The new COVR-X1873 from D-Link is a powerful triple node system of AX1800 Dual Band Seamless Mesh Wi-Fi 6 towers – the latest in the company’s award-winning COVR series and absolutely one of the most impressive. I’d go so far as to say this is one of the best mesh Wi-Fi 6 systems you can buy for a large house, with plenty of thick walls and perhaps a few deadspots, but anything less than that and you’d probably want something cheaper.
The system is rated to offer complete Wi-Fi 6 coverage to homes up to 740 square metres, boosted by a feature-rich set that primarily draws on OFDMA and MU-MIMO technologies to more efficiently push data around while reducing latency. For a medium to large smart home, this is a must.
D-Link aren’t winning any awards for innovation here. These nodes are lily-white towers that are rather tall but keep away from the surface-area-hogging bulk that some competing brands can’t stay away from. Despite the tall profile, they fit rather well with any design scheme, but obviously you’ll want to place them as high as possible, which means you’ll have the ceiling to consider.
I do wish the nodes were a bit flatter as they look a bit too obnoxious standing on shelves around my home, but given the performance, I’m willing to forgive their obtrusive bodies. Although one benefit of the size is enough space to now include four gigabit ethernet ports per node, which if you’re going for the three-pack (D-Link also offers two and one packs), gives you a generous… well, I don’t need to math that for you, do I? Along with the WAN port, this makes the connectivity options some of the best and most flexible of any mesh system I’ve tested thus far.
The D-Link app is one of the cleanest and most intuitive I’ve used as well, so installation really isn’t that daunting, even for those who haven’t played around with mesh systems before. This makes it much easier to suggest to your boss next time the office Wi-Fi kicks it.
If you’re playing around with the 2.4Ghz band then I’d say it’s safe to expect data rates well above 500Mbps. At one point I’d get around 570, which is more than enough for me and my plethora of smart devices. On 5GHz connections, make that a figure in excess of 1100Mbps.
Then you have other for-convenience features like voice control and support for the latest WPA3 encryption, offering something that’s up to date with the most high-end mesh systems out there and brings D-Link forward from middling mid-tier offerings like they’ve put out in the past.
Make no mistake about it, this is a powerhouse system and even one node for a smaller home or apartment should be enough to vastly improve the Wi-Fi connection you’ve been contending with every since you started building that smart home.
Verdict & Value
A 3-pack is $549, 2-pack $399, and a 1-pack $249. That’s still quite a hefty investment, but I do think D-Link have finally started to justify such a high price tag. It’s an entry-level mesh system, so you still won’t get as many nifty features as more expensive models, but rarely do people need that unless they are playing around with a larger office space that’s likely shared between businesses.
For a homeowner, the need for mesh is only going to keep increasing the more our IoT society rolls along. We haven’t even begun to hit the potential of smart homes, so at least going with something like the COVR-X1873 mesh will keep you well-equipped for the next few years.
FOUR AND A HALF STARS (OUT OF FIVE)
Highlights: Blazingly fast speeds and very reliable; simple set-up; so many ethernet ports.
Lowlights: Still quite expensive for an entry-level mesh; towers can be annoyingly tall depending on your design aesthetic.
Price: $549 (for 3-pack)