NETGEAR Makes The Nighthawk X4 Official

Photo of author

Tim Higgins

NETGEAR logoNETGEAR has announced its first AC2350 class router.

The R7500 Nighthawk X4 is one of NETGEAR’s more badly-kept secrets, having been mistakenly shown at a Taipei fan event in May. It becomes the second 4×4 "wave 2" 802.11ac router, joining ASUS’ RT-AC87U/R.

The X4’s "AC2350" classification is less inflated than ASUS’ "AC2400" for its RT-AC87U/R. But both indicate the same maximum link rates of 1733 Mbps in 5 GHz and 600 Mbps in 2.4 GHz, assuming you are using a 4×4 client.

Like the ASUS, the R7500 uses a dual-processor architecture with Quantenna’s QSR1000 4×4 802.11ac solution as the 5 GHz radio. But NETGEAR chose a different path for its main CPU, using a dual-core 1.4 GHz Qualcomm CPU.

NETGEAR R7500 Nighthawk X4

NETGEAR R7500 Nighthawk X4

The Qualcomm CPU endows the R7500 with application and device aware dynamic QoS, courtesy of Qualcomm’s StreamBoost QoS technology. The processor also brings dual USB 3.0 and one eSATA ports for higher performance storage sharing. NETGEAR said it has measured 80 MB/s reads from the USB 3.0 port and up to 95 MB/s reads via eSATA. Writes to both port flavors are in the 40 – 45 MB/s range.

Of course, the single WAN and four switched LAN ports are Gigabit Ethernet. And like other Nightwawks, the X4 supports NETGEAR’s Genie administration via browser and iOs / Android apps, ReadySHARE vault automatic Windows client backup, ReadySHARE USB storage and printer sharing, parental controls, guest networks, secure access via OpenVPN and DLNA server.

NETGEAR says it has no immediate plans to release a 4×4 client and/or bridge, similar to ASUS’ EA-AC87 that is supposed to ship later this month. Instead, buyers wanting to access the X4’s full wireless bandwidth will need to rely on a second copy of the X4 set to wireless bridge mode.

If you’re looking for MU-MIMO support, you’re also out of luck. NETGEAR said that the R7500 will not support Multi-User MIMO when shipments begin, but it will be added via a future firmware upgrade.

If you want a crack at the Nighthawk X4, you can pick one up now at its MSRP of $279.99.

Related posts

SMC intros dual-band outdoor AP/bridges

SMC Networks new outdoor access point / bridges targeted at wireless SMB building-to-building links.

The new SMC EliteConnect Outdoor Bridges come in two models: the SMC2890W-AG with external antenna options for both the 5GHz and 2.4GHz radio and the SMC2891W-AG with integrated 5GHz antenna as well as external options for both 5GHz and 2.4GHz.

Qualcomm Throws Down Four-Stream Draft 802.11n Chipset

Qualcomm today introduced a dual-band 4x4 802.11n chipset capable of a top raw data rate of 600 Mbps.

NETGEAR Announces AC1900 Cable Modem Router

NETGEAR has announced a cable modem combo version of its popular AC1900 router.