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ASUS RT-AC68U (AC1900) Review

While this router did alright, it seemed a little expensive relative to its results
asus rt-ac68u (ac1900) wifi router review
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Price:  $200 List
Manufacturer:   ASUS
By David Wise and Austin Palmer  ⋅  Mar 25, 2022
57
OVERALL
SCORE
  • Features - 25% 6.0
  • Ease of Use - 20% 9.0
  • 2.4 GHz Throughput - 20% 4.0
  • 5 GHz Throughput - 20% 4.0
  • Range - 15% 5.0

Our Verdict

While the ASUS RT-AC68U (AC1900) is one of the easier-to-use models that we have tested, its performance in all of our other tests didn't distinguish it from the best WiFi routers. This router didn't score particularly poorly but delivered a middle-of-the-road performance in most of our tests — comparable to many other routers that we reviewed. Unfortunately, many of those other routers also cost a bit less than this model, so we would recommend going with one of those alternatives or spending a bit more for a top-of-the-line model to upgrade your home or office network.
REASONS TO BUY
Super easy to use
Decent set of features
REASONS TO AVOID
Below average throughput
Somewhat expensive
Editor's Note: We updated this review for the ASUS RT-AC68U (AC1900) on March 25, 2022, with an unbiased assessment of value and suggestions for directly comparable products.

Our Analysis and Test Results

To pick which model is the best, we surveyed all the most popular and well-received models, then bought the ones that showed the most promise to test side-by-side. We rated each router in five weighted rating metrics, with the ASUS RT-AC68U's results described below.

Performance Comparison


asus rt-ac68u (ac1900) wifi router review - the rt-ac68u did quite well, but couldn't quite claim an award.
The RT-AC68U did quite well, but couldn't quite claim an award.
Credit: Jenna Ammerman

Features


Responsible for a quarter of the overall score, we started off our testing process by comparing and rating all the different features and functions that these products have. We awarded points if each model has beamforming capabilities and the ability to handle MU-MIMO traffic, as well as if you can wirelessly reset the router. We also compared the number of USB and LAN ports each router has and awarded some bonus points if you can turn the LED indicator lights off. The ASUS RT-AC68U did decently well.

asus rt-ac68u (ac1900) wifi router review - this asus router has 4 lan ports and 2 usb ports, one 2.0 and one 3.0.
This ASUS router has 4 LAN ports and 2 USB ports, one 2.0 and one 3.0.
Credit: Jenna Ammerman

This router has the average number of connections — four LAN Gigabit ports and a pair of USB ports, one with the 2.0 standard and one with the 3.0 standard. We did award the ASUS RT-AC68U some final points for being able to be reset wirelessly and for allowing you to turn off the LED indicator lights if you find the network traffic indicator lights to be distracting.

This router does have beamforming abilities, letting you concentrate the signal strength in areas where you need it the most. Still, it does lack MU-MIMO ("Multi-User, Multiple-Input, Multiple-Output") technology, making this a somewhat poor choice if you have tons of different internet-connected devices in your household.

asus rt-ac68u (ac1900) wifi router review - the led indicator lights can be turned on or off to match your...
The LED indicator lights can be turned on or off to match your preference.
Credit: Jenna Ammerman

Ease of Use


Following our assessment of each router's different features, we evaluated and scored how intuitive and easy each router is to us. The ASUS RT-AC68U performed exceptionally well in this test, with one of the highest scores among top-tier WiFi routers.

asus rt-ac68u (ac1900) wifi router review - this router is incredibly easy to set up and use.
This router is incredibly easy to set up and use.
Credit: Jenna Ammerman

Right out of the box, this is one of the easiest wireless routers to set up. The hardest part is manually entering the IP address from the manual into a browser. Once you get to the settings page, it's super easy to set an SSID and password and set up an admin login. The interface is extremely intuitive and one of our favorites. However, we were a little bummed that we immediately had to update the router's firmware, even if we were automatically prompted.

