TP-Link Deco X90 Review: Ultimate Signal Coverage

Mesh WiFi system is the best solution to WiFi dead zones and poor signal at home. TP-Link Deco happens to be one of the best in the industry and they are getting even better with the new flagship WiFi 6 Deco X90 mesh WiFi system featuring Tri-Band AX6600 connectivity.

TP-Link Deco X90 is a significant upgrade over their previous product. It comes with the latest Wi-Fi 6 technology with a maximum capacity of 6600Mbps. The 2-pack model is now available for sale at RM1499 and TP-Link claims it can cover up to 6000 square feet.

The Deco X90 stand-out feature is the Tri-Band AX6600 network. This means it has a ton of capacity for the mesh backhaul. Combined with TP-Link’s Deco mesh technology with class-leading roaming performance, it will offers a truly seamless mesh WiFi experience.

So, what’s the point of having Tri-Band or AX6600? This will ensure a sufficient bandwidth between the backhaul of the main unit and the mesh node. It will boost the maximum WiFi speed possible when connected to the mesh node thanks to the greatly enhanced system capacity.

Table of Contents

Design is another great element where the Deco X90 excels. It’s unapologetically clean with the minimalistic design without any external antennas. The matte white color scheme will also let the device blends into almost every interior design easily as well.

Deco X90 device

TP-Link Deco X90

9.3

Tubi Rating

PROS

  • Good performance and strong coverage
  • Robust seamless roaming feature
  • Comprehensive parental control and security features

CONS

  • Only 2 Ethernet ports on each unit
  • Some HomeShield features require Pro subscription

Installing the Deco X90

I stay in a bigger apartment which means poor WiFi coverage at some spots at home. The Deco X90 will replace the job of my existing wireless router. This means I will connect it to the fibre modem provided by my Internet service provider at the living-room.

Then, I placed the second unit at at the walkway leading to the bedrooms. The second unit will then work wirelessly with the main unit and blanket my house with a strong and fast WiFi coverage. This resulted in fast WiFi speed exceeding 500Mbps at every corner of my apartment.

WiFi Performance

Single Unit Performance

Performance is definitely the key selling point of the Deco X90. I can obtain WiFi speed exceeding 800Mbps easily when running speed test on my iPhone 12 Pro when testing the WiFi speed on the main unit..

Comparing against other TP-Link routers, the performance of the Deco X90 doesn’t disappoint. I also tested the WiFi speed of the Deco X90 and compared it against other TP-Link routers after 2 walls. Surprisingly, the Deco X90 is even slightly faster than the Archer AX90.

Mesh WiFi Performance

When testing the WiFi speed in my bedroom, it’s much faster than any other Deco mesh WiFi system I tested in the past. I can get slightly more than 500Mbps which is a great improvement over the previous flagship Deco M9 Plus. The Deco X90 is truly lightning fast in our test.

Roaming and AP Steering

Roaming is where TP-Link Deco X90 shines. The new AI self-learning roaming algorithm is very responsive at making roaming decision. As I walk around my house, my phone will always switch to the fastest network seamlessly.

This is not a surprise considering that the Deco X90 supports the full 802.11k/v/r fast roaming and fast transition standard. TP-Link’s roaming algorithm is very good at mesh node steering and band steering decision, leading to a really pleasant user-experience on the system.

Deco X90 Hardware and Specs

2.4GhzWi-Fi 6 up to 574 Mbps (2×2 40Mhz)
5Ghz Band 1Wi-Fi 6 capable up to 1201Mbps (2×2 80Mhz)
5Ghz Band 2Wi-Fi 6 up to 4804Mbps (4×4 160Mhz)
CPUBroadcom BCM6755 1.5Ghz Quad-Core CPU
RAM512MB
Ports1x 2.5G WAN/LAN + 1x Gigabit WAN/LAN

Hardware wise, the Deco X90 features a fast 1.5Ghz Quad-Core CPU from Broadcom. This will ensure smooth performance when more devices are connected to the system. In fact, TP-Link claims the system can support up to 250 devices connected simultaneously. View more on TP-Link’s website.

