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    NETGEAR Nighthawk AX3000 AX4 WiFi 6 Router Review

    NETGEAR Nighthawk AX3000 AX4 WiFi 6 Router Review

    Are you tired of a slow wireless network with limited bandwidth, and are looking for an affordable wireless router that supports the WiFi 6 standards? Then look no further. NETGEAR Nighthawk AX3000 X4 is one of the pioneer wireless routers currently in the market that support the latest WiFi 6 standards specifications that one should take into consideration.

    The Netgear Nighthawk® AX4 AX3000 WiFi router introduces one to an enhanced Gigabit Wi-Fi connectivity experience that allows you to connect, stream, and faster downloads on all your devices.

    With abilities to reach a maximum WiFi connection speed of 3000 Megabits using 160MHz bandwidth. This allows for fast 4K streaming, improved gaming experience, and video conferencing quality.

     

    Product Features

    1.Design.

    In terms of design, the Netgear Nighthawk AX3000 X4 comes in a matte black color, with a sleek stylish design with two antennas. The router weighs 600 grams and measures 340 x 206 x 57 mm.

    On the top side, the wireless router has LED indicator lights in the middle of the case aligned in a vertical design, with the ON/OFF LED indicator at the top and other status indicator LEDs following.

    Below the LEDs, there are several buttons one can use to turn on/off the WiFi and one for WPS pairing activation. On the rear side, the NETGEAR® Nighthawk® AX4 4-Stream AX3000 WiFi Router has the ON/OFF power button, a 12V power input port, and 5 LAN ports, and one USB 3.0 port. 

    2.USB File Support and Accessibility.

    The router comes with Netgear’s ReadyCLOUD service, which allows one to browse USB-hosted files through your local wireless network. One can also use this service to access the USB-hosted files through the internet via Netgear’s website, even when far from the local network.

    It also has a free feature called ReadyShare Vault Software, which allows one to use the USB storage as a backup vault. It also supports DLNA streaming as well as USB Printer sharing.

    However, this specific router does not have mobile internet adapter support, hence in case the cable connection is lost, there is no internet access.

    3.Web Configuration Portal.

    The Netgear Nighthawk AX3000 X4 router comes with a web configuration portal, which one can use to access advanced network features. Some features one can access through the web and mobile portal are:

    a.Guest Connections Control

    It allows activation of guest networks on each radio band, hence ensuring guests do not access the main network. One can also isolate the guest connections from each other. It also allows you to configure dynamic DNS services as well as an Open VPN server, which is an inbuilt feature of the router.

    b.Parental Control Module.

    The parental control module allows one to blacklist domain names and keywords of websites. Email notifications are sent when anyone on the network tries to access a blacklisted domain.

    4.Netgear Mobile router management app.

    Netgear also offers mobile application support for Android and iOS, allowing one to access some basic functions of your router. These include guest network activations as well as signal strength tester.

    5.Netgear Voice Control.

    The Netgear Nighthawk AX3000 X4 comes with voice control through Netgear’s Alexa Skill as well as Google Assistant, allowing hands-free operation of the router. Some commands available include turning on or off guest networks or restarting your router.

    6.Backward Compatibility.

    The Nighthawk AX3000 X4 is backward compatible, being able to support devices that work with 802.11a/b/g/n/ac WiFi Standards.

    Pros

    • Sleek futuristic look.
    • Able to connect dozens of mobile devices and smart devices.
    • Interactive and responsive mobile user application.
    • Can be mounted on walls.
    • Cheaper than alternatives

    Cons

    • Devices that connect must be WiFi 6 compatible to take advantage of the standard.
    • One needs to create an account with the vendor to be able to log in to the mobile application.
    • Only dual-band

    Performance of The Netgear Nighthawk AX4 4-Stream AX3000 WiFi Router

    1.High-speed Ethernet Ports

    The Netgear Nighthawk AX4 4-Stream AX3000 WiFi Router comes with Five (5) 10/100/1000 Mbps Gigabit Ethernet ports, one being used for WAN and the other four for LAN purposes. This allows for faster file transfer and stable connections.

    2.4K UHD Steam Support using 4-stream.

    The Netgear Nighthawk AX4 4-Stream AX3000 WiFi Router comes with 4 WiFi streams, which increase the amount of available bandwidth of the wireless network. This allows for uninterrupted 4K UHD streaming across multiple devices.

    3.Up to 3 Gigabit/sec Wireless connection speeds.

    Using the 160MHZ bandwidth, the router WiFi connection can reach speeds of   of up to 600 Mbits/sec on the 2.4GHz band and up to 2.4Gigabits/sec on the 5GHz band. Giving a total combined throughput of up to 3Gigabits/sec.  The two high-performance antennas on the router allow for an extended wireless network range

    4.Multiple simultaneous connections thanks to OFDMA

    The Netgear Nighthawk AX4 4-Stream AX3000 WiFi Router comes with Orthogonal Frequency Division Multiple Access (OFDMA). This feature allows simultaneous multi-client devices to connect to the WiFi network by splitting the channel into several sub-channels, leading to efficient use of the Bandwidth. These sub-channels can then be shared by up to 30 devices simultaneously

    This allows for more efficient data transmission from multiple devices simultaneously, increasing the reliability and performance of the wireless connection.  This feature works for both downloads and uploads. However, the connecting devices must be OFDMA compatible to be able to take advantage

    5.1024 QAM, MU-MIMO, and BeamForming technology.

    The router supports 1024 QAM, which results in a data rate increase of up to 25% as well as MU-MIMO technology which allows for simultaneous connections of multiple devices without competing for the bandwidth. The use of 1024 QAM, MU-MIMO technology in combination with the BeamForming technology that focuses the signal towards the compatible clients, helps boost the connection speeds with more stable throughput.

