Question Suggestions for replacement for RT-AC3200 router and potentially new modem?

May 20, 2020
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(House is 2,822 sqft)

I have been using a RT-AC3200 for a couple of years now and recently it has been having speed dropping issues for both my hardwired and wifi connections. I have also noticed that the devices in my basement (router is located on 1st story of 2 story house) have also been suffering pretty drastically with speed drops, specifically my Roku box. I did a hard reset and nothing improved. Can I get suggestions on a router to replace my RT-AC3200?

I also have been using a motorola surfboard sb6120 that is quite old, but the speeds seem fine when I connect straight to it. I pay for the Xfinity Performance Pro plan that says I should get speeds up to 200 mbps and I have speed tested speeds of around 120-130 mbps. This seems alright, but I am open to replacing my modem if that would help, too.
 
You have 3 radios on that device. It would be extremely unusual for all 3 chips to fail at the same time. Maybe make sure that the 3 radios have different ssid so you can force a connection to each to see if there is a difference.

It would not be unusual to get 120mbps on wifi on a different floor than the router. That tends to be your end devices rather than the router in most cases. Portable devices have low power radios and small antenna.

Try newer firmware and maybe try the Merlin image that is supported by that device.

A router like you have is already overkill for most people. It is very hard to use 3 radio bands and going higher than 3x3 mimo does not help much. Most device only have 2 antenna.

Realistically I would buy the same router if money is not a issue. Otherwise look at a tplink with a number like 1450 or 1750.
 
May 20, 2020
3
0
10
0
You have 3 radios on that device. It would be extremely unusual for all 3 chips to fail at the same time. Maybe make sure that the 3 radios have different ssid so you can force a connection to each to see if there is a difference.

It would not be unusual to get 120mbps on wifi on a different floor than the router. That tends to be your end devices rather than the router in most cases. Portable devices have low power radios and small antenna.

Try newer firmware and maybe try the Merlin image that is supported by that device.

A router like you have is already overkill for most people. It is very hard to use 3 radio bands and going higher than 3x3 mimo does not help much. Most device only have 2 antenna.

Realistically I would buy the same router if money is not a issue. Otherwise look at a tplink with a number like 1450 or 1750.
Thanks for the suggestions. It shows that the firmware is up to date, and I set up different names for each of the ssids. Unfortunately, the speed drops occur on both 5 ghz ssids and on the 2.4 ghz ssid. Sorry, I also meant to say that I get around 120 mbps without drops only when I connect straight from my modem which is a motorola surfboard sb6120 and was wondering if maybe my modem is outdated and I need to replace it?

Are the tplink routers that you suggested of the same quality as the RT-AC3200 or is that the best router available? Is there a way I could use my router for the basement and have the new router set up on the first story?
 
You have to be somewhat careful of the big number trap. Your current router has 3 radios. To actually get the bandwidth you must manually allocate them to different devices. It doesn't increase a single machine speed.

The other things is the asus router like many other devices also supports things like 200mhz channels on the 2.4g. This is a non standard extension that many devices do not support. This is the same as device that support 1024 qam. This is actually part of wifi 6 and is not officially supported on wifi5 (802.11ac).

I like asus routers mostly because you can load merlin firmware on many of them. TPlink like asus has a very advanced factory image with lots of features.

When you talk the radios and the signal levels etc. Pretty much if you get routers with the same numbers on the box you will likely find the same radio chips inside.

You will not see significate difference in the coverage between the major brands, they all have learned all the tricks of the chipset. This is still a work in progress of 802.11ax so those you likely want to wait a bit more to buy.

Modems are pretty dumb their either work or they have issues. Mostly a problem with a modem is packet/ping loss. There pretty much is it docsis 3 or 3.1 and how many channels does it support. This is more a function of you ISP and how they set things up. If you plan to get a faster conneciton you might have to upgrade. The ISP will clearly tell you if they upgrade things and you have to replace the modem. I know some for example upgraded their minimum plan to 100mbps and that require people to buy a new modem but they got the faster connection for the same price as their old plan. People who rented the modem were just sent a new one.
 

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