There are plenty of low cost 802.11n routers or boards supporting OpenWRT, even starting at $10 or less such as A5-V11 mini router, but if you’re looking for something a bit more powerful with 802.11ac connectivity, options are much more limited, especially if you need something at a lower cost. One option is Xiaomi MiWiFi router based on Mediatek MT7620A with 64MB RAM, and T-Firefly team is now working on FireWRT board based on the more powerful MT7621A processor coupled with 512 MB RAM, and 16 MB SPI flash.
- Wi-Fi SoC – Mediatek MT7621A dual core MIPS 1004Kc processor @ 880MHz
- System Memory – 512 MB DDR3 (Beta version: 256 MB)
- Storage – 16 MB SPI flash memory, 2x SATA 3.0 ports, micro SD card slot
- 802.11 b/g/n @ 2.4GHz up to 300Mbps
- 802.11 a/n/ac @ 5 GHz, up to 867Mbps (AC1200 class router)
- External High-Gain Antennas – 2x for 2.4GHz, 2x for 5GHz
- Ethernet – 2x LAN (Gigabit Ethernet), 1x WAN (Gigabit Ethernet)
- USB – 1x USB 2.0 host port, 1x USB 3.0 port
- mini PCIe slot (multiplexed with SATA), on the back of the board
- 2x 32-pin headers with GPIO, I2C, I2S, UART, NFC, JTAG, RGMII, 12V, 5V, 3.3V, GND
- Misc – Power, WPS and reset keys. LEDs for Ethernet, WiFi, SATA, and power
- Power – 12V/2A
- Dimensions – 125 x 93.5 mm
The boar runs OpenWRT, and the company has already released binary images, source code (U-boot, OpenWRT SDK), schematics (PDF), and mechanical files on the project’s download page, as well as some WIP documentation on the Wiki.
You can’t purchase the board directly on Aliexpress yet, but the company launched a beta program to allow developers to purchase a $69 kit including FireWRT board, a 12V/2A power adapter, an acrylic enclosure, a SATA cable, an heatsink, and a USB TO TTL UART Module. Please note that this beta board only has 256 MB RAM instead of 512 MB for the final version.
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.