The Linksys Velop MX10 whole-home Wi-Fi 6 system gives you more speed, coverage, and capacity than it ever has before. Wi-Fi 6 combined with Velop's Intelligent Mesh™ technology delivers true Gigabit Wi-Fi speeds, up to 5.3 Gbps, to every corner of your home, even the backyard and outdoor smart home devices. Wi-Fi 6 also sends and receives multiple streams of data simultaneously and reduces latency, providing up to 4x more capacity compared to Wi-Fi 5 technology. So, it can handle the demands of up to 50 devices and more, from laptops and gaming consoles to smart home devices and 4K TVs, all competing for the same bandwidth. You'll also always have a more efficient Wi-Fi experience with OFDMA that enables more data to and from your devices in a more streamlined manner. And, with BSS technology, congestion is also minimized eliminating interference from nearby wireless networks to deliver a strong, clear Wi-Fi signal to your home, so you won't have to worry about your neighbor's Wi-Fi interfering with yours again. You'll even have 7x more battery life with Target Wake Time that reduces network interference, allowing your devices to remain in sleep mode longer. The MX10 whole-home Wi-Fi 6 system is a part of Velop's modular system, so if you need more coverage, just add more nodes. Plus, setup is fast with the Linksys app, so you can enjoy the next evolution of Wi-Fi in minutes.
4x faster speed*
Tri-band AX5300 with 4x4 MU-MIMO and 1024-QAM, up to 5.3 Gbps.
More range than Wi-Fi 5
The Velop's Intelligent Mesh™ technology combined with Wi-Fi 6 delivers Gigabit Wi-Fi speeds to every corner of your home, including the backyard and outdoor smart home devices.
4x better performance than AC router
12-stream Wi-Fi with up to 1147 + 4135 Mbps for ultrafast wireless speeds.
4x4 Wi-Fi radios with downlink/uplink MU-MIMO allow downloads and uploads on 8 devices simultaneously (good for upload of heavy apps, such as photos, social media, live streaming or vlogging, online games, etc.).
2.2GHz quad-core processor
The AX optimized 64-bit 2.2GHz quad-core processor provides extremely fast data transfer and simultaneous data streams, which boosts wireless, wired, and WAN-to-LAN performance.
Its next-generation OFDMA technology (OFDMA) increases efficiency in high-density scenarios, delivering high-speed Wi-Fi to multiple devices at the same time.
Tri-band dynamic backhaul
Every tri-band node can broadcast on three wireless radio bands simultaneously with combined Wi-Fi speed of 5.3 Gbps.
Reduce power consumption
802.11ax Wi-Fi allows devices to negotiate when and how often they'll wake up to send or receive data, substantially improving battery life for mobile and IoT devices.
Four Gigabit Ethernet ports
10x faster than Fast Ethernet, ensuring uninterrupted high-speed connectivity for smart TVs, streaming devices, and gaming consoles to your Wi-Fi network.
Safeguard your network with wireless WPA2 encryption and an SPI firewall.
USB 3.0 port
Connect storage devices to the 3.0 port, and share across your Wi-Fi network. Can be configured to WAN or LAN.
Control from app
Manage your network 24/7 from anywhere with Parental Controls, separate guest network access, and device prioritization features.
Connect to your modem, and download the Linksys Smart Wi-Fi app.
* As compared to client devices connecting to an AC 2x2 router that does not support 160MHz.
Alexa Wi-Fi Access
With Alexa, you can easily manage Wi-Fi access for devices and individuals in the home, taking focus away from screens and back to what’s important.Say commands like“Alexa, turn off Timmy’s Wi-Fi”,when it’s time for dinner or“Alexa, enable guest Wi-Fi”when you have people over
Linksys MX10 Velop AX5300 Mesh WiFi 6 System (2-Pack)
Mesh radio networks were originally developed for, and deployed to military and subsequently public safety applications. The development of a seamless, ad-hoc, dynamic broadband network technology which forms and reforms dynamically as nodes increase or decrease in numbers and as they change proximity to the others employing short RF hops and a self-healing architecture was a very significant technological evolution. In Mesh network deployments every mobile radio is an active, intelligent node, maintaining network persistence even as those nodes are mobile, and even at high speeds. Although research and development actually began in the 1970’s, field deployments of Mesh networks began in earnest in the late 1990’s and early 2000’s. My familiarity and experience with Mesh networks is based in that time frame. Having developed a favorable impression of Mesh technology over twenty years ago, now that there is consumer grade Mesh Wi-Fi technology with a few years of product maturity and evolution for those systems, I decided that a Mesh network in my residence would be a great improvement in my home-network infrastructure.
Linksys has been a leader in Wi-Fi networking equipment for a long time, and it appeared to me that this latest product delivery was an impressive example of a matured technology coupled with the latest technical standards.
