There are a few things to consider when purchasing a Wi-Fi router and price is certainly one of them. But, just because you’re on a budget doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice quality or features. In fact, there are plenty of great Wi-Fi routers available for under $500.
To help you narrow down your choices, we’ve compiled a list of the best Wi-Fi routers under $500 based on our own extensive research. We’ve looked at everything from raw performance to features and ease of use. So, no matter what your needs are, you’re sure to find the perfect router for your home or office right here. Here are our top six routers under $500.
- Best Overall: Netgear Nighthawk X10
- Best for Gamers: TP-Link Archer AX11000
- Best for Long Range: Asus ZenWiFi AX6600
- Best Speed: Asus Rapture GT-AX11000
- Best Budget Option: TP-Link Archer C7
- Best Features: Asus RT-AC5300
Best Overall: Netgear Nighthawk X10
- Fast WIFI Performance: Get up to 2500 sq ft wireless coverage with AD7200 speed (Tri-band up to 800 + 1733 + 4600 Mbps - for 60Ghz band devices)
- Recommended Up to 45 Devised: Reliably stream videos, play games, surf the internet, and connect smart home devices
- WIRED ETHERNET PORTS: Plug in computers, game consoles, streaming players, and other nearby wired devices with 6 x 1 Gigabit Ethernet ports, and 1 x 10G SFP+ port.
- Loaded with Advanced Technology: Designed with a 1.7GHz quad-core processor, 4 amplified antennas, Beamforming+, MU-MIMO, Dynamic QoS, Amazon Alexa Voice Controls, and more
- USB Connections; Share a storage drive and printer with any connected device, and create a personal cloud storage to access from anywhere, using the 2 x 3.0 USB ports
If you’re looking for a top-of-the-line router that won’t break the bank, the Netgear Nighthawk X10 is a great option. This powerful router offers speeds of up to 7.2Gbps, making it one of the fastest on the market.
The Netgear Nighthawk X10 is a high-performance router that is designed for power users. It has a quad-core 1.7 GHz processor, seven gigabit Ethernet ports, and two USB 3.0 ports. The Nighthawk X10 also supports 802.11ac and 802.11 ad Wi-Fi and can achieve speeds of up to 7200 Mbps.
One of the most impressive features of the Nighthawk X10 is its MU-MIMO support, which allows it to simultaneously stream data to multiple devices at once. This makes it an ideal router for homes with multiple users who are all using Wi-Fi-connected devices. It’s also packed with features like MU-MIMO technology and Beamforming+, which help to optimize your network and improve performance.
The Nighthawk X10 also has a powerful amplifier and four external antennas for extended range and coverage. The router has an app for easy setup and network monitoring. Overall, the Netgear Nighthawk X10 is a top-of-the-line router that offers excellent performance, features, and range. If you are looking for a high-powered router that can handle multiple users and streaming activities, then the Nighthawk X10 is an excellent option.
Check out the Netgear Nighthawk X10 on Amazon.
Best for Gamers: TP-Link Archer AX11000
If you’re looking for the best gaming router under $500 in terms of features, the TP-Link Archer AX11000 is a great option. It’s a tri-band router that can reach speeds of up to 11,000 Mbps, and it comes with plenty of features to keep your network safe and efficient.
The TP-Link Archer AX11000 is a powerful and feature-rich Wi-Fi 6 router that offers great speeds and excellent coverage. The router has a 1.8 GHz quad-core CPU for handling demanding tasks effectively. It offers nine Ethernet ports, two USB 3.0 ports, and eight external antennas.
One of the most notable features of the Archer AX11000 is its MU-MIMO technology, which allows it to handle multiple devices at once without slowing down your connection. The Archer AX11000 supports OFDMA technology for improved performance with multiple devices. It also includes TP-Link’s HomeCare security features, which provide robust protection against malware and hackers.
The Archer AX11000 with a number of features that make it ideal for gaming and streaming. For example, the router includes Game Accelerator technology that reduces latency and improves performance when gaming. It also has a built-in QoS engine that automatically optimizes your network for streaming video or music. Overall, the Archer AX11000 is an excellent choice for those who need the very best performance from their Wi-Fi 6 router.
Check out the TP-Link Archer AX11000 on Amazon.
