April 3 2020

Linksys AC1200 Review: Powerful Budget Gaming Router


Key features

Wi-Fi Technology AC1200 Dual-Band (N300 + AC867)
Dual-Bands (2.4 and 5 GHz)
Ports 1x Fast Ethernet WAN, 4 x Fast Ethernet LAN
Encryption up to 128-bit
Size 12 x 170 x 33 mm (4.41 x 6.69 x 1.30 in)

Pros & Cons

  • Downplayed, sleek-looking design
  • Very good features for the price range
  • Good coverage on both bands
  • No mounting brackets included
  • Antennas cannot be removed

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A solid router is a must-have if you are technologically-savvy enough (and a lot of people today are) that you see the benefit of a strong dual-band wireless connection in your house.

If you have been looking for an affordable router that is easy to install and use and also supports dual-band without hitches, then Linksys AC1200 might just scratch your itch. It offers just a little more than you would expect at this price level while facing some strong competition out there. Stick around and see what we thought about it.

This version of the AC1200 offers solid dual-band service, with 2.4 and 5 GHz on offer, as well as 1 Fast Ethernet WAN port and 4 Fast Ethernet LAN ports. It also boasts a single-core processor that keeps everything under control and two antennas in the back. They are adjustable, however, they cannot be removed.

You won’t find any gigabit ports here, though, however, that would be a little too much to expect at this price range.

Linksys AC1200 Performance

First of all, if you are approaching this from the perspective of the owner of some 8 gigabit LAN ports beasts – you will be disappointed. However, looking at its place in the food chain, AC1200 has a lot going for it as well. This is especially true for the media prioritization feature which allows you to give priority to certain devices.

Linksys AC1200 Wireless Router Set

This means that if you are doing some heavy online gaming on your PC or console, while someone else is watching 4k content on the (other) TV, you can give priority to yourself so that the gaming does not suffer – and vice versa.

Signal strength is strong, definitely strong enough for a small home, with drops of about 40% in speed at 30 feet for 2.4 GHz band and around 20% for the 5GHz band. Long story short, enough to go around.

Oh, and let’s not forget the guest WiFi option, which allows you to have different passwords for your guests, without the need to share your password with all your visitors, or customers, in case you are running a business.

Linksys AC1200 Design

The design of the router is very simple and sleek, with rounded edges. The two antennas are non-removable, but they can be adjusted.

Linksys AC1200 Wireless Router Front

The router itself is only 1.5 by 7.8 by 6.8 inches in size, which means you will easily find a place for it. No mounting brackets with this model, although that would be a great option with this unobtrusive design, for some reason Linksys did not think of adding it to the product

Linksys AC1200 Pricing & Alternative

Looking at Linksys AC1200, in its price range there exist similar models from other manufacturers as well – depending on what your needs are. For example, Netgear R6120 can cover a lot of the same ground as the Linksys model.

On the other hand, if you are looking for something more hardcore, look no further than Asus AC5300 and its 8 gigabit LAN ports and 8 antennas – it bears a hefty price, but if you can find a use for it, it will be worth it.

Oh, and it’s a mesh router, so you can stick one or two of these together in the same home and have seamless internet as you walk around!

Linksys AC1200 FAQs

Is Linksys AC1200 a good router?

For the price that it holds – it is a very good router, offering a lot that even higher-priced ones do not. It has a sleek design and just enough options for everyday use.

How do I install my Linksys AC1200 router?

The router is relatively easy to install and it also comes with a solid software suite, where you can set up a lot of the settings.

Linksys AC1200 Wireless Router Back View

You can download this from the web, but Linksys also comes with an install CD, which is a bit behind the times, but someone might find it useful.

What is AC1200?

Ac1200 is actually a designation of how much bandwidth a router has at its disposal. In this case, it is 1,200 Mbps, while the numbers can go much higher.

How do I reset my Linksys AC1200?

There are two ways to reset your Linksys router. The first one is the hardware button you can find on the side of the product itself. The other way is to do the software reset through the Linksys software that you have installed on your computer, under Router Settings.

Is AC1200 enough for gaming?

For a single user, it is more than enough. However, if there are several people using the router and taking up bandwidth, whether by watching movies or TV shows in high-resolution or playing video-games online, you might think about something with a bit more oomph when it comes to bandwidth.

Linksys AC1200: Final Verdict

There aren’t many ways to say this: Linksys AC1200 is a good product with a good price for what it offers. And that is what usually matters the most. It looks good and it works great in most everyday scenarios.

Of course, if your needs are higher and you are looking for more bang for the buck, we have a handy list where you can look up the best router for gaming.

Performance: ⭐⭐⭐⭐

If you are looking for a router that will not fail, either in 2.4 GHz or 5 GHz bands, you’ve come to the right place. As long as you do not stray far from it, you will be getting your money’s worth. No gigabit LAN though, so that’s a drawback, although expected at this level.

Design: ⭐⭐⭐⭐

If only this model came with detachable antennas, it would get a clean 5 out 5 from us. It is elegant, sleek, but still doesn’t look boring as part of your gaming setup.

Price: ⭐⭐⭐⭐

Depending on whether you manage to find it at a discount, the price can really be incredible for this product. The times when you had to be satisfied with whatever measly router you got from your ISP.

Overall: ⭐⭐⭐⭐

A great little product, punching just above its weight in almost all categories. More features and speed is always good (and you can check Netgear Nighthawk R6700 for that), but this one will satisfy your average customer without a single issue.


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Bojan Djordjevic