    Specifications Summary

    Dimensions

    13.38 x 8.11 x 2.24 inches

    Weight

    1.32 lb. (600g)

    WiFi Specification

    802.11ax Dual Band WiFi) with 2.4GHz and 5GHz 

    2.4Ghz Band

    2.4GHz AX: 2x2 (Tx/Rx) 1024/256 QAM 40/20MHz, up to 600Mbps

    5GHz Band

    5GHz AX: 2x2 (Tx/Rx) 1024 QAM 160/80/40/20MHz, up to 2400Mbps

    WiFi Range

    Medium to large homes 

    Ethernet Ports

    Five (5) 10/100/1000 Mbps Gigabit Ethernet ports (1 WAN & 4 LAN)  

    Data Transfer rates

    3GBps

    RAM

    256MB Flash - MXIC (Macronix a182209 MX30LF2G18AC-TI) 512MB  RAM -

    CPU

    800Mhz Dual-core processor 

    Network Processor

    AnyWAN GRX350 CPE network processor (S8503N15 SLMD9)

    USB Ports

    1 x USB 3.0

    Wireless Security

    64/128-bit WEP, WPA/WPA2, WPA-PSK/WPA2-PSK

     

    Reasons to buy

    After going through the features of the Netgear Nighthawk AX4 4-Stream AX3000 WiFi Router, let us have a look at some reasons why you should buy it:

    • Supports WiFi 6 Standards with entry-level prices: This router is one of the entry-level routers that support WiFi 6 standards in terms of pricing.
    • Intelligent assistant: It supports both Alexa and Google Assistant allowing hands-free operation.
    • Backward Compatibility: This means that devices that do not support WiFi 6 standard can still connect to the router without needing to replace.
    • Inbuilt Open VPN Client which allows you to create Virtual Private Networks with ease.
    • Parental control features allow for control of the content access across the network. This is very helpful where you have kids connecting to the network.

    Is the Netgear Nighthawk AX3000 AX4 WiFi 6 Router worth buying?

    In terms of performance, pricing, and ease of setup, the Netgear Nighthawk AX3000 AX4 WiFi 6 Router is a good purchase for a modern home setup. It can support about 20 devices and spaces of 1500 square feet. It performs relatively well in comparison to some other entry-level WiFi 6 standard routers. Currently, the router costs $89.90 on Amazon and can be purchased here.

    Comparison of Netgear Nighthawk AX3000 AX4 WiFi 6 Router with Asus RT AX3000 and TP-Link AX3000.

    In the table below, we are going to do a comparison with other entry-level routers that support the WiFi 6 standard.

     

    Asus RT AX3000                                                               TP-Link AX3000

     

    Specification

    Asus AX88U

     

    Nighthawk AX3000 AX4

    TP-Link AX3000

     

    WiFi Specification

    802.11ax Dual Band WiFi) with 2.4GHz and 5GHz

    802.11ax Dual Band WiFi) with 2.4GHz and 5GHz

    802.11ax Dual Band WiFi) with 2.4GHz and 5GHz

    Storage Memory

    256 MB Flash

    256 MB Flash

    128MB

    RAM

    512MB

    512MB

    256MB

    Ethernet Ports

    5 ports (1 WAN & 4 LAN)  

    5 ports (1 WAN & 4 LAN)  

    5 ports (1 WAN & 4 LAN)  

    USB ports

    1 x USB 3.0

    1 x USB 3.0

    1 x USB 3.0

    Maximum WiFi Speeds

    2400 Mbits/sec

    2400 Mbits/sec

    2400 Mbits/sec

    BeamForming

    Yes

    Yes

    Yes

    Number of external Antennae

    four

    two

    four

    Dedicated Mobile Application

    No

    Yes

    Yes

    External memory Slot

    No

    Yes

    Yes

    Supports Mesh WiFi

    Yes

    No

    No

    Price

    $179.99

    $89.90

    $109.90

     

      FAQ: Frequently Asked Questions.

    1.Is the Nighthawk a good router?

    Nighthawk is a good, affordable entry-level router that supports WiFi 6f or a home setup

    2.What does AX mean on a router?

    AX means the router supports the 802.11ax (WiFi 6) Standards.

    3.What is AX1800, AX4300, AX1800, AX5400, AX6200, AX6000, AX3000 speed? The AX stands for the WiFi 6 standards, while the number that follows shows the Maximum WiFi speeds for example AX 1800 means speeds of 1800 Megabits per second, AX 3000, 3000 Megabits per second, etc.

    4.What is the difference between a gaming router and a regular router?

    A gaming router is a specialized router with enhanced Quality of Service and prioritized bandwidth to ensure that the gaming experience is buffer-free.