10 Best Gaming Modem and Routers for 2018

When it comes to gaming, having a strong, stable internet connection is one of the most important things.

Usually, it’s quite easy to get a consistent ping in games when you’re the only one using the internet, but when more people start to access the WiFi, that’s when things start to get congested.

Typically,

A standard router can only do so much to provide a strong internet connection to multiple devices at once. This is where gaming routers come into play.

With a gaming modem, it’s easier to provide a strong consistent connection for all devices at once and provide priority to the devices that need it most.

After in-depth research, We’ve made a list of 10 Best Router for Gaming. 

Best Gaming Router 2018 (Comparison Table)

RouterSpeedPortsCPUPrice
NETGEAR R6700Up to 1750mbps5GHz
NETGEAR S8000
Up to 1,000mbps
ASUS AC5300 WiFi Tri-Band
Up to 5,334mbps4 Ethernet, 1 WAN, 1 USB 2.0, 1 USB 3.01.4GHz
NETGEAR X4S
Up to 2,600mbps
Linksys Max-Stream AC2200
Up to 2,200mbps
ASUS AC1750 Dual Band
Up to 1750mbps
NETGEAR Pro Gaming
Up to 20gb
TP-Link Archer AC1200
Up to 1,750mbps
ASUS AC5300 WiFi Tri-Band
Up to 3,200mbps
ASRock G10 AC2600
Up to 2,600mbps

NETGEAR R6700 Nighthawk: Best Modem for Gaming

About The Router

The NETGEAR R6700 Nighthawk is very reasonably priced, but despite that, it offers an incredible step up from the default router that’s probably sitting in your home right now.

Firstly, The R6700 Nighthawk is Tri-Band, which essentially means you will have more room on the network for multiple devices at once. This router has 4 ethernet ports as well, so if you’re after the most stable connection, you can pick up to four devices at once, alongside your wireless connections.

The connectivity range on the R6700 is very decent as well. Expect to get far closer to your advertised network speeds with this router. With NETGEAR’s smart connect mode, you’ll essentially have two 5GHz channels that your devices will switch between automatically.

NETGEAR’s R6700 Nighthawk also comes with a security system and a handy app that makes it easier to manage everything. With this router, you are able to set up a system that requires all devices to enter a password before being given access to the network – this is on top of the standard wireless network key.

Top Speed

You can get up to 800Mbps with this router. The total network bandwidth for this router across all devices is 1,750mbps. Keep in mind that you will only ever reach your ISP’s advertised speeds.

Wireless Technology Used

The NETGEAR R6700 Nighthawk uses Tri-Band technology. There are two 5GHz channels and one 2.4GHz channel. 

Pros

  • Very cheap and cheerful
  • Additional security and management features

Cons

  • App could do with more features
  • Only 4 ethernet ports

NETGEAR Nighthawk S8000 8 Port: Most Affordable Gaming Router

About The Router

If you want a step up to something slightly sleeker in design and more suitable for a fully wired home setup, you may prefer to go for the NETGEAR Nighthawk S8000. Once again, this thing is reasonably priced, so you certainly aren’t going to feel much of a tug on your wallet for this one.

This device is more of an Ethernet switch – this means that it essentially expands upon your router’s existing ethernet capabilities and provides a variety of other tools. The Nighthawk S8000 has a total of 8 ethernet ports.

If you have a lot of PCs or devices that require a wired connection, using this setup may be the best option. After all, a wired connection is always going to beat wireless. You also get a number of tools to manage which devices get the most priority.

Top Speed

Up to 1,000mbps via a wired connection. Your actual speeds will depend on what your ISP offers.

Wireless Technology Used

No wireless – uses wired connections.

Pros

  • Great way to set up a Wired network at home for cheap
  • Control which devices get priority

Cons

  •  No wireless connectivity

ASUS AC5300 WiFi Tri-Band: Best Router for Gaming

About The Router

The ASUS AC5300 Wifi Tri-Band router is a huge step from the Nighthawk routers shown above, both in price and performance. If you really want the absolute best, sometimes it is worth paying for it.

The ASUS AC5300 has a Tri-Band setup with two 5GHz channels and a single 2.4GHz channel. Smart connect is used to assure that devices are automatically assigned to each channel to give everybody a smooth, consistent connection.

An included app makes it easy to monitor which devices are using data, how your network is performing overall, and to adjust performance across different devices. The ASUS AC5300 also optimizes the way packets are sent to and from the internet to improve ping massively whilst playing games.

