.00

 

See that the price comparison between WRT1900AC and TP-link Archer C9 is much different, Archer is almost $100 cheaper than Linksys with the absence of minor features such as Linux-based firmware, eSATA port for faster storage but off course lower processor speed. well for users in general, TP-link Archer C9 is worth to purchase than Linksys.

What about Linksys AC1900 Vs Asus AC1900? With the lower processor speed, and the same price – what do you think? For advanced users no reason you choose Asus, but for users in general probably you may consider faster wifi speed for streaming HD video and online gaming through wifi connection.

Table 2 Linksys WRT1900ACS Vs Asus RT-AC87U

Linksys WRT1900ACS Asus RT-AC87U
Wifi technology AC1900 dual band AC2400 dual band
Speeds Up to 1300Mbps (5GHz) plus up to 600Mbps (2.4GHz) Up to 1734Mbps (5GHz) plus up to 600Mbps (2.4GHz)
Antennas 3x high performance dual band detachable external antennas 4×4 MU-MO high performance antenna design
Beamforming Yes Yes – Asus AiRadar technology
MU-MIMO No 4×4 MU-MIMO
Ethernet Ports 4x Gigabit LAN and 1x Gigabit WAN Ports 4x Gigabit LAN and 1x Gigabit WAN Ports
USB Ports 1x USB 3.0 and 1xcombo eSATA/ USB 2.0 ports 1x USB 3.0

1x USB 2.0

Processor 1.6GHz dual core processor

512MB RAM

128MB Flash

1.0GHz dual core processor
Operation modes Wireless router,

AP,

Wired / wireless bridge

Wireless router,

AP,

Media bridge

Other features Open Source firmware – Linux-based firmware AiProtection with Trend Micro

ASUS AiCloud 2.0

Price $229.99 $219.00

 

Click here for Linksys WRT1900AC spec’s detail and current price in Amazon.

See also the new flagship offered by Linksys based on high bandwidth of AC5400 – the Linksys EA9500 AC5400 router

Summary

Linksys AC1900 WRT1900ACS is powerful router ideal for large home and is suitable for advanced users with the Open Source firmware OpenWRT, even though normal users can easily take advantages of this product to work out of the box like other wireless routers in general.


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Cheers, Ki Grinsing.

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