Whether it’s gaming, browsing, or watching the newest Marvel movie in crisp 4K resolution, a quality router is the difference between a total-home experience and pixelated screens that look like you’re trying to stream illegal cable. But you can avoid this. We reviewed the best wireless routers here to help.
- Ethernet Ports
- Ethernet Ports
Far and away our favorite wireless router and for good reason – it’s a data transfer BEAST! The AC1750 is one of those “set it and forget it routers,” in that you really won’t have to worry about too much going wrong once it’s set up.
We’ll admit – we’re guilty of multi-screening devices during Jeopardy. Families that need a router that can handle all this traffic will LOVE the capabilities of the AC1750 – you can connect up to 50 (!) devices at once easily.
The AC1750 comes with all the bells and whistles you’d expect from a high-tech gadget – our favorite feature here was it’s Alexa compatibility. The voice control support embedded in the device allows you to control and use IFTTT to easily trigger actions when devices connect or disconnect from the network.
The AC1750 was a breeze for us to set up – the Tether app backed by TP had the router up and running within minutes.
This wireless router is the total package of value, design, and technical capabilities. You’ll get everything you’d expect from a super high-end router at a fraction of the cost. Alexa capability is an added bonus that most other models we reviewed didn’t have. You won’t be disappointed.
- Small, sleek design
- High data transfer rate
- Alexa compatibility
- Ability to connect 50+ devices easily
- Up to 2,500 square feet of coverage
- Tether app allows for remote access and simple set-up
- Customers complain of inconsistent lagging during online gaming
NETGEAR advertises this router as “Maximum speed, optimum ease” and we would tend to agree. We loved this router because we could do literally anything while connected and never experience a drop in quality.
Gamer? Great – the R6700 is equipped with a dual core processor that will give a boost to both wireless and wired performance for any gaming laptop.
Movie buff? Fire up Netflix because the R6700 comes equipped with beamforming technology for whole home HD coverage.
Maybe the big screens are too much for you and you’re on your mobile device more often than not. The R6700 has you covered too – high powered amplifiers and external antennas increase WiFi range for the entire home – no need for WiFi extenders!
Coolest thing about the R6700? its Airtime Fairness feature. There’s nothing worse than being in the middle of a Candy Crush game, when all of a sudden your Uncle tries to connect his 2008 smartphone and kills your score – there’s no more network lag when slower devices connect.
The R6700 Nighthawk is the perfect router for people looking for top speed on multiple devices. Airtime Fairness is a unique feature we didn’t see in any of the other products we reviewed. This router can do it all no matter whether you’re gaming, streaming, or just surfing the web. If you don’t mind shelling out a few extra dollars, you’ll be beyond satisfied with this compact router.
- Perfect for any sort of digital endeavor
- Parental controls allow for safer experience
- Free backup software automatically safeguards files
- Nighthawk app allows for easy router setup and speed test
- Fastest router for mobile devices
- Price tag is slightly above-average
- No USB 2.0 capabilities – not ideal for older devices
The AC1200 is about the same size as its AC1750 counterpart, but with slightly slower data transfer speeds. You’ll pay a bit less for this model though, so it’s ideal for someone on a budget that doesn’t necessarily need top end speed.
The AC1200 doesn’t skimp on any of the quality features TP has come to be known for. Its MU-MIMO technology allows for high speeds on multiple devices simultaneously – perfect for linking wireless adapters.
The most unique feature the AC1200 has is its AP mode – short for access point mode. This mode can be toggled on and off to share your internet wirelessly.
One thing we love about TP’s products is their industry leading 2-year warranty program. If you’ve got an issue, they’ll take care of it quickly and easily for you without hassle. You’ll also enjoy 24/7 tech support – a nice bonus for those of us that have too often found ourselves fumbling with ethernet cords at 11:00 PM (don’t lie, we know you’ve been there).
Value is the name of the game here, and the AC1200 delivers. It’s a great, no-frills wireless router that can be up and running in seconds. AP mode is one of the cooler features we reviewed here, and what the router lacks in transfer speed it more than makes up for with it’s other features.
- Affordable, great value for the price tag
- AP Mode is unique and useful
- Eliminates WiFi dead zones
- Easy guest network creation means you can keep your network private
- No 2.4 GHz support
- Slightly slower data transfer speeds than other models
Much like the R6700 Nighthawk, the AC1200 comes equipped with Beamforming+ technology. Beamforming allows you to direct your WiFi signal to a specific device – the result is blazing fast speeds and connectivity.
To that end, the AC1200 has a dynamic QoS system – it actually prioritizes its bandwidth for the ultimate gaming and streaming experiences. If entertainment is your thing, this is the router for you.
The AC1200 is compatible with the Nighthawk app we’ve come to know and love from NETGEAR, so don’t worry about a complicated set up process.
Beamforming is an awesome feature, and we loved the ability to focus all the power of the router on the task at hand. Dynamic QoS is something not many other models we reviewed had, and it was nice to decide which activities to allocate the most bandwidth to. That being said, we expected a little bit more for the price tag here.
- Fast and easy set up through the app
- Beamforming allows for targeted, lightning fast speeds
- Reliable device for any sort of activity
- Price is a little high compared to what you get
- Slower data transfer speeds
- No USB 3.0 capability
This wireless router is a POWERHOUSE. The AC1900 had the highest data transfer speed of any router we reviewed – a whopping 1,900 mbps. That makes it the ideal choice for both streaming and gaming – you’ll never run into a pixelated screen with this monster.