The design of this thing is sure to catch some attention too, but there’s a good reason for it. ASUS’ 4T4R antenna design makes it so not only do your wireless devices have a consistent connection at all times, but the range for that connection is greatly improved. If you want to run a wired connection to some devices, you’ll be happy to find that this device has four ethernet ports.

Top Speed

Up to 5,334mbps across all channels. Up to 1,300mbps on a single device. Your own internet speed per device will depend on your ISP speeds.

Wireless Technology Used

The ASUS AC5300 uses Tri-Band WiFi with two 5GHz channels and a single 2.4GHz channel.

Pros

  • Huge bandwidth capability
  • App for managing performance and network quality
  • Data packets are optimized for better ping

Cons

  • More expensive than most models
  • Sticks out like a sore thumb

NETGEAR Nighthawk X4S: Best Gaming Router for PS4

About The Router

The Nighthawk X4S is essentially NETGEAR’s answer to the competition at the top end. This device is not as expensive as the high-end routers out there with video game branding, but it still provides incredible performance.

The NETGEAR Nighthawk X4S uses 4×4 WiFi architecture to ensure that connection is as smooth and stable at further distances.

The included app makes it easy to stop and start the internet connection for different devices at the tap of a button – you can also run speed tests and add additional security measures. Steps have been put in place to make sure that the right kinds of data gets priority, with video games being at the top.

The Nighthawk X4S also comes equipped with 4 ethernet ports. This device is a Dual Band router, which is one downside in comparison to other high-end devices.

Top Speed:

The top speed available on the Nighthawk X4S is 800mbps. The device can support up to 2,600Mbps on a single network.

Wireless Technology Used:

The Nighthawk X4S has Dual Band WiFi. This includes one 5GHz channel and one 2.4GHz channel.

Pros

  • Great technology to ensure fast speeds across all devices
  • Regularly updated app for quick remote access and management

Cons

  • Slightly less bandwidth than other high end routers
  • Only Dual Band technology

Linksys Max-Stream AC2200: Best Gaming Modem

best router for gaming

About The Router

The Linksys Max-Stream AC2200 was built to provide less latency for the internet-of-things lovers out there. As a result, this router can manage dozens of devices on a single connection and it runs all connected wireless devices through its Tri-Band setup for optimal performance.

The four external antennas help to extend the WiFi range for all three WiFi channels on the Linksys Max-Stream and there are also 4 ethernet ports for those that would prefer wired connections to some devices in their home.

Like most similar routers, smart connect technology is used on the Linksys Max-Stream to assign devices automatically to the best suited channels.

The Linksys app is also great for managing your network – you can add parental controls, prioritize certain devices, and keep the firmware up to date at all times.

It should be noted that the Linksys Max-Stream AC2200 isn’t marketed as a gaming router, so this means you lose out on some prioritization for gaming related features. On the flip side, you’ll find it hard to pick up a Tri-Band router like this that does have one of the gaming brand manufacturer names slapped on it.

Top Speed

The Linksys Max-Stream AC2200 can give up to 800mbps per device and up to 2,200mbps across the whole network.

Wireless Technology Used

 The Linksys Max-Stream AC2200 uses Tri-Band WiFi. This includes two 5GHz channels and one 2.4GHz channel.

Pros

  • Cheaper than similar Tri-Band routers
  • Great app for easy control and device prioritization 

Cons

  • No packet optimization for gaming or other gaming features

ASUS 3 x 3 AC1750 Wireless Dual Band: Best Wireless Router for Gaming

About The Router

If you regularly have less than 10 devices connected to your network at once, you may not need one of the overkill Tri-Band routers shown above. The ASUS 3 x 3 AC1750 works well as a cheaper alternative.

Whilst this router is only Dual Band, the signal strength and range will still be far greater than your standard router. You’ll also find that network performance is still incredible, with support of up to 1,750mbps across the entire network.

A router app is included to make managing the network as stress-free as possible. ASUS also provides extra protection to stop unwanted malware or malicious addresses connecting to your network.

Top Speed

The ASUS 3 x 3 AC1750 can reach up to 800mbps per device and up to 1,750mbps throughout the entire network.

Wireless Technology Used

The ASUS 3 x 3 AC1750 uses Dual Band WiFi. This includes one 5GHz channel and one 2.4GHz channel.

