The TP-Link Archer C7 Router Review

If you need a decent wireless router at a low price, the TP-Link Archer C7 (AC1750) model gets the job done. With the dual-band Gigabit (V2) design, you would think it is more expensive. Both the 2.4GHz and the 5GHz frequency bands are faster than the competitive brands out there.

The Wi-Fi router has ample features with Gigabit LAN ports, USB 2.0 ports, management settings and more. The only gripe you may have is the web interface that is not as user-friendly as you would like it to be.

Therefore, do you feel the lacking of web interface makes it a bad choice? We say no as it shines in other sections once connected.


What Makes the Archer C7 Unique?

TP-Link Archer C7

First off, you can buy the Archer C7 for fewer than 100 bucks and you can use open-source software with it. An additional nice thing is the small footprint design taking up less space on your desk.

DesignPrime Features

The TP-Link Archer C7 has a jet-black exterior and one would expect a bit more dazzle. The router has a modest design and measures 9.5-inches by 1.4-inches. There are three detachable antennas to handle the 5GHz traffic. Another notable thing is it has RP-SMA connectors. This allows you to swap them out for high-gain ones.

Although the antennas are, rated 5dBI compared to the standard 3dBI antennas. To get the strongest signal you can move the antennas around. The interior of the device has loads of 2.4GHz patch antennas to help reduce the inter-channel interface.

On the front panel, you have all the LED indicator lights advising you on the status of the unit. Once connected with a stable signal the lights are green. Regrettably, there are many lights and has no switch to turn off the disco lights. On the rear, you have four GB LAN ports, GB WAN port, and two by 2.0 USB ports.

There is a reset/WPS switch, on/off button, two by USB activity lights, and a Wi-Fi /off switch. Further, once connected you have your advanced and basic settings.

With the Archer C7, you can plug it in, play, and forget about the annoying buffering. There are three powerful detachable external antennas and three internal ones. This gives you six highly efficient antennas for long-range connecting. What makes the wireless router even more attractive is the support of the latest Wireless-AC technology.

Assign different devices to the 2.4 or 5GHz bands, for a maximum speed performance. You can connect wired devices such as your PC, MAC, PS, Xbox and more via the GB Ethernet ports. Share data with printers and external hard drives while using the USB port.

With the powerful CPU to enjoy online gaming, download files, stream movies, and share media with other connected devices.

In addition, if you are a small business owner you will find the C7 exceptional as it supports the latest encryption standards. Authentication of users done via the Radius server and it has a powerful inspection firewall. However, it does not have the network address filter.

As the TP-Link C7 is an open-source firmware router, it helps with the extension of features. The downside is the device does not do automated updates. You need to do this manually and can take a few minutes. The upside is you get parental control, can use it with loads of mobile devices, and view the packets coming in and going out.

Other FEATURES
  • One standout feature of the Archer C7 is the Wi-Fi transmission switch – this is a great trait to have as you can switch it off when away on vacation
  • With the included power button you can turn it off to add users via the WPS trait and doubles as a reset switch
  • There are four LAN ports and two USB 2.0 ports
  • On the inside of the unit, it is loaded with a Qualcomm’s Scorpio chip, a 720MHz processor, and 128MB of RAM
  • There are 3 by external and 3 by internal antennas
  • The wireless routers designed with dual-band 802.11ac Wi-Fi
  • At five feet the router packs an 802.11ac performance with a speed of 363.6Mbps
  • Unfortunately, the Wi-Fi router does not have DD-WRT, MU-MIMO, but has an AC1750 link rate, QoS, Security, parental control and supports IPv6
  • The products backed with a one-year warranty

Performance

The C7 has Beamforming to direct data directly to the receiver and handles up to 3-lanes of traffic. With the lack of the MU-MIMO, connecting loads of devices might become lagging or if used in a crowded environment. At 5-feet, both frequency bands scored up to 360.6Mbps. When using the 2.4GHz band at 15-feet the transfer speed is 59.2Mbps. At 5-feet, the 5GHz scored 304.4Mbps and stays connected up to 30-feet away. Further, it supports up to three different devices connected to it.

TP-Link Archer C7

What is in the box?
  • The Archer C7 (AC1750) Wi-Fi Router
  • Power Supply
  • Three Detachable Antennas
  • Ethernet Cable
  • Quick Installation Guide
Customer Feedback

When reading the TP-Link Archer C7 reviews, you can see users have mixed feelings related to this wireless router.

Pros
  • As an excellent 5GHz band performance
  • Great price
  • Designed with two USB ports
  • Has an on/off switch for the Wi-Fi transmission
  • Can restrict websites
  • Easy to install
  • Loads of management features
  • Fast performance on both frequency bands
Cons
  • Only has 2.0 USB and not 3.0 USB ports

System Requirements

Once you power up the Archer C7 you can configure it with the Web browser. Included you receive the network name and password underneath the device and you can change these settings. You can use the automated setup or do the configuration manually. Further, you can choose to set up the router with only one band or dual-band function. There is a TP-Link Tether app available to use on your Android or iOS device. With the application, you can access the wireless settings, update the firmware, manage the device, and give guests privileges.

System requirements are as follows:

  • Microsoft Windows 98SE
  • NT, 2000
  • XP, Vista™
  • Windows 7
  • Windows 8/8.1/10
    MAC OS
  • NetWare UNIX
  • Linux


Final Thoughts

The TP-Link Archer C7 has a powerful performance and a great set of features. Compared to other budget wireless routers this one scores well when used with both frequency bands. You have ample management settings with loads of ports. The user interface and update can be a bit more user-friendly but remains one of the fastest wireless routers available.

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