NetGear Router Comparison Chart:
The NetGear Routers are very popular routers among home users. They have been around since 2006 and they were originally designed with business users in mind. Their main selling point is their ease of use, which makes them ideal for those who don’t want to spend too much time configuring complicated network setups.
They come in several models and each model comes with its own features. Each model is different from other models because it was specifically built for a specific purpose. The most notable feature of any particular model is how fast it’s networking speed is compared to others.
In this guide, we will compare the top five NETGEAR routers:
NETGEAR Orbi R7000 – The Most Popular NETGEAR Router Model (Read our full review)
NETGEAR Nighthawk X10 AC1900 Dual Band Gigabit Wireless-N Router – The Fastest NETGEAR Router (Read our full review)
Dell PowerEdge R730 Workstation Server Edition Network Appliance – The Largest NETGEAR Router (Read our full review)
NETGEAR N900 WiFi Dual Band Gigabit Router – The Best Value for Your Money NETGEAR Router (Read our full review)
NETGEAR AC1750 WiFi Router – Best if You Need a Reliable but Low-Powered Router (Read our full review)
Best NETGEAR Routers
1. NETGEAR Orbi R7000
The Most Popular NETGEAR Router Model
The Orbi series is the latest Wi-Fi system from NETGEAR, which promises to bring your home a much better experience with your Wi-Fi.
This system consists of a main router device and a satellite. It’s a tri-band system, meaning each device has its own bandwidth to work with. This means that even if every single device in your home is using the internet, they won’t slow down each other, and will be able to carry much more data at once.
The main router itself is equipped with a 1GHz processor and two dedicated child networks. The first child network is for the actual router system. This is where all of the connections are made and settings are adjusted.
The second child network is for the satellite. This allows it to operate without disturbing the main functions of the router, which reside on a separate network to prevent slowdowns. The dedicated network also prevents the other devices in your home from using its bandwidth and slowing anything down.
The router is also equipped with four internal antennas, which help to broadcast a more widespread and accurate Wi-Fi signal all throughout your home. It has a beamforming technology, which increases the strength and speed of the Wi-Fi to a specific device without weakening any other areas.
The router is also very aesthetically pleasing. It’s very thin and only has one flat side, so it can be placed anywhere. The front of it consists of an LED screen that displays information about your network.
It is controlled through a mobile app, which allows for you to easily set up a secure Wi-Fi network in minutes. You can easily control parental settings, device prioritization, and more right from your phone.
Pros Very easy to set up
Very fast connection
Long range and wide area of coverage
Ability to add on with more Orbi units
Aesthetic design blends in well with home decor Cons Fairly expensive
2. NETGEAR Nighthawk X10 AC1900
The Fastest NETGEAR Router
This is the top-of-the-line router from NETGEAR, and it certainly delivers in all aspects. This tri-band AC router has a maximum speed of 2.4GHz at 800 Mbps and both 5GHz bands at 1,300 Mbps, providing a whopping 2,400 Mbps of total available bandwidth.
The design of this router is quite interesting too, with the center being thicker than the edges, giving it an angled look. It also has very wide and flat antennas that make it stick out from the rest of the unit. These antennas are detachable, should you wish to close up the unit and have a more streamlined appearance.
The Nighthawk is equipped with some very powerful hardware as well, with a 1GHz dual-core processor and 256 MB of DDR3 RAM. This allows it to handle all of your internet activity without breaking a sweat.
The tri-band Wi-Fi really makes this router shine, as it provides a ton of bandwidth for all of your devices to share. There is even a built-in USB 3.0 port that lets you connect external storage so you can also use it for backups or media servers.
Pros Three Wi-Fi bands for maximum bandwidth
Very powerful processor and RAM
USB 3.0 port for external storage Cons Very expensive
Bulky design with large antennas
3. Asus AC2900 – Best Gaming Router
Faster Speed for the Price
This is another high-end router that will satisfy anyone who is looking for good speeds and a lot of features. The standout feature of this router is its eight external active antennas. These aren’t just there for looks either as they help to provide the strongest Wi-Fi signal throughout your home.
The PCE-AC88 uses a Broadcom chipset and has a dual core processor clocked at 1.8GHz, to provide as fast of speeds as possible for your games and other internet needs.
It also has eight adjustable external antennas which can be turned and positioned in order to get the best signal quality.
This router also appeals to those who want more control over their network. The Asus Router App allows you to easily monitor your network, set parental controls, and even create individual user profiles with their own bandwidth limits.
Pros Great Wi-Fi signal strength
Fast speeds for an affordable price
Flexible software for more advanced users Cons Only has four Gigabit Ethernet ports
4. Linksys WRT32X – Best DD-WRT Router
Best Open Source Firmware
This router is slightly more expensive than other options, but it provides a much higher performance. It’s good for anything that requires a strong signal such as gaming or streaming 4K. The WRT32X features a 1.8GHz dual-core processor and has a total of six external high-power antennas. This allows for a long Wi-Fi range and fast speeds.
Since the WRT32X runs on open-source firmware, it has a lot of benefits. One of them being that you can easily run it with a VPN. It also allows for easy customization, so you can truly personalize your router.
The WRT32X has quite a few ports for all of your devices. It has four Gigabit Ethernet ports and one WAN port to connect to your internet. It also has a USB 3.0 port in case you want to connect a hard drive for network storage.
It also has quite a few features that help to boost the strength of your signal. It includes a powerful beamforming technology and has a DFS (radar) functionality. This allows your network to have a much stronger Wi-Fi range without interfering with any other networks.
Pros Runs on Open-source firmware for advanced features
Long Wi-Fi range with powerful antennas
High-power 1.8GHz dual-core processor Cons Only has four Gigabit Ethernet ports
5. Google WiFi – Best Mesh Router System
Best for Those With Multiple Rooms
If you are looking for a more modern approach to home Wi-Fi coverage, the Google WiFi system is the best option. It uses multiple devices that work together to provide seamless Wi-Fi in your home.
The set-up is made out of three devices; you simply place these throughout your house and they will create a strong mesh network. So if you have a larger home, this is a great solution. It can even create a network outside of your home.
The best part about this system is that it requires no wires at all in order to set it up. The Google WiFi app will walk you through the entire set-up process and is incredibly easy to use.
The biggest con of this mesh system is that it is much more expensive than other options. But, if you are looking for a seamless Wi-Fi system with reliable coverage throughout your home, this is a good solution.
It’s also great for people with a large home because you can easily add more WiFi points to the system if you need to.
If you are looking for something simple, the Google WiFi system might be a little too much for you. It does require that you set it up using a mobile device and if your home isn’t already wired for Ethernet, then you’ll need to do a bit of wiring.
Sources & references used in this article:
IT@ home: Often best left to professionals by AJ Brush – Position paper for the CHI 2006 Workshop on IT …, 2006 – Citeseer
An empirical study of the design space of smart home routers by T Zahid, FY Dar, X Hei, W Cheng – International Conference on Smart …, 2016 – Springer
Orbi Router Login: How to Troubleshoot by RL List – 2020 – routerloginlist.com