In the digital age, where an Internet connection is as important as electricity, choosing the right Wi-Fi router has become crucial for every home and business. As John K. Waters, a technology expert and author of numerous publications on networking, notes, „A Wi-Fi router is not only the gateway to the Internet, but also the foundation of a digital home’s security.” In 2023, the Wi-Fi router market is dominated by models that offer not only speed and range, but also advanced security features, ease of management and smart home solutions.
In our „Best Wi-Fi routers 2023” ranking, we present devices that stand out from the competition, offering users not only reliability and performance, but also innovative features.
The „Best Wi-Fi Routers 2023” ranking is a guide to the best devices available on the market that meet a variety of user needs – from simple solutions for small apartments to advanced systems for large spaces and demanding business applications. Take a look at our recommendations to help you choose the perfect router for your needs.
1. Best router WiFi for home
The Synology WRX560 is a sophisticated router designed for rapid Wi-Fi connectivity. On its left side, it features a USB 3.2 Gen 1 (5 Gbps) port, alongside two buttons for managing the wireless function and enabling WPS. However, the presence of only a single USB port might restrict the capabilities of the SRM operating system, which is integral to this router’s functionality.
At the rear, the WRX560 is equipped with five RJ45 ports, four supporting 1 Gbps and one offering 2.5 Gbps speeds. Despite its advanced technology, the router’s selection of ports may necessitate certain trade-offs.
This router’s technical profile includes a range of features: network standards, types of antennas, processor specifications, RAM capacity, USB compatibility, supported protocols, various ports, buttons, and additional functionalities like Beam Shaping, OFDMA, Quality of Service (QoS), parental controls, and a firewall.
Compliant with Wi-Fi 6 standards, the WRX560 incorporates cutting-edge technologies such as OFDMA and WPA-3 encryption. The Synology SRM system provides a robust and user-friendly interface, enabling network configuration, file sharing, virtual network creation, VPN management, and secure network usage with the Safe Access package.
Pros of the Synology WRX560 Router:
- User-friendly and functional due to the Synology SRM system.
- Consistent performance and reliability.
- Extended software update support for up to five years.
- Enhanced performance with Wi-Fi 6 technology.
- Connectivity via 2.5 GbE.
- Superior construction quality.
- Effective parental controls.
- Support for USB 3.2 Gen 1.
Cons of the Synology WRX560 Router:
- Restricted number of 2.5 GbE and USB ports.
- Absence of options for wall or ceiling mounting.
2. Best wireless router for large home
Netgear Nighthawk RAX50 (AX5400)
The Netgear Nighthawk RAX50, leveraging the cutting-edge Wi-Fi 6 (802.11ax) technology, stands out as a top-tier wireless router. It’s particularly well-suited for expansive homes, offering remarkable speed, extensive range, and superior performance. This router ensures robust signal coverage, courtesy of its four potent external antennas and beamforming technology, which focuses the signal straight to the connected devices. It boasts an impressive speed capacity of up to 6 Gbps, making it adept at handling numerous devices at once – a vital feature for homes bustling with multiple users and gadgets. The RAX50 is further enhanced with top-notch security measures, including Netgear Armor, safeguarding your network against digital threats. Additionally, its user-friendly setup and management via the Netgear Nighthawk app make it a highly regarded choice among both tech experts and home users who prioritize stability, extensive range, and sophisticated networking capabilities.
The Netgear Nighthawk RAX50 excels with its support for the advanced Wi-Fi 6 standard, offering several benefits but also presenting certain limitations. Here’s an overview:
Pros of the Netgear Nighthawk RAX50:
- Employs Wi-Fi 6 (802.11ax) technology.
- Exceptional speed and range capabilities.
- Equipped with five Gigabit Ethernet ports.
- Simplified setup and management process.
- Enhanced with advanced security features.
Cons of the Netgear Nighthawk RAX50:
- Higher price point.
- Larger device size.
- May present a learning curve for beginners.
- Netgear Armor subscription: Certain advanced security features necessitate a paid subscription post-trial period.
3. The fastest WIFI router
The RT-AX89X is a cutting-edge Wi-Fi 6 router, boasting 12 streams and integrating MU-MIMO and OFDMA technologies. It operates under the latest Wi-Fi 6 (802.11ax) standard, delivering a remarkable combined speed of up to 6,000 Mbps. This router is uniquely designed with dual 10 G ports, encompassing both a 10 GBase-T port and a 10 G SFP+ port, ensuring rapid data transfers. It is outfitted with eight antennas and eight LAN ports, enabling simultaneous support for numerous devices.
Furthermore, the RT-AX89X is fortified with AiProtection Pro, a commercial-grade security solution powered by Trend Micro. This feature provides comprehensive protection against internet threats for all devices connected to the network. The router’s use of OFDMA and MU-MIMO technologies enhances network capacity, making it ideal for areas with high device density. The Wi-Fi 6 standard optimizes bandwidth utilization, and the division of channels into smaller sub-channels extends the Wi-Fi signal range.
Equipped with a robust 2.2 GHz quad-core processor, the RT-AX89X ensures a stable and fluid connection, perfect for both gaming and professional tasks throughout your home. The ASUS AiMesh compatibility allows for the expansion of your Wi-Fi network, ensuring complete coverage. This router is not just about high speeds; it also guarantees network security and consistent stability.
Pros of the RT-AX89X Router:
- Employs Wi-Fi 6 Standard for optimal performance.
- Ultra-fast Wi-Fi: 12 streams at a total of 6000 Mbps, ideal for handling densely populated networks.
- Dual 10 G ports: Features both 10 GBase-T and 10 G SFP+ ports for data transfer speeds up to ten times faster, perfect for high-demand tasks.
- Enhanced Connectivity: Equipped with 8 antennas and 8 LAN ports, it supports more devices concurrently.
