A router that belongs to the Wi-Fi 6 wireless standard is known for its advanced features and technologies and the price tag it carries. You’re right. I am talking about Tp-link’s Archer AX50.
Key Highlights: TP-Link Archer AX3000
- The Tp-link Archer AX50 (AX3000) is one of the best affordable Wi-Fi 6 routers available on the market.
- It offers lifetime malware protection for you.
- Speeds over bands—the 2.4GHz and 5GHz— is fantastic, stable, and reliable.
- Easy to install
Overview: TP-Link AX50
The Tp-Link Archer AX50 is somewhere between mid-range and high-range Wi-Fi routers. With a sweet cost of around $150, it is claiming the best Wi-Fi routers under $150. If I take you toward my tests, it performed outstandingly and somehow managed to deliver reliable and stable Wi-Fi speeds as it promises. Yes, you guessed it right, it is because of its Wi-Fi 6 technology.
Besides, it comes with those high-end routers’ features, such as link aggregation, parental controls, lifetime anti-malware, and many others. Compared to its competitors, it is unbeatable and becomes one of the top choices for the best cheapest Wi-Fi 6 routers.
In order to make the review of Tp-link Archer AX50 readable, I’ve divided it into some eye-catching points.
- Wi-Fi speeds
- Features & Technologies
- Tp-Link Tether App
- Installation & Set-up
- My Verdict
Design & Hardware: TP-Link Archer AX50 (AX3000)
There is no doubt saying the design of the router is quite premium. With a matte black finish, it has a two-tone glossy combined with textured grilles on the sides. You might have noticed the same on Tp-Link Archer AX10.
On the front, you’ll see six small LEDs meant for the router’s activities. Besides, it houses four high-gain adjustable external antennas and measures 1.5×10.2×5.3 inches (HWD).
Its back panel is also relatively user-friendly, allowing users to make multiple wired connections via its four Gigabit Ethernet LAN ports and one Internet port or, say, WAN port.
Moreover, it contains one USB 3.0 port and some standard buttons, such as Power On/Off, a power jack, a Wi-Fi/WPS button, and of course, a Reset button. Don’t get confused with the fact that these ports are multi-gig; however, the AX50 supports the Link aggregation feature.
Wi-Fi speeds: Tp-link Archer AX50 Wi-Fi 6 (AX3000)
Its frequency bands—the 2.4GHz and 5GHz bands— are responsible for promising maximum speeds of up to 3Gbps, of course, theoretically. To be more precise, its 2.4GHz band can reach maximum speeds of up to 574Mbps, while the 5GHz band offers 2,402Mbps. It means you get theoretical combined Wi-Fi speeds of up to 2.976Gbps. To be honest, we can not digest such speeds in real life.
However, most people use 100Mbps Internet speed plans; switching to Archer AX50 won’t be an issue to them when it comes to speeds.
Features & Technologies: The Tp-link Archer AX50
If you use your screwdriver, you’ll find a dual-core processor along with RAM (which Tp-link hasn’t shared with me yet). Since the Tp-link Archer AX50 uses the latest wireless standard and Wi-Fi 6 technology, dealing with MU-MIMO and Beamforming is not a big problem to the router.
Therefore these advanced technologies, MU-MIMO for simultaneous data streaming, beamforming for direct to client, and smart connect for band steering, and of course, OFDMA packet transmissions, are up to the mark. However, it doesn’t support 160MHz channel bandwidth or WPA3 encryption, which disappoints me.
Do you remember my previously written article, best Wi-Fi routers for gaming, has one high-end Wi-Fi router and one mesh system: Tp-Link Archer AX11000 and Deco X20, relatively. Likewise, Tp-link offers the same features, parental control, QoS software, and HomeCare suite of anti-malware with this model.
Why I highlighted these features? It is because they are advanced features that you can expect from only high-end routers. For example, Anti-malware offers many features for content filtering, such as quarantine infected clients and time to time security alerts. Furthermore, the QoS feature lets you assign bandwidth priority as per the device’s usages.
TP-Link Tether Mobile App for TP-Link Archer AX50 Router
One of the main things about the Archer AX50 is its mobile app, which allows you to manage it entirely—available for Android and iOS users. Don’t worry; you can do the same using the web console.
For basic settings, The mobile app is easy to use compared to the web. However, its advanced settings require the web console for advanced options such as NAT Forwarding, Firewall, DHCP Server, and IPv6 settings.
Similar to other managing apps, The Tether app also shows the list of TP-Link routers. When you tap the AX50 router, you’ll be on the home screen of the app, which displays both Wi-Fi frequency bands inside the Wireless Tab, along with the Guest Network tab.
Once you click the desired Wi-Fi band, you’ll be able to change its defaults, such as network name, Wi-Fi password, Etc. You also have the smart connect option for creating a single SSID and password for both Wi-Fi bands.
As you can see from the images, its bottom contains four buttons: clients, HomeCare, and tools. The client’s button takes you to a list of connected devices and their IPs. You just need to tap the connected client in order to know its MAC address, date of joining, and used band.
Installation and Set-up: The TP-Link Archer AX50
It actually doesn’t matter what you use: whether it is the TP-Link tether mobile app or the web, you’ll find the process very easy to install. However, I didn’t use the web browser to test the signal strength and throughput. Instead, I chose the Tether app and started the first step by downloading it and creating an ID, of course, TP-Link’s ID.
After clicking the plus sign icon located in the upper right corner, I added a new device and followed the other simple instructions. After that, I turned off the modem and connected it to the router then it was time to power up everything.
As you know, when you power up any Wi-Fi router, all LEDs turn solid. Likewise, the process started with the same solid LEDs indication and ended up connecting to the router’s SSID.
Having clicked the following button, I was asked to enter the Wi-Fi password located on the Wi-Fi card, then clicked I’m Connected. Other steps were common: selecting a connection type, changing bands’ names, and putting new Wi-Fi passwords, Etc. The process ended up updating the firmware; however, it was a brief update and didn’t take much time to complete.
This how you can set up your TP-Link Archer AX50 Wi-Fi router too.
Conclusion: The Archer AX50
There is no doubt that the TP-Link Archer AX50 comes with advanced features. For example, a free lifetime HomeCare subscription (powerful enough to prevent your kids from visiting undesirable contents), advanced Parental control options, Link aggregation, and a fast USB 3.0 port.
However, I can’t ignore that the Tp-Link Archer A50X doesn’t support 160MHz channel bandwidth and poor file transfer performance.
My Verdict: Tp-Link Archer AX50 Wi-Fi 6 (AX3000) Review
Without a doubt, it is by far the best Wi-Fi6 router for under 150 dollars. Its overall performance, robust throughput, and signal strength is enough for the price.