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What's the best wireless ac router for SP2/SP3

I might test another ac 1750 router, the TrendNet TEW-812DRU, before moving on to something a bit up the ladder ... hmm what will it be ... but I'm not quite done with the TP-LINK yet and other needs beckon.

In the meantime keep posting your own experiences...
The 600 Mbps (aka 3x3 TurboQAM on 2.4 GHz) only works on Broadcom devices as I've tested that my SP3 only connects at 300 Mbps while my other laptop with Broadcom BCM4352 gets 400 Mbps link rate.
I might test another ac 1750 router, the TrendNet TEW-812DRU, before moving on to something a bit up the ladder ... hmm what will it be ... but I'm not quite done with the TP-LINK yet and other needs beckon.

In the meantime keep posting your own experiences...

Unless you have multiple streams going on plus 300 Mbps internet or faster and you use your router as your LAN drive server, ac1750 class routers should be more than enough. SP3's Marvell AC WiFi just works well with Marvell chip that is found in the WRT1900AC and that's another reason I bought that router as well.
The 600 Mbps (aka 3x3 TurboQAM on 2.4 GHz) only works on Broadcom devices as I've tested that my SP3 only connects at 300 Mbps while my other laptop with Broadcom BCM4352 gets 400 Mbps link rate.
Yeah, sorry if that wasn't clear although I bolded the Surface 2x2 info above.
A few Surface details, maximums, and wireless tidbits.
All Surfaces are Dual Band 2x2 meaning they have two antennas and support two streams on either 2.4 or 5ghz bands which will determine the maximum connect speed. The connect speed is not fixed but varies due to conditions at the moment. The Surface RT, Surface Pro, Surface 2, and Surface Pro 2 have 802.11 a/b/g/n wireless capability and their maximum connect speed is 300Mbps. The Surface Pro 3 has wireless 802.11 ac capability (a/b/g/n/ac), it's maximum connect Speed is 867/866.5 Mbps and it will also support a/b/g/n wireless communications as well.

Imagine wireless as the waves on a wind blown lake, the walls and objects reflect and disrupt the waves which can reduce the max signal strength but also bounce around corners. Direct line of sight provides the best connectivity although signals can also travel through walls and reflect off walls to adjacent rooms. Your lake is looking a little choppy now. Beam forming technology attempts to manipulate the waves so that a wave peak occurs at your device giving you the maximum signal.

The maximum throughput or transfer rate will be something less than the current connect speed due to overhead and various other factors. Multiple clients/devices connecting to the same router compete or share the available bandwidth so transfer rates may be further reduced if multiple devices are communicating at the same time. On the 2.4 ghz band which is also used by portable phones, baby monitors etc. interference can impact performance as well. Densely packed neighborhoods can have many routers and other devices jockeying for position and congesting traffic like a busy road. The 5ghz band has less congestion from other devices currently although that could change with the Internet of Things and many many devices getting into the act.

Your Router should exceed your Internet and client capabilities so that it can handle multiple devices and dynamically adjust for suboptimal conditions or interference from competing or neighboring devices and still be able to deliver the maximum Internet speed you have subscribed for.

Future technology, wiGig or 802.11ad will introduce another frequency band, 60 ghz for devices to communicate on. This frequency does not travel through walls but is capable of much faster communications within a confined area. Initial speeds will be up to 7Gbps and with 4x4 MIMO could go up to 28 Gbps. This will make it possible to use wireless docking, storage, networking, displays and other devices simultaneously while localizing traffic and offloading the longer range AC and N communications on 2.4 and 5ghz bands.

Best of luck with your wireless adventures.
Final update on the TP-Link Archer C7 1750 Router. I can connect at the maximum capable speed with my SP3 (866Mbps) or Surface 2 (300Mbps) on the 5ghz band. Both are solid and get good local transfer rates and Max on my Internet connection. Both also wake from sleep and resume max speed within a few seconds, sometimes I see the yellow (limited) symbol on the wireless icon for a couple seconds after waking but it's gone and operating at full speed quickly without any intervention on my part. All in all a very good router that works well with my Surfaces and other devices for a reasonable $90.

Oddly on my Lenovo X1 with a TP-Link ac 1200 USB adapter I could not get connected on the 5ghz band however switching to a Linksys ac 1200 USB adapter worked fine, it connected at 867Mbps and was rock solid with good throughput. There in an Intel PCIe half card for laptops that will fit in the X1. I might give it a try although the current Ultimate Wireless N 450 3x3 in it now was all over the place on connect speed anywhere from 170 to 423 maybe the internal has antenna issues.
Briefly tested with the TRENDnet 812DRU ac 1750 Router. It works but not as well as the TP-Link.