Best Range: Asus ZenWiFi AX6600
- Maximum range of 5,500 square feet
- Total wireless speed of 6,600Mbps
- OFDMA and MU-MIMO ZenWiFi AX for more efficient and faster transmissions
- 3-step setup and easy management with ASUS Router App
- Lifetime free network security from Trend Micro
Asus ZenWiFi AX6600 is the best mesh system under $500 for range. It’s a great choice for those who need excellent coverage and performance without spending a lot of money. This mesh system covers up to 5,500 sq. ft.
The Asus ZenWiFi AX6600 is a high-end mesh Wi-Fi system that offers excellent performance and features. It’s a great choice for gamers and 4K video streaming enthusiasts. The system includes two tri-band 802.11ax routers and two tri-band range extenders. The routers have a maximum theoretical throughput of 6,600 Mbps. The ZenWiFi AX6600 supports MU-MIMO and beamforming technologies for optimal performance. The routers also have built-in support for the Asus AiProtection Pro security suite. This system also works perfectly with Alexa.
Asus ZenWiFi AX6600 is easy to set up and use, and it comes with a comprehensive mobile app that makes it even easier to manage your network. If you’re looking for the best mesh router under $500, the Asus ZenWiFi AX6600 is a clear choice.
Check out the Asus ZenWiFi AX6600 on Amazon.
Best Speed: Asus Rapture GT-AX11000
- Tri-band 10 Gigabit
- 1.8 GHz quad-core CPU
- Compatible with ASUS AiMesh Wi-Fi
- 256MB flash memory and 1GB RAM
- Triple-level game acceleration facilitates game traffic
Asus Rapture GT-AX11000 is the best router you can buy for under $500. It’s fast, efficient, and able to handle a large number of devices without breaking a sweat. Whether you’re gaming, streaming, or working from home, this router will keep your connections strong and stable.
Asus ROG Rapture GT-AX11000 supports the new 802.11ax standard, which is designed for improved performance in crowded networks. The router has a 1.8GHz quad-core processor and 1GB DDR3 SDRAM. It also supports OFDMA, MU-MIMO, and beamforming technologies for better performance with multiple devices.
It has eight external antennas for maximum range, and it can act as a NAS server with two USB 3.1 Gen 1 ports. Asus has also included some gaming-specific features in the Rapture GT-AX11000, including Game Boost, Game Radar, ROG_First, WTFast, and OpenNAT. These features and its speed makes the GT-AX11000 perfect for gamers.
The GT-AX11000 has security features such as WPA3, guest network encryption, and a robust firewall. Plus, it’s packed with features like built-in malware protection and parental controls. Overall, the Asus Rapture GT-AX11000 is an excellent choice for anyone who needs a top-of-the-line router. It offers exceptional speed and range, along with robust security features, making it a great option for any home or small business.
Check out the Asus Rapture GT-AX11000 on Amazon.
Best Budget Option: TP-Link Archer C7
The TP-Link Archer C7 is a powerful and feature-rich wireless router that is perfect for home and small office use. It offers dual-band 802.11ac support, four Gigabit Ethernet ports, a USB 2.0 port for connecting external storage or a printer, and a host of other features.
The Archer C7 is powered by a Qualcomm CPU and has 128MB of RAM. It offers two frequency bands — a 2.4 GHz band and a 5 GHz band, both delivering speeds up to 1.7 Gbps. The router also supports beamforming, which helps to improve range and performance.
In terms of security, this router supports two VPN protocols — OpenVPN and PPTP for protecting your data online. It also includes an SPI firewall, Guest Network, and supports WPA/WPA2 encryption. Overall, the TP-Link Archer C7 is a great choice for those looking for a high-performance wireless router.
Check out the TP-Link Archer C7 on Amazon.
Best for Features: Asus RT-AC5300
- Tri-band (Dual 5GHz, single 2; 4GHz) with the latest 802 11AC 4x4 technology for maximum throughput (5334 Mbps) and coverage (up to 5,000 square feet)
- Mu Memo Technology enables multiple compatible clients to connect at each client’s respective maximum speed and supports every operating System, including Windows, macOS, and Linux
- Built-in ACCESS to gamers' private network (GPN) of route-optimized servers ensures low, stable ping times for gaming
- Printer Server with multifunctional printer support (Windows only)
- Protection powered by Trend Micro provides multi-stage protection from vulnerability detection to protecting sensitive data
- ASUS Smart Connect delivers consistent bandwidth by dynamically switching devices between 2, 4, and 5 GHz bands based on speed, load, and signal strength
- Output: 19 Volt with max; 3.42 A current
Asus RT-AC5300 is the best router under $500 in terms of features. It’s a tri-band router that can provide speeds up to 5,300Mbps, making it ideal for gaming and 4K video streaming. The router has eight external antennas and offers a range of 5,000 sq. ft., which makes it ideal for large homes and people with multiple devices.
