Want a Better Streaming Experience? Make Sure You Have the Right Router…

A router is often something many cord cutters do not think about; however, your router is the most important part of making sure you have a good streaming experience.

Your router is the device that creates Wi-Fi in your house. Sometimes the router is built into your modem, and sometimes it is its own device. No matter what kind you have, it is important to have a good one if you want a quality streaming experience.

Weak WiFi will cause buffering and other issues as you try to stream your favorite service.

What to Look for in a Router

The main thing you need in a router is the new AC standard. It is the newest Wi-Fi standard and is far faster and better than the old N standard.

The AC standard is made for streaming and does a great job at offering streaming on it.

Not All Routers Are the Same

Remember: Not all routers are the same. There is some truth in the old saying, “you get what you pay for.” While there is no need to buy the most expensive router, I recommend against getting the cheapest one. My suggestion is to look for something in the $80 to $200 range, depending on how many devices and people you have in your house.

The Following Are My Suggested Routers

If you have a house with 10 or fewer devices I suggest the following router:

Netgear Smart Wi-Fi Router AC1750

This router is perfect for anyone who wants a basic router. Not the most powerful range and made for 10 or fewer devices, this is perfect for anyone with a small home and only a few devices.

For anyone with 10 or more devices:

TP-Link AC1900 Wireless Wi-Fi Router

The AC1900 router is a great middle-of-the-road router. Great for anyone who wants a router with a decent range and able to support their growing family full of devices.

For anyone who really wants the best out there. (This is what I use.)

Netgear Nighthawk X4S

The Nighthawk line has long been known as some of the best out there. Now the X4S is a very powerful router for under $200. This router is for anyone with a big family and a good size house that they want to make sure will cover your home.

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  • We’ve got the Netgear Nighthawk R6700 – AC1750 – and it has been rock solid. I see you recommend the Nighthawk series, and a different version of the AC1750 – so I guess we’re on solid footing. 🙂

  • BeefCherry

    For a large house I would recommend getting a mesh Network like Google WiFi or the Netgear orbi. Not only do they actually​ cover the house they provide the speed needed to use multiple streams

    • tbird2252

      Upgraded to the Netgear RBK50 Orbi two weeks ago. Replaced TP-Link Archer C-7…Needed the Orbi to get a consistent signal to a downstairs living area. Orbi is pricey. But results have been very good…

  • Steeler4Ever

    just make sure your clients have the new ac wireless chips in them or you wont see the top speeds. Also make sure you use wpa2 as other encryption as other encryption will slow you down. one more thing disable all previous standards if you dont need them(a,b,g,n).

  • Andrew Webber

    I use a couple of Access Points in my house and it works great.

  • Keith C

    I have a Netgear Nighthawk R7000. I flashed it with DD-WRT firmware. It runs great and I have full control over all the features. It’s also rock solid and secure.

  • thefishhawk

    Nighthawk C7000 here, wifi/modem combo. Huge increase in speeds from my old equipment that was just a few years old. could never figure out why I wasn’t getting what I was paying for mbps wise and this took care of it. Even on non-AC clients, much faster.

  • mr Dave

    I don’t think the Roku stick is AC so it won’t help me.

  • JasonBarton

    don’t forget to test 5ghz vs 2.4ghz if you have the option…..not sure if it switches automatically. 5ghz will probably be a bit faster and might be less congested, but typically does not have as much distance as 2.4 . I would imagine that most of the newer routers are dual band so you should have the option. I never knew what 5ghz was on my router, never used it but wheni switched to it i got a faster signal and was able to get it to reach my upstairs Fire TV with an extender…..i’ve now switched alot of my devices to 5ghz.

  • Richard smith

    Or just run everything wired.

  • TheEnd

    I consider my self somewhat tech savvy but have been forever lost when it comes to routers going to be moving soon if I have this when the cable company comes will they hook this up? Since most of the time the modem has wifi do I actually need this? Am I dumb? lol

    • TheEnd

      What about if I just buy the router with modem doesn’t that mean I don’t need the cable companies stupid modem?

      • Yes, you don’t need two modems. I prefer having the cable modem separate from the router myself, but it’s definitely worthwhile buying your own equipment.

        I doubt they’d configure your router for you (for example, you should change your router’s password and set a wifi password), but they’d probably connect the modem to the cable for you. Physically plugging stuff in is easy, as long as you are careful not to bend the center wire of the cable (and assuming your cables are long enough). Connecting the ethernet cable between a modem and router is even easier.

        • TheEnd

          I’m guessing this isn’t hard just never messed with it before, thanks for the info.

  • Larry Lawrence

    If you want to use a wired connection don’t forget a high end switch to connect your streaming devices.
    I use a Linksys SE4008. Quality of Service (QoS) technology helps prioritize video and audio applications for better streaming.

  • aoliver515

    After I switched to the new modem/router that TWC/Spectrum sent to “upgrade” services, I have been unable to do direct printing from any of my apple devices (MacBook , iPad, iPhone ). Any info regarding the Netgear Nighthawk X4S and TP-Link AC1900 Wireless Wi-Fi Router with apple product compatibility?