Gaming is a popular past time hobby with numerous enthusiasts all over the world. Some gamers enjoy building their own personal computers with their choice of components gathered overtime. Not only are they budget centric, but they also aim to get the best hardware on the market that maximizes utility and reduces costs.
When it comes to internet, there’s no space for compromise. You need the highest speeds with the best connection that will give you the smooth experience that you need for your gaming. Any gamer would understand the fair annoyance behind a disconnected internet that results in you losing your game and wasting your time.
An essential part in this entire process is a good router that’s specifically designed to cater to the needs of gaming enthusiasts. Some provide you with high speed while others promise a stable connection with incredible range.
This is why we compiled a list of the best 5 gaming routers of 2020, highlighting their salient features along with shortcomings. The following routers are topnotch state-of-the-art pieces of hardware that serve their purpose as efficiently as possible.
Top 5 Best Router for Gaming 2020
1. NETGEAR Nighthawk Pro Gaming (XR500) – Buy From Amazon
The first router on the list is by Netgear that has gone above and beyond when it comes to listening to their customers and coming up with the next best innovative hardware. This time they chose to make gamers happy. The Nighthawk assures that it provides the best speed for your gaming experience and streaming. With the lag gone, you can finally enjoy stable connectivity.
When it comes to design, the router comes in a black sleek body with external antennas that give it the perfect combination of class and style. The router is dual-band supporting both 2.4GHz and 5GHz. This allows a sum total of 2500Mbps that give you the edge you need over other gamers in a lag free battle.
The back of the router consists of four Gigabit LAN ports and one for the main connection. On the side, it holds two 3.0 USB ports. The 802.11ac router also utilizes MIMO for simultaneously streaming. This added with the strong dual core processor, it can support multiple devices, whether PC or Consoles, high quality streaming and internet surfing.
The four external antennas provide great coverage all over your house. Other features include QoS, gaming VPN and dashboard. The quality of service tab allows you to allocate bandwidths and usage, and to prioritize devices in order to reduce lags etc. The VPN helps add extra security to your network and information.
The gaming dashboard gives you an overview of pings, and usage of bandwidth by different connected devices. These features run on the Duma OS software, a more flexible and upgraded version of its predecessors.
Another topnotch feature is the Geo-filter which makes sure that you always get connected to servers that are nearer to your location, hence automatically blocking out bad servers with high pings. For parental control as well, you can see where most usage of bandwidth is going and what social media sites are being used by a device.
The XR500 is an overall excellent router with high speeds and good performance, specifically designed for gamers to tweak it according to their preferences.
- Numerous features for gamers
- Excellent range
- Good speed
- No app.
- No 2.0 USB port
2. Asus AC3100 (RT-AC88U) – Buy From Amazon
Asus is a company that’s shown time and time again what its capable of, with each no hardware on the market showcasing their innovation and ability to satisfy their customers by going above and beyond the call of duty. The RT-AC88U is a powerful router that has everything if you have the cash for it. If a router is expensive, you can bet that it has the features to justify the price tag, just like the AC3100 RT-AC88U.
The router itself looks like something out of a typical game, with the cliched red-black theme and well-placed LED lights. The dual band router has both bands of frequency; 2.4GHz and 5GHz, but the fact that makes it stand out is a Broadcom chip which essentially offers higher bandwidth than most regular AC routers, boosting the average 1900Mbps to a staggering 2160Mbps if connected with the right adapters.
Although it requires additional components, it’s a good feature that gives the router the over the top edge. It also supports MU-MIMO which is basically multi-user multiple input multiple output, that allows the router to handle bandwidth better and therefore keep each device connected with equal distribution. This makes sure that no one device is slowed down by the other.
Another stellar feature are the 8 LAN ports, that may seem too much for casual users. For more advanced users, you can also change one of the ports to WAN incase you have more than one source. If these features weren’t enough, there’s an over the top software that has made customization all the better and easier for gamers.
It offers a free membership to Gamers Private Network, which serves to direct gaming traffic away from busier networks, and hence resulting in lowered pings and no packet loss. You can upgrade your membership and have the feature available in more devices. It also comes with an application that summarizes performance and depicts a bunch of graph to showcase usage. It’s the perfect router for gamers who have the cash to go higher than average and all out for good speed, great performance or simply to have a cool looking router that fulfills all your needs.
- 8 LAN ports
- Easy to use interface
3. Linksys AC3200 (WRT32X-RM2) – Buy From Amazon
Every gaming router aims to decrease your lag spikes and ensure stable pings through and through. The AC3200 does the same with dual band capability and helping gamers prioritize their needs. The router itself is compact and black, with four detachable antennas to help increase range.