Disappointingly, the Deco X90 still comes with only 2 ports and you’ll need to purchase a Gigabit switch if you wish to add more ports. Thankfully, TP-Link added a faster 2.5G port on each unit which will be helpful for those with a faster 2Gbps Internet connection.

I did a quick tear-down of the Deco X90 and what caught my eye is the antenna design. It’s rare to see such complicated RF design on a consumer level product. This is probably why the Deco X90 performs so well on the 5Ghz WiFi signal and speed test.

TP-Link Deco App and Features

All the features of the Deco X90 can only be controlled by the Deco app. Overall, I find the Deco app to be user-friendly with a very minimal learning curve. TP-Link does release frequent software update to improve the performance and security of the system.

The app will show all the devices connected to each unit and their current network speed. It will also show an option to disable the mesh feature which can be helpful for certain devices such as smart home gadgets which do not move aroun.

HomeShield Pro Security Suite

The Deco X90 comes with the upgraded HomeShield advanced enterprise-grade firewall feature. It can detect malware infected websites and block it from devices connected to the WiFi network. TP-Link claims that It’s able to isolate malware infected device as well.

HomeShield Pro Parental Control

TP-Link included their upgraded HomeShield Pro parental control on the Deco X90. The system can block webpages and apps by category rather than having to input the websites manually. TP-Link’s database is very extensive and comprehensive in my test with selected websites.

In addition to parental control, it offers time usage quota limitation and time scheduling function. Since the system is linked to TP-Link cloud, the parental control function can be managed even when the Deco app is not connected to the home WiFi network.

The upgraded reporting function will report usage patterns and usage statistics of selected devices. It even show the most frequently browsed webpages and list of blocked website. This will be incredibly helpful to monitor the network usage of minors in the family.

Unfortunately, the free tier of HomeShield Basic only includes the security and the website blocking feature. The Pro tier costs RM24.90/month for the other features. There’s a 30 days trial for those that want to try the feature. Check out TP-Link’s portal for more information. 

Closing Thoughts

The Deco X90 delivers lightning fast WiFi speed and class-leading signal coverage. TP-Link refreshed the hardware with a more powerful WiFi radio and a faster CPU. This resulted in a greatly enhanced WiFi signal coverage especially when connected to the mesh node.

The best part of the Deco X90 is the class-leading software refinement and optimization. I also give credit to TP-Link for great attention to security with the new HomeShield Pro advanced security suite and WPA3 WiFi security option supported right out of the box.

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appreciate the review.
may i know how’s Deco X90 mesh performance compared to Asus XT8?

Hi, I’m planning mesh system for 3 storey house. The floor layout as below. unifi modem placed in closed small storey with tnb db box as unifi cable prepull inside the small stored room. Deco m9 plus setup 1. Ground floor. Main unit inside closed store room 2. 1st floor. Satellite put in middle open family living area. 3. 2nd floor. Satellite put in middle open area. Thinking whether if deco m9 plus 3 pack is good for the setup. Scare coverage in ground floor to 1st floor Satellite signal no good. Should add 1 more unit in middle of… Read more »

I just notice normally deco x90 sell in 2 packs. Single pack seems no stock.
If mix deco x90 and other deco model. (Wireless backhaul)
Any recommendations?

Hi, I’m on Maxis home fibre 800mbps. Download speed achieved with Maxis’ Kaon Wi-FI6 router is only 500 mbps using 5GHz wifi. This router is connected to Deco E4R whose 5Ghz wifi is even lower at between 400 – 450 mbps. My house is a double storey of which built-up is 2,500 sqft. My question is should i replace the Kaon router and Deco E4R with 2 units of X90 whereby the first x90 linked to modem takes over as router whilst the 2nd X90 will be placed at the walkway upstairs to replace the role of the 2nd unit… Read more »

Does this trump the Asus ZenWifi XT8 in terms of coverage area and speed…?

Hey Blacktubi. I bought this and it is very good mesh wifi. Good signal for my semi d 5000sqft house. Thank you

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