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Linksys AC5400 MU-MIMO Gigabit Router Review: Great Speed and Reach: Page 2 of 3

While larger than many routers to support its eight antennas, the AC5400 reaches farther with faster signals than all others we've tested. By James E. Gaskin

With home consumers come game players, and the AC5400 offers "Media Prioritization" for the game world. You can move gamer machines into the "High Priority" table and dedicate specific bandwidth for them before other devices. Alternatively, you can drag individual applications or games (22 in the drop-down menu, and you can add more) to the same High Priority table.

Speed Test is odd: It reports speeds two or three times slower than a computer running SpeedTest.net through the router. External storage turns an attached USB storage device into a public drive for users. There are no real file access controls, but setup is a snap; just plug in the drive.

Connectivity shows the standard basic, local networking, advanced routing, VLAN (Virtual LAN), and administration details with a friendlier-than-usual face.

Troubleshooting shows Status of connections, DHCP (Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol) client table, diagnostics like ping and traceroute, as well as logs. You must enable the logs. The Status tables show which devices are hardwired or wireless.

Being a wireless router, the AC5400 does the expected good job of presenting and managing wireless details. This page allows you to change all manner of wireless protocol options, and to set MAC filtering .

Security has minimal firewall settings and a basic DMZ (demilitarized zone) configuration. You can route through dynamic DNS providers Dyn.com or NO-IP.com.

The Linksys Next-Gen AC family includes this AC5400 router, the AC600 MU-MIMO Micro USB Adapter, and the AC1900+ range extender (more on the second and third items at another time).

Linksys upgraded its Smart Wi-Fi mobile app with more controls and features. You can turn on and off parental controls and guest networks, reboot, and reprioritize bandwidth for devices. This tool only works with the AC5400 at first, but Linksys plans to expand coverage and will support multiple routers soon.

Summary

As more mobile devices displaying higher definitions sneak into homes and businesses, including Ultra HD/4K TV, your clients will need a better Wi-Fi router. With excellent speed, reach, and configurability, the Linksys AC5400 MU-MIMO Gigabit Router is bigger than most (to handle the eight antennas) and pricier than the cut-rate products. But quality Wi-Fi only comes from a quality router, and the AC5400 reaches farther with faster signals than all others we've tested.

About the Author

James E. Gaskin's picture

JAMES E. GASKIN is a ChannelPro contributing editor and former reseller based in Dallas.

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