Best Router for Tomato

Discussion in 'Tomato Firmware' started by mealto, Jun 14, 2014.

  1. mealto

    mealto LI Guru Member

    Alright, if you were to buy a router today that can take on heavy use (small business), what router would it be and why?

    I have only had experience with WRT54GL and E4200 V1 and both have served me well, especially with various Tomato versions running.
  2. EOC_Jason

    EOC_Jason Networkin' Nut Member

    It would depend on which branch of Tomato you want to run... Different ones support different routers...
  3. walshlink

    walshlink Networkin' Nut Member

    I am guessing the ASUS RT-N66U or Netgear R7000 are probably the better routers right now and developers seem to be interested in developing for it...I think there are fairly stable firmwares out for both now. WRT1900AC seems to be getting attention, but it is Marvell chipset and developing for it will take time.
  4. BikeHelmet

    BikeHelmet Addicted to LI Member

    I don't know about the best, but the E900 is the cheapest Tomato router. Those things have specs comparable to a WRT54GL, but are Wireless N. I've found them in Canada for as little as $14... replaced an aging WRT54GL for someone and got just slightly more wireless distance, despite it using internal antennas.

    If I were borging an apartment building or something with access points, I'd probably use cheap units like that. Lots of devices are single antenna, so it's not like they benefit from MIMO setups.

    My main router is currently an Asus RT-N16, but as I need more NVRAM space, I'm considering upgrading. The RT-N66U or RT-AC66U look like possibilities.

  5. Connor McCaffrey

    Connor McCaffrey Networkin' Nut Member

    i agree with RT-N66U and RT-AC66U as there tomato FW are more mature vs R7000, RT-68U, RT-AC56 which are still being worked on and have issues.

    if you want throughput and good 5Ghz performance go RT-AC66U

    if you want large range and better 2.4GHz go with the RT-N66U as most of your clients will probably be 2.4GHz
  6. mealto

    mealto LI Guru Member

    I must not be the only one who thinks prices for higher end routers are just a tad high these days. $200+ for a decent router. Just cannot justify it. That can buy a lot of food for the family.
  7. Grimson

    Grimson Networkin' Nut Member

    Well I can remember times when even basic routers did cost around $500, so I can't agree.
  8. gfunkdave

    gfunkdave LI Guru Member

    The RT-N66u works just fine in 5GHz for me - do you experience problems with it?

    I'd also point out that the RT-N10P, which runs Shibby, works well with Shibby's fork and can often be found for $15-20.
  9. EOC_Jason

    EOC_Jason Networkin' Nut Member

    The price comes from being the "latest & greatest" technology along with licensing fees, much like the top-end Intel processors.

    You also have to look at what all features the router can do, usually more features = more $$$ (for the retail market)...

    Most internet providers now offer a modem/router combo, which suites most people's needs. The ones that want above and beyond are the same ones willing to shell out the $200+ for a 3rd party router.

    I'm quite happy with my WNR3500L that I bought off eBay for $20 shipped... works great running Toastman.
  10. BikeHelmet

    BikeHelmet Addicted to LI Member

    The profit margins on these things are insane, though, especially compared to most lower end routers. WRT1900AC MSRP is $280, retailer cost is around $200. Cisco wants a nice profit margin on these, so I'd guess that BOM is $80 or 90 at most. Total costs $120 or so to get it into countries and on store shelves.

    If Google were making it and pricing it like the Nexus 7, the WRT1900AC would go for $124.99 with free shipping. At that price I would own one already.

  11. Connor McCaffrey

    Connor McCaffrey Networkin' Nut Member

    i think its hilarious people spend $50 month + on there internet bill then think $200 on a router is alot..........

    example. my internet bill is $85+ tax (12% in bc canada) so its $95/m

    $200 is not much.........
  12. BikeHelmet

    BikeHelmet Addicted to LI Member

    Mine is $29.95/mo for 15/1mbit, in BC Canada. What plan are you on? I'm assuming a higher up Shaw plan based on the price.

    In other parts of the world internet is cheaper. You can get 100mbit for $30/mo and 1gbit for $80-120/mo.

  13. mealto

    mealto LI Guru Member

    Funny replies :) Had a laugh and a shake of the head at the same time.
    Ole Juul likes this.
  14. zorkmta

    zorkmta Network Guru Member

    IMHO, Asus Rt-N66u is a good choise relation features vs price.
  15. kamaaina

    kamaaina Serious Server Member

    I grabbed one of the refurbished AC66U from Newegg/Ebay for $89 and it's running fine. When you are not in a rush these N66U/R or AC66U/R can be found for ~$100 and do the trick. Plenty of FW options with Merlin, Tomato and DD-WRT, what's not to like.

    Shibbys Anon project can show you popular routers running Shibbys Tomato version, which might indicate good boxes for his version of Tomato as well as what might be supported for a while. Then match the popular boxes there with reviews from Amazon etc. to see if these are good routers in general.
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