The 8 Best 802.11n Routers to Buy in 2017

Stay connected with these top routers

As your home fills up with smart TVs, smartphones, tablets and other devices that require a constant connection to the Internet, it’s more critical than ever to have a good router. The good news is that with a 802.11n router, there are options out there to fit every need and budget. Whether you’re a gamer, a streamer or a Web surfer, we’ve narrowed down the best models available today.

With excellent coverage, superb data rates and a strong wireless connection, the Asus RT-N66U is our pick for the best all-around 802.11n router. The strong coverage and wireless connection are aided by the three detachable 3dBi and 5dBi antennas, covering both the 2.4Ghz and 5Ghz bands. As a true N900 dual-band router, both the 2.4 and 5Ghz bands can separately support speeds up to 450Mbps.

Thanks to Asus’ Quick Internet Setup tool, you’re online within a few minutes and a couple of quick configurations connect you directly to your ISP. It's available in both black and white and shows you the current connection status through blue LED lights on the front.

If it’s speed you’re after, look to the Linksys EA4500 N900 Wi-Fi Wireless Dual-Band+ Router for great results in the 802.11n router space. Touting 450Mbps (plus an additional 450Mbps speed on the 2.4GHz and 5GHz bands), the EA4500 is primed for gaming or file sharing. The inclusion of dual-band 3x3 wireless supports the high bandwidth required for intense applications such as video streaming services with uninterrupted playback.

The rear of the router supports four Gigabit ports, as well as a USB port for fast hard-wired connections, while the addition of Smart Wi-Fi software allows you to quickly and easily monitor and adjust your router settings through the Smart Wi-Fi app available on both Android and iOS. The app also allows the user to prioritize different devices on the network that require faster speeds, as well as the ability to set up a guest network by creating a unique limited-time password for additional security.

With a  sleek design and steady performance, the TP-Link N600 WDR3500 Wireless Wi-Fi Dual-band Router works off both the 2.4Ghz and 5Ghz bands, offering 300Mbps throughput speeds on both bands for total network speed of 600Mbps. Reaching these speeds is accomplished via two detachable antennas that provide a significant boost to the signal. Additional features include guest network access, USB ports and the ability to manage individual devices connected to the router through IP-based bandwidth controls. TP-Link also includes live parental controls, which allow parents to limit or restrict areas of the Internet to children depending on their age.

The TP-Link N450 TL-WR940N Wi-Fi Router is a standout choice for video streamers who are looking for a solid and reliable connection. Capable of speeds up to 450Mbps, the WR940N is ideal for anyone who enjoys bandwidth-heavy tasks (read: you frequently enjoy binge-watching the latest Netflix or Amazon Prime shows). With speeds that are 15 times faster and offer five times more range than 802.11g routers, the WR940N offers a 3x3 MIMO connection to maintain a lag-free streaming experience.

While the utilitarian design won’t stand out in a crowd, the three 5dBi hardware antennas help to increase the range and stability of the connection throughout a home or office. With such a heavy emphasis on streaming video, the WR940N adds the ability for parents to set limits on how and when devices can be connected to the network, as well as what sites they can visit.

Featuring dual-band Wi-Fi connectivity, the Netgear N600 WNDR3400 won't break the bank and offers 300Mbps, plus an additional 300Mbps for a total speed output of 600Mbps on both 2.4 and 5GHz bands. Beyond raw speed, the highlight of the WNDR3400 is the antenna system that reduces interference inside a home, allowing for a stronger network signal overall. Additional networking features include a guest zone, network storage, USB external hard-drive support and a traffic meter. It's missing a Gigabit Ethernet connection, but that shouldn't be a deal breaker.

Designed with gamers in mind, Belkin’s N600 Dual-Band N+ Router has wireless speeds up to 300Mbps on the 2.4GHz band and an additional 300Mbps on the 5GHz band. With multi-beam technology baked in, the N600 continues to perform whether it’s supporting one device or five separate devices. This technology is good for gamers who aren’t looking to hog a network connection since the multi-beam allows for any additional connections to maintain throughput speeds without incurring lag.

Additionally, the Belkin works easily with the included media server by myTwonky, which allows for simple sharing of photos and videos across the network to any connected device. Beyond outstanding gaming performance, Belkin’s own internal tests discovered the N600 can deliver noticeably greater Wi-Fi speeds up to 60 feet away when sized up to similar models.

When it comes to a great value for an N router, the Netgear WNDR4500 N900 Gigabit Wi-Fi router is the best choice around. Supporting simultaneous network technologies, the WNDR4500 has both 2.4GHz and 5GHz bands. Each band can handle up to 450Mbps  for a total potential throughput of 900Mbps. While its design requires vertical placement, installation is a snap since the router comes preconfigured right out of the box and there's an app to help move things along. The inclusion of two USB ports on the rear of the router double as hosts for external hard drives and printers. It has a range of nearly 150 feet.

The Netgear N300 Wi-Fi Router offers up to 300Mbps of total performance and has dual 5dBi antennas. Thanks to Netgear's Genie application, setup is a snap for both Android and iOS users (you can get online within minutes of taking the router of the box). The downloadable application even allows you to turn the Wi-Fi on and off for power conservation. It also comes with guest network access for users who need one-off access to the Wi-Fi while visiting.

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