After releasing a new WRT router for IT professionals and developers, Linksys has unleashed the tri-band AC3200 EA9200 and the dual-band AC2400 E8350 for households that have piles of devices requiring a solid Wi-Fi connection.
The EA9200, which retails at $299, delivers two Wi-Fi bands at 5 GHz and one at 2.4 GHz that Linksys says are capable of moving up to 3.2 Gbps when totaling individual bandwidths. The 4 x 4 E8350, which has a suggested price of $249, dishes out four streams of data that combine to move up to 2.3 Gbps.
Both the EA9200 and E8350 are driving by dual-core processors, the former's clocked at 1 Ghz and the latter's clock paced at 1.4 GHz. They both employ Beamforming technology to target devices, focusing the wireless signals and optimizing transfer rates.
"Beamforming also reduces interference from other devices for stronger Wi-Fi connections," says Linksys. It increases the efficiency of your network and expands its range, enabling you to enjoy high-bandwidth activities like streaming and gaming with ease."
As cloud routers, the EA9200 and the E8350 can be connected to external storage devices to serve as cloud servers for family members. Users can stream content from connected hard drives at home or anywhere else in the world where they can hop onto an Internet connection.
One of the primary differences between the two is the embedded software. The EA series EA9200 is a smart router compatible with third-party apps, while the E8350 accepts only firmware updates from Linksys.
Another difference is their antenna counts, which may not be that big of a deal for people who've figured out exactly how to position their routers. The more robust and slightly costlier EA9200 features three antennas on its outside and three on its inside, while the formidable E8350 is equipped with four external antennas.
After significant time in the hands of reviewers and enduring a 24-hour transfer test without dropping a connection, the E8350 has shown it's a standout among its peers of high-end consumer routers.
"The E8350 has great performance on the 5-Ghz frequency band, and like the Netgear and Asus, its powerful specs deliver fast storage performance when coupled with an external hard drive. On the 2.4-Ghz band, though, it's slower, mostly because it reuses the old interface of the E series, which favors compatibility over performance" states the reviewer.