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Features

The C9 has the same new interface and feature set as the C8. So see that review for all the details.

TP-LINK Archer C9 Network Map

TP-LINK Archer C9 Network Map

Storage Performance

Table 2 summarizes storage performance for selected AC1900 class routers with USB 2.0 ports. The best of the bunch still is the Linksys WRT1900AC, which turns in 30 MB/s throughput in three out of four benchmarks.

  TP-LINK Archer C9 Linksys WRT1900AC Linksys EA6900 NETGEAR R7000 ASUS RT-AC68U
Processor Broadcom BCM4709A Marvell MV78230 Broadcom BCM4708A Broadcom BCM4709A Broadcom BCM4708A
FAT32 Write (MBytes/s) 22.8 28.7 14.5 24.8 11.8
FAT32 Read (MBytes/s) 28.7 31.0 21.0 27.8 24.0
NTFS Write (MBytes/s) 17.2 30.1 17.2 27.9 23.7
NTFS Read (MBytes/s) 23.9 30.8 21.2 27.9 24.2
Table 2: File copy throughput - USB 2.0 (MBytes/sec)

Switching to USB 3.0 results in Table 3, the Archer C9 doesn't do very well, except for FAT32 Read. Otherwise it turns in very USB 2.0-like numbers. Once again, the Linksys WRT1900AC is the one to beat for storage performance in AC1900 class routers.

  TP-LINK Archer C9 Linksys WRT1900AC Linksys EA6900 NETGEAR R7000 ASUS RT-AC68U
Processor Broadcom BCM4709A Marvell MV78230 Broadcom BCM4708A Broadcom BCM4709A Broadcom BCM4708A
FAT32 Write (MBytes/s) 27.8 61.1 15.6 33.4 11.7*
FAT32 Read (MBytes/s) 43.0 76.5 22.1 57.4 21.6*
NTFS Write (MBytes/s) 17.5 66.7 17.4 36.8 23.6*
NTFS Read (MBytes/s) 25.5 75.1 22.4 57.7 24.3*
Table 3: File copy throughput - USB 3.0 (MBytes/sec)
* = "Reducing USB 3.0 interference" setting enabled

Routing Performance

Routing performance for the C9 loaded with 3.15.27 Build 20141015 Rel.38077n firmware using our standard test method is summarized in Table 4 with the C8's results. Tests with both NAT Boost enabled (the default) and disabled were run.

Test Description Archer C9 Archer C8 Archer C9
(NAT Boost off)
Archer C8
(NAT Boost off)
WAN - LAN (Mbps) 756 777 371 321
LAN - WAN (Mbps) 755 771 394 311
Total Simultaneous (Mbps) 1190 1080 431 313
Maximum Simultaneous Connections 7820 7821 - -
Firmware Version 3.15.27 Build 20141015 Rel.38077n 3.16.27 Build 20140903 Rel. 75232 3.15.27 Build 20141015 Rel.38077n 3.16.27 Build 20140903 Rel. 75232
Table 4: Routing throughput

Table 4 shows the C9 with NAT Boost disabled, which is required to use Bandwidth Control, cuts throughput by more than 50%. This is the same as we found with the C8.

The IxChariot composite plot for unidirectional up and downlink tests shows periodic peak throughput above 900 Mbps in both directions.

TP-LINK Archer C9 routing unidirectional throughput

TP-LINK Archer C9 routing unidirectional throughput

The C9's simultaneous up/downlink throughput doesn't set a new Chart high. But like the C8, the C9 gives preference to upload traffic when both directions are fully loaded.

TP-LINK Archer C9 routing bidirectional throughput

TP-LINK Archer C9 routing bidirectional throughput

Here's the unidirectional plot with NAT Boost disabled.

TP-LINK Archer C9 routing unidirectional throughput - NAT Boost disabled

TP-LINK Archer C9 routing unidirectional throughput - NAT Boost disabled

And the bidirectional plot.

TP-LINK Archer C9 routing bidirectional throughput - NAT Boost disabled

TP-LINK Archer C9 routing bidirectional throughput - NAT Boost disabled

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