The Linksys Velop MX10600 / AX5300 Mesh Home Wi-Fi 6 system is a top-of-the-line product from a well-trusted manufacturer, and bears outstanding feature specifications including Wi-Fi 6 (802.11ax) with full backwards compatibility, tri-band (which includes two, 5.0 GHz networks which also provide the backhaul), seven internal antennae, 4X4 MU-MIMO, 2.2 GHz Quad-Core CPU, 4 – Gigabit Ethernet Ports and 1 – USB 3.0 Port, coupled with exceptional performance specifications.
Network security options include WPA3, WPA3/WPA2 Mixed mode, WPA2 and two Open options. The WPA3 standard is a requirement of Wi-Fi 6. At present, there are relatively few WPA3 compatible client devices, which most likely serves as the basis for the Velop defaulting to WPA2, unless and until changed by the network administrator. Recent information has been published regarding WPA2 / WPA3 Mixed Mode being vulnerable to Mixed Mode Downgrade to WPA2 and Dictionary Attack Transition Mode Vulnerabilities, and problems with SAE/Dragonfly (Simultaneous Authentication of Equals) handshake. These recently exposed vulnerabilities are inherent in the standard and are not deficiencies, defects or malfunctions with the devices or manufacturers. At this point in time, for most networks it is not practical to run in WPA3 only due to incompatibility with most client devices. Thus, most Wi-Fi networks, including the Velop Mesh network, should probably use WPA2 security for now.
Prior to setting up the new Velop system, I benchmarked my existing Wi-Fi which was comprised of a Cisco access point which performed competently with generally good signal propagation across the house. Nevertheless, the 200+Mbps (typically ranging from 220 – mid-230 Mbps) service from the ISP was diminished through signal loss to an average of 50 – 75 Mbps mid-house, and only around 30 Mbps at the distant side of the house. These benchmarks were obtained with a mid-230’s Mbps average speed received at the cable modem / router.
After placing the access point in bridge mode, the Velop setup was undertaken. Velop setup and administration is very easily accomplished with the Linksys phone app. (Post initial setup, the users Linksys web portal can be used for some management tasks, but the app must be used for setup). Initial communication with the Velop nodes is via Bluetooth connectivity, until the first node, the Parent Node is configured and the phone joins the new network. Mesh networks should employ a single SSID for the mixed band network, allowing the intelligent nodes to arbitrate which device should run on which band, and on which physical node, at a given time, based on RSSI (Received Signal Strength) levels.
With only the Parent Node active, I benchmarked the network speed again. The mid-house speed was averaging 225 – 232 Mbps, and the distant location from the node averaged 130 – 145 Mbps. This single node performance was extremely impressive, particularly realizing approximately twice the network speed at range than with the Cisco routing.
Once the Parent Node is configured, the Child Node configuration is undertaken with the same flawless operation and ease as the Parent Node. Child Node configuration also verifies that the range between nodes is acceptable to maintain reliable, broadband inter-node communication, which is essential to Mesh network operation and performance.
With both nodes configured through the phone app, assign the client devices to the Velop SSID (user defined) and all setup and configuration are complete. Very little time or effort is required for the entire process.
Post setup, I performed another round of benchmarking for speed and RSSI. Wi-Fi speed throughout the house was now averaging the same approximate 230 Mbps ISP rate throughout the entire structure. That is the maximum level of performance which any local network can deliver.
Client devices automatically initially camp on the node presenting the strongest RSSI when the client joins the network. Fixed location clients will generally remain on that same node indefinitely. However, mobile clients will move between the nodes depending on RSSI and hand-off criteria logic in the Velop firmware. Resultantly, a mobile client will be expected to camp on the most proximate node, which is presumably going to be the strongest signal source. However, a hand-off between nodes will not occur until the client’s RSSI drops below the -70 dBm handoff threshold. Therefore, if you are monitoring the RSSI on the client device, and/or utilizing the Linksys app to determine which node each client is currently camped on, you may observe that a client which is only inches from one node, is actually working off the more distant node. If you absolutely, positively can’t stand to wait for the Velop to manage the inter-node handoff, you can force the client onto the closer node by simply switching the client Wi-Fi off for a moment and then back on, whereupon it will re-join the network on the node with the best signal strength (the closest node). Similarly, if one node if powered off, all clients will camp on the sole working node (even if it is distant), and distant clients will likely be degraded to the 2.4 GHz network in order to maintain connectivity and throughput. In that event of losing an active node for any interval, it may be necessary to re-join each client to the Mesh network by either switching the client’s Wi-Fi off and back on, or even power-cycling the device, in order to have all clients associated with their optimal node.
This phenomenon is not a system or equipment malfunction; it is a function of the design criteria. Once the RSSI to the mobile client device falls to -70 dBm, it will be handed off by the Velop to the other Mesh node, which is more proximate to the client device (and of course is presenting a much stronger RSSI). In fact, I am seeing signal levels of around -36 to -40 dBm at mid-house, with link speeds (TX and RX) of around 780 – 866 Mbps and full ISP bandwidth delivering 230+ Mbps speed, which represents absolutely incredible signal levels and incredible performance.
