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Compare gaming routers and modems
|ASUS ROG Rapture GT-AX11000 Pro||$$$$||Tri-band, triple-level gaming acceleration||11,000 Mbps||Best overall gaming router|
|ARRIS Surfboard S33||$$||DOCSIS 3.1||2,500 Mbps||Best overall gaming modem|
|ASUS RT-AX68U||$$||Wi-Fi 6||2,700 Mbps||Budget and value|
|ASUS ROG Rapture GT-AXE16000||$$$$$||Quad-band, Wi-Fi 6E||16,000 Mbps||Speed|
When it comes to gaming, you need the right equipment to have the best experience. The biggest issue that gamers face is latency, or lag between the gamer’s action and the server’s reaction.
This is why gamers need gaming-specific equipment to handle their busy network. Luckily, there are routers and modems made specifically for gaming. We’ve listed our favorites below.
Best overall gaming router: ASUS ROG Rapture GT-AX11000 Pro
$$$$ | 11,000 Mbps
What we like
Blazing fast speeds
Things to consider
The ASUS ROG Rapture GT-AX11000 Pro is our pick for best overall gaming router because of its blazing fast speeds and gaming features.
This is a tri-band gaming router with eight antennas that boasts speeds up to 11,000 Mbps, so it can handle hardcore gaming activity. It also has triple-level game acceleration, which means that gaming gets network prioritization. The GT-AX11000 has one 2.5 G port and one 10 G port for an even faster connection.
While this router is on the expensive side, most gaming routers are since they have to be able to handle heavy bandwidth and have more unique features than your everyday router. It has 4.4 out of 5 stars on Amazon with 74% of reviewers giving it five stars. Most customers praise this router’s speed and powerful connection.
Best gaming modem overall: ARRIS Surfboard S33 multi-gig modem
$$ | 2,500 Mbps
What we like
DOCSIS 3.1 technology
Two Ethernet ports
Things to consider
Not a gaming-specific modem
No gaming features
The ARRIS Surfboard S33 multi-gig modem isn’t technically branded as a gaming modem, but its multi-gig speeds make it perfect for gamers.
It supports speeds up to 2,500 Mbps and has both a 1G and 2.5G Ethernet port, so it is perfect for multi-gig internet plans from 1 – 2 Gbps. The ARRIS S33 also has DOCSIS 3.1 technology, which is the latest technology providing better security and reduces latency. While it has no unique gaming features that gaming routers usually have, the ARRIS S33 is still a great choice as a gaming modem.
It has 4.3 out of 5 stars on Amazon with almost 70% of reviewers awarding it five stars. Customers praise its aesthetic design and fast speeds.
Best bang for your buck: Asus RT-AX68U
If you’re after a fast connection, but don’t want to break the bank to get it, the ASUS RT-AX68U is the device for you. This gaming router provides top speeds of up to 2700 Mbps. On top of that, it also supports the latest connection standard, WiFi 6. This will help the router handle multiple connections at once, meaning that having other people in your home who are connected to the internet won’t slow you down.
While some gamers prefer their game systems to be hardwired for a more consistent connection, this router provides about as steady a connection as you could ask for out of a wireless network. With Asus AiMesh support, you can create a flexible and seamless connectivity across your entire house by adding other AiMesh-compatible routers.
What we like
Wi-Fi 6 support
Things to consider
Could use improved network prioritization tools
Best for speed: ASUS ROG Rapture GT-AXE16000
$$$$$ | 16,000 Mbps
What we like
Has some of the fastest speeds on the market
Unique gaming features
Things to consider
Wi-Fi 6E is still pretty new, so many devices don’t support it yet
If cost is not an issue and you’re looking for the absolute fastest speeds for your gaming experience, then you can’t go wrong with the ASUS ROG-Rapture GT-AXE16000.
This router is one of the first quad-band routers on the market, so it has the new 6 GHz frequency band which allows for wider channels, higher network capacity, lower latency and less interference. You can game seamlessly with speeds up to 16000 Mbps and triple-level game acceleration. It also has dual 10G ports which provide even faster data transfer speeds.
The GT-AXE 16000 has 4.4 out of 5 stars on Amazon, so its customers love its ability to handle heavy–duty gaming. On the downside, it’s very expensive and is a Wi-Fi 6E router which isn’t fully compatible with other equipment yet.
Should you rent or buy your equipment?
When looking for equipment, you may be wondering if you should rent or buy your modem and router. Usually, your ISP will give you the option to rent a router for a small fee every month, and with this comes added tech support and usually upgrades to equipment.
Buying, on the other hand, allows for more autonomy in your choice of equipment, which is important when it comes to gaming. You need a modem and router that not only has fast speeds, but has gaming features and low latency as well. In this case, buying your own router is the best choice and you will even save money in the long run.
What to look for in a modem and router for gaming
- Top speeds: When it comes to gaming, top speeds are important. You’re going to want your modem and router to be able to handle large amounts of data, so look for top speeds and support for 802.11ac.
- Traffic prioritization: Gamers need to make sure that their gaming experience is not going to be interrupted by others in the household using the internet at the same time. Look for routers and modems that have traffic prioritization features that make sure that a high-intensity activity like gaming is treated with priority over someone who is simply browsing the web.
- Wi-Fi vs. Ethernet: Wireless internet is convenient and allows you to connect without being locked into a location, but wireless connections are almost always less steady than hard wiring via an Ethernet port. Consider if your home is a good situation for a wireless connection with a router or if you would rather be hard wired to your modem.
- Equipment: While the type of console or PC that you use shouldn’t matter when you are considering what router or modem to buy, the amount of platforms that you use to game does matter. If you game on multiple platforms, you’ll want a router or modem with multiple channels or ports to stay connected across all your devices.
How we chose the best router and modem for gaming
To pick the best gaming routers and modems on the market, we looked at a number of factors that the typical gamer should consider. We scoured dozens of products on the market, considering the need for top-level performance, including high speeds, low latency and ping.
We considered traffic management and prioritization, which helps performance and can prevent lag when multiple devices are connected to the internet. We also took into account price and overall value, recognizing that the most expensive is not always the best. Here are some of the qualities that we considered when making our selection for the best gaming routers and modems available:
- Supported speeds
- Price and value
- Specific customer reviews
- What device it is best for
Need a faster internet plan?
While having a powerful modem and router can be the difference between a steady connection and spotty one and can help maximize your internet connection, it can’t speed up your internet. If you find yourself in need of a faster internet connection, you will have to upgrade or switch your internet plan or provider.
The bottom line
Getting a good modem and router for gaming will provide you with a more optimized internet connection capable of reaching top speeds and prioritizing your gaming experience so you don’t get bogged down with lag or latency. Owning your equipment provides you with more flexibility and better overall devices than you would get renting from your internet service provider. Remember that your router and modem will only be as good as your internet connection, so make sure you get the plan that you need to get top speeds.
Written by:Camryn Smith
Camryn Smith is an Associate Writer with Allconnect.com. She specializes in writing about the broadband industry and helping consumers navigate complex internet service purchasing decisions…. Read more
Edited by:Robin Layton
Editor, Broadband Content
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