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Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by max2, Jun 25, 2017.
What are some of the top Router brands please? Trying to figure out what brand to go with. Thanks.
Yeah but how much ?
Wired or wireless?
Both of course.
Ok I looked it up. Wireless
Depends on use. There are a range of routers and features out there. At home I have a NAS attached to my router. I wanted port aggregation for faster NAS speeds. Only a few offer this compatibility. Settled on the ASUS AC5300. Its pricy but worth it. It's one of the fastest and full featured out there. I feel comfortable this will last me for several years. ASUS in general has received positive feedback from reviews I've read.
My son uses a Netgear x8 R8500. Same league as mine. His has performed admirably as well.
It also depends on connected devices. I only have two devices that use 802.11n on the 2.4ghz channel, all the rest are 802.11ac on the 5ghz channel. Much, much faster.
As far a brands, I've had experience with ASUS, Netgear, D-link, or Linksys. Each have good and bad models. Read reviews. As far as wired, I don't have recent experience with one.
Ok thanks. May I ask if the iPad Pro 10.5 inch is 802.11a ? What about the iPhone 6s Plus ?
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Also I was thinking of the ASUS AC5300 router but is the newer ASUS ROG Rapture GT-AC5300 router better?
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How long do you get updates for these (ASUS, Belkin, Fritz - whatever) devices?
For years, I used an old Netgear router that never really got updates.
Now, I run pfSense on an old ALIX board and it recently became too weak and too small to load the updated images.
After 7 or 8 years....
Problem is, the hardware they sell for the higher bandwidths is really commercial-grade and quite expensive - but I get several years of updates and (hopefully) people behind it who don't open stupid security-holes for the sake of convenience.
Thats the router I have. Works great.
Both the iPad and iPhone 6 can connect to 802.11ac. Sorry my post read 802.11a it should have read 802.11ac. AC is the current standard and the fastest.
Again your intended use and where you locate the router is very important. The range of the 5ghz channel is not as good as 2.4ghz. Also, the father away from a wireless router you are the slower the speed gets.
When looking for a router you are going to see things like AC1750, AC1900, AC3200, etc. This indicates the speed of the router. But keep in mind these speeds are theoretical. For example the NetGear Nighthawk X6 is a tri-band router (one 2.4ghz channel, and two 5ghz channels) and supports up to 600Mbps on the 2.4GHz band, and 1300Mbps on both 5GHz signals. Hence, the "AC3200" in the product name: 1300+1300+600. All depends on the features you want. Obviously the cost goes up with features.
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That Amazon ad you linked to shows a combo at the bottom. The ASUS router and ARRIS modem. That is the exact combo I have. I use it on the Cox network, and average download speeds around 170 mbps. Very happy with the set up.
Max2, go over to smallnetbuilder site and you can get lots of reviews of routers and articles about WiFi etc.
As said, some here like to be future proof while others go for the du jour top speed as found on their devices (perhaps 802.11ac). Folks like myself tend to do the latter and go for a middle of the road well rated models in the "ac1900" range such as the Netgear 1900 or Asus 1900 models. After selecting the WiFi ability, we might zero in on certain features/bells and whistles.
Folks that only have 802.11n looking for a new router should actually get an 802.11ac router as time and time again tests have shown that known maker models of ac routers do a better n than just n routers.
Asus r68 with advanced tomato firmware or with Merlin fork firmware.
I sprung for an ASUS AC-5300 last December, and am very satisfied. Much better coverage than my old Time Capsule. Setup was easy (true, I'm not a novice) and the only time I've rebooted it was when I upgraded the firmware.
Because we all like a good laugh here, check out the Q&A over at Amazon. Hilarious, especially the guy who doesn't get the joke.
Not to hijack this thread, but do a lot of you buy your own router vs. what your provider will rent to you? I have xfinity gateway xb3 which provides up to 700mbps. Clearly from the numbers these other routers can easily double that: but do you truly see a difference between them?
Big difference in performance to me. Plus depending on features you can ad an external drive for backup, or connect a NAS for media serving, etc.
Besides renting a router at what $8 to $10 a month can ad up fast. Two years of rental fees can easily pay for a decent router.
If you moved or decided to run DSL instead of cable, you can still use the same router. A rental you would have to send back and start over with new service.
I tend to keep my routers for several years before upgrading, and that only happens if there is a new standard that will drastically improve service and performance. I then sell the old one and put it torwards a better one, so my cost is even lower.
I run an Edgerouter router and AP AC LR Access Point from Ubiquity and the difference from my former Comcast router/wifi combo is night and day. You've already pointed out the speeds but the true difference lies that the Edgerouter is highly configurable and has software updates almost monthly vs
What you get from a provider is usually a generic one size fits all unit that may have a wifi radio built in. To get max wifi range the radio needs to be ceiling mounted which is difficult to impossible with an all-in-one unit. Also Provider units have limited radio options, even their 5Ghz channels are limited and when I scan my surrounding airspace I see all my neighbors piled up on the same 5Ghz channel while I'm on a completely empty channel.
That said the Provider units are fine for most people because they are easy to set up and if you don't know much about the hardware they simplify it for you, at a cost of performance.
Never get it from the provider unless you plan to pay the monthly rent vs. own, and don't care what they give you.
I "upgraded" from an older Belkin to this guy lately, so far so good!
I still have the provider router only because it's FIOS and we have the TV part of the plan. The ActionTec router is passable, if not wondrously fast; you need the MOCA bits to run the TV part of it; and all of the "serious" computing in the house is wired, not wireless. If we ever decide to lose the TV part of FIOS we'll probably dump the router as well. (It's one of the newer ActionTec revs, "i" I think. The earliest revs were good for scraping mud off one's boots, maybe, or for raising one's blood pressure, but not so much for running a houseful of networked devices.)
No problem with hijacking my thread. I love more discussion!
Anyway I did get a ASUS AC-5300 too and love it. I just had one problem. Port forwarding wouldn't work. I tried everything then I finally tried redoing my whole pc and it started to work. Weird.
I did try resetting the router to factory defaults too but I don't think that did it.
Still don't get how I fixed port forwarding but whatever.
Oh yeah the biggest advantage of the new router I notice apps download faster on my iPad and iPhone so far.
Netgear Nighthawk R7000. It's a rock with very fast speeds and great range. Price has also come down significantly since it was released.
I thought about that one but didn't like the GUI.
You could always flash DD-WRT...
Several manufacturers have 2- or 4 port small form factor system-on-a-chip solutions. A Celeron J1900 can route gigabit network traffic at near line speed unless you do a lot of packet inspection or terminate a VPN in the router. Those can be had for $150. Anything newer will be more expensive, but also more capable/more future proof.
Just make sure the system has Intel brand network interfaces if you want to run pfSense.
Combine with wireless access points of your choice rather than opting for an all-in-one solution for best results and longevity.
I have settled with ASUS routers based on my personal experience with a lot of other products.