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Standard User DGR1
(newbie) Sat 06-Jun-20 10:58:38
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TP-Link MR600 vs Huawei B535


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I'm currently testing both the MR600 and B535 to decide which to keep. I'm on Three and the best signals are in my loft. I live in rural Somerset, a few miles from the tower that both routers pick up, and tend not to suffer from too much contention.

I can't make any comment on their wi-fi performance as I disable this and use access points connected via ethernet.

MR600 is running the beta firmware v1_1.1.0_0.9.1 available from the TP-Link community site that allows band selection. I have attached the bunny ears that came with it - signal quality suffers without.

B535 is running 10.0.2.1 firmware out of the box. It seems to have a better signal without bunny ears.

The MR600 ran faultlessly for over week while I worked from home - video conferences never dropped. The kids can game on both PS4 with voice chat and the Nintendo Switch which is notoriously fussy given the P2P nature of its online service. I watched Solo on Disney+ which it says is 4K and YouTube usually defaults to 720p.

Having had the B535 for a few days, it has matched the MR600 for stability, but I will run it through next week for a proper test. Should probably watch Rogue One to continue the Star Wars comparison.

To answer queries from @barker04 in another thread.

1) Speeds compare
Very similar. Both achieve maximum of 60 down and 30 up, more typically 30-40 down and 20 up. I would say that the MR600 appears slightly more consistent on speeds, but given all the factors involved I'd say there's no difference.
2) How stability / signal strength compares
Both achieve 4G+ on bands 3+20. Forcing any other combination using the MR600 interface or LTE H-Monitor proves pointless. SNR hovers around 10, RSRQ around -9, RSRP around -100 - not great!
3) How UI compares
The MR600 is more user friendly, though ultimately doesn't given you much more if you're comfortable using LTE H-Monitor for the B535. I really appreciate that you can reserve loads of IP addresses on the MR600 (I'm up to 24 with no idea of the limit), whereas the B535 only allows 8 I believe. Of course, most people won't be bothered as DHCP usually handles things fine.
4) If you are running the new firmware to allow band fixing? As I want to do this
Yes, and it seems to work, although you can't guarantee results as it's the router requesting a band from the tower. The MR600 is faultless in always securing 4G+ on 3+20, whereas the B535 seems much more picky - often getting just 4G on band 20 with really slow speeds. Using LTE H-Monitor I have fixed 3+20 which has secured 4G+ so far.
5) Which you would recommend
I genuinely can't answer this yet. I would be happy with either. Interesting the number of issues with both you see reported on various forums. I understand the MR600 beta firmware includes a number of other fixes for issues that probably caused problems for early adopters back in 2019. I don't think I've seen the page stalling on the B535 that many people reported early in lockdown - but time will tell.

What this has mostly taught me is that trying to get fast, stable 4G can be incredibly tricky. Moving routers or their aerials by a tiny amount can have a significant impact. If I place the B535 at a slightly different angle and reboot it, I get 4G only on band 20, hopeless speeds, and am on the verge of returning it! But then move it a little using signal readings to check placement, lock 3+20 with LTE H-Monitor, and it's a great router.

For sure the MR600 has been far less fussy about placement.

And FWIW, the design of the MR600 itself is better. Can be laid flat or mounted on a wall thanks to the placement of its ports. The B535 with cables sticking out the back won't allow that.

Happy to answer any other questions. I don't use advanced features, so won't be able to comment on any of those I'm afraid.
Standard User DGR1
(newbie) Sat 06-Jun-20 11:19:58
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Re: TP-Link MR600 vs Huawei B535


[re: DGR1] [link to this post]
 
Forgot to say that you can see the UI for MR600 here - MR600 emulator

It's the stock firmware, so doesn't show you the band selection additions.
Standard User buggerlugs
(member) Sat 06-Jun-20 12:16:44
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Re: TP-Link MR600 vs Huawei B535


[re: DGR1] [link to this post]
 
Interestingly the MR600 is cat 6 and the B535 is cat 7, so realistically (depending on antenna quality) the B535 "should" provide a better, faster, connection.


