Buying a good Wi-Fi router isn’t as simple as heading to the store and picking up the cheapest one. While a basic router might get the job done, today’s high-speed internet can be better handled by one of the best Wi-Fi routers out there. In reality, picking the right router can be a daunting task; there are so many details that distinguish routers from each other, and when the quality of your Netflix stream is at stake, the purchase deserves proper research.
In this feature we take a closer look at some of the best WiFi routers available, giving you a great place to start on your quest for the best router for your needs. Now, if all you need is more coverage, you might also want to look at our list of the best Wi-Fi extenders.
Also read: The best Wi-Fi extenders
The best Wi-Fi routers:
Editor’s note: We will regularly update this list of the best Wi-Fi routers as new devices launch.
1. Linksys Max-Stream AC4000 Wi-Fi router (EA9300)
The best Wi-Fi routers can perform, but they can get very expensive. Those looking to spend less while also getting a feature-full wireless experience will love the Linksys AC4000 Max-Stream. It’s no lackluster either. The device features six antennas and nine high-power amplifiers, ensuring a powerful connection for large homes.
It has a tri-band set-up for better device organization and optimization, with total speeds adding up to 4Gbps. The setup is simple and this router even works with Alexa, so you can control your internet options using your voice. This is definitely one of the best Wi-Fi routers for the price!
2. Asus RT-AX89X AX6000
Asus’ ROG Rapture routers have gained a reputation for high quality and extreme gaming connectivity. The company takes things up a notch with the RT-AX89X, which brings Wi-Fi 6 and a plethora of other capabilities. Coverage and range should be improved. And while Asus isn’t giving us specific numbers, they claim this router can cover “very large homes”. But even if it can’t reach all corners in your house, the unit supports AiMesh, which means you can buy extenders to turn this into a mesh Wi-Fi system.
Check this out: The best VPN routers you can buy
As for performance? This is a gaming router, so you know you are getting some powerful specs. It has a quad-core 2.2GHz processor and 1GB of RAM, which can help you boost Wi-Fi performance. It can run your VPN, features dual-band connectivity, and supports speeds of up to 6,000Mbps. This is one hell of a router, but you will have to pay a pretty penny for it.
3. Netgear Nighthawk AX12 (RAX200) Wi-Fi router
Netgear’s Nighthawk series is known for offering some of the best Wi-Fi routers in the market, and the AX 12 doesn’t disappoint one bit. This one is for those who want to take their Wi-Fi performance to the next level. Wi-Fi 6 can handle up to 11Gbps speeds, and you can connect over 40 devices to it. To learn more about Wi-Fi 6 improvements, you can read the article linked below.
Not enough with a single Gigabit internet connection? This router can handle two with support for WAN port aggregation. You can also share storage using the couple of USB ports. Not to mention that spaceship design will surely spark some conversations.
4. Amazon Eero 6
Some of the most outstanding items in this list of the best Wi-Fi routers feature the newer Wi-Fi 6 standard, but they tend to be pretty expensive. Not only that, but if you want to get Wi-Fi 6 with mesh capabilities chances are you will have to pay a pretty penny. The Eero 6 mesh system is relatively accessible and offers quite a bit of functionality.
Read next: The best gaming routers
The Eero 6 system can cover up to 5,000sqft and connect with over 75 devices simultaneously. Eero also offers great smart features, such as Alexa voice commands, a super simple app with plenty of control, and it even comes with an integrated Zigbee hub.
5. TP-Link AX6000 Wi-Fi router
The TP-Link AX6000 costs only a tiny bit more than the other TP-Link router listed above, but provides amazing performance and a much more discrete design. This unit supports Wi-Fi 6, with gigabit support even through its slowest 2.4GHz channel. OFDMA and BSS color technology make the connection more reliable, eliminating interference. If you care for security, the TP-Link AX6000 also comes with a lifetime subscription to TP-Link HomeCare, which the router comes integrated with.
6. Google Nest Wi-Fi
Google’s Nest Wi-Fi is best for those who want more coverage in larger spaces or complex buildings. This isn’t only one of the best Wi-Fi routers, it’s also among the best mesh routers around. Mesh networks operate with the use of multiple routers or nodes. These transmit information wirelessly, extending your Wi-Fi reach.
More routers: The best Wi-Fi mesh routers
The Nest Wi-Fi may not have Wi-Fi 6 support and only has two physical Ethernet jacks, but everything else about the Nest Wi-Fi is great. The setup is as simple as they get, and it’s done with an app. The design is elegant and simple. To make the deal even sweeter, the secondary points double as Google Assistant speakers!
7. Netgear Orbi Wi-Fi 6 System
Now, if you want a mesh router system with serious performance, the Netgear Orbi system is definitely one of the best Wi-Fi routers. While you are paying a lot of money for the router and a single satellite extender, the Netgear Orbi Wi-Fi 6 can cover up to 5,000sqft with Wi-Fi speeds of up to 6Gbps. It can also keep over 60 devices connected simultaneously.
8. Netgear Orbi 4G LTE Wi-Fi Router
This one is not as powerful as the Orbi Wi-Fi 6 system, but it has a very good trick up its sleeve. This router can use cellular networks as its source of internet. It has a SIM card slot with 3G and 4G LTE compatibility. You can connect your traditional modem to it too, leaving the cellular network as a backup.
While it has no Wi-Fi 6 capabilities, the unit can definitely handle its own. It has a couple of 5GHz channels with supported speeds of up to 866Mbps. The single 2.4GHz channel is limited to 400Mbps. If the 2,000 square feet range isn’t enough for you, this system can also be linked with other satellite units to create a mesh router system. This is a very complete solution to your wireless needs, making the Orbi LBR20 one of the best Wi-Fi routers around.
9. Amplifi Alien
The Amplifi Alien looks, costs, and performs like a high-end router. It comes with all the bells and whistles, including Wi-Fi 6, tri-band radios, gigabit mesh performance, and up to 7685Mbps speeds. You can use a single unit, but it’s also possible to add extenders for a mesh network that can cover over 6,000sqft if needed.
It also comes with a touchscreen that can be used to control your network, run speed tests, and more. The app is great, and you can even get VPN support. The company also claims set-up takes about a minute. All these features and specs will cost a pretty penny, though.
10. Netgear Nighthawk 5G Mobile Hotspot Pro
Some of you need more mobility, so adding a mobile hotspot to this list of the best Wi-Fi routers was crucial. Our favorite is the Netgear Nighthawk 5G Mobile Hotspot Pro. You’ll have to pay a pretty penny for it, but you can’t really get much better than this device when it comes to mobile hotspots. For starters, it supports Wi-Fi 6 and can handle up to 32 devices at once. It also comes with support for 5G. Impressive, right?
If you want an equally awesome mobile hotspot for a much lower price, consider the Nighthawk M1. It’s still a very powerful option but lacks Wi-Fi 6 and 5G support. It’s also limited to 20 device connections.