Technology content trusted in North America and globally since 1999
8,590 Reviews & Articles | 67,037 News Posts

TPLink Archer A6 Wireless Router Review

TPLink Archer A6 Wireless Router Review

TPLink intros the Archer A6; the best budget router?

By Tyler Bernath on Jun 24, 2019 10:00 am CDT - 5 mins, 51 secs reading time
Rating: 79%Manufacturer: TP-Link
TPLink Archer A6 Wireless Router Review 99 | TweakTown.com

With TPLinks renewed interest in offering the best bang for your buck with its new Archer lineup, the A6 takes center stage as a compromise between the entry-level A5 coming in at $39.99 and mid-range A7 at $64.99.

On the hardware side, the A6 takes advantage of the Qualcomm QCA9563 the same SoC used in the more expensive A7. That trend continues through with both the A6 and 7 sharing the same amount of memory at 128M and NAND at 16M. Radios for the A6 include the BGN solution integrated into the SoC which also handles ethernet switching while a secondary QCA9886 handles 2x2 802.11ac duties.

MSRP of the TP-Link Archer A6 comes in at $49.99 with a two-year warranty.

TPLink Archer A6 Wireless Router Review 02 | TweakTown.com

Packaging follows the enhanced colorway of the new Archer lineup. Image of the router offset to the right with marketing to the left.

TPLink Archer A6 Wireless Router Review 03 | TweakTown.com

The spine offers specifications and features.

TPLink Archer A6 Wireless Router Review 04 | TweakTown.com

Included in the box we have the router, power adapter, and ethernet cable.

TPLink Archer A6 Wireless Router Review 05 | TweakTown.com

The exterior of the A6 is a piano black finish, very high gloss. Centered is a panel with power, Wi-Fi, and internet connectivity LEDs.

TPLink Archer A6 Wireless Router Review 06 | TweakTown.com

The backside offers power, reset and WPS to the left side while the single WAN and four LAN are to the right.

TPLink Archer A6 Wireless Router Review 08 | TweakTown.com

Setup starts with setting up SSID and passwords.

TPLink Archer A6 Wireless Router Review 09 | TweakTown.com

We then move into the dashboard, which for the most part, is identical to the Archer A20.

TPLink Archer A6 Wireless Router Review 10 | TweakTown.com

Wireless settings include the ability to disable each band separately and the ability to change SSID or password.

TPLink Archer A6 Wireless Router Review 11 | TweakTown.com

The A6 has a separate parental control interface as well as QoS, whereas HomeCare supported unit have both integrated into one menu.

TPLink Archer A6 Wireless Router Review 13 | TweakTown.com

The QoS menu is much different, allowing only basic setup that includes up and downstream bandwidth.

TPLink Archer A6 Wireless Router Review 16 | TweakTown.com

As for testing, we used our standard process with the test system below. Starting with LAN throughput, we see the A6 coming in at 946Mbps.

TPLink Archer A6 Wireless Router Review 17 | TweakTown.com

The Archer A6 comes in the middle of the pack with wireless throughput with 89Mbps on the 2.4GHz band and 534Mbps on 5GHz. That said it does beat out early 802.11ac solutions including the Nighthawk X4 and Linksys 9500.

TPLink Archer A6 Wireless Router Review 18 | TweakTown.com

Mobile throughput had the Archer A6 reaching 464Mbps.

TPLink Archer A6 Wireless Router Review 19 | TweakTown.com

Comparing a range of the Archer A6 to A20 and the AX88U from ASUS, we see solid starting performance at 81Mbps moving to 67Mbp sat 10ft and ending at 63Mbps at 30ft.

TPLink Archer A6 Wireless Router Review 20 | TweakTown.com

5GHz showed solid performance from the A6, starting at 464Mbps at5Ft and 173Mbps at 20ft. At 30Ft we see performance end at 82Mbps just a touch better than the Deco M4 single node setup.

With the Archer A6, TPLink strikes first offering a great performer at an amazingly low price. Build quality isn't the greatest but does its job in protecting the internal components while offering a bit of aesthetic appeal. As mentioned the plastics are glossy black so expect dust to be abundant along with fingerprints if you have a lot of those running around.

As for performance, the Archer A6 does its best and really does quite well for such a low-cost solution. In 2.4GHz we saw decent throughput out to 20ft and 5GHz between 15 and 20Ft. Peak numbers were 465mbps in mobile testing with our iPhone and 534Mbps with our desktop test system.

In closing, the Archer A6 is a solid solution for a dorm, loft, or small apartment less than 1000 sq ft. If you need something with more power you may want to consider the Archer A20, recently reviewed.

Tyler's Test System Specifications

Performance79%

Quality73%

Features77%

Value85%

Overall Rating79%

The Bottom Line

The Archer A6 is a admirable solution and aperfect entry-level upgrade for those moving from legacy 802.11bgn solutions.

79%

TP-Link AC1200 Smart Wi-Fi Router

TodayYesterday7 days ago30 days ago
Buy at Amazon
$49.99$49.99$44.99
* Prices last scanned on 2/25/2020 at 8:45 am CST - prices may not be accurate, click links above for the latest price.
Tyler Bernath

ABOUT THE AUTHOR - Tyler Bernath

Growing up in a small farm town in northern Ohio, technology was never around unless it was in a tractor. At the early age of nine years old, my parents brought home our very first PC and I was instantly hooked and quickly learned what it meant to format a hard drive, spending many nights reinstalling Windows 95 as my parents slept. As I grew up, many things changed around me, but my love and enthusiast nature always kept my PC at my side. Eager to get deeper into technology, I started reviewing products.

We openly invite the companies who provide us with review samples / who are mentioned or discussed to express their opinion. If any company representative wishes to respond, we will publish the response here. Please contact us if you wish to respond.

Related Tags