Both products have one USB 2.0 port and one USB 3.0. Windows filecopy tests were run using the standard NAS testbed connected to a router Gigabit LAN port and the standard USB drive formatted in FAT32 and NTFS [NAS test details]. Tests were run connected with the USB drive connected to both the USB 2.0 and USB 3.0 ports.
Table 1 summarizes USB 2.0 performance and includes each product's predecessor. You can see a big bump in performance for both products over the earlier models. The R7000 is more consistent for read and write and both FAT32 and NTFS. However, it maintains consistency with the R6300 in that FAT32 write is still the slowest.
|NETGEAR R7000||NETGEAR R6300||ASUS RT-AC68U||ASUS RT-AC66U|
|Processor||Broadcom BCM4709A||Broadcom BCM4706||Broadcom BCM4708A||Broadcom BCM4706|
|FAT32 Write (MBytes/s)||24.8||8.6||11.8||9.0|
|FAT32 Read (MBytes/s)||27.8||10.2||24.0||9.9|
|NTFS Write (MBytes/s)||27.9||11.3||23.7||13.5|
|NTFS Read (MBytes/s)||27.9||10.3||24.2||9.4|
Table 1: File copy throughput - USB 2.0 (MBytes/sec)
Switching to USB 3.0 results, we see some unprecedented results for both FAT32 and NTFS reads in Table 2. The Nighthawk gets within spittin' distance of 60 MB/s for both formats, which is better than some SoC-based standalone NASes! Note that I had to switch to AC1200 products for comparison because the R6200 and RT-AC66U have only USB 2.0 ports.
|NETGEAR R7000||NETGEAR R6250||ASUS RT-AC68U||ASUS RT-AC56U|
|Processor||Broadcom BCM4709A||Broadcom BCM47081A||Broadcom BCM4708A||Broadcom BCM4708A|
|FAT32 Write (MBytes/s)||33.4||15.9||11.7*||19.8|
|FAT32 Read (MBytes/s)||57.4||25.6||21.6*||47.2|
|NTFS Write (MBytes/s)||36.8||17.6||23.6*||35.6|
|NTFS Read (MBytes/s)||57.7||25.7||24.3*||52.2|
Table 2: File copy throughput - USB 3.0 (MBytes/sec)
* = "Reducing USB 3.0 interference" setting enabled
You'll note that the ASUS doesn't do so well in this test. That's because I had to enable the Reducing USB 3.0 interference setting, which appears to slow the USB 3.0 port to USB 2.0 speeds. I tried multiple times to get the tests to run, but each time the router share would disconnect while copying the first 1 GB VOB file in the test folder. Maybe ASUS should put some shielding on the USB 3.0 connector...
Routing throughput was measured using our standard router test process. Table 3 summarizes the results and includes the NETGEAR R6300 and ASUS RT-AC66U for comparison.
All four routers have more routing throughput than most anyone can really use. But the best of the group is the R7000, with the highest throughput we've measured yet for all tests except LAN to WAN. That benchmark's top position is occupied by TP-LINK's Archer C7, which noses out the R7000 by an insignificant 1.2 Mbps at 942.9 Mbps. This is well within the margin of error of our test process, however.
Don't assign any significence to the difference in the Maximum Simultaneous Connection results, except for the R6300. The 30,000+ sessions shown all represent results obtained when the test bumped into an in-use Windows port, which ended the test.
|Test Description||NETGEAR R7000||NETGEAR R6300||ASUS RT-AC68U||ASUS RT-AC66U|
|WAN - LAN||931.4 Mbps||783 Mbps||754.5 Mbps||836 Mbps|
|LAN - WAN||941.7 Mbps||829 Mbps||824.6 Mbps||839 Mbps|
|Total Simultaneous||1378.3 Mbps||808 Mbps||1226.8 Mbps||819 Mbps|
|Maximum Simultaneous Connections||38,793||4,096||33, 263||30,069|
Table 3: Routing throughput
The IxChariot unidirectional composite plot for the R7000 shows rock-solid Gigabit wire-speed throughput in both directions.
NETGEAR R7000 routing throughput unidirectional summary
The R7000 simultaneous up/downlink benchmark plot shows even distribution between up and downlink, even when variation rises after the 10 second mark.
NETGEAR R7000 routing throughput bidirectional summary
Turning to the RT-AC68U, throughput is again pretty steady, but with more variation than the R7000 and lower values in both directions.
ASUS RT-AC68U routing throughput unidirectional summary
The AC68U simultaneous up/downlink benchmark plot seems to show the uplink (LAN to WAN) direction favored over downlink (WAN to LAN).
ASUS RT-AC68U routing throughput bidirectional summary
The overall results seem to indicate that the R7000 is getting enough of its more powerful processor's attention—at least when storage and wireless aren't also being hammered on.