Pros

  • A nice mid-range price point
  • Far better bandwidth than your standard router
  • Included app for easier management

Cons

  • No Tri-Band technology means slightly less bandwidth potential

NETGEAR Nighthawk Pro Gaming(L2): Best Router for Faster Connection

About The Router

The NETGEAR Nighthawk Pro Gaming (L2) is another ethernet switch that’s been designed to make it easy to create a fully wired setup.

Aimed at gamers that want the absolute best in-game performance, this router has 10 ethernet ports and the ability to aggregate speeds between two 10gbps connection to achieve up to 20gbps.

If you care about visual design, the Nighthawk Pro Gaming (L2) ethernet switch also stands out amongst the rest – it is sleek yet aptly noticeable. An included app allows owners to edit the RGB colors on the fly and control latency to eliminate lag spikes.

Top Speed

Two ports have 10gbps speeds, whilst the remaining eight ports reach up to 1gbps. You can reach up to 20gbps on a single device with the Nighthawk Pro Gaming (L2) by aggregating the two 10gps cables.

Wireless Technology Used

The Nighthawk Pro Gaming (L2) uses wired connections and does not have any WiFi connectivity. You must connect it via your router, which means your WiFi performance will be no different to usual.

Pros

  • Insane speeds available if your network can handle it
  • Easy setup and control
  • Sleek design

Cons

  • No WiFi capability
  • Expensive

TP-Link Archer AC1200 Best Gaming Router Under 100$

About The Router

If you really don’t want to fork out hundreds of dollars to get better network performance, you may appreciate the TP-Link Archer AC1200. This router is very cheap in comparison to others on this list, but the performance and capabilities are still very good.

As you’d expect at this price point, the TP-Link Archer AC1200 only has Dual Band technology. This will still provide you with enough bandwidth for up to 10 devices, but after that point, you may prefer a Tri-Band router.

The three WiFi antennas help to boost signal strength and range, and you’ll also get access to 4 1gbps ethernet ports. The TP-Link Archer AC1200 also with a mobile app for easier network management.

Top Speed

The TP-Link Archer AC1200 can give up to 800mbps for a single device or up to 1,750mbps for across the entire network.

Wireless Technology Used

 The TP-Link Archer AC1200 uses Dual Band WiFi. With this, you’re given a single 5GHz channel and one 2.4GHz channel.

Pros

  • Simple to use and manage with the included mobile app
  • Cheap and cheerful
  • Included WiFi antennas make it an upgrade from your standard router

Cons

  • No Tri-Band WiFi means bandwidth isn’t as good as it could be
  • Lack of features to optimize game ping and network performance

ASUS AC3200 WiFi: Best Router for Xbox One

About The Router

The ASUS AC3200 WiFi router is essentially one step down from their top end model that was mentioned above. This router still has Tri-Band WiFi and plenty of features to make it a great gaming router.

This WiFi router uses a 3T3R antenna setup, which essentially means you get further range and stronger signal across three different channels. It’s not as powerful as the 4 antenna setup seen on the AC5300, but it certainly does well enough for 99% of households.

The ASUS AC3200 still reaches the super fast 1,300mbps speeds of its big brother, but overall bandwidth is slightly less.

An included app makes it easy to manage, monitor and maintain the network at all times and included tools also make it easier to share files between devices on the network. The AC3200 also comes with 4 ethernet ports.

Top Speed

 Up to 1,300mbps on a single device and up to 3,200mbps across the entire network.

Pros

  • Incredible 1,300mbps speeds per device
  • Great signal strength and range

 Cons

  • Still quite expensive
  • Doesn’t reach the same bandwidth potential as the AC5300

ASRock G10 AC2600

About The Router

The first thing you’ll notice about the ASRock G10 AC2600 is its unique design. It stands out amongst the crowd of routers above mostly because it doesn’t have antennas sticking out of the top. Instead, the antennas are built into the main chassis.

This not only helps the ASRock G10 AC2600 compete amongst the best routers, but it helps it to maintain a sleek, attractive profile whilst doing it.

This router is only a Dual Band router, which means you’ll be limiting your bandwidth somewhat when comparing to the other high-end routers. With that in mind, it’s only slightly more pricey than the other Dual Band routers on this list and it is far cheaper than the Tri-Band options.

You’re also given the standard 4 ethernet ports. Unfortunately, there’s a lack of support for additional control via mobile.

Top Speed

 Top speed on 5GHz is 1,733mbps. The total available bandwidth across the entire network is 2,600mbps.