The Velop AX5300 is an outstanding performer. Anecdotally, all client devices exhibit great network performance. More significantly, the empirical data is most impressive and persuasive. The Velop essentially delivers the same data rate which is received at the modem, throughout the Wi-Fi network coverage area.
I strongly endorse and recommend the Velop AX5300 / MX10600. I am very favorably impressed with the system performance, ease of setup and decent administration capabilities. Linksys remains a trusted and reliable developer and manufacturer, and to the best of my knowledge and in my experience, provides good product support.
I would recommend this to a friend
App, Range, Set up
Rated 5 out of 5 stars
The Best Mesh Wi-Fi Network System Gets Better
The Linksys Velop AX5300 (also known as the Linksys MX10 Velop for a 2-node system and MX5 or MX5300 for a single-node) is a multi-node mesh Wi-Fi networking system. These types of Wi-Fi networking systems have been growing over the past few years, and Linksys wants to be the company to lead the way. As a user who reviewed the previous tri-node Velop system (WHW0303) and gave it a mediocre review at launch 2 years ago, I’d like to briefly revisit that system 2 years later and how the new Wi-Fi 6-enabled MX10 Velop builds upon that.
==PREVIOUS GEN VELOP==
At launch, the now 2-year-old Velop had good signal, but the process for setup was poor. There was even a limitation of requiring an iOS or Android device to setup. Other Best Buy Tech Insider Network reviewers encountered the same issues I did, and a friend of mine who is also a TIN reviewer agreed with my sentiments pertaining to the previous Velop. However, Linksys came through in the end. I have been using only the Velop for 2 years now, and I can say that it’s been reliable, stable, and easy to use. They’ve even developed a web-client for more advanced management of your Velop system—so those who are familiar with other Linksys Smart Wi-Fi routers will be familiar with this web-client. So when I got the opportunity to review the newly improved MX Velop system, I was excited to try it out.
==THE NEW VELOP==
The new MX10 Velop at launch has been far more simple to use in comparison to the previous generation at launch. This time around, smartphone app worked without any unexpected hitches. I’ve set up many Wi-Fi networks in my time, and the setup process for the MX10 Velop helps complete newbies have an easy setup process, but allow more advanced users to make changes after the setup is complete. Following the instructions on your smartphone (or tablet) using the Linksys app led me to set up both nodes and have a working connection in about 30 minutes. The only hitch I encountered was having to restart the master Velop (the node connected to your Modem) one more time after power-cycling my modem per the instructions in the app. After the first node, the second node was a breeze to set up, and it even updated the firmware on both nodes afterward.
In my case, I was replacing my older 3-node Velop system with this 2-node Velop system. During setup, I used the same Wi-Fi name, and all of my Wi-Fi enabled devices reconnected to the new MX10 Velop. So in 30 minutes, I was able to swap out my older Velop System with my newer one—pretty impressive, if you ask me. I’ve spent far more time setting up routers with repeaters and configuring them. For me, the MX10 Velop is probably the least painful Wi-Fi setup experience I’ve had yet.
COMPATIBILITY WITH PREVIOUS GEN:
For this review, I’m assessing the MX10 Velop independently of the previous generation Velop, but it should be noted that if you use a previous generation Velop product, they are compatible with this new MX10 Velop! That’s a major win in my book. This means that while only the MX10 Velop supports the newer Wi-Fi 6 (aka 802.11ax) and WPA3 security protocols, the MX10 is backwards compatible with previous generation Wi-Fi devices and will automatically work with the older Velop nodes to enable WPA2/WPA3 Mixed Personal security alongside compatibility with Wi-Fi 6 / Wi-Fi 5 (802.11ac) and older. So as more smartphones, tablets, computers, televisions and other IoT (Internet of Things) devices adopt Wi-Fi 6, you’ll be happy to know that you can get the most out of those with the MX10 while continuing to use your older Velop system, should you have one.
So why would you get the MX10 Velop over other mesh networks or upgrade from the older Velop system? Or why would you go Wi-Fi 6 over Wi-Fi 5?
To start, it should be pointed out that like any other technology, adopting a newer standard early-on is an expensive transition for the first couple years. Companies have to recoup the costs of research and development, so it’s expected that you’ll have to pay more for cutting-edge technology.
Here are some of the highlight points that Linksys likes to point out pertaining to the MX10 Velop:
* Supports 802.11ax AX5300 up to 5.3 Gbps
* Four times better performance than an AC router
* 4x4 Spatial Streams
* Next-generation Orthogonal Frequency-Division Multiple Access (OFDMA) technology
* Reduced power consumption
* 2.2 GHz quad-core processor
* Coverage of up to 3,000 ft2 per node
* 4 Gigabit LAN ports, 1 Gigabit internet port
* 1 USB 3.0 port for external storage support
* 7 internal antennas
- Tri-Band Dynamic Backhaul
- Intelligent Mesh
- MU-MIMO technology
- Wi-Fi security
- Seamless Roaming
- Guest network
- Basic Parental Controls
- Speed Check
Note: Items noted with an asterisk * are improvements exclusive to the new Velop and not available on previous generation Velop Systems.
