Netgate SG-1100 Launched Higher-Speed Arm pfSense Firewall

Netgate SG 1100 Three Quarters Top
Netgate SG 1100 Three Quarters Top

A release you may have missed recently with all the CES news is the new Netgate SG-1100. The Netgate SG-1100 is a new Arm design for pfSense firewalls that is an enormous upgrade over the Netgate SG-1000. Starting at around $159, the new unit costs slightly more than the previous unit while bringing 3-5x more performance based on the company’s claims.

Netgate SG-1100 Arm-based pfSense Firewall

The new Netgate SG-1100 from the company behind pfSense, is based on the Marvell ESPRESSObin. As we can expect, there is a lot of Marvell onboard. That includes a dual-core 64-bit Marvell ARMADA 3720 ARMv8 CPU and a Marvell 88E6141. The Marvell 88E6141 is a networking switch which drives three 1GbE ports.

Netgate SG 1100 IO
Netgate SG 1100 IO

As a fairly big upgrade over the Netgate SG-1000, the Netgate SG-1100 includes 1GB of DDR4 RAM and an 8GB EMMC storage which is plenty for a basic firewall/ router. Inside there is one Mini PCIe slot a SATA port. On the exterior, aside from the three 1GbE ports there is one USB 3.0 port, one USB 2.0 port, and one console port via Micro USB.

Netgate SG 1100 Packet Filtering Performance
Netgate SG 1100 Packet Filtering Performance

The impact is significant. Netgate is showing 3-5x performance improvement from the SG-1000 to SG-1100. That takes the device from being more of an IPMI or lower-end networking device to being a higher-end competitor. From the performance figures, it still appears as that higher-end network appliances offer noticeably more performance, but this brings Arm-based low-cost units to more competitive positioning.

Netgate SG-1100 Key Specs

Here are the key specs for the Netgate SG-1100:

SoC Marvell Armada 3720LP (88F3720) dual-core ARM Cortex A53 processor @ 1.2GHz
System Memory 1 GB DDR4 RAM on board
Storage 8 GB EMMC
Network Interfaces 1x Marvell 88E6141 networking switch
3x GbE Ethernet (WAN/LAN/OPT)
1x Mini PCIe slot
USB 1x USB 3.0
1x USB 2.0
1x Micro USB port (console)
Misc Reset button, heatsink, 3 Status LED
Power 12V 2A DC 5.5mm x 2.1mm x 10mm jack, center pin positive (power over USB not supported)
Power Consumption 3.48W (idle)
Operating Temperature  0°C (32°F) to 45°C (113°F)
Enclosure Plastic 110 x 84.6 x 31.75 mm (4.33″ x 3.33″ x 1.25″)
Hardware Warranty 1 year standard. Second-year available only at time of purchase.
Certifications CE, FCC, RoHS



  1. Can you do a performance test where the WAN is connected to a PPPOE endpoint?
    FreeBSD (as well as Linux) has some major performance problems caused by PPPOE not using multiple queues for receive.

  2. It improves on the SG-1000 but quite underwelming.
    The ESPRESSObin was launched in 2016 and back then had a base price of $49 (for the full board with 2GB RAM)
    Now in 2019 they want to sell it for $159 with only 1GB RAM.
    ESPRESSObin was a very low end, very cheap product in 2016, what do call it in 2019?
    I am fine that Moore’s law is over, but do we need to move so slowly now? Hopefully ARM’s Neoverse will come for our rescue.

  3. They were selling the MBT-4220 with 2Gb RAM and 32Gb SSD a few weeks back for $199. Out of stock now but that was be 2-3x the performance for 25% more.

  4. These fisher price toys are ok for slow connections, if you u do not run addons, etc. Repurpose an old pc and save some $ vs this stuff.


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