Billed as the next generation of wireless routers, the RT-AC66R is one of the most advanced routers offered for consumer use. A fifth-generation dual-band Wi-Fi router, the RT-AC66R offers a unified app that turns it into a personal cloud server. Easy to connect to a variety of devices including smartphones and desktop systems, it allows data to be accessed and managed from virtually anywhere.
Not everyone needs a router that can do everything, and most people wouldn’t want to try setting one up anyway. That’s where the Belkin AC1750 comes in. A basic dual-band router, the Belkin comes with enough extras, combined with ease of setup, to justify the price—but just barely.
The Buffalo AirStation Extreme AC1750 is a gigabit dual band router that comes with DD-WRT. It features high speed Wi-Fi connectivity on the 5GHz band. Rather than using Buffalo’s default firmware, the AirStation Extreme uses a popular open source platform from DD-WRT. In fact, it is the first 802.11ac router with DD-WRT firmware. While this may not be of particular use to home users, network enthusiasts and advanced users will find it more appealing to use an interface that they’re already familiar with.
The D-Link AC Smartbeam 1750 uses the 802.11AC wireless networking standard which offer significant benefits to the users, the most obvious of which is an increase in the potential top connection speed. WiFi devices that use one of the older standards can work properly with the 1750 Smartbeam, because the router is fully backwards compatible. That means that whether it is a smartphone, tablet, laptop, or desktop, the device should be able to connect to the router without any problems.
The Netgear R6400 is Netgear's replacement for the R6300, which was one of the first routers to support IEEE 802.11ac. The R6400 is good for crowded Wi-Fi networks, and has a theoretical max speed of 1750Mbps. If you want an incredibly fast Wi-Fi network without breaking the bank, the Netgear R6400 is a strong choice.
The TP-LINK Archer C7is an affordable and reliable 802.11 AC router that provides excellent coverage, durable external antennas and solid speed. This router is dual band, wireless and pretty much bare bones. It doesn't have the extra special high tech bells and whistles of other routers on the market yet it is quite cheap. It retails for around $100. The unit has the wireless standard for “next generation” routers, 802.11AC. In terms of technical data, the TP-LINK Archer C7 can provide support up to 450 Mbps on the 2.4GHz band.
The TP-Link Archer C8 is quite the speedy dual band router, capable of providing crystal clear video and audio along with a smooth web surfing experience. Any online task that requires heavy bandwidth can be performed without a problem on the Archer C8. Data transfer speeds can reach up to 1.3 Gbps on the 5GHz band and 450 Mbps on 2.4GHz channel.
The majority of home and small business owners probably do not consider replacing the router supplied by an Internet service provider. However, by not investing in an upgrade, you deny yourself the many extended features and enhanced performance that a consumer grade router provides. The TP-Link Archer D7 is an affordable, sophisticated little device