Comparing a Few Gigabit Routers

Feb 18, 2018
I'm going to be getting new internet soon that exceeds 100mbs (150mbs), and the internet provider I'm interested in said I need a gigabit router, which I currently do not have.

I have looked around a bit and found a few fairly decently priced routers for what I need, and I'd like some of your opinions on which may be the best.

From user ratings alone the touch pad router seems the best, but amazon reviews in my opinion are unreliable.

The reason you can't really trust end consumer reviews is they are many times too stupid to realize that many of their problems are the house they have the router in and the neighbors around them with wifi devices causing interference. It is extremely hard even for commercial reviewers to get a test situation that reliably means anything outside their test lab.

Be very careful of the router numbers game lately. In general there is not huge difference in wifi coverage between major routers. Even fairly inexpensive routers with gigabit ports can pass data at the full gigabit rate due to hardware acceleration.

So now the router manufactures try to compete on other numbers to get you to buy their product. You have to be very careful to not be tricked. To use these features your end device must also support them.

On the first router for example they claim 600mpbs on the 2.4g radio. This is 3 channels at 200mbps each. The encoding used to get 200mbps is not actually part of the official standard for 802.11n. It is part of 802.11ac but 802.11ac technically does not operate on 2.4g. Because this is non standard it is not common to find it supported by end devices. It will drop back to the standard 150mbps per channel or 450.

Even on things that are part of the standard like 3x3 mimo. What that means is your end devices must have 3 antenna which is not really common. Most only have 2. So it will drop back to 2x2.

TPlink makes pretty good routers in general. Which you choose is going to depend on the end devices you plan to use with it.