Placed in the same location the connection speed is lower and fluctuates more. In actual usage accessing the Internet it seems a little jerky at times. I got disconnected from the router once during testing over a few hours. Local File Transfer speeds were accordingly slower as well. The Internet speed test performed up to the max on my service which is only 50/50 so it should: 58 up 61 down. The guy at SmallNetBuilder really didn't like this router but PC mag did, I didn't think it was as bad or good as either said. It doesn't have external antennas and is shaped like a book so visually it's not as menacing if that matters to you. :)

Surface 2 connected at 270-300, SP3 connections varied from 578 - 702.

I'll update the Firmware and give it another spin.

Edit: After further review I'm bagging the rest of my efforts with respect to the TRENDnet 812DRU
for me at further distances then my default testing distance of 21 feet/6.5 meters the signal drops significantly further reducing connect speeds and throughput. I could find an different spot for the router which would help but in short it's just out classed by the TP-LINK. It will work but the only reason I can see to, buy it is the esthetics of not having antennas bristling from it as all the competitors seem to have. In an office/home office within 20 feet it will be OK.

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I was looking over the ac 1900 class, ac 2350 and ac 3200 class routers and thinking about the coming (not sure when, perhaps soon) routers with the 802.11ad 60ghz band.

We are entering a period of change here where claims and terminology are going to get twisted. Dual Band and Tri-Band don't really have the same meaning although IMO they should. i.e. Dual Band means it works on 2.4ghz band and 5ghz band but not necessarily at the same time. So Tri-Band then works on 2.4/5/60 ghz right??? Not so fast. The Tri-Band routers on the market now (ac 2350 and ac 3200) have 3 radios with two of them on 5ghz using different channels so that's dual 5ghz plus a 2.4ghz band. What will we call a router that supports three actual bands, 2.4/5/60ghz, is anybody's guess. This mashup is an attempt to extend the life/usability of the current technology and playing fast and loose with terminology. Ahh where would we be without marketing. :)

Today, as its used, Tri-Band doesn't mean much to any individual user, particularly a home user as far as speed goes because individual clients don't have the capability to take advantage of it. It's helpful for busy areas with lots of clients connecting to a router or perhaps the Dugar's house with 20 kids all connecting simultaneously with their own devices. The Routers can use different channels and bands to communicate with the many clients but they each have the limitations as today on the 2.4/5ghz bands. In a nutshell, the ac 2350/ac 3200 routers will support more clients but the connect speed of each client will not be faster than an ac 1900 or even an ac 1750 router. All of these routers currently support 1300Mbps on a 5ghz band or 3x 433. If your client is a 1x1 client your max connect is 433. If your client is a 2x2 client your max connect is 866 and If your client is a 3x3 client (very few are and NO Surfaces are currently) your max connect is 1300/1299.

So how do they arrive at 2350 or 3200 or even 1750 and 1900. well it's mostly summing up capabilities of the router. i.e. 1300Mbps on 5ghz + 1300 Mbps on a 2nd 5ghz band + 600 Mbps on 2.4 ghz band = 3200 Mbps for all the bands on the router. 2350 is a bit more complicated as its a 4x4 implementation on the router so its 433 x 4 on 5ghz for 1733 and 600 on 2.4ghz totaling 2333 actually but rounded up to 2350 for marketing unless they used marketing math rules and rounded up to 2400. :) when you define the rules you can do anything you want.

Maybe future clients will get 3x3 or 4x4 implementations but for now we generally don't have it.
I do hope SP4 at least has WiGig/802.11ad 60ghz support. Also perhaps more technically whiz-bang than practical, 3x3 implementation for 2.4 & 5ghz. That extra 433Mbps on 5ghz will mostly go to waste since Internet speed isn't likely to top 100Mbps around here anytime soon. :) and Net Neutrality will only serve to stifle the progress on the upper end.

Bring on the WiGig, I'm itching for the next wavelength. :)
No router for wifi, but only access points from ubiquiti networks.
I'm using 2 AC units:


Always stable at 850 Mbit, no interference with other wifi networks in the neighbourhood (although I think my neighbours are having trouble with my setup :D )
Yeah that might be a bit powerful for a residential setting ... you may have to share with your neighbors :D

aside: last time I was at my dad's some joker had named their ssid "The FBI Surveillance Truck" :D
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One way of looking at the question is by cost/mbps or mbps/cost
Assuming clients are 2x2 capable class.
Here's a chart showing typical max throughputs for different router class and bands. BALLPARK. YMMV.

If you get 400 Mbps and the Router cost 90 dollars then 90/400 = 22.5 cents per mbps
or 400/90 = 4.44 mbps per dollar.
Where 440/150 would give you 2.9 mbps per dollar or 34 cents per mpbs.

Routers do other functions so that may not be your only consideration.