Best Wifi Router On Cnet

Wi-Fi 6, which was originally launched a few years ago, is the most recent version of Wi-Fi technology, and it provides quicker and more efficient home network performance compared to previous generations. As a result, the rising number of new, second-generation mesh router on Cnet choices is also worthy of consideration — particularly given the fact that so many of them are far less expensive than the router combination systems that came prior to them. Because, after all, having a reliable Internet connection is really beneficial if you’re spending a lot of time working or attending school from home as a result of the epidemic and have more than one connected device drawing on the available bandwidth.

Best Wireless Router On Cnet in 2022

1. TP-Link Archer AX6000

TP-Link AX6000 WiFi 6 Router(Archer AX6000) -Wireless Router, 8-Stream WiFi Router, 2.5G WAN Port, 8 Gigabit LAN Ports, MU-MIMO, 1.8GHz Quad-Core CPU

Features

  • JD Power Award - Highest in customer satisfaction for wireless routers 2017 and 2019
  • High Speed Wi-Fi 6 Router: AX6000 Dual Band Wi-Fi speed boosted by 1024QAM deliver wireless speed up to 5952 Mbps: 4804 Mbps (5GHz) and 1148 Mbps (2.4GHz)
  • Highly efficient: OFDMA increases average throughput by 4x in high density scenarios, compared with an 802.11ac standard wireless internet router; More devices can use Wi-Fi at the same time
  • Long Range Wi-Fi Coverage: 8 high-gain external antennas deliver a strong Wi-Fi signal throughout your home. BSS color technology ensure smooth and stable connections by eliminate signal interference probably from your neighbors, while beamforming and range boost deliver stronger and far-reaching network
  • Powerful Processing: 1.8 GHz Quad Core CPU and 2 co-processors eradicate latency and deliver stable Performance

Wi-Fi 6 is the most recent and fastest version of Wi-Fi, and we anticipate to see a slew of new models that support it in the near future. You may also update your Wi-Fi router from a budget router on Cnet right now to take advantage of the quicker, more efficient Wi-Fi performance provided by connected devices that support the new standard (the list is growing). Your previous devices will still be able to connect to the wireless network since Wi-Fi 6 is backward compatible — but your new wireless router will have no effect on how quickly they join the network.

As a result, most of us are probably still a little too early to invest in a new Wi-Fi 6 router on Cnet (and don’t forget that you’ll need an extremely fast internet connection to really notice a difference).

That being said, if you’re wanting to make the upgrade right away, or if you’re in the market for a new wireless router and want something that will be future-proofed for the next generation of Wi-Fi devices, the TP-Link Archer AX6000 is a great choice. Overall, it performed admirably in our performance testing, giving the best router on Cnet transfer rates we’ve yet seen, in addition to the outstanding range and minimal latency.

The AX6000 originally retailed for $350, but it has now dropped to $300, and we’ve even seen it listed for as little as $270 on certain websites. While it isn’t cheap even at that price, if you can get a deal on it, it is a worthwhile investment in order to transform your home network into a high-performance Wi-Fi 6 network.

2. Google Wifi

Google Wifi - AC1200 - Mesh WiFi System - Wifi Router - 4500 Sq Ft Coverage - 3 pack

Features

  • Google Wifi is a scalable flexible mesh Wifi system that blankets your home in reliable coverage and keeps buffering at bay; 1 Google Wifi point replaces your router and additional points expand your network to keep the connection fast in every room[1]
  • Google Wifi gives you whole home coverage; 1 Pack covers up to 1500 square feet and 3 Pack covers up to 4500 square feet; points work together to create a mesh network for more coverage
  • Intelligently works behind the scenes to make sure your Wifi remains fast so you can stream with speed[2]
  • Simple setup in a few steps; use the Google Home app to create your network and get online in minutes[3]
  • Parental controls let you manage screen time, restrict certain kinds of adult content, and pause Wifi to specific devices on your mesh network whenever you want

Google Wifi has been our #1 mesh router selection for the past three years, because to its fast wifi connectivity, quick setup, and helpful, easy-to-use app control features. Nest Wifi, the company’s second-generation follow-up, is quicker, more inexpensive, and just as simple to set up and use as the first. In addition, the range-expanding Points may now function as Google Assistant smart speakers. This, along with a new design that is available in a variety of colors, is intended to encourage you to keep these items out in the open, where they will function better.

