Best gigabit routers in 2022


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Budget Pick

A great gigabit router for those on a budget

TP Link Archer AX50 Wireless Gigabit Router

TP-Link Archer AX50 Wireless Gigabit Router


Things to consider when purchasing a gigabit router

Everyone out there who spends a considerable time of their day online wants faster internet. A good Gigabit router can help in providing you with reliable and speedy internet access. The real struggle is getting through all of the technical specs and jargon and understanding how all that makes your internet experience better.

Here are some things to look out for:

Compatibility

Compatibility between the type of router you buy and your internet service provider’s service is highly important. Most ISPs will give you a modem and router and set up the Wi-Fi by themselves within your home. Usually, the modem and the router are combined into a single device. 

The Modem is what connects broadband internet to your home, and the router is what connects that internet to your devices via Ethernet or Wi-Fi. For the most part, routers provided by ISPs are not the best, and they are a bit lackluster when it comes to features.

Some routers may struggle with different ISP services, so you check with your internet company beforehand.

Types of routers

With the dozens of options out there, there are bound to be different routers and Wi-Fi systems on the market. Here are some of the obvious ones:

Single routers

A single router needs to plug into your modem via an Ethernet cable. While this restricts where you can place the router, you can manage a larger distance with clever cable management and a longer cable. Of course, the Wi-Fi signal will be strongest near the router and drop off as you move further away.

Many single routers can solve this problem thanks to a better range. This is done by using multiple external antennas. 

What are Mesh Systems?

Mesh systems have recently started gaining popularity, such as Google’s Nest Wi-Fi system. Mesh Wi-FI is the answer to coverage woes. This type of system uses a central hub as the main router, and different access points scattered across the house or building. 

You can achieve wider coverage this way, as any device you use will connect to the nearest node by default. Downsides include cost and the often unintuitive setup process.

How fast are gigabit routers?

First, let’s differentiate between Megabytes/second and Megabits/second. Megabits/second is the industry standard used to denote the speed of the internet connection and the router. 100 Megabits is equal to 12.5 megabytes.

So, if you buy a Gigabit router (1000 Megabits/s), then that is going to give you a maximum download speed of 125 Megabytes/second. If you do have a Gigabit connection, then that’s great. Of course, remember that this is the theoretical maximum. Due to interference, obstacles, and thick walls, this speed can be much lower.

Best router for gigabit ethernet: understanding the specs

Now, you know the basics of what to look for when shopping for the best Gigabit router. Still, there are a few technical specs that we have not talked about yet. Let’s have a quick look.

Wifi standards

Wi-FI standards are usually represented as “802.11 ac” or something similar. What does this mean? Well, the body that sets these Wi-Fi standards says that the number “802” represents computer networks, while the “.11” part is for Wi-Fi or Wireless Local Lan (WLAN).

The 802.11 part is usually followed by suffixes like 802.11a/b/g/n or 802.11ac and ax. These suffixes indicate the speed and reliability of the connection. You can also think of these as protocols. 802.11ac Wi-FI is also known as Wi-Fi 5, and 802.11ax is known as Wi-Fi 6 or 6E.

Quite confusing, we know. For the bare minimum you want to buy an 802.11ac router, but going with a Wi-Fi 6 or 802.11ax router will be much better for futureproofing. 

Dual-Band wifi explained

Wi-Fi comes in the form of different protocols. These protocols support different bands and frequencies. Most routers will support 2.4GHz and 5GHz Wi-Fi. A dual-band router can support both bands at the same time. 

The main difference between both of these bands is that 2.4GHz Wi-Fi provides more coverage, while 5GHz Wi-Fi is generally faster due to more bandwidth. Each of these bands is backward compatible as well.

Look out for ports

Apart from your phone, PC, tablet, or other portable devices, you are much better off using a wired ethernet connection. This is beneficial for desktop PCs, consoles, server racks, and more. A hardwired connection is always going to be more stable and will provide better speeds.

Most single routers these days will have at least two or three Ethernet ports. However, this is less of an issue, as if you need more Ethernet ports, you can always get an Ethernet switch.

Best gigabit router

ASUS AX5700 WiFi 6 Gaming Router RT AX86U

ASUS AX5700 WiFi 6 Gaming Router (RT-AX86U)

Frequency Band

Dual- Band

Wi-Fi Protocol

802.11ax Wi-Fi 6

Ports

1x 2.5GbE, 4x GbE, 2x USB 3.0

Pros