Without getting into all the technical details of each of these specifications, we can sum up what this new MX10 Velop system does better than its predecessor:
For the devices that utilize Wi-Fi 6 on the MX10, they will be able to hop between your nodes more seamlessly as you move around your home, and ensure that you are always connected to the node with the best balance of signal strength and speed. Additionally, those devices will experience higher transfer rates of up to 5.3 Gbps—and with 4x more capacity than Wi-Fi 5, the MX10 can provide enough bandwidth for as many as 50 devices. The MX10 also has an additional antenna over its predecessor for a total of 7 antennas, and I might guess that those antennas have improvements for signal strength—especially given the larger size of the MX10.
One other major improvement is the addition of 4 Gigabit LAN ports that you usually find on more traditional routers. This is fantastic for those who want to maximize performance for certain devices via a wired connection; whereas on the previous Velop, you only had up to 2 LAN ports if your node was wirelessly slaving off another node. If you’re like me and you have ethernet running through several rooms in your house, you could set up nodes in a wired fashion to achieve the maximum theoretical speeds on each node, rather than slaving wirelessly. But even when slaving wirelessly, the performance is great with minimal hits to performance and latency.
Lastly, the addition of a USB 3.0 port allows your MX10 Velop to easily create an SMB share over the network for any attached USB storage that is formatted to NTFS or FAT32 for Windows, and APFS (read-only), HFS+ or FAT32 for macOS. You can create an SMB share for each MX10 you have (since each node has a USB 3.0 port), and you can even require authentication with a username and password to access the network storage. This is an awesome feature that just works, plain and simple.
In terms of real-world performance, how has the MX10 been working out for me? My theoretical speed tests should deliver around ↓330Mbps & ↑12Mbps. Running speed tests on both wired & wireless (using Wi-Fi 6 & Wi-Fi 5 devices) connections deliver extremely close to that number, with ping of ~10ms. Signal performance around the house has been great for my Wi-Fi 6 devices, and even my Wi-Fi 5 devices are still performing well, despite having only 2 nodes in comparison to my previous 3-node setup.
I will probably add one of my older nodes to further improve coverage of my 2-story + basement home just because I can. But overall, I really have no qualms with this new Linksys Velop System. It does everything that the previous system did—and does it not only more reliably & faster, but it just does more.
If you’re looking at the reviews for this mesh network system, then perhaps the price hasn’t completely deterred you like it may for some. The MX10 is a fantastic mesh network system for those who have larger homes with a ton of area to cover who want a seamless, unified methodology for expanding their Wi-Fi coverage at home. Their 3-year limited warranty and tech support is also complemented by the online Linksys Community forums where firmware updates, issues and solutions are discussed by other consumers, should you ever encounter a problem. While I’ve not encountered issues with the MX10, I have used the Linksys Community forums for diagnosing other Linksys products and have always ended up with a great outcome in the end. From my experience, Linksys stands by their products with software updates that not only improve stability, but also add useful features.
Whether you just want to be on the bleeding edge or want the most reliable mesh networking system out there with useful features and ease-of-use for both newbies and tech experts, the Velop is a great system, and the MX10 is a strong improvement on its predecessor.
I would recommend this to a friend
Range, Set up, Signal quality
Dropping, For phones
Rated 4 out of 5 stars
Great Performance, needs tools
First I think the right router is very important in a stable home networking setup. I'm a big believer in mesh networks (eventually) being able to provide a smarter network. Two years ago I tried replacing my Netgear Nighthawk router with the Velop tri-node system then I moved to a quad node. I have a 2 story home a with little less than 3000sq ft. I have Cox's Gigablast (coax) service 1GB/down and 30+mb/up. With the Nighthawk I would get 850mb down and 35mb/up and over Wi-Fi 5G I could would hit 180mb/down on my iPhone close to the router, and about 120 at a distance of 50'. My house has between 65-75 connected devices, about 30 are connected to Ethernet, the rest use Wi-Fi. I have a smart house almost all lighting is connected via smart bulbs (50+) or smart switches (z-wave)
When I first started with the Velop system, it was very new, I spend quite a bit of time with Linksys tech support getting everything to work. And initially it works very well if I was close to the primary node. But as it got connected to all of my network devices I had stability and speed problems. When it work is was very nice but I had a lot more occasional internet drops with it than I had with my Nighthawk alone. There were times when all went well but as the network load (streaming music/video) increased the drops were no longer acceptable. I added a Linksys AC2200 and a AC5400 as a upstairs/downstairs bridge as a separate Wi-Fi network with the Nighthawk and had the performance and stability I was looking for. I found the AC5400 was 20-50% faster then an Velop Tri-Band AC2200, so it was moth balled.