Although it does not support Wi-Fi 6 (and Nest’s range-extending satellite devices do not have Ethernet ports, so you cannot connect them to the Wi-Fi router), Nest Wifi does include a few current-generation upgrades, including support for new WPA3 security standards and 4X4 MU-MIMO connections, which means that this mesh Wi-Fi router can provide faster top speeds to devices that use multipl technologies. All of this contributes to Nest’s mesh router being able to punch above its weight and beat the majority of competing mesh routers on Cnet with similar specifications.

The dual-band Nest Wifi, which costs $269 for a two-device setup that provides Wi-Fi coverage up to 3,800 square feet (a claim that was confirmed when we tested it in both a small home and the 5,800-square-foot CNET Smart Home), is the most well-rounded mesh router on the market right now and the first one I’d recommend for people who aren’t ready to make the switch to Wi-Fi 6 for their internet connection.

3. Netgear Orbi (dual-band, AC1200)

NETGEAR Orbi Whole Home Mesh WiFi System (RBK13) – Router replacement covers up to 4,500 sq. ft. with 1 Router & 2 Satellites

Features

  • NO MORE DEAD ZONES: Whole home mesh Wi-Fi coverage of up to 4,500 square feet Mesh technology helps you stay connected as you roam around home using a single network name.
  • WORKS WITH ALL INTERNET PROVIDERS: Replace your existing Wi-Fi Router (separate modem or gateway required). Compatible with any Internet provider, including cable, satellite, fiber, DSL, and more.
  • WIRED ETHERNET PORT: Plug in computers, game consoles, streaming players, and other nearby wired devices with a 1 Gigabit Ethernet port.
  • FAST WIRELESS SPEED: AC1200 Wi-Fi powers up to 1.2 Gbps of streaming HD video, gaming, or Internet surfing and downloads.
  • PARENTAL CONTROLS: Pause device internet access, view site history usage, and filter websites for free. Set online time limits, schedule device internet access and more for $4.99/month. (1st month free trial)

It isn’t as feature-rich as systems like Nest Wifi, and the smartphone controls you’ll need to configure it aren’t quite as intuitive — but other than that, the new, budget-friendly Netgear Orbi system stands out as a clear value option in the mesh category. At $150 for a two-device configuration that includes the Wi-Fi router and a single range Wi-Fi extender, it’s one of the most affordable mesh networks available, and it performed comparably to both Nest and Eero in our speed testing. For a limited time only, it is available for much less money — only $99.

In fact, when we tested the range of those three systems with smart devices in the CNET Smart Home, the Netgear Orbi came out on top with the fastest average top speed at close range — and when we tested the range of those three systems with smart devices in the CNET Smart Home, it came out on top with a faster router speed once more. I even appreciate the new design, which features smart curves on the top that allow heat to be vented in a fashionable manner.

4. Netgear Orbi 6 (triband, AX6000)

NETGEAR Orbi Whole Home Tri-band Mesh WiFi 6 System (RBK852) – Router with 1 Satellite Extender | Coverage up to 5,000 sq. ft., 100 Devices | AX6000 (Up to 6Gbps)

Features

  • Coverage up to 5,000 sq. ft. and for up to 100 devices. Extend coverage up to 2,500 sq. ft. with each additional satellite (sold separately)
  • Ultrafast AX6000 gigabit speed with WiFi 6 technology for uninterrupted streaming, HD video gaming, and web conferencing
  • Compatible with any internet service provider up to 2.5Gbps including cable, satellite, fiber and DSL
  • Connects to your existing cable modem, and replaces your WiFi router
  • Sets up in minutes with the Orbi App; easily manage WiFi settings, test internet speed, and monitor data usage

The Wi-Fi 6 version of the Netgear Orbi (which I refer to as the Netgear Orbi 6) is significantly more expensive than the dual-band version listed above, but it is also significantly more powerful. Starting at $700 for the two-piece setup shown here, the Netgear Orbi 6 is significantly more expensive than the dual-band version listed above, but it is also significantly more powerful. A second 5GHz band was allocated to backhauling system communications between the router and its satellites, allowing the system to function well in our performance testing — and at full Wi-Fi 6 speeds, to be sure.

