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Routers that work well with SmartLink

Mike-VA3MW Administrator, FlexRadio Employee, Community Manager, Super Elmer, Moderator admin

I would like people to share the Router they are using that works well with SmartLink.

For me, my perfect router can do the following:

  • Show bandwidth from each client so you can watch which computer is using all your bandwidth
  • Can be tuned for a variety of issues such as bufferbloat or can handle bufferbloat issues

My favourite 2 routers are:

  • IQ Router - available on Amazon in the US
  • pfSense - An advanced commercial router - the NetGate 1100 or 2100. I use the 3100.
  • pfSense build your own is also a great choice as you can build it for free on your own hardware.

Please feel free to share what has worked for you so far. Or, one that you had problems with.



  • Christopher Platt
    Christopher Platt Member ✭✭

    Microtik RB411 - complex to set up - but great where internet is recevied via the mobile (cell) phone system Needs PCMIA modem card. About US$100 works on 12-30V DC

  • Alan
    Alan Member ✭✭✭✭

    Mike. My routers. I think your pfSense has similar features.

    Shack PepLink Balance 30 Pro. https://www.peplink.com/products/balance-30-pro/

    Remote: PepLink BR1. https://www.peplink.com/products/max-single-cellular-br1-router/


    • Able to use three WAN sources, two carrier grade, Cellular, and StarLink. One with Public IP, but low bandwidth and higher latency.
    • Able to load balance using all three WAN sources.

    When remote, I have two ways to connect to the Flex:

    • Smart SDR, using the single available Public IP WAN at the Balance 30 (shack)
    • Hardware VPN, (Pep Link VPN) using all three WAN balanced connections using the Pep Link BR1 at the remote site. Remote site must be on a public IP. Level Two Bridge enabled.

    Alan. WA9WUD

  • Neil D Friedman N3DF
    Neil D Friedman N3DF Member ✭✭✭✭

    The standard router that Spectrum delivered with cable tv and internet seems to work fine with my 6600M.

  • Mark Aaker K6UFO
    Mark Aaker K6UFO Member ✭✭

    I operate 100% remotely. I had trouble with intermittent dropouts at the shack when I had the old cable modem (Arris) and another router (TP-Link) in the path to the radio. I bought a new cable modem compatible with Comcast (Motorola MG8725) that also has router and WiFi built-in. It has a nice, simple interface for configuring it's router and WiFi settings. It has 4 LAN ports, as many as most separate routers. The Flexradio, shack PC and amplifier all get their own port, the last LAN port goes to an ethernet switch that has five other secondary devices. So far working well. I access with VPN or SmartLink.  Mark K6UFO

  • Stan VA7NF
    Stan VA7NF Member ✭✭✭

    My problem with many network switches is the internal network standard (cat-5 unbalanced and cat-6 balanced) and a metal case (or not), resulting in the following requirement:

    Must be low EMI and support STP (shielded) cable. Are any of these proven low EMI?

    My switch is inside the grab-and-go kit and shares the same ground as the radio, front-end filters, battery, and charging PS. Most internally generated noise comes first from the switch, then the externally filtered PS.

  • Alan
    Alan Member ✭✭✭✭

    I use a MOXA industrial switch. Metal Case, with ground tab. Accepts shielded Cat cable. EMI rated.

    Alan. WA9WUD

  • David Decoons, wo2x
    David Decoons, wo2x Member, Super Elmer Moderator

    Arris SN8200 DOCSIS 3.1 modem for Internet only and TM1602G for phone. The 1602G also has 25 meg Internet on as default so have a backup connection and allows easy testing of remote operation without being remote

    Router is an Eero 6 Pro mesh. Full speed tri band router system that uses one 5 GHz channel as backhaul. allows port forwarding, DHCP reservation, QOS. Covers house and deck with full speed WiFi connection. Each Eero has two gigabit Ethernet connections allowing a gig switch to be connected for hardwired devices.

    Probably better available but it works great for me.


    Dave wo2x

  • KD0RC
    KD0RC Member, Super Elmer Moderator

    Hi Mike, I have a ZyXEL model C1100Z. My ISP is CenturyLink over twisted pair (ADSL, I am pretty sure).

    Everything is set up uPNP, and has never given me any problems. I use a NetGear GS108 switch that comes with me on Field Day. Works great as well.

    While my router has WiFi that I use for other things, my Flex 6400, PC with SmartSDR and homebrew TeensyMaestro all plug directly into the switch. I typically get 1 - 2 ms latency (as measured by SmartSDR) with very few dropped packets (0.00% - 0.01%).

    I think that my setup is what Flex radios are designed for - total plug and play. I did zero configuration of any kind to get things working. Being curious, I did, of course, look at all my router settings once I got everything hooked up and running... I see that all my gear (ham and non-ham) has reserved addresses, but no static IP anywhere. I did not set the reservations; the router took care of all that for me.

  • Ken Wells
    Ken Wells Community Manager admin

    I have been using my ASUS RT-AC66U router for several years with no problems with SmartLink.

    I DID need to adjust the QoS / Bandwidth manager in order to solve a BufferBloat issue, but now I have A's and B's for my BufferBloat score and usually an excellent SmartLink signal.

    I am not saying it is any better than anything else, (In fact if I was buying today, I would probably go with something like the IQ-Router)

    I use it with an ARRIS TM-822R DOCSIS 3.0 Cable Modem and 125D/18U service from Comcast Xfinity.

    Now if Comcast service would stop dropping occasionally it would be perfect!

  • Randy KN4YBA
    Randy KN4YBA Member ✭✭

    My router of choice for the last several years has been Unifi USG with no bufferbloat issues what so ever. I could also track each attached appliance bandwidth.

    Recently I upgraded to the Unifi Dream Machine SE,  https://store.ui.com/collections/unifi-network-unifi-os-consoles/products/dream-machine-se

    , which provides me with Dual WAN ports (10G SFP+ and 2.5GbE RJ45). I also use

    this devise to host the Unifi Protect (Security Cameras) https://store.ui.com/collections/unifi-protect, and Unifi Talk to host my 2 VOIP phone lines, https://store.ui.com/collections/unifi-phone-system .

    With the UNIFI system, I can also track each client connected to the system. I isolate all my networks with VLANS to increase security of my local area networks, VOIP, wireless devices, and 5 AOPs installed inside and outside of my house.  I also have a 6TB drive for the security camera recorder installed into my DM SE.

    I did initially had Comcast 1GB service, using my own Netgear CM 1150V cable modem, but recently switched to Google Fiber service.  

    My DM SE is connected at 10GB to the Unifi Switch Enterprise 24 POE https://store.ui.com/collections/unifi-network-switching/products/usw-enterprise-24-poe. This switch provides me with 12- 1 GB PoE+ and 12- 2 GB PoE+ lan ports and a spare SFP+ port.




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