Radxa E25 carrier board, 2.5 GbE switch and WiFi 6 router

Just received first sample of Radxa E25 dual 2.5GbE carrier board for Radxa CM3 Plus (RK3568) system-on-module, TP-Link 2.5GbE switch and Xiaomi AX6000 WiFi 6+2.5 router GbE.

Here’s the back story before we review the devices. I will soon have to review the UP Xtreme i11 Mini PC with a 2.5GbE port, and after writing about the upcoming ROCK5 Model B SBC with 2.5GbE and WiFI 6/6E, I realized that I should really have hardware to test 2.5 GHz. and WiFi 6. So I started asking what might be the best options for a $200 budget. Thinking about it, I remember Radxa was working on the Radxa E23 board with 2.5 GbE, and adding a USB WiFi 6 dongle might be an option. But they told me the Radxa E25 would be a better option with two 2.5GbE ports and WiFi 6 support, although this one is tricky because the AX1800 dissipates 10W.

When I told them my main goal was to get some hardware to test 2.5 GbE and WiFi 6, Radxa just offered to send the same hardware they used with the Mi AX3000 router and a 2.5 switch GbE. A hard offer to decline, so here we go…

I even got an upgrade with a brand new Xiaomi AX6000 router. I will look.

Radxa E25 board

Radxa E25 carrier board

Radxa haven’t published the specs on the wiki yet, just the schematics (for another board?) and CAD files, but the Radxa E25 preliminary specs are:

  • Supported SoMs – Radxa CM3 Plus with 2.0GHz quad-core Rockchip RK3568 Cortex-A55 processor with Arm Mali-G52, up to 8GB RAM, up to 128GB eMMC flash (250MB/s max ), optional WiFi and Bluetooth
  • Storage – MicroSD card slot, M.2 SATA SSD
  • Networking
    • 2 x 2.5GbE ports via Realtek RTL8125B 2.5Gbps Ethernet transceiver (Tested by Radxa at 2.2-2.3Gbps with above equipment)
    • Optional WiFi and Bluetooth support via mini PCIe socket
    • Optional 4G LTE/5G support via mini PCIe socket and SIM card slot
  • USB – 1x USB 3.0 OTG port, 1x USB Type-C port
  • Expansion
    • mini PCIe socket with SDIO, PCIe Gen 2.0 x1
    • M.2 Key M socket with SATA?
    • 10 pin GPIO header with UART, SPI, CAN Bus, I2C, I2S, etc…
  • Debug – 4-pin UART header for serial control
  • Miscellaneous – Power button, switch to select between USB 3.host and device mode
  • Power – 5V via USB-C port
  • Dimensions – Approx 72 x 66mm

Radxa E25 dual 2.5GbE card

Radxa CM3 Plus (RK3568)

Radxa CM3 Plus may look similar to Radxa CM3 module, but it comes with Rockchip RK3568 processor instead of RK3566, and is not compatible with Raspberry Pi CM4 module, with different dimensions and four board-to-board connectors to allow the additional I/O of the processor. My module comes with 2GB LPDDR4 (SKHynix) and 16GB eMMC flash (FORSEEE).

Radxa CM3 Plus carrier board

Radxa told CNX Software that they are still working on the heatsink and case tooling, and the board is pretty much ready, so we may get an official announcement in the next few months.

They envision the following use cases for the adapter/router:

  • USB 3.0 OTG to 2.5GbE network storage
  • Portable wireless storage with M.2 SATA SSD, mini PCIe AP WiFi card
  • Wireless router with 2.5GbE LAN and WAN, plus mini PCIe AP Wi-Fi card
  • Firewall via dual 2.5 GbE ports
  • 5G edge-to-cloud server when equipped with 5G mini PCIe card and M.2 SATA SSD
  • 4G LTE CPE/Gateway with 2.5 GbE LAN and WAN, one 4G M.2 module and one WiFi mini PCIe card

They tested the WiFi 6 AX1800, but the heat dissipation is currently being worked on. Debian and Ubuntu images are currently available for download for Radxa’s RK356x hardware platforms, including E25.

The switch I received is TP-Link TL-SH1008 with eight 2.5 GbE ports. It comes with a user manual and a 12V/1.5A power adapter.

TP Link TL-SH1008 TP-Link 8-Port 2.5GbE Switch

There are many other 2.5GbE switches on Amazon, but this particular model can be found for around $115 on Aliexpress.

Xiaomi Mi AX6000 Wi-Fi 6 Router

I had already written about the “Improved” Xiaomi Mi AX6000 WiFI 6 Router about a year ago, and you can find the specifications in this article, so let’s open the package.

Unboxing Xiaomi AX6000

The router is neatly packaged and comes with a 12V/2A power adapter and Cat 5e cable.

Mi WiFi 6 AX6000 Router

It looks pretty cool, and more importantly, its 2.5 GbE port can be used as a LAN or WAN port.

2.5GbE LAN WAN

This will allow me to test WiFi 6 over the 2.5 Gbps Ethernet connection, and with a WiFi 6 link of up to 4808 Mbps, I should be able to handle most customers who come to me for review without saturating the 2.5 interface. GbE.

AX6000 4804 Mbit/s

I don’t have any hardware with WiFi 6 yet, so I plan to test 2.5GbE first, except I don’t have any ethernet cables around where I am right now , so we will have to wait a bit…

Radxa E25 2.5GbE Switch - Xiaomi AX6000 WiFi 6 Router

The Xiaomi Mi AX6000 router sells for around $130 on sites like Aliexpress, so the complete setup with switch and router costs around $250. In future tests I will probably end up using Radxa E25 or UP Xtreme i11 connected to MINIX NEO S2 USB-C docking station with 240GB SSD to test network performance with iperf and SAMBA. Thanks again to Radxa for providing the material!