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Corbula

New budget router recommendations

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Posted · Original PosterOP

The router I currently have is one of the netduma R1 from a few years ago and while the software side is brilliant the WiFi has started to wane and results in a couple of drops a week. Also while we don't have issues with signal when my sister stays and use iPhones they do, they connect but have little to no bandwidth so just use 4g. This is at less than 10 metres away but in a different room so not far at all. 

 

I have fibre at 80mbps/20mbps and no one is a heavy user really, there's minimal streaming one in a while. 

 

Last year I bought an EAP225 in the aim of better WiFi but saw no difference. I think the times come to replace the router. It's used for general Web browsing on mobiles and tablets, minimal streaming to chromecast and gaming. 

 

Gaming is the big one, I know gaming routers aren't a thing as such but I have heard routers with openwrt are better for gaming traffic speed.

 

So what router would you recommend with strong WiFi signal and would you recommend third party software over first party? My budget is less than £80.

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I've heard the ASUS ROG routers are pretty good and WiFi6... backwards compatible.  Pricey though.


There is no right or wrong... only popular opinion, political correctness, and government edict.

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Posted · Original PosterOP
2 minutes ago, Anus_McSphincter said:

I've heard the ASUS ROG routers are pretty good and WiFi6... backwards compatible.  Pricey though.

Thanks but yea I'm not looking for something too expensive. Would rather a little older and cheaper. I don't need WiFi6 for anything. 

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1 hour ago, Corbula said:

The router I currently have is one of the netduma R1 from a few years ago and while the software side is brilliant the WiFi has started to wane and results in a couple of drops a week. Also while we don't have issues with signal when my sister stays and use iPhones they do, they connect but have little to no bandwidth so just use 4g. This is at less than 10 metres away but in a different room so not far at all. 

 

I have fibre at 80mbps/20mbps and no one is a heavy user really, there's minimal streaming one in a while. 

 

Last year I bought an EAP225 in the aim of better WiFi but saw no difference. I think the times come to replace the router. It's used for general Web browsing on mobiles and tablets, minimal streaming to chromecast and gaming. 

 

Gaming is the big one, I know gaming routers aren't a thing as such but I have heard routers with openwrt are better for gaming traffic speed.

 

So what router would you recommend with strong WiFi signal and would you recommend third party software over first party? My budget is less than £80.

If I'm reading the specs correctly, that wireless router only has support for 2.4GHz (B/G/N), which is great for range but not the best for wireless speed.

 

Before you buy a new router, make sure to check the following:

  1. Apply any firmware updates provided by the manufacturer. Updates might improve performance. Read the manual on how to do this safely.
  2. Position the router to a more central location, away from solid brick/concrete walls if possible and any other object that might cause electromagnetic interference (e.g. microwave ovens, wireless phones that use 2.4GHz, etc.)
  3. Run a wireless site survey from a mobile device using a free wireless analyzer close to the wireless router and at a further location where wireless signals tend to drop off. Look for any overlap of your wireless broadcast channel with those of your neighbours. If there is a free channel available or one that is less crowded, change your router to that channel and see if performance improves. Try to stay on channels 1, 6 and 11 for 2.4GHz if you can help it. In situations where you don't have any other neighbour's wireless signal being detected, you can try expanding the channel width from 20MHz to 40MHz (if the feature is available). On the other hand, in a highly congested WiFi environment on 2.4GHz, stick with a 20MHz channel width.
  4. Turn off any wireless "boosting" technology on your client devices. On Windows, this can be accessed through the adapter's wireless hardware properties. Also, reduce roaming aggressiveness to 'Medium' or less and increase transmit power to the maximum. Disable any power-saving features for the adapter as well.
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Posted · Original PosterOP
7 minutes ago, Falcon1986 said:

If I'm reading the specs correctly, that wireless router only has support for 2.4GHz (B/G/N), which is great for range but not the best for wireless speed.

 

Before you buy a new router, make sure to check the following:

  1. Apply any firmware updates provided by the manufacturer. Updates might improve performance. Read the manual on how to do this safely.
  2. Position the router to a more central location, away from solid brick/concrete walls if possible and any other object that might cause electromagnetic interference (e.g. microwave ovens, wireless phones that use 2.4GHz, etc.)
  3. Run a wireless site survey from a mobile device using a free wireless analyzer close to the wireless router and at a further location where wireless signals tend to drop off. Look for any overlap of your wireless broadcast channel with those of your neighbours. If there is a free channel available or one that is less crowded, change your router to that channel and see if performance improves. Try to stay on channels 1, 6 and 11 for 2.4GHz if you can help it. In situations where you don't have any other neighbour's wireless signal being detected, you can try expanding the channel width from 20MHz to 40MHz (if the feature is available). On the other hand, in a highly congested WiFi environment on 2.4GHz, stick with a 20MHz channel width.
  4. Turn off any wireless "boosting" technology on your client devices. On Windows, this can be accessed through the adapter's wireless hardware properties. Also, reduce roaming aggressiveness to 'Medium' or less and increase transmit power to the maximum. Disable any power-saving features for the adapter as well.

Thanks for the response. Yes the router is only 2.4ghz which has actually been fine as we generally get WiFi were we need it but the dropouts are full dropouts requiring a restart not just blackspots. I don't know if this is why iPhone users have issues with it only being 2.4ghz. 

It's completely up to date and can't really be move anywhere due to all the wiring being behind a built in cabinet that covers half of the room. 

There are quite a few other WiFi networks around which pretty much covers all of the channels. In some cases with WiFi analyser there WiFi is stronger in our house than our own. That's why I'm looking a new router, that also might be better for gaming. I know the ones named that are a gimmick though. 

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