Netgear Nighthawk AX12 Wi-Fi 6 router review

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Netgear AX12 Nighthawk Gaming router

A while ago, Netgear announced a series of routers that look like they had flown away out of the Star Wars Death Star back home, towards Earth. The time has come, that flagship Battlestar based product has landed here in the Guru3D lab for a thorough review. And we can already spill some beans, it's impressive. Not just the looks are daunting, the router is compatible with the new AX standard aka WIFI 6. Netgear's flagship router and has been fitted with a powerful SoC and the means to deliver. Also included (a first for Netgear) is a compatible up-to 5 Gbps ethernet LAN jack (and correct me if I am wrong, but originally this was advertised as a 2.5 GigE product, so it had an upgrade). Netgear doesn't only support Wi-Fi 6, the brand-new AX Wi-Fi standard; but this is a dual-band model, meaning it’s capable of delivering more data throughput.  

The router is a 12-stream AX6000 Wi-Fi router powered by a quad-core 2.2 GHz processor, offering 10.8GBps Wi-Fi (throughput) speeds and a 2.5G multi-gig ethernet interface as either a LAN or WAN. For mobile devices, the new router supports Gigabit Wi-Fi, as well as interface-free channels with dynamic frequency selection. The router includes a single 2.4GHz band and 5GHz bands. Wired connectivity is high-end as well: the router supports up to 5x 1 Gbps connections and 1x five Gigabit Ethernet port for networking.

  • 802.11ax Dual Band WiFi (AX6000)
  • 2.4GHz AX: 4x4 (Tx/Rx) 1024 QAM 20/40MHz, up to 1.2Gbps
  • 5GHz AX: 8x8 (Tx/Rx) 1024 QAM 20/40/80/80+80MHz, up to 4.8Gbps
  • Backwards compatible with 802.11a/b/g/n/ac WiFi

For the wired side of all things internet, the unit has five-gigabit ethernet ports, ports can be combined for link aggregation. In addition, there is a full port on it that can handle up to 5 Gb/s. In addition to the Ethernet ports, there is 2x 3.0 USB on it. 

The Netgear Nighthawk AX12 will be a super-fast router, handy for large families where everyone goes online. The router supports the new Wireless AX standard. This keeps your connection stable even if you use more than 30 devices at the same time. This way you stream and play at the same time, while also controlling all your smart home devices. The new WiFi technology ensures that you maintain good speed even at a greater distance.  Since the AX12 is WiFi 6 compatible, it supports OFDMA allowing the unit to send data to multiple devices in parallel at the same time, so there is less chance of experiencing lag or stuttering real-time data streams. WiFi won’t appear to slow down if lots of people are using it intensively at the same time. Routers these days you can purchase a dime a dozen and most of them end up all being the same, as such the more predominant manufacturers continuously seek to add new features to their products in order to differentiate themselves in the market. And that's difficult as there aren't many extras you can add to a router really, you are tied to industry Ethernet and WIFI standards, you can make sure the throughput of the devices is good enough for modern age high-bandwidth file throughput and you can make the firmware as sexy as possible with a nice GUI and extensive feature set.

The Nighthawk X12 router is an 802.11ax spec router fitted with a quad-core 2.2 GHz processor that is paired with 512 MB ram and 1GB flash memory storage. In addition to a WAN port, there are five LAN ports, one thus which can be used as a dedicated gaming port. The X12 ain't cheap but for this segment not oo expensive either, priced at 399 EUR/USD. Have a peek at the product and then let's dive into the review. 


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