It also has MU-MIMO technology for improved performance when multiple devices are connected, and it’s easy to set up thanks to the Asus Router app. The Asus RT-AC5300 has advanced features such as Adaptive QoS (Quality of Service), Bandwidth Monitor, Traffic Monitor, Guest Network, Airtime Fairness, and beamforming.
The RT-AC5300 also supports VPN. The best part is that it is compatible with three VPN protocols — L2TP, OpenVPN, and PPTP. This means it is compatible with most of the VPN services out there.
Plus, the AiProtection security system keeps your network safe from online threats. If you’re looking for a top-of-the-line router with advanced features, the Asus RT-AC5300 is the one for you.
Check out the Asus RT-AC5300 on Amazon.
How to Pick the Best Wi-Fi Router Under $500
When it comes to finding the best Wi-Fi router under $500, there are a few things you’ll want to keep in mind. Some of them include:
When it comes to Wi-Fi, speed is everything. If you’re looking for the best Wi-Fi router under $500, you’ll want to make sure that you pick one that can deliver fast speeds.
A fast Wi-Fi router will be able to provide you with a better and more stable internet connection, which is essential for online gaming, streaming movies or TV shows, and downloading files.
There are a few things that you’ll want to keep in mind when you’re shopping for a fast Wi-Fi router. First, you’ll want to make sure that the router supports the latest 802.11ax wireless standard. You should also check the specs to see what speeds it supports. You can usually find this information on the manufacturer’s website or on the product page when shopping online.
If you’re looking for a good Wi-Fi router under $500, you should consider the range of the router. The range is the maximum distance that the router can cover. If you have a large home, you’ll need a router with a good range so that you can get a good signal in every room.
There are a few things that affect the range of a Wi-Fi router. The first is the frequency band. The 2.4 GHz band has a longer range than the 5 GHz band. However, it isn’t as efficient as the 5.4 GHz band. So, if you want a good range, you should look for a router that supports both bands.
Another thing that affects range is the transmit power. The higher the transmit power, the greater the range. However, keep in mind that high transmit power can also lead to interference with other devices.
Finally, the antenna type can also affect range. External antennas usually have a better range than internal antennas. So, if you want a good range, you should look for a router with external antennas.
Advanced features are among the factors to consider in order to get the best Wi-Fi Router Under $500. Some of the most important features to look for are:
MU-MIMO (Multi-User, Multiple Input, Multiple Output) is a technology that allows multiple devices to communicate with a router at the same time. This is opposed to the traditional Single User, Single Input, Single Output (SU-SISO) technology, which can only communicate with one device at a time.
MU-MIMO can be beneficial if you have a lot of devices that are constantly vying for a Wi-Fi connection. It can help to improve communication speeds and prevent lag.
Beamforming is a technology that helps direct the Wi-Fi signal to where it is needed most. This can be especially helpful if you have a large home or office and need to ensure that the signal reaches all areas. Beamforming can also help reduce interference from other devices, such as Bluetooth devices or microwaves.
If you are looking for a router that will give you the best possible performance, then make sure to look for one that offers beamforming technology.
If you’re looking for the best Wi-Fi router under $500, one of the features you’ll want to consider is guest networking. Guest networking allows you to create a separate network for guests, which can be useful if you’re worried about security or bandwidth issues.
It’s also just a good way to keep your guests from accessing your personal data.
When it comes to choosing the best Wi-Fi router under $500, there are a number of factors to consider. One important factor is parental control. There are a number of different parental control features that can be found on Wi-Fi routers. These can include the ability to block certain websites, limit internet usage times, and even monitor internet usage. Parental controls can be a great way to help keep your children safe online and prevent your employees from accessing non-work-related sites.
Quality of Service (QoS)
QoS is a feature that allows you to prioritize certain types of traffic on your network. For example, you can give priority to gaming traffic over general web browsing traffic. This can be especially useful if you have multiple devices competing for bandwidth on your network.