To be more specific, the system returned average Wi-Fi speeds of 289Mbps after I spent a few days evaluating the speeds and signal quality in various rooms at my home, where I had a fiber internet plan from my Internet service provider with speeds of 300Mbps on average. An almost flawless outcome, and one which no other mesh system I’ve tested has been able to achieve to this level of perfection.

5. Asus ZenWiFi AX

ASUS ZenWiFi AX6600 Tri-Band Mesh WiFi 6 System (XT8 2PK) - Whole Home Coverage up to 5500 sq.ft & 6+ rooms, AiMesh, Included Lifetime Internet Security, Easy Setup, 3 SSID, Parental Control, White

Features

  • Banish WiFi Dead Zone—Tri-band mesh WiFi system with unique antenna placement delivers strong WiFi to every corner of your home providing total wireless speed of 6600Mbps
  • Next-Gen Wi-Fi 6 Technology— With OFDMA and MU-MIMO ZenWiFi AX enables more efficient stable and faster transmission even when multiple devices are transmitting data at the same time
  • Hassle Free Control – 3 steps setup and easy management with ASUS Router App
  • Always Up-to-date Protection— The lifetime free network security powered by Trend Micro makes sure your privacy on connected devices is protected
  • AiMesh Supported– Mix and match ZenWiFi with AiMesh-compatible routers to form powerful and flexible whole-home WiFi system

This mesh router from Asus isn’t quite as fast as the Netgear Orbi AX6000, but it’s quite close — and at $450 for a two-pack, the price tag is a lot less difficult to stomach. If you compare it to Netgear, you’re getting nearly everything you’d expect, including a multi-gigabit WAN connection and a dedicated backhaul band to keep transmissions between the router and the satellite distinct from the rest of your data network traffic.

Although $450 is a significant sum of money, this simple-to-use Asus router system proved to be quite powerful and dependable throughout our performance testing. That puts it squarely in the sweet spot for a future-proofed mesh router on Cnet that looks and feels like a high-end update without breaking the bank.

6. Asus RT-AX86U

ASUS AC2900 WiFi Gaming Router (RT-AC86U) - Dual Band Gigabit Wireless Internet Router, WTFast Game Accelerator, Streaming, AiMesh Compatible, Included Lifetime Internet Security, Adaptive QoS

Features

  • Dual-band (2. 4 + 5 GHz) AC2900 wireless router with the latest 802. 11AC MU-MIMO technology for data transfer speeds up to 2900 Mbps
  • 1. 8GHz 32bit dual-core processor optimizes network traffic and connectivity speeds from the USB 3. 1 Gen1 and 4x Gigabit LAN ports
  • Designed for lag-free online gaming and flawless 4K UHD streaming with Waist game Accelerator and adaptive Qu's
  • A protection powered by Trend Micro provides built-in 24/7 protection from external attacks and threats, neutralizing them before they reach your network or connected devices
  • Manage your network with the ASUS router app – setup your network, manage usage and parental controls, even get instant notifications about important network-based events. Connected devices must be 802. 11 ac-compatible for best results. Ac input: 110v240v(5060hz)

Die-hard gamers will appreciate the high performance and low latency that gaming routers provide, and it is not uncommon to see them retailing for $300 or even $400. The Asus RT-AX86U dual-band router isn’t cheap, however, coming in at around $250. However, it represents a good bargain when compared to similar-priced routers — and the performance it provides is simply outstanding.

The router’s ability to control latency is perhaps its most notable feature. As a matter of fact, it ranks first among any routers I’ve ever tested, gaming or otherwise, for having the lowest average latency throughout all of my testing, which is something that online gamers will certainly appreciate. Another thing you’ll like is the fact that An great combination of app-based controls and features, including a mobile boost mode, which allows you to prioritize game traffic to your phone at the touch of a button, are available.

The RT-AX86U does not have any gaming capabilities, but it does provide complete support for Wi-Fi 6, with fast, reliable speeds and a long range. If you want extra range, you may connect other Asus “AIMesh” devices to your home network, making your router the focal point of a mesh network.

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