List of best routers for your home Wi-Fi
Stream, game and browse better with the best wireless routers. A wireless router is a device that performs the functions of a router and also includes the functions of a wireless access point. It is used to provide access to the Internet or a private computer network. Depending on the manufacturer and model, it can function in a wired local area network, in a wireless-only LAN, or in a mixed wired and wireless network.
Most households have wireless routers that are a few years old. With each passing year, more connected devices join your home Wifi network, putting more stress on that outdated router. It’s important to know what to look for in a router because like most people, you’re probably due for an upgrade. In fact, you should replace your router every two years to stay current with advances in WiFi technology.
So, here is a list of best routers for your home Wi-Fi network.
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Google Wifi is the best proof we can think of for this mesh revolution – you can finally say goodbye to the days when the only way to achieve wireless freedom was to install a bunch of wireless extenders. The premise of Google Wifi is simple – buy a set of points and place them in key locations around your home. Then, just scan a QR code and you’re good to go – it’s not just the best wireless router you can buy, it’s also the easiest to set up.
The D-Link DIR-842 is a dual-band router that delivers solid throughput, has four wired LAN ports, plenty of management settings, and is a breeze to install. Very affordable. Good throughput performance in testing. Dual-band Wi-Fi. Lots of management settings.
The Asus ROG Rapture GT-AC5300 offers lots of gamer-friendly features, copious I/O ports, and a slick management console that lets you optimize your network for lag-free gaming. Speedy throughput performance.Eight LAN ports. Works with Alexa voice commands and IFTTT applets. Slick user interface.
When the Netgear Orbi first hit the streets, it completely changed the wireless router game. And, in 2019, Netgear is offering the Netgear Orbi AC2200 RBK23, a more affordable router for casual users that don’t need to cover a stately mansion. It features fewer antennae and ethernet ports than the original, but it’s still enough to offer very solid network coverage. Plus, the smaller size means that it can more easily blend in – you won’t feel the need to obscure it.
The Synology RT2600ac might be the best thing that's ever happened to home networking geeks. Synology has approached the router with the same design ethic as their excellent NAS range, and the RT2600ac is the stunning result. Where other router makers talk-the-talk of security, flexibility and performance, the RT2600ac unequivocally delivers on those words.
TP-Link Talon AD7200
The TP-Link Talon AD7200 Wi-Fi Router holds the credential of being the first 802.11ad router in the market. The router packs in many cutting-edge features to ensure ultimate performance. It’s not inexpensive. This router offers a few impressive features for the price! The Talon AD7200 uses multi-Band technology to run three distinct Wi-Fi bands at once. The router supports a combined Wi-Fi speed of 7.2 Gbps (Band 1: 800 Mbps @2.4GHz, Band 2: 1733 Mbps @5GHz, Band 3: 4600 Mbps @60GHz). While a traditional router can only stream to one device at a time, the Wireless AC and Multi-User MIMO technologies of the Talon AD7200 facilitates simultaneous streaming. The 1.4 GHz dual-core processor is powerful enough to support multiple users at once. It has eight state-of-the-art external antennas which help in maximizing range and performance. It has 1 WAN and four high-speed Gigabit Ethernet ports. The two super speed USB 3.0 ports allow you to transfer files to an external HDD or USB drive directly.
Amped Wireless RTA2600
Next on the list is the Amped Wireless RTA2600 Athena router. As long as you don’t confuse it with the Greek goddess Athena, the router will not disappoint you. Although not expensive, the router is for network enthusiasts. It might not have the bling of the other routers that we have reviewed, but it comes with plenty of features that should be enough for both the average consumer and people who are looking to have some more. The wireless router surprisingly gives a terrific performance. The performance over Wi-Fi is even better regardless of the number of devices connected to it. Setting up the router is a breeze and can be done with anyone who has a little knowledge about networking.
This router comes with the support for the AC1900 standard support. That means the five gigahertz band has a speed of 1,300 megahertz and the 2.5 gigahertz band has a speed of 600 megahertz. The router comes with incredibly powerful hardware. Wi-Fi range is fantastic and delivers excellent speed. The NAS performance is probably the best we have seen. The design is retro and will please those who do it for the aesthetics.
The TP-Link Archer AX6000 can power you into the future. It runs on the next-generation 802.11ax wireless standard, sometimes called Wi-Fi 6. Since 802.11ax hasn’t been officially approved, support may be limited if issues arise. But the benefits are impressive: its efficiency in handling wireless frequencies mean longer range, faster speed, and more capacity than other wireless standards. Powered by a 1.8 GHz quad-core processor and 1GB of RAM, the Archer AX6000 can support speeds up to 6 Gbps total: 4804 Mbps at 5 GHz and 1148 Mbps at 2.4 GHz. (802.11ax operates on both the 5-GHz and 2.4-GHz bands, unlike the 5GHz-only 802.11ac standard.) 802.11ax also adds both downlink and uplink MU-MIMO along with OFDMA (orthogonal frequency-division multiple access) to deliver efficient signals to four times as many devices as 802.11ac.
D-Link AC3200 Ultra Tri-Band
The AC3200 D-Link is a return to the more traditional router compared to the last two. And it is a beast of a router. The first thing you notice taking it out of the box is its awesome symmetrical design. It uses six different antennas for superior beam-forming and performance, helping bring your wireless signal across the home.
Now that smart homes are becoming more and more common, we need wireless routers that can also serve as a smart home hub. This doesn’t just do wonders for convenience, but it would clear out some of the clutter made by multiple routers, modems and hubs. And, the Samsung Connect Home does exactly that. It’s not the most feature-rich wireless router out there, but it’s competitive enough with the Google Wifi, while still packing in the SmartThings hub that it’s still one of the best routers - especially if you have a ton of smart devices.
AVM FRITZ!Box 7590
A router by name, yet so much more in reality. The AVM FRITZ! Box 7590 makes other router makers just look like they’ve not been trying. However, it's expensive and you'll need to use the extra features on offer to make it worth the relatively high price.
Stock photo from Konstantin Faraktinov