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Advice on Routers with greatest WiFi range and strength.

Discussion in 'Wireless Buying Advice' started by Josh71, Oct 12, 2017.

  1. Josh71

    Josh71 Occasional Visitor

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2017
    Messages:
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    Hello - bit of a novice to networking.

    I’m trying to decide on a router replacement that will give me the best potential coverage ( biggest reach) in my home, to guarantee my best chance of having full coverage in my Victorian home. After extensive research and a rather big learning curve, I’ve narrowed it down to the following:

    Asus AC86U - £200
    Netgear R7800 - £159.99
    Synology RT2600AC - £224.55

    & the more modest:
    Ac68u - £139.99
    R7000 - £126

    Which of these routers are likely to have the better WiFi reach and penetration? I live in a 3 bed Victorian semi with an attic room.

    Do the more modestly priced routers have the same reach in terms of wi-fi or is it worth spending more to guarantee better coverage?

    I’ve read a glowing review on Amazon uk on the Synology in terms of reach and stability which also referenced this website. I’ve also read here that the new AC86U has a new chip set which should result in better WiFi reach.

    If there are gains in WiFi coverage with the more expensive choices, are they likely to be substantial improvements or just modest gains?

    Speed and future proofing is a bonus. Stability and reach being my main concern.

    Mostly using mobile devices for accessing internet, a laptop, and an older iMac 2008, smart tv,

    Aspiration to put photo library, iTunes, and time machine on an external nas eventually :) perhaps nice to have the ability to stream hd films from a hard drive to smart tv


     
  2. avtella

    avtella Senior Member

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    Can’t comment on the 86U as it’s fairly new but the R7800 I know has among the best 5Ghz band, most reviews I have seen put it above its peers. The 2.4 GHz is about the same as the rest. The RT2600AC is close in performance as it uses the same CPU chipset. The 86U is a 3x3 unit so I would assume WiFi performance theoretically should be lower than the other two which are 4x4 units.
     
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  3. Josh71

    Josh71 Occasional Visitor

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    Thanks. With the performance of the 4x4s being near equal with WiFi reach in both 2.4ghz and 5ghz it sounds like the cheaper R7800 is the sensible option, particularly if what you say about the 86u in regards to relative range/coverage is correct.

    Just have to check if I’m missing out on any important features if I go for the R7800 over the Synology.

    I take it the coverage of the 4x4s is an upgrade on the ac68u and R7000?
     
  4. avtella

    avtella Senior Member

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    It’s a definite upgrade over the R7000/AC68U , not a night and day difference though. The Synology has a better UI, Netgear’s kinda sucks though they will release an updated UI pretty soon as the test phase is over.
     
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  5. thiggins

    thiggins Mr. Easy Staff Member

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    Have you looked at the Router Ranker? There are subranks for range.

    There generally are no miracle routers that have highest range on both bands, both up and downlink.
     
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  6. Josh71

    Josh71 Occasional Visitor

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    Thanks - I’ve checked out the sub heading for range. Is the current list up to date? The reason I ask is I thought the RT2600ac was comparable to the R7800 sharing no 1 spot for their class, and yet it’s not even on either the 2.4ghz or 5ghz lists for range
     
  7. thiggins

    thiggins Mr. Easy Staff Member

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    Josh71 likes this.
  8. Josh71

    Josh71 Occasional Visitor

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    Great thanks, that’s very helpful. That confirms the good range attainable for the RT2600ac on 2.4ghz.
     
  9. Ryan_C

    Ryan_C New Around Here

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    I'm in the same position as OP... moving to a bigger place where range could be a concern (e.g. throughput at distant).

    But looking at the discussion above and the ranker, I actually like that Archer C3150. The performance seems between R7800 and RT2600. But cheaper than both. Have you considered that one as well?
     
  10. Josh71

    Josh71 Occasional Visitor

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    I hadn’t considered the archer.

    I’ve actually just bought the Synology RT2600. The software seems very good, and the range is as pointed out in the SNB testing, among the best. However it still doesn’t reach as far as I had hoped. Too many solid walls to penetrate I guess. Facing up to limitations of Wi-if.
    I live the in a fairly standard Victoria semi was n the U.K. Router is in the front room downstairs next to phone point, it reaches into the middle room well, but gets a lot weaker in the back kitchen. Attic room is well out of reach unfortunately.

    Do people have suggestions as to the best way to extend wi-fi to these weaker/black spots in tandem with the Synology Router?
     
  11. thiggins

    thiggins Mr. Easy Staff Member

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    NETGEAR EX8000.
     
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  12. Ryan_C

    Ryan_C New Around Here

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    Maybe try to manually switch channel width to 40 or even 20Mhz for better distant. But your close range speed could be reduced in this case. You need to play with the setting. To be honest, if its brick or concrete wall, these's not too much you can do to improve the signal. A range extender might be your last resort.

    On the other hand, if you can easily buy/return routers. I would highly recommend you to try the Archer C3150 V2. This is a new version they released this year. There's a Youtube review indicating the throughput at distant is a lot better than V1, which I believe is the one tested by SNB.
     
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  13. Josh71

    Josh71 Occasional Visitor

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    Thanks for your suggestions. I shall look into these options. I’ll have a tinker with switching the channel width too
     
  14. Josh71

    Josh71 Occasional Visitor

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    Regarding the EX8000 WiFi extension, is there an advantage to this in place of using a second router in bridge mode? I don’t know much about the technicalities.
    To a novice it reads like the EX8000 is the right thing to use in terms of retaining a unified single WiFi network, would a router in bridge mode do the same thing?
     
  15. Josh71

    Josh71 Occasional Visitor

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    A couple of days in with the Synology Router, and I appear to be getting better stable reception around the house.

    Although my phone indicates 1 bar WiFi, it appears to be stable and pretty fast, where as on the first day I was constantly loosing the signal. Also getting 1 bar reception in rooms where there was none. Not sure what has brought the improvement on, but it’s very welcome
     

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