Best Wireless Routers: Reviews & Buying Guide

best wireless router

When it comes to buying the best wireless router, we need to think of some essential things such as type of a router, your budget, and purpose of buying one. Moreover, there are some extra networking devices also available on the market, which you connect to your router to improve the range or give your router a boost including indoor/outdoor WiFi extenders or repeaters, wireless access points, and Powerline adapters.

So, I’ve cleared everything about wireless routers and try to divide them into some categories so that you can choose as per your needs. However, I’ll also recommend my all-time favorite router, which will not only be a budget-friendly but also support the following things.

I’ve created separate pages; you just need to click your desired router and read full reviews, buying guide, and tips.

Note: Before you go through this article, I want you to read about the difference between modem and router.

Now let’s understand different types, budgets, and purposes of routers with additional networking devices.

Type:

  1. Best DD-WRT Wireless Router
  2. Best VPN Wireless Router
  3. Best Wired Router
  4. Best Dual Wan Router
  5. Best Cable Modem Router Combo
  6. Best Travel Routers

Budget:

  1. Best Budget Wireless Routers
  2. Best WiFi Routers Under $50
  3. Best WiFi Routers Under $100
  4. Best WiFi Routers Under $150
  5. Best WiFi Routers Under $200

Purpose:

  1. Best WiFi routers for home
  2. Best WiFi routers for gaming
  3. Best WiFi routers for streaming
  4. Best WiFi routers for Long Range
  5. Best WiFi routers for multiple devices
  6. Best Tri-band WiFi Routers
  7. Best WiFi routers for large home

So, what is the best wireless router for 2020? After searching and diving into networking devices, I found the NETGEAR Nighthawk X4S AC2600 the best wireless router in 2020. It has everything, whether you use it for home, small office, and even commercial use. It won’t disappoint you.

Here Are My Three Best Picks For Wireless Routers:

  1. NETGEAR Nighthawk X4S AC2600 R7800 – Overall Best
  2. ASUS Gigabit WiFi Gaming Router (AC3100) – For Gaming
  3. NETGEAR R6700 Nighthawk AC1750 R6000 – For Home

1. NETGEAR Nighthawk X4S AC2600 R7800 – Overall Best

best wifi router

My Views:

After testing more than 67 wireless routers, I end up with Netgear Nighthawk X4s. I used it in my office, home, and department. In terms of performance, features, and price, this is my all time go to router. That’s why it deserves the first position on my list.

Overview:

The Netgear Nighthawk x4s is a dual-band router and ensures faster WiFi speeds up to 2600mbps using both bands (800Mbps @ 2.4Ghz + 1733Mbps @ 5Ghz). It is equipped with a powerful 1.7Ghz dual-core processor, which allows simultaneously stream to multiple devices with advanced MU-MIMO technology with Quad-stream. It comes with four external high-gain antennas located on the back side of the router.

Pros & Cons:

I like:

  1. It is compatible with Amazo Alexa/ Echo, which allows voice control.
  2. Dynamic QoS lets you prioritize connected devices; it becomes beneficial when it comes to playing games online or video streaming.
  3. The nighthawk App allows easy setup and instant internet access by pausing and resuming.
  4. It supports MU-MIMO and beamforming+ for better range.
  5. Two USB 3.0 ports for external hard disk or any other storage devices.

I don’t like:

  1. Its LED lights are quite bright. However, you can turn them off if needed.

Summary:

I installed Nighthawk x4s in my office, and then I found that there were some dead zones where this router didn’t perform that good. However, my office is around 5000 sq.ft, which is a lot for $150 router; therefore, I had to use some wireless access points in order to cover the entire office. I would recommend this router for home and small business.

2. ASUS RT-AC88U Gigabit WiFi Router (AC3100) – For Gaming

best wifi router

My Views:

The second router on my list is Asus AC3200 RT-AC88U. I took this router keeping gamers in mind. However, The nighthawk X4s is also good at gaming but compared to Asus RT-AC88U, it won’t give you that good gaming experience as it comes with WTFast game accelerator.

Overview:

The Asus AC3200 RT-AC88U is a dual-band MU-MIMI compatible router. It has A protection network security called AiProtection which is powered by Trend Micro. As Asus advertised, The 1024-QAM technology makes this router 80% faster WiFi speeds than the competition using both 5Ghz and 2.4Ghz bands and delivers up to 3100Mbps. It comes with eight x4T4R external antennas that are capable of providing you the widest coverage up to 5000 Sq.ft.

Pros & Cons:

I like:

  1. The Asus AiProtection is incredible and ensures online safety.
  2. The eight Gigabit LAN ports to connect eight wired devices at once.
  3. Dynamic QoS with Parental control.
  4. In-built WTfast gaming acceleration for the better and improved gaming experience.
  5. Asus USA based customer supports.

I don’t like:

  1. A bit pricey.

Summary:

I’ve tried so many gaming routers, but The Asus RT-AC88U is the best in terms of gaming and overall performance. However, the router is a bit expensive if compared to others, but it is worth the money since it offers many advanced features, including AiProtection and WTFast Accelerator, ETC. So if you are looking for a gaming router, then this ASUS RT-AC88U is for you.

3. NETGEAR R6700 Nighthawk AC1750 R6000 – Budget Pick

best wifi router

My Views:

The Netgear R6700 is another budget-friendly option for you. I picked R6700 because of the features it offers under $100. Being the only reason, this router deserves the third position on my list. However, if I compare to Asus RT-AC88U and X4S, The Netgear R6700 is far away in terms of performance and range. So, No doubt! Money talks.

