Netgear Orbi Pro AC3000 Tri-band mesh Wi-Fi system 3-pack (SRK60B03) review

Netgear Orbi Pro AC3000 Tri-band mesh Wi-Fi system 3-pack (SRK60B03) review
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Designed with MU-MIMO, Smart Connect for one WiFi name and Beamforming technologies. Supports WPA2 wireless security protocols.  Includes Guest WiFi access, DoS, Firewall, VPN and more. Orbi Pro delivers business-class seamless, high-speed WiFi that is affordable and easy to install, without added infrastructure and deployment costs. It’s the perfect WiFi solution for small businesses, cafes, retail, small offices, and more. The dedicated wireless connection between the Orbi router and satellites enables seamless 4K streaming, gaming, and device connectivity everywhere in your home. Orbi also creates a single Wi-Fi name to maintain uninterrupted connections as you move from room to room or floor to floor. Get more in Netgear Orbi Pro AC3000 Tri-band mesh Wi-Fi system 3-pack (SRK60B03) review.

In the box

  • 1 x Orbi Pro Router (SRR60)
  • 2 x Orbi Pro Satellites (SRS60)
  • 3 x wall mounts with screws
  • 3 x ceiling mounts with screws
  • 1 x 2m Ethernet cable
  • 3 x 12V / 3.5A power adapters
  • Quick start guide

Pros & Cons – Netgear Orbi Pro AC3000 Tri-band mesh Wi-Fi system 3-pack (SRK60B03)

Pros

  • Perfect Wi-Fi coverage and seamless mesh function
  • Decent shoice of settings and parameters
  • Three independent Wi-Fi networks
  • Cloud- and mobile app-free
  • Every setting can be changed using the web interface
  • Both components are robust and stable
  • Gigabit Ethernet ports (3x on the router, 4x on the satellite)
  • All settings can be backed up and restored from a file
  • Built-in OpenVPN server, very simple to set up
  • Dynamic DNS support (for no-ip.com)
  • One free host for no-ip.com (to be used with dynamic DNS)
  • Bandwidth setting for each network (as of firmware version 2.4.0.114)

Cons

  • The guest network is always open
  • Long boot time (~3 min)
  • Expensive
  • Access control with “Block new devices by default” bug
  • No USB ports for external drives to turn it into a NAS

Price

Depending on promotion, price may vary from $489 – $700 approx. Those who are unsure of their spatial requirements can buy additional satellite access points for £260 (around $354), and the router can work with three of them in total, adding an extra 2,500 square feet of coverage for each one. Each node can service up to 40 wireless client devices simultaneously, and a router-plus-three-satellite setup could cover a 10,000 ft office. 

Specifications – Netgear Orbi Pro AC3000 Tri-band mesh Wi-Fi system 3-pack (SRK60B03)

Blazing Fast 3-Gigabit AC Wi-Fi
Reliable and high-performance AC3000 Wi-Fi for up to 7500 sq.ft. with optimized simultaneous connections for up to 40 users (MU-MIMO).

Wire-free Installation:
No need to run cables. Power up the Orbi Pro Satellite and it will automatically connect to the Orbi Pro Router.

Location Flexibility:
New industrial design for desktop, wall or ceiling placement.

Separate Guest User Access:
Orbi Pro comes with 3 predefined networks with traffic isolation for network owner / administrator, employees and customers. And includes a customizable guest portal.

Specification

Dimension 6.80″ x 3.30″ x 9.70″
Weight 2.06 lbs.
Antenna 6 x high-performance antennas with high-power amplifiers
Other Ports: 4 x 10/100/1000 Mbps Gigabit Ethernet ports, 1 x WAN & 3 x LAN for Router, 4 x LAN for Satellite

Wi-Fi Standards
Radio 1: IEEE 802.11b/g/n 2.4 GHz-256 QAM support
Radio 2: IEEE 802.11a/n/ac 5 GHz-256 QAM support
Radio 3: IEEE 802.11a/n/ac 5 GHz-256 QAM support
Wireless Data Rates Up to 3.0Gbps
Frequency Band 2.4 GHz / 5 GHz

Security
WPA / WPA2-PSK support
3 x wireless networks
Administrative devices
Employee devices
Guest devices with Captive Portal Challenge

Guest Wi-Fi Network is easy to setup for secure Internet access

Guest network devices are denied access to Administrative and Employee networks and any devices on those networks

Netgear Orbi Pro AC3000 Tri-band mesh Wi-Fi system 3-pack (SRK60B03) video review

Netgear Orbi Pro AC3000 Tri-band mesh Wi-Fi system 3-pack (SRK60B03) review

Size

These second-generation Orbi modules have a distinctive shape that is vaguely reminiscent of a high-end vase. They stand nearly 10-inches (25cm) high and can be placed on any flat surface, or be wall-mounted using an elaborate bracket and plate assembly.

