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Netgear Orbi RBKE963 Review

True Score

87
88
4

Experts

91
3,497

Consumers

Product Awards

Top 5

GR Certified

Customer Favorite

Expert Rankings

The Netgear Orbi RBKE963 offers widespread coverage, good download speeds, and a fast setup process, but it doesn’t have any USB ports or Quality of Service settings.

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Table of Contents

Product Snapshot

Overview

The Netgear Orbi RBKE963 mesh router system is a high-end pick introduced in 2021. The quad-band system consists of one router node and two satellite nodes, which, when combined, offer coverage of up to 9000 Sq ft for up to 200 devices. This ranks right up there with what the best routers on the market have to offer.

The quad-band Wi-Fi 6E mesh system can work on the 6GHz radio band and offers decent wired connectivity options, with one 2.5G port and three 1G LAN ports on both the router and the satellites. Owners can also directly manage and filter content accessed through Netgear’s Smart Parental Controls and Netgear Armor (Intenet Security) or set up a dedicated IoT configuration for smart devices.

Best For

  • Netgear

Consensus

our Verdict

Sold as a router and one or two satellites, the Netgear Orbi RBKE963 WiFi 6e mesh system is perfect for large households and users who want fast internet access and widespread coverage up to 9000 sq ft for up to 200 devices. The system offers download speeds of up to 93.4 Mbps and 330.82 Mbps for its 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz networks at a range of 95 feet. Its 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz speeds place it in the top 40% of routers in our certified tested list.

The RBKE963 mesh system is also easy to install and manage through the Orbi mobile app or web console. Owners can use one of its 5 GHz bands as a wireless backhaul or the 2.5 GHz port for a wired backhaul connection. While the mesh system features support for most WiFi 6 protocols, such as WPA3 encryption, Beamforming, and MU-MIMO for efficient data streaming, it doesn’t have any USB ports or Quality of Service settings.

ReasonS to Buy

  • Good connectivity speeds
    • With download speeds of 93.4 Mbps (2.4 GHz) and 330.82 Mbps (5GHz), the RBKE963 mesh router system has a top 40% standing compared to other routers in its category.

    • It also has download speeds of up to 847 Mbps on its 6 GHz band. This makes it great for multiple data-intensive users who need fast and reliable connectivity for their large smart homes.

  • Widespread coverage
    • The RBKE963 delivers a strong connection for devices within a distance of up to 95 ft. This range ranks it among the top 40% of our certified tested routers.

  • Easy to set up and install
    • Setup and installation of the RBKE963 is easy to do courtesy of the user-friendly Orbi mobile app or web console.

Reason to Avoid

  • No USB connectivity
    • The RBKE963 mesh system has no USB ports on its satellites or router.

Netgear Orbi RBKE963 Specs

# of LAN Ports# of LAN Ports4
# of Phone Ports# of Phone Portsn/a
# of WAN Ports# of WAN Ports1
App CompatibleApp CompatibleYes
Available StorageAvailable Storage512MB
Band TechnologyBand TechnologyQuad
Data Encryption TypeData Encryption TypeWPA2
Energy Star CertifiedEnergy Star CertifiedNo
Frequency BandsFrequency Bands2.4 GHz, 5.0 GHz, 6.0 GHz
Integrated ModemIntegrated ModemNo
LAN PortsLAN Ports4 Gb Ethernet
MU-MIMO SupportMU-MIMO SupportYes
Mesh SystemMesh SystemYes
Number of AntennasNumber of Antennas12
Parental ControlsParental ControlsYes
Processor CoresProcessor CoresQuad
Processor SpeedProcessor Speed2.2GHz
Quality of Service PrioritizationQuality of Service Prioritizationn/a
WiFi RangeWiFi Range9000 sq. ft
WiFi SpeedWiFi Speed10.8 Gb
Wired SpeedWired Speed10000 Mb
Wireless StandardWireless StandardAC, AX, N

All Specs

Test Results

2.4 GHz Download speed (Mbits/s)93.4
2.4 GHz Upload speed (Mbits/s)0
5 GHz Download speed (Mbits/s)330.8167
5 GHz Upload speed (Mbits/s)0
Router Range (ft)95
Latency (ms)0
6 Ghz Download speed (Mbits/s)847
6 Ghz Upload speed (Mbits/s)0

All Tests

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Product Comparison

Netgear Orbi RBKE963 Review

True Score

87
77
79
74

Ranking

#

1

/

37

#

28

/

37

#

22

/

37

#

34

/

37

Market Context

The Netgear Orbi RBKE963 mesh router system is a high-end pick introduced in 2021. The quad-band system consists of one router node and two satellite…

The Netgear Orbi RBKE963 mesh router system is a high-end pick introduced in 2021. The quad-band system consists of one router node and two satellite nodes, which, when combined, offer coverage of up to 9000 Sq ft for up to 200 devices. This ranks right up there with what the best routers on the market have to offer.

