Man, Asus makes lots of routers. This one, constructed of charcoal-coloured plastic Batman would possibly contemplate too aggressively angular, is a dual-band Wi-Fi 6 job with 4 Ethernet ports, 4 antennas, and a single USB port.

In contrast with some, that is an uninspiring variety of appendages, however it actually is all you want for a satisfying community expertise in case you’re simply making an attempt to share a broadband hookup between a gaming PC, a wise TV, and everyone’s cellphone. Asus additionally makes a degree of the AX4200’s open NAT and ease of port forwarding, which can make steady on-line gaming connections simpler.

From the skin, it isn’t a nasty trying unit. From the wedge-shaped college of design, with its 4 antennas standing straight from the again edge, it is moderately small, is mild, and has wall-mounting slots on the again. It is not fully coated in flashing lights both, so it will work in a bed room where you do not wish to get up within the morning with logos emblazoned in your eyeballs.

There is a diploma of future-proofing within the type of a 2.5Gb WAN socket, for when connections that quick turn out to be commonplace, and in case you use LAN integration on two of the Ethernet ports you can pipe virtually all that bandwidth to a single gadget—or you possibly can use the 3603mbps of the 5GHz Wi-Fi connection.

TUF-AX4200 specs

Asus TUF-AX4200 gaming router

(Picture credit score: Future)

Wi-fi commonplace: Wi-Fi 6
Max speeds:  574 Mbps (2.4GHz), 3603Mbps (5GHz)
Ethernet ports: 4 gigabit
WAN: 2.5Gbps
CPU: 2.0GHz, quad core
USB: 1x USB 3.1 Sort-A
Dimensions: 265 x 178 x 70mm
Weight: 575g
Worth: $143 | £156

As this is not a Wi-Fi 6 gadget there isn’t any 6GHz band, and we might suggest avoiding the two.4GHz community, or retaining it for low-demand gadgets, as not solely is it congested however on this router tops out at 574mbps. That is nonetheless rather a lot, however as soon as you have bought a number of streaming sticks and telephones linked you may need your gaming PC to make use of the upper frequency band. There’s beamforming onboard too, to maximise the internets in your basic path.

The antennas are completely connected however nonetheless movable, and apart from the orange flashed on their sides there’s little or no that stands out concerning the AX4200. It is the identical type of primary design we noticed on the likes of the RT-N66U again in 2012, whose 450mbps of Wi-Fi 4 (or 802.11n because it was referred to as again then) is drastically outstripped by the present technology.

Nonetheless, we’re not complaining. A fast test of a widely known buying site exhibits we paid £100 for the RT-N66U 11 years in the past, so have acquired a 155% enhance in Wi-Fi efficiency for a 40% enhance in worth.

One factor that has modified since 2012 is how fast and handy it’s to arrange a brand new router these days.

It is a easy sufficient gadget to make use of—one factor that has modified since 2012 is how fast and handy it’s to arrange a brand new router these days—and if you would like make your property community extra sophisticated you need to use the AX4200 with Asus’ AI Mesh to arrange a community of repeaters to pipe memes throughout the home. 

The only USB port, which is kind of tightly positioned by one of many antennas, and could also be a problem if you wish to stick a thick USB flash drive in it, can be utilized to share storage as a media server, AIDisk, Time Machine, FTP or Samba, or to insert a 4G dongle as a backup connection in case the fibre goes down.

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Asus TUF-AX4200 gaming router

(Picture credit score: Future)
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Asus TUF-AX4200 gaming router

(Picture credit score: Future)
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Asus TUF-AX4200 gaming router

(Picture credit score: Future)
Purchase if…

You simply want a strong router: This mannequin doesn’t include any of the additional options, equivalent to 10Gbps networking, that we’ve seen elsewhere, however there’s lots right here for a small home or household.

Do not buy if…

You’ve got complicated networking wants: In the event you’re on the lookout for absolutely the bleeding fringe of efficiency, or want to attach lots of Ethernet cables with out passing them via a hub, then this isn’t for you. 

The on-board software program, which all runs on a 2.0GHz quad-core CPU with slightly little bit of RAM and flash storage connected, is nicely featured. There’s adaptive QoS, so you possibly can preserve your video games machine first within the queue for the internets, a visitor community, varied bandwidth and visitors monitoring instruments, parental controls, an intrusion prevention system and Asus’ AIProtection suite which gives malicious site blocking, and may stop recognized contaminated gadgets from connecting through the router. 

All of it provides as much as a well-rounded bundle for an honest worth. The AX4200 might not break any data for connection velocity, weight, or worth, however it’s the type of factor that may improve an present community to Wi-Fi 6 shortly and simply, or kind the hub of a brand new one in case you’re organising wi-fi gaming and streaming for the primary time. 

Its capability to take care of 2.5Gbps of enter offers it a level of longevity—it’s going to be a very long time earlier than home web connections attain that stage—and if you would like one thing straightforward to arrange, with the necessary Wi-Fi 6 speeds and options, then that is definitely one for the shortlist.