Now on to the RX10, once I learned about the new Wi-Fi 6 becoming available I again started to think about upgrading. Linksys claims their RX10 (two RX5's) can cover a 6000sq/ft house. So I once began looked to re-configure my network (simplified if I could). I first disconnected my existing network routers/access points and installed a single RX5 and evaluated it's performance; I could get 950-975mb down and 40mb/up - GREAT. With my phone close to the node and got between 300-400mb down, from 50' away I was still getting 200-250mb down. The best I'd ever seen, and I tested from the same position over and over. So I got out the second RX node and started experimenting, placing it close the the primary down stairs, then further and further away. I got the best performance keeping the secondary and primary fairly close together (separated by a room and a stairway). I let all of my devices get added to the network, and this time I could not immediately see any degradation in performance as all my network devices connected (the new RX nodes processing and Wi-Fi strength was substantially better then their smaller AC2200 nodes were).
But Linksys said the new RX units could be used with the older Velop routers (nodes). I quickly found that the Linksys AC2200 and a AC5400 routers could only be configured in the Velop system as the primary node (not that surprising) but that ment I would not be using them. One by one I added a the smaller nodes to pair with their bigger brothers. I added three nodes at the far corners of my home, and did some testing (with their software you can tell what node is connecting to what node and I got some surprises. I found that any time that the nodes were three deep performance was significantly worse they when there was one or two hop deep (but there was no way to keep them from meshing as they desired). By moving nodes around and retesting I found that the best configuration did not need all of the smaller Velop nodes. In the end I found using one additional node got me the best balance. The new RX nodes are certainly MORE powerful then their little brothers. I seriously considered using just the 2 RX nodes, but I found having the TV furthest away from the rest of the network, connected via Ethernet to the small Velop node performed better than it working over Wi-Fi in the same position. This got me thinking about getting my downstairs RX node connected to my Ethernet; and boy did this change things for the better. So connecting the furthest nodes via Ethernet changed the way the nodes worked. This combination is providing me with 200-300mb/down almost anywhere in my house. I could not be happier, now if it provides stability I'm sold. I've now had everything running for about a week and it all looks awesome.
I'm now I'm VERY familiar with adding removing Velop nodes, one issue is adding (even after removing) takes about 10 minutes; I did use their BT setup tools, which worked quite well for me (albeit slow); I know how to do the same via the router directly, but think most people will use the tools from their app. The channel finder tool, under advanced Wi-Fi setting is quite useful for system tuning, I wish it provided a means to forcing nodes to only communicate via a specified connection.
I do have some suggestions for Linksys [summary: provide more info] (-1 star for lack of information regarding what is happening on the network). They should
1. provide a means of seeing how much data is being processed by every device (and especially Velop nodes Up/Down) so balancing can be done/understood.
2. provide a map showing who is communicating with whom (Wi-Fi/Ethernet) better explain to users how Ethernet is a big benefit.
3. provide a tool to look at in/out signal levels of devices connected to each node (this really only used for troubleshooting but in setting up system, it would be very helpful)
I would recommend this to a friend
App, Range, Set up
Rated 5 out of 5 stars
The WiFi Router of The Future
The typical household is increasing in its WiFi usage every year. More devices are going cord-free, higher quality streaming audio and 4K HDR videos create for higher bandwidth demand, and the increase in Smart Home devices only continue to add on to the WiFi usage in a house. To fight this new demand, the next step in WiFi is "WiFi 6" which is exactly what the LinkSys Velop MX10 Whole Home WiFi System will bring to your home!
WHAT IS WIFI 6??
- To simply this, WiFi 6 is just the next generation of WiFi. Every system gets an upgrade like this from time to time but WiFi 6 is definitely important. It's main perks are that is it faster, stronger, and covers larger areas. These factors mean that it can handle a much larger number of devices at a time while still providing strong WiFi to each individual device. So no more "hey get off the WiFi, you are hogging all of it and I need WiFi". Another big perk is that WiFi 6 delivers the signal more efficiently which allows for devices to not have to work as hard to get the signal which effectively improves battery life on all your devices, that’s a big deal!
WHY THIS DEVICE IS GREAT:
- Most mesh systems operate by having one main unit and the other units are essentially WiFi extenders that aren't as strong as the main unit. That being said, it's important to note that this two pack is two main units! One of them plugs into the modem while the other is placed in another location in the house but since they are both main units, they combine to create a constant powerful signal throughout the house.
- The Set Up of the two routers were very easy to use. LinkSys provides an app you can download and it’s a very easy step by step to set everything up. After setup you can continue to use this app for management of the routers and anything you may need to monitor or change. Very well done!
- As far as performance goes, these are unmatched to anything I have ever used. I stream live TV, stream 4K HDR movies and TV shows, use mobile devices frequently, and have numerous smart home devices on this network. I noticed an increase in responsiveness and had no more areas in the house that I thought were too slow.