The quad-band Wi-Fi 6E mesh system can work on the 6GHz radio band and offers decent wired connectivity options, with one 2.5G port and three 1G LAN ports on both the router and the satellites. Owners can also directly manage and filter content accessed through Netgear’s Smart Parental Controls and Netgear Armor (Intenet Security) or set up a dedicated IoT configuration for smart devices.

With regard to download speeds, the Netgear Orbi RBKE963 achieves speeds of up to 93.4 Mbps and 330.82 Mbps on its 2.4GHz and 5GHz networks,…

With regard to download speeds, the Netgear Orbi RBKE963 achieves speeds of up to 93.4 Mbps and 330.82 Mbps on its 2.4GHz and 5GHz networks, making it inferior to the Netgear RAX20, which has speeds of up to 560 Mbps and 2480 Mbps. Additionally, the Netgear Orbi RBKE963 is a 4-band router, while the Netgear RAX20 is a dual-band router. The RBKE963 is also sold as a three-piece WiFi mesh system, while the RAX20 is only sold as a single-unit router. Here’s our Netgear RAX20 review for a deeper look into what else it offers.

The Netgear Orbi RBKE963 WiFi mesh system includes a total of 12 antennas, which is more than what buyers will get with the Netgear NightHawk…

The Netgear Orbi RBKE963 WiFi mesh system includes a total of 12 antennas, which is more than what buyers will get with the Netgear NightHawk Pro Gaming XR700, which only has four antennas. Also different is that the RBKE963 WiFi mesh system doesn’t have any USB ports while the XR700 has two, and finally, owners of the RBKE963 won’t get access to Quality of Service settings where they could limit upload and download speeds for connected devices. The XR700, on the other hand, does have these settings. Check it out in our Netgear Nighthawk XR700 review, but if you’d be content with a basic mesh system that doesn’t offer as many complex settings but still maintains excellent connectivity, then you might like our Linksys Atlas Pro 6 MX 5503 review.

With download speeds of up to 93.4 Mbps and 330.2 Mbps, the Netgear Orbi RBKE963 is a lot faster than the Razer Sila, rated at…

With download speeds of up to 93.4 Mbps and 330.2 Mbps, the Netgear Orbi RBKE963 is a lot faster than the Razer Sila, rated at 40.35 Mbps and 226 Mbps, respectively. The Netgear Orbi RBKE963 WiFi mesh router system includes anti-malware tools, making it superior in this regard to the Razer Sila, which does not. On the other hand, the Razer Sila has two USB ports, while the RBKE963 system does not have any. If you’re curious about what else the Razer Sila has to offer, go ahead and take a look at our Razer Sila AC3000 review.

# of LAN Ports

4

4

6

3

# of Phone Ports

n/a

n/a

n/a

n/a

# of WAN Ports

1

1

1

1

App Compatible

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Available Storage

512MB

256MB

512MB

4000MB

Band Technology

Quad

Dual

Tri

Tri

Data Encryption Type

WPA2

WPA, WPA2, WPA2-PSK, WPA3

WPA2-PSK

WPA, WPA-PSK

Energy Star Certified

No

No

No

No

Dig Deeper

Netgear RAX20 Review →

Netgear Nighthawk XR700 Review →

Razer Sila AC3000 Review →

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Score Card

E

Expert Score

88

*.75

We place a 75% weighted value on Expert Test Scores

C

Customer Score

91

*.25

We place a 25% weighted value on Customer Scores

True Score

87

Expert Scores

  • PC Mag
    85.3

    Category Trust Rating

    90
    The Netgear Orbi RBKE963 is a stellar (albeit quite expensive) three-piece Wi-Fi 6E mesh system… Read More

    By:

    John R. Delaney
  • Tom’s Guide
    86.71

    Category Trust Rating

    90
    Netgear’s Orbi RBKE963 is easily the fastest mesh-router system on the planet. It’s also the… Read More

    By:

    Brian Nadel
  • Trusted Reviews
    67.87

    Category Trust Rating

    90
    Big, bold and extremely fast, the Netgear Orbi RBKE963 Wi-Fi 6E Mesh System can deliver… Read More

    By:

    David Ludlow
  • T3
    26.31

    Category Trust Rating

    100
    The Netgear Orbi Wi-Fi 6E (RBKE963) is the most premium mesh Wi-Fi system I have… Read More

    By:

    ROBERT JONES