The Ultimate Cheap 10GbE Switch Buyers Guide

17
Hasivo S1100WP 8XGT SE PoE Front
Hasivo S1100WP 8XGT SE PoE Front

We wanted to put some of our 10GbE content into a Buyer’s Guide, much like we have done with the Cheap Fanless 2.5GbE Switch Guide. As a result, we are creating this resource to at least put everything together in a single spot. We have done many switch reviews over the years, so we had to put a few filters on this one. First, we are only looking at switches with either SFP+ or 10Gbase-T as their primary (highest quantity) port type. We have reviewed many 1GbE and 2.5GbE switches with 10GbE onboard, but if a switch has 48x 1GbE and 4x SFP+ ports, we are calling that a 1GbE switch instead.

The Ultimate Cheap 10GbE Switch Buyers Guide

We are going to make this a bit of a living document. We are starting with just listing the 10GbE switch reviews one of our new team members found. There may be ones that we missed.

MikroTik CRS305 Atop CRS309 Front View
MikroTik CRS305 Atop CRS309 Front View

The next question is, what is the taxonomy? 10Gbase-T, SFP+, Mixed, and then Unmanaged and Managed sub-categories? For now, we are just listing a few of them, starting with some of the more recent ones. It is amazing to see we spend $8000 on a STH lab switch from QCT back in 2016, and now we are seeing 8-port 10Gbase-T switches for closer to 1/40th the price.

MikroTik CRS317 1G 16S+RM Front
MikroTik CRS317 1G 16S+RM Front

Another question, of course, is what qualifies as “cheap”? Is a $3800 switch in a $8000 segment “cheap?” Is it only $300, $500, $1000?

Nicgiga S100 0800T Front
Nicgiga S100 0800T Front

Here is what we have thus far. We will be adding to this list as we work through the next set of reviews. We will also be changing the organization once we start getting a few more switches on the list.

Final Words

We have a set of switches that are being tested now. So, we expect to have well over a dozen and a half switches by the end of the year. It felt like this would be the time to make a larger Buyer’s Guide for our 10GbE content, and it was a good research project. We can now use this to point to.

FS N5860 48SC Cover Image
FS N5860 48SC Cover Image

For those worried that we are just going to focus on 10GbE switches, do not fear. We have 100GbE, 25GbE, PoE++, switch reviews coming soon, and even a 64-port 800GbE switch review that we will hopefully get to in the week following our first publishing this guide. For things like our 400GbE and 800GbE content, those switches are still expensive enough that we do not have enough reviews to make a Buyer’s Guide useful yet. In the next few months, this will be a great resource for 10GbE networking, so it may be worth bookmarking.

17 COMMENTS

  1. Some Mikrotik switches listed here can do wirespeed routing, inter-vlan routing, the CRS317 can even do some NAT.

  2. I recently picked up a Sodola SL-SWTGW2C8F for my house. The goal was to have a cheap, cool, fanless 10Gb core switch for the rack at home (mostly DACs), with just enough management to do some very basic stuff with VLANs. Recommended, if you don’t need top-end speeds or deep management options. I felt like I needed to block the management IP from accessing the Internet, though…

  3. Used Catalyst 9300 24UX-E can be had for around the same as the Ubiquiti switch. All native copper ports, 8 more ports, can add expansion modules(1/10g copper or sfp+) for “cheap” since they reused 3850/3750 expansion modules, UPOE, and have better layer 3 capability. Ubiquiti is an okay stepping stone if wanting a entry level layer 3 with a bunch of painful caveats, but likely better capability options for comparable prices on the used market.

  4. In the summary buyers guide above you have the MikroTik CRS305-1G-4S+IN Listed as 5sfp+ but it is 4 SFP+ and a 1G management port.

    Clearly covered as such in your detailed review. Also I bought one because of that some time ago. I wish it did have a 5th SPF+ port! Ha. Just helping clear it up for this guide. Thanks for all you guys do!