- Most importantly, I made sure to actively use as many streaming devices and mobile devices at once and overall I did not notice that typical "too many people are on the WiFi" feeling that usually plagues households. This is a huge win for LinkSys and a must have feature going forward.
- The only downside of this device has nothing to do with the device itself but rather the technology. WiFi 6 right now is essentially what 4K HDR was on TVs a few years ago. WiFi 6 will work best with devices that support WiFi 6 and there are not a ton of devices that do yet. You will still see benefits on your non-Wifi 6 devices, but to truly get the perks you need all your connected devices to be up to date as well. So that being said, purchasing this Mesh Router system is really a future proofing move as eventually all devices will support WiFi 6 but not quite yet.
- If you want a top of the line mesh router system that will cover your entire house & yard plus future proof you when more devices become compatible, then you should buy this system no question. The mesh system handles all of your household devices at the same time which is very important for how smart homes are advancing. This is definitely a "Early-Adapter" type of technology but it will be well worth the purchase now and over time.
I would recommend this to a friend
App, Range, Set up
Rated 5 out of 5 stars
Unbeatable Speed; Easy Setup; Huge coverage area
Linksys - Velop AX5300 Tri-Band Mesh WiFi System 2-Pack
Nothing else matters when it comes to Wi-Fi routers other than maximizing network access speed. At least for me, it’s about the speed. Well, maybe I’d also applaud really ease setup. It’s got to be as easy as this Velop. And, I shouldn’t forget huge coverage area. My home is bigger than its 2800 sq ft, because we have a large back deck. Also, it needs to accommodate the dozens of devices I own now and expect to upgrade in the future. It’s amazing how many devices want to talk to home base, other devices, my phones, my cameras. There’s lot’s of traffic to manage. So many devices. So, I take it all back. Everything matters to me.
FEATURES: Everything you’d expect is here: 2.4 GHz, 5.0 GHz radios; 1 WAN Port, a USB port for shared storage drives, as well as 4 LAN ports, 8 antennas, accommodating 50 devices ….. for EACH node. As you can see, Linksys has addressed some shortcomings of their first Velop system by significantly adding to the connectivity. WiFi 6 is mostly about the future, with WiFi 6 phones and laptops hitting the market as I write this review, although the WiFi 6 MESH network already appears superior to anything I’ve had in my house.
Some will see the Velop modems as “modern” attractive. Each node is white with size and weight about the same as a quart of milk. I expect my wife to make Velop cozies to camouflage them before too long. Connections are along one back corner and manage to conceal any wiring fairly well.
SETUP: Linksys has honed setup for their Velop systems in a way that meets the needs of any user I can imagine. I’m pretty demanding. Linksys created branching menus in the App (iOS version on my XR) that appear to anticipate various setups. The App is flexible.
Download the App, plug in the primary router to a modern/router, power up, and start watching the LED on top as your first “parent” node matches the desired color for each stage in the setup. The App advises how long you must wait for each step. The next “child” node follows the same process (assuming you have this 2-node package). Setting up an account (or using an existing Linksys account) is quick. My first setup created a new network. Easy. Just for a test, I also tried setting the Velop system in bridge mode. (Attached nodes also become part of the bridged network. Nothing to do on the “child” router.) Easy. Zero hiccups. It just works. I even tested ethernet wiring to each node, and the setup could accommodate that (admittedly odd) configuration.
PERFORMANCE: In my setup I placed the Velop second node approximately 40 ft away from the primary node, with 3 intervening walls. I had No problem establishing the wireless link between nodes. With my network established, I ran my first SpeedTest. Download 184Mb; Upload 436 (using iPhone XR; only very recent phones can exploit WiFi 6). These speeds far exceed anything my WiFi has ever achieved. And, I was testing using the 2nd, distant node, with 40ft of wireless backhauling to my Internet access. Access to my most distant location was not in any way limited. Multiple testing over a week showed NO loss of connectivity and NO hiccups in performance. Fast. Very Fast. And very reliable.
SUMMARY: Speed may not be all that matters to me, but everything about this router contributes to my sense that it is king of the hill. It starts with phenomenal connection speed. It’s the router solution I’ve been waiting for. Of course, until newer devices can fully exploit WiFi 6 we probably haven’t seen the ultimate speeds that this new Velop can achieve. But, already, this new Velop AX5300 Mesh WiFi provides Unbeatable Speed, Unmatched Ease and a Huge coverage area.
I would recommend this to a friend
App, Range, Set up
Rated 5 out of 5 stars
This one is a no-brainer. If your home, no matter the size, has areas where your wifi doesn't reach, or frequently drops, or is just inconsistent buy this. The price is up there I know, but this linksys mesh system will take care of all of your wifi needs for the foreseeable future.
In the box you get your main unit which plugs into your modem, it also sports ethernet ports for wired connections, and your secondary unit which you will be placing at the other end of your home. Setup is a breeze, just download the app for iphone or android, follow the instructions and that's it. I was prompted to update my firmware during setup and I did so without any hiccups.
