Top positive review
506 people found this helpful
Great product once you have WORKING drivers
on September 25, 2014
First, I apologize, but this will be a lengthy review. For that reason I am breaking it into two sections. The quick and dirty section and the full review. If you are in a hurry, just read the quick and dirty section. If you want the full story, read the full review.
QUICK AND DIRTY REVIEW: Great product once you have WORKING drivers.
Steps to make this work correctly under Windows 8.1 x64
1. DO NOT install the Asus drivers and setup utility!!! (I can't stress this enough.)
2. Plug in USB adapter and let Windows assign the driver automatically.
3. Go to the Edimax driver download page using the link below and download the drivers.
4. Go to device manager and select update driver for the Asus wireless adapter.
5. Select the Win81x64 folder in the extracted driver location and let Windows update the driver.
6. Enjoy your now, fully functional, 802.11ac adapter!
I am a fan of Asus. I have an Asus MB and the RT-AC87U router. All work exceptionally well. I figured that as I have an 802.11ac router, I might as well take advantage of that speed and get a USB 802.11ac adapter. Having had good experiences with other Asus products, I bought this adapter.
I downloaded the latest version of the driver and setup utility from the Asus website, installed the driver package and plugged in the adapter. It opened the, newly installed bloatware, network setup utility and allowed me to connect to my WiFi. All appeared good. I was connected at a good speed, around 520 Mbps and able to surf and stream just fine. I figured I would live with the unnecessary bloatware. And all was good, for about 6-8 hours. At this point, the adapter just stopped responding. Solid blue LED, no flashing, no connection to the network. Pull up bloatware, disable and re-enable radio. No difference. I unplug the device and plug it back in and it starts to work again. Another couple hours later, same problem. I spend a lot of time troubleshooting and after days of random internet drops decide it must be defective and return it for an exchange. I get the new adapter the next day, God Bless Amazon, and plug it in. Again, all seems right with the internet. Again, disconnected after several hours. I try to extract the drivers from the Asus install package only to find they are contained in Installshield CAB files that cannot be opened as an archive. So, the only way to get the Asus drivers is to use their, crappy, buggy bloatware utility.
I read in another review that if you uninstall the Asus bloatware and drivers and just plug it in and let Windows assign the driver it works fine. I do this. And it does. After a fashion. It works fine, if you want an 802.11n adapter. Using the WIndows driver I was never able to get it to connect at better than 280-320 Mbps. This is great for wireless N, but we are paying for a wireless AC adapter. I research some more, and find that this product has the same Realtek chipset, RTL8812AU, as the Edimax EW-7822UAC USB adapter. I download the Edimax drivers from the link below and extract them. Go into device manager and update the driver for the Asus wireless adapter and point it at the RTWLANU_Driver\Win81X64 directory in the extracted folder location and, miracle of miracles, it updates without a hitch and now connects at 520-720 Mbps consistently. Voila, a working USB 3.0 802.11ac adapter. It has been stable for a few days and I'm hopeful it is a permanent fix. And, bonus, no crappy bloatware!
Link to Edimax drivers: http://www.edimax.com/edimax/download/download/data/edimax/global/download/for_home/wireless_adapters/wireless_adapters_ac1200_dual-band/ew-7822uac
So, you may be asking, why I would I rate this product 5 stars? Well, because I'm rating the adapter, not the software. With working drivers, this is a 5 Star adapter. It has great range and great speed. The Asus software would get 0 stars from me. Maybe someone at Asus will read these reviews and put out a driver only package. NOTE: Most people don't want or need your bloatware, Asus!
Anyway, thanks for reading and I hope the review helps others avoid my frustration with what is, overall, a very good product.