Router internal switch

On Ubquiti’s edgerouter comparison page some routers are listed as having an internal switch others are not. Since all of them have have multiple ports that can be LAN, what is the difference between routers with and without an internal switch? Is it either type better than the other?

Routers with an internal switch (EdgeRouter, Mikrotik, NetGate - doesn’t matter what company) are somewhat more complicated to configure and use because the ports on the switch operate differently than the ones that are directly connected to the CPU. Internally the switch chip is connected to the CPU by something akin to an ethernet connection, and so that means the ports on the switch chip have to share bandwidth, and sometimes you have to take steps to make sure this internal port is configured properly. The benefit is that the router has more ports available for configuration than it would otherwise, without having the higher cost of a CPU that has more connections directly on it. For example with Mikrotik, the cheapest router that has all ports connected to the CPU without the use of switch chips is $425, all their cheaper (but still very powerful) routers have switch chips to provide more ports. EdgeRouters are more diverse in terms of what router price points do or don’t use a switch chip.


Thank you. Despite referring to Ubiquiti in my question it was not intended to be brand specific and your answer was exactly what I was looking for.