Getting yourself a brand new Wi-Fi router means having to do quite a hefty amount of homework riddled with technical terms, plenty of confusing numbers, and then some more technical stuff, this time related to signal strength and what have you. If the realization that you actually have to read
through various manuals and other unpleasant-sounding brochures puts you in a crummy mood, you're not alone! There's a lot of people who would rather go without Internet altogether than have to endure a particularly traumatizing look-up session.
To help you storm through this key part of making your purchase, we've decided to do your homework for you, and are delivering to you a high-tech sort of buying guide where you can find all the consideration factors
crucial to not
ending up with an ill-designed buggy type of router incapable of delivering enough Internet power to stream your favorite cat video the way it deserves to be streamed - in full HD!
First of all, it's important to pay attention to the working frequency of your modem. The higher this value is, the better your router will be able to perform. Of course, better speed will also mean excess heat, so you should make sure that if you've chosen a fast modem, it has an appropriate cooling system so that it doesn't overheat and possibly blow up in the middle of an un-pausable online game! Typically, manufacturers nowadays produce routers with processors running at speeds from 2 to 5 GHz. Some more advanced models even feature an option of two different frequencies working together.
The processor itself is another important part of a Wi-Fi router
, as it controls all the processes, as its name suggests, that are taking place within your Internet home-configuration. Its speed is measured in GHz so the first value we've already described pretty much sums up the heating-related processor stuff. Processors can have multiple cores, which typically make them stronger and faster. At least one of the products we've chosen to feature on our top 5 list possesses two cores, as a matter of fact.
Although Wi-Fi modems are predominantly devices made to house a bunch of Ethernet cords
, some recently-developed models also feature a number of other ports and different attachments that can come in handy every now and again. For example, many companies now include a bunch of additional USB ports for every eventuality, so you can easily access more content that you've got stored on one of your USB sticks, for example. By the way, if you need a DVD player to watch some of your favorite films with your friends and family, check out our DVD players review
and learn more! (For a Blu-ray player, see this review instead
Last but not least, a product's warranty is definitely something worth taking into consideration, especially if we're talking about a device you're going to be using pretty much all the time! When Wi-Fi modems are in question, most of the manufacturers provide 1-year or 2-year warranties on their products, as any longer than that wouldn't make much sense since these are technical contraptions we're talking about. While we're at it, if anyone happens to be in need of a digital photo frame
, we've got this glorious high-tech department well-researched and ready as well!
Although it's true that Wi-Fi modems come in all shapes and sizes nowadays, the best of the best in this particular category come at quite a hefty price. That being said, these devices are quite important for the well-being of your home network. They do the lion's share of the work and will likely be on non-stop, so if you take that fact into consideration, their price is really not that much of a wonder.
Certain fine details such as the power of the processor or the number of Ethernet ports can be a factor in the price as the rule - more is better - certainly can be applied in this case! If you plan your purchase carefully and buy a model that matches your needs (rather than just going for the most powerful one - American style), chances are you'll be able to save a couple of bucks to spend on something else!
Since Wi-Fi routers are complex devices that feature a number of technical conundrums in their otherwise tiny housings, you can expect quite a bit of variation when it comes to their property sheets. Lest you end up with the wrong kind of router for your Internet-related needs, read the list of the most important features of a well-rounded Wi-Fi modem
The list of key features to pay attention to when buying a Wi-Fi router:
- Compatibility with Cable Providers
- Power Source
- Parental Controls
- Type of Antenna
- Number of Ethernet Ports
- USB Port Availability
- Processor Speed
All in all, the processor's speed is possibly the most important aspect of a Wi-Fi modem, so make sure to double-check if this parameter of your choice cuts the mustard!
Construction and Design
Looks are one of the departments where Wi-Fi modems actually do quite well. Whether it's futuristic designs with plenty of flashy colors or sleek elegant appearances in black and silver, these little Internet-spreading contraptions are surely going to improve your home's furniture configuration!
They typically come in the shape of a flat box with a bunch of Ethernet and other ports located on one of the sides. Some of the models are sold complete with specialized stands, while some others, on the other hand, come with a pair of built-in legs on which they're supposed to lie. And to top it off, they're quite small and can be placed virtually anywhere!
Performance and Ease of Use
If you compare Wi-Fi modems with some other Internet-related devices, you'll realize that these are the busy-bees of the tech world, as they’re mostly switched on at all times, incessantly providing Internet access to the entire family. What's more, when you think about how they get shouted at and discredited every time there's something wrong with the network, you see that the job these little guys do is really a proper modern-day drudgery!
As far as maintenance is concerned, there's really not much to think about - once you've turned them on, you can go on with your work and that's it. Just make sure to dust about it and possibly sweep it clean every now and then, and you're good to go!
If you mean to enjoy the Internet to the fullest - watch your daily dose of cat videos, argue with people you've never met, or otherwise spam the comment sections with your insightful opinions - you'd better get yourself a powerful Wi-Fi modem capable of delivering a wide range of high-quality content! To find out about the best brands in the business, see our top 5 list and learn more!