How much does OpenVPN ecryption on AR300M slow down speed?

I’m trying to get to the bottom of a BIG hit on speed using my AR300M running it’s openVPN configuration to feed into an Apple TV.

The speed coming into the router with no VPN activated is around 25mbps. Knocked down to 4-7mbps with openVPN active.

This is the case with 3 different VPN services (PIA, NordVPN, and now ExpressVPN).

I’ve been advised that the encryption within the router is probably causing the slowdown. But would it be that much?

I’ve also been advised that my ISP doesn’t like udp very much, or there may be something else going on in my hub settings (I have a BT Home Hub 5).

Any knowledge, experience or thoughts on this subject would be appreciated. I’m successfully using expressVPN’s smart DNS settings on the apple TV with much success. However there are some apps that don’t work without geo-locational info that exist with the VPN servers.

Basically my hope is to achieve normal speeds with a much smaller hit using the VPN servers.


Hi there, you are not gonna get you full speed of 25 mbps over VPN when using the mini router with VPN.
I don’t have the AR300M but the MT300M-V2, mine is actually a bit less powerfull then yours (mine 580Mhz SoC, your 650MHz CPU).

I have a about 100mbps (over lan), when using the router without VPN. I get about 30 mbps over WIFI (this is because of the 2.4 GHz WIFI). With VPN (over WIFI) i get about 6-10 mbps download and upload 3-6 mbps.
I use TCP with ProtonVPN/NordVPN, both are similar in the speed.

UDP is faster then TCP but not as save (I read some where, I think on nordVPN) but I have not jet tested UDP.

Also there is a simulary topic:

and here

and more there is even more.

mini router are not fast with VPN (that’s what I figured out here/read here)

Right. Well that makes it seem like it’s the router. A shame, but I guess you can’t expect the world from such a great little mini-router.

But are bigger more robust routers free of that slowdown I wonder?

And now I’m digressing I suppose, but I wonder if using open VPN is slower than some other method (like the native apps use–which I don’t really know if that’s the case?). And are other routers, flashed or pre-configured, using such other methods?

Ultimately I just want a fast connection from a router with VPN feeding into my apple TV

I think if you want a router that can do VPN with over 25 mbps you need to spend alot more, like 200 euro +, or you buy dedicate router hardware/firewall (not a small router with a small CPU, but the “REAL” thing server admin uses) but they also cost 300 Euro +, and a difficult to set up but even on thought I don’t know how fast they are. I’m interested to hear what my brother will say when he is done with setup.

Even the new coming router from Gl-iNet GL-AR750S-Ext / Slate - GL.iNet
GL-AR750S-EXT (Slate) - GL.iNet Docs
“only” does 17 mbps:

Yes you can use the native app.
I wanted the same as you, use the mini router for VPN, but I noticed just like you, that it is to slow, I have 100 mbps and down to 6-9 mbps is NOT okay.
So I continue to use openVPN on my pc (linux) it’s easy to start and I have no problem what so ever (not like on windows…). But I still use the mini router for VPN, because I noticed that my smartphone battery is way faster empty when I’m connected to VPN “all” day long (it dos not last one day xD). So at home I use the mini router with VPN for smartphone and tablet, there 6-9 mbps are ok.

same slow-down here. From 50 mbps down to 6-8 mbps with OpenVPN. Two things I will test to speed it up:

  1. vyprVPN is said to be faster than other VPN providers. Has anybody experience with vyprVPN?
  2. try another protocol on my AR750. l2tp is in beta currently. I hope this will be finalized and released soon and will speed up the VPN connection.
  1. vyprVPN is said to be faster than other VPN providers. Has anybody experience with vyprVPN?

If the CPU of your router only is capiable of 6-8 mbps then it dosn’t matter if the VPN service you are using can do, 50 mbps, 100 mbps or even faster.
I have 100 mbps and nordVPN, Protonvpn and pureVPN (don’t use pureVPN because of leaks and logging) does not slow my internet down, it is still between 85-95 mbps

  1. try another protocol on my AR750. l2tp is in beta currently. I hope this will be finalized and released soon and will speed up the VPN connection.

I2tp might be faster, but openVPN is more secure, UDP is faster then TCP, but TCP is more secure. So yes you can probably get faster speed but with less security (I’m no expert and this is only what I read on VPN homepages).

If you want fast VPN you need more CPU power, more CPU power means more money to spend.
If you have 200 USD/Euro to spare, you can get an dedicated VPN router with official support from nordVPN, but I don’t know if the router can do 50 mbps or more. You need to do research.

You might try to use wireguard. Faster than openVPN.

Yes, the AR300M has a 650MHz 32bit processor without hardware crypto. This is why it can run on 5volts @ 1amp :wink: Max speed I’ve seen with OpenVPN is about 8Mbit with a strong tail wind. :slight_smile:

I’ve done some testing with WireGuard VPN with it, and It will do about 50MBit. I didn’t get it quite running right, so I am waiting for the new GL-Inet firmware which is said to have it included, and should be released soon (Next month??)! I suggest holding off and checking out providers that support WireGuard like Mullvad.

That’s great info. thanks! It looks like it’s still early days for wireguard though, but that’s definitely what I’m looking for. In the meantime what do you think the minimum processor stats should be to minimize speed reduction? And is hardware encryption crucial? Just trying to avoid spending big bucks on a router. Won’t even be using it for wifi–just to feed into the ATV.

WireGuard is a lot closer than that. I can’t give you stats on other routers.
It seems mostly Intel chips have the hardware support for the crypto OpenVPN supports… which falls in line with the prices of the specialized hardware @JonnyJaap mentioned above. If you have an old laptop around (and time) it will work. Other than that - I think that is off topic from this forum and suggest you head over to the OpenWRT forum and see what hardware they are using to achieve the speeds you desire with OpenVPN.