Better for Tomato: RT-N66U or RT-AC66U?

Discussion in 'Tomato Firmware' started by ilovejedd, Sep 27, 2013.


Which is better for running Tomato?

  1. Asus RT-N66U

  2. Asus RT-AC66U

  1. ilovejedd

    ilovejedd LI Guru Member

    I already have an Asus RT-N66U which acts as gateway and access point. Problem with that is it's located in the corner of our apartment where the cable drop is so signal in my room (opposite corner) is relatively weak. I'm planning on disabling wireless on it and just adding another access point in a more centralized location.

    My primary requirement for a router purchase is Tomato support and at the time I bought my router, Tomato hasn't been ported for the AC66U yet so the N66U won by default. Now the choice isn't quite as obvious. From what I can tell, hardware-wise the two are fairly identical except for 802.11ac and 128MB flash on the AC66U. I don't think I'll need 128MB flash (unless Tomato suddenly gets bloated or something). 802.11ac support is nice and I'll probably be able to benefit from that when I buy a new tablet but it's not what I'd consider necessary. Question is which runs more stable with Tomato? I'd rather go for the more stable device than the one with all the bells and whistles. I can always get an AC access point later when I actually have AC devices. If they're equally stable right now, I'd get the AC66U.

  2. CowMix

    CowMix Addicted to LI Member

    I had to make this decision recently after by n16 died, I chose the ac because it was only $15 more than the n66u. I figured I would future proof my house. Tomato builds on ac66u are almost near perfect for me and getting better everyday.
  3. Victek

    Victek Network Guru Member

    RT-N66U is mature running Tomato, RT-AC66U needs some improvements in Tomato code but I have no doubt that will reach same level as for RT-N66U. Both units are fine but remember, if you wonder to exploit AC wireless you must buy additional wireless adapter ...

    ;) (neutral answer... but 1 point for RT-AC68U ? where is?....)
    Last edited: Sep 27, 2013
  4. eahm

    eahm LI Guru Member

    Don't know what to vote, I've never tried the AC66U but... yep, can't wait for the AC68U :)
  5. ilovejedd

    ilovejedd LI Guru Member

    Some new smartphones and tablets are coming out with 802.11ac support and I tend to buy those yearly anyhow. ;)

    But AC68U is ARM-based, right? Wouldn't it take quite a bit of time for Tomato to be ported over? Actually, the AC68U is part of the reason I was thinking of just getting another N66U right now. I could get the N66U and put the $30-40 savings into the AC68U maybe 6 months later when Tomato support has been added.

    Then again, right now, it will only be used as an access point. I already have an existing N66U that does all the heavy lifting. How bad could the stock Asus firmware be if I'm only using it as access point? Besides, Merlin already supports the AC56U so I reckon Merlin will be available for the AC68U fairly quickly after its release. While I do prefer Tomato's interface over Merlin, I can make do with the latter while a Tomato port is in development.

    Thanks for all the feedback so far!
    Last edited: Sep 27, 2013
  6. Victek

    Victek Network Guru Member

    Well, I don't see the advantages of 802.11ac in one smartphone ...
    Merlin works patching and improving the official ASUS sources, it's expected when he included RT-AC56U. He's doing good job and supporting Tomato also.
    The porting of Tomato to ARM it's not easy but RT-AC56U will work with Tomato then adding RT-AC68U it's question of hours, both share same architecture, few differences in components (just CPU and wireless chipset afaik).
    And I agree with you about letting RT-AC68U cool down the price, same as for RT-AC56U. In last year high end models increased their price over 50% compared with 2010-2011-2012 models and most of users started few months ago buying 802.11n devices .....
  7. ilovejedd

    ilovejedd LI Guru Member

    Ever since Google encouraged manufacturers to drop USB mass storage in favor of buggy MTP, I've been using wireless FTP to transfer multi-gigabyte folders to/from smartphones and tablets. Before the advent of smartphones and tablets, I never actually cared much for wifi speeds. My trusty old Linksys WRT54GL (still running Tomato RAF 1.25 ;)) served my needs quite well. If I needed to copy something quickly to my laptop, I just used a flash drive or wired it to the switch. I still use microSD cards whenever possible, unfortunately, the Nexus line doesn't have a microSD card slot and USB OTG is a pain.
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