Gaming Router

8 Best Gaming Routers for the Home

The best gaming routers will ensure that your online gaming session will never be interrupted ever again. If you are someone who spends plenty of time in front of your computer – playing video games and such – then you probably encounter stressful and annoying lag once in a while or most of the time. This usually disrupts your gaming momentum and destroys your gameplay – which is the last thing that you wanted to experience. If you are tired of this recurring problem every time you play, then maybe it’s the right time to invest in a gaming router to block all those spikes and never let them bother your intense gaming again.

Gaming routers will facilitate network traffic specifically for your games, all thanks to the micro mechanism known as Quality of Service or QoS that assists in making sure that your gaming experience won’t be disrupted by your sister watching Netflix or brother downloading their games. Apart from this, you also want to look for the MU-MIMO so that each member in your home can experience the uninterrupted online gaming session that they deserve. Wired connections are hailed as the smartest way to establish a connection with your online games – and avid gamers and experts couldn’t agree more.

However, you still want to guarantee that your gaming router is an outstanding router. This means that your gaming router should not only have Gigabit Ethernet ports but also with the newest Wi-Fi standards, which is the Wi-Fi 5. When you have numerous antennae that you can easily adjust to improve wireless speeds and enhance signal strength, you got yourself a heavy-duty back up to achieve the best online gaming experience.

Since there are a lot of new mobile gaming platforms, as well as 4K-capable systems – for both PC and console – you might find yourself wanting to invest in an incredible router to reinforce your high-speed games with little to no lag – specifically if your goal is to stream games as well.

There are plenty of high-performance gaming routers on the market today and most of them are specifically engineered to match different gaming situations. The most popular is the Nighthawk XR500 from Netgear. It is a robust router specially designed for gamers – but not limited to such. If you are looking for the ideal gaming router, here’s a list of the top-rated router for your particular gaming requirements.

Best Gaming Router You Should Consider

The ASUS RT-AC88U Wireless-AC3100 Gaming Router is seasoned with the newest 4×4 802.11ac MU-MIMO technology and 8 Gigabit LAN ports powered by ASUS-exclusive AiProtection designed by Trend Micro. It has a dual-band RT-AC88U that offers the fastest wireless speed that you are looking for and protection that you highly-needed. It also has a total data rate of 3167 Mbps that comes with Smart Connect and complete home extended coverage to guarantee quick and consistent connectivity for every Wi-Fi device that you have at home.

Rate: 5 / 5

5/5

Pros

  • AiProtection Powered by Trend Micro offers multi-stage vulnerability prevention and security
  • Built-in access to WTFast Gamers Private Network or GPN provides low, consistent ping times
  • Comes with a dual-band that has the newest 802.11ac 4x4 that reaches as much 3167 Mbps throughput
  • 33% greater 2.4 GHz coverage that comes with 4 transmits, 4 receives (4T4R) antenna design, which can reach the widest coverage available that’s as much as 5000 SQFT.
  • Expansive connectivity options that come with 8 x Gigabit LAN ports and can accommodate 8 Ethernet-compatible devices simultaneously.

Cons

  • Issue connecting with 5G band
  • Loud cooling fans
  • Relatively slow SSD

Whether you are collecting more resources, fighting a MOB, or conquering the battlegrounds, your survival is greatly affected even by seconds of network lag. To defeat this real-world enemy, the Archer C5400x Gaming Router operates efficiently at the center of your network command with the help of cutting-edge 1.8 GHz 64-bit quad-core CPU working on each service, application, and thread. It also has three coprocessors that balance out the WiFi demand. With this, the Archer C5400x was able to provide unmatched gameplay and the power you deserve to fight enemies with confidence and zero worries about lag spikes.

Rate: 4.5 / 5

4.5/5

Pros

  • Cutting-edge 1.8 GHz 64-bit quad-core CPU that enhances loading time. Versatile optimization that focuses on traffic to prevent latency.
  • RangeBoost improves reception and beamforming delivers specific Wi-Fi to maintain devices connection even at farther distances compared to other routers.
  • Link Aggregation offers one LAN that comes with the WAN port or combines two of the eight Gigabit LAN ports to multiply wireless speed.
  • AC5400 tri-band Wi-Fi over two 5 GHz bands or one 2.4 GHz. Airtime Fairness and MU-MIMO optimize total throughput, as well as response rates.
  • State of the art antivirus that works from the router to secure all the connected devices from potential cyber hazards and threats.

Cons

  • Problem with 5G band
  • Not compatible with all VPN providers

The ASUS RT-AC86U Gaming Router is engineered to provide exceptional network performance with its 1.8ghz Dual-Core processor that comes with the newest 802.11ac MU-MIMO technology. Optimize your online gaming experience with its game-enhancing adaptive QoS, built-in network security powered by AiProtection, and gamer’s private network provided by WTFast.

