If your internet habits don’t just involve regular browsing, social networking and visits to YouTube, but heavy-duty streaming as well, there is a huge chance your regular router won’t be powerful enough to fulfill your every need. In other words, you will probably have to purchase another device, the best router for streaming, that would make all that possible.
If you are not that familiar with routers in general and are a bit hesitant towards this whole purchase process, this guide should calm you down and help you find the best streaming router possible, without having a sweat.
All you need to do is to read the following lines carefully and try to find yourself a perfect fit.
How to Choose the Best Router for Streaming
Finding the best streaming router shouldn’t be a hard task. You need to follow a few guidelines, read a few reviews and the proper device will come up eventually.
Streaming router characteristics that make the biggest difference between the routers and you need to pay your attention to, in order to get yourself the best streaming router possible, are the following:
Data Transfer Speed
Data transfer speed isn’t the only aspect of a router you should be looking for; however, this characteristic plays a major role considering the overall performance. Therefore, if you are looking for an efficient gaming and 4K streaming device, you should always go for the highest possible speeds.
Feature-rich product is always a good option, even if we are talking about some other device and not a router. With more features, you are getting better overall versatility and usability and ultimately a better value.
MU MIMO, Beamforming, VPN support and Guest networking are just some of those features. They are not essential but can drastically increase your router performance and deliver a much better overall user experience. For that reason, choose the router wisely and go for as many features as you can.
Good connectivity and plenty of options in this department are usually a very practical thing for any router. More LAN ports mean that you can make more wired connections and that way make all your Wi-Fi lacking hardware part of your network; devices such as printers, scanners or PCs.
Multiple USB ports allow you to include your external hard drives into the configuration and use them as NAS, or to connect a 3G/4G modem.
In other words, benefits are numerous, and it is up to you to be aware of them and use them.
Best Routers for Streaming
NETGEAR Nighthawk RAX40
An Excellent Entry-level AX Router
If you are attracted to Wi-Fi 6 technology and want to check all its virtues, but have a limited budget, NETGEAR Nighthawk RAX40 is the device for you.
This entry-level, Dual-band Wi-Fi router will bring everything you need and much more, including combined data transfer speed of 3200Mbps (600Mbps in 2.4GHz range and 2400Mbps in 5GHz range), MU MIMO 2×2 functionality, Beamforming, etc.
NETGEAR Nighthawk RAX40 is equipped with four Gigabit LAN ports and one Gigabit WAN port, along with one USB3.0 port that allows for connection of both 3G/4G modems and external drives. Also, this router comes with support for Amazon Alexa Voice Controls, VPN and OFDMA, and with numerous security features such as 128-bit AES encryption, firewall, Guest networking, etc. that will allow you to have a worry-free Wi-Fi experience.
NETGEAR Nighthawk RAX40 is fitted with Intel (Lantiq) PXB4395 dual-core CPU, 512MB of RAM and Intel WAV654 radio, and delivers excellent signal coverage, ideal for medium-sized homes.
This device isn’t cheap. However, it is fairly priced considering its feature-rich character and overall presents a great value for the money as you would expect from the best router for streaming.
- Easy to setup
- Fairly priced
- Powerful signal
A High-Performing Budget-Oriented Wi-Fi Router
TP-Link Archer A9 is an affordable and well-performing router that will satisfy your every need, especially considering online gaming and HD streaming.
Although it looks pretty similar to Archer A7, A9 brings a lot of upgrades and advantages over it, including MU MIMO and Beamforming functionality and better signal coverage. Moreover, this router comes with Smart Connect and VPN Server feature and offers the very handy Amazon Alexa support.
TP-Link Archer A9 has a two-year warranty and supports for a combined data transfer speed of around 1900Mbps (600Mbps in 2.4GHz range and 1300Mbps in 5GHz range). It is equipped with Qualcomm QCN5502 CPU and 128MB of RAM and altogether delivers very good overall performance that puts it in front of the models such as Archer C9 and Tenda AC18.