Wireless Technology Used

 The ASRock G10 AC2600 uses Dual Band technology, which means the router has one 5GHz channel and one 2.4GHz channel.

Pros

  • Unique design
  • Not much more expensive than other, less activate dual-band routers

 Cons

  • No companion mobile app
  • Not as high bandwidth as Tri-Band routers

Things You Should Know Before Buying a Gaming Router

Is It Worth Spending More On A Gaming Router?

With some of the prices for the routers in this list, it seems a bit ridiculous to think people actually consider shelling out so much cash.

The truth is, a lot of people do find benefit from spending more money on a gaming router. It won’t solve every problem on your home network, but owning a gaming router can help to improve your bandwidth.

If your speed and ping whilst playing games or watching videos is fine up until more people start to use the internet, you may benefit from buying a gaming router.

If your internet is consistently the same speed no matter how many people are connected to it, it may be more related to your actual network speed, and not your router’s throughput. In this case, buying a gaming router wouldn’t be beneficial.

We’ve provided more information on this below.

Will Gaming Routers Make My Internet Faster?

There are two parts to this answer. Firstly, a gaming router cannot make your network speed faster. The speed you get from your internet service provider will stay the same no matter what router you’re using.

However, the speed you actually get on your devices can be impacted by your router. If, for example, you have a cheap router with poor WiFi range, you may find that you get far lower speeds when you’re further away from your router.

You may also notice that your internet starts to slow down completely when other people are downloading games or movies. In this case, a new gaming router can help to remedy the problem by improving your WiFi signal strength and adding more room for multiple devices to download and upload at the same time.

Think of it like this – a gaming router and a standard router are like two separate roads – they both have the same speed limit, but the gaming router has more lanes which means there’s less chance for congestion.

Understanding Tri-Band And Dual Band

In this guide, you may have noticed a lot of talk about Tri-Band and Dual Band technology. But what does this actually mean?

Tri-Band and Dual Band are terms used to describe how many wireless channels, or ‘bands’ can be used as connections at once. On Dual Band you have two bands, and on Tri-Band you have three.

Having a Tri-Band router won’t increase your network speed, but it will allow for more devices to connect at once. Once again, having three bands instead of two is like opening up even more lanes for traffic to go through at the same time.

2.4GHz And 5GHz – What Does It Mean?

2.4GHz and 5GHz are two common frequencies used for wireless network connections. They both have their benefits.

2.4GHz connections are generally slower, but they have more range. 2.4GHz connections are great for when you don’t necessarily need to get the fastest speeds but you would like to have stronger connections in all places around the home.

5GHz connections are much faster but they have less range – this connection is best for getting the best speeds possible, but devices will need to be closer to the router.

Thankfully, many of the routers in this guide use smart connect – with this, the router will automatically assign your device to the most suitable channel, depending on signal strength.

One thing to keep in mind is that not all devices have the 5GHz technology yet. Some mobiles and laptops still have 2.4GHz.

Wireless Vs Wired – Which Is Better?

When it really comes down to it, a wired connection can never beat a wireless connection. With wireless, the signal can be impacted by other frequencies, walls, solid objects, and distance. With a wired connection, the speed will always be the same. Wired connections can also be much faster.

This is why we’ve included two Ethernet switches in this list. If you have lots of computers or smart TVs in your home, you may find it beneficial to route ethernet cables through your home.

Conclusion

In conclusion, the best gaming router for you will depend on a number of factors. If you want the absolute best experience, the ASUS AC5300 is a good place to start. It has the highest network speeds and comes with a range of other features.

It’s, of course, more expensive than others on this list. You’ll also only really see benefit from using it if you have 10 more devices actively using your home internet at once throughout the day.

If you have less than 10 devices regularly connected, a Dual Band router will do just fine. The TP-Link Archer AC1200 is a cheap and cheerful option here. You could alternatively go for the slightly more expensive, but more attractive ASRock G10 AC2600.

If you want to connect more devices via ethernet, picking up an ethernet switch may also be wise. The NETGEAR Nighthawk Pro Gaming (L2) is certainly the best choice on this list, but it is pricey.

The NETGEAR Nighthawk S8000 8 Port Ethernet Switch works out as a more affordable alternative.

Go On, Tell Us What You Think!

Did we miss something?  Come on! Tell us what you think about our buying guide on “Best Router for Gaming 2018 in the comments section.

Jhon Snow
 

An Entrepreneur, a marketer, a techie and a fitness enthusiast. I love to learn and try new things.

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