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ASUS RT-AC1200G+ review – Better, simpler WiFi for your small business

I have something of a confession to make, I still use the router my ISP gave me as my primary access point.

While this is embarrassing I do have good reason for it but the time has come to upgrade.

So when ASUS asked us if we would like to take the RT-AC1200G+ (henceforth referred to as the 1200G+) for a spin, I was more than happy to oblige. I was interested to see whether spending R1 599 on a router would solve some of the issues I’ve been having.

ASUS RT-AC1200G+ review – Setting up

Before we begin we should note that the 1200G+ is not a modem so I wasn’t able to ditch my eggshell white modem/router. And neither will you so keep that in mind when shopping for a new router to connect your ADSL line to.

Setting up the router out of the box requires plugging in one power cable and linking your router to your modem with the included LAN cable.

Once powered on you can use the ASUSWRT graphical interface to get the router set up for use.

The 1200G+ also houses a USB 2.0 port for easy sharing of printers or files.

Now ASUS claims that installing the router using this will take you 30 seconds and three steps. Truthfully it took a bit longer than 30 seconds to get the router going but a few minutes is hardly enough to cause frustration.

What is important is the steps for setting up the router are clear and concise and shouldn’t trip anybody up.

Because ASUSWRT is web based you can set the router up from any device with a browser, it’s really nice touch rather than demanding I download a separate smartphone app to do something rather important and simple.

Perhaps my favourite feature of ASUSWRT is being able to see what devices are on your network and what websites they are browsing with the Traffic Analyser.

While it’s more than a little creepy to stalk my housemate whom I share the line with, I can see how this feature may be valuable to parents and small business who have limited internet connectivity and what to keep tabs on who is doing what.

Overall setting up the 1200G+ is easy and simple enough for anybody to do, the wealth of security options (PSK, WPA and WEP are all supported among others) is another feature we’re happy to see.

ASUS RT-AC1200G+ review – How fast is it?

The 1200G+ operates on both the 2.4GHz and 5GHz band. This is rather nice if your neighbourhood is cluttered by signals from other wifi routers.

Thankfully the router also has all the bells and whistles you would expect from a R1 599 piece of kit including 802.11ac Wifi (there is support for the a, b, g and n standards as well).

On ac Wifi you can expect to see transfer rates of around 850Mbps. ASUS’s claim is that you can get up to 867Mbps, and while our numbers are a bit off, our testing environment is not as clean as an ASUS lab. That said 850Mbps is nothing to pull your nose up at, it’s fast and you shouldn’t experience any speed problems when sharing files across two wireless devices.

As for internet speeds we’ve included our test results at various distances from the router. It should be noted that these tests were conducted on a 5Mbps wireless connection with a fibre back-bone. Tests were run in the same position three times and the average speed is reported below.

Upload Download
Same room 0.9Mbps 5.08Mbps
5m distance 0.6Mbps 5.01Mbps
10m distance 0.4Mbps 4.8Mbps

The crux of this is that the router delivers my full line speed (or near enough to make no real difference) without any hitches. The trouble I had however was coverage, and to be fair it’s a problem I have with many routers.

My house was once a horse stable that was converted into a home. The point here is that it is old and the walls are thick. While coverage is fine in my lounge, my room and the kitchen (which are all one room away from the router) my housemate who is two rooms away has intermittent signal.

This is not the router’s fault but it’s worth taking into account if you live in an older house with thicker walls.

ASUS RT-AC1200G+ review – Is it a must buy?

In my time with the 1200G+ it was stable and did it’s job without any problems.

The Wifi was fast and adding new people onto the network and being able to monitor them at the click of a button or a tap on your smartphone is a nice touch.

Even the pricing is comparable to other routers offering similar specs in the market and it looks a lot better than some of the options we found.

The 1200G+ has a number of features that would prove useful to a parent with some connected teens in the home or a small business that has employees constantly abusing the internet.

The 1200G+ then is not for a casual user like me that just needs an access point.

If you need lots of connectivity options, decent enough transfer speeds and more importantly the ability to control your network at the click of a button, the 1200G+ is worth your consideration.

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