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TP-Link Deco X90 Test: Mesh system compatible with wifi 6 above

TP-Link Deco X90 Test: Mesh system compatible with wifi 6 above

The blocks go almost unnoticed. © Digital

The TP-Link X90 Mesh system is currently the best among Chinese manufacturers. It consisted of two strictly identical blocks; TP-Link does not have a router or satellite.
Therefore, the first module is connected directly to your operator box or your router and the second module is connected between the first module and the part to be covered.

In terms of specifications, the TP-Link X90 Kit offers almost the best: 6.6 Gb / s in three bands and 2.5 Gb / s per module in the Wi-Fi 6E.
In detail, 1.2 Gb / s is allocated for communication between 5 GHz band modules, while the second 5 GHz band offers 4.8 Gb / s performance thanks to the 160 MHz band. Finally, the 2.4 GHz band with speeds of 574 Mb / s ensures compatibility with connected objects and older devices.

Indicates the position of a small lead block.  © Digital

Indicates the position of a small lead block. © Digital

Each module has two RJ45 sockets. The first is in the gigabit standard and the second is in the 2.5 gigabit standard. WAN is not called a socket (reserved for router connection) or LAN. So you can combine one of the two with your operator box. However, if you have a fiber subscription of more than 1GB / w, it is advisable to connect the module to your operator box via a 2.5G socket if you have one in your box; We are especially thinking about free offers and freebox delta.

A gigabit plug and a 2.5G plug, that's all.  © Digital

A gigabit plug and a 2.5G plug, that’s all. © Digital

Aesthetically, the TP-Link module is a successful, white shell with a matte finish and a glossy top. Seen from a distance, this V-shape looks like a flowerpot or vase. It is approximately 21 cm long and slightly raised on the other side. In terms of width, the bottom of the block measures 11.5 cm and the top 13 cm. Weight 720 g and allows it to be placed on a shelf.

The installation of the package is very easy. First, you need to install the Deco app on your smartphone. The application guides you step by step during the installation. You first need to attach only one module, which is attached to the box. You specify the identifiers of your new network in the application, which can eventually only add your second volume.

A clear installation, step by step detailed.  © Digital

A clear installation, step by step detailed. © Digital

Once your two modules are configured, you will receive the single Wi-Fi name (SSID) you specified during installation. So the 5 GHz and 2.4 GHz bands are packaged under the same SSID. Your devices will automatically select the tape that provides the best performance. Keep in mind that we do not have any problems connecting our attached items, even the most attractive ones.

The application allows you to manage all the parameters of your deco kit. With options such as port forwarding, MAC address cloning, and DHCP server settings, the possibilities are almost at the advanced router level.

The interface is complete.  © Digital

The interface is complete. © Digital

Even newbies can easily deactivate a band, create and update a guest network நிலைபொருள் Modules or project access.
On the other hand, users of Internet management interfaces may be disappointed by the limitations and simplicity of TP-Link.

The web configuration interface is particularly bad.  © Digital

The web configuration interface is particularly bad. © Digital

When it comes to security, TP-Link provides a HomeShield tab. The basic version is free and provides network analysis and QoS (bandwidth priority) touch for devices and users. This makes it possible to create users, connect devices with them, receive monthly usage statistics and even announcements when a new device is connected.
On the other hand, actual parental control (along with a list of sites visited) is charged in the Pro version of HomeShield; The subscription is € 5.99 per month or 54.99 per year. The first 30 days are free if you want to test before you decide.

The most effective functions of parental control are charged.  © Digital

The most effective functions of parental control are charged. © Digital

To evaluate the performance of the Deco X90 Kit from TP-Link, we have attached a module near our operator box in which we connect a laptop with a 2.5 Gb / s socket via adapter. To measure flow rates, we converted the 4.73GB file (disk image) from the first laptop PC to the second PC equipped with the Intel AX200 WiFi 6 chip, but also to the standard desktop PC on the floor. For a gigabyte GC-WBAX200 PCIe card, with an Intel AX200 chip, but with an external antenna.

The first block is located in one corner of the house, the second block is almost in the middle of the latter. We measure at 1 m, which gives us the optimal flow rates (point 1 for block n ° 1 and point 2 for block n ° 2), with the other wall facing the block 5 m away from block n ° 2. n ° 1 (point 4), the third measurement on a fixed system upstairs through a concrete floor (point 3), and the last measurement on the second floor, but beyond the first chamber where the speed of the router is lower (point 5).

© Digital

On Wi-Fi 6 in the 5 GHz band, the TP-Link Deco X90 delivers an average speed of 1.3 Gb / s while receiving our 4.73 GB file. So this transfer takes 28 seconds or an average speed of 166 MB / s. Impressive! With iPerf we were able to reach an average speed of 1.6 Gb / s in over a minute! The speed of sending a single file is about the same amount (1 Gb / s).
The measurement of the second module is not very interesting, and for good reason, the modules relate to the theoretical speed of 1200 Mb / s in the 5 GHz band. In practice, it delivers an excellent 539 Mb / s, which averages 67 Mb / s on reception and 465 Mb / s (58 Mb / s) on transmission.
Note that our standard PC WiFi card – most logically – wants to connect to the module n ° 1
At the remote point n ° 5, the Deco X90 offers a comfortable speed of 384 Mb / s on reception and 284 Mb / s on transmission. Enough to easily view 4K content from your favorite site.

© Digital

Out of curiosity, we tested the speed of the Deco X90 this time around by configuring our WiFi cards on WiFi 5 (802.11ac).
The flow rates from volume n ° 1 then decrease by approximately 10%, while the flow rates recorded in volume n ° 2 increase at the same rate.
However, if you are primarily equipped with Wi-Fi 5 devices, you will benefit from the excellent speeds offered by the Deco X90, which can flip with gigabit speeds.

© Digital

The performances of the 2.4 GHz band are less popular and prove that this band is mainly relevant. So the maximum speed is close to 300 Mb / s and should stabilize around 200 Mb / s. The smaller the plate at our point n ° 5, the lower the speed of the repeater we reach the Deco X90 limits in this band.

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