Rate: 4.3 / 5

4.3/5

Pros

  • Engineered for an online gaming experience that’s lag-free with seamless 4K Ultra-High-Definition streaming powered by adaptive QoS and WTFast game accelerator.
  • Dual-band (2.4 5 GHz) with ac2900 wireless router and newest 802.11ac MU-MIMO technology for faster data transfer with a speed of up to 2900 Mbps.
  • 1.8 GHz 32 Bit dual-core processor maximizes network traffic and improves connectivity speeds from the 4x gigabit LAN ports and USB 3.1 Gen1.
  • Protection supported by trend micro offers built-in 24/7 protection from outside threats and attacks, regulating them before they could damage your connected devices or network.

Cons

  • Troublesome power supply
  • Difficult to connect with the 5G band

The ASUS ROG GT-AX11000 provides that quickest Wi-Fi current to 802.11ac devices and NextGen 802.11ax devices. It also creates gigabit speeds while giving a wide range for devices that need quick and stable uploading, gaming, and streaming simultaneously.

Rate: 4.1 / 5

4.1/5

Pros

  • Tripe-tier Game Acceleration – improve game traffic with device, game server prioritization, and game packet.
  • State of the art Hardware provides unparalleled performance with 2.5G gaming port for maximum performance and 1.8GHz quad-core CPU.
  • ASUS WRT allows reinforcement for OpenVPN, control, and advanced surveillance that includes the use of device bandwidth, as well as usage or device prioritization.
  • You have your gaming mesh network that works with the ASUS AiMesh Wi-Fi system for faultless and complete home coverage.

Cons

  • Signal disruption

The TP-Link (Archer C5400) Gaming Router delivers massive Wi-Fi connection even with multiple connected devices and smartly provides accelerated Wi-Fi to each device for seamless gaming and 4K UHD streaming. The cutting-edge NitroQAM and 4-stream send more than 5400Mbps of total Wi-Fi throughput to one 2.4GHz (1000Mbps) and two 5GHz (2167Mbps) bands. Apart from this, the Archer also sports the MU-MIMO technology that offers as much as 3x faster Wi-Fi performance while steaming and gaming on numerous devices. Furthermore, it’s Smart Connect maintains the greatest connection availability for every connected device. Give yourself a favor and experience ultra-speedy connections when playing your favorite online games and boundless entertainment when watching your well-loved movies and TV series – all thanks to the high-level 1.4GHz dual-core CPU and combined 3 co-processors.

Rate: 4.0 / 5

4/5

Pros

  • AC5400 Tri-Band that comes with 4-Stream and NitroQAM technology that offers as much as 5400Mbps Wi-Fi speeds in two 5GHz (2167Mbps) bands and one 2.4GHz (1000Mbps).
  • Quicker Wi-Fi for each connected device since it offers multi-user support from cutting-edge MU-MIMO technology. The Smart Connect automatically gives every device the greatest available band to experience nothing but maximum performance.
  • Experience 4K HD video while streaming and playing online games simultaneously with quicker Wi-Fi available to all connected devices.
  • Compatible with Alexa for efficient voice control and IFTTT for easy smart home personalization.
  • Ultra-efficient connections with zero lag spikes and disruptions. This is because of the competent 1.4GHz dual-core CPU with combined 3 co-processors. System requirements include NT, Microsoft Windows 98SE, UNIX or Linux, MAC OS, 2000, NetWare, Windows 8/8.1/10, and XP.

Cons

  • Much better if the firmware is not updated to prevent issues
  • Recurring problems with connectivity

The TP-Link (Archer C4000) Gaming Router delivers and receives high-speed Wi-Fi to numerous devices simultaneously. Allow the C4000 to do all the operation by assigning wireless devices to the quickest band so you and your family can enjoy lag-free 4K streaming and ping-free gaming at the same time.

Rate: 3.8 / 5

3.8/5

Pros

  • Wide-ranging coverage with beamforming and RangeBoost technology for optimum coverage and performance.
  • AC4000 tri-band WiFi offers as much as 1625 Mbps on every 5 GHz band and 750 Mbps on the 2.4 GHz band. You can operate every connection with outstanding speed since it has a heavy-duty 1.8 GHz quad-core CPU.
  • Secure your network with the state of the art WiFi encryption and cover-all antivirus security. You can also control, limit, and track internet usage to help you personalize Wi-Fi connection for each device and person.
  • Connect plenty of other devices while also optimizing performance with Smart Connect, Airtime Fairness, and Multi-User MIMO.
  • Double wired connection speeds that come from 2 Gbps and 1 Gbps, as well Link Aggregation and Supported Operating Systems that include Linux, Mac OS 10.12, and Windows 10.