- Top-tier, commercial-grade security.
- Compatible with mesh networking for extensive coverage.
- Superior Wi-Fi coverage and home network security.
- Consistently stable Wi-Fi connection.
Cons of the RT-AX89X Router:
- Higher price point.
- Considerable size and weight.
4. Best router in price vs. quality ratio
Router TP-LINK Archer AX53
The TP-LINK Archer AX53 router is the optimal choice for those seeking the best balance between price and quality. The device is designed to provide superior wireless connectivity, complying with the advanced Wi-Fi 6 (802.11ax) standard. It offers impressive data speeds, reaching up to 2402 Mbps in the 5 GHz band and 574 Mbps in the 2.4 GHz band, providing fast and reliable Internet access.
Incorporating state-of-the-art OFDMA and MU-MIMO technologies, the Archer AX53 is ideal for multi-device environments, facilitating more efficient and simultaneous data transmission. Its design includes four external antennas, significantly increasing Wi-Fi range and signal stability, a key factor in maintaining consistent connectivity.
The Archer AX53 features Airtime Fairness technology, which prevents network congestion caused by older devices, ensuring that transmission time is shared fairly among all connected gadgets.
For those who require wired connections, the router offers one Gigabit Ethernet WAN port and four Gigabit Ethernet LAN ports, meeting the needs of high-speed wired Internet. The router’s versatility is enhanced by the presence of a USB port for local network file sharing or remote access via an FTP server.
Security is paramount with the TP-LINK Archer AX53 router, which supports WPA3, the latest Wi-Fi encryption, offering robust protection against brute-force attacks. What’s more, advanced Quality of Service (QoS) features allow users to prioritize network traffic, which is essential for smooth video streaming or online gaming.
Ease of management is another key aspect of this router. Compatibility with the TP-Link Tether app allows easy configuration and management of the network from a mobile device, simplifying the process of adjusting network settings, controlling Internet access and monitoring bandwidth usage.
All in all, the TP-LINK Archer AX53 is a technologically advanced router, ideal for the home and small office, offering high performance, stable connectivity and a feature set that stands out in its price category.
Pros of the TP-LINK Archer AX53 router:
- Wi-Fi 6 (802.11ax) compatibility for higher speeds.
- Four external antennas to increase Wi-Fi coverage and stability.
- Beamforming technology for targeted signal strength.
- Gigabit Ethernet ports for high-speed wired connections.
- Comprehensive security features, including WPA3 encryption.
- User-friendly management via the TP-Link Tether app.
- Airtime Fairness function to prevent older devices from overloading the network.
- Quality of Service (QoS) function for prioritizing bandwidth-intensive applications.
Cons of the TP-LINK Archer AX53 router:
- The multitude of features can be a hindrance for inexperienced users
- Limited to one USB port.
5. Best cheap WiFi Router
The TP-Link Archer AX10 stands out as the best budget WiFi router, offering cutting-edge technology at a surprisingly affordable price. The model excels in the budget category by supporting the latest Wi-Fi 6 standard, which is a big plus for users looking for next-generation Wi-Fi capabilities without straining their finances. It offers high data speeds of up to 1,500 Mbps, which is great for this price range.
Equipped with triple external antennas combined with Beamforming technology, the Archer AX10 provides the long range and consistent signal strength needed for home use. The device is powered by a powerful quad-core processor that can perfectly handle multiple devices and demanding applications. The router’s user-friendly interface and the TP-Link Tether app make it easy to configure and manage the network, providing convenience for users with varying levels of technical expertise.
All in all, the TP-Link Archer AX10 is a great option for those looking for a powerful and cost-effective Wi-Fi 6 router that offers advanced features and reliable performance.
Pros of the TP-Link Archer AX10 router:
- Uses the advanced Wi-Fi 6 standard.
- Extremely affordable price.
- High-performance quad-core processor.
- User-friendly configuration and management.
- Triple external antennas for increased range.
- Energy-efficient design.
- Potential limitations:
Cons of the TP-Link Archer AX10 router:
- Lack of multi-gig WAN ports.
- Lack of some advanced features.
- Lack of USB ports.
6. Best wifi router for multiple devices
NETGEAR Nighthawk X6S
The NETGEAR Nighthawk X6S is an advanced networking device that is designed to support multiple devices simultaneously, making it an ideal choice for densely populated home and office networks. Utilizing Tri-Band Wi-Fi technology, the router offers three separate Wi-Fi bands, which significantly increases throughput and reduces interference, enabling a smooth connection for a large number of devices.
The Nighthawk X6S stands out for its impressive data speeds, reaching up to 4,000 Mbps (750+1625+1625 Mbps). This makes it capable of handling intensive network tasks such as 4K/8K video streaming, online gaming and large file transfers. The router is equipped with MU-MIMO technology, which enables simultaneous communication with multiple devices instead of a sequential connection, greatly improving network performance.
Pros of the NETGEAR Nighthawk X6S router:
- Tri-Band Wi-Fi.
- High speeds.
- MU-MIMO technology.
- Powerful processors.
- Six external antennas: Improve Wi-Fi coverage and stability.
- Dynamic QoS.
- Ease of setup: The Nighthawk app allows quick installation and management of network settings.
Cons of the NETGEAR Nighthawk X6S router:
- High price.
- Large size.
- Complexity of features.
All in all, the NETGEAR Nighthawk X6S is a high-performance router that, thanks to its features, is able to meet the needs of even the most advanced and demanding home or small business networks, where support for multiple devices is crucial.
7. Best dual band router
The ASUS GT-AX6000 is emerging as a top dual-band router with unparalleled data transfer speeds and state-of-the-art networking capabilities. As a Wi-Fi 6 (802.11ax) router, it operates on two frequencies: 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz. This dual-band functionality delivers a staggering combined data rate of up to 6,000 Mbps, with 1148 Mbps in the 2.4 GHz band and 4804 Mbps in the 5 GHz band. Such speeds make it an excellent choice for demanding tasks such as streaming in 4K/8K, engaging in online gaming and efficiently transferring large files.
