Earlier this year, Asus announced the beginning of sales new models with support for 802.11ac routers, in particular a top unit RT-AC5300 and high end solutions the RT-AC88U . At the same event was broadcast and a more accessible router – Asus RT-AC1200G+. It combines support for two bands, 802.11ac, Gigabit LAN port, and a USB 2.0 port is present. This device is a younger model of the current generation routers AC1200-class companies. It is in particular expressed at a relatively low cost.
As we have repeatedly said, the organization of the wireless network in the 5 GHz band and 802.11ac protocol allows mobile devices today provide computers and high-speed and stable network connection. In this model, the entry-level routers typically have a single antenna and realize connection speed 433 Mbit / s, but their wired ports are often limited to 100 Mbit / s, so that the potential of the modern wireless standard remains unfulfilled. Therefore, if there is no purpose to save money, but also have equipment that would be useful fast wired connections, it is better to look towards the routers with the formula 867 + 300 + 1000 where the two antennas, and gigabit switch installed wireless access points. Just under this scheme up and running Asus RT-AC1200G+, which we will introduce in this article.
This model belongs to the middle segment and the manufacturer has chosen to package the traditional version, without any frills. Framed box is quite familiar for this company – dark tones, pictures, specifications, key features, wiring diagram, comparison with other models, and the like.
Package as standard – the router, power supply (12 V 2 A), patch cord, quick reference guide, warranty card. Note that the power supply in this model is quite large and can block the adjacent outlet in the “pilot.” In addition, he used the shortened “thick” plug. Of course, most users will be formally connected with a complete model is the power supply, but perhaps it would be more convenient to unification. Asus changes connectors too often, in our opinion.
As with other network equipment, the company provides a warranty for this model in three years. The site presents the manufacturer update the firmware, utilities and documentation.
The router Asus RT-AC1200G+ is not very different in appearance from its brothers. Make sure you can probably only four separate antennas (two on each band). Dimensions of the main body 207 constitute × 149 × 36 mm.
Fixed antenna located on the sides and rear. The fixed part of the router Asus RT-AC1200G+ increases the required space with these parties about 25 mm. The length of the moving part is 173 mm. Hinges antennas have two degrees of freedom.
The case is made of black matte plastic. On the top panel, we see the familiar “diamond” texture and stripe, executed by rough grinding.
Also here there are nine LEDs (blue and bright enough) and the model name.
On the side, in addition to antennas, have ventilation grilles. They also covered most of the floor. Plants can be used for the four rubber feet or holes for any of the four positions on the vertical wall.
All connectors and buttons are located at the back: power supply input from the switch, one USB 2.0 port, a hidden reset button, five Gigabit Ethernet ports, the WPS button.
You can say that the router has been selected to be the traditional design. Due to the installation of four antennas, it may require a little more space in comparison with other models of the class, but this is a significant problem not.
The basis of the router Asus RT-AC1200G+ is focused on creating cost-effective solutions with 802.11ac SoC Broadcom BCM47189. It has a single processing core with the ARMv7 architecture, clocked at 900 MHz. The same is the radio chip that supports 802.11a / n / ac 5 GHz with a maximum connection rate 876 Mbit / s, and the USB 2.0 controller.
To support the implementation of the 2.4 GHz range in 802.11b / g / n standards is an additional chip BCM43217, providing speeds of up to 300 Mbit / s. On the side of the antenna is responsible for work in the 2.4 GHz band, and mounted on the rear panel is connected to the main chip for use in 5 GHz. The amount of flash memory of the router is 16 MB and RAM – 128 MB. A network switch in the model appearance – BCM53125, which made it possible to implement Gigabit speed.
On the main chip is a relatively small radiator. During high load operation of the router notice a slight heating of the body.
Testing was carried out with the router firmware version 18.104.22.168.380.3971.
A router Asus RT-AC1200G+ running AsusWRT proprietary firmware, which we encounter in almost every review of this network equipment manufacturer. So that its capacity, and the interface has long been known and familiar.
The interface is translated into several languages. At the top of the page there are links to reload, jump to the wireless network settings, upgrade firmware, disable USB-drives and other operations.
On the left is a menu with the major groups of settings functions and services pages. “Network Map” to help assess the current status of the device. There is a CPU and graphics memory, client list, the status of external devices.
“Guest Network” allows you to configure up to three additional networks in each range. At the same time, you can choose to have their own names, security keys, working hours, to allow access to the main segment of the home network.
“Traffic Manager” will assess the current rate on interfaces, and configure the traffic control function (QoS).The latter can be operated with the rules for setting priorities or restrictions for traffic about the protocols or clients. The current version of the firmware, we would not recommend its use in terms of routing performance.
