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D-Link DWA-X1850 Wi-Fi 6 Adapter

Nowadays, almost all devices that we use for work or pleasure are bound to have some level of network/internet connectivity. As a result, we have continually improved wireless technology in recent years, with many modern routers supporting 802.11ax, also referred to as Wi-Fi 6.

Wireless performance can exceed that of a wired 1GbE Ethernet connection, with this newer, faster and safer connection. Even though several Wi-Fi protocols vied for market dominance, most manufacturers have adopted Wi-Fi 6. While most routers come with Wi-Fi 6, the adoption of 802.11ax on client devices has lagged. 

Enter the DWA-X1850, a slim and compact wireless adapter that plugs into any USB port and provides instant connectivity to your laptop or PC. The DWA-X1850 comes with the latest 802.11ax Wi-Fi 6 technology, delivering smooth, reliable speeds up to AX1800 (574Mbps + 1200Mbps), which is ideal for large file transfers, online lessons, and gaming. 

Key Features

  • AX1800 speeds up to 574 Mbps (2.4 GHz) + 1200 Mbps (5 GHz)
  • Dual Band technology offers flexibility and versatility depending on your connectivity needs
  • 802.11ax protocol with OFDMA and MU-MIMO technologies ensure a fast and efficient Wi-Fi connection
  • The latest WPA3™ network security
  • Backwards compatibility to work with your existing wireless devices
  • AX delivers superior radio access efficiency
  • Auto installation driver for Windows 7/8.1/10 (Yup – No MacOS support)
  • Wi-Fi 6 USB 3.2 Gen 1 (USB 3.0) dongle delivers maximum performance and reliability

D-Link DWA-X1850 Design

With a nice glossy appearance and an embossed wave design, the DWA-X1850 device looks very modern. We find a lot of passive cooling vents on the external casing (likely to assist airflow in the fanless design). It doesn’t feel flimsy or fragile, but the casing feels a tad cheap.

Quite subtle and well incorporated into the shape is the angled vent design. Despite measuring 95.5 x 30 x 12.7mm, the size of this device is not significantly larger than most current/older-generation Wi-Fi 5 USB adapters. 

On the top, there is a single LED light that indicates system activity and connectivity. Due to the device’s USB power requirements, it is worth keeping in mind that for reasons of performance and power, the D-Link DWA-X1850 USB dongle will be of limited or no use in the USB 2.0 port.

The D-Link DWA-X1850 Wi-Fi 6 adapter’s USB A port is revealed when the bottom cap is removed. A USB-C version was not available at launch, which surprised me.

Closing Thoughts

No matter how you look at it, the D-Link DWA-X1850 is a truly revolutionary piece of hardware. When you understand what it can do, it makes sense why its price point is higher than 802.11a/n/ac adapters. 

The DWA-X1850 Wi-Fi 6 USB Dongle from D-Link occupies a unique place in the market and may well have removed one of the last obstacles to users converting to 802.11ax. 

DWA-X1850 is an unbeatable device right now for PC users and an easier alternative to fiddling with PCIe cards. Because it does not support MacOS at launch, Mac users are unfortunately out of luck.