Review: Linksys EA7500
With multiple devices connecting to your home internet and used for high-bandwidth applications such as 4K video streaming, the need for a powerful Wi-Fi router is greater than ever. This is where the Linksys EA7500 (Rs,9,999) becomes relevant. In comparison with Linksys’ own WRT1900ACS, the EA7500 has a much more restrained design. The matt black chassis has generous vents for air circulation. There are three external antennas. The front has the Linksys logo that illuminates, but no other notification lights for internet connectivity, Wi-Fi, etc.—this can be a problem if your internet connection becomes inconsistent at some point, and you need to check whether connectivity has been restored.
This is a dual-band router, with maximum speeds of 1,900 Mbps—1,300 Mbps on 5 GHz band and 600 Mbps on 2.4 GHz band. It runs a 1.4 GHz dual core processor. The EA7500 faces competition from the Netgear R7000-100INS Nighthawk (around Rs10,200; Amazon.in), which offers dual band, 1,900 Mbps speeds and a 1 GHz processor. What is creditable is that the EA7500 offers the same wireless range indoors, even in the farthest corners, as the Linksys WRT1900ACS (around Rs18,999; Amazon.in), with four antennas, and the Netgear Nighthawk X6 (around Rs14,999; Amazon.in), with six antennas.
To set up the router, you will need to download the Linksys Smart Wi-Fi app (free for Android and iOS). Gone are the days when you had to connect a PC to the router via a LAN port for the set-up. During this process, a critical firmware update for the EA7500 was also downloaded.
On the 5 GHz band, the Linksys EA7500 clocks 83 Mbps internet speed (on a 100 Mbps connection) at a distance of 5m from the router, with one brick wall in the way. Move away, with two brick walls between you and the router, and the clocked speed of 47 Mbps is quite solid too. At greater distances, that is where the 2.5 GHz band struggles a bit and speeds come down to around 22 Mbps—this happens also because this band is more susceptible to interferences from other gadgets.
The Linksys EA7500 offers stable wireless performance, great range and an uncomplicated management app. If you have a broadband connection faster than 20 Mbps, this is a great router to invest in—it works well in larger houses as well.