In the world of competitive gaming, latency is everything as even a small delay would be the difference between winning or losing a competitive game. While using a wired Ethernet connection is always preferred, that’s not possible for mobile gamers or those staying in a rental property.
ASUS latest ROG Rapture GT6 is a Wi-Fi 6 AX10000 Tri-Band mesh Wi-Fi system. It’s a mesh Wi-Fi system specifically designed for gamers with several features that will help to optimize the overall network latency and improve the consistency of the network for a seamless gaming experience.
The GT6 is designed for low latency performance and high consistency. This means it will reduce ping spike or stutter especially when the network is busy. ASUS achieved this with a combination of specially designed hardware optimized for low latency and their signature ASUSWRT software optimization.
I appreciate how well made is the ROG Rapture GT6. It’s a really premium product with a sophisticated design language. My favorite element would be the semi transparent smoke black acrylic on the top which reveals the antenna system and the heatsink of the product with ROG wording on it.
Of course, a gaming product is not complete without having some RGB flare. The ROG Rapture GT6 comes with ASUS RGB lighting. There are plenty of lighting effects that can be customized on the app or the web interace. Unfortunately, it doesn’t support Aura Sync with other ASUS products.
The lighting effect is very well-done like what you would expect from any other ROG products. It’s really bright and vibrant without any dim-spot. Even the small power indicator is RGB and it actually shares the same effect as the ROG eye logo.
The ROG Rapture GT6 comes in either black or white color. It’s retailing at RM2488 in Malaysia with a 3 years warranty. The pricing might be premium but it’s not that far off from ASUS own ZenWiFi XT8 AX6600 mesh system and it’s relatively more affordable than the ZenWiFi XT12 AX11000 mesh system.
Hardware and Specs
The ROG Rapture is powered by a 1.7GHz Broadcom Triple-Core CPU and 512MB DDR4 RAM. As for the Wi-Fi radio, the ROG Rapture GT6 comes with Tri-Band Wi-Fi 6 AX11000 with a second 5GHz band that’s being used as the dedicated wireless backhaul to boost performance for the mesh network.
The router comes with a 2.5G Ethernet WAN port and 3 Gigabit Ethernet LAN ports. ASUS also included a single USB port that can be used for file sharing from a USB external hard drive. I wish ASUS can at least included a second 2.5G port as that would make it future proof for faster Internet beyond 1Gbps.
Wi-Fi Performance Test
I’ll be testing the performance of the ROG Rapture GT6 like how I test other mesh products by installing it in my home and testing the performance at various points in my property. For convenience, I will be using an iPhone to condust speed test on the 5GHz Wi-Fi network with 160MHz mode enabled.
Comparing to other ASUS mesh products, the performance of the ROG Rapture GT6 sit right between the ZenWiFi XT12 and ZenWiFi XT8. That’s not really a surprise considering that the price is right in the middle of the 2 products on the ZenWiFi series as well.
Another part that’s really important for a gaming router would be the loaded latency test. Unlike normal latency test, loaded latency would take in account of the latency when the network is busy. ASUS always performed well on the loaded latency test and the ROG Rapture GT6 is taking it up a notch.
While this would benefit gamers, it’s beneficial for normal users as well. Things like WhatsApp calls would be smoother due to the lower latency connection. It will benefit latency sensitive applications such as live video streaming and live video conference calls which is an added benefit as well.
Gaming Port on Mesh Node
Another good part of the ROG Rapture GT6 is I can connect my gaming PC in my bedroom directly to the mesh unit of ROG Rapture GT6 with a LAN cable. This provide a significantly faster performance than the Intel AX210 Wi-Fi card in my PC due to the faster Wi-Fi backhaul on the GT6.
My gaming PC can usually obtain around 450Mbps directly from the main router with the built-in Intel AX210 Wi-Fi card. However, I can get up to 900Mbps when my PC is connected to the ROG Rapture GT6 wireless mesh node with a LAN cable. The latency is more consistent than the built-in Wi-Fi as well.
This will be great for those having their gaming PC or gaming console in another room while adding a LAN cable to the main router is not possible. While it’s still not as good as an actual direct LAN cable connection, it’s very close and I would say it’s almost unnoticeable.
Firmware and Features
While having a good hardware is crucial, the key to good performance lies in the software and this is where ASUS truly excels. The ROG Rapture is the third generation ROG gaming routers and it comes with the all the latest incremental improvements that ASUS have made over the years.
If you’re coming from an older ASUS router, you’ll feel right at home as most of the interface remain the same. It’s very powerful and customizable down to the small aspects like tuning the algorithm of the smart connect band steering feature and configuring the VPN server or clients.
Like any ROG branded routers, it comes with the full-suite of gaming features to accelerate gaming performance. While it’s mostly just better QoS, it work pretty well in reality by ensuring your games always have a higher priority that other devices, reducing congestion and improving consistency.
I tried to play a match of Dota 2 while having another devices downloading Steam games and the latency of my game remain consistent at 10ms. It doesn’t seem to affect the call quality of Discord as well. On my older routers, it will cause some ping spike and stutter but it’s perfectly smooth on ROG Rapture GT6.
The router can automatically configure the suitable NAT profile for some games that require this to function properly. This is very useful for some console games where it’s very sensitive on the NAT profile. The ROG Rapture GT6 is able to configure it easily with just one click on the interface.
It has something for mobile gamers as well. The ASUS Router app comes with a one-click mobile game booster feature that will prioritize the connectivity of that particular device. This will be really helpful for mobile gamers relying on Wi-Fi connection as this will optimize the Wi-Fi performance to that device.
It also comes with the AiProtection Pro feature with free liftetime usage. The enterprise grade firewall can block scam or malware infected website from being accessed. As for the advanced parental control, it can filter web content based on categories and limit Internet usage time for selected devices.
Not everything on the ROG Rapture GT6 is about gaming as it has the conventional AdaptiveQoS feature from ASUS. You can optimize your network for media streaming or work-from-home profile which will enhance performance for office apps such as Microsoft Teams or Zoom conference calls.
There’s also a handy speedtest feature to test the performance of your network from the router. This will produce the most accurate result since it prevents any kind of bottleneck either by the interface or the device. It’s a handy tool to diagnose Internet performance issue which is really crucial for gamers.
The ROG Rapture GT6 is a great product for gamers especially those who rely on Wi-Fi connection to game. It’s probably the closest you can get to a wired cable performance without having to use a physical LAN cable connected. The performance is lightning fast with excellent loaded latency optimization.
As for the normal users, the ROG Rapture GT6 is still a great product as the excelllent Wi-Fi performance will benefit day-to-day usage as well. It’s very well optimized to handle a busy network which will enhance the smoothness of latency sensitive applications such as Wi-Fi calls and live video streaming.
ROG Rapture GT6
- Good congestion management
- High performance mesh network with tri-band connectivity
- Advanced game acceleration feature
- Only 3 Gigabit LAN ports