Pros of the ASUS GT-AX6000:
- Ultra-high speeds of up to 6,000 Mbps.
- Includes 2.5G and 1G LAN ports.
- Customized features for a smooth gaming experience.
- Provides advanced network protection.
- Easy to configure and manage.
- AiMesh compatibility for greater network coverage.
Cons of the ASUS GT-AX6000:
- High price.
- Its size and design may not appeal to everyone.
- Complexity of features.
The ASUS GT-AX6000, which is a Dual-Band router, is an excellent option for users looking for network performance at the highest level. This is especially important in applications such as gaming and streaming, where every millisecond of latency and every megabit of bandwidth is crucial.
8, Best router for streaming
Synology RT6600ax is an exceptional router that deserves to be called the best streaming device. Equipped with the latest Wi-Fi 6 technology, this advanced router provides ideal conditions for high-definition video streaming. Its exceptional performance is crucial for smooth streaming of 4K/8K content, making it an ideal choice for demanding users.
The Synology RT6600ax router is an advanced device ideal for streaming, featuring a quad-core 1.8 GHz processor and tri-band Wi-Fi (2.4 + 5 + 5 GHz). It supports the 5.9 GHz band for higher connection speeds and has a flexible 2.5 GbE port. Synology Router Manager (SRM) provides network management, creating up to 5 networks and 15 SSIDs, as well as advanced access control and content filtering features. The router also offers VPN server functions for secure remote access.
Pros of the RT6600ax:
- High Performance with high data rates, the RT6600ax guarantees seamless streaming.
- Allows you to create an extensive, stable network without dead spots.
- Synology Router Manager (SRM) offers intuitive network management.
- Built-in security tools protect your network from threats.
- VPN support provides an extra layer of privacy and security.
- High-speed 2.5G ports provide high-speed connectivity.
- High Price.
- Large Size.
MU-MIMO and OFDMA technologies ensure efficient operation in multi-device environments, and intelligent network traffic management with QoS gives priority to video transmission. Support for mesh networking, 2.5G LAN ports and advanced security features make the RT6600ax an extremely attractive choice for users looking for reliability and performance in the multimedia area.
9. Best router with modem built in.
ARRIS SURFboard G36
The ARRIS SURFboard G36, which combines a DOCSIS 3.1 modem with a Wi-Fi 6 router, provides an all-in-one networking solution, giving users performance and minimizing network hardware. Its DOCSIS 3.1 modem guarantees compatibility with future faster Internet plans, while the Wi-Fi 6 router provides network traffic management, serving multiple devices simultaneously without interference.
The G36 stands out for its ease of installation and management, allowing you to quickly set up and customize your network. The ARRIS brand’s robust design and reliability make it a long-term investment. It is ideal for both work and entertainment, offering a stable and fast Internet connection.
Pros of the ARRIS SURFboard G36:
- DOCSIS 3.1: Compatibility with future, faster Internet plans and backward compatibility with DOCSIS 3.0.
- Wi-Fi 6: Advanced network traffic management.
- 2-in-1: Modem and router integration saves space and simplifies the network.
- High connection speed.
- Ease of setup.
- Cost savings.
Cons of the ARRIS SURFboard G36:
- High price.
- Size of the device.
- Less flexibility: failure of one component (modem or router) requires replacement or repair of the entire device.
- ISP compatibility: Despite the broad compatibility of DOCSIS 3.1, some features may not be supported by all ISPs.
In summary, the ARRIS SURFboard G36 is an excellent choice for those looking for an efficient and future-proof connectivity device that can support high-speed Internet connections while reducing the complexity of a home network. However, potential buyers should consider the upfront cost and make sure the device is compatible with their Internet provider.
10. Best midrange router
ROUTER TP-LINK ARCHER AX72 Wi-Fi 6 AX5400
The TP-Link Archer AX72 Wi-Fi 6 AX5400 router is a mid-range device that combines advanced technology and high performance at an affordable price. Equipped with the latest Wi-Fi 6 (802.11ax) standard, it provides better throughput and network efficiency, which is especially important in environments with a large number of devices. With speeds of up to 5,400 Mbps, the Archer AX72 is capable of handling multiple devices simultaneously, making it an ideal choice for homes with multiple users and devices connected to the network.
The router also excels with OFDMA and MU-MIMO technology, which allows multiple devices to communicate simultaneously, minimizing latency and increasing throughput. Six external antennas and Beamforming technology ensure strong and stable signal coverage, which is key to maintaining uninterrupted connectivity in every corner of the home.
In addition, the Archer AX72 offers advanced security features, including the latest WPA3 encryption to protect your network from unauthorized access. The intuitive user interface and Tether app make it easy to manage network settings and parental controls, an added benefit for families.
AX72 router advantages:
- Wi-Fi 6 (802.11ax).
- High speed.
- MU-MIMO technology.
- Beamforming: This technology allows you to direct the signal directly to your devices, instead of radiating it evenly in all directions, increasing the range and stability of your connection.
- Gigabit Etherne ports.
- Backward compatibility.
- Advanced security features.
Disadvantages of the AX72 router:
- High price.
All in all, the TP-Link Archer AX72 is a router that combines high performance, the latest technology and security, while being priced to suit a wide range of users looking for a reliable network solution.
