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Best Router with DD-WRT 2020 | How to Choose a Router

Date of publication of the material 16.11.2019 Article views 66 Number of likes to article 0 Number of Comments

The vast majority of the user segment of network equipment are ordinary users who deploy the network within the boundaries of their home/apartment, or create small local networks (in the office, between residential and non-residential premises, etc.).

It is for this segment that router/router manufacturers, for the most part, adapt the release of their equipment, which was easy to handle and stable in operation.

Such factors can not affect the limitations of the router, including the limited access to most parameters by the user.

In other words, with "conventional models of routers" you can work only in the functionality and within the framework established by the manufacturer.

But it is quite logical that the possibilities, even of such conventional devices, are much wider than it is represented in the "stock" (default) firmware (software) of the router.

But, continuing the logical line, the advanced capabilities of network equipment are a functional element that requires certain skills and understanding of the structure of the device, so the limited functionality is fully justified.

And for those who are confident in their abilities and skills, the developers offer more "open" equipment that can be used with the DD-WRT software, which will open up almost unlimited functionality for the user.

And about the 7 best DD-WRT devices of this segment and will be discussed in this article.

What is DD-WRT

To begin with, it is worth mentioning in a nutshell the principles of the DD-WRT software.

So, "DD-WRT" is a firmware, which is an operating system built on the basis of the Linux OS kernel.

As mentioned above, such software is functionally significantly different from the "stock" firmware, even if we take into account only the components built by default.

In addition to the functional part, "DD-WRT" is characterized by a high degree of statistical information, which allows you to track not only the consumed traffic, but also the degree of load that takes over the components of the device (processor, memory, etc.).

Also, for example, some users are very successful in using routers with this firmware as a media server with a wide range of features.

But it should be repeated, such "openness" of the network interface (the abundance of settings) entails the presence of an understanding of how it can be applied. Roughly speaking, you need to understand which "doors" and when to open, and which should not be opened.

Top 7 best DD-WRT Routers

So we came to the main topic of this article – a selection of 7 routers that demonstrate an excellent price / quality ratio, and most importantly can be considered for professionals and network deployment for ordinary users, which certainly affects their cost, as the use of "DD-WRT" on models with a price of 3000-5000 rubles is simply impractical.

P/S the order of consideration of devices is purely financial in nature (from less to more), and does not carry the purpose to distribute devices to places. Presented models from different price categories and different functional orientation.

* the price is in the range, taking into account the average market price

"TP-Link Archer A7"

"Archer A7" - this is quite an old "workhorse", which has proven itself in the construction of a small home network, using dual-band wireless network mode and with support for 802.11 ac.

Externally, this model corresponds to the line of the brand "TP-Link" - it is a strict black color (or white) with a stylish" flattened " body and three antennas.

This model works on Qualcomm QCA9563 processor with a frequency of 750 MHz, and in conjunction with Gigabit ports Atheros AR8327N, memory 128/128 MB (FLASH/RAM), "Archer A7" is able to surprise with its functionality and speed.

Taking into account the low cost and limited resources, we can call "TP-Link Archer A7" a worthy option for those who are looking for accessibility, ease of configuration and the ability to work with two wireless bands.

You can also pay attention to the updated version of "A9" with increased maximum bandwidth and support for MU-MIMO.

Pluses:

+ Affordable price;

+ Small size;

+ Support 5GHz;

+ Intuitive interface;

+ Gigabit port.

Minuses:

- Small signal coverage area;

- Limited CPU resources;

- No USB 3.0 port.

"Netgear Nighthawk R7000"

Despite the fact that the "Night hawk", namely in honor of this American aircraft (F-117) was named this model, is an active market participant in this segment is not the first year, the quality of its work is not in doubt.

The design and style speak for themselves – it really looks very impressive, strictly and without unnecessary details.

The "R700" runs on a dual-core Broadcom BCM4709A0 processor, which has enough resources to perform most complex tasks, including the active operation of external devices, for example, an external hard drive connected to a USB port (there is one 2.0 port and one 3.0).

NETGEAR network equipment has long been considered one of the best in the world market, which is also confirmed by the model "Nighthawk R7000".

Pluses:

+ Supports 802.11 AC and dual-band operation;

+ Availability of three powerful antennas;

+ Sufficiently powerful dual-core processor;

+ Reasonable price;

+ Stable operation;

+ High speed and throughput.

Minuses:

- Complexity of the interface.

Beautiful model, beautiful in everything.

"Netgear R7800"

This is a newer and more advanced model, which significantly increases the already high level of quality of its older counterpart "R7000".

"R7800" is a router with a maximum bandwidth of 2600 Mbit / s, equipped with a more powerful dual-core processor with a frequency of 1.7 GHz and 512 MB of RAM, which allows you to perform the most complex tasks without a serious load on the resources of the device.

Imagine all the advantages of the previous version and add to them:

Pluses:

+ Four powerful antennas;

+ 2 USB 3.0 ports;

+ Own free URL for personal FTP server;

+ Directional beam technology "Beamforming+".

Minuses:

- There are comments in the form of small loopholes in the security system.

Firmware "DD-WRT" on Board + "Netgear R7800" can be one of the best collaborations in the market of network equipment for non-professional (non-corporate use/non-industrial) use.

"Linksys WRT1200AC"

Products of the company "Linksys" - is one of the clear leaders in the market of network equipment with firmware "DD-WRT" and the main old-timers in this segment, as it is for their routers at the time and developed for the first time considered software.