When we say monster we mean it – the AC1900 was the heaviest router we reviewed, it felt like we had a fully functioning brick in our hands when we went to set it up.
The best feature here is it’s Smart Connect technology. Smart Connect automatically optimizes your device’s connection by switching it to the fastest available WiFi band.
Airtime Fairness and parental controls are once again mainstays, and the ability to set up a VPN server was an awesome feature for those of us focused on protecting our privacy.
One of the fastest routers we reviewed, this thing can handle anything you throw at it. The price tag may be a little above-average, but in our estimation it’s well worth it. Smart Connect is really unique feature that we loved.
- Smart Connect makes sure you’ve got the best connection, every time
- Super fast data transfer speeds make this an amazing option for any activity
- Wave 2 AC WiFi lets you experience smooth 4K streaming and gaming simultaneously
- Higher price tag
- Heavy device
ASUS touts this product as one of the world’s fastest WiFi routers, and we were blown away by its speed. Dual-band data rates boost transfer speeds up to 1,900 mbps, and a USB 3.0 port allows you to share your devices quickly over the network.
Aside from speed, security is one of the biggest things we loved about this wireless router. Air Protection powered by Trend Micro provides you with multi-stage vulnerability protection – no need to worry about hackers!
There’s no getting around the price tag here, but if you’re looking for a device that matches power with cost, the ASUS 1900 is a great option. It’s definitely one of the most secure models we reviewed.
- Incredibly fast router
- Air Protection quells any and all security concerns
- AiMesh allows creation of a whole home WiFi network if you’ve got other ASUS routers
- On of the most expensive routers we reviewed
- Only four ethernet ports
A powerful dual core 1 GHz processor inside allows for top-level performance, and downstream/upstream QoS put a focus on streaming and gaming.
This router places a huge focus on gaming, and justifiably so. Nighthawk delivers AC1900 WiFi and blazing fast speeds, eliminating any potential for lag. You’ll never again find yourself on the receiving end of some newbie’s head shot because your game was lagging.
High-powered amps and antennas extend WiFi coverage by a massive amount – we were even able to sit in the backyard and have crystal clear access! Pair this compact router with a WiFi booster and you can connect from literally ANYWHERE.
There’s absolutely no doubt that this is the router for you if you consider yourself a gamer. We never once experienced lag, and we could game from virtually anywhere in the house without any sort of disruption in service. It’s expensive, but worth it.
- Ideal for gaming
- Nighthawk App compatible
- Powerful dual core processor for ultimate speeds
- Larger device than most others reviewed
8. TP-Link N450
Everything we’ve reviewed so far has been all about the tech features and unique capabilities. But what if you’re someone that is really just looking to get online and be done with it? Then the N450 is the compact router for you.
This device is truly WiFi that works for you – it allows you to set limits on when and how devices can connect to the internet and limit things with parental controls.
This wireless router’s tiny design means you can place it virtually anywhere without it being a huge eyesore. The other thing tiny about this router? The price tag – it’s a welcome sight for someone simply looking for a fast, effective wireless router that gets the job done.
This router is fine for what it is – a small, effective router that will get you online effectively. It’s probably not ideal for a family of five that wants to connect 15 devices at once, but it’s inexpensive price tag is attractive for someone just looking to get online!
- Quick and easy to set up
- IP based bandwidth control allows you to determine how much bandwidth is allocated
- Ideal for families with children
- Slower transfer speeds than other models
- Only supports 2.4 GHz
The Nighthawk AC2300 is blazing fast, but comes with all sorts of useful odds and ends that make it well worth the price tag. Circle with Disney Smart Parental Controls give you full control of your family’s internet use, and dynamic QoS means you’ll get the best connection where you need it most.
Security is something we loved when it came to this model, and in this day and age, who wouldn’t? The AC2300 comes equipped with advanced cyber threat protection, including vulnerability assessments and instant alerts that keep you updated on how secure your network really is.
The AC2300 is going to give you everything you need and more, you just need to be willing to pay for it. The extra layer of security with this model made it one of our favorites though, and you can’t put a price on protecting your sensitive information.
- Top of the line security features
- Fast data transfer speeds
- Smart parental controls to curtail browsing
- Simple and secure cloud storage
- Only four Ethernet ports
- Larger than other models
Much like the other Nighthawk models, the X4S delivers high data transfer speeds, so you can be sure it’ll hold up against whatever you may be doing.
The X4S is loaded with a powerhouse of a processor – 1.7 GHz dual core to be exact – which means no lagging whatsoever when it comes to streaming 4K video or games. You’re also free to move about pretty much anywhere with this router, Quad Stream Wave 2 WiFi delivers an extreme range that’s unmatched by many other models.
Speed is what you’re paying for with this model – NETGEAR calls it the fastest dual band router they have and we were blown away by how seamlessly we were able to do just about everything.
There’s no hiding the cost here, but we felt we truly did get what we paid for with the X4S. We were able to game, stream, and surf the web simultaneously across multiple devices without so much as a slight drop in connectivity. You won’t be disappointed.
- Incredibly fast
- Extreme range
- Powerful processor
- USB 3.0 and eSATA ports
- The most expensive model here
- Large device