Linksys adds two more Smart Wi-Fi routers to EA series

The Linksys EA6300 and Linksys EA6400 routers, Linksys' first products to be announced since it moved from Cisco to Belkin, are true dual-band and support 802.11ac, the latest Wi-Fi standard.

Dong Ngo SF Labs Manager, Editor / Reviews
CNET editor Dong Ngo has been involved with technology since 2000, starting with testing gadgets and writing code for CNET Labs' benchmarks. He now manages CNET San Francisco Labs, reviews 3D printers, networking/storage devices, and also writes about other topics from online security to new gadgets and how technology impacts the life of people around the world.
Dong Ngo
2 min read
A Smart Wi-Fi router in the EA series from Linksys.
A Smart Wi-Fi router in the EA series from Linksys. Dong Ngo/CNET

Linksys announced today that two more Smart Wi-Fi routers have been added to its EA series. This is the company's first product announcement since it was sold to Belkin by Cisco last month.

The two new routers are the Smart Wi-Fi Router AC 1200 Advanced Multimedia (model EA6300) and the Smart Wi-Fi Router AC 1600 Video Enthusiast (model EA6400).

Both of these routers are true dual-band and support the 802.11ac Wi-Fi standard on the 5GHz band. Late last year, Linksys began shipping the Smart Wi-Fi Router AC 1750 HD Video Pro (model EA6500), and it's still the company's top-notch 802.11ac-enabled router for the U.S. market.

In terms of specs, the existing EA6500 router offers speeds of up to 1,300Mbps on the 5GHz band and up to 450Mbps on the 2.4GHz band. The two new routers have lower cap speeds than those: specifically, the EA6300 offers up to 867Mbps on the 5GHz band and just 300Mbps on the 2.4GHz band, and the EA6400 offers 1,300Mbps and 300Mbps on the 5GHz and 2.4GHz bands, respectively.

Note that you can only experience these differences in Wi-Fi speeds if you have clients that support the 802.11ac standard or the top speed of the 802.11n standard. (Read more about different Wi-Fi standards here.) For most existing clients, especially smartphones and tablets, that generally comes with a Wi-Fi cap of 300Mbps at most; the new routers and the EA6500 offer virtually the same benefits in terms of Wi-Fi speeds.

Other than that, both new routers support Gigabit Ethernet and USB 3.0. They also support IPv6 and Beamforming technology to offer long range and signal stability. Like all routers in the EA series, the new routers come with a cloud-based feature that makes it possible to manage your home network via the Linksys Smart Wi-Fi portal (formerly known as Cisco Connect Cloud). The use of this portal is now optional, however, and users can choose to manage the router locally, the traditional way. The new routers also support mobile apps, including third-party apps to offers even more benefits.

The Linksys Smart Wi-Fi EA6300 is available now, costing $170. The Linksys Smart Wi-Fi EA6400 will be shipping by the end of the month and will cost $190. These are just suggested prices, however, and likely will soon drop, since the top-tier Linksys EA6500 currently costs around $185.

Linksys has been celebrating its 25th anniversary in the last few days. Founded on April 28, 1988, the company has since released a few dozen of networking products, changed its logo nine times, and moved from being an independent company to being part of Cisco and now part of Belkin. Check out the infographic below for Linksys' highlights over the years.