Best Wifi Routers For Gaming – John R. Delaney John R. Delaney Contributing Editor My Experience. I’ve been working with computers for years, starting with a few years as a Chief Acquisitions Officer for IBM in New York before landing (whenever that was). still published as a PC magazine). I spent over 14 years in the workforce, most recently as the Director of Operations at PC Labs, before transitioning to a freelance editor role. Read it in its entirety
One of the fastest routers we’ve tested, the Asus ROG Rapture GT-AC5300 offers tons of gamer-friendly features, plenty of I/O ports, and a sleek management console that lets you optimize your network for lag-free gaming.
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$419.99 US View on Amazon (Opens in new window) $299.99 USA View on B&H Photo Video (Opens in new window) $328.99 US at Best Buy $449.99. USA Save $121.00 USA View (opens in new window) $449.99 new window)
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Avid gamers rely on speedy systems with flashy graphics cards to gain an edge when competing online, but all that speedy hardware means nothing if your router can’t provide the bandwidth to overcome network latency. Introducing the Asus ROG Rapture GT-AC5300 ($399.99), a premium tri-band router built for gamers. This gorgeous router looks its best and offers hardware and software acceleration and gaming prioritization, a full set of LAN ports, solid anti-malware and virus protection, and a powerful quad-core processor. It’s expensive and bulky, but its high performance and powerful features make it a must-have, whether you’re a serious online gamer or running a busy home network.
Router. The black copper-plated card features the famous black and red Asus Republic of Gamers (ROG) logo and is a great deal.
Removable adjustable antenna stand. (That’s double what you get with the Netgear Nighthawk Pro Gaming XR500.) It looks like a giant spider on its back.
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Six tiny LEDs on the front face indicate power status, 2.4GHz activity, 5GHz activity, WAN and LAN connectivity, and WPS activity. On the left side are the buttons for turning Wi-Fi on/off, turning the LED on and off, and starting WPS. On the back there are eight excellent gigabit LAN ports, two USB 3.0 ports, a WAN port, and power and reset buttons. Two LAN ports can be paired for link aggregation, providing 2Gbps speeds for NAS devices connected to a compatible router.
$198.00 View at Walmart (Opens in new window) Read our Netgear Nighthawk Pro Gaming XR500 review
$299.99 Check Stock on Amazon (Opens in a new window) Read our review of the Linksys WRT32X Wi-Fi Gaming Router
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$224.99 View at Best Buy (Opens in new window) Read our review of the Netgear Nighthawk X10 AD7200 (R9000) Smart WiFi Router
$399.99 View on Amazon (Opens in a new window) Read our review of the D-Link AC5300 Ultra Wi-Fi Router (DIR-895L/R)
$299.99 Check Stock on Amazon (Opens in a new window) Read our review of the TP-Link Talon AD7200 All-in-One Router
$309.00 Checkout at Amazon (opens in new window) Read our review of the Linksys WRT3200ACM MU-MIMO Gigabit Wi-Fi Router
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$389.99 Check Availability on Amazon (Opens in a new window) Read our review of the Zyxel Armor Z2 AC2600 MU-MIMO Dual Gigabit Wireless Router (NBG6817)
The ROG Rapture GT-AC5300 is a tri-band 4×4 802.11ac router powered by a 1.8GHz quad-core processor, 1GB of RAM, and 256MB of flash storage. It uses 1024QAM (Quadrature Amplitude Modulation) technology to achieve maximum speeds of up to 1000Mbps on the 2.4GHz band and up to 2167Mbps on each 5GHz band. In addition, it supports all the latest 802.11ac technologies, including simultaneous data streams and beamforming. The latter helps improve performance by sending data in a focused signal directly
What sets the ROG Rapture GT-AC5300 apart from other high-end routers is its gaming features. One of these features is a pair of LAN ports that automatically prioritize the network so that your gaming device or console uses the largest share of your bandwidth. Another is GameBoost, which analyzes your network and prioritizes game traffic on Sony PlayStation, Nintendo Wii and 3D game consoles, as well as Microsoft XBox One.
