The best Wi-Fi routers of 2024

Camryn Smith

Jan 1, 2024 — 7 min read

Owning your own router is an investment that usually pays off within a year. We researched all the latest models to find our favorites.

Your Wi-Fi router is your gateway to getting online, turning the wired internet connection from your provider into a wireless network for your home. While your internet service provider decides on what maximum speeds you can achieve and how much data you can use, it’s your wireless router that establishes that much-desired home Wi-Fi connection for your devices. 

However, it’s no secret that not all wireless routers are created equal, and certain models will be a better fit for your family depending on your online activities, amount of connected devices and the size of your home. Prices for wireless routers vary greatly depending on their capabilities. You can find budget options around $50, while the latest hardware can go all the way up to $500. 

Our top picks:

Netgear Nighthawk AX8

Best overall

Netgear Nighthawk AX8

Netgear’s Nighthawk AX8 tops our list as the best overall router because of its consistently strong speeds and overall performance. More than any other router we looked at, the AX8 is able to cut through walls and floors, delivering gigabit speeds to every corner of the house. Netgear says this model can connect devices up to 90 feet away, but you can expect performance to tail off after about 50 feet. If you need more range, we recommend a mesh network (more on that below). 

The AX8 also has advanced malware protection and the latest firmware updates upon installation. It even works with Disney’s Circle app, which allows you to block inappropriate content on certain devices. This router has 4 out of 5 stars on Amazon with many customers praising its performance. One customer said, “After two months, this router is still the best one I’ve ever seen. I’ve got 42 devices attached to it and it doesn’t even cough.”

What we like

  • Excellent speeds

  • Wi-Fi 6 compatible

  • Great security features

Things to consider

  • Expensive

  • Not great for larger homes

ASUS ROG Rapture GT-AX11000

Best for gaming

Our pick for best gaming router has the speeds and features to make any gaming experience seamless. 

ASUS GT-AX11000 gaming router

The ASUS ROG Rapture GT-AX11000 is our pick for best gaming router. It boasts speeds up to 11,000 Mbps, has four Ethernet ports and can support up to 100 devices. The GT-AX11000 also has some pretty great gaming features, like triple-level game acceleration which reduces latency and game packet prioritization, which analyzes your network traffic to prioritize your experience. 

Its tri-band technology allows it to operate on two 5 GHz bands and one 2.4 GHz band. This router lets you dedicate one of those 5 GHz bands to gaming only, giving you more bandwidth for your gaming experience. It has 4.5 out of 5 stars on Amazon. One customer said, “The specs on this router are currently unbeatable.” Another claimed, “If you’re serious about your gaming and want a top-notch performance, it’s worth the investment.” 

What we like

  • Wi-Fi 6

  • Tri-band

  • Gaming features

  • Multi-gig port

Things to consider

  • Expensive

NETGEAR Nighthawk RAXE500

Best for fast speeds

If you’re looking for a router with unbeatable speeds, then this is the choice for you. 

netgear nighthawk raxe500

If fast speeds are your main concern, then the NETGEAR Nighthawk RAXE500 Wi-Fi 6E router won’t disappoint. It has tri-band speeds up to 10.8 Gbps and supports Wi-Fi 6E, the latest standard of Wi-Fi that performs on the 6 GHz frequency band. It also has four Ethernet ports for even faster wired connections and can support 12 simultaneous streams. 

This router also offers an easy setup process right within the Nighthawk app, parental controls and NETGEAR Armor security. It has 4.4 out of 5 stars on Amazon with most customers praising its performance and claiming: “Best router I’ve ever owned.” 

What we like

  • Excellent speeds

  • Wi-Fi 6E compatible

  • Security and parental controls

  • Multi-gig LAN/WAN port

Things to consider

  • Expensive

  • Lacking unique features

TP-Link Archer AX21

Best for your budget

This router will give you a great performance without breaking the bank. 


The TP-Link Archer AX21 is our budget pick because it’s affordable without sacrificing performance. Although much cheaper than some other options we’ve listed, the AX21 is a Wi-Fi 6 router with great speeds and coverage. While it won’t compete with the fastest routers on the market, it’s a great choice if you’re looking to upgrade to Wi-Fi 6 and just need something simple and affordable. 

This router has 4.5 out of 5 stars on Amazon from over 15,000 ratings. People love this router because of its consistency and performance. One reviewer stated, “I don’t need cutting edge features, so why buy them? All I wanted was good range, speed and a firewall. I got all three!”

What we like

  • Affordable

  • Great speeds

  • Decent range

  • Wi-Fi 6

Things to consider

  • Works best in apartments or smaller homes

  • Lacks unique features

Eero 6+

Best mesh router

Mesh networks are great if you want the most coverage for your home. This is our top choice.

Eero 6+ mesh router

If you’re looking to upgrade to Wi-Fi 6 or a mesh network, Amazon’s Eero 6+ is a great option. This upgraded version of Amazon’s Eero 6, available in a two or three-piece system, provides coverage for homes up to 4,500 sq. ft. and is known for its easy installation. The nodes are also small with a clean design, so you won’t have trouble finding space for them in your home.

