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Netgear Orbi RBK30 Tri-Band WiFi System review:

A Wi-Fi system for homes with plenty of wall sockets

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Netgear Orbi RBK30 Tri-band WiFi System

(Part #: RBK30)
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The Good The Orbi RBK30 is easy to use, can deliver reliable Wi-Fi for a relatively large home and has all the features and settings of a standalone Netgear router.

The Bad The satellite unit is bulky and has no network ports. The system's web interface is sluggish and doesn't include built-in protection feature against online threats.

The Bottom Line If you live in a relatively large home with plenty of available wall plugs, the Orbi RBK30 makes a great Wi-Fi system, though not necessarily the best.

CNET Editors' Rating

7.0 Overall
  • Setup 7.0
  • Features 7.0
  • Performance 7.0

At the current cost of $300 (AU$499, £280) for a set of two units (one router, one satellite), the Orbi RBK30 can be a great Wi-Fi system if you live in a house that has a lot of electrical sockets. In many ways, it's just a different flavor of the RBK40.

orbi-9.jpg

The satellite unit of the RBK30 is very bulky for a wall plug device.

Dong Ngo

Bulky wall plug design

The RBK30 uses the same router unit (model RBR40) as that of the Orbi RBK40. As a result, it has exactly the same the same feature set, settings, setup process and even similar performance compared to its close sibling. (For this reason, you should check out the review of the RBK40 for more details. This short review will only focused on how this system is different from the rest in Netgear's Orbi family.)

Netgear's Orbi Wi-Fi system family

Dedicated back-haul speed 5GHz ceiling speed 2.4GHz ceiling speed Wi-Fi standard Wi-Fi coverage U.S. price
Original Orbi (RBK50) 1,733Mbps 867 400Mbps AC3000 5,000 sq ft $400
Orbi RBK40 867Mbps 867 400Mbps AC2200 4,000 sq ft $350
Orbi RBK30 867Mbps 867 400Mbps AC2200 3,500 sq ft $300

What makes the RBK30 different from its siblings is its satellite unit (model RBW30) which is less than half the size the RBK40's and designed to plug directly into a wall socket. Unfortunately, as a wall plug it's bulky, and will definitely block adjacent sockets.

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