Smart Home Series: Linksys WRT 1900ACS Gigabit Wi-Fi Router

Smart Home Series: Linksys WRT 1900ACS Gigabit Wi-Fi Router

Bottom Line

The Linksys WRT 1900ACS GIgabit Wi-Fi Router provides top-of-the-line performance at less than eye-watering prices with enough features to keep most customers happy for years to come.

Any good smart home requires a powerful router to push data to perhaps dozens of devices. Most routers provided by your Internet Service Provider (ISP) are bottom-of-the-line models designed to give you the basic connection you need to keep you from complaining.

In order to begin smart home upgrades at my own house, I purchased this router from Amazon hoping to get at least twice as much 'juice' out of it than the CenturyLink modem/router combination installed when we moved in. What this router provided far exceeded my expectations, and I hope you consider using this model in your own smart home.

Unboxing

One pet peeve of mine is products that require detailed instructions to get working. I believe that I should have to do to get my router to work is plug it in and connect to it. That is exactly the experience the 1900ACS provides.

Everything is laid out nicely and obviously inside the box. The only part that needs assembly are four antennas that need to be screwed on and, get this, you can't mess it up. They are child-safe from overturning!

Linksys 1900ACS router unboxing
Installation

After glancing at the simple steps pictured on the DVD included with the router, I unplugged my old router and hooked the new on up in it's place. Immediately, I start seeing lights on the front of the router. 10 seconds later, I see that the Internet is up and running. Without a second thought, I was up and running. Great!

From there, all I had to do was connect my computer to it, open up a web browser and type in a simple URL provided to configure the router.

The user interface is better than many other competitors out there. If you remember our article covering wireless network security, you will know that it is important to set unique passwords for both your network and the router or modem itself: Linksys actually guides you through this process and is one of the few vendors who seem to take a default interest in security.

Linksys 1900ACS router setup
Performance

Expecting to double my Internet speed, I anxiously visited Speedtest to get a baseline measurement of what my WiFi was pushing out both before and after installing the 1900ACS. Here are my baseline stats using the CenturyLink provided modem/router combination:

CenturyLink internet speed
2.80MB is equal to downloading at 350Kb/s

Not the worst results, but 2.80Mbps is only equal to a download speed of 350Kbps. At this speed, a 700MB movie file would take approximately half an hour to download.

After installing the Linksys 1900ACS router, I ran the test again under the exact same conditions, and these were my results:

Linksys Internet Speed
20.71Mbps is equal to a downloading at 2580KBps

That's right, installing the Linksys 1900ACS improved my download speed from 2.8Mbps to 20.71Mbps instantly! That's more than SEVEN times faster! Instead of downloading that 700MB movie file in half an hour, the estimated time is now cut down to just under five minutes!

Final Thoughts

One fun aspect of this router is that it actually creates four networks for you: your 2.4 and 5GHz networks and a guest version for each of those. That means that you can give your "guest" password to visitors and let them use your network without compromising your personal information. You can also monitor how many devices are currently connected to your network from the Linksys dashboard page pictured earlier. It is a really great tool for keeping safe in the digital age.

But who really cares about that? Being able to download at 7 times the speed is reward enough for finding the right product!

You can visit the product page right here.

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