It’s also equipped with four LAN ports, one WAN port, and two USB ports 2.0 and 3.0 each. The main purpose Linksys had in mind for this router was gaming prioritization which is why it comes with the Killer Prioritization Engine that accelerates gaming traffic above everything else.
This syncs well with Killer enabled PCs and also helps with high data processing. The Killer Control Centre allows you to update your settings and setting bandwidth limits. This lets the user experience gaming as the top priority and making sure no bandwidth is being wasted. According to the company, this reduces the ping by up to 77%, which is an added utility for all enthusiasts who dislike lag spiked gaming.
When it comes to speed, it gives 600Mbps on the 2.4GHz band and 2600Mbps on the 5GHz band, which results in an added total of 3200Mbps. It also comes with 512MB RAM, 256MB flash memory, and also beamforming. Beamforming is an uprising technology that focuses signals on devices rather than all over the house. Although it’s a bit on the expensive side, it goes well for people with Killer devices and compatibility.
- Stable ping
- Average setup interface
4. ASUS AC5300 (RT-AC5300) – Buy From Amazon
Asus has a long-standing history of releasing over the top routers that may come off as advanced for average users. The RT-AC5300 is another over kill triband router that has a long list of features along with a hefty price tag to follow it up.
It has three bands, 2.4GHz and two 5GHz. The former has a speed of up to 1000Mbps, and 2167Mbps on the latter frequency each. This gives the router an amazing speed of up to 5300Mbps at any moment. It also provides amazing range to compliment the theoretical speed. It also has 8 external adjustable and detachable antennas that improve coverage, making the router ideal for bigger houses or offices.
It also comes equipped with two USB ports, 2.0 and 3.0. But there’s a reason this router is on the list for the top gaming routers; a detailed list of settings built specifically for gamers. It comes with preconfigured settings where you can select a game of your choice to transfer bandwidth towards and prioritize it. It also syncs well with GPN, automatically connecting you to the best server for the game you’re playing. Using GPN, this ensures that no matter what game you connect with, bad pinged servers will automatically be blacklisted and excluded from the search.
Although the web interface is fairly advanced, common users may find it complicated with all the additional gaming features. Similar titles are renamed with gaming lingo making it hard for non-enthusiasts to understand. It also comes with an app which is easier to use and navigate through as compared to the web interface. The router is perfect for people who want something gaming specific but might not sit well with average users.
- Fast performance
- 8 LAN ports
- Not for average users
5. NETGEAR Nighthawk X10 (R9000) – Buy From Amazon
The last router on our list is definitely not the least. The X10 is an expensive high-end router that has very specific features that aren’t for everyone. It supports 802.11ad but also requires compatibility with an enabled device and super good connection. This speed is short distanced and needs additional support but if you’re a willing customer who wants speed above all, then go for it.
Digging into more details about exactly how fast it can go, it can deliver up to 4600Mbps on 60GHz, 1700Mbps on 5GHz and 800Mbps on the 2.4GHz. If your device isn’t 802.11ad compatible then it will serve as a normal AC router.
These speeds may seem very fast theoretically but users need to keep in mind the additional costs require to avail it completely. Other than that, it has a very detailed interface but often sluggish when switching from section to another. It also has a built-in Plex server which allows you to stream content stored on external hard drives to Plex clients. Along with the several Gigabit ports, it’s also equipped with two USB 3.0 ports.
Another salient feature that may appeal to parents is the control system, that allows you to customize precise levels of control. You can blacklist sites and domains and also control the level of restriction on any content. It also supports QoS, which allows you to prioritize bandwidth on the basis of devices or applications.
At the end of the day, it depends more on what you need and how badly. As an expensive router, and if you have the right devices, you could take advantage of the fast speeds. But as an average home user, it may not be as compelling.
- Supports 802.11ad
- High speed and performance
- Slow web interface
There’s the list of the top 5 best gaming router of 2020, with each router bringing something different to the table. All routers share the same love for gaming, only differing in speed, performance and customization. Companies ensure that every customer’s needs are being satisfied in the best way possible and to make sure that gaming enthusiasts are sated as well, these routers come with preconfigured characteristics and settings to help you win that battle.
No more lag, no more ping spikes, no more bad servers; just good speed and performance that will ensure that you get what you would generally expect from a top-class gaming router. Every gamer wants to make sure they don’t disconnect or face Wi-Fi problems, so companies like Asus and Netgear bring you the best of the best to cater to those gaming needs and help you achieve an epitome of a carefree gaming experience.