Published on April 10th, 2015 | by Remy Cuesta1
Netgear Nighthawk X6 Tri-Band Gigabit Wireless Router review
Everyone knows that you can have great internet speeds but without the right router or just having a very weak one would be like driving a Ferrari with a Toyota Corolla engine. The Netgear Nighthawk R7000 is arguably one of the best routers available and Netgear set to outperform it with the Nighthawk R8000 X6 Tri-Band Gigabit router but does it deliver?
The Netgear R8000 Nighthawk X6 sports four Gigabit LAN ports out and one WAN in to connect the modem, USB 2.0 port for standard connections and printers, a USB 3.0 port for faster connections and optimized for external storage input. It has six external antennas that can fold down onto itself, adjusting the antennas can help give you a better range output depending on how it’s angled when hooked up. The overall design is very sleek, possibly my favorite looking router to date and does look like something that could essentially be in the air like an aircraft. The LED lights in the front indicate everything that’s on or active in white, red meaning it is inactive or currently unavailable.
The router features a Tri-Band Gigabit antenna system which delivers 2.4ghz (600mbps), a 5ghz (1300mbps)and a secondary 5ghz (1300mbps) signal equaling 3200mbps collectively. With these options it allows you to connect many wifi connections at once to be hooked up to the network. We’ve had up to 11 connections at once and depending on your actual download speeds can see almost no significant loss. Our basic testing even indicated the faster speeds coming from our Nighthawk X6 router over the modems 5ghz connection itself. This was tested three times at three different times of day and all equaled out nearly the same.
Setup for your wired and wireless connection is painless giving nearly automatic setup on the WPS connection. The router comes with a default password for the network if you don’t feel like going in and changing it. The actual settings interface which can be found by logging into the routers menu through a computer has tons of settings and features. A cool feature the R8000 has is the Smart Connect feature which enables the router to allocate what needs a better connection dynamically. If your xbox is streaming something versus your phone just being on will know which should be in the 2.4ghz and 5ghz bands.
We’ve only come across two real issues with this router compared to some others in this field and one is range. By all means we haven’t experienced the range issues that others might have but compared to some others within the 5ghz category it just wasn’t as stellar as we’d had hoped. A router like this should have a better range for sure. The other is its price, from the moment of this review you can get the router as low as $270 but is essentially a $300 router, compared to their R7000 some would argue its necessity at this price point.
We also had a small run in with port forwarding and the router but was brought to our intention that if any other wireless signal is in current use before it reaches the Nighthawk like a router enabled modem from the cable company etc. That should be forwarded through DMZ to the R8000 thus fixing the issue when trying to add port forwarding in the future on the Newtgear router. This was especially helpful when connecting to servers like Plex or forwarding to and Xbox 360 or One.
The Netgear Nighthawk X6 possesses a ton of features with the most cutting edge tech and an extra 5ghz band delivering a combined 3200mbps. Connections ran smoothly and little setup to none was needed to get things at pretty much optimal settings. However for the price its hard to say where we lie but if you’re on the fence think of it as an investment on features that might come via firmware. We’ve already received some stability via firmware and can possibly only get better from here. There is no denying aside its previous model it is one if not the most powerful home router to date.