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Features

The EA9500's has Linksys' standard "Smart Wi-Fi" feature set. The main dashboard shown below is the same found on other Smart Wi-Fi routers.

Smart Wi-Fi Dashboard

Smart Wi-Fi Dashboard

Linksys's routing features continue to lag far behind ASUS and somewhat behind NETGEAR's. The WRT1900AC review contains an accurate summary of the Smart Wi-Fi feature set and also its shortcomings. I won't belabor this point.

The default wireless settings are shown in the next screenshot. Note "Smart Connect" band-steering is supported only between the two 5 GHz radios, the same as on the 3x3 tri-radio EA9200.

Wi-Fi Defaults

Wi-Fi Defaults

Turning off 5 GHz band steering unlocks all 5 GHz radio controls and exposes 5 GHz high-band controls. The settings shown below have been changed from the defaults.

5 GHz band steering disabled

5 GHz band steering disabled

Replacing home.html with advanced-wireless.html in the admin URL shows the 2.4 GHz...

2.4 GHz advanced wireless settings

2.4 GHz advanced wireless settings

...5 GHz...

5 GHz radio defaults

5 GHz advanced wireless settings

...and Broadcom advanced wireless screens. MU-MIMO is enabled on both low and high band radios. Linksys advised, however, that only four MU-MIMO devices are supported with the initial firmware release (2 per radio). We'll dig into this more when we look at MU-MIMO performance.

Broadcom advanced wireless settings

Broadcom advanced wireless settings

The advanced wireless settings include transmit power and transmission rate settings that could come in handy, but could also mess you up badly. So don't mess with these unless you know what you're doing. The Broadcom screen controls are interesting. I'll let you know if Linksys explains the WiFi Certification support settting and why it's disabled by default.

The MU-MIMO disables could come in handy. Apparently some folks don't like their Samsung Galaxy S7's falling back to 1x1 mode when they connect to a MU-MIMO enabled router. Not helpful if you have only one MU-MIMO enabled device. It would have been nice to see airtime fairness enables here, too.

Still missing are timed wireless radio scheduling and wireless bridge or wireless repeating modes.

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