TP-Link Archer GX90 Review (Page 4 of 5)

Page 4 - Performance Tests

For the tests, the TP-Link Archer GX90 wireless router was placed on the main floor of my colleague Aaron Lai's house. His media PC with a Gigabyte UD Pro 256GB SSD was connected to the router via a CAT5e cable on a Gigabit Ethernet connection. On the client side, a 2018 13" HP Envy 13 with an Intel Wi-Fi 6 AX200 network adapter card installed running Totusoft's LAN Speed Test application was used to transfer 500MB test files to evaluate real-world throughput. In our results, "upload" is defined as data transfer from the client to the server via the wireless router; conversely, "download" is defined as data transfer from the server to the client via the wireless router.

Since wireless channels are generally characterized by path loss, large scale fading, and small-scale fading, the router was tested in six different locations described above to comprehensively measure its true throughput performance. This includes a combination of line of sight and non-light of sight spots, different distance and positions relative to the router, as well as shadowing caused by objects between the laptop and the router. In order to overcome inconsistencies due to small scale fading, a relatively large 500MB test file was used. Furthermore, movement of people and objects within the vicinity of the devices during testing was eliminated whenever possible.

A brief description of the test locations is as follows:

- Location 1: Line of sight to router, approximately 2m distance
- Location 2: Non-line of sight to router, bedroom, one floor up
- Location 3: Non-line of sight to router, bedroom, one floor up, end of house
- Location 4: Non-line of sight to router, bedroom, one floor down
- Location 5: Non-line of sight to router, patio balcony, same level
- Location 6: Non-line of sight to router, attached garage, one floor down

Compared Hardware:
- TP-Link Archer GX90 (AX6600)
- EnGenius ESR580 (Single) (AC2200)
- EnGenius ESR580 (Double) (AC2200)
- D-Link DIR-X5460 (AX5400)
- TP-Link Archer AX6000 (AX6000)

Location 1 is usually where routers demonstrate the maximum upload and download speed. This is part of the test design, as this is the only location with direct line-of-sight, not to mention a very close proximity. In this case, the TP-Link Archer GX90 was the fastest among the compared routers in both upload and download by a comfortable margin. Results from Locations 2 and 4, which are almost just above or below the router, respectively, showed the antenna array strength when the laptop is above or below even if it did not have direct line-of-sight. It seems the Archer GX90's antenna array strength was a bit better when you are directly below than above it, where it continued to be the fastest tested router here at APH Networks in Location 4 with download speeds even slightly exceeding the line-of-sight Location 1. However, the GX90 fell behind -- at least in the download part -- in Location 2.

Location 5 is outdoors and separated by a sliding glass door, but is generally still close to the router. Despite the horizontal distance, its speeds were close to that of Location 3. Speaking of which, Locations 3 and 6 are trickier regions, as they are the furthest away from the router and not directly above or below. Location 3 showed excellent upload and download speeds; once again close to Location 1 and unmatched by other routers on the list. Location 6 was the furthest distance from the router while being one floor below. Both upload and download slowed by a good margin compared to its peak, but the TP-Link Archer GX90 continued to dominate the charts with the download and upload speed a whopping 59% and 87% faster, respectively, than the second fastest D-Link DIR-X5460.

Overall, the TP-Link Archer GX90 delivered dominating wireless throughput from short to long range. Its peak download numbers of 817.02Mbps, while never dipping below 531.59Mbps at any location, was simply amazing. Except for one test, which we repeated multiple times to confirm the results, no other router on our list -- including the company's own Archer AX6000 -- was able to come anywhere even close to Archer GX90's wireless throughput. The TP-Link Archer GX90 is simply fast.

Page Index
1. Introduction, Packaging, Specifications
2. Physical Look - Hardware
3. Configuration and User Interface
4. Performance Tests
5. Conclusion