ASUS RT-AX56U Review - The best entry-level Wi-Fi 6 router for 2020

ASUS RT-AX56U Review – The best entry-level Wi-Fi 6 router for 2020

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ASUS RT-AX56U

$149.99
9.2

Build Quality

9.0/10

Hardware Specification

9.0/10

Features

10.0/10

User Experience

9.0/10

Value

9.0/10

Advantages

  • Refreshed design
  • Good hardware specifications
  • Good features
  • Greater wireless coverage
  • Dual-USB port
  • Able to handle more clients
  • Powerful processor for its price range
  • Router didn't get hot/warm

Disadvantages

  • Non-detachable antennas

ASUS RT-AX56U Review Introduction

ASUS RT-AX56U is the newest Wi-Fi 6 router from ASUS. Being an entry-level router, the AX56U powered by a 1.5GHz quad-core Broadcom BCM6755 processor with a total memory capacity up to 512 MiB. This AX1800 class wireless router offers data-rate up to 574Mbps over 2.4GHz and 1201Mbps via 5GHz subsequently, thanks to its NitroQAM (1024-QAM) technology that boosts the data delivery rate up to 25%. According to ASUS further, the AX56U was designed to fit large homes and featuring ASUS’s AiMesh feature that further helps expanding the wireless coverage by revoking your old ASUS router (in condition the router supports this feature) to be paired together.

ASUS RT-AX56U standard accessories

Out of the box, the AX56U offers a unit of AX56U itself, a RJ5 ethernet cable, an adapter with three types AC power cord (swappable), a user manual guide and a warranty card.

ASUS RT-AX56U Review - Design Overview.

The AX56U rather appears in a modern, refreshed design from ASUS. I personally prefer this enclosure design over the older casing enclosure design. It appears more premium compared to previously used enclosure for their older Wi-Fi 5 routers. There are a few noticeable ventilation holes present at the side of the enclosure to allow a better heat dissipation from the component of the router.

ASUS RT-AX56 Review - I/O Modules offered

Looking at the offered ports located at the rear of the router, you will get a Gigabit WAN port, four-Gigabit capable LAN ports, a USB 3.0 port and a USB 2.0 port along with a reset port and WPS button. In addition a power switch and DC in port also present at the side of the WAN port.

More ASUS RT-AX56U Images: View Here

Specifications

ASUS AX56U features a decent hardware components. According to the manufacturer’s site, the specification is as follows:

Wireless Class AX1800
Processor Broadcom BCM6755 1.5GHz quad-core
Memory Flash Memory
256MiBRAM
512MiB
Wi-Fi Technology OFDMA
Beamforming: standard & universal
1024-QAM high data-rate
20/40/80MHz bandwidth
VPN Support IPSec server
PPTP server
OpenVPN server
PPTP client
L2TP client
OpenVPN client
Data-Rate 802.11n: 300Mbps
802.11ac: 867Mbps
802.11ax(2.4GHz): up to 574Mbps
802.11ax(5GHz): up to 1201Mbps
Highlighted Features AiProtection
AiMesh
Dual-WAN
MU-MIMO
Smart Connect
Download Master
Coverage Large Homes

For a better breakthrough the hardware components used in the AX56U, you can refer it over here.

User Experiences

Setting up ASUS RT-AX56U for first use

Powering the router up for first use is pretty straight-forward. With the right credentials, the process only consumes less than 5 minutes. In addition, the router can be setup both via standard method (website) or via the smartphone app, ASUS Router that available for both iOS and Android platforms.

ASUS RT-AX56U user dashboard with features i.e. AiMesh, AiProtection and etc.

Next, moving in the list of the features offered by AX56U, it appears to be similar to other Wi-Fi 5 routers from ASUS that only differs with a few new features bundled together such as OFDMA, MU-MIMO and Wi-Fi 6 mode (also known as 802.11ax mode) that can be fully utilized by picking a right Wi-Fi 6 client such as ASUS PCE-AX58BT. A few selection of wireless mode given to pick the right option to utilize it and I would be recommending to leave as auto (for novices) or N/AC/AX mixed (recommended) only. If you’re a power user and already have your own Wi-Fi 6-enabled client, then leave it as AX only.

ASUS's AiProtection as a standard feature in ASUS RT-AX56U

One of the feature I would like to highlight here is despite being an entry-level ASUS’s Wi-Fi 6 router, ASUS decided to standardize their AiProtection feature as standard for their Wi-Fi 6 routers. This means, in the future, if you purchase any Wi-Fi 6 router from ASUS, you will receive AiProtection as standard and it is free for lifetime unlike its competitor that only offers a specific period of time before a payment issued in order to use the service.

ASUS RT-AX56U Dual WAN support

I can’t imagine myself not having an internet for the whole day (if it happens) since I am an internet addict. With Dual WAN support, I can prepare an another internet backup in case if something happens.

