For homes with multiple Smartphone devices and tablets (either Android or iOS) and couple of Laptops, a medium class wireless AC router is enough to smoothly accommodate them connecting to the internet, streaming HD video, online gaming and other internet tasks. Various models of wifi router under $50 are worth of purchasing and two of them are TP-link Archer C2 AC750 and Linksys AC900 routers.
TP-link AC750 routers
TP-link offers three models of wireless AC750 router including Archer C2, Archer C20 and Archer C20i. Are there any differences among the three routers? Basically they have the same features but couple of things are different you can see from the following comparison table.
The first difference is the antenna design, Archer C2 and C20 have two external antennas while the C20i has internal antennas (so does Linksys EA6200) as shown in the first row of the table. The second difference is about the Ethernet ports as shown in the second row of the table, the Gigabit (10/100/1000Mbps) and the fast Ethernet (10/100Mbps). You see that the Archer C2 comes with full features including gigabit ports and 2 detachable antennas you can replace with other high gain antennas for longer coverage as opposed to fixed antenna in Archer C20.
With gigabit ports, you have advantage of connecting to gigabit wired devices especially gigabit WAN port to allow you connect to high speed DOCSIS 3 cable modem such as TP-link TC-7610 or Surfboard SB6141 for ultimate or blast internet plan.
Table 1 Archer C2 Vs C20 Vs C20i
|Archer C2||Archer C20||Archer C20i|
|Antenna||2 detachable external antennas||2 fixed external antennas||3 internal antennas|
|Ethernet Ports||1x Gigabit WAN
4x Gigabit LAN
|4 10/100Mbps LAN ports
1 10/100Mbps WAN port
|4 10/100 LAN ports
1 10/100 WAN port
All the three routers are ideal for homes with less dense of wifi devices. For larger home with heavy duty tasks including 4K video streaming, online gaming and several devices connect concurrently you may consider high end routers such as TP-link Archer C3200 router or you may prefer the all-in-one device Archer CR700 cable modem router combo that comes with wireless AC1900 technology.
Archer C2 Vs EA6200
Now let’s compare between TP-link Archer C2 and Linksys EA6200 where both are tagged with almost the same price in some online stores such as Amazon. Actually they are in different wireless AC class, however not too far is the gap between the two regarding the speeds.
Have a look at the table 2 that compares the two routers, you see that the Archer C2 is based on wireless AC750 while Linksys EA6200 is based on Wireless AC900. The difference is in the 5GHz band speed, while in 2.4GHz band the speeds are the same up to 300Mbps wireless N.
EA6200 delivers up to 565Mbps as opposed to Archer C2 which is up to 433Mbps in connecting to Wireless AC devices in 5GHz band. Off course this is a theoretical speeds, the real things would be different depends on many factors including mater obstacles.
The apparent different you can see between the two routers is the antenna design, Archer is designed with external antennas providing Omni directional signal propagation for better wireless coverage. On the other hand, Linksys EA6200 is designed with internal antennas.
Beamforming would take a significant effect should your clients support beamforming as well, the router focuses the beam to the clients with solid signal while roaming within the homes – a good thing for mobile devices.
Wired connection is still important even though you mostly use wifi for mobile devices. Brand new desktops come with gigabit NIC adapter, and wifi adapter is sometimes an option you need to add. With high speed Gigabit wired connection you have four ports available in the router. Both the routers come with the same ports configuration. But for USB port, Linksys is one step more advance compared with Archer C2 with USB version 3 which is 10 times much faster than ordinary USB 2.0.
Sometimes you thank to the wireless On-Off button besides power On-Off button, you can turn off the wifi not to broadcast and use only the wired connection for your desktop or game console. Linksys doesn’t include the wifi on-off button, however you have the power of Linksys Smart-Wifi apps to let you manage your network via the mobile devices. you can prioritize devices for video streaming or online gaming; control what contents are appropriate for your family; or you can manage which devices to connect or disconnect.
Take a look at the following table for spec comparison between TP-link and Linksys.
Table 2 Archer C2 Vs EA6200
|Archer C2||Linksys EA6200|
|Speeds||Up to N300Mbps (2.4GHz) + AC433 Mbps (5GHz)||Up to N300Mbps (2.4GHz) + AC565 Mbps (5GHz)|
|Antennas||Two dual band detachable external antennas (RP-SMA)||Internal antennas with beamforming technology|
|Ethernet Ports||4 10/100/1000Mbps LAN ports
1 10/100/1000Mbps WAN port
|4 10/100/1000Mbps LAN ports
1 10/100/1000Mbps WAN port
|USB Ports||1 USB 2.0 Supports Samba(Storage); FTP Server; Media Server; Printer Server||1 USB 3.0 port for sharing storage|
Wireless On/Off Switch
Power On/Off Button
|Price||$48 (MSRP is $95)||$49 (MSRP is $120)|
For spec and current prices:
- Click here for Archer C2 spec’s details and price in Amazon
- Click here for Linksys EA6200 spec’s details and price in Amazon
Both TP-link Archer C2 and Linksys EA6200 are ideal for small to medium wifi network in homes with multiple mobile devices and computers. Linksys offers more features including beamforming technology, USB 3.0 and Smart-wifi apps for remote network management.