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How to choose a budget Wi-Fi Router?

How to choose a budget Wi-Fi Router? What models are the best in terms of price and quality? Does it make sense to overpay for the brand? What the signal power is enough and what other settings should pay attention to? What is better: Wi-Fi router with internal or external antennas and how to install right it in your home or flat? The answers to these and other questions in the article below, and the best budget Wi-Fi routers of this year - at the end of it.

The choice of the manufacturer
All modern Wi-Fi routers are highly integrated devices. It is thought that they are reliable and broke quite rarely. Recently, the Taiwan company which makes D-link and other good-quality goods, was a monopolist on the market, but several years ago, the Chinese TP-Link had dislodged it, which makes even better goods by all features. The solid ZyXEL is very popular, it's reliable, but unreasonably expensive.The same situation is with Asus routers, which are popular now. To gain the market, beginners try to lower the price on their devices, but without sacrificing quality to do it below the level of the TP-Link is impossible.
So what manufacturer to choose? The survey is available Internet providers and my own experience agreed that for flats, houses or small office perfect ratio of price and quality are 2 mass models of TP-Link, review on which are listed at the end of the this post; fans of the classics can choose D-Link, but experimenting with little-known or unknown manufacturers to save 2-5 $, at least is unwise.
It must be noted that the most common cause of failure of any router is a stroke of lightning (this happens most often in the private sector in May-June), so it is advisable to put a lightning protection (WAN port) at the input. To buy expensive models makes no sense, because in most cases, a regular cheap surge protector without earth ground is able to cope with 98% of other discharges and the direct impact of the storm still will not leave a chance to survive even to a very cool router. By the way, for the same reason (risk of kick thunderstorms) preferably all clients (especially expensive SmartTV, PCs and laptops) to connect it wirelessly, as in the case of lightning strike or strong interference on the input WAN port you run the risk of losing only a cheap router, but not all your connected equipment..

Define with Wi-Fi router characteristics
1. Customer primarily pays attention to the speed connection, although this is a very deceptive feature. In theory, the maximum speed of the budget Wi-Fi routers is 150 Mbps (megabits per second), at the same time, just a few providers can offer just 50 Mbps, so it becomes clear that the alluring phrases like "up to 300 Mbps" or even "up to 1300 Mbps", in fact, means that when you work in the Internet the speed difference between the expensive and cheap Wi-Fi routers will not differ a lot.
2. Radius of action. It seems to be easy, because, as usual, to specify the distance outside and inside the premises, everything is clear and understandable. But these values are very relative, especially indoors, as a couple of good reinforced concrete walls will negate the signal of even the most powerful router, so really important are the two following characteristics.
3. The transmitter power - the name speaks for itself and it is really important. Most of the budget routers have a transmit power of about 17 dBm, or even less, which is usually enough to more or less confidently "break" in only 2 walls. It worth noting, that some Wi-Fi routers have the technical ability to operate at much higher power (typically up to 27 dBm, 500 mW), so they are in accordance with local regulations artificially reduce its capacity.
4. Antenna gain power confuses many users into believing, as in fact, antenna is a passive device and does not amplify anything themselves, they can more narrowly direct signal. For example, the higher the antenna gain, the more power the transmitter out to the sides, and the less energy transmitter goes up and down. Thus, a more powerful antenna is not a universal solution, because it allows you much more "punch" in the signal, but the "taking" of its top and bottom.
5. The number and types of antennas. When you use multiple antennas, their energy does not stack, so it will not allow you to "punch" more the number of walls, but only make the connection more stable. The difference in coverage of routers with one antenna and two antennas is significant, but the difference between 2 and 3 antennas is almost non-existent, the last one is useful only when the signal must be passed between floors. To cover as much room as possible one-story house or apartment, you need to install the antenna vertically or at a slight angle relative to one another. Built-in antennas have a little gain, so the can spread the signal is uniformly in all directions and can be extremely helpful in smaller spaces. It is recommended to buy a wifi router with 2 antennas and with the gain greater more than 5 dBi for a regular signal in a one-story house or apartment.
The best budget Wi-Fi routers of this year and more about them you can look here:

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