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Standard User jchamier
(eat-sleep-adslguide) Sat 06-Jun-20 20:13:41
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Re: TP-Link MR600 vs Huawei B535


[re: buggerlugs] [link to this post]
 
In reply to a post by buggerlugs:
Interestingly the MR600 is cat 6 and the B535 is cat 7, so realistically (depending on antenna quality) the B535 "should" provide a better, faster, connection.

Cat 7 over 6 only affects uplink, and only if your operator supports it on the mast. In Phone terms both are quite old now.

Cat 6 - 300down, 50up - theoretical
Cat 7 - 300down, 100up - theoretical

Neither 6 or 7 support 64QAM or any of the higher modes in Cat12 or higher.

A useful reference:
https://www.rfwireless-world.com/Terminology/LTE-Adv...

20 years of broadband connectivity since 1999 trial - Live BQM

Edited by jchamier (Sat 06-Jun-20 20:13:52)

Standard User barker04
(member) Sat 06-Jun-20 21:48:08
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Re: TP-Link MR600 vs Huawei B535


[re: DGR1] [link to this post]
 
Thanks - How does the wifi compare? Seen reports of the MR600 being flaky on wifi.
Standard User DGR1
(newbie) Sun 07-Jun-20 06:48:39
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Re: TP-Link MR600 vs Huawei B535


[re: barker04] [link to this post]
 
In reply to a post by barker04:
Thanks - How does the wifi compare? Seen reports of the MR600 being flaky on wifi.

Sorry, can’t really answer this as I have wi-fi disabled. Old house, thick walls, and the router is in the loft. No choice but to use access points (TP-Link EAP225s) although a mesh system would be another alternative. A while back I decided to treat 4G and wi-fi separately without the expectation of a one-box solution.

But because you asked, I temporarily enabled the MR600’s wi-fi and I have to say performance is impressive. Comfortably covers the top floor and even some of the ground floor. It’s shown me the impact of using APs. Running a speed test while connected directly to the router showed reduced latency and a top download speed of 80 Mbps!
Standard User DGR1
(newbie) Sun 07-Jun-20 06:53:45
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Re: TP-Link MR600 vs Huawei B535


[re: jchamier] [link to this post]
 
In reply to a post by jchamier:
In reply to a post by buggerlugs:
Interestingly the MR600 is cat 6 and the B535 is cat 7, so realistically (depending on antenna quality) the B535 "should" provide a better, faster, connection.

Cat 7 over 6 only affects uplink, and only if your operator supports it on the mast.

Thanks v much for clarifying that. I never knew 👍
Standard User barker04
(member) Sun 07-Jun-20 07:26:58
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Re: TP-Link MR600 vs Huawei B535


[re: jchamier] [link to this post]
 
Interesting thanks .

Is it really the case that most masts are 64QAM now ? The ee mast I want to connect to is the only one locally with anything other than just band 20 on it . Therefore if I can get even faster speeds with ee from another router that’s not too expensive I would be very interested !
Standard User barker04
(member) Sun 07-Jun-20 07:45:35
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Re: TP-Link MR600 vs Huawei B535


[re: DGR1] [link to this post]
 
Great thanks again for checking for me much appreciated.

In the settings I wondered if you can see if it does the 64QAM mentioned ? I think the mast I might connect to supports this - although have no way to know for sure before I buy this so keen to get a router that supports this if I can .
Standard User DGR1
(newbie) Sun 07-Jun-20 08:46:27
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Re: TP-Link MR600 vs Huawei B535


[re: barker04] [link to this post]
 
In reply to a post by barker04:
n the settings I wondered if you can see if it does the 64QAM mentioned ? I think the mast I might connect to supports this - although have no way to know for sure before I buy this so keen to get a router that supports this if I can .

There’s nothing visible about 64QAM and I had to look up what it is. On the MR600 forum, someone has identified the actual modem inside the box, and the specs state up to 64QAM. But I can’t validate that in any way.

FWIW the MR600 doesn’t report tower or cell IDs like the B535 which makes problem determination trickier.

While I’m here, I should add that both routers work fine with Sonos multi room audio and Philips Hue wi-fi bulbs. Just writing this makes my house sound like a technology hub!
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