Today we are going to review the cheapest 8-port 10GbE switch we could find, the TP-Link TL-ST1008F (V1). This switch retails for about $166 on AliExpress with free (slow) shipping. A lot of our readers use SFP+ for 10GbE and the supply of other switches in this class like the MikroTik CRS309-1G-8S+IN is tight right now. So we found a switch that is only around $20-21/ port and wanted to see if it is any good.
TP-Link TL-ST1008F Hardware Overview
We already reviewed the 2.5GbE causing of this switch, in the Cheapest 2.5GbE 8-port Switch TP-Link TL-SH1008 Review. Patrick, our Editor-in-Chief, wanted to do one combined video instead of two so here that is:
As always, we suggest opening that in its own YouTube browser, tab, or app for a better viewing experience. We demonstrate the power consumption in more detail in the video.
The front of the unit has the switch’s model number and a power LED like the 2.5GbE version, but these are on opposite sides from its cousin. This time we find an oddly placed CE sticker on the front of the all-metal chassis.
The unit that we are looking at is the V1. This you can see on the label on the bottom of the switch. We will note that there is supposed to be a V2 version, but V1 is what we just got a few weeks ago. We do not know how to ensure you get V2. V2 is supposed to be better with things like running at multi-gigabit speeds. You can see more on V1 v. V2 in the STH forums here.
The main side of the switch has eight SFP+ 10GbE ports. There is also a 12V 2A DC power input. On the left side, there are the link and activity lights. The link lights seemed to work, but they were not consistent and did not seem to indicate activity nor link speed.
This is a fan-less switch, so we just have simple venting on the side of the metal switch and no fan in the chassis. We will note that this does not have a typical 3 or 4 screw mounting pattern for adding rackmount ears, so it is really a desktop unit.
The switch chip here is the Realtek RTL9303 which you can find more on here. Technically, this is a L3 managed switch chip, but this is an unmanaged switch. The managed versions cost more, but you can find them.
We can also see the SFP+ cages at the bottom. Overall these worked well and were cooled as we would expect.
Next, let us get to performance before discussing power consumption.
TP-Link TL-ST1008F Performance
In terms of performance, we simply hooked up 2x Intel X710-da4 cards via DACs to the switch and just bounced iperf3 traffic from port to port.
Here we saw decent speeds just passing simple traffic over the unmanaged switch. This is exactly what we would expect in this market segment.
Next, let us get to the power consumption and noise.