Best Gaming Router Advice

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clarkenuttal

New Around Here
Can someone please advise me, I am not very well versed with this topic hence the question.

So I am looking to buy a router to work with 500mb fibre optic. My main priority is console gaming to have no lag followed by streaming. Total devices simultaneously connected and in the house and will be around 15-20 but only max of 2 consoles and 3 streaming devices to be connected at the same time rest being things like printers, Alexa and phones etc.

Since AX is the new upcoming WiFi 6 the Router preference will be a WiFi 6 router.an The budget is not an issue and I’ve looked at ASUS GT-AX11000 and it is a strong contender based in reviews.
 

Tech9

Very Senior Member
RT-AX86U is the current popular router of choice. It has the same CPU/RAM as GT-AX11000, 2.5Gb port, dual-band (you don't need tri-band with 20 devices), newer model, with smaller footprint and cheaper. Gaming with no lag depends on what servers you connect to. The router can't fix latency outside of your network. Gaming consoles don't require much bandwidth. 3 streaming devices is not a problem, even with 4K streams.
 

clarkenuttal

New Around Here
RT-AX86U is the current popular router of choice. It has the same CPU/RAM as GT-AX11000, 2.5Gb port, dual-band (you don't need tri-band with 20 devices), newer model, with smaller footprint and cheaper. Gaming with no lag depends on what servers you connect to. The router can't fix latency outside of your network. Gaming consoles don't require much bandwidth. 3 streaming devices is not a problem, even with 4K streams.
I read about RT-AX86U and it seems to be medium ranged router with no extra gaming specific boosts compared to those offered by gaming specific routers such as WTFast, geofencing, heat map and automatic prioritising of gaming data. Not sure if that’s helpful for console gaming as you said about latency outside network but I am under impression that these extra features on some gaming dedicated routers let you choose least latency servers by taking shortest distance to routers to reduce packet losses, ping and latency.
But again I am not an expert and this is only based on whatever limited reading I have done
 

degrub

Very Senior Member
If the consoles can be hardwired (ethernet) , that has been the solution with the least issues for gaming.
 

Tech9

Very Senior Member
WTFast, geofencing, heat map and automatic prioritising of gaming data.

A lot of marketing stuff. I don't use an AX86U, but I see the following available on older AC86U:

Untitled_g1.png


Untitled_g2.png


Is this what you are looking for? AX86U owners to confirm if it's available. I'm pretty sure it is.
 

Tech9

Very Senior Member
That's available on the first HND Asus router - RT-AC86U. I'm sure RT-AX86U has it as well. Wait for someone to confirm. A little secret: Game Device Prioritizing enables QoS, Open NAT is Port Forwarding, WTFast is some VPN network some say doesn't work well. That's why I called it marketing stuff.
 

clarkenuttal

New Around Here
That's available on the first HND Asus router - RT-AC86U. I'm sure RT-AX86U has it as well. Wait for someone to confirm. A little secret: Game Device Prioritizing enables QoS, Open NAT is Port Forwarding, WTFast is some VPN network some say doesn't work well. That's why I called it marketing stuff.
Really appreciate this advice!!! You able to suggest any tri-band routers? Is it worth upgrading to GT-AXE11000 instead then with 6G to future proof or is that marketing gimmick as well?
 

BreakingDad

Senior Member
A lot of marketing stuff. I don't use an AX86U, but I see the following available on older AC86U:

View attachment 33767

View attachment 33768

Is this what you are looking for? AX86U owners to confirm if it's available. I'm pretty sure it is.
Everything except wtfast gpn on ax86u. If you want all the geofencing gimmicks you would be better off looking at netgear nighthawk range. I did, but I decided the AX86u is a better router. Think I was right.
 

BreakingDad

Senior Member
Strange, AC86U has it.
Edit: Some say it works, others it doesn't. I don't know, not a gamer.
I can tell you that we are hardcore gamers in this house and the ax86u does the job. I get no spikes with flexqos no matter what anyone is doing.
 

clarkenuttal

New Around Here
Everything except wtfast gpn on ax86u. If you want all the geofencing gimmicks you would be better off looking at netgear nighthawk range. I did, but I decided the AX86u is a better router. Think I was right.
Appreciate that!! So AX86u is everything as GT-AX11000 minus WTFast? I would definitely look up on this. Once again appreciate the words of wisdom
 

BreakingDad

Senior Member
Appreciate that!! So AX86u is everything as GT-AX11000 minus WTFast? I would definitely look up on this. Once again appreciate the words of wisdom
Not quite, maybe gui wise.

GT has triband, 5 more aerials, is bigger, and more expensive and is hellishly ugly
AX86U has DNS Relay, GT doesn't
AX86U is beautiful, I sleep with mine.
 

BreakingDad

Senior Member
Love your reply “I sleep with mine” lol I will definitely look it up
 

BreakingDad

Senior Member

Trip

Very Senior Member
@clarkenuttal - Here's your answer, with backing info and context.

Even with 500Mb fiber and only a handful of network hosts, to ensure reasonably top-level gaming performance at all times, you'll need to apply quality-of-service (QoS), and the right kind of QoS at that. This is to ensure that the gaming traffic doesn't get drowned out of bandwidth and/or suffer from any potetial bufferbloat if/when internet may be saturated or even approaching saturation (which could still happen, even on 500Mb fiber, especially if you have a meager upload speed).

Normally the best "easy button" answer for the average Joe would be an Eero gen2 (AC-class) base station, with "Optimize for Conferencing & Gaming" enabled in Eero Labs on the phone app (literally just a toggle button, that's it, and you're done). However, Eero auto-disables SQM if it senses 500Mb or faster internet, which is what you have. So, to get something actually usable at that speed, I, like several others here, recommend a Merlin-compatible Asus all-in-one with the highest CPU clock speed possible (an AX68U, AX86U or AX88U), with SQM configured to use either the included fq_codel queueing discpline, or CAKEQoS-Merlin, then optionally followed by traditional QoS if needed. That will give you the right kind of traffic smoothing as well as the highest chance of getting all of your 500Mb fiber.

Beyond that, to pursue QoS "perfection", you'd have to get even more technical, by loading and configuring OpenWRT on more open-source-friendly hardware, such as Qualcomm or Marvell all-in-ones (Netgear R7800, Linksys WRT1900ACS, etc.) or a wired-only PC box (for max throughput). While doing so could likely squeeze out another 5-20% even better gaming behavior at certain times, the effort required would probably be more trouble than it's worth, at least for a basic home user. I still wanted to at least mention it, though.

So, to recap, I support the choice of a Merlin-compatible Asus all-in-one, albeit there are more "perfect" options out there, but not without undue amounts of skill to configure.

Hope that helps.
 
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