Overview:

The Netgear R6700 is a dual-band router. It ensures faster WiFi speeds of up to 1750Mbps using both 5Ghz and 2.4Ghz bands. It is equipped with a robust 1Ghz dual-core processor, which can easily handle multiple devices at once up to 12. It has one USB 3.0 port that lets you connect USB HDD or any other storage device to it. The rear panel of the router houses three external antennas along with four LAN Gigabit Ethernet Ports.

Pros & Cons:

I like:

  1. It is compatible with Alexa and works excellent.
  2. The parental control feature allows content filter, screen management, and connected devices’ data usages monitoring.
  3. Setup is also easy and comes with well-explained user manual.
  4. It lets you connect 12 and more devices at once.
  5. Great price.

I don’t like:

  1. LED status lights are bright and huge. Sometimes it becomes annoying.

Summary:

The Netgear R6700 is going to be the best option for those who are under budget yet want a powerful router. Moreover, It is the best selling router on Amazon with over 17,000 user reviews and 4.2-star ratings. After comparing with the competition, this router was excellent in terms of overall performance.

I consider this Netgear R6700 is an ideal option for home users and comes in under 100 bucks and less.

Buying Guide

This guide will help you understand the basic and brief knowledge of routers. It includes types, tips, buying guide, and my thoughts.

What Are The Different Types Of Wireless Router?

  1. DD-WRT WiFi Router
  2. VPN WiFi Router
  3. Wired Router
  4. Dual Wan Router
  5. Cable Modem Router Combo
  6. Travel Routers
  7. What are DD-WRT Routers?

Let’s begin with the word “DD-WRT.” The DD-WRT is a firmware based on Linux. It was designed for one of the Linksys routers, primarily WRT54G series. In other words, it was introduced by Linksys with WRT series’ first router WRT54G. If you want to know everything in detail, then check my complete guide and best DD-WRT routers 2020.

What are VPN Routers?

I start with the word “VPN.” The VPN stands for virtual private networks. It is considered the most secured internet connection type. We generally use VPN to secure or encrypt our internet connection.

Now, the VPN routers also look the same as the typical gigabit routers. However, VPN routers come with in-built VPN functionality, meaning they have VPN client software installed. If you want to read more about VPN and the best VPN routers 2020, go and check my complete article.

What is a wired router?

The wired routers are used to forward data packets from one network to another. It is a kind of networking device. Generally, we install a wired router in our home and the small office. A wired router offers more management functions compared to an enterprise-class router and router.

You should read my entire article ‘the best-wired routers 2020.’

What are dual wan routers?

As it implies, a router that has two WAN internet ports. Meaning, these routers allow two internet connections at the same time. We use these types of devices when the internet becomes very important to us. In other words, when we don’t want to rely on a single ISP, we use a dual wan router.

Since it has two WAN ports, so it allows us to connect two different internet connections from different ISP using load balancing feature. I’ve created a separate page for ‘the best dual wan routers 2020’.

What is a cable modem router combo?

It is a combination of two devices: a router and a cable modem. So, wasting money on a standalone router and modem, it is better for us to buy a combo device, right. For more detail, you can read “best cable modem router combo 2020.”

What is a travel router?

It is self-explanatory, it is a WiFi router yet reliable, portable, and lightweight. Being compact and small, it can be carried anywhere you go. The travel routers are designed to managing devices on public WiFi networks by simplifying the connection process. So it is all up to you, whether it is airport, hotels, or any public place. You can go through the article ‘best travel routers 2020’ for more info.

Can I Expect A Good Router Under Budget?

Budget means what? A number that you set as per your requirement, right? Yes, we should choose a router according to your needs. For example, if you buy a router which is expensive and comes with lots of advanced features, and you are not going to use those good looking, beautiful, and impressive features, meaning a waste of money.

For that, I tried to make it easy for you when it comes to budget. Simply, I’ve divided it into four separate pages such as:

  1. Best Routers Under $50
  2. Best Routers Under $100
  3. Best Routers Under $150
  4. Best Routers Under $200

Go through any of the pages you want and find the best one for you.

What Should Be The Purpose Of Buying A Wireless Router?

I want you to think about the purpose of buying any router. In simple words, we usually purchase gadgets according to our needs, such as home, office, and commercial purposes. So, we should also assess our target for a router too so that we can make a smart deal.

And your purpose can be anything. For example – best wireless routers for home, gaming, streaming, long range, multiple devices, tri-band, and large homes.

Which Routers Are Compatible With Most USA Internet Service Provider?

The popular USA Internet Service Providers are Comcast, Verizon Fios, Time Warner, Centurlink, Cox, and Charter Spectrum. However, it is impossible for a single router to support all of these. That is why sometimes it becomes a task to find according to ISPs. Don’t worry, at Pickmycablemodem; you will be able to find routers that are compatible with most USA ISPs. To make it simple, I’ve created six separate pages such as:

  1. Comcast Compatible Wireless Routers
  2. Verizon Fios Compatible Wireless Routers
  3. Time Warner Compatible Wireless Routers
  4. Centurylink Compatible Wireless Routers
  5. Cox Compatible Wireless Routers
  6. Charter Spectrum Compatible Wireless Routers

What Are The Other Essential Networking Devices Available On The Market?

There are so many networking devices are available on the market that you can connect to your wireless router. However, I am not going to include all of them but will let you know the essential devices.

And they are:

  1. Extenders or Repeaters
  2. Wireless Access Points
  3. Powerline Adapters
  4. Home Firewalls
  5. PCI Wireless Cards

I found these devices very useful when it comes to improving the overall performance of a router. You can click and read in detail.

Final Verdict:

Finding the best wireless router has never been easy. However, I made it easy for you by categorizing them according to type, budget, and purpose. In this process, I’ve spent so many hours and money so that I can recommend the best one for you.

I would be happy if I could help you with this article. In returns, I also want you to let me know how helpful it has been for you. For that, you can comment below which takes hardly 2 mins.

Thank you.

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