Cons

  • Much better if it has a greater power adapter

The NETGEAR Nighthawk Pro XR500 Gaming Router utilizes cutting-edge software to maximize your internet connection by decreasing lag spikes, normalizing ping, maintaining you in the game through trustworthy and consistent wireless and wired connectivity for ultra-speedy gaming. You can also customize your gaming dashboard to display real-time bandwidth utilization ping, devices, and plenty of other parameters. Nighthawk reduces the lag that allows you to achieve a stable local connection with the help of Geo filter or allow the quality of service for assigned bandwidth and assigned gaming devices.

Rate: 3.7 / 5

3.7/5

Pros

  • Upgrade your Wi-Fi with the AC2600 dual-band router that provides snappy speeds that can reach as much as 2.6 Gbps.
  • Reduces ping and optimizes performance with the four 1-Gigabit Ethernet ports for paired-connectivity, lag-free, and .7 GHz dual-core processor network productivity.
  • Place your gaming traffic in a specialized express lane with the state of the art quality of Service that skips network congestion and minimizes lag jitters, jumps, and spikes.
  • Take advantage of the geo-filtering and make each millisecond count. It enables you to connect to the players and servers that are closest to your location for you to respond to and take over.
  • Track your game ping and network in real-time so you can find out and identify who is reaching the bandwidth via application and device.

Cons

  • Connectivity problems
  • Overheats

What Makes a Gaming Router

All the gaming routers presented in this list were carefully tested in a real setting using different kinds of high bandwidth applications, such as file transfers, 4K video, general web surfing, and online gaming. The newest model of the router’s firmware displayed to the router at the start of the testing. All the devices that the customers utilized were stable throughout the whole testing and operating of the brand new software and drivers. Testing was carried out by utilizing NetPerf software. A computer that features a Gigabit Ethernet port (10/100/1000) was utilized to deliver the data through a wired connection going to the router through a CAT 5e cable. A total of three test runs were performed in every wireless adapter at every 5 GHz and 2.4 GHz frequencies, at both far and close distances, using the maximum throughput for every parameter recorded.

When you are looking for a game router, you should determine which model of Wi-Fi it can support. The major two you might want to watch out for are Wi-Fi 5 (802.11ac) and Wi-Fi 6 (802.11ax) since they provide the quickest wireless speeds as of the present. Moreover, during your shopping for a router, you’ll find models that are engineered for Wi-Fi 4 (802.11n) that have a very sleek look, thanks to their cheap cost, however, you should stay away from this thirst trap. Take note that Wi-Fi 4 is already outmoded and it delivers bad speeds, unlike its aforementioned contemporary counterparts. Apart from this, you might want to look for a router that is a dual-band.

Single-band routers provide limited support for the 2.4GHz band only, which works for downloading and web browsing only. On the other hand, the dual-band routers incorporate another 5.0GHz channel that offers much quicker and reliable wireless speeds. Apart from this, you’ll also come across Tri-Band routers – some of them are mentioned on the list discussed above – that offers another 5GHz band you can specifically assign for gaming only. To sum it all up, here is a list of several considerations you should pay attention when purchasing gaming routers:

Quality of Service – always remember that not every network traffic is made the same and the QoS enables the router to decide which kind of data should be considered as a priority. The best gaming routers are engineered to prioritize games without altering other features in the settings. This guarantees that when you are in the middle of killing your enemy in the game, the server will prioritize it over other traffic on your network. 

Wi-Fi vs Ethernet – though there are plenty of upgrades in Wi-Fi over the past years, the idea is still clear: playing using a wired connection is much better compared to playing through Wi-Fi. As much as possible, invest in a router that can offer ultra-efficient Ethernet ports to accommodate all your consoles, as well as your gaming PC. If this can’t happen, then the 802.11ac will work best for your gaming needs. You can choose from dual-band or tri-band, but usually having two is sufficient enough to give you a seamless gaming experience. However, if your consoles and gaming PC is backed up by 5 GHz Wi-Fi, upgrading to a tri-band is highly-suggested.

Conclusion

Gaming routers are not simply a marketing stratagem. These devices truly have significant features that can level-up your gaming experiences such as additional Gigabit Ethernet ports, gaming traffic prioritization, competent router hardware, and the newest wireless standards. However, it’s also vital to take note that not all of these features are limited to gaming routers. The best gaming routers also have additional features like dual-band 802.11ac Wi-Fi, Gigabit Ethernet, and QoS.

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