To help us provide you with free impartial advice, we may earn a commission if you buy through links on our site. Learn more

ZTE Miracle AX3000 Pro review: A respectable Wi-Fi 6 router at a low price

Our Rating :
Price when reviewed : £71
inc VAT

While not the fastest router in its price range, this stylish model still has ample connectivity for most homes


  • Decent Wi-Fi 6 performance
  • Attractively priced


  • NFC tag for tap-to-connect
  • Short on features
  • Clunky mobile app

With its low-rise white casing and quartet of oblong aerials, the ZTE Miracle AX3000 Pro looks a lot like the old Honor Router 3 (£80). It’s a good role model to follow: Honor’s little marvel was the first really cheap Wi-Fi 6 router on the market, making the latest wireless technology available to everyone.

Two years on, ZTE’s offering aims to fill a similar niche, with a decent chunk of Wi-Fi 6 bandwidth for the knockdown price of £71. While it’s nowhere near as fast as the latest premium routers, the Miracle AX3000 Pro has enough performance and reach to satisfy the needs of the typical connected home.

Buy now from ZTE Devices

ZTE Miracle AX3000 Pro review: What you need to know

The Miracle AX3000 Pro is a dual-band router, broadcasting on the 2.4GHz and 5GHz frequency ranges. It supports Wi-Fi 6 and all older wireless standards; Wi-Fi 6E devices can connect too, although they won’t get the benefits of the latest 6GHz technology.

The name of the router reflects (more or less) its aggregated bandwidth – a maximum connection speed of 574Mbits/sec on the 2.4GHz band, plus 2,400Mbits/sec in the 5GHz range. To maximise real-world throughout, there’s support for fat 160MHz channels in the 5GHz range, and 2×2 MIMO on both radios, so individual clients can receive two data streams at once.

For wired connections the router also offers four gigabit Ethernet sockets, while an NFC tag embedded in the top lets you connect Android devices with a tap.

READ NEXT: The very best Wi-Fi 6 routers currently available

ZTE Miracle AX3000 Pro review: Price and competition

The Miracle AX3000 Pro is an inexpensive router, but the TP-Link Archer AX53 undercuts it very slightly at around £70 – and the D-Link R15 Eagle Pro is even cheaper at £56. As we’ll see below, all three of these routers are in the same ballpark performance-wise, though the TP-Link is the best of the bunch.

If you want to move up to the next level of performance, you’ll have to pay a fair bit more. The Asus TUF-AX5400 Gaming Router is much faster than any of those budget options, but at £162 it’s more than twice the price of the ZTE. From the same stable, the Asus RT-AX82U is another formidable option, coming in at £200.

For the very best speeds, you’ll need to raise the budget even higher: the Netgear Nighthawk RAXE300 delivers excellent performance over Wi-Fi 6, and adds Wi-Fi 6E support for compatible devices. At £400 though it’s aimed at a very different market to the ZTE Miracle AX3000 Pro.

ZTE Miracle AX3000 Pro review: Design and features

ZTE proudly advertises that the Miracle has won multiple design awards, and it’s certainly a visually striking design. It’s cutely sized, with a footprint of 245 x 130mm, and while the overall shape is similar to the Honor Router 3, it’s more interesting to look at thanks to tasteful bevels on the casing and antennae, which create pleasing geometric patterns of light and shade.

Functionally, the router is very basic. The four aerials aren’t adjustable – they simply fold upwards and snap into a vertical position – and a single multicoloured light on the front is your only visual indication of the router’s status. At the back, the four gigabit Ethernet sockets nestle between the antennae, and a WPS button enables pairing.

Basic management tasks can be performed via the ZTELink mobile app, but this is confusingly laid out, and quite limited in its functions. You can browse connected clients, activate WPS pairing and get notifications when a new device joins the network, but for advanced configuration you need to use the web portal.

