TP-Link Archer C9 AC1900 WiFi Router Review

TP-Link Archer C9

TP-Link Archer C9 is already sold in the market for a really long time.  It is actually one of the prettiest wireless router sold by TP-Link with a white glass at the front and a standing design. The specs underneath the beautiful design is pretty decent too. The mid range Archer C9 supports Dual-Band Wireless AC1900 .

The design of this wireless router is pretty elegant and the standing design will give it slightly better signal as it will be less likely to block the antenna. The LEDs lit up in a blue color, it would have been perfect if those LEDs are white as well. It is possible to wall mount the Archer C9 and TP-Link included a wall hook and a drilling template. 

Hardware and Specs

The Archer C9 have been sold in the market for quite some time now. Being an AC1900 router, the maximum link speed is 1300Mbps on the 5Ghz band and 600Mbps on the 2.4Ghz. Realistically, we are expecting around 400Mbps on the 5Ghz band and 80Mbps on the 2.4Ghz band.

You would need a good Wireless AC receiver and use the 5Ghz band in order to have good speed. One downside with the Archer C9 is the lack of MU-MIMO due to the older chipset. Your devices with MU-MIMO will not be able to enjoy the benefits with this router. 

The other specs are pretty standard. It has 2 USB ports with one of them being USB 3.0 and 4 Gigabit Ethernet LAN ports. The Archer C9 is powered by a dual-core 1Ghz Broadcom CPU and it has 3 external removable antennas. The wireless configuration is a 3×3 Tri-Stream design.

Initial Config and Unifi Setup

TP-Link Archer C9 supports Unifi, Maxis and TIME in Malaysia. The initial setup procedure is really simple and it will let you to select your ISP profile in the setup wizard. It also supports Unifi HyppTV and Maxis VOIP. The LAN1 is reserved for HyppTV under the Unifi profile and LAN4 is reserved for VOIP under the Maxis profile.

Firmware and Interface

The interface of the Archer C9 is easy to use and navigate around. Unlike the more expensive Archer C2300, the C9 comes with slightly lesser features. It has all the basic features you will expect from a wireless router such as port forwarding, DDNS, guest WiFi and etc.

For other more advanced features, it has a built-in VPN server and Guest WiFi support. TP-Link also included a basic parental control features which support time limit and content filtering. There is also a built-in QoS service but the QoS does not work when NAT Boost is enabled. Do not disable NAT Boost as it will cause performance problem.

As for the dual USB ports, TP-Link lets you to share files and printer on the network. The router support the Samba sharing protocol which is supported on Windows and MacOS. There is also a FTP server support if you need it. The Archer C9 also supports access point mode.

TP-Link Tether app also comes in handy when you want to change some quick settings on your phone or check the status of your home network. Although it is possible to setup your router using the app, I prefer the web version as you can’t choose ISP profile on the Tether app.

WiFi Performance Benchmark

We will determined how well Archer C9 performed in our WiFi performance benchmark test. In this test, we will be using a laptop and conduct WiFi speed test using the Ookla’s Speedtest app in 2 spots around my apartment. My laptop support wireless AC up to AC1200. Most devices in the market support WiFi up to AC1200. 

The performance is expected for an older router like the Archer C9. While short distance performance is still pretty decent for today’s standard, the long distance performance suffered a little. The older chipset may not have good noise mitigation as a modern wireless routers. 

Closing Thoughts

Is the Archer C9 a good wireless router? We think it is a decent router although slightly dated in today’s standard. But, we got to be honest that the newer Archer A9 with a newer chipset will perform better than the Archer C9. But the Archer C9 comes with an extra USB 3.0 port.

However, the Archer C9 is still a beautiful wireless router and I guess there are people who value such pretty design to be placed in the middle of their living room. 

TP-Link Archer C9

TP-Link Archer C9 features a pretty design with decent performance. 

8.3

Tubi Score

Good Stuff

  • All Gigabit Ethernet ports
  • Pretty design

Bad Stuff

  • No MU-MIMO
  • Slower long distance speed

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