The Asus ROG Rapture GT-AC5300 did not waste any time in showcasing what it is all about. With an SRP around $400, the GT-AC5300 is a top-tier router that focuses on accommodating heavy-duty internet use.
With a hefty amount of Gigabit LAN ports and features that are all gamer-centric, the GT-AC5300 is a beast that delivers on speed and performance.
The features that the Rog Rapture GT-AC5300 comes with make it highly attractive for gamers, specifically online gamers who love to stream not only their games but also 4K videos.
You can bet the GT-AC5300 will be able to handle such strenuous online activity without breaking a sweat – of course; your current ISP plan will be the backbone.
As we have noted, the ROG Rapture GT-AC5300 does appear to be quite a powerful router and with an emphasis on improving the online gaming experience.
That said, for casual home internet users, I do feel that the GT-AC5300 might be overqualified for such a menial task.
The ROG Rapture GT-AC5300 is a high-end tri-band router from one of the most trusted names in this industry, Asus.
The ROG Rapture's design showcases a heavy emphasis on performance with its eight external antennas and a heap of ports as well.
How well does the Asus GT-AC5300 stack up compared to other premium-grade tri-band routers?
Does it offer enough features and high-level performance to warrant its price tag? Let us break down the GT-AC5300 and find out.
Features Triple-level Game Acceleration technology to enhance your online gaming experience.
It is equipped with a tri-band 802.11ac wireless standard.
Up to eight Gigabit LAN ports and two USB 3.0 ports.
Supports the AiMesh Wi-Fi system.
Top-tier quad-core processor.
Advanced wireless network security protocol.
Comes with the ROG Gaming Center feature to help further optimize your online gaming experience.
Spider-like Router to Traverse the World Wide Web
When it comes to design, the GT-AC5300 looks virtually similar to the previous Asus RT-AC5300 that was released a couple of years ago.
Both the GT and AC5300 incorporates a square-shaped design and comes with a total of eight external antennas. The GT-AC5300 is also quite large with its 2.5 x 9.6 x 9.6 (H x W x D) measurements.
The exterior aesthetic is an all-black case with copper accents on the side. Over at the middle is the ROG (Republic of Gamers) logo on top of a zig-zag pattern surface.
Eight detachable and movable antennas surround the casing of the GT-AC5300, and it gives it an almost arachnid-like vibe that, for me, adds a significant level of charm.
Detailed LED Status Indicators
Other notable visual features include the standard LED status indicators. With the GT-AC5300, the LED lights are all located over at the front side of the router.
This makes it quite visible and prominent – good news if you want to check the status of your router and network quickly.
The LED will help users keep track of their LAN, WAN, and WPS connectivity. It also highlights the status of both 2.4GHz and 5GHz bands and indicates whether the unit is on or not.
However, for some, the constantly blinking lights might pose as a distraction. Fortunately, Asus outfitted the GT-AC5300 with the option to turn off the LED indicators if need be.
Easily Accessible Button Layout
All essential buttons are located on the left side of the router. You will find the Wi-Fi button, WPS button, and the LED switch over there.
All three buttons are positioned in a way that you can operate the router without even needing to look at the button layout. You can pretty much operate it by touch once you are familiar with button placement.
It’s the Port Royale of Routers
Moving over to the back of the GT-AC5300 router will unveil an incredible eight LAN Gigabit Ethernet ports.
If you think that's a lot, we haven't even included the two ultra-fast USB 3.0 ports and the WAN port! You will also find the power and reset button along with the myriad of ports at the back.
In addition to the total of eight Gigabit LAN ports, the GT-AC5300 also comes with the ability for port aggregation which means you can combine two LAN ports into one and double the speed to reach, theoretically, up to 2Gbps speeds.
Just make sure that your NAS devices are compatible with link aggregation though.
The GT-AC5300 router also allows users to transform one of the LAN ports into an extra WAN port. This feature allows the router host broadband connections simultaneously.
As icing on the proverbial cake, the ROG Rapture GT-AC5300 also comes with MU-MIMO support to allow for more devices to connect without slowing down the online experience for everyone in the network.
Plug and Play Installation
As advanced as the GT-AC5300 router is, it is still pretty simple and easy to set up. You can opt to do so via the official web portal interface of the Asus mobile app.
For beginners, we highly recommend you use the Setup Wizard as it is programmed to configure your network automatically with the best possible setting.
For experienced users, you can pick the advanced setup to further iron out any kinks in the router's default configuration. Again, the setup procedure for this router is relatively simple.
Once the initialization and setup process is completed, you can then rename your network's SSID and create a password for your Wi-Fi. It took me around 6 minutes to complete the router setup.
A Rather Limited Mobile App
One of the biggest gripes that I have with using the mobile app to reconfigure the GT-AC5300 router is how absurdly limiting the options contained in the app are.
