Overall and Final Verdict
The move from Gigabit to faster interfaces has already happened in a lot of big datacenters, but when it comes to smaller businesses and especially homes it isn’t as prolific. That isn’t to say that you can’t benefit from the upgrade. Like I mentioned earlier, 1G networks may not be a limitation for most internet service just yet but it is coming. More importantly, if you are moving files around internally, even just a single hard drive can max out that connection, let alone if you are running an SSD or an M.2 NVMe SSD. Portable SSDs are gaining in popularity because of the speeds they can offer but for a lot of situations that requires too much moving drives around, not to mention you lose a lot of data security where on network you can automate at least some redundancy.
The ECS2512FP is an interesting option because this specific model isn’t offering a wall of ports. So it isn’t exactly what you would be looking for to change over a full office or in my case a house with a LOT of wiring. But it does look like a great network backbone option in those situations. You can tie in with other switches at 10G with the built-in SFP+ ports and then connect to your NAS and servers at 2.5G. Or if it is a small office, connect the server at 10G and each end-user has a 2.5G connection. Here soon you could even run edge switches powered by PoE at 2.5G for more of a hub and spoke network layout. But right now most of those options are only 1G.
Either way, the ECS2512FP or the 12/24/and 48 port variations allow people to dip their toes into faster network speeds with 2.5G as well as have 10G options over fiber or copper with SFP+. Which ironically is one of the only downsides I ran into with the switch as well. 2.5G is only recently making it to consumer hardware and 10G is even rarer. So if you are looking to upgrade transfer speeds to the end-user you may need to also plan on upgrading NICs as well. But the ECS2512FP has everything else covered, including PoE+ on all of the ports and a lot of overhead for power. I was also impressed once again with how EnGenius has made setup quick and easy with their app, on the go accessible with the cloud, but still allows full control with the local GUI as well.
Now being an enterprise switch and given the 2.5G, PoE, and SFP+ the price of the ECS2512FP isn’t exactly cheap. Really, pricing for all switches is always a little surprising. This 8 port option will run you around $647 which isn’t overpriced when compared with other Layer 2 switches with similar features. In fact, if you were to compare it with the DMS-1100-10TS from D-Link or the TEG-30102WS from TP-Link, which both have half the SFP+ ports and aren’t PoE at all at a similar price point the ECS2512FP starts to look more like a value.
Live Pricing: HERE