This router also offers built-in Gamer Private Network (GPN) support. With WTFast (opens in a new window), GPN provides a private and secure connection to game servers, low latency and optimized performance for over 1000 compatible games. And for users who use a VPN, which can slow down game performance, the VPN Fusion feature allows you to use a VPN connection along with your regular Internet connection to keep games running at high speeds.
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ROG Rapture GT-AC5300 also features Trend Micro’s In-Game Privacy Protection System (IPS), which analyzes your network and protects it from online threats such as malicious sites, virus-infected client devices, and denial-of-service attacks. , ransomware attacks and external hacking. It also blocks sites known for phishing attacks and spam, and provides robust parental controls that give you access to sites with adult content, sites that deal with streaming content and transferring large files (such as streaming downloads), and sites that which provide social networking services. . You can also limit the network access time for individual clients.
You configure and control all of these gamer-focused features via a web console and the excellent ROG Gaming Center mobile app. A panel screen will open with a long menu of general and advanced settings on the left. On the right is a network traffic graph that shows real-time bandwidth as well as download and upload activity, and an internet health chart that shows which bands are connected. You can also view a display of network ping activity and ping rejections.
In the general settings menu, you’ll find tabs for the aforementioned Game IPS, Game Boost, and GPN features, as well as a Game Radar feature that lets you see the global servers for certain games, their country location, and location. ping status. Also, in the game profile section, you can optimize package distribution for specific games to improve performance. And Traffic Analyzer lets you monitor network usage by client or application, along with Wi-Fi Radar, which lets you explore a site, view Wi-Fi statistics (such as signal interference and channel usage), and troubleshoot wireless issues
In the advanced settings menu, you will find a network map along with basic and professional wireless settings. The latter includes RADIUS settings and pro settings for configuring things like beacon intervals, enabling and disabling beam and MU-MIMO, and setting RTS thresholds. Here you can also set up your guest network, configure your LAN and WAN settings, configure your AiCloud settings (so you can connect to your data from anywhere), view system logs, and even configure your router to work with Alexa voice commands and IFTTT applets .
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Other advanced options include USB applications, IPv6 and firewall options, administrator options, and tools for analyzing and configuring bandwidth usage, as well as configuring Wake on LAN options.
The functionality of Alexa and IFTTT is especially worth noting. You can use Amazon Alexa voice commands to activate the router’s guest network, update the firmware, and suspend the Internet. You can also use IFTTT applets to make the router respond to other IFTTT-enabled devices, such as door locks and cameras, and to specific events that trigger the router’s behavior. For example, you can turn off Wi-Fi on your router when the sun goes down or when you go to bed, and turn on Wi-Fi when you get home. You can also tell IFTTT to send an email when your child logs in.
In the address bar of my desktop browser, which launched the setup wizard. I selected Wireless Router Mode from the menu, which also includes Repeater Mode, Access Point Mode, Media Bridge Mode, and AiMesh Mode. (The latter option allows you to use other Asus routers as nodes to create a seamless mesh network.) You can choose a router to choose the best range or split the three ranges; I did the latter for testing. I selected DHCP to connect to the Internet, created a username and password, and updated the firmware. The whole process took less than five minutes.
The ROG Rapture GT-AC5300 performed very well in our transfer speed tests. In our 2.4 GHz SU-MIMO tests, the 128 Mbps result was about 30 Mbps faster than the D-Link AC5300 Ultra DIR895L/R and the Netgear Nighthawk X10 R9000, though it beat the Linksys WRT32X’s take of up to 2 seconds . At 30 feet, it hit 75 Mbps, besting only the D-Link and Netgear models. Once again, the Linksys WRT32X led the pack.
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The ROG Rapture GT-AC5300’s 601 Mbps in the 5 GHz proximity test was the highest we’ve seen to date.
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