Question Affordable TP-Link AX1500 and AX3000 routers.

VirtualLarry

Lifer
Aug 25, 2001
48,393
5,098
126
I just saw these, on Walmart.com. Apparently, they've been out since Oct., and debuted on Walmart.com. They're pretty-much the cheapest Wifi 6 / 802.11ax routers that I've seen. The AX1500 has 1.5Gbit/sec of wifi bandwidth, and a 1.5Ghz triple-core CPU (no USB ports), Gigabit WAN and 4x LAN, for only $69.99! And the AX3000, has 3Gbit/sec of wifi bandwidth, also Gigabit WAN and 4x LAN, and that one has 4x4 MU-MIMO with an Intel chipset with a dual-core CPU. (x86/x64-compatible? Some sort of Atom derivative? I don't know!)

Looking at some YouTube reviews, there were several people that were very impressed by the range and performance of the AX3000.

The AX3000 is $129.99 at Walmart.com, and $149.99 at Amazon.com.

I'm looking for an AX / Wifi 6 router, and these look like they fit the bill. Price is right, compared to Asus and Netgear Wifi 6 routers.

A little unsure what chipsets are actually used, and if they will support 3rd-party firmware in the future. TP-Link themselves are a bit weak when it comes to continued firmware support for their networking devices. Asus is bettter there. (Just got a firmware upgrade last month for my AC68U-family routers.)

Is it worth switching from a reliable AC68U-family router to one of these TP-Link AX1500 or AX3000 routers? I don't yet have any Wifi 6 clients.
 

mxnerd

Diamond Member
Jul 6, 2007
5,440
634
126
TP-Link AX3000 (AX50)


CPU - Intel GRX350 (was Lantiq GRX350. Intel acquired Lantiq later). MIPS architecture.


Don't know if TP-Link still support 3rd party firmwares. You need to check DD-WRT & OpenWRT (LEDE) forums yourself.
 

VirtualLarry

Lifer
Aug 25, 2001
48,393
5,098
126
Hmm, once you drill-down on the reviews on Amazon, to the actual models, both of these models don't have very good reviews at all. Sounds like some severe firmware immaturity, and TP-Link isn't known for great ongoing firmware support.
 

Dirty Steve

Junior Member
Feb 29, 2020
2
1
41
Hmm, once you drill-down on the reviews on Amazon, to the actual models, both of these models don't have very good reviews at all. Sounds like some severe firmware immaturity, and TP-Link isn't known for great ongoing firmware support.
I bought a TP-Link Archer AX1500. It's working very well for me. I have cable 300/30 (down/up). Connected directly to the router with RJ45, speedtest shows full speed (just like I get when connected directly to the modem.).

I seed a lot of torrents (Linux distros). I'm uploading 40-60gig per day. Initially I was doing that via wifi. And, it was using UPnP. I had a couple instances of the router hanging up (at least the wifi, I didn't connect anything with RJ45 to see if the wired part of the router functioned). That happened in the first week. I throttled my torrents because I could see I was going to exceed my 1tb data cap. Since then, I haven't had a hang.

Also, since then, I moved the laptop seeding torrents to the router, and connected with an RJ45. I also created real port-forwarding (and disabled UPnP). I un-throttled the torrent seeding (anticipating paying for unlimited data). So far, so good. I think it was too much when I was doing it through wifi. And, 200 inbound connections might have been too much for UPnP? The CPU and memory usage shown in the admin screen looks like it's hardly working.

For $70 at Walmart... and having wireless AX capability... I'm very happy. I would definitely recommend it for the average home. I'm a bit more than average with my heavy uploading. It's working fine.

The only thing I don't like: when I go to 198.168.0.1 to administer, it redirects to TP-Link's website. I have to type that IP address again for it to go straight to the router. That bugs me. It seems intrusive.

I doubt it will ever have 3rd-party firmware. (I saw a thread on Openwrt outright saying it won't due to broadcom chipset, or something.). But, still. $70? Wow. I feel like I'm getting my money's worth.

I've considered buying the AX3000 just to play with and have as a backup. But, I don't think it will ever have 3rd-party firmware either. I think I'm going to sit tight until Ubiquity has AX unify products, and buy one of those as a serious wifi (with a edge router). I'm not very thrilled with any of the brand-name routers. They all seem to be merchandisers nowadays. Capitalizing on their legacy brand names. You mentioned these TP-Links have bad reviews on Amazon. But, from what I can tell, all the legacy brand names do too? (I didn't feel comfortable picking anything from what I saw there.). That's why I think I'll go with Ubiquiti eventually.
 
