ASRock G10 Gaming Router Review
Date: December 28, 2015
Product Name: G10
Part Number: G10
Warranty: 2 Years
When searching for an optimal lag-free solution for online gaming, buyers typically go towards wired internet solutions since they tend to offer the best bandwidth and connection uptime. However, with the advent of 5GHz Wireless AC, WiFi has come all that much closer to achieving what gamers need and companies have begun to take advantage of that fact with new so-called “gaming grade” routers. While products from ASUS, Netgear and Linksys are the most visible in today’s market, ASRock is now introducing their own unique option: the G10 Gaming Router.
ASRock is a company known for their outside the box thinking and value-oriented mindset. Before many other companies jumped on the whole gaming motherboard bandwagon ASRock was there. When DDR3 was expensive but DDR2 was cheap, ASRock was there with innovative solutions that granted the ability to use older memory on newer systems. Basically if there is a company known for thinking so far outside the box that you can no longer even see the box it is ASRock. One thing they are not known for is their networking solutions which is why the G10 may feel like a breath of fresh air.
Today’s wireless router marketplace is not exactly bereft of excellent choices so in order to not just get noticed, but actually make a dent in the likes of Linksys, D-Link, and ASUS’ bottom-line ASRock has pulled out all the stops and included a lot of nifty features usually not seen in a consumer-grade router.
These included features run the gamut from IR learning abilities which allow you to control your TV via a free Android App, to an included removable H2R device. Before we get too far here the H2R does require a bit of explaining since it could be a serious value-add for some users. It is both a 2×2 travel router and a Miracast-capable dongle so it can either be used as a portable multi user mini-router when on the road, or to push audio/video to a TV from an Android / iOS device. This is certainly not a feature found with most routers but it is the router itself that will make or break ASRock’s first serious foray into 802.11AC marketplace.
ASRock are obviously fully aware of their lack of street-cred in this segment and and as such (on paper at least) the G10 does seem built to offer a laundry list of capabilities. First and foremost, the G10 is what is commonly referred to as “Wave 2” MU-MIMO router since it has all the latest features that the second generation of 802.11AC technology brings to the table. That means optimizations for simultaneous streaming and gaming on multiple devices so every user receives an adequate allocation of the router’s resources. There’s also advanced beamforming technology which optimizes performance and enhances overall coverage metrics.
Past the more static features this is a 4×4 capable router and happens to be one of the fastest non-Xstream routers available today. The G10 is rated for AC2600 speeds, which breaks down as 1733Mbps on the 5GHz 802.11AC band and a whopping 800Mbps on the 2.4GHz 802.11N band. Yes that is indeed correct and not a typo; this thing is indeed able to break the 600Mbps mark on the still widely used 802.11N band.
The fun doesn’t stop here either. The G10 has a massive 512MB of RAM and a dual core 1.4GHz Qualcomm Atheros IPQ8064 SoC, dual USB 3.0 ports for homebrew NAS abilities and eight internal antennas for true 2 x 4:4 abilities. On the surface at least there is certainly a lot to like about the G10. However, what really is impressive and sure to grab people’s attention is the asking price. At $250 this router may not be the least expensive around but for a AC2600 class device with a ton of add-on features, it may be one of the better values to hit retail shelves recently.