By Ki Grinsing
Generally people make some mistakes in selecting the wireless router. They are trying to find the best wireless router which is likely impossible because this is the moving target. Why? Because the wireless router is getting better and better with each new model introduction, but what you really need is the best wireless router that is best for your need, best for your environment.
Wifi network requirements
In building home wireless network or SOHO, besides a modem (Cable or DSL) a Wireless router is the main wireless devices needed to share broadband internet connection with many computers wirelessly. A modem is usually supplied by the ISP when you sign up for a broadband internet connection in home which is typically connected direct to a single computer via USB port or NIC Ethernet port. When you need to build a wireless network in home, what you need to purchase is the wireless router.
Which wireless router is the best for your need?
The word the best is relative regarding the wireless router. You need to consider many factors before you decide the wireless router you will purchase and the point should be the best for your need. You should consider how much you can afford, if the budget is limited then you really need to consider the basic requirements which are the best for your need. For example, if you just need to share the broadband internet connection with many computers in home – just for surfing the internet, off course you don’t need to purchase a high end wireless gaming router which is very expensive since it has many features which is specifically designed for gamers in mind.
Browse the online electronic stores or just go down to the gadget marketplace and you’ll be confusing which one should you purchase. In selecting the wireless router; some people make the mistake of trying to find the best wireless router. Of course, that’s a moving target since the wireless router get better and better with each new model introduction, but what you really need is the best wireless router that is best for your need.
Best Wireless router for Internet sharing
With the principle of the best wireless router that is best for your need, if you just want to build a wireless environment in home to share the broadband internet connection with many computers within the household, or just for the portability reason so you can browse the internet with your laptop everywhere within the house, you have many high performance wireless routers which are specifically designed for that purposes such as Medialink N150 wireless router – a best seller and affordable router with solid connection.
All-in-one modem gateway
Or if your ISP charges you for the modem rent monthly, you can consider purchasing the all-in-one DSL modem router for ADSL. Or if you subscribe cable services, you can consider of purchasing the DOCSIS 2.0 SurfBoard modem router or DOCSIS 3.0 Cable modem router by Netgear. They are compact devices which combine the function of modem, router / firewall, and the wireless access point in one box. Those routers would be suitable for your home wireless environment to share the internet, share the files and printer with several computers in the household. All the requirements you need for building a wireless environment in home with this type of modem-router, a single device for all.
Best Wireless Router for Gaming and Streaming HD Media
Unlike wireless router which is used for Internet sharing, wireless router for gaming and HD media streaming demands high performance, fast, and reliable networks. Wireless routers which are used for both Gaming and streaming HD media applications demand high-speed networks to deliver high bandwidth-sensitive applications. They should be capable to intelligently manage and automatically prioritize network traffic to better execute bandwidth-sensitive applications including VoIP and multimedia applications. This is typically the Quality of Service (QoS) feature which is embedded in the gaming or streaming routers.
Requirements for gaming environment
The following lists features you need for the best wireless router for gaming and HD media streaming.
1. Quality of Services
All applications with high intensive-bandwidth demand the router to capable of providing high quality of services. The wireless gaming routers must support high quality of services (QoS) technology. With QoS engine, the system can provide prioritization over the game application above other applications such as email, web browsing and files downloading. There are many routers support intelligent QoS engine to allow prioritization both wired and wireless Internet traffic to enable enhanced gaming experience.
2. High Speed Connection
HD media streaming and Gaming are high-intensive bandwidth applications that demand high-speed either wired or wireless connection.
Wireless n or ac
Typically mostly game consoles are embedded with 100Mbps Ethernet port. For wired connection to your local network, 100Mbps Ethernet port provides reliable high-speed connection. This would be different situation when the game console connects wirelessly (with the additions of wireless gaming console) to the network. You need high-speed wireless technology – the wireless –n standard. Your wireless gaming router should be powered by this wireless –n technology. Wireless –n was finally approved and ratified by the IEEE which is the fastest wireless technology that can provide the speed up to 300 Mbps and even higher.
Mostly wireless routers with wireless –n technology also adopt smart wireless antenna MIMO technology. Even though many manufacturers do not specifically label their products with MIMO technology, but they adopt the technology integrated into their own technology such as RangeMax by Netgear and Xtreme n by D-Link.
Combination of wireless –n and MIMO technologies will increase the system performance and longer distance coverage. Make sure that your wireless gaming router is powered by the draft 802.11n standard and MIMO antenna technology or other integrated technology.
But wireless N is not the latest wireless technology today, the Gigabit wireless speed has arrived with the latest 5th generation of the Wifi network (802.11ac) which can deliver blazing speeds of up to 1300Mbps – exceeding the wired gigabit speed (this is theoretical off course). Have a look at this 5G Wifi router – Netgear R6300 802.11ac router or Buffalo Wzr-D1800H wireless ac router.
3. DMZ or Port Forwarding Support
Online gaming activity means exposing the network into the wild internet. Exposing the computer into the wild internet is vulnerable to the internet threats. A secure system is needed to protect your internal network against any types of internet threats. Separating the internal network with the exposed host is the best way in protecting the network that can be done by creating a security boundary. Wireless gaming routers must support the DMZ feature or port forwarding feature which is used to create security boundary where you can place public resources here. Therefore you should find that the wireless gaming router supports DMZ or port forwarding feature.
4. Dual-band Support
Many wireless routers support dual-band feature both 2.4 GHz (for wireless b/g/n standards) and 5 GHz (for wireless –a standards) frequency bands either selectable or simultaneous. The benefit of having dual band is that you can play games (and other HD video streaming media) with 5 GHz frequency band which is less noisy compared to devices operates in 2.4 GHz band.
There are many sources of signal interference around us that operates in 2.4 GHz frequency band such as cordless phones, microwave oven, automatic garage door, etc that contribute to signal attenuator. It is therefore, the wireless gaming router should support dual-band.
Selecting the best wireless router for gaming is the same as building the best wireless network which demands the high-speed, the longer network coverage, reliable internet connection for streaming HD, the strongest wireless security, and quality of services.