TP-Link Archer C5400X Router Review
Ryan Bloom / Oct 19th, 2018 No Comments
What do you look for when you choose a router? The options are seemingly endless and it can be extremely difficult to tell how one is different from another. That is why router companies have begun to target specific audiences. The latest trend is in gaming.
That is where the TP-Link Archer C5400X router comes in. TP-Link already has a line of formidable routers, but the Archer C5400X was designed specifically for gaming. The powerful device is packed with features and comes with impressive hardware so it can handle everything you can throw it.
The Archer C5400X is the Lamborghini of routers. The design is far from understated. Its rectangular black base is surrounded by eight antennae that make it look like a well-protected space fortress. Antennae feature RangeBoost technology, which helps provide strong reception to devices that are further from the router. Like an expensive sports car, the C5400X is meant to be seen, but it also houses some serious goods under the hood (or trunk or wherever the engine is kept on luxury sports car).
Standing out even more than the antennae is the 1.8GHz 64-bit quad-core CPU and three co-processors. Not only does the processing power result in good loading speeds, but it also helps manage traffic on the network and eliminate latency.
For gamers, this is important. It means the C5400X can easily handle pretty much any internet speed available from ISPs and will reduce internet congestion so that gameplay runs smoothly. I tested the router extensively by playing rounds of Fortnite, Blackout in Black Ops 4 and online MyPlayer modes in NBA 2K19, and I experienced almost no latency issues and only one instance of lag that occurred when connected wirelessly.
The decreased latency is probably the C5400X’s most impressive feature, and certainly the one that makes this router appeal to gamers. The lightning-quick response rate may actually make you better at games. But don’t feel bad if it doesn’t (it didn’t help me) because you’ll still benefit from smooth gameplay and the ability to handle 4K streaming with relative ease.
Traffic can be spread over three wifi bands, one 802.11b/g/n 2.4GHz and two 802.11 ac/n/a 5GHz. When enabled, the device’s Smart Connect feature can automatically detect the optimal wifi band for each device on the network and connect the device to that band. Along with 1 GB of RAM and MU-MIMO and Airtime Fairness features, the hardware and features in the C5400X all work together like a well-trained orchestra to maximize your internet connection.
Additionally, the C5400X has eight Gigabit LAN ports, one Gigabit WAN port and two USB 3.0 ports. The router also is equipped with Bluetooth, which is used for its simple setup through the TP-Link Tether app. With the app, it only takes a few seconds to get the device up and running, and you’re also able to manage QOS and other settings with a few taps and swipes.
It’s always interesting to see a device marked as a “gaming” router because it’s hard to tell what distinguishes a gaming router from any other router. With the Archer C5400X, you can see that this device was built for gaming. The processing power and extensive features were incorporated to decrease latency and manage traffic, and it succeeds in doing so.
The TP-Link Archer C5400X gaming router is one of the most impressive routers on the market when it comes to hardware and features. It can handle all the devices you can throw at it and the highest internet speeds. Setup is simple and the C5400X also has support for Alexa and strong security features. It carries a steep $400 price tag and its look isn’t the best, but the performance more than makes up for it.
A router was temporarily provided to Gaming Illustrated by TP-Link in order to conduct this review.
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