I have gigabit internet, with real world speeds ranging anywhere from 930-970mbps wired and the 300mbps range on wireless, on my previous mesh network I had very inconsistent speeds and the occasional dropped signal, that is not the case with this one. In the worst wifi spot in my home I'd be getting around 317mbps download. With this linksys model I'm getting more than twice that. Upload speeds with my provider aren't great and the difference there falls within the margin of error ... but those download speeds. I'm very happy now. I have multiple video game consoles, smart tvs, and a bunch of other random smart things on the far side of my house, some of which don't have the strongest wifi radios. I never lose connection now it's great.
And that's the other thing that I guess I should mention. Not only is the coverage exactly what you want - I.e. covering your whole home and then some at crazy high speeds - but this is a WiFi6 device, which was built to specifically manage the large number of connected devices people have in the home. Just in my living room and master bedroom I counted more than 20 smart devices including; pcs, phones, tablets, tvs, consoles, smart plugs, smart lights, blu ray players, and a thermostat. I have around 40 devices total, but some come and go ... phones being what they are, and new ones coming in all the time whenever guests want to connect to our WiFi and I've never had a problem with any of them dropping or having slow speeds. It just doesn't happen with the Velop system.
I also have to mention the app. I've used apps to try to manage my network hardware in the past and they've all been pretty remedial. That is not the case here. You can do basically anything you want from the app. At work and suddenly remember that you wanted to set up a different DNS than the one your provider assigns by default (a thing that actually happened to me) well no problem! Just get on the app and change it and boom you're good to go. Finally a good mobile solution to network management!
Yeah I can't sing the praises of this enough. We don't usually think about networking equipment unless something is going wrong, but I can't stop talking to people about this. The linksys velop system has solved basically all of the problems I've had with other routers on the market. It's replacing another pricey mesh network system in my home, but it outperforms my old setup by such a huge margin ... it's frankly embarrassing. If you want your full speed, or as much as is possible depending on your DL speed, over wifi, want to connect a ton of devices without fear of random disconnects, want true whole home coverage, or great remote management of your network, BUY THIS. It is awesome.
I would recommend this to a friend
4 out of 5
5 out of 5
Ease of Use
5 out of 5
For phones, Price
Rated 5 out of 5 stars
Finally! A router setup that does what it promises
Owned for 2 weeks when reviewed.
Here's the home situation: Two pre-teens, two adults working and playing from home. I have loads of IOT devices (cameras, garage door openers, Google Home things) plus a couple game systems, kids' iPads and iPhones, and of course video streaming devices. My old router was a decent Nighthawk but it couldn't handle this much traffic at my newer cable speeds.
After trying a four-node Nest WiFi and two of the latest Netgear Nighthawk routers (RAX200 and RAX120) and an AX8 extender with no success in my home of about 2,700 square feet and only two levels, I wanted to give the new Velop system a shot. COVID-19 home office demand apparently wiped out supplies of ASUS WiFi 6 routers, which seemed to be the most highly recommended. The Velops were available and had brand-new tech, so I thought I'd try.
In short, the Velop nodes live up to their promise. I see about 430 Mbps from the cable modem to the router. I'm consistently getting 400+ throughout most of the house now and probably 200 outside. The Nest WiFi units were slick and not bad on the same floor level, but no WiFi 6, so my speeds away from the router and downstairs were not what they could be with the new iPhones.
With those high-end Nighthawks, I got 430 in the same room as the router, but it significantly dropped downstairs (less than 150) and was virtually nonexistent in one corner of my house. Not the performance I expected for that price. And the software for the phone was mediocre -- painfully slow to find the router every time I opened the app and with the RAX200, the WPS light stayed on, leaving the network open to attack, and there still was no firmware to fix it by the time I returned them.
Linksys was my first router way back in 2001. It feels a little nostalgic having them again. This one does not disappoint, plus I think it's much more attractive than the cheesy batwing and spider designs. I did not get an opportunity to try out the Asus with AI mesh, but I cannot imagine any better than what I have now.
These were expensive - yes - but my home office and my wife's business must be functional while the kids are still doing online lessons and their online social lives. Right now, I'm very pleased with these. Great software, super easy to set up and a very polished appearance and very solid build quality - it's of a quality of Apple or Google products.
I think the new Velop is a winner. Note: I have not tried with just a single node, but I imagine for most folks' use, it would be a solid router, too. But I LOVE my mesh setup.
4 out of 5
5 out of 5
Ease of Use
5 out of 5
I would recommend this to a friend
App, Set up, Signal quality
Rated 5 out of 5 stars
Another excellent release of the Velop evolution!
I've been using Velop since the start, and I've been growing up with them and the equipment. And I'll say, that it has been a mostly uneventful and wonderful ride. The Velop system is amazing. It is an easy setup, using the app, it walks you through through the process easily and without any unnecessary fussing around.