ASUS RT-AX56U IPv6 test by TechCyn

Moving into the next part, the AX56U also features IPv6 feature as standard. This is one good move made by ASUS to allow their user to take full control over their networking gear. Based on my testing using the site, the IPv6 working perfectly. No issues here.

ASUS RT-AX56U Alexa and IFTTT support

Do you own a smart-devices in your home? Or you are planning to turn your home entirely to a smart-home? Well, the AX56U also supports Amazon’s Alexa and IFTTT. This will allow you fully have control via voice command to control all your smart-devices, thanks to this feature.

ASUS RT-AX56U Wireless scheduler by TechCyn

I am also keen to test the wireless scheduler feature. It turns out to be one of the recommended feature by me to actually fully utilize the emission of both bands only within the time that has been set by me. From the settings also, you can now utilize fully the modulation scheme to get the best speed when wireless connected (if you have a Wi-Fi 6-enabled clients, then you can experience the faster data transmission rate compared to Wi-Fi 5 clients), similar when you’re physically connected to your router.

ASUS RT-AX56U QoS and Traffic Monitor by TechCyn

Utilizing the bandwidth depends over the total numbers of clients connected to the router right? The AX56U offers a few selections of QoS to fit the usage scenarios, further. You also can manually pick the modes given to fit your most-used scenarios or the bandwidth speed can manually configure. On the other hand, one of the best feature I would like to highlight here is the Statistics of the Client’s data. This is one of the good feature that allows network administer (the individual held responsible for maintaining the router at consumer house, in other words, you) to run troubleshoot if any issues found in the home network itself. For power users, if the AX56U supports Asus-Merlin in the future, you may try to get familiar with FreshJR Adaptive QoS that can be installed in the router.

ASUS RT-AX56U Wireless Speedtest feat ASUS PCE-AX58BT

Now, I would like to share my experience in using the combination of both AX56U and AX58BT itself, a Wi-Fi 6 router with a Wi-Fi 6-certified client. I am using 800Mbps (down) and 200Mbps (up) fibre package by unifi, our fibre provider. Now, with the right tool, I can fully utilize the bandwidth regardless in any backhaul I intent to use.

Wireless Card Intel AC1200 (2×2) Intel AX200 (2×2)
Wireless Client ASUS G752VT PCE-AX58BT
Adapter Link-Rate: 2.4GHz 300Mbps 300Mbps
Adapter Link-Rate: 5GHz 867Mbps 1.2Gbps
Maximum Data Transmission Rate for 2.4GHz 113.94Mbps (down) & 132.73Mbps (up) 279.01Mbps (down) & 204.5Mbps (up)
Maximum Data Transmission Rate for 5GHz 488.11Mbps (down) & 203.49Mbps (up) 810.64Mbps (down) & 207.51Mbps (up)

I elaborate further the differences in terms of using a normal Wi-Fi 5 client against Wi-Fi 6 clients. There is significant improvement in terms of maximum bandwidth utilization for a single device with a proper wireless card in it.¬†Although both of the cards are in the 2×2 MIMO class, however, the speed varies due to the technology used in both classes. Clearly, I able to achieve a better speed compared to my ageing laptop.

ASUS RT-AX56U's smartphone mobile app, ASUS Router

Not everyone of us can always log-in to the web dashboard of the router to configure or update the existing settings right? Now, with ASUS’s official app, now it is made possible. Just to make sure it recommended to disable remote connection permission if you’re not intending to access the router remotely. Other than that, this app really allows you to walkthrough every feature available for this model.

ASUS RT-AX56U supports OpenVPN, PPTP and L2TP as standard

Being a full time tech-geek, I use the internet for almost 12 hours a day. While browsing on the internet, I want to mask my traffic and my entire home network traffic with a dedicated VPN connection. The advantages of the AX56U are, it supports OpenVPN, PPTP and L2TP protocol as standard.

Conclusion

ASUS RT-AX56U Review - Conclusion of using ASUS RT-AX56U

Being an entry-level Wi-Fi 6 router from ASUS, the AX56U performs well in my test. Everything about the router is good. From its decent quad-core processor to its great wireless coverage. Wi-Fi 6 is slowly entering the Malaysian market and being one of them is the AX56U. Thanks to its Broadcom processor, there is a high chance that the model will be supported by Asus-Merlin in the future. Although there are a few bugs present in the preloaded firmware, ASUS’s engineer committed by patching out the bugs and release new firmware that, improves way better than before. I also realize that, unlike other ASUS routers out there, the AX56U doesn’t overheat much most probably due to its built-in heatsink and perfectly fitted ventilation holes that allows a better heat dissipation to take place. Pricing at RM689, the AX56U is one of the best entry-level 2020 wireless routers. The router is now available at most major IT retail stores now.

ASUS RT-AX56U won the best 2020 as the best entry-level Wi-Fi 6 router

Hereby, I am awarding the ASUS RT-AX56U as one of the best entry-level Wi-Fi 6 router for the year 2020.

Heed: You can use my affiliate link to purchase the router. By doing so, I will earn a small commission that will be helpful for me for further contributing to the development of the blog. 

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