I also hope that Asus will allow users to change the display interface used on the web portal as the signature red and black motif of ROG doesn't translate well if we are talking about pages that contain highly detailed information. The interface strains the eyes.
Functionalities and Features
Filled to the Brim with Advanced Router Features
The GT-AC5300 router takes a lot of inspiration from previous high-end Asus routers from yesteryear. As we have already noted above, the GT-AC5300 comes with dual-WAN and port aggregation technology.
Both of which will significantly improve your online gaming, streaming, and browsing experience by a wide margin.
Users will also be able to take advantage of advanced security features, namely the TrendMicro network protection service.
Take note that this online security service is a paid monthly subscription plan. By purchasing the ROG Rapture GT-AC5300, you get the lifetime service for free.
Users will also be able to access advanced router settings like QoS (Quality of Service) features. Using the QoS will allow the network admin to check the bandwidth traffic in real-time.
Users will also be able to prioritize specific clients as to which gets more bandwidth thrown their way.
This is an excellent feature for gamers as well as it can help reduce the amount of lag and latency if they live in a home with multiple connected devices/clients using the internet at the same time.
Another notable feature found in the GT-AC5300 is its advanced USB interface which allows the router to host not only external hard drives but also all USB peripherals and a cellular dongle.
Fantastic Gaming Features
With a total of eight Gigabit LAN ports, users can utilize the speed and stability of wired connections for more than a couple of devices.
This is a great option to have as online gaming dramatically benefits from the speed that connecting to LAN ports can provide.
There is also the staggering amount of memory that the ROG Rapture GT-AC5300 has, which is 512MB of RAM and up to 1GB of flash memory.
As we have already touched upon earlier in this review, the GT-AC5300 is designed to provide optimum support for online gaming.
First off, the router already has pre-configured settings that are aimed to optimize hundreds of games.
You can choose from the list of games included in that list, and the GT-AC5300 will automatically reconfigure your network settings to provide maximum performance for that specific game.
Additionally, the Rapture GT-AC5300 comes with built-in WTFast service, which is a monthly subscription designed to optimize your online gaming experience.
This is done by providing a dedicated server (GPN or Gamers Private Network) that directly connects your device to the game – thus considerably lowering the chances of lag and latency issues.
WTFast is already built into the ROG Rapture GT-AC5300 and also comes with one free account.
Outstanding 5GHz Speeds and Impressive Range
Overall, the GT-AC5300 managed to give excellent scores across the board. The wireless signal was pretty stable with the 2.4GHz band clocking in 96Mbps while the 5GHz delivered a steady 750Mbps speed.
If the 2.4GHz's speed seems low – understand that high-end routers only use 2.4GHz frequency bands for compatibility issues.
The focus here is mostly with the superior 5GHz band, and in that regard, the GT-AC5300 performs above and beyond expectations.
The signal range is surprisingly impressive as the GT-AC5300 managed to hit 100Mbps from 150-feet away – keep in mind that this was in an open area without much obstruction between the device and the router. That said, this is still a remarkable feat to achieve.
To go into further detail, we tested the Rapture GT-AC5300 on both wired and wireless connections.
Connecting our device via LAN yielded top-tier throughput speeds which maxed out at 946Mbps. Switching over to the WAN connection, the throughput still clocked in a blistering 929Mbps.
Please take note that I didn't even activate the QoS and it still managed to hit this number.
As you would expect from a high-end router, the ROG Rapture GT-AC5300 is quite expensive. Expect to drop around $350 for this router, which is quite costly.
However, if you take into account every unique feature that the GT-AC5300 has to offer, this price tag is starting to look quite reasonable.
I don't exactly recommend the Rapture GT-AC5300 for casual internet users as this will be ultimately underutilized and they are better off with a cheaper router.
For power gamers, streamers, YouTubers, and professional gamers though – the Asus Rog Rapture GT-AC5300 should be at the top of your shortlist.
Trust me; as a fellow video game enthusiast to another, the Asus Rapture GT-AC5300 is explicitly designed to cater to our needs.
Even if the GT-AC5300 has been around for a couple of years now, it is still a worthwhile investment and still manages to deliver top-notch performance.
Again, I would like to stress that if you only use the internet for the most basic application like web surfing and streaming videos, then using the ROG Rapture GT-AC5300 is akin to burning bdown a building that has a roach rather than merely spraying it with insecticide.
You genuinely don't need this much firepower for casual internet use.
However, for avid online gamers and even professional gamers, what the GT-AC5300 offers is everything you would need to ensure smooth sailing when going on your digital adventures with friends and other passionate gamers around the world.
There are nitpicks that I would like to bring up though, such as the interface's color palette of red and black – not exactly easy on the eyes especially when you're tweaking settings that feature a dozen letters.
The mobile app could also benefit from an overhaul with what you can do with it. Other than that, this is an excellent gaming router that you should consider investing in if you describe yourself as a power gamer.