11. Best mesh router overall
Router TP-Link Eco W7200
The TP-Link Eco W7200 router is a latest-generation networking device that combines advanced technology with mesh system functionality to provide wide Wi-Fi coverage and high connection speeds. Thanks to mesh technology, the W7200 can be combined with other compatible TP-Link devices to create a seamless, seamless network with a large coverage area, eliminating the so-called „dead zones” of the Wi-Fi signal in the home or office. This router is especially recommended to users who value the stability of the connection, ease of configuration and the ability to expand the network according to growing needs. In addition, the device is often praised for its energy efficiency and environmental friendliness, which is an additional advantage for environmentally conscious consumers.
As a mesh model, the TP-Link Eco W7200 router has a number of advantages, but like any device, it can also have some limitations. Here’s a summary:
Pros of the TP-Link Eco W7200:
- Ease of setup.
- Energy efficiency.
- High connection speed.
- Support for multiple devices.
- Advanced security features.
Cons of the TP-Link Eco W7200:
- High price.
- Dependence on a single manufacturer: a mesh system works best when all devices are from the same manufacturer.
In conclusion, the TP-Link Eco W7200 is a worthy choice for users looking for an advanced networking solution that is both environmentally friendly and efficient. However, you should consider the above aspects to make sure it meets your individual needs and expectations.
12. Best mesh router on a budget
TP-Link Archer AX21
The TP-Link Archer AX21 is a router that combines advanced technology with affordability, providing an ideal solution for those looking for a cost-effective device with mesh networking capabilities. It supports the latest Wi-Fi 6 standard, providing better network performance and efficiency, especially in crowded environments. With OFDMA and MU-MIMO technology, the Archer AX21 allows multiple devices to connect simultaneously without sacrificing speed.
Its mesh function, known as OneMesh, makes it easy to extend network coverage without having to buy additional mesh devices. Users can enjoy a stable and continuous Wi-Fi signal throughout the home. The router is also equipped with four external antennas that provide wide coverage and a stable connection.
The Archer AX21 is valued for its ease of setup thanks to an intuitive user interface and the Tether app, which allows you to manage your network from your smartphone. It’s a solid choice for home users who need a reliable internet connection and want to use the latest network technology without overtaxing their budget.
Pros of the TP-Link Archer AX21:
- Wi-Fi Standard 6.
- OneMesh Technology: Allows you to create a mesh network using compatible TP-Link devices without investing in expensive dedicated solutions.
- Affordable price.
- Ease of configuration.
- Four external antennas.
Cons of the TP-Link Archer AX21:
- Limited bandwidth.
- Small number of advanced features.
- One network for both bands.
- No support for multi-gig WAN.
- Weaker coverage.
All in all, the TP-Link Archer AX21 is a solid choice for home users looking for a modern Wi-Fi 6 router at a reasonable price and with easy mesh network expandability. However, in more demanding environments or specialized applications, it may not offer enough performance or features.
13. Best mesh performance
ASUS ZenWiFi ET12
ASUS ZenWiFi ET12 is an advanced 6E Wi-Fi mesh system, recommended for users looking for one of the most efficient solutions on the market. This router offers a 6GHz band mode, which enables higher speeds and reduces network congestion, this is especially important in densely built-up areas. The ZenWiFi ET12 also provides a long range and stable connection, which is crucial for homes with larger areas or multiple rooms.
The main feature of the ZenWiFi ET12 is the ease of setup and network management, thanks to an intuitive user interface and the ASUS Router app, which allows you to monitor and control your network from your smartphone. The mesh system provides seamless switching between nodes (seamless roaming), which means that devices automatically connect to the node that provides the strongest signal, with no interruptions in the connection.
The router is also equipped with advanced security features, including AiProtection Pro with Trend Micro technology, providing multi-layered protection against threats from the Internet. The ASUS ZenWiFi ET12 is therefore the choice for those who need a reliable, secure and powerful Wi-Fi mesh system to support multiple devices simultaneously.
As one of the latest 6E Wi-Fi mesh systems, the ASUS ZenWiFi ET12 has a number of advantages, but like any device, it also has its drawbacks. These include:
Pros of the ASUS ZenWiFi ET12 :
- Wi-Fi 6E.
- Long range: the mesh system provides excellent coverage even in large homes, eliminating signal dead zones.
- Ease of Setup.
- Seamless Roaming.
- Advanced Security Systems.
- Multi-layer protection: The router offers advanced features such as parental access control and content filtering.
- High Performance.
Cons of the ASUS ZenWiFi ET12:
- High price: as a premium product.
- Large size.
- Complexity for novice users.
ASUS ZenWiFi ET12 is a very high performance device with Wi-Fi mesh 6E function, ideal for large homes and dense areas, providing very high speed and stable connection. Its main strengths include easy setup, smooth switching between nodes and advanced security features.
14. Best gaming router
Asus ROG Rapture GT-AXE16000
The Asus ROG Rapture GT-AXE16000 represents the pinnacle of gaming routers, combining the latest technologies and innovative solutions that make it an ideal choice for gamers. Its uniqueness lies in its combination of ultra-fast data transfer speeds, reaching up to 16,000 Mbps, ensuring smooth and lag-free performance in the most demanding online games.
The innovative use of the 6 GHz band with Wi-Fi 6E technology guarantees less interference and lower latency, which is crucial for games that require fast response. In addition, exclusive ASUS RangeBoost Plus technology increases coverage and range, eliminating dead zones and ensuring a stable connection in every corner of the home.
The Asus ROG Rapture GT-AXE16000 is also equipped with two 10G ports and a 2.5G WAN port, allowing gamers to utilize the full potential of their high-speed Internet connections. The flexibility of the AiMesh configuration allows the creation of advanced mesh networks, providing even more freedom and efficiency in managing the home network.
A key aspect that sets this model apart is the three-level gaming acceleration, which optimizes each stage of data exchange between the device and the game server, minimizing latency and increasing responsiveness.
Pros of the Asus ROG Rapture GT-AXE16000
- Unmatched speed and transfer performance of up to 16,000 Mbps.
