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TP-Link Archer AX21 router review

574 + 1201 Mbps
IEEE 802.11a/b/g/n/ac/ax
Broadcom BCM6755 @ 1.5 GHz
256 MB / 128 MB

TP-Link introduced the Archer AX21 router in 2020. It is powered by Broadcom BCM6755 @ 1.5 GHz chipset, 256 MB of RAM, and 128 MB of flash memory.

Want to know if the Archer AX21 is a game-changer? Stay tuned!

Table of Contents

  • TP-Link Archer AX21 specifications
    • Body, dimensions, weight
    • System, chipset, RAM, flash, power supply
    • Network, protocols, WAN and LAN ports
    • Wireless, antennas, speed, security
    • Connectivity
    • Administration, user interface, login information
  • Verdict, Pros and Cons
  • Photos

Our personal experiences and opinions form the basis of this article. We aimed to share insights on a topic, and we hoped others would find it useful and inspirational. The specs below rely on official manufacturer data, but we also consider user reviews. If you noticed any mistakes or missing details about the TP-Link Archer AX21, please let us know. Furthermore, we strive to deliver a thorough and precise overview.

TP-Link Archer AX21 / AX21

The Archer AX21 is a popular router model from TP-Link. Many users have given it positive reviews. The USB connectors on the router add versatility to your network. They enable file sharing, printer sharing, and other USB functions. TP-Link is a well-established brand and has a significant market presence globally.

TP-Link Archer AX21 specifications

BrandTP-Link
NameArcher AX21
TypeAX21
Rating
Rated 4/5 based on 1170 user votes.
Launch2020

Body

Dimensions260.2 x 135 x 38.6 mm
Weight558 g

If you have limited space, like in a small apartment or office, the dimensions can determine if it can fit there. The weight of a router can matter in some situations. But, it is usually not as crucial as other factors. These factors include features and compatibility.

TP-Link Archer AX21 (AX21) / 3

System

ChipsetBroadcom BCM6755 @ 1.5 GHz
RAM256 MB
Flash128 MB
OSTP-Link
Power supply12 V / 1.5 A

The Broadcom BCM6755 @ 1.5 GHz CPU is key. It, along with factors like RAM and firmware, decides how well the router works. The amount of RAM in a router can affect its performance. It also affects its capacity to handle concurrent operations and traffic. The 128 MB flash memory in the router serves as the storage medium for the router's firmware. Upgrading router firmware has become simple and user-friendly. The TP-Link provides the right power supply. It is 12 V / 1.5 A, this matches the router's voltage needs.

TP-Link Archer AX21 (AX21) / 2

Network

ProtocolsIPv4
IPv6
LAN ports4 x 10/100/1000 Mbps
WAN ports1 x 10/100/1000 Mbps
Mobile networkno
VPN supportPPTP
OpenVPN

Like many modern routers, the Archer AX21 supports many network standards too. Most networking equipment, like routers and switches, supports IPv4. The Archer AX21 router is also compatible with IPv6. IPv6 has a much bigger address space. It also offers many enhancements and improvements over IPv4. This router has Gigabit Ethernet LAN ports. They provide data transfer speeds of up to 1000 Mbps (1 Gbps) over Ethernet connections.

This router ensures that you can use fast internet from your ISP fully. OpenVPN is a full-featured SSL VPN solution. It uses OSI layer 2 or 3. It extends secure networks using SSL/TLS, an industry standard. The PPTP is an older VPN protocol. It was widely used in the past.

TP-Link Archer AX21 (AX21) / 1

Wireless

Antennas4 x 4 dBi
fixed
2.4 GHzyes
5 GHzyes
6 GHzno
60 GHzno
StandardsIEEE 802.11a/b/g/n/ac/ax
ClassAX1800
Speed574 + 1201 Mbps
Transmit power30 dBm
SecurityWEP
WPA
WPA2
WPS
Guest networkyes

The 4 x 4 dBi, fixed antennas allow sending and getting many data streams at once. This boosts overall throughput and improves Wi-Fi performance. Many IoT devices, smart home devices, and older Wi-Fi devices mainly use the 2.4 GHz band. This router operates on both the 2.4GHz and 5GHz frequency bands. It lets you connect devices to the best band for their needs. The Archer AX21 AX router typically offers improved range and coverage.

Real-world Archer AX21 router speeds are lower than its theoretical maximum speed. WEP was the first Wi-Fi security protocol. But it is now seen as weak and easy to hack. The introduction of WPA2 (Wi-Fi Protected Access 2) improved upon WEP. It provides stronger security. WPS (Wi-Fi Protected Setup) provides an easy method. It connects devices to a Wi-Fi network.

Connectivity

USB ports1 x USB 2.0
Print serveryes
File serveryes

The USB 2 port has a maximum theoretical data transfer rate of 480 megabits per second (Mbps). A USB print server adds print functionality. You can manage settings, watch queues, and control access from one place. The Archer AX21 router lets you schedule backups. You can back up to the connected USB storage device.

Administration

Default IP192.168.0.1
Default usernameadmin
Default passwordadmin

If you can't log in to your TP-Link router's setup panel, try resetting it. A reset can help you troubleshoot. It is highly recommended to change the default password of your Archer AX21 router. Do this after the initial setup.

Pros and Cons

Every router, including this TP-Link one, has its good sides and not-so-good sides. Let's take a closer look at both to get a full understanding of what this router can do. We'll talk about what it does well and also where it could use some improvements. Just remember, this is just what I think, and you might see things differently.

Pros

  • generous memory
  • adequate flash
  • IPv6 capable
  • high-speed LAN port
  • high-speed WAN port
  • supports OpenVPN
  • works on 5 GHz band
  • 802.11ax certified
  • decent Wi-Fi performance
  • WPS friendly
  • USB 2 compatible
  • printserver functionality
  • fileserver operation

Cons

  • incompatible with WPA3

TP-Link Archer AX21 photos

TP-Link Archer AX21 / AX21 photo
TP-Link Archer AX21 / AX21 photo
TP-Link Archer AX21 / AX21 photo
TP-Link Archer AX21 / AX21 photo
TP-Link Archer AX21 / AX21

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Robert Miller
For over 15 years, I've immersed myself in the world of networking devices as a tech aficionado. I've dedicated myself to thoroughly testing and analyzing routers and other networking gear. I aim to provide thorough reviews. They will give you the knowledge needed to improve your network.
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