A versatile, yet competitively priced 2.5GbE managed switch that is an ideal choice to support a high-performance but power-hungry PoE focused network, as well as surveillance equipment.
The VigorSwitch PQ2200xb is a new managed switch from Draytek, and is perfect for businesses who are upgrading an existing network, or rolling out a new one. Key is the ability to supply up to 400W via PoE, which makes it an ideal backbone for cameras, VoIP phones, Wi-Fi access points, and more. The switch also includes a range of surveillance focused features that ensure it is well suited to supporting security cameras.
While the ethernet ports are 2.5GbE, it also has four SFP+ ports for high speed links, and offers up to 160 Gbps of overall switching capacity. Importantly, the PQ2200xb can be configured directly using its web interface, controlled with a DrayTek router, or managed through seperate software, such as Draytek’s own VigorACS 3.
The switch isn’t perfect, so read on as we put it to the test, and find out if it could suit your business. As always with Draytek products, you can try before you buy and test the interface and features yourself, thanks to a handy online demo.
While we tested it on a bench, the VigorSwitch PQ2200xb also comes with a rack mounting kit. (Image credit: Future / Lindsay Handmer)
The VigorSwitch PQ2200xb has four SFP+ ports, which enable high performance links at up to 10Gbps. (Image credit: Future / Lindsay Handmer)
DESIGN AND SPECIFICATIONS
The PQ2200xb is a rack mount switch, measuring in at 440mm x 281.3mm x 44mm, and with a weight of 4.3kg. Around the back it has an IEC power port, while the dual 40mm variable speed fans are side mounted, with a vent on the other side. In the box you get a rack mount kit, RJ-45 console cord, power cord, rubber feet and quick start guide. The switch will run from 100V through to 240V, and is rated for a maximum power consumption of 550 watts.
The PQ2200xb has a total of 21 ports on the front – 16 x 2.5Gbps Ethernet connections, four 10G SPF+ slots, and an RJ-45 console connection port. This combination provides a versatile overall mix of connection options that will suit many small to medium businesses. The 2.5GbE ports provide high network speeds that can cater for fast access, or moving a lot of data around, without the cost of stepping up to a 10Gbps network. The four SFP+ ports give the flexibility to create very high speed links, such as between switches, or to network attached data storage or servers. Overall this combination of ports allows the creation of a robust, high performance network, without excessively high upfront costs.
A key feature of the PQ2200xb is Power Over Ethernet, and the switch can supply up to 400W total over the 16 ethernet ports. Critically, four of these ports are PoE++, which means that they can supply up to 90W per port. This is enough for power hungry equipment, ranging from point of sale computers and laptops, to TVs and other large displays, video conferencing systems, or even building management systems such as gate or door controllers. The other 12 ethernet ports are PoE+, providing up to 30W and are well suited to running a range of typical devices, such as cameras, Wi-Fi APs, lighting and so on. The inclusion of four PoE++ is a great design choice, as it enables a range of higher power networking options to be run without installing a separate connection for electricity. One downside is the choice to only provide 400W total, as if all four PoE++ ports have higher power devices connected, there is little leftover for the 12 PoE+ connections. We would have preferred to see a minimum of 500W overall for this setup, to give enough headroom to at least get 10W to each PoE+ port, while still being able to push the PoE++ to the full 90W.
The PQ2200xb is well suited to surveillance needs, and can detect ONVIF capable devices and place them into individual VLANs, as well as allow direct image viewing and setting management through the switch interface. It can also monitor cameras (and other devices), give alerts if a camera stops responding, and cycle the power to try and restore it.
The PQ2200xb has the full range of features you’d expect from a managed switch (and too many to list them all here), including QoS controls, network conflict detection, network management and monitoring, port aggregation, IPv6 support, enterprise level security and more. The switch can handle 256 VLANs, works with a RADIUS or TACAS+ authentication server, has a 160Gbps switching capacity, and supports a 16k MAC address table. As we have come to expect from DrayTek, there are plenty of resources available online for the PQ2200xb. These range from the quick start guide, to the online demo mentioned earlier, firmware updates, the comprehensive 349 page manual, and an expansive general knowledge base.
The PQ2200xb has an in depth but robust web interface, but can also be managed with separate software. (Image credit: Future / Lindsay Handmer)
The PQ2200xb has a clean internal layout and excellent airflow, though the dual fan setup is somewhat noisy and inefficient. (Image credit: Future / Lindsay Handmer)
The PQ2200xb can be configured via a web browser, and the interface is straightforward and easy to use, despite the impressive depth of features. We tested the PQ2200xb with a range of other DrayTek devices, including Vigor routers and wireless access points. We also included an assortment of other devices on the network, from computers, servers, NAS and PoE security cameras.
Overall the PQ2200xb handled itself very well, and we had no problems testing all of the advertised functionality. Compared to lesser switches, the higher end features made network setup and management feel easy. For surveillance management, options such as the ability to ping network devices, and automatically power cycle them if using PoE, proved reliable, and an invaluable tool.