- Quad-Band Wi-Fi 6E Technology.
- Enhanced Range and Link Stability with ASUS RangeBoost Plus.
- Two 10G ports and a 2.5G WAN port enable the full potential of high-speed Internet connections.
- Three-Level Game Acceleration.
- Support for Mesh networking with AiMesh.
Cons of the Asus ROG Rapture GT-AXE16000.
- High Price.
- Complexity of Configuration of advanced features.
- Large Size.
- High-speed Internet connection required to get the most out of the router.
All in all, the Asus ROG Rapture GT-AXE16000 is more than a simple router – it’s a comprehensive solution for gamers who don’t accept compromises on the speed, stability and performance of their Internet connection.
How we test Wi-Fi routers?
Evaluating the performance of a Wi-Fi router is crucial for choosing the most suitable one. The assessment techniques adhere to standardized procedures, aligned with the protocols of authoritative bodies like the „Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers” (IEEE). Key testing areas include:
- Data Transmission Speed: This involves measuring the router’s data transfer rate between devices and the network, utilizing TCP and UDP tests to gauge maximum speeds.
- Signal Coverage: This test measures the maximum distance from the router at which a reliable connection is maintained, with results indicated in meters.
- Connection Reliability: This assesses the router’s ability to sustain a stable connection over time without unexpected dropouts.
- Handling Multiple Devices: This test checks the router’s efficiency in managing several devices at once, including varied gadgets like laptops, TVs, and smart devices.
- Bandwidth Management (QoS): Quality of Service testing looks at how the router allocates bandwidth to different applications, ensuring optimal performance for activities like gaming, streaming, and web browsing.
- Expert Analysis: Consulting reviews and research from trusted sources and experts, such as Consumer Reports, provides insights into a router’s performance and dependability.
Sources for detailed definitions and research on these topics include the IEEE and various expert reviews. It’s also beneficial to consider metrics like megabits per second (Mbps) for a comprehensive understanding.
What should I follow when choosing a wifi router?
When selecting a Wi-Fi router, several crucial considerations are necessary to ensure optimal performance and user satisfaction. Here’s a guide to the essential aspects:
- Wi-Fi Speed and Standards: Verify the Wi-Fi standards supported by the router. Popular ones include 802.11ac (Wi-Fi 5) and 802.11ax (Wi-Fi 6). Focus on the router’s transmission speed, measured in Mbps or Gbps – the higher, the more efficient.
- Frequency Bands: Opt for a router that offers dual-band support, including both 2.4 GHz for extended range and 5 GHz for faster speeds over shorter distances. This dual-band capability allows for more customized usage.
- MIMO and MU-MIMO Technologies: These technologies, known as Multiple-Input Multiple-Output (MIMO) and Multi-User MIMO (MU-MIMO), enhance the router’s ability to handle several devices at once. The greater the number of antennas and streams, the more efficiently it manages multiple connections.
- LAN and WAN Ports: Assess the number of LAN ports (for wired device connections) and WAN ports (for internet connection) the router provides. Ensure it meets your connectivity requirements.
- Quality of Service (QoS): Routers with QoS features enable prioritization of network traffic, crucial for activities like online gaming and streaming, ensuring smoother performance.
- Security Features: Prioritize routers offering robust security protocols, such as WPA3, to safeguard your network. Security is a paramount factor.
- Remote Management and Apps: Some routers come with user-friendly apps for remote network and device management, offering convenience and control.
- Expert Reviews and Research: Consult expert reviews and test results to guide your choice. Look for evaluations from trusted sources for reliable insights.
- Device Compatibility: Ensure the router is compatible with your intended devices, including laptops, smartphones, TVs, and IoT gadgets.
- Software Updates: Opt for routers from brands known for regular software updates, vital for maintaining security and enhancing performance.
For a comprehensive understanding, refer to professional surveys and technology expert reviews. Paying attention to units like Mbps or GHz is crucial for accurately comparing different router models.
How many Mbps is a good router?
The appropriate Mbps speed for a router greatly varies based on individual requirements and the speed of the internet service provided by the ISP. Here’s an updated guideline:
Basic Activities (such as web browsing and email):
For a single user or a small household, a speed range of 10-25 Mbps is typically adequate.
Moderate Usage (including HD video streaming, online gaming, and remote work):
A family or a home with multiple devices should consider speeds between 25-100 Mbps.
High-Demand Usage (like 4K video streaming, high-intensity online gaming, and significant data transfers):
For intensive usage involving numerous devices, a speed range of 100-500 Mbps is advisable.
Very High-Demand Situations (such as streaming 4K videos on several devices, extensive home networks, and smart homes):
In the most demanding scenarios, speeds of 500 Mbps or higher are recommended.
It’s important to note that contemporary routers often support speeds far exceeding the average internet access speeds available to most consumers. For instance, routers adhering to the Wi-Fi 5 (802.11ac) standard can support up to 1,300 Mbps on the 5 GHz band, while those compatible with Wi-Fi 6 (802.11ax) standards can achieve speeds up to 10 Gbps.
Ensuring that your router can handle the internet speeds provided by your ISP and has sufficient processing power to manage your home network traffic effectively is crucial.
Which Other Wi-Fi Router Features to Look For?
When selecting a Wi-Fi router, it’s important to consider not only fundamental aspects like compatibility with 802.11ac or 802.11ax standards (Wi-Fi 5 and Wi-Fi 6) but also additional features that enhance performance and usability:
- Dual-band or Tri-band: Opt for dual-band routers for efficient management of network traffic across 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz frequencies, reducing interference. Tri-band routers offer an extra 5 GHz band, boosting overall throughput.
- MU-MIMO Technology: This feature enables the router to simultaneously communicate with multiple devices, enhancing network efficiency and minimizing latency.
