Netgear is launching its first WiFi router that can be used high-speed 802.11ad wireless networks as well as 802.11ac.

The Netgear Nighthawk X10 also has a 1.7 GHz quad-core processor, support for 10Gigabit wired networks, and a built-in Plex Media server, which allows you to stream media from connected storage without turning on a PC.

Those features will cost you though: with a $500 price tag, the Nighthawk X10 is one of the most expensive consumer-oriented routers on the market.


In fact, that price makes TP-Link’s Talon AD7200 router look like a bargain, at $323.

Like TP-Link’s router, the Netgear Nighthawk X10 offers combined speeds up to 7.2 Gbps… if you add up the theoretical max speeds of all of the device’s wireless features:

  • 4600 Mbps @ 60 GHz 802.11ad
  • 1733 Mbps @ 5 GHz 802.11ac
  • 800 Mbps @ 2.4 GHz 802.11ac

Actualy performance will likely vary depending on a bunch of hard-to-predict environmental variables.

The system has 6 Gigabit Ethernet ports, two USB 3.0 ports, and a few interesting software components. Not only can you plug a flash drive, hard drive, or SSD into a USB port to use the Plex media server feature, but there’s also an option to backup data from connected storage to Amazon Cloud Drive. Customers will get 6 months of free unlimited Amazon Cloud Drive storage with the purchase of a Nighthawk X10.

Overall, the router has an interesting feature set — especially if you’re looking for a router than can also act as a media server and cloud backup device. But the $500 asking price seems pretty high at a time when Netgear and other companies are also working to improve in-home wireless networking by offering multi-device router systems that sell for less than that.

Most of those systems don’t support 802.11ad WiFi yet though.


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8 replies on “Netgear’s new router is its fastest (and most expensive) yet”

  1. I like the feature set, but I don’t like the single point of failure. At that price, I’d rather separate things out so I can upgrade components piecemeal. If I find the WiFi or the server pieces lacking, it’s already a sunk cost in an all in one unit.

    But I have a problem trusting consumer wireless routers. They’re just not that reliable. Having worked with enterprise gear for a while now, the next home network I build will definitely include high reliability equipment. I mean, when a $200 router shuts down when I have a few friends over to LAN some Starcraft Brood War, you get frustrated. If a $500 router/server were to fail on me in any way, I would be extremely disappointed. But maybe they did do everything right, in which case the reviews will reflect it.

    1. I am with you on the single point of failure. I run two inexpensive routers that connect to the modem over gigabit ethernet. That only connects phones and tablets… everything else is wired.
      Never had any issues ever with a wired connection on consumer equipment.

    2. Huh, never had mine shut down under similar circumstances but then it’s just a wifi AP. Pushed a lot of data over it and never had it fail, possibly because it’s not doing any routing or providing VPNs and whatnot.

      1. I’ve found that dedicated APs tend to be more reliable. Combination devices/ISRs/WiFi router-servers, at least at the consumer level, haven’t had a good record with me. What kind of AP and router are you using?

        1. Ah, mine’s an all in one router/wifi AP but I told it to act as an AP only. Linksys WRT1900ACS running stock firmware (openwrt experience was poor a few months back) as the AP and pfsense as a router. My only problems are ones caused by the metal in odd places causing signal to be worse (but not bad, 20MB/s down from 80 normally).

          Uptime’s something on the order of months for the AP, only a couple of months for pfsense since I had to reboot the esxi host it’s sat on to add hardware.

          1. Makes sense. I’ve always heard good things about pfsense, haven’t tried it myself yet. I don’t know what it is about these consumer WiFi routers, but as soon as they get LANning, they fail on me. Even the expensive one my dad got will just drop randomly, stop broadcasting WiFi completely, with only a couple phones and a computers doing web browsing.

            And then I go to a client site, and have 100+ devices all playing Youtube videos on 1 AP. No drops, hundreds more devices elsewhere, everything smooth. I love enterprise equipment.

          2. expensive != good. In fact I’ve found very little correlation between price and quality. Picked up units for $20 that’re extremely reliable, had low end enterprise stuff for $500+ be rubbish. Heck the WRT was rubbish under openwrt because the drivers weren’t ready yet, so it’s only really good with stock firmware which is probably an old linux kernel and heavily modified driver.

            All I can say is good luck and google everything since you can’t get the cat back in the bag once you’ve hit “buy” on something.

  2. The idea of a plex serving router is really appealing … but not at this price.

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