Maximum power usage of the PQ2200xb will depend on how many PoE devices are connected (and max input is 550W), but power draw starts from 20W at idle. Under little load the switch is silent, but once running, the dual 40mm fans are not especially quiet, and the switch is not shy about running them. The switch should live in a clean environment, but if the fans ever need to be changed, access is easy thanks to the removable cover.
The innards of the PQ2200xb are well laid out, with clean airflow and plenty of heatsinks. The fans used are quality SUNON dual ball bearing models, measuring in at 40mm x 20mm, and rated for 70,000 hours of use. The fans don’t feature PWM control, so are either on or off, which contributes to the noise. The fans are configured to blow air out of the switch, but the outer shell has a too small 37mm hole, which creates significant airflow obstruction. Despite this, the fans are more than powerful enough to ensure heat is not a problem, but is less efficient than it could be. The switch also has the space (and deleted fan plugs) for two more fans, so a lower speed, triple or quad fan option would have been preferable.
VigorACS 3 is a powerful TR-069 management solution from DrayTek, and you can even test it online for yourself. (Image credit: Future / Lindsay Handmer)
The PQ2200xb can be managed directly via its own interface (which is excellent), but can also be handled via a Vigor router, using DrayTek’s Central Switch Management. While this option works fine, the PQ2200xb supports TR-069 management for more comprehensive options. The free TR-069 based VigorConnect local network management software from DrayTek is quite good, and more than enough for simpler networks or smaller businesses.
DrayTek also has VigorACS – a paid network management option that has a wealth of features. It’s specifically designed to give the best possible support for all compatible DrayTek hardware. The software requires an annual subscription, and the price will depend on the number of network devices you want to be able to control.
VigorACS 3 is aimed at larger businesses that might have multiple switches, and a large number of other devices, and in our experience, doesn’t offer as much value for smaller networks. A key use for VigorACS 3 is to enable SD-WAN options, for connecting multiple sites, or making it easy and secure for remote workers to access the network.
Like the switch, VigorACS 3 has an online demo, which can be accessed using the account name “guest” and the password “guest12345”. If you do buy a Vigor device, DrayTek provides a 30 day free trial of VigorACS 3, so you can test it out on your own server and network.
VigorACS can be installed on a Windows or Linux server, locally or in the cloud, and doesn’t need particularly demanding specs unless the network is very large. One advantage is auto provisioning, where new devices can be added to the network, and are automatically configured and updated by the VigorACS server. It also makes it easy to remotely control and schedule updates to your network. There’s also a host of data collection, from real time status monitoring (and alerts if equipment goes down) through to stats such as performance logging and report creation. VigorACS also has a VPN Wizard, which helps make it easy to create and backup configurations, and make sure your remote workers can stay connected.
While it is not the only option for TR-069 management, VigorACS is a great match for DrayTek hardware, and well worth the cost for the time savings alone. There’s also a large VigorACS knowledge base of articles that make using it much easier.
That said, the pricing for VigorACS makes it comparatively expensive for smaller networks running just one or two switches, and the potential time savings won’t really materialize until managing a much larger network. In which case, the licencing option for a small number of nodes is aimed at businesses that need features such as SD-WAN.
DrayTek offers a comprehensive ecosystem of products, and the VigorSwitch PQ2200xb fills an important niche in the lineup. While it is a solid stand alone product for a small to medium business, to get the full benefit, it’s best used in a larger DrayTek based networking ecosystem. The PQ2200xb faces some competition in the market from other switches, but few combine the same feature set for a comparable price.
All in all, the PQ2200xb does everything it promises, and is a great option to combine high speed networking, and robust PoE functionality. While we wish the overall power budget was slightly higher, and the switch was slightly quieter, these are minor quibbles. For those businesses that need PoE, but not the 90W of PoE++, consider alternative DrayTek options, including the 28 port Gigabit PoE VigorSwitch P1282, or for 10GbE, the 28-port VigorSwitch P2280x.
- 20 port Layer 2+ Managed PoE Gigabit Switch
- 4 x Gigabit Ethernet PoE++ Ports (up to 90 Watts per port)
- 12 x Gigabit Ethernet PoE/PoE+ (802.3af/at), up to 30 Watts per port
- 4 x Gigabit RJ-45/SFP Combo Ports
- 1 x RJ-45 Console Port
- PoE power budget of 400 watts
- PoE Scheduling & Ping watchdog power cycle
- 160 Gbps switching capacity
- Port based and 802.1q tagged VLANs (MAC address, and protocol)
- Voice and Surveillance VLANS with QoS (OUI Mode) providing improved call and video quality
- ONVIF (Open Network Video Interface Forum) compliant
- QoS with 8 queues for traffic prioritisation
- Enterprise-Level security features
- 802.1x Port Security, ACL, IP Source Guard and DHCP Snooping
- Access Control (IPv4, IPv6 and MAC address)
- IP Conflict Prevention to avoid IP conflicts caused by misconfigured or malicious hosts
- Support IPv6 with MLD Snooping, IPv6 ACL, and IPv6 DNS Resolver
- Authentication by local database, multiple RADIUS, and TACACS+ servers
- IEEE 802.3az (Energy-Efficient Ethernet) Compliant
- Support SNMP v1/v2c/v3, RMON, and Syslog for network monitoring
- Port Mirroring & Link Aggregation
- Compliant with Central Switch Management features of DrayTek Vigor devices for simplified network management Learn more
- Compliant with VigorConnect free software for local network management Learn more
- Supports VigorACS 3 Central Management Software for remote management
- 2 years back to base warranty
2.5GbE L2+ Managed Switch with PoE++
DrayTek VigorSwitch PQ2200xb features 16 x 2.5GbE ports for LAN and 4 x 10G SFP+ for uplink/downlink. It has 4 x PoE++ ports providing up to 90W per port and 12 x PoE+ ports. With a total of 400W output, it is ideal for business applications with IoT devices, such as LED lighting, POS (point of sale) computer, sensors, IP cameras, etc.