- Quality of Service (QoS): QoS is crucial for prioritizing network traffic, especially when simultaneously running bandwidth-heavy applications like online gaming or video streaming.
- Enhanced Security: Seek routers with robust security features, including WPA3 encryption, built-in firewall, VPN support, and guest network capabilities.
- Ethernet Ports: Additional Ethernet ports are beneficial for wired connections to devices requiring stable internet, such as gaming consoles or PCs.
- App-Based Management: Some routers offer mobile app integration for convenient and user-friendly configuration and management.
- IoT Compatibility: Consider routers with support for smart home communication standards like Zigbee or Z-Wave, which may be increasingly relevant.
- Mesh Networking Capability: For extensive coverage in larger homes, Wi-Fi mesh systems are ideal for expanding network reach without compromising signal strength.
- USB Connectivity: USB ports on routers allow for easy connection of network printers or external storage devices, facilitating access to files within the network.
- Regular Software Updates: Routers that receive consistent software updates offer enhanced security and can introduce new functionalities over time.
An exemplary model encompassing many of these features is the Asus RT-AX88U series. This router supports Wi-Fi 6, is equipped with 8 LAN ports, incorporates MU-MIMO and QoS, offers advanced security options, and is compatible with AiMesh for creating a mesh network.
Which Wireless Protocols Should I Look For?
When choosing a WiFi router, consider the following wireless protocols:
- Wi-Fi 4 (802.11n): An older standard that is still widely used, offering speeds of up to 300 Mbps.
- Wi-Fi 5 (802.11ac): This is the most widely used standard today, offering higher speeds (up to 1,300 Mbps) and better performance in crowded wireless networks.
- Wi-Fi 6 (802.11ax): This is the latest standard, providing even higher speeds (up to 10 Gbps), better support for multiple devices used simultaneously, and improved energy efficiency.
It is recommended to choose a router with Wi-Fi 6 (802.11ax) support for future compatibility and performance. Experts such as the Wi-Fi Alliance highlight the advantages of Wi-Fi 6, including better support for connection density and performance in multi-user environments. An example of research confirming these advantages is the „Evolution of Wi-Fi 6” report published by the Wi-Fi Alliance.
What to avoid when choosing a WiFi router?
When choosing a WiFi router, avoid these few key factors to ensure the best performance and value for your needs:
- Outdated Standards: Avoid routers that only support older standards like 802.11b/g/n (Wi-Fi 4). These will not provide the speed and coverage of newer standards like 802.11ac (Wi-Fi 5) and 802.11ax (Wi-Fi 6).
- Single Band Routers: Single band routers only operate on the 2.4 GHz frequency. It’s better to choose a dual-band or tri-band router that also operates on the 5 GHz (and 6 GHz for Wi-Fi 6) frequency for faster speeds and less interference.
- Low Quality of Service (QoS) Features: Routers without advanced QoS features can’t prioritize traffic effectively, which is crucial for activities like gaming or streaming.
- Insufficient Security Features: Security is paramount. Avoid routers with outdated security protocols. Look for routers with WPA3 security, the latest standard.
- Limited Connectivity Options: Routers with a limited number of Ethernet ports or lacking USB connections can restrict your home network setup.
- Poor Manufacturer Support: Avoid brands with a reputation for poor customer support or infrequent firmware updates. Regular updates are crucial for security and performance.
- Ignoring Reviews and Expert Opinions: Not doing proper research and ignoring expert reviews can lead to choosing a router that doesn’t fit your specific needs.
- Overlooking Mesh Network Capabilities: If you have a large home or areas with weak signals, avoid routers that don’t support mesh networking, which allows multiple routers to work together to cover a larger area.
- Neglecting Speed Requirements: Don’t choose a router that can’t handle your internet plan’s speed. Ensure the router’s maximum speed matches or exceeds your internet service speed.
- Ignoring Future Needs: Consider future-proofing. A router that meets your needs today might not in a few years. Think about potential future devices and internet speed upgrades.
What is the best router brand?
Determining the „best” router brand can vary depending on individual needs, preferences and specific use cases. However, several brands listed below are consistently recognized for their quality, performance and innovation in the router market. Some of the most highly regarded are
Asus: Known for its high-performance routers, especially in the gaming sector. Asus routers are often equipped with advanced features such as AiMesh for mesh networking, AiProtection for enhanced security and user-friendly interfaces.
Netgear: Offers a wide range of routers, including the popular Nighthawk series. Netgear is praised for its solid performance, strong signal and features designed for both general and advanced users.
TP-Link: Offers a variety of routers that offer great value for money. TP-Link is known for its easy-to-use and reliable routers, including the Archer and Deco series, which are popular among users looking for a balance between performance and price.
Google: Google Nest Wifi is known for its simplicity and integration with the Google ecosystem. It’s a great choice for those who prioritize ease of use and mesh Wi-Fi capabilities.
Linksys: A long-standing brand in the router market, Linksys offers a range of routers with solid performance. Their Velop series is well rated in mesh networking configurations.
Cisco: Known more in the business and enterprise sector, Cisco offers high-end routers with robust security features and extensive configuration options.
Ubiquiti: Popular in both the consumer and professional markets, Ubiquiti routers, especially the UniFi and EdgeRouter series, are known for their advanced features and enterprise-class performance.
D-Link: Offers a range of routers that are generally more affordable, meeting the needs of budget-conscious consumers without compromising performance too much.
How much WiFi routers cost?
The cost of WiFi routers can vary widely depending on their features, performance, brand and technology. Here’s a general breakdown:
Basic routers: These typically support older standards such as 802.11n (Wi-Fi 4) and offer basic functionality. Prices range from as little as $20 to around $50. They are suitable for small spaces and fewer devices.
