Geek Review: TP-Link Deco Voice X20 – AX1800 Mesh Wi-Fi 6 System

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Slow internet speed can be an endless source of frustration, especially when movies buffer in the middle of an action scene and when your character unintentionally wraps around a map in a live game. line. A smooth online experience is even harder to achieve when the network is shared by an entire family, each with their own bag of bandwidth-consuming devices.

The introduction of the more adaptable Wi-Fi 6 standard has helped improve data flow and, when combined with a mesh system, brings smooth traffic throughout the home. Wi-Fi 6 is the new standard, offering not only faster Wi-Fi compared to Wi-Fi 5, but also better data streaming efficiency to avoid data congestion. This is especially important in a world where a hybrid work environment has become more common, where a single Wi-Fi network may need to support streaming movies in the living room on Netflix and streaming music in another room, while someone is playing. online, while another is stuck in a corner having a Zoom meeting. Even though Singapore has the fastest fixed broadband connection speed in the world, a fast network still needs the right hardware to support it.

In comes the TP-Link Deco Voice X20, a dual-band mesh Wi-Fi 6 system to try and make some noise, in that it has nodes that double as smart speakers. Design-wise, each Deco Voice X20 node is a white cylinder, similar to other Deco models. The Deco Voice X20 has a red stand, which presumably contributes to the sound quality of the 5W speaker. There are four buttons on the top of the Node, two for volume control, one for mute the microphone, and one for waking up Alexa. The design is sleek and each node has a radius of 105mm and a height of 170mm, making it easy to find discreet places for them around the house.

With a maximum speed of 1,201 Mbps for the 5 GHz band and 574 Mbps for the 2.4 GHz band, the Deco Voice X20 is not fast by the latest Wi-Fi 6 standards and can be considered a mesh system. entry-level for those looking to upgrade their Wi-Fi 5 system while saving space by having the nodes also function as smart speakers. The ease of setup lends credence to this idea, as each node has two Gigabit Ethernet ports on the back, and once one of the nodes is plugged into the modem and a power source, users only have ‘to download the Deco app.

After creating an account or logging in, users can name their network. The app will then find the Deco Voice X20 via Bluetooth. Other nodes and smart devices can then be added by tapping the + in the top right corner of the app. It helps that the Deco app is really well designed, so smart actions and shortcuts can be added, with options to blacklist devices and change the network password.

For parents, there’s also the ability to monitor individual device data usage, and for those looking to have parental control features, you can set up each household member with a profile, set time allowances line and even block certain sites. Unfortunately, these features are not free and are available as part of the HomeShield Pro subscription service for a fee of S$8.98 per month. It’s not a necessary feature, but for those who want that extra control, it’s definitely worth considering. It’s a level of convenience that should be standard for Wi-Fi systems in the future.

With regard to performance, based on the results of Speedtest.net, a laptop linked to the Deco Voice X20 achieves an average download speed of between 360 and 450 Mbps and an average upload speed of between 160 and 300 Mbps. On an iPhone 12 Pro Max, the average download speed was between 400 and 500 Mbps. As it’s a Wi-Fi 6 system, the mesh network is able to handle more devices on the network at once, although we’re struggling to test TP-Link’s claims that the Deco Voice X20 can manage more than 150 devices. We tested the connection speed while simultaneously playing 4K YouTube videos on four devices, and the results averaged download speeds of between 320 and 400 Mbps on the laptop. Sure, that’s barely pushing the electronic smorgasbord of 150 devices, but it does simulate system performance in the context of a nuclear family of four.

When the devices are one piece away from a node, the download speed of the laptop and smartphone reaches 260-340 Mbps and 330-440 Mbps respectively. It’s not blazingly fast, but it’s certainly a comfortable and respectable connection speed, and more than enough for most use cases. Of course, for those who want even more comprehensive coverage, either because there are too many walls between rooms or because they have a spacious home, a 3-pack may be a better option over the 3-pack. of 2.

The two-in-one nature of nodes also leverages the spread of the Internet of Things (IoT), where households are increasingly introducing smart devices that will each consume bandwidth. The built-in Alexa voice assistant also helps households more easily manage their range of smart devices.

The four-microphone array in each node picks up voice commands well and can be activated easily without shouting, even when a room is far away with the doors open. Also, while the 5W speaker isn’t anything to write home about, it’s adequate and clear enough. The less picky can even be content to use the Deco Voice X20 to stream their playlists from Spotify. There’s nothing to complain about here when it comes to functionality. While the speaker isn’t impressive, it’s designed to serve primarily as an IoT control center, and in that respect it’s great.

A Set of 2 retail at $336, and is able to provide consistent coverage to an average 4-room apartment in Singapore compared to wireless routers. It’s the Wi-Fi system of choice for those who have many smart devices in the home and are looking to upgrade to the new Wi-Fi 6 standard while being convenient and easy to set up and manage. .

GEEK REVIEW NOTE

Summary

The Deco Voice X20 is the Wi-Fi system of choice for those who have many smart devices in the home and are looking to upgrade to the new Wi-Fi 6 standard while being convenient and simple to set up and use. management. The built-in Alexa voice assistant is a great feature, and so the system should be considered by those who want a space-saving two-in-one device.

  • Aesthetic – 8/10
  • Manufacturing quality – 8.5/10
  • Performance – 9/10
  • Value – 8/10


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