When configured with WiFi6 VigorAPs (e.g., VigorAP 1060C), VigorSwitch PQ2200xb can bring full WiFi 6 capability and features to LAN clients. Furthermore, it supports advanced Layer 3 features, DHCP Server, and VLAN Routing, to improve network efficiency and ensure that the LAN network continues to work even if the gateway is offline. Therefore, this switch is well placed to be the core switch in most SME/SMB networks.
- Power Socket
- LED Indicator
- Reset Button
- Console Port
- 4 x PoE++ 2.5GbE Ports
- 12 x PoE+ 2.5GbE Ports
- 4 x SFP+ Ports
Recognise ONVIF devices in different VLANs, display surveillance topology, provide UI for video streaming and device maintenance
Centralised Hierarchical View
The VigorSwitch PQ2200xb automatically detects ONVIF devices and displays the topology of connected IP cameras and NVRs.
Images filmed by IP cameras can be viewed directly within the VigorSwitch PQ2200xb web UI.
Basic configuration/maintenance tasks for ONVIF devices such as remote reboot, factory reset and changing network settings can all be done remotely from the VigorSwitch PQ2200xb web UI.
ONVIF Snapshot Alert
Locating Non-Responding IP Cameras Made Easy
Managing a network of IP cameras across different locations is difficult, as when any of the cameras stop functioning, there is no easy way to detect or revive it. To help with this problem, the VigorSwitch PQ2200xb regularly pings ONVIF IP cameras and takes snapshots from them periodically. If one IP camera stops responding, an email alert is sent with the latest snapshot from the camera.
With PoE VigorSwitch models, the switch can also provide first aid by automatically power cycling the particular port to reboot the camera.
IP Conflict Detection & Prevention
The VigorSwitch constantly checks the network environment and notifies the administrator of any IP conflicts.
For a more stable network, the VigorSwitch detects misconfigured or malicious IP hosts and blocks them before damages are done.
Ping Check for LAN Devices
A VigorSwitch can continuously ping the LAN devices, and when the device stops responding to the ping, it will instigate a PoE cycle to the associated port (PoE model only) and/or send an email alert to the administrator.
An all-in-one management platform for Vigor devices on the LAN side.
Automatic Device Discovery
Connect a Vigor Switch or AP to the LAN side of the Vigor Router, and the router will auto-discover the device to allow it to be managed.
Basic settings may be done on the Vigor Router, and then provisioned to the managed Vigor Switches or APs.
The Vigor Router provides a centralized view of managed devices, so you can monitor and check the status of Vigor Switches or APs connected.
Perform factory resets, save/restore configuration backups, or trigger reboots remotely from the Vigor Router’s interface. There is no need to log in to each device’s management page.
|Central Switch Management
Deliver up to 90W over one Ethernet cable. Turn on/off the PoE device periodically with PoE Schedule.
QoS (Quality of Service)
Improve the performance of critical traffic by prioritizing the traffic with CoS, DSCP, and IP Precedence tag.
Ping Device Check
Enable Ping check to selected devices to keep monitoring on their status. If ping timeout, power cycle (if PoE enabled) the port and/or send out mail alert.
Auto Surveillance & Voice VLAN
Recognise traffic from IP cameras and IP phones automatically and add CoS tag for QoS prioritization.
Recognise ONVIF devices, display surveillance topology, provide UI for video streaming and device maintenance. Learn more
Provides higher performance to WiFi 6 AP and other Ethernet devices.
VigorSwitch PQ2200xb supports IPv6 by offering MLD Snooping, IPv6 ACL, and IPv6 DNS Resolver.
Provides 10G-capable fiber SFP+ ports for aggregation or uplinking to the core switches.
Easily manage and monitor the network through the web-based console with graphics showing ports and hardware status. See demo
Wire-Speed VLAN Routing
Improve overall network performance by using VigorSwitch PQ2200xb to route the inter-VLAN traffic directly and offload the router.
Multiple Admin Accounts
Multiple Admin accounts with two levels of administrator privilege.
Central Switch Management
Set up VLAN easily from the router and get a centralized hierarchy view of the switches. Learn more
IP Conflict Prevention
Improve network stability by avoiding IP conflicts caused by a misconfigured or malicious host. Learn more
The throughput figures are maximum, based on DrayTek internal testing with optimal conditions. The actual performance may vary depending on the different network conditions and applications activated.