Mid-range routers: Offering more advanced features, such as dual-band support and 802.11ac (Wi-Fi 5) technology, these routers cost between $50 and $150. They are ideal for medium-sized homes with moderate Internet use.
High-performance routers: These often include the latest technologies such as 802.11ax (Wi-Fi 6), tri-band support and advanced QoS and security features. Prices can range from $150 to $300 or more. They are well suited for large homes, gaming, streaming and households with many connected devices.
Mesh networking systems: Designed to provide extensive coverage in larger homes or spaces with signal obstructions, mesh systems can cost $100 to $500 or more, depending on the number of nodes and features.
Gaming routers: Designed specifically for gamers, these routers often have specialized gaming features and robust hardware for low latency and fast speeds. Prices typically range from $150 to more than $300.
Enterprise-class routers: Used in business environments for extensive networking needs, they can cost from several hundred to thousands of dollars, depending on the complexity and features required.
How much should I spend on a router?
The amount you should spend on a router depends largely on your specific needs and usage scenarios. If you have a small space and do not require high-speed internet for activities like gaming or streaming in 4K, a basic or mid-range router, which could cost between $20 to $100, might be sufficient. These routers typically offer decent performance for everyday web browsing and streaming at moderate speeds.
However, if you have a larger home, multiple devices, or need high-speed internet for gaming, streaming in high definition, or extensive downloading and uploading, investing in a high-performance router or a mesh network system would be more appropriate. These can range from $100 to $300 or more, but they offer better range, faster speeds, and more advanced features like improved security, parental controls, and quality of service (QoS) settings.
In essence, it’s about balancing your budget with your internet needs. If you’re a power user or have a high-speed internet plan, it’s generally worth investing more in a router to get the most out of your internet service. On the other hand, for basic use, a more affordable model should suffice.
Does the Price of Your Wireless Router Matter?
Tak, cena routera bezprzewodowego ma znaczenie, ponieważ często odzwierciedla jakość, funkcje i możliwości urządzenia. Ogólnie rzecz biorąc, droższe routery oferują wyższe prędkości, lepszy zasięg i zaawansowane funkcje, takie jak obsługa najnowszych standardów bezprzewodowych (np. Wi-Fi 6), ulepszone protokoły bezpieczeństwa i ustawienia jakości usług (QoS), które nadają priorytet przepustowości dla działań takich jak gry lub przesyłanie strumieniowe.
Niedrogie routery mogą być wystarczające do podstawowego przeglądania stron internetowych lub małych przestrzeni, ale często brakuje im wydajności i funkcji potrzebnych w gospodarstwie domowym z wieloma urządzeniami, większymi obszarami lub zadaniami wymagającymi dużej przepustowości. Routery ze średniej i wyższej półki są zazwyczaj bardziej niezawodne, oferują lepszy zasięg i mogą obsługiwać więcej jednoczesnych połączeń, co ma kluczowe znaczenie w dzisiejszych domach, w których wiele urządzeń jest często podłączonych do Internetu.
Ważne jest jednak, aby zrównoważyć koszty z konkretnymi potrzebami. Bardzo wysokiej klasy router może nie być konieczny, jeśli korzystanie z Internetu jest minimalne lub jeśli mieszkasz w małej przestrzeni. Z drugiej strony, inwestycja w wysokiej jakości router może znacznie poprawić jakość korzystania z Internetu, zwłaszcza jeśli masz szybkie połączenie internetowe, duży dom lub korzystasz z Internetu do działań wymagających dużej ilości danych. Dlatego też, choć cena jest ważnym czynnikiem, należy ją rozważyć wraz z osobistymi lub domowymi wzorcami korzystania z Internetu.
Is TP-Link a good router?
TP-Link is generally considered a good brand for routers, offering a range of products that cater to various needs and budgets. The brand is known for providing reliable performance, user-friendly interfaces, and good value for money. TP-Link routers, including the popular Archer and Deco series, are often praised for their balance of features, performance, and cost, making them a solid choice for both average consumers and tech-savvy users.
One of the strengths of TP-Link is its variety. Whether you’re looking for a basic, budget-friendly router for simple web browsing and streaming, a mid-range model with better speed and coverage, or a more advanced router with features for gaming or a mesh network, TP-Link likely has a product that fits the bill.
Additionally, TP-Link has been incorporating newer technologies like Wi-Fi 6 into their products, making them a good option for those looking to future-proof their home network. Their commitment to innovation, combined with competitive pricing, makes TP-Link a brand worth considering when shopping for a new router.
What WiFI routers do?
WiFi routers are key devices in home and office Internet networks that perform several important functions. First of all, a WiFi router connects to a modem via an Ethernet cable and converts the Internet signal into a wireless signal, allowing devices such as smartphones, laptops, tablets and other smart home devices to connect to the Internet without the need for cables.
The router also manages data traffic on the network, routing packets of information to the appropriate devices. As a result, multiple devices can use the Internet simultaneously without significantly slowing down the connection. In addition, WiFi routers often offer security features such as firewalls and encryption to protect the network from unauthorized access and cyber attacks.
Many modern WiFi routers also include advanced features such as parental controls, the ability to create guest networks, traffic prioritization for specific devices or applications (such as for online gaming or video streaming), and the ability to create mesh networks for better signal coverage in larger homes.
All in all, a WiFi router is the focal point of a home or office network that not only provides wireless Internet access, but also manages network traffic, ensures security and offers a variety of features for increased productivity and convenience.
How do I know when it/s time to update my router?
Knowing when to update your router is important for maintaining a fast and secure internet connection. Generally, you should consider updating your router if you’re experiencing consistent issues with internet speed, range, or connectivity that can’t be resolved with simpler fixes. If your router is several years old and struggles to support the increasing number of devices in your home, or if it doesn’t support the latest Wi-Fi standards like Wi-Fi 6, an upgrade can significantly improve your network’s performance and security.
