Acer Predator Connect W6 Review: Style Over Substance?

The Acer Predator Connect W6 gaming router aims to combine the aggressive aesthetics of gaming hardware with the advanced technology of Wi-Fi 6E routers. Priced at $299.99, it targets mid-range router buyers, especially gamers.

Nov 29, 2023 - 04:19
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Acer Predator Connect W6 Review: Style Over Substance?

Solid but Not Spectacular

  • Balancing Simplicity and Performance: The Predator Connect W6 offers an easy setup and pleasing design but falls short in delivering the best performance for its price.

Pros and Cons

Advantages of the Predator Connect W6

  • User-Friendly Setup: The router can be quickly set up without the need for a dedicated app.
  • Aesthetic Design: It features an attractive interface and a visually appealing smartphone app.
  • Good Short-Distance Performance: Delivers commendable performance at closer ranges.

Disadvantages

  • Inconsistent Wi-Fi Performance: Overall performance is solid but not outstanding.
  • Limited by Paid Features: Some key features are locked behind a subscription service.
  • Lack of Advanced Configurability: Offers less customization than many traditional routers.
  • Gamer Design May Not Appeal to All: The bright LED and gaming-centric design might be off-putting for some users.

Also Check The iPhone 14 and Apple AR / VR devices will support Wi-Fi 6E

Design and Aesthetics

Gaming-Inspired Look

  • Aggressive Styling: The router features a matte black finish, large vents, hard edges, and a pulsing RGB-LED, typical of gaming routers.
  • Adjustable Antennas: Comes with six antennas, each capable of rotating and pivoting for optimal signal distribution.

Practical Yet Bold

  • Tower Design with Good Ventilation: The router's design balances functionality with an attention-grabbing look.
  • LED Customization: The bright LED light can be turned off, catering to different user preferences.

Specifications

Key Technical Details

  • Wi-Fi 6E Support: Offers the latest in Wi-Fi technology with a quad-core 2.0 GHz processor.
  • High-Speed Connectivity: Features a 2.5 Gbps Ethernet port and supports theoretical speeds of 600 Mbps to 4.8 Gbps across different bands.
  • Versatile Ports: Includes a mix of 2.5 GbE and Gigabit Ethernet ports, along with a USB-A 3.0 port.

Setting Up the Router

Easy and Accessible Installation

  • Straightforward Out-of-the-Box Functionality: The W6 is operational immediately upon connection, with simple web browser-based setup.
  • App-Based Management: Offers an alternative setup and management through the Predator Connect app, although it requires an Acer account.

Features and Functionality

Gamer-Focused Quality of Service

  • QoS with Gaming Optimization: The router includes a quality-of-service feature with a setting optimized for Nvidia's GeForce Now streaming service.
  • Mixed Results in Real-World Usage: The GeForce Now optimization did not significantly impact gaming performance in testing.

Performance Evaluation

Testing the Wi-Fi Capabilities

  • Tri-Band Performance: Offers a 2.4-GHz, 5-GHz, and 6-GHz band, with support for MU-MIMO, beamforming, and 160MHz channel bandwidth.
  • Connectivity Options: Wired connectivity includes a 2.5 Gbps Ethernet port for modems and four Gigabit Ethernet ports.

Real-World Testing Scenario

  • Testing Methodology: Wi-Fi performance was tested in a single-family home using the iPerf benchmark with two laptops.

Conclusion: A Stylish but Pricey Choice

Suitable for Gamers with Specific Needs

  • Attractive but Limited: The Predator Connect W6 suits users who prioritize easy setup and gaming aesthetics but may disappoint those seeking top-tier performance.
  • Weighing Cost Against Performance: Its high price and lack of advanced features make it less appealing compared to other routers in the same price range.