TP-Link recently announced two new devices designed to deliver fast and reliable Wi-Fi 6 connectivity in a sleek and ultra-thin form factor. The Archer Air R5 is a dual-band Wi-Fi 6 router that can reach speeds of up to 3Gbps, while the Archer Air E5 is a Wi-Fi 6 range extender that can boost the signal and coverage of any compatible router.
Both devices are thinner than most smartphones and tablets (let alone Wi-Fi routers) and can be easily mounted on the wall with adhesives or brackets. In this article, we will share our initial assessment of the devices. Let’s go.
Inside the Box
Archer Air R5 router
- Archer Air R5 unit
- USB-C charger
- Ethernet cable
- Extra 3M adhesive strips
- Plastic bracket with screws
- Small level
- Resetting pin
The Archer Air E5 extender has the same set of accessories in its package, save for the ethernet cable.
The Archer Air R5 and Archer Air E5 have a minimalist design that blends well with any modern home or office interior. They have a pure white shell with rounded corners and smooth lines, creating a simple and clean appearance.
The front panel has an LED and WPS 2-in-1 button for device status and allows for easy setup. The back panel has a padded design that enhances both heat dissipation and aesthetics. The Archer Air R5 has a USB-C power port between a WAN and LAN port at the bottom panel. While the Air E5 only has a USB-C power port.
The Archer Air R5 is very compact and lightweight, measuring just 210×148×10.8 mm, which is around the size of a small tablet or e-reader. The Archer Air E5, on the other hand, has similar dimensions but it is thinner at just 8 mm.
The devices also come with two 3M adhesives on the back and plastic bracket accessories that enable flexible installation options. This way, you can optimize the placement of the devices for better Wi-Fi performance and save electrical socket space.
The Archer Air R5 and Archer Air E5 are not only thin but also powerful. They support the latest Wi-Fi 6 standard, which offers faster speeds, lower latency, higher capacity, and improved security compared to previous generations of Wi-Fi.
The Archer Air R5 is a dual-band router that can deliver up to 2402 Mbps on the 5GHz band and 574 Mbps on the 2.4GHz band, ensuring smoother streaming and faster downloads for multiple devices. As a range extender, the Archer Air E5 can amplify the signal and coverage of any EasyMesh-compatible router, creating a whole home seamless mesh network.
Both devices also have smart antennas that use intelligent algorithms to auto-detect your devices’ locations and adjust the antennas’ direction for all-round stable signals. They have beamforming technology that detects the location of devices and concentrates Wi-Fi towards them for stronger connections. Moreover, they have four powerful FEMs (front-end modules) that provide maximum Wi-Fi performance and reduce interference.
They also come with TP-Link HomeShield, which is an enhanced security feature that defends against cyber threats. It provides real-time network protection, parental controls, quality of service, antivirus, and more.
You can access both the router and extender, as well as manage all your network settings remotely, via the TP-Link Tether app (which is available from the Play Store or App Store) or web interface.
Setup and Installation
The easiest way to install the Archer Air R5 and E5 is to attach them to a wall using the 3M adhesive strips. This way, you don’t have to drill holes and use the screws that come with the plastic bracket. It also saves you some space.
But before you stick them to the wall, make sure you measure everything carefully and check the Wi-Fi signal and strength. The chargers of both devices are quite short, so you need to consider this when you choose where to put the router and extender. The adhesive strips are very strong, so once they’re on the wall, they’re not coming off.
To setup the Archer Air R5 and E5, the best way is to use a smartphone and the TP-Link Tether app.
First, plug in the Archer Air R5 and connect your device to its Wi-Fi network. The Wi-Fi name and password are on a sticker paper included in the package. Next, launch the Tether app and follow the instructions on the screen. You can also change the Wi-Fi name and password to your liking in the app.
Second, use the Tether app to link the Archer Air E5 extender to your router. Use the OneMesh option to setup a whole-home Wi-Fi network. You can also use the app’s Location Assistant to find an optimal place for your extender, depending on the signal quality.
The app also let’s you share your Wi-Fi connection via QR-code, which your friends and family can quickly scan to connect.
The Archer Air R5 and E5 provide enough coverage for your small to medium sized home. We tried the devices and they worked well on both floors of our house. Our house has a floor area of 60 sqm for each floor. We had no issues with the Wi-Fi connection as we moved around. But keep in mind that it may vary from house to house, depending on the layout and materials of your house.
However, there is a speed difference when you use the Air E5 extender. We had the extender on the first floor and the router on the second floor. We measured the speed with a speed test app. The speed was slower on the first floor than on the second floor. It was not very noticeable, because our home connection (PLDT Home Fiber) was fast , but it might be more obvious with slower connections.
If you want to extend your Wi-Fi coverage at home, the Archer Air R5 and E5 are great options. You can also add more OneMesh compatible devices to expand your network easily.
The Archer Air R5 and E5 are not only fast and reliable, but also stylish and slim. They support Wi-Fi 6 technology, which gives you faster and smoother Wi-Fi connections. And they have a sleek and ultra-thin design, allowing them to easily blend in any modern home or office.
They also have smart features that optimize Wi-Fi performance and security. Moreover, they are easy to set up and manage with the TP-Link Tether app.
The Archer Air Series are available in TP-Link’s physical store in SM North EDSA, or online platforms like Lazada and Shopee. The Archer Air R5 costs P6,590, while the Archer Air E5 costs P5,990.
For more information about TP-Link’s products and services, visit their website or follow them on Facebook, X, and YouTube.