This also opens with a rather confusing graphic, representing your network as three connected circles drawn with dotted lines. However, once you click on a button it switches to a much more navigable system of tabbed pages, from which you can configure things like wireless channels, port forwarding, address reservation and per-device QoS priority.

Whichever interface you choose, you’ll look in vain for swanky extras such as VPN support, parental controls or network security. The Miracle AX3000 Pro’s only really advanced feature is a mesh mode, which lets you connect multiple units together and manage them from a single console.

Buy now from ZTE Devices

ZTE Miracle AX3000 Pro review: Performance

According to the spec sheet, the Miracle router can handle Wi-Fi connections at up to 2.4Gbits/sec on the 5GHz band. However, the performance you actually see is certain to be much slower, thanks to pesky factors such as interference and physical obstacles.

To see how the ZTE Miracle AX3000 Pro shapes up in a real-world domestic setting, I put it through my usual tests. I connected the router to the internet modem in my study, and hooked up an Asustor Drivestor 4 Pro NAS appliance to one of its Ethernet ports. I then carried my test laptop to various rooms in my home, copied a set of 100MB files to and from the NAS and measured average transfer speeds in each location. Here are the results I saw, along with speeds from a selection of other routers for comparison.

MB/secBathroom downloadBedroom downloadKitchen downloadLiving room downloadStudy download
ZTE Miracle AX3000 Pro10.515.89.639.760.9
D-Link R15 Eagle Pro AI10.317.220.545.952.9
TP-Link Archer AX5315.521.117.55262.4
Asus TUF Gaming AX540011.452.947.173.187.7
Asus RT-AX82U28.363.257.78384.4
Netgear Nighthawk RAXE30026.949.536.9111.8125.4

MB/secBathroom uploadBedroom uploadKitchen uploadLiving room uploadStudy upload
ZTE Miracle AX3000 Pro3.412.57.925.830.2
D-Link R15 Eagle Pro AI4.599.817.215.1
TP-Link Archer AX5348.
Asus TUF Gaming AX5400718.816.527.527.6
Asus RT-AX82U8.717.317.324.124.7
Netgear Nighthawk RAXE3008.412.911.82526.3

Clearly, not all Wi-Fi 6 routers are created equal. There’s a marked division in performance between the class of sub-£100 routers and those costing upwards of £150.

This doesn’t necessarily damn the AX3000 Pro, however. It still projected a strong wireless signal to every part of my three-bedroom maisonette, and it drew a moderate 13.4W while doing so, dropping to 9.7W when sitting idle. That’s perfectly acceptable for everyday internet duties.

To put my performance figures into context, Zoom recommends that you need only 4Mbits/sec for a video call – equivalent to 0.5MB/sec – and even streaming 4K UHD video from Disney Plus only requires 25Mbits/sec, or just over 3MB/sec. In other words, the Miracle router proved perfectly fast enough to allow multiple family members to watch videos and chat online at once. 

You may also note, however, that the TP-Link Archer AX53 gave me faster download speeds in every location. The margin wasn’t big enough to really transform the online experience, and the AX53 still didn’t come close to challenging pricier routers from Asus and Netgear. But a little extra speed can only be a good thing, especially since the Archer is almost exactly the same price as the ZTE.

READ NEXT: Our full round-up of the best wireless routers available

ZTE Miracle AX3000 Pro review: Should you buy it?

The ZTE Miracle AX3000 Pro has a lot in common with the old Honor Router 3, but it doesn’t have the same wow factor. The market has moved on, and the promise of a Wi-Fi 6 router for under £80 is no longer exceptional. Indeed, the TP-Link Archer AX53 provides a faster connection for the same price, plus a VPN server and TP-Link’s optional HomeShield service.

Yet the ZTE still has its appeal. It’s attractive to look at, and not unpleasant to use, as long as you don’t expect too much from the app. Yes, there are any number of faster routers, but for a medium-sized household with medium-sized internet demands it’ll do a fine job.

Buy now from ZTE Devices

Read more