Service “Parental Control” allows you to specify for each LAN client its own weekly schedule Internet access up to an hour. And recently it appeared Yandeks.DNS support service that will certainly be in demand by parents. And here it is possible for every network device to install one of the three modes – safe, children or without restrictions.
Section «USB-application”, as its name implies, provides control of USB-related port services. Here are: Configuration Wizard remote access to files via the Internet FTP AiDisk Protocol (AiCloud service in this model), setting protocols SMB, FTP, media services DLNA and the iTunes, configure the print server (for printers – LPR, for the MFP through a special program for Windows) and 3G / 4G modems. Note that the implementation of the stand-alone file downloading system of this model is not as redundant mode the main channel to the Internet via cellular modem.
wireless access point settings are pretty standard. In particular, here you can select the network name, mode protection (including RADIUS), the number and width of the channel. In additional parameters have filters clients MAC-addresses, WPS and WDS, setting work schedules Wi-Fi (hourly for a week) and other service options. But the output power limit the possibilities for this device, we have not found.
Under “Local Area Network” is also nothing unexpected. It is possible to change its own internal address of the router, DHCP server configuration (including backup client address), add your own routes, IPTV setup (including the allocation of the port console, VLAN, IGMP, or inclusion udpxy). On the page «Switch Control» we see a confirmation of the lack of hardware NAT in the current version of the router firmware: regardless of the setting and the mode status is always indicated «NAT traffic is processed by the processor.”
To connect to the Internet via cable supports all common options – IPoE, PPPoE, PPTP, L2TP. There is the realization and the IPv6 protocol. To implement remote access, you can use a dozen services a Dynamic DNS, including the Asus brand. Present technology implementation DDNS, DMZ, UPnP and manual setting rules of ports translation.
In a router Asus RT-AC1200G+, you can configure additional clients to connect to remote networks via protocols PPTP and L2TP.In addition, it can also act as a PPTP server. Unlike older models, OpenVPN support is not implemented.
In the “Firewall” security features are presented – URL filters and keywords, as well as custom rules for network services. Also there is a firewall for IPv6 protocol.
Section “Administration” has a familiar structure – firmware update to work with the configuration, change the operating mode (router, access point or Mediamost), change the administrator password, set the clock, allow remote access to the router interface and others. Note the presence of options enable access to telnet console and choose an action for a button on the router.
Traditionally, this device manufacturer, the firmware enables the user to view a wide variety of internal tables for a more detailed diagnosis and condition monitoring of possible problems. In addition to the normal magazine, which is maintained in a router Asus RT-AC1200G+ or can be sent to the syslog server, there are: a list of the wireless clients with the indication of connection and signal speeds, table issuing DHCP addresses, the state of the IPv6, the routing table, the list of forwarded ports (including and UPnP) and the currently active sessions.
In certain situations, can be useful tools and integrated ping, tracert, nslookup, and netstat. There is a web interface and built-in service to enable customers in the power supply network sending them WOL packets.With this you can make a list of them in advance and keep it in a router.
In general, we see in the firmware of the model of the router bit advanced relative to the initial level set functions without AsusWRT characteristic of top-end segment of the services. It would be sufficient for most users of the device.
The current version of the firmware of the router Asus RT-AC1200G+ handles traffic solely by software, so that at high load in synthetic tests noticeable delays when working with a web interface. However, in real situations, such loads are not usually found. For the same reason, the speed in full-duplex mode is not more than 1 Gbit / s.According to the manufacturer, is working on improving the firmware to avoid the problems described above.
The first chart shows the results of the research performance of the router in routing problems with an Internet connection by protocol IPoE, PPPoE, PPTP and L2TP. Testing was conducted in a one / two threads 16 and threads. On the network client to use Intel I350-T2 adapters, they worked with a 64-bit operating system Windows 8.1 with all updates at the time of the test.
As we can see, despite the lack of hardware accelerators, in all modes of the model shows almost the maximum results. Unlike other fast routers can be seen only in full-duplex mode, which efficiency in the RT-AC1200G+ with the current firmware version is limited to 1 Gbit / s. Note that in the case of such high loadings of synthetic web interface of the router may noticeable “brake” because of the above. However, in practice the occurrence of such a situation is unlikely.
Testing the wireless router Asus RT-AC1200G+ access points was held jointly with the client adapter equipped Asus PCE-AC68 and smartphone Zopo ZP920 +. Both devices support dual band and 802.11ac protocol. In this case, the adapter uses three antennas and the maximum connection speed of 600 and 1300 Mbit / s for the ranges 2.4 and 5 GHz, respectively, while the smart phone has only a single antenna and can operate at 150/433 Mbit / s.
On the air at the time the test was attended by many networks in the 2.4 GHz band and a couple in the 5 GHz band. The router was configured for maximum performance – a fixed number of the channel width of 40/80 MHz for the 2.4 / 5 GHz, encryption, WPA2-PSK. Testing was conducted in the communication between LAN and WLAN segments in one / two threads and eight threads.