"WRT1200AC" is the type of router that you will wish to leave in the most prominent place, as the design with a combination of black and bright blue in the foreground will attract the eyes, and will do it absolutely deserved.

But not only in external beauty charm of this model.

Pluses:

+ 256MB Flash memory;

+ 512 MB RAM;

+ 1.8 GHz dual-core processor;

+ Support of channels with a frequency of 160 MHz;

+ MU-MIMO support;

+ High speed operation;

+ Bandwidth of 1287 Mbps;

 The presence of the smartphone application;

+ Stable operation.

Minuses:

- Relatively high cost;

- Limitations of the stock firmware.

"ASUS RT-AC3100"

The products of the company "Asus" can be treated in different ways, but you cannot deny the high quality of the devices produced under this brand, including this fact applies to network equipment.

"AC3100" is a model positioning itself as an ideal router for online gaming.

This is achieved through the use Of nitroqam technology (1024-QAM), which allows you to significantly increase the speed of data transmission in the working bands 2.4 and 5 Ghz, which will be appreciated by everyone who is engaged in the publication of content on the Internet (streaming), as well as those who like to pass the time in online games.

In addition, it is worth noting the implemented function "Adaptive QoS", for quick and easy configuration of traffic priority, for example, activation of the "Gamer Solo" mode allocates the entire bandwidth to games, which best affects the performance of the gameplay.

"AC1300" works with a powerful dual-core processor with a clock speed of 1.4 GHz, which together with RAM 512 MB allows you to carry out most of the complex processes that are inherent in the gaming segment.

Pluses:

+ Data transfer rate up to 3100 Mbps;

+ NitroQAM technology support;

+ Support for MU-MIMO technology;

+ Availability of 4 powerful antennas;

+ Support for Link Aggregation technology (channel aggregation);

+ Support aiprotection technology;

+ Stable operation;

+ Attractive design.

Minuses:

- High enough cost;

- Frequent updates stock firmware (for someone plus, for someone minus).

"Linksys WRT-3200ACM"

"WRT-3200ACM" is an improved version of the router already loved by many of the previous model, made in the same style, but offering an order of magnitude better functionality and technical capabilities.

In the market of network equipment, this model is not one-year-old, but there are no corresponding analogues.

"3200ACM" offers its users a powerful dual-core processor with a frequency of 1.8 GHz, flash memory 256MB and 512 MB of RAM. This combination and advanced cooling system allows you to forget about performance problems and overheating of the router under severe loads.

All owners of the router of this model appreciated the stability of the "3200ASM", that when using a wired connection, that when using two bands of a wireless network.

Quality, high speed, beautiful design and stability – do you need anything else?

Pluses:

+ Data transfer rate up to 3200mbps;

+ High performance;

+ Support for "Tri-Stream 160" technology (increased bandwidth);

+ Support for MU-MIMO technology;

+ Availability of ESATA port;

+ The presence of 4 powerful antennas to focus the signal.

Minuses:

- High cost;

- Difficulty setting (optional).

"ASUS RT-AC5300"

"AC5300" is a real "monster" in the good sense of the term.

Very unusual and attractive design, which combines the usual red and black colors. Along the perimeter there are eight removable powerful antennas, which are designed to cover a huge area with a wireless signal, despite possible obstacles.

"AS5300" took all the best from "AS3100" and doubled all the advantages of previous versions. Currently, without too much pathos-this is one of the best routers on the market, which is worth paying attention to both ordinary users and those who want to unleash the full potential with the firmware "DD-WRT".

Powerful Quad-core Broadcom BCM4709C0 processor, simultaneous operation with three modes 2.4 GHz+5GHz+5GHz with a total bandwidth of 5334 Mbps.

"ASUS RT-AC5300" is a router that can meet any user needs.

Pluses:

+ Tremendous performance and speed;

+ Three modes of operation of the wireless network (three frequency range);

+ Eight powerful antennas with airadar beam-forming technology;

+ "Broadcom NitroQAM" technology support»;

+ Aiprotection technology with Trend Micro module;

+ Support for "Tri-Band Smart Connect" smart connection technology»;

And much much more.

Minuses:

- High cost (but it justifies itself);

- Difficulty setting (optional on stock firmware).

How to Choose a Router

Of course, every user wants to use only the best equipment and will get the highest speeds. But the complexity of the choice is that even with the firmware "DD-WRT" you will not be able to unleash the full potential of a powerful router, if your network can not provide the appropriate resources. In other words, there is no point in purchasing "AC5300" if the speed of your connection is 1-5 MB, etc.

Also, it is worth considering that the firmware "DD-WRT" is set by the user, but is done so at your own risk, since such willfulness in most cases will void any warranty from the seller.

Therefore, if you are not sure of your abilities, you can pay attention to these same models, but already distributed with the installed firmware "DD-WRT". For the most part, their cost is little more than "stock models", but the result is worth it.

Summarizing all the above material, when choosing a router, pay attention to the following factors:

  • "Specifications" - should meet your maximum requests with a small margin;
  • "Functionality" - the presence of many features will maximize the individualization of network deployment;
  • "Ranges" - the availability of support work in range 5GHz this already the need, not simply free "feature";
  • "Cost" - the cost should correspond not only to your requests, but also to the offered functionality.

 It is necessary to find a balance between the resources of the network, the router and the traffic that will be consumed by the devices – this is exactly the key needed to unlock the potential of all equipment.

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