If you want to be absolutely sure that it’s time to replace your WiFi router, we recommend a WiFi analysis and surveillance app like NetSpot. Before you spend money on a new router, you want to first check whether your existing router doesn’t perform poorly because of interference caused by nearby wireless networks and other electronic devices.
NetSpot can quickly discover all nearby wireless networks and display all the information you need to determine whether they might be causing issues. That means examining on which channels the networks transmit and ensuring that your own wireless router transmits on a channel with as little traffic as possible.
Also, NetSpot can create an easy-to-understand visual map of your wireless network, highlighting where the signal is the weakest and where it is the strongest. You may discover that your router actually provides a decent coverage apart from one or two areas. In that case, you could simply move the router elsewhere and use NetSpot to check whether the coverage has improved.
If NetSpot reveals that your router is really holding you back from enjoying your Internet connection to its full potential, it’s time to look for a replacement.
The most important thing is to know what you need. Are you a gamer who plays online competitive games? Do you like to stream high-definition movies and TV shows from the Internet? Or do you just want faster Internet speeds without paying for features you may or may not use?
Once you understand your own needs, it’s time to pick a few models that fit the bill and read WiFi router reviews to discover their pros and cons. Keep in mind that tech reviews are a picky bunch who likes to point out flaws that will go completely unnoticed by the average user. Use your judgment to separate valid critique from frivolous remarks.
After your new WiFi router finally arrives at your doorstep and you set it up, use NetSpot to measure how much have your Internet download and upload speeds improved and how strong the signal has become.
The number of available long-range routers has exploded in the recent years. This growth has been fueled mainly by the rise of online gaming and high-definition video streaming. But virtually everyone can benefit from owning the best long-range router on the market, and we know which router that is.
If you consider yourself to be an avid gamer, the ASUS GT-AC5300 is the router you’ve been looking for but didn’t know it exists. This tri-band gaming router has been designed to meet the needs of both competitive gamers who demand the lowest latency possible and live-streamers with huge bandwidth requirements caused by 4K streaming.
Inside the GT-AC5300 is a desktop-grade processor that manages the tri-band 802.11ac Wi-Fi and eight Gigabit LAN ports for wired devices. Gone is the typical uninspired web user interface because ASUS has replaced it with the ROG-themed Gaming Center interface, which offers an easy point-and-click control over every feature the router has to offer, such as the built-in intrusion detection system powered by Trend Micro technology.
As you might expect, the ASUS GT-AC5300 is an expensive router, but its steep price is well justified, and its performance is utterly impressive. Will you use all of its features? Probably not. Will you enjoy the edge the router can provide in online games? Absolutely.
The TP-Link ARCHER C9 is an unassuming router with three detachable antennas that provide an excellent signal strength and the support for beamforming, which allows the router to increase the signal strength to a chosen direction.
For less than $150, the ARCHER C9 can rival many routers that cost over $200. It has a dual-core processor clocked at 1 GHz, USB 3.0 and 2.0 ports for printer and file sharing, the ability to simultaneously broadcast on 2.4 and 5 GHz, as well as the support for the 802.11ac standard.
Thanks to the elegant design of the router, you won’t feel the need to hide it behind a curtain. Unfortunately, the router can’t be mounted on the wall, but it’s best to avoid placing routers close to large obstacles, anyway.
With a name like Nighthawk, it’s not hard to make a good first impression, and the Netgear Nighthawk X10 certainly doesn’t disappoint even when you get to know it better. This router is perfect for streaming fanatics because it comes with an integrated Plex media server, allowing users to enjoy movies, TV shows, music, videos, and photos from anywhere, across devices.
The Nighthawk X10 is powered by a fast quad-core processor that can provide network performance up to 7.2 Gbps and easily handle both 4K streaming and virtual reality gaming. The Nighthawk X10 is the first home router with a 10 Gigabit fiber port for fast NAS access. It also supports 60GHz 802.11ad WiFi, which is a future-proof WiFi standard that offers both impressive speeds and an excellent transmission range.
The router is by no means cheap, but it represents the cutting edge of home networking, and it’s guaranteed to perform exceptionally well under all circumstances.
You need to make sure your current WiFi router really needs a replacement before spending money on a new one. Use a WiFi analysis tool like NetSpot to quickly discover all surrounding wireless networks and see whether the issue might be caused by them crowding the same wireless channel as your router is using.
Also look around to see whether there are any physical obstacles near the router that might be just obstructing the signal from getting to where you need it. Some interference might be caused by nearby wireless networks and other electronic devices as well. If everything seems great otherwise, then it may be time to really upgrade your wireless equipment to achieve a better wireless coverage.
To choose the most suitable wireless router for your needs, you have to identify the latter ones. Do you need WiFi coverage to be strong enough for online gaming? Are you going to stream HD movies? Or do you just need a decent WiFi for work and occasional browsing?
Once you have some favorites, make sure to read reviews. Take the opinions with a grain of salt of course and only take note of reasonable ones. Make sure the place you are buying from has a friendly return policy in case you realize you need a slightly different product.
To beat the dead zones, a long-range wireless router is a must. To extend your WiFi signal into every corner of your space, look at these top-performing WiFi routers:
You can check how your WiFi signal distributes over your space with visual heat maps in NetSpot. With a color-coded heatmap it will be very easy to see where the wireless signal is strong enough and where it is weak and needs an extra boost.