Question Wifi Router Suggestions 2019

jerusalem

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Mar 19, 2010
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I have been having a really hard time sifting through the 800000 different routers on the market today. It seems most of the expensive features revolve around the ability to push high-speed and consistency via wifi.
*I have 300Mbps down / 30Mbps up cable internet on an Arris SB8200 Modem.

1)All of my game consoles and PC will be hard wired either directly to the router or via a switch if the router i get has only 4 ports.
2)My Wifi devices include phone, kindles, laptops (I have a USB-C to ethernet adapter if i need to bust it out periodically).
So Realistically it doesn't seem like I will see a big difference in devices due to my most often used connections being wired.
3)How important is the chip running the router? i see dual-core and quad-core 64-bit 1.8GHz processors and 1GB RAM in the higher end routers.
ETC) I am mostly looking for people's experiences with different routers. If i was choosing just on feature sets the Asus GT-AC5300 seems like a great fit but at $350 I would expect better user reviews and this gives me pause. Same goes for the Asus RT-AX88U I like the futureproof of the AX band and it also has x8 ethernet ports but again $308 with so many negative reviews including negative interactions with Asus customer support (I would hope spending that much on a router would get you some mediocre customer service when it isn't working as advertised)

I have never used features like wtfast, private gaming networks etc. and interested if they actually do anything or are worth a damn.
Any anecdotes "I use this router for 2 years with no issues or i tried this one and it was terrible so i bought THIS one" would be great. Just kind of trying to get some votes for different routers. There is so much marketing and hype in this market now and way too many products.
 
If the majority of your traffic is wired just buy a mid level router. Does no good to buy a router than can do 4x4 mimo when you phone or laptop only has 2 antenna. This is the same for many other features that many end devices do not support. 802.11ax is all pre certification from what I have read nothing will be certified until fall 2019 at earliest. Hard to say really a $50 router may meet your needs. I would look at most for 3x3 mimo on both 2.4 and 5. That likely is overkill also since most mobile devices only have 2 antenna because of size.

I would wait on 802.11ax stuff. By the time you have device that can really use it the price likely will have dropped a lot. Maybe go a less expensive router now and plan to replace in about a year or two when we know how good 802.11ax really works.

The processor speed means little in most cases. The majority of the router have all the traffic bypass the CPU to get high speed nat. Even the largest routers will bottleneck at under 350mbps if you use the CPU. The key reason you want fast cpu speed is if you run say vpn or maybe some fancy firewall or parental controls. Most of it is marketing hype. The CPU speed does not affect the wifi performance because they are different chips and the cpu does very little when you have the nat accelerator running.

A lot of that wtfast and other stuff make little difference. Some of it is just pre build QoS settings.....but if you use QoS you lose the NAT accelerator on most routers. Some of the other stuff is VPN. VPN in general make gaming slower but if you happen to have a ISP that has a poor path to gaming data centers "maybe" a vpn is faster. Mostly this is used in asia where many ISP do not have access to the best undersea fiber paths.
 
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jerusalem

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Thank you for the thorough response. This is kind of where my reading/thinking has lead me as well. I have seen some of the higher end routers run VPN + non-VPN simultaneously so your gaming is not affected. Again it seems there will be little performance noticed real world though. I am just one of those over analyzers who wants to see all facets before pulling the trigger on purchases etc. I'm a lil crazy lol. Thank you very much for the great answer though.
 

kanewolf

Titan
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If you want the best WIFI, then multiple WIFI source (access points) connected back to your main router via ethernet is what you want. A wired only router is then an option. Mikrotik has a low cost wired only router called the HEX. If you don't mind spending the money, then Ubiquiti has a complete infrastructure that is very good.
 

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