Netgear Nighthawk R7000 AC1900: Verdict

Gordon Kelly

By Gordon Kelly

Reviewed:

Awards

  • Recommended by TR
Netgear Nighthawk R7000 AC1900

Summary

Our Score:

9

Should I buy the Netgear R7000 Nighthawk?

With both style and superb performance the obvious answer is yes, but nevertheless it is conditional.

At £189.99 we’d give it the edge over the identically priced Asus RT-AC68U as it delivers faster speeds in eight out of our eleven speed measurements. That said, the two it does lose are significant: speed at 15m behind two solid walls at both 802.11ac and 802.11n 2.4GHz. For those focused on range the AC-68U could be the better bet.

Things get even closer with the Linksys EA6900 where the R7000 comes out on top six to five in the speed tests. Still the EA6900 has the edge at range with 802.11ac and 802.11n 2.4GHz speeds and where the R7000 does prevail the scores are close. More to the point the AC1900 models are so fast and relatively evenly matched so other factors come into play and this, for us, is where the EA6900 still holds the crown.

Key are the simpler setup of the EA6900 and its optional Cloud platform for remote access. Linksys has also priced the EA6900 at £169.99 and – given the R7000’s lengthy delay launching in the UK – it can now be found for under £140 in many online stores.

Countering this is the R7000’s outstanding USB performance, which batters both its rivals and if you connect USB storage to your router then this is a deal maker. We still give the EA6900 the edge for its more rounded package, but the battle for top spot could barely be closer.

Netgear Nighthawk 2

Verdict

The Netgear R7000 Nighthawk has the fastest peak throughput of any router we’ve ever tested and its USB performance blows even its AC1900 rivals away. However its key rivals, the Linksys EA6900 and Asus RT-AC68U, have the R7000’s number at range in two out of three tests. Overall, we’d have Linksys edge Netgear into second place.

Next, read more about 802.11ac vs 802.11n

Overall Score

9

Scores In Detail

  • Build Quality 9
  • Design 9
  • Features 8
  • Performance 9
  • Usability 8
  • Value 8

toboev

April 2, 2014, 5:16 pm

These things are always portrayed with their aerials striking some kind of a funky pose geared towards maximum visual impact. But what's the word on how they should be arranged for maximum functionality?

My understanding was that they should be simply straight up an parallel. But does it maybe depend on the orientation of the aerial of the other party, which could (for handheld devices) be any way up or sideways?

Gordon Kelly

April 2, 2014, 5:58 pm

I've heard that but aside from sticking them out horizontally (detrimental!) I've found very little difference (certainly within a margin of error) whether they are straight up or at a slight angle.

Kat

February 19, 2015, 5:33 pm

I've been reading reviews and on every review forum I find, it appears that this is a known issue that NetGear refuses to deal with and fix. I've been an IT System Administrator for over 20 years and I would not buy another Netgear product again after dealing with their support which doesn't admit there is a known problem.

I had the Netgear WNDR3400 and never had any trouble with it. I bought the Nighthawk R7000 and for $200 and my experience with other Netgear hardware I thought this unit would be great. The configuration lets you lock down your wireless and looked like an excellent product for the money.

I have had nothing but trouble with it. The Nighthawk r7000 is constantly going down. I upgrade firmware and it craps out and I have to redo the configuration. I get up in the morning and no wireless, I have to reboot it. Sometimes it goes down 2-3 times a day. The other day I got up and again no wireless, I rebooted and that didn't fix it. I go into the configuration and it says the wireless is turned off. First time I had this issue and you have to hold the wireless button on the front for about 10 seconds to turn it back on.
This is ridicules that this unit has so many issues. Of course it's now out of the 90
warranty and Netgear says as long as the correct lights are on it not a
hardware issue so pay us to troubleshoot or fix it yourself. When the device is a lemon, you can't fix that!

NOW THAT I’M WRITING THESE REVIEWS, I FIND THAT USERS HAVE THE SAME ISSUES I’M HAVING. THEY HAVE ALSO CONTACTED NETGEAR TO NO AVAIL.
BOTTOM LINE, BUY ANOTHER PRODUCT.

Tim Degrey

March 5, 2015, 6:56 pm

This happened to me out of box. I was irritated and frustrated, especially with a router that has such high praise worldwide.

Looks like the issue is with some bugs in the latest firmware. I decided to downgrade the firmware a few revisions, and now my connection is really solid. I get full 300mbps down from Time Warner on my wireless devices. Sometimes speedtests need a warmup to get there, but after that, it is really solid.

If you are having buyer's remorse, I recommend trying the firmware downgrade. It might be a specific one that works best with your modem.

Kat

March 6, 2015, 5:48 pm

Netgear contacted me and we did troubleshooting. They sent me a new router and I updated the firmware as soon as I got it out of the box, which they also recommend. I've had it so far a week with no trouble. They have also just released a newer firmware (Wednesday) which I'm about to upgrade to as well.
When they troubleshoot that is the 1st thing they want to know, is if your firmware is up to date. The entire reason for these updates is to patch problems so I wasn't going to downgrade anyway.

Gary Goslin

December 17, 2015, 2:41 am

Range you got all wrong. IMO, it's top notch. Maybe the best yet. Not a huge Netgear guy but so far, the 2nd one I've owned, WNDR3400 and now this one and they have worked fine. Nothing I can't fix on my own.

Anyone familiar with computer components know that sometimes things don't work like they should. Like power cords on Dell laptops, that's another story.

Daniel Morgan

April 19, 2016, 12:29 am

We have an unusual house with steel siding and a patio in the middle. So getting a signal from the router in the living room to the master bedroom meant penetrating two steel clad insulated walls. Neither of our two previous routers could do it. The Nighthawk R7000 even send the 5G signal to the bedroom. We can get a signal anywhere in our 2900 square-foot house and almost anywhere on our .4-acre lot

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