asus rt-ac68u (ac1900) wifi router review - in addition to blocking by content, you can also schedule controls...
In addition to blocking by content, you can also schedule controls by time for different devices, letting you limit internet access after bedtime for kids and teens.
Credit: Austin Palmer

It's also easy to set up more advanced functions, such as parental controls or Quality of Service (QoS). The content blockers are super easy to set up. We particularly liked that you can restrict pages both by the content or time, allowing you to do your best to prevent kids and teens from viewing inappropriate content or set rules like no internet after bedtime.

asus rt-ac68u (ac1900) wifi router review - we liked that you can restrict access to inappropriate content by...
We liked that you can restrict access to inappropriate content by device with this router.
Credit: Austin Palmer

Additionally, you can impose these rules on specific devices, so not every device will have the internet cut off at certain times or censored. You can enable either adaptive, traditional, or bandwidth limiter QoS, prioritizing which types of internet usage you want to prioritize and whether you want to throttle back certain types of devices. The interface is also really easy to understand and use.

asus rt-ac68u (ac1900) wifi router review - you have a handful of different qos options with this router.
You have a handful of different QoS options with this router.
Credit: Austin Palmer

2.4 GHz. Throughput


Next, we tested out the data throughput capabilities of each router, both on their 2.4 GHz. and 5 GHz. networks. Each set of throughput tests account for 20% of the overall score of each router, and scores are based on averaging multiple trials of an iPerf3 test with various distances and obstructions between the router and our test computer. The ASUS RT-AC68U didn't do amazingly well in the 2.4 GHz. range.

The ASUS RT-AC68U did about average in the short distance throughput tests, having an average throughput of 45 Mbits/s in the line-of-sight test and 44 Mbit/s in the obstructed version. These tests had about 10' between the router and computer.

We had the router and the computer separated by about 35' for our medium distance test. The ASUS RT-AC68U did a little worse, having a slower than average throughput. It averaged 29 Mbits/s in the unobstructed test and 23 Mbit/s in the test with obstacles between the router and laptop.

We only did an obstructed version of our long-distance test, which separated each device by around 70'. The ASUS RT-AC68U had an average of 12.7 Mbit/s — far slower than some of the other tested products.

asus rt-ac68u (ac1900) wifi router review - the 2.4 ghz. throughput failed to impress.
The 2.4 GHz. throughput failed to impress.
Credit: Austin Palmer

5 GHz. Throughput


The ASUS RT-AC68U did about the same in our 5 GHz. metric. This router got off to a bit of a rough start in terms of network connectivity, doing slightly below average in the short distance line of sight test and even worse in the obstructed version.

This router did the same in the medium-distance test with interference, only doing slightly worse than average. But it did exceptionally poorly in the line of sight test at a moderate distance, having some of the worst results of the entire group. It finished this test with a surprisingly strong performance at 5 GHz. long-distance test, doing well above average.

asus rt-ac68u (ac1900) wifi router review - the 5 ghz. throughput of the asus also didn't really impress us.
The 5 GHz. throughput of the ASUS also didn't really impress us.
Credit: Austin Palmer

Range


For our final metric, we ranked each router on its effective range. We did this by seeing at what distance away from the router we began to experience YouTube buffering and playback issues on our test laptop. We separated the router and computer by around 144' before encountering severe issues, which is average for these products.

Should You Buy the ASUS RT-AC68U (AC1900)?


The ASUS RT-AC68U is a decent router — it's not amazing, but it isn't awful either.

This router might be a solid choice if you are shopping within its price range and want a product that has an intuitive settings interface and is easy to use. But we don't recommend it, favoring the slightly cheaper models that perform similarly.

What Other WiFi Routers Should You Consider?


The ASUS RT-AC68U (AC1900) isn't a great value, as a few cheaper products performed about the same. Notably, the NetGear Nighthawk AC1750 (R6700v2) — our choice for overall value — offers similar features but higher performance in terms of throughput. If you're willing to spend a little more, the award-winning ASUS RT-AC88U Wireless-AC3100 is an upgrade across the board.

David Wise and Austin Palmer
 
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