Another key indicator is security. Older routers may not receive firmware updates anymore, leaving your network vulnerable to security threats. Upgrading to a newer model ensures better security protocols and regular updates.
Also, if your internet service provider has upgraded your internet plan to higher speeds, your old router might not be capable of handling these increased speeds, leading to underutilization of the service you’re paying for.
Lastly, if you’ve expanded the area of your home or office and your current router doesn’t provide adequate coverage, even with extenders or repeaters, it might be time to consider a new router or a mesh network system for better coverage.
In summary, if your current router is limiting your internet experience through poor performance, lack of coverage, security concerns, or inability to keep up with your internet plan, it’s likely time to consider an upgrade.
Should I consider a mesh router?
Considering a mesh router depends on your specific networking needs. If you have a larger home or an area with multiple floors, a mesh router can be an excellent choice. It helps eliminate dead zones and provides consistent, strong Wi-Fi coverage throughout your space. This is particularly beneficial if you have rooms that are far from where a traditional single router would be placed, as mesh systems use multiple nodes to spread the Wi-Fi signal evenly.
Additionally, if you have a lot of smart home devices or multiple users who need a stable connection in different parts of the house, a mesh network can ensure that everyone gets a reliable signal. Mesh systems are also generally easier to set up and manage, often coming with user-friendly apps that help you monitor and control your network.
However, if you live in a smaller apartment or house and don’t experience issues with Wi-Fi coverage, a traditional single router might be sufficient and more cost-effective. Mesh routers tend to be more expensive than traditional routers, so it’s worth considering whether the benefits align with your specific needs and if they justify the extra cost
How Can I Extend My Wi-Fi Signal?
Extending your Wi-Fi signal is key to ensuring good Internet connectivity throughout your home or office. Here are some effective ways to do it:
- Reposition Your Router: Sometimes, simply moving your router to a more central location can significantly improve Wi-Fi coverage. Avoid placing it near metal objects, microwaves, or thick walls, as these can interfere with the signal.
- Upgrade Your Router: If your router is old, it might not be powerful enough to cover your entire space. Upgrading to a newer model, especially one that supports Wi-Fi 6 (802.11ax), can provide better range and performance.
- Use a Wi-Fi Extender/Repeater: Wi-Fi extenders (also known as repeaters) can boost the signal to reach farther areas of your home. They are relatively easy to set up and can be an affordable solution.
- Install a Mesh Network System: Mesh Wi-Fi systems consist of a main router that connects directly to your modem, and a series of satellite modules, or nodes, placed around your home for full Wi-Fi coverage. They are particularly effective for larger spaces.
- Add Additional Access Points: For a more stable and consistent network, consider adding additional wired access points. These are connected to the main router via Ethernet cables and provide a strong Wi-Fi signal in their immediate area.
- Update Router Firmware: Sometimes, performance issues can be resolved by simply updating your router’s firmware to the latest version.
- Change Wi-Fi Channels: Interference from other Wi-Fi networks can impact your signal. Changing the channel on your router can help avoid this interference.
- Use Powerline Network Adapters: These adapters use the electrical wiring in your walls to extend your network. You plug one adapter into an outlet near your router and connect it to the router with an Ethernet cable, then place another adapter where you need the signal.
- Reduce Wi-Fi Leeches: Secure your Wi-Fi to prevent unauthorized access. Too many devices connected to your Wi-Fi can slow down the network for everyone.
- Optimize Router Settings: Tweaking advanced settings like QoS (Quality of Service) can help prioritize bandwidth for critical devices or applications.
Remember, the best solution depends on the specific layout and size of your space, as well as the type of internet activities you engage in.
What Do the Different Wi-Fi Bands Mean?
Wi-Fi bands refer to the specific radio wave frequencies on which wireless networks operate. The most common Wi-Fi bands are 2.4 GHz, 5 GHz, and, more recently, 6 GHz, each with its own characteristics and uses:
2.4 GHz Band:
Range: This band has a longer range, meaning it can cover a larger area. It’s better at penetrating solid objects like walls and floors.
Speed: Generally offers slower speeds compared to the 5 GHz band.
Congestion: More prone to interference and congestion as it’s not only used by Wi-Fi but also by other devices like microwaves, Bluetooth devices, and baby monitors.
Compatibility: Almost all Wi-Fi devices support this band, making it a universal choice for compatibility.
5 GHz Band:
Range: Has a shorter range and is less effective at penetrating solid objects compared to the 2.4 GHz band.
Speed: Offers faster data rates and higher speeds, ideal for bandwidth-intensive tasks like HD video streaming and online gaming.
Congestion: Less congested with fewer interference issues, as fewer devices use this band.
Compatibility: Supported by newer and more advanced Wi-Fi devices. Not as universally compatible as 2.4 GHz, but widely used in modern devices.
6 GHz Band (Wi-Fi 6E):
Range: Similar to the 5 GHz band, it has a shorter range and limited penetration through solid objects.
Speed: Provides even higher speeds and greater capacity than the 5 GHz band. It’s the latest advancement in Wi-Fi technology.
Congestion: Significantly less congested, as it’s new and not many devices currently operate on this band.
Compatibility: Exclusive to devices that support Wi-Fi 6E, which is the latest Wi-Fi standard.
Choosing the Right Band:
2.4 GHz is suitable for basic internet browsing, especially in larger homes where range is important.
5 GHz is better for high-bandwidth activities like streaming and gaming, especially in areas where the router and device are relatively close without many physical obstructions.
6 GHz (Wi-Fi 6E) is ideal for ultra-high-speed internet connections and environments with many connected devices, offering the highest speeds and lowest interference.
Many modern routers are dual-band or tri-band, meaning they can broadcast on two or three bands simultaneously, allowing devices to choose the best band automatically based on signal strength, distance, and congestion.