Netgear Nighthawk X6S Tri-Band Mesh Extender Review: A Simple Fix for Wi-Fi Woes

Netgear Nighthawk X6S (EX8000) Review: Hardware and Setup

There isn’t much to look at on the Nighthawk X6S (EX8000) – it’s a stylized black box that matches the color scheme of Netgear's (and many other) high-performance routers. The nondescript box has a single Netgear logo emblazoned on the front along with eight LEDs to provide visual cues of connectivity and throughput status. There is an option to disable all the lights to let it operate in an incognito mode, like the Orbi mesh system, for those that don’t like blinking lights. 

Netgear Nighthawk X6S Front

Netgear adds four gigabit Ethernet ports to the mix so you can easily set the Nighthawk X6S (EX8000) in your entertainment center to connect all your TV, home theater PC and gaming consoles while boosting your wireless network signals at the same time -- the device isn't a simple extender, it's a wireless network bridge as well. A USB 2.0 port is available for sharing a USB storage device or printer. The built-in media server supports DLNA sharing, too.

Netgear Nighthawk X6S Ports

Netgear delivers on its promise of easy setup with the Nighthawk X6S (EX8000). Simply plug it in and connect to the open wireless network it creates to start the setup process. The guided setup has few options to choose from – create username and password, select extender or wireless AP mode, choose the networks to extend and a checkbox to enable one Wi-Fi name.

select network

Once you’re all up and running, you can access the Nighthawk X6S (EX8000) settings via its IP address or the usual http://mywifiext (Windows) or http://mywifiext.local (Mac OS X and iOS) host names. You won’t need to access the settings page much, however.

USB settings
There’s the basic Wi-Fi channel, speed, a list of connected devices, USB, WPS, LED on/off and access schedule settings, but we didn’t find any reason to access the settings once it was up and running since there’s not much advanced functionality to configure on an extender.

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