TP-Link crams some impressive features in the Deco M5’s small form factor. This router kicks out AC1300 Wi-Fi speeds with four internal antennas as well as two gigabit Ethernet. Getting a mesh network online with the M5 should be a snap. It can be easily concealed in any room.
Doing its best to live up to its art deco name, the M4 features an interesting appearance and some impressive specs to back it up. With support for AC1200 Wi-Fi speeds and two gigabit Ethernet ports, the M4 will fit in well with your existing Deco mesh or be a solid foundation for a new one.
- Adequate AC1200 speed
- Two Ethernet ports
- Eye-catching design
- Works with other Deco products
- Difficult to conceal
- Low speeds on 2.4Ghz
- Setup requires an app
The newer TP-Link Deco M4 tries to replace the Deco M5 with similar specs and a more inspired design. In many ways, it’s a more interesting product to look at and will likely be more visually cohesive with the decorations you already have in your home. The hockey puck design of the M5, however, makes it much easier to conceal at the back of a shelf or even mounted on the wall like a smoke detector. The Deco M5 also boasts slightly beefier specs, including 2.4Ghz speeds at 400 Mbps speeds, which is 100 more than the M4. Overall, the size and speed advantage make the Deco M5 the better device for your mesh.
Fast Hardware and Fast Wi-Fi
To be fair, both of these products are very similar in the speed they will deliver to your Wi-Fi devices. They can both push speeds of 867 Mbps at 5Ghz. However, the Deco M5 pulls ahead with 2.4Ghz speeds at 400 Mbps versus the Deco M4’s 300 Mbps. While the majority of new devices with Wi-Fi support 5Ghz, there are a lot of older devices that only support 802.11n, recently renamed Wi-Fi 4, on the 2.4Ghz band. This includes the original PS4, which will be held back at 300 Mbps.