Last edited:
  • Like
Reactions: SamirD

daveybrat

Elite Member
Super Moderator
Jan 31, 2000
5,274
577
126
I too bought the AX1500 model at Walmart about 3 weeks ago. It's been working like a champ, no complaints. Much stronger than my old Asus AC1200 router.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Dirty Steve

VirtualLarry

Lifer
Aug 25, 2001
48,393
5,098
126
Really? Wow. Guess I should consider one myself. I'm running a Tenda AC18 AC1900 router running FreshTomato. I don't want to give up my Tomato firmware, but I would love to have AX wifi. I think. I don't even really use wifi. (I use a USB dongle and wired ethernet even on my laptop.)
 
  • Like
Reactions: SamirD

stxlee

Junior Member
Mar 28, 2008
2
0
66
Any updates on these models? I have an AX1500 and I find the speed pretty decent, although not markedly better than AC. The problem that I have is that AX connections get dropped occasionally. A friend is thinking about getting the AX3000 and I don't know if I can recommend.

What are people's experiences with the 3000?
 

Dirty Steve

Junior Member
Feb 29, 2020
2
1
41
Any updates on these models? I have an AX1500 and I find the speed pretty decent, although not markedly better than AC.
I don't have a computer with AX wireless. I haven't compared wireless that way. But, with my AC wireless connection, and a wired laptop doing torrent seeding (up to the full 30mbps upload speed of my plan) the AX1500 has been doing fine.

The only problems I had were the first 2-3 weeks when I had the torrent laptop connected wirelessly, and using UPnP instead of fixed port-forwarding (for the torrent seeding). That seemed too much for the router (too much demand on that much wireless volume; perhaps not efficient port forwarding for 200 open inbound connections. It would hang every 2-7 days.). But, since making that a wired connection, and using port forwarding instead of the automatic UPnP, I haven't had to reboot the router since February, when I made those changes.

For the money ($70 at Walmart), it seems great. I'd highly recommend it. It's a good way to get into (be ready for AX) without spending a lot. My plan is to replace it with Ubiquiti router and access point eventually. So, for the money, it's great as a router to hang out on for awhile.

I just noticed (your post caused me to check) that there's a new March/April 2020 firmware available. None of the bug fixes look like they'd apply to me. (I should probably install it just to be current.).

What are people's experiences with the 3000?
The person who recommended AX1500 wasn't enthusiastic about the AX3000's chipset. When I was having those hangs (the first 3 weeks), I thought about returning the 1500 and getting the 3000. But, he didn't like the 3000's chipset. (I never did understand that because the 1500 has broadcom, I believe. I haven't seen a lot of love for broadcom either.).

If you can still get the 3000 at Walmart, try it. They have a 30-day return on computer hardware, which I assume a router would be considered. (Otherwise 90-day. You could clarify when you buy.).
 

stxlee

Junior Member
Mar 28, 2008
2
0
66
Thanks for the heads up with the firmware update, I haven't checked in a few months. I'm traveling right now, but will update when I get back.

I should also qualify that we have a large family and a large connected home so there can be 30+ IPs allocated (although not always active) with some streaming. It's not fair to expect the AX1500 to cover that much ground, although our older Asus RT-AC68 did a decent job. And actually, as the drops became more frequent, I split the home into two networks, the AX1500 covering one side and the AC68 the other. Seems to be doing better, although every once in a while, I look down at my iPhone to see no wifi connection. In terms of our topology, both of the wifi routers serve as simple access points to a pfsense firewall/wired router. No other network services are being used on the wifi devices.

I guess I'll sticking with the AX1500 for now because it's a hell of deal for $70, but I'm also hoping that firmware can solve connection issues. Maybe I'll upgrade to the 6000 when prices drop and wifi 6 matures in the next year.

Just noticed that there's a AX50 which is supposedly the non-Walmart version of the AX3000 that has USB3.0 port, amongst other features. But then Amazon has it posted as AX3000 (AX50). Way to introduce market confusion TP-Link.
 

ASK THE COMMUNITY