In case you you still think OpenWRT capable NEXX WT1520 router is still too expensive at $15, what about an $8 OpenWRT router? That’s what LY mini wireless router costs including shipping, and it’s better known as A5-V11, the name of its PCB.
- SoC – Mediatek/Ralink) RT5350F MIPS processor @ 360MHz
- System Memory – 32MB RAM (W9825G6EH-75). Some people reported theirs only have 16MB RAM, so YMMV.
- Storage – 4MB NAND flash (Pm25LQ032)
- Connectivity – Wi-Fi 802.11b/g/n up to 150 Mbps; 1x 10/100M Ethernet
- USB – 1x USB 2.0 host port, 1x micro USB port for power
- Misc – Power LED, factory reset pinhole
- Power – 5V via micro USB port
- Dimensions – 6.1 x 2.3 x 1.4 cm
Contrary to WT1520, A5-V11 is already part of OpenWRT trunk, but the firmware image is not automatically built yet. Fully details can be found on OpenWRT Wiki. If you connect a serial board, you may have to add a 470 Ohm to 1 KOhm resistor to the Rx pin to prevent the board from hanging at boot time.
The router can be purchased on Aliexpress for $8.25 including shipping, DealExtreme for $10.86 (with 32MB RAM), or Ebay for $8.72. It might be on other websites too, but since it’s an OEM product without clear branding it may be difficult to find.
Thanks to Maurer for the tip.
Jean-Luc started CNX Software in 2010 as a part-time endeavor, before quitting his job as a software engineering manager, and starting to write daily news, and reviews full time later in 2011.
18 Replies to “A5-V11 Mini Router Runs OpenWRT (Linux) For Just $8”
Chinese USB wifi adapters have gone under $4*, I guess these/similar will soon enough too.
it’s not a router. it’s dongle – can’t work without host computer
to subject – good example to see that MagJack is more expensive then connector and transformer 8)
Web interface may sometimes says “32MB”, but cat /proc/meminfo reports 16MB in all units I have seen so far…
> “it’s not a router. it’s dongle – can’t work without host computer”
@Victor: you’re wrong, it’s definitely a whole autonomous computer/router (RT5350F) that just needs 5V on its micro-usb interface to operate.
Lol – so much confusion. I linked to a dongle/network card, not because it’s the same thing, but because these were $30+ a couple of years back, and about $8 last time I bought one. So it wouldn’t be surprising if prices for Open-Wrt-capable routers dropped a bit further.
@ade he meant the link from post #1
Still waiting on one with an open chipset.
There are some GPIOS on the board as well:
You need good soldering skills to solder them.
I have soldered an external serial port on my router, more pics will follow.
> Contrary to WT1520, A5-V11 is already part of OpenWRT trunk?
WHAT?? 1520 have long time ago in openwrt trunk, same for 3020.
I based this on information I got on OpenWRT Wiki. Anyway, I’ve crossed out the “contrary to WT1520” in the post.
Hi, do you think it’s possible to upgrade Flash ROM with a bigger one? I found that exist “Pm25LQ128” (so with 16MB space) and I asked on OpenWRT forum but without luck, you can find thread here:
@gics: did you checked WT1520 thread on openwrt forum? I think there was some discussion about upgrading but not sure if ram or flash.
Is is possible to restore original firmware after openwrt was installed?
A5-V11 Mini Router also Runs Debian (Linux)
I’m interested in this – I was running out of FLASH when I put openWRT on – would not even let me update the password, so I removed the ZIP file I used to upgrade the board to openWrt – it accepted the flash and now nothing works – I know TELNET is supposed to stop working – but SSH won’t work – it’s there (wrong address at 192.168.100.1) – it will ping – but will not accept any user/pass combo in telnet or SSH – and I’ve even tried that hold-the-button-down reset with the fast flashing lights – STILL can’t get in – so I was thinking of replacing the flash anyway – but may as well get more space while I’m on so I can install the graphical interface for openWrt – and MQTT of course. Did you get anywhere?
Noob question – just bought this router and when I connect my Huawei E3131, it does not see the dongle. How can I solve this problem?