The Eero 6+ does not support multi-gig connectivity like some other top mesh systems on the market, but it still produces fast, consistent speeds and coverage that make a difference in multistory homes, and at a more affordable price than most systems. You can also easily manage the system through the app, whether it’s tracking speeds or activating parental controls. While it may seem expensive, it offers great performance for the price. With 4.5 stars on Amazon, customers raved about its easy setup and performance. One said, “As soon as the eero 6+ was up and running we noticed a significant difference in the Wi-Fi coverage in the house. Pure night and day.” 

What we like

  • Easy to set up and use

  • Wi-Fi 6

  • Solid performance

  • Great coverage

Things to consider

  • Cannot support multi-gig speeds

Our top picks compared

Why you should buy your own router

In general, buying your own router instead of renting will usually pay itself off in about a year. Most internet service providers charge around $5-$15/mo. for modem and router rentals, while those same models usually cost about $100.

Granted, you still may have to pay a modem fee regardless, but in most cases, you’ll get faster speeds and save money in the long run by purchasing your router. Purchasing instead of renting will also give you the ability to choose a better-performing router and customize it to your personal network needs.

Learn more about renting vs. buying your router

How we chose our favorite wireless routers

To find the the best wireless routers, we focused on three factors while we were comparing models: 

  • Speed: The more devices and users, the higher speeds you’ll need, so aim high. In most wireless routers, you’ll find both 5 and 2.4 GHz bands. The 5 GHz band can handle more bandwidth but in a shorter range. The 2.4 GHz band can handle less bandwidth but in a larger range. Shoot for a dual or even tri-band wireless router to break up congestion. Just keep in mind that while a wireless router might be able to achieve a certain download speed, your internet service provider ultimately decides on what’s possible.
  • Antennas: Any wireless router will only be as good as the signal it projects and the antenna is a major part of that. If your desired wireless router doesn’t have any external antennas, think about choosing a model that’s based on a mesh network.
  • Features: Many wireless routers come with additional security features like guest networking, automatic firmware updates and remote management features. We required all of our routers to have the latest WPA, WPA2 or WPA3 certifications. 

Overall, we narrowed our search down to over 20 of the models according to customer reviews and ratings from testing sites like Consumer Reports. From there, we compared the features and prices on each one to find the best value for every situation.

What about Wi-Fi 6?

Wi-Fi 6 is an industry certification program based on the 802.11ax standard for wireless networks. It was approved by the Wi-Fi alliance in February, 2021, and it allows for 30% faster speeds, lower latency and higher data capacity. Many devices are equipped with Wi-Fi 6, like the iPhone 11, 12 and newer Samsung Galaxies. But you’ll need a Wi-Fi 6 router to take advantage of them, and these tend to be on the pricier side. 

You may need a faster internet plan

While a new router can significantly increase your internet speed, it can only work with the connection your ISP is giving you. In many cases, the quickest way to a speed boost is to upgrade your internet plan. Not sure if you’re getting what you’re paying for? Take our speed test below to find out.

Your speed test results:

Download Speeds

888 Mbps

Upload Speeds

88 Mbps

Need more for the price?

Try these helpful hacks to improve your internet speed. Or if you just want more bang for your buck, check out providers near you with more speed for the price. Either way, we’ll help you find what you need.

View providers near me Rather chat? Give us a call: (844) 451-2720
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Pro Tip: For best results, use an Ethernet cord to connect your router or modem directly to your device before you run the test.

If the speed that comes up is significantly slower than your plan advertises, a wireless router could give you a lift. For more steps you can take, we recommend checking out the following guides:

The bottom line

While Wi-Fi routers can initially be expensive, they often pay for themselves over a long enough period because you won’t have to worry about equipment fees through your internet provider anymore. And if you want to have a fully connected smart home or a lag-free gaming setup, a powerful router is absolutely essential. But a router can only do so much — let our experts know if you need any assistance in choosing a home Wi-Fi plan or use our free serviceability tool to check which providers are in your area.


Do I need a modem and a router?

If you want to connect to the internet and use it on all of your devices, then yes you need a modem and router or a gateway device. 

Yes. Your router can affect your internet speed if it is out of date or not able to handle your internet connection speeds. You need a router that has the capacity to support the speed you have with your internet plan. If you have a 1 Gbps plan, but your router can only handle 500 Mbps, then you won’t be getting the speeds you pay for.

Yes, you can find routers that are meant for particular activities. Gaming routers are quite common and often include unique features meant to enhance a user’s gaming experience, for example. 


A router is necessary if you intend to access the internet wirelessly on your devices, so it is definitely worth it. 

Camryn Smith

Written by:

Camryn Smith

Cammy is a writer with Allconnect, growing her broadband industry knowledge for over a year on the internet marketplace. Her expertise lies in home internet and broadband service with a focus on providers, plans… Read more

Robin Layton

Edited by:

Robin Layton

Editor, Broadband Content

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