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Showing posts with label networking. Show all posts
Showing posts with label networking. Show all posts

TP-LINK 1750: The best router you can buy today

In our previous post, we wrote of the importance of upgrading to 5Ghz WiFi, with the benefits being higher speeds, lower latency and access to a larger spectrum of available channels, which in turn extends range. Today we look at a router that probably gives out the most value for money when upgrading from 2.4 to 5Ghz.
The Tp-Link 1750 Archer C7. The best router you can buy.
The TP-LINK 1750 is recommended for its ease and simplicity of use. At under $60 it becomes an affordable piece of equipment that delivers on the 5Ghz promises for speed, lower latency and channel access.

Buy the TP-Link 1750 from Amazon now:


In terms of design, the router has a polished glossy plastic look that stands out over the legacy routers that most budget users have. It also features 3 antennae, common for most 5Ghz routers and something not found in the older ones. This gives it the multi-band full-duplex features that allow the router to send to and receive from devices simultaneously rather than the single duplex send-wait-receive-wait-send approach which alternates between sending and receiving data.

The router has a WAN or internet port which you use to connect to your modem or existing router, four LAN ports and a USB port. To set it up, you have to connect the WAN port to your modem and connect any wired devices like desktop computers and TVs to the LAN por; plug the power-brick and turn on the device. Once the device starts, it will automatically create two WiFi networks which you can join using the password on the label of the router. Once you’ve joined, you could use the TP-Link Tether app on an android or iPhone device to connect to and set up a WiFi password. Alternatively, you could go to and follow the simple instructions onscreen to set up the router on a computer.

If you want to use the router as a range extender and retain your existing router (which is not recommended if your existing router is old), you could directly connect the WAN/internet port on the new router to a LAN port on the existing router and it would work instantly. You can also set up a guest WiFi network to limit guest users to a lower bandwidth.

The tether app is quite useful, you can use it to block devices, setup parental controls and QoS as well as control the LEDs on the router. For advanced users, the router offers quite a few features. With QoS you could set up speed limits for certain types of applications and devices; and speed up others. You could also use the Tfttt service to remotely control certain functions of the router and get notifications, e.g. disconnect a device when you send a tweet. Ifttt can also work with other smart devices like Phillips hue to perform functions based on remote instructions.
The Archer C7 packaging
You can use the USB port to connect an external flash disk or hard disk and use it as an FTP or media server. This is useful if you want to backup files outside of your main computer or with remote downloading, you can set a file for download on to the external storage while your main computer is switched off.

Its maximum speed is 1.75 Gbps with 1.3 Gbps coming from the 5Ghz stream and 450 Mbps via the 2.4 Ghz stream. It runs quite efficiently using up about 20 watts of electricity. It has full gigabit ports so any wired devices like Computers and TVs get up-to 1Gbps between router and device, however this depends on device’s capabilities too.

The router rates very well in terms of durability too, with many gamers using it for streaming over several hours on a stretch while still resulting in no degradation in quality. For such a quality product packed with features for so low a price, Kategat absolutely recommends this router.

See also

Image of TP-Link 1750 by Firecracker PR on Flickr, used under the CC BY 2.0 license.

The benefits of migrating to 5 Ghz WiFi

Most budget focused consumers don’t upgrade their routers or networking equipment very often. And this results in a few complications. The good old version of WiFi when it launched was known as WiFi b/g which was very good for most applications in the late 2000s. It had a range of about 40 meters (or 125 feet) and a maximum speed of 54 Mbps which was quite good for 2007.
WiFi is ubiquitous but is it getting slower?
WiFi n, brought support for 5Ghz. a maximum speed of 600Mbps and double the range. However, the actual realistic speeds don’t even get close to that theoretical number for a variety of reasons. This is mainly because of an extreme growth in the number of WiFi networks in the past decade that has blocked the 13 channels used in the 2.4Ghz spectrum. Though WiFi n supports 5Ghz a vast majority of routers don’t support it.

WiFi n is supposed to use two channels in the 13-channel spectrum but according to the standard, when the spectrum is congested, it falls back to one channel which brings the theoretical maximum speed to 150Mbps. However, when there are many devices connected to the same network, and the devices are not very close to the router, the speeds drop even further. Because of this, in practical terms the maximum speed you usually get with a traditional router is about 20-30 Mbps on average.

To break free of this you must migrate away from the congested 2.4Ghz spectrum and move to the 5Ghz spectrum. Moving from WiFi n to the ac standard also increases your theoretical maximum to 1Gbps and so the average attainable speed is about 300Mbps which is major upgrade. One other advantage is the reduction in ping times where instead of the 30-40ms delay with traditional older routers, you could get a responsive 2-5ms in most cases which is a big boost to your gaming performance.

Here is a helpful chart that shows the differences between four WiFi standards, WiFi 6 or ax is not available yet, but is included here as a reference to how the WiFi standards would grow in the future.

Chart with a comparison of WiFi g, n, ac and ax. (© Kategat Media 2019; available for re-use under the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0) license).
Chart with a comparison of WiFi g, n, ac and ax. (© Kategat Media 2019; available for re-use under the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0) license).
Here are some TP-Link routers recommended by Kategat:


See also
Image of WiFi symbol, thanks to Christiaan Colen on Flickr. Licensed under the CC BY-SA 2.0 license.