Hardware

Orbi Pro builds off the consumer Orbi platform with both its looks and hardware with added refinement. For hardware we have the Qualcomm IPQ4019, four cores at 717Mhz paired with 512MB of memory and large 4GB flash memory, this also has a 2×2 Radio that offers 400Mbps on the 2.4GHz band and 867Mbps on the 5GHz. There is a separate QCA9984 4×4 Radio that is used for backhaul with a peak rate of 1733Mbps. On the wired side, the Orbi Por offers 1 WAN and 3 LAN ports for the router and four LAN for the satellite, all wired ports are gigabit.

SRK60 is essentially a combination of a router (the central controlling device) Orbi SRR60 and one or two satellites type SRS60.

According to Netgear’s specs’:

  • The router + satellite (SRK60) kit covers an area up to 5,000 sq ft (464 m²),
  • The router + two satellites (SRK60B03) kit can service an area up to 7,500 sq ft (700 m²).

I’ve chosen for the first option as it’d supposedly be well enough for all three floors and the garden.

Router & Tri-band

A starter Netgear Orbi Pro Business Wireless System comes with one main router unit with a gray-colored top, and one satellite unit with a blue-colored top. Extra satellites can be added as and when you need them. As well as offering AC3000 Tri-Band Wi-Fi, each unit also includes four Ethernet gigabit ports (three ports and one WAN on the main unit) for hardwiring desktops, printers or any other kit that needs an Ethernet connection.

Mounting

The mounting system hides the wired networking ports on the rear of both module types, with three (and the WAN) on the router, and four on the satellite(s).

One interesting variation with the Orbi hardware design is that the antennas are internally mounted, so they can’t be easily positioned to enhance connectivity. However, the whole device can be mounted vertically or horizontally, as required, with that positional scope potentially enhancing the number of floors each node can cover.

PoE

Netgear Orbi Pro is compatible with PoE network switches. PoE stands for Power over Ethernet and it is a way of providing the power for wireless access points using an Ethernet cable. With PoE you don’t need a conventional power supply to power the access points, although Netgear does provide power supplies for users who don’t have or want to use PoE or who want to use a totally wireless system.

Setup

the Orbi Pro can be set up as a standalone wireless mesh network which means all the Orbi satellite access points on the network use the same SSID (that’s the Wi-Fi network name that appears when you’re looking to get online). This means that the device you’re using to access the Internet ­– whether it’s a laptop, tablet or smartphone – will lock onto the strongest wireless signal in the Orbi Pro network and gives you the freedom to roam around an office at will. As you walk around, the device wireless signal will automatically handover your device to whichever Orbi Pro satellite is sending it the strongest signal. This means that no matter where you go, you’ll get a strong and fast Wi-Fi signal, providing you install enough satellite units. The Orbi Pro units function as a mesh network rather than a daisy-chain of access points which delivers faster wireless speeds.

Netgear Orbi Pro AC3000 Tri-band mesh Wi-Fi system 3-pack (SRK60B03) performance review

Netgear built this equipment with an 8×8 MIMO capability, leaving dual 2.4GHz and 5GHz channels entirely to service directly connected clients, and four 5GHz channels are left exclusively for the node routing backbone. 

That’s 1.7 GB/s for the backbone, divided by however many client devices are using the system. 

Testing the Orbi Pro, we started with wired throughput. I was to reach 919Mbps, on par with what we typically see from 802.11ac solutions.

Wireless performance reached 99Mbps on the 2.4GHz band and 500Mbps on the 5GHz band. Testing the backhaul, I was able to top out around 516Mbps.

With Mobile Throughput, using my iPhoneXR, we reached a peak of 499Mbps on the 5GHz band. We were unable to test the 2.4GHz band due to smart connect.

Performance of the Orbi Pro gave us ~90mbps in 2.4GHz, and ~500mbps with 5GHz and overall wired performance topped out at 919MBps with a 516MBps backhaul at a test distance of ~25-30ft. This is typical performance for an AC1300 class solution.

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