This dual-band router has four Gigabit LAN ports and one Gigabit WAN port, and offers one USB2.0 connection, which isn’t much; however, it is good enough for this type of device.
All in all, Archer A9 is a solid-performing, feature-rich Wi-Fi router and one of the best routers for streaming for the price.
- Easy to set up
An Excellent Home Streaming Compatriot
If you are looking for a fast and efficient Wi-Fi router that will help you with your streaming, Linksys EA7500 Dual-Band Wifi Router for Home is the device for you.
As its name suggests, its primary use is in homes, where its coverage of around 140 square meters has the best impact. EA7500 supports for the simultaneous connection of up to 15 devices and allows for easy setup and control through the Linksys App.
It supports data transfer speed of 600Mbps in 2.4GHz band and 1300Mbps in 5GHz band and offers numerous features that include: MU MIMO, Beamforming, Guest Access, Parental Controls, External Storage settings, etc.
EA7500 is fitted with 1.4GHz dual-core Qualcomm CPU and offers decent connectivity thanks to four Gigabit LAN ports and one WAN, USB3.0 and USB2.0 port.
Its performance is fairly good, and it positions it above the competition such as Archer C2600 and Asus RT-AC88U; however, bellow the Linksys Smart Wi-Fi Router AC 1900 (WRT1900AC).
Linksys EA7500 is a great home router and one of the best Wi-Fi routers for gaming and streaming, with only one minor flaw and that is its higher price.
- Easy to use and install
- Plenty of options
An Almighty Router in an Affordable Package
TP-Link Archer A20 is a tri-band router with plenty of features and an excellent performance that will satisfy even the most demanding gamers and streamers, or in other words; the best router for 4k streaming and gaming.
As mentioned, this router is feature-rich and offers MU MIMO, Beamforming and Link Aggregation. Also, it comes with VPN Server function, Guest networking, Rangeboost and much more. It is compatible with Mac, Windows and Linux and offers great connectivity that involves: four Gigabit LAN ports, one Gigabit WAN port and one USB2.0 port and one USB3.0 port.
TP-Link Archer A20 is equipped with Broadcom 1.8GHz quad-core and 512MB of RAM and supports for a data transfer speed of 750Mbps in 2.4GHz range and 1625Mbps on each of the two 5GHz bands. Moreover, this device comes with a two-year warranty and altogether delivers fast performance that makes it ideal for gaming. Therefore, if you are searching for the best router for gaming and true value for the money, TP-Link Archer A20 is the one you need.
- Easy to install
- Good security features
- Fairly priced
- Average 5GHz performance
A Blazing-Fast Wi-Fi Router
Good data transfer speed, numerous features and affordable price are the most noticeable characteristics of D-Link Exo AC2600 MU-Mimo (DIR-882-US) Router, a device that can be successfully used for both gaming purposes and 4K streaming.
This router is equipped with numerous features such as MU MIMO, Smartbeam and Beamforming. Also, it is fitted with D-Link’s QoS Engine that allows for device prioritization and deciding which device can use the largest part of the bandwidth.
D-Link Exo has a dual-core 880MHz CPU, 128MB of flash and 512MB of RAM, which is more than enough for super-fast performance and combined data transfer speed of 2600Mbps (800Mbps in 2.4GHz range and 1733Mbps in 5GHz one). This router supports 4×4 data streams and offers solid connectivity that involves one USB2.0 and one USB3.0 port, as well as four Gigabit LAN ports and one WAN Gigabit port.
Overall, D-Link Exo is a device that perfectly fits into any home and delivers both decent coverage and excellent performance. In other words, if you are looking for the best affordable router, with excellent streaming capabilities, D-Link Exo should be your first choice.
- Easy setup
- Blazing fast performance
- Good connectivity
- Changing settings demands for long waiting periods
A Router Designed for Professionals
If you are a professional and searching for the best wireless router for streaming that supports open-source firmware, Linksys WRT3200ACM MU-MIMO Gigabit Wi-Fi Router is the product for you.