When choosing a Wi-Fi router, security is one of the most important factors to consider. A good Wi-Fi router can help to protect your devices and data from hackers and other online threats. There are a number of different security features to look for when choosing a Wi-Fi router.
One important feature is encryption. Encryption helps to protect your data as it travels between your devices and the router. Look for a router that supports WPA3 encryption, as this is the most secure form of encryption currently available.
Another important security feature to look for is a firewall. A firewall can help to block unwanted traffic from reaching your devices. Some routers come with built-in firewalls, while others require you to install third-party software. Either way, make sure that your chosen router has some form of firewall protection.
Finally, check if the router supports VPN (Virtual Private Network). A VPN can help to encrypt all of the traffic passing through your router, providing an extra layer of security.
Tri-band support is one of the factors to consider when choosing a Wi-Fi router. A tri-band router supports three wireless networks (two 5 GHz and one 2.4 GHz), which can provide greater speed and capacity than a dual-band router, making them ideal for large homes or offices. In addition, tri-band routers can support more devices and users simultaneously without experiencing any slowdown in speed or performance.
Ethernet ports are one of the most important aspects of a Wi-Fi router. They provide a physical connection between the router and your computer or other devices. The number of Ethernet ports on a router determines how many devices can be connected to the router at one time. Most routers have four Ethernet ports, but some have more or less.
If you have a lot of devices that need to be connected to the internet, you’ll need a router with more than four Ethernet ports. If you only have a few devices, you can get by with a router that has fewer than four Ethernet ports. Just keep in mind that you won’t be able to connect as many devices at one time if you go with a router that has fewer ports.
Ease of Use
When it comes to choosing a router, one of the most important factors to consider is the router’s ease of use. After all, you want a router that is easy to set up and configure so that you can get online as quickly and easily as possible.
There are a few things to look for when considering ease of use. First, make sure that the router has clear instructions for setting it up. Many routers come with a setup wizard that will walk you through the process step-by-step.
Another thing to look for is whether or not the router comes with a web-based interface. This can be very helpful for configuring your router because it allows you to do everything from your computer instead of having to fiddle with settings on the router itself.
Finally, make sure that the router has good customer support in case you have any problems with it. A lot of companies offer 24/7 phone support so that you can always get help if you need it.
When it comes to buying a Wi-Fi router under $500, compatibility is one of the key factors to keep in mind. Not all routers are compatible with all devices and networks, so it’s important to check that your chosen router is compatible with your specific devices and network setup. Otherwise you may find that you’re unable to get online or that your connection is slow and unreliable.
There are a few different things to consider when it comes to compatibility. First, check that the router is compatible with your devices – both in terms of hardware and software. Most routers will work with any device that has a Wi-Fi adapter, but some older or less common devices may not be compatible. Second, check that the router is compatible with your network setup.
If you have a complex network with multiple devices and subnets, you’ll need a router that can handle this type of setup. Finally, check for any other special requirements – such as needing a specific firmware version or having certain features disabled.
If you’re not sure whether a particular router is compatible with your devices and network, it’s always best to consult with the manufacturer or retailer before making a purchase. This way you can be sure that you’re getting a router that will work well for your needs.
What to Know Before Buying a Wi-Fi Router Under $500
If you’re looking to buy a Wi-Fi router on a budget, there are a few things you should keep in mind. First, consider the size of your home or office. A smaller space will need a less powerful router, while a larger one will need a more powerful router with a long range.
Also, you should consider what you’ll be using the router for. If you have a lot of devices that need to connect to the internet or if you do a lot of online gaming, you’ll want a router that can handle multiple connections and has good speed.
Additionally, think about the number of devices that will be connected to the router. The more devices you have, the higher the bandwidth you’ll need. Finally, read online reviews before making your purchase. Reviews can give you insight into a router’s range, speed, reliability, and customer support. With this information in hand, you’ll be able to find the best Wi-Fi router under $500 for your home network needs.
Using a Wi-Fi Router Under $500: What It’s Like
Well, first of all, you can expect to get a lot of features for your money. Many of the routers in this price range come packed with features such as MU-MIMO support, beamforming, and more. Plus, you’ll also find that most of the routers in this price range offer great performance. In other words, you can expect to get a lot of bang for your buck if you opt for a Wi-Fi router that costs less than $500.
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