It is simple enough to setup, that even someone without much or even any IT experience should be able to follow the step by step of the app process. I started over with this upgrade to this model and went through the setup process as if I never used this before and it is still as easy as it was the first time I used these as they launched the product.
There is much you can do with this if you want to, but you can also do almost nothing and get online easily and securely with the defaults in place. I will remind you that you have to change the admin password, the app does not remind you to do this during the setup and that is not good. You will want to change that admin password before you consider your setup complete. NOTE: You can program the router from your web browser, go to tech support site for instructions. Opens up more options by doing this, including turning on logging.
The biggest change I've seen coming from the last generation is that I can get full internet speed on my computer and phone, whereas before the speeds, while great, were not the full speed that was available.
The second biggest change is in regards to coverage. I've got a 1500 sq. foot townhouse and it is going outside well beyond the back porch and out into the road in front of our house. I like this because I take calls in the car if they are important so if the big dogs bark when they see strangers, I am not bothering people on the conference call. Same with taking the laptop to the car for these conference calls, all are seamless as if I'm in the house.
The last big change from the previous generation is the size of the units themselves. They grew up in a big way. But I don't care, I like the benefits of the larger units. They run cooler, have more ports, and also allow you to connect a USB drive for network storage, a huge hit in my book! Now we can all backup our Macs to the network drive as we did when I was using the Apple routers.
I'm using approximately 20-40 devices at any given time and this thing is pushing all that data through a 100mbps connection without any issues at all. I've played with prioritization, and that is a neat way to prevent a data hog from stealing all the data. My one adult child might be watching something on Netflix, while using Skype to do a conference call with friends, as they game on the Xbox. That's a lot of data and no slowdown has been noticed by anyone. At the same time my adult daughter may be streaming a show, working online doing her masters degree homework, and FaceTiming someone from her friend group. I may be surfing the net, and the wife may be streaming a show via on demand. This thing is a workhorse and handles all the traffic quite well.
Velop is no joke. It is super simple if you want it to be, or can be more complex and you can get into rules and such, if you choose to do so. Some routers offer more detailed level programming options and some deep based reporting. Frankly, I don't need that and just need the signal to be good and for it to work all of the time. It does this quite well.
I notice that the devices will shift from one unit to the other, automatically, based on which is providing a stronger signal to the device. I've also never noticed the switch even when on WIFI calling with our cell phones, which we all do as well. Nobody has. So that is truly seamless. Even my work computer with the VPN that notices any break in signal hasn't ever seen a break in service going from one node to the other. Seamless is real with Velop.
One thing I've really seen an improvement is with the throughput of my Arlo cameras. I have a unit in my powder room, that Arlo is plugged into, and the ability to get live views and camera status has improved significantly. I've also noticed it pushes the video to the cloud much faster. And my ring doorbell connects faster than ever. Getting clips from the cloud when home on WIFI is much faster now too.
I've also noticed much longer battery life because when the phones are sitting idle, the router shows that the signal from the device is like one bar (looking at it from the app) but that is because the devices know to lower the amount of power to keep the signal and get stronger as you move further away - since I'm blasting so much signal through, they never need to up the ante on power.
The app is very user friendly, even after the install process. Shows you if you are connected to the internet or not, how many devices, and a menu appears for all the other stuff you may want to do with it.
If you are on the fence, try this. It works. I am someone who needs their WIFI working or else everyone gets upset and the drama starts. I also like to have things just work without the craziness of having to fix stuff all the time. Velop has always just worked, with zero failures. It just works. If you need to reboot it because of a problem, there is a reset switch under the units. Easy.
This is the most consumer friendly router I've used, and I've reviewed many over the years. You'll enjoy it and if not, take advantage of the generous Best Buy return policy.
A:AnswerI run gigabit service, I have the newest iPhone which supports WiFi 6. WiFi is 600-740 which is great! Wired speed 880-900. However if your device is not AX compatible you will see an increase but not much. But it will handle all of your devices much more efficiently.
A:AnswerPlease do know that routers are independent of cable companies and their function is to transmit internet through WiFi from your cable company to all your devices . You can use this with any cable company that provides internet service. Like I use At&T fiber so I simply connect velop with At&T cable modem and disable WiFi on At&T modem and use Velop as my primary transmitter . In a nutshell This modem is compatible with all internet service providers.
A:AnswerWe're using the AX5300 in our home which is 2600 square feet and the two nodes provide near perfect Wi-Fi throughout the home. I would definitely recommend having at least two nodes, especially having one upstairs and one downstairs for maximum coverage. That said, at the moment both of our nodes are downstairs and we're having no issues at all.
A:AnswerHi, Mhig. Our Linksys devices are compatible with major ISPs. Also, this device is compatible with the following Network Standards: 802.11a, 802.11b, 802.11g, WiFi 4 (802.11n), WiFi 5 (802.11ac), WiFi 6 (802.11ax).