With this router, you will get solid coverage, extremely fast combined data transfer speed of 3.2Gbps (600Mbps in 2.4GHz and 1300Mbps in each of the 5GHz bands), Windows and Mac compatibility, and plenty of features.
Although officially Linksys WRT3200ACM is a dual-band router equipped with a special Tri-Stream 160 technology that doubles the bandwidth of the 5GHz band, the fact is that it is actually a tri-band one. It comes with one band in 2.4GHz frequency and two bands in 5GHz one, which is the characteristic of tri-band routers in general.
Linksys WRT3200ACM is supplied with 1.8GHz dual-core CPU, 512MB RAM and 256MB flash and in general offers an exceptional lag-free performance suitable for both professional and home use. It is very flexible; it offers full open-source firmware support and great connectivity that includes four Gigabit LAN ports, one Gigabit WAN port, one USB3.0 port and one USB2.0/eSATA port.
All in all, if you are after a reliable solution for your streaming needs, Linksys WRT3200ACM is the router to choose.
- Super-fast performance
- Good connectivity
- It supports open-source firmware
- Easy setup
- Average 2.4GHz performance
NETGEAR Nighthawk (R6900P)
A High-Performing Long-Range Router
NETGEAR Nighthawk Smart (R6900P) is a router that comes with plenty of features and offers a long-range signal. Moreover, it is very fast and offers Smart Wi-Fi functions. In other words, if you want to get yourself the best router for 4k streaming, this one is pretty much it.
NETGEAR Nighthawk Smart (R6900P) is sleek looking; it is fairly priced and with its signal, it can cover an area of around 170 square meters. Also, it supports for combined data transfer speed of 1900Mbps (600Mbps in 2.4GHz band and 1300Mbps in 5GHz band), offers solid connectivity (four Gigabit LAN ports, one Gigabit WAN port and one USB3.0 port) and comes with a handful of features that, among others, include MU MIMO, Beamforming, VPN support, QoS, Smart Connect and even Amazon Alexa Voice controls support.
This router is fitted with a dual-core 1GHz CPU, 256MB of RAM and 128MB of flash memory. Modest specifications that, on the other hand, deliver more than a pleasing performance, which easily places NETGEAR Nighthawk Smart (R6900P) among the best Wi-Fi routers in general.
All in all, if you want a router with an excellent value for your money, NETGEAR Nighthawk Smart (R6900P) is the device for you.
- Excellent VPN support
- Great range
- Average 2.4GHz performance
eero Pro mesh WiFi system
A Practical Wi-Fi Streaming Solution for Wide Area Coverage
A fast performance followed by an unlimited list of features isn’t always the first thing people expect from their routers. Sometimes it is the reliability of its connection, and more importantly, a large area of signal coverage.
One of such devices that allows you to have a reliable network in a large space or, to be precise, at up to area of 450 square meters, is eero Pro mesh WiFi system. The system consists of three eero Pro devices that can individually cover up to 150 square meters and together, the already mentioned impressive 450 square meters.
This system offers 2×2 MU MIMO, Beamforming and VPN functionality and networking in three bands 2.4GHz, 5.2GHz and 5.8GHz range.
Each of the eero Pro devices is fitted with 700MHz quad-core CPU, 4GB of flash memory and 512MB of RAM. Moreover, they are equipped with two Gigabit Ethernet ports that can be used as either LAN or WAN ports and one USB Type-C connection.
eero Pro mesh devices are compatible with iOS and Android systems and come with a one-year warranty. The devices themselves are very practical and can be used as Wi-Fi extender, routers, or signal booster.
Altogether, if you are looking for the best long-range Wi-Fi router, eero Pro mesh WiFi system should without a doubt be among your top picks.
- Easy setup
- Excellent coverage
- Not the best Amazon Alexa integration
- Not as fast as other mesh systems
Whether you are a professional or you are just thinking of trying streaming, we are sure that there is a device in our list that can fulfill your needs. So, read it again carefully, consider your needs in general, and get going! Good luck!