Best router option for strong parental controls


New Around Here

I'm not especially tech savvy and am trying to upgrade my home router with something that will give me access to parental controls (currently have nothing). Kids aren't a problem at the moment but are starting to hit the internet more as schooling progresses and I want to start filtering etc. Mostly at this stage just in case Google results start coming back with inappropriate results but going into next few years will probably need to be a bit more proactive blocking sites.

I've discovered the Disney backed 'Circle' offering, which is pushing me towards Netgear. However, there seems a lot of support for Asus in SNB (with the Merlin update). As such I'm not sure the Netgear hardware is the best option, but I'm not sure if ASUS + Merlin is harder to setup if the most of what I am looking for is parental control options.

I'd classify our internet usage as light to medium with about 10 devices connected (including TV streaming) in a two storey home.

I do some online sim racing so good gaming speeds would be beneficial.

Wasn't sure if I should post this in the hardware section but my query is more around usability of parental controls - any insight would be greatly appreciated.



Part of the Furniture
@Mattyran, welcome to the forums.

What type of parental controls are you looking for specifically? Filtering, time schedules, both?

Any RMerlin supported router offers both time and DNS filtering options. With amtm + scripts, you may have even more control too.

An RT-AX58U, an RT-AC86U, an RT-AX88U, or an RT-AX86U would be the best choices to make right now, with the latter giving a noticeably faster (lower latency) network experience.

What age are the children now? You may want to wait for this summer/fall when much better hardware is expected to land (Wi-Fi 6E). Even if you buy one of the suggested models above at that time, they should be much cheaper by then too.

I wouldn't worry too much about how it's 'more difficult' it is to set up an RMerlin router. Lots of help here to support you.


New Around Here
Hi L&LD,

Thank you for the welcome and your reply.

The more immediate need is filtering. But sounds like controls can develop as their sophistication does.

I'm sold on the RT-AX86U - currently have an ISP issued unit which is not working well, so I need to do something.

I've seen your notes on setup from other posts so can pick up those.

Appreciate the quick response!

Best regards,

Deleted member 51572

i've been experimenting with a Synology MR2200ac for a few weeks, the SRM (Synology Router Manager) interface is clean and easy to use, and includes comprehensive Parental Controls. i've attached a screen capture of the 'Safe Access' package that can be downloaded directly to the router from Synology servers. Parental Controls is built-in to Safe Access, but I don't require Parental Controls, so I uninstalled Safe Access from the router, therefore i cannot comment on how effective Parental Controls are on the Synology router, but it's there if you need it. i also attached a screencap of the intuitive SRM desktop, which runs in your browser.

Synology Safe Access.png
SRM desktop.png

edit: here is Synology promo-info and a video for their Safe Access Parental Controls.

one other thing, the SRM interface uses proper ENGLISH, and not horribly translated from Chinese or other foreign language, so that's a nice change from some other router brands which i shall not mention here.
Last edited by a moderator:

Deleted member 51572

i almost forgot, Synology MR2200ac supports DFS channels (Dynamic Frequency Selection) on both of its 5GHz radios, so if your network neighbourhood is crowded & noisy in the UNII3 spectrum (149 to 161), then you can enable DFS channels on the Synology router and it will switch to the under-utilized DFS channels instead - IF these channels are not already in use by nearby weather radar or the military. i happen to live across the street from a military base, and DFS channels are enabled and working great on the MR2200ac; it auto-selected channels 64 and 100.


New Around Here
I currently have an ISP supplied Netcomm NF18ACV which I've struggled with. As far as I can tell it only features a basic mac filter for block adult websites. I'm hoping for something more intuitive so my wife also can change things
Last edited:

Similar threads

Sign Up For SNBForums Daily Digest

Get an update of what's new every day delivered to your mailbox. Sign up here!