The following graph shows the results of testing with a desktop computer. At the same time it was located at a distance of about four meters from the router.
Recall that a router Asus RT-AC1200G+ is considered the maximum connection speed of 300 Mbit / s for 802.11n 2.4 GHz and 867 Mbit / s in the 5 GHz 802.11ac. With this in mind, the results displayed can be considered quite good for 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz for excellent.
The second test of the wireless segment was conducted with a smartphone by connecting it to the 2.4 GHz band. Note that the configuration in this case is rather theoretical value and is used for estimating a router capabilities when operating in this range. As the air was a lot of neighborhood networks, they, of course, had an impact on the test. Most likely, in the freer air of the results will be better. On the other hand, most users face such problems in urban apartment buildings.
Testing was carried out with a smartphone in three points the apartment – at a distance of four meters from the line of sight of the router, four meters across one wall and eight meters through two walls. The last option only worked on the 5 GHz band. Its use in the 2.4 GHz band resulting in a very low speed and unstable. The same situation was observed in the majority of other tested routers and is not a surprise or disadvantage of this device.
In spite of the difficult environment, this configuration, however, shows a relatively good results in the first two points. In one room, you can expect a rate of about 60 Mbit / s, which is enough, in particular, and to view HD-video, not to mention the usual for scenarios smartphones as browsing websites on the Internet, chat in messengers, software installation and backing up photos. Moving the smartphone in another room a significant impact on speed, especially when transferring data from the mobile device to the router. But in this case, it is unlikely the occurrence of the problems associated with the network access performance, the majority of users. However, here we should not forget that much depends on the implementation of the wireless controller and antenna in a smartphone. We met with the fact that low-cost model is not the most well-known brands may have a Wi-Fi «for show” and not to show good results, even in ideal conditions.
But of course, much more interesting to use the 5 GHz band. It can not only get faster, but also to provide work at a greater distance. At least as long as the neighbors do not begin to use it, too.
Maximum output in this case is greater than 250 Mbit / s, for a smartphone is more than enough for even the most demanding tasks. Not to mention the fact that most of the proposals providers are below this bar.Excellent proved apparatus and adding and increasing the distance of obstacles in the form of the walls – even at the farthest point rate does not drop below 160 Mbit / s. This test confirms once again repeatedly voiced thesis that if you want quality and fast wireless connectivity – should look at 802.11ac standard equipment, the benefit it is no longer exotic and the choice is wide enough.
The router Asus RT-AC1200G+ has a USB port and then connect an external storage device can act as a mini-NAS. However, in this mode, the speed is likely to be low, since only supported version 2.0 USB standard. To test, we used the SSD adapter to the USB bus. partitions with different file systems have been created on the disk. Testing was carried out reading and writing large files via SMB and FTP, which are supported by the router.
The maximum reading speed in this scenario is about 35 MB / s.Burn files to disc, you can at a speed of about 30 MB / s. The most suitable file systems is to recognize the options EXT, which is to be expected. For NTFS in firmware device is likely to use public driver (instead of the more expensive commercial devices), so that in this case the recording speed is less than 5 MB / s. If we talk about the protocols, FTP is faster, though less convenient for basic applications.
Get adequate PPTP server speed test results could not be in a router. High load, which creates a test suite, it was not too tough.
Wireless router Asus RT-AC1200G+ interesting, first of all, support for 802.11ac protocol and the availability of Gigabit Ethernet ports. Its technical capacity will be sufficient for the majority occurring on client configurations market. The model is familiar from other devices Asus design and characteristic of the brand’s high-quality manufacturing. Furthermore, the device supports the attachment to the wall and is fitted USB port.
Firmware AsusWRT in addition to the basic feature set has a setting for the organization of guest wireless network and install the timetable Wi-Fi, maintenance USB-drives, printers, modems, parental controls and support Yandeks.DNS, as well as some other interesting services. However, it should be noted that, in spite of the unification, there are differences from the top models of the company, we have considered this year.
Testing device performance has shown that it is able to provide internet access in all modes with a maximum speed of 1 Gbit / s. However, in the current version of the firmware is not implemented support for hardware NAT, which can in some cases lead to high CPU utilization and the associated negative effects. This is probably due to the use of the new Broadcom platform, under which the company has not yet had time to optimize all the necessary modules. To speed and coverage when working with wireless segment in the 5 GHz band there are no comments. At 2.4 GHz, taking into account the charged air, the device also has acted well. Performance NAS script version is limited support USB 2.0, but in general, and this option can be useful.
The device is a younger model in the current line of routers Asus AC1200-class Gigabit Ethernet ports. It may be interesting to a wide range of users who are interested in the realization of high-quality wireless 5GHz 802.11ac protocol on the equipment well-known brand.