  5. The answer to what does cheap mean, at least to regular people like myself, it probably means sub $50 ish and we’re not there yet, especially when the closest to that are SFP+ devices which then need DACs or insanely expensive transceivers to get to 10Gbase-T

  6. Missing Aruba instant on 12xgt, very capable and cheap switch

    Unifi xg lite, unifi xg 6 poe too

    All under £600 ex VAT

  7. For me, “cheap” 10GbE (preferrably multiGbE capable) is sub $30/port.

    An 8-port multiGbE for $240 or less. Willing to double that for PoE++ support, but that’s as far as my definition of “cheap” goes.

    So far, the most recent NICGIGA switch review is the only one I would qualify as cheap, and it only got to that range with just a world of caveats. (No UL listing, QC that makes you cry, etc.)

    Would love for more multiGbE competition to appear in that sub $300 market. While 10GbE is the goal, long runs, CAT6 in-wall wiring, etc. can all mean the NICs might need to negotiate at 5GbE in real world conditions.

    I would much prefer that to “10GbE is out, gotta drop to 1GbE” of traditional 1/10 GbE switches.

  8. Problem with the 10 GB switches is : mix of RJ45 ports and SFP ports and POE availability.

    You can get 8-16 RJ45 ports in 10 GB but no POE under $1500 with only 2-4 SFP+ ports.
    OR 8-16 SFP+ ports , no POE at all and 1-4 RJ45 ports.

    to overcome a expensive setup you have to double up the sfp+ switch with a Rj45 POE switch, in the variety of ports needed.

    i had a 2 Cisco SG200 26P switches with 2 CRS305 SFP switches for the Link and the NAS traffic.
    Now i switched to 2 Cisco SG350X 26 P – 4 Sfp+ (2nd hand $120-$400) and the CRS305 ‘s are obsolete.

    Only Mikrotik and Draytek PQ2200 PB with 2.5 Gb ports and 4 SFP+ ports for under $800 are competative

  9. @James Do these switches negotiate down if the cable is bad? I thought the negotiation was done based on reported capabilities at link time – if both ends report 10G then you get 10G, and if the cable isn’t good enough then you get lots of dropped packets which reduce the effective bandwidth – but those packets that do make it through went at 10G. You’d have to manually set the link to 5G or less if you wanted to. Of course lots of older equipment doesn’t support 5G or 2.5G so in that case if one end doesn’t support 10G, the next available option both ends have in common would be 1G.

    Re the switches I think the MikroTik 4x 100G switches should be included in the 10G and 25G reviews, because with their breakout cables they can do 16x 10G/25G ports and they are still cheaper and more capable than some of the other 10G switches.

  10. Summary for the FS N5860-48SC says 48x 10Gbase-T. The attached article and picture shows it is 48x SFP+.

  11. I got a Mikrotik CRS326-24S+2Q+RM recently and I’m very happy with it for the price. Would I like to see something else than 2 QSFP+ ports in 2024, sure – but for the price it works well for my needs.

  12. Seems rather odd you have not included the Zyxel XS1930-12HP in your list. It sells MSRP for $749.99 in Amazon, but I got mine on Thanksgiving 2023 for $599.99 plus tax. While not inexpensive, for that price of $599.99 it has everything I wanted!

    It is a very nice switch with 12 total ports and POE++

    The ports are distributed as follows:
    8X 10G PoE++ @ 375W, 2X 10G Ethernet, 2X 10G SFP+

  13. Patrick – I know the Zyxel is on the pricier side, but November is coming so people may consider it if they drop the price again. I learned about many switches on your site, it is about the only resource with some good options I have found. I wanted to contribute to others who may not be afraid to spend a bit more.

    Another option could be this one (which someone in a review of the Zyxel talked about, I have no experience with it): Engeniustech ECS5512FP

    They claim it is the same reference design used on the Zyxel by a different company, however it has 8 10G PoE copper ports and four SFP+. The manufacturer has it right now listed at $549 MSRP on their website, but sold out.

    If you search for the brand and model above you will find the link easily. I did not want to put a link here.

  14. Hello Patrick and Rohit :-)
    Suggestion: Could you please include whether the switches support 2.5 and 5 gig speeds as well?
    I think those n-baseT speeds add a lot to the usability of 10gig ports in a home/branch/lab.

    Thanks so much for being a great resource!

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.