What kind of wifi/router do I need to maximize gigabit Internet?

UNCjigga

Lifer
Dec 12, 2000
20,317
2,233
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So I recently upgraded from 300mbps fiber to gigabit fiber to take advantage of AT&T promotional pricing (actually $10 cheaper/month) and eliminate data caps. My original R7000 Nighthawk was doing fine with 300Mbps, as I was able to max that out on any client connected via 5Ghz, and still got a respectable 150-200mbps on 2.4GHz clients.

However, I haven't seen any increase in speed over wifi with the upgraded service. I'm still averaging 300-350Mbps on 5Ghz ac wifi, even when sitting 6 feet away from the router. I'm thinking it's probably due to my older router only having 2 bands and supporting fewer streams. Should I upgrade to one of the newer ax routers, or do I just need an ac router with more streams/more bands/more antennas? What other features should I look for--Mu-MIMO?

I know it's not an issue with the connection to the house or the structured wiring, as my ethernet speeds are just fine (even after going through additional switches 30+ feet from the router):
https://www.speedtest.net/result/8558606113
 

JackMDS

Elite Member
Super Moderator
Oct 25, 1999
28,913
210
106
Your current Wireless Router is a Giga Router.

However Giga Internet/Network relates to wire and very little to do with Wireless.

You current Wireless capability of your Router is AC1900.

Netgear as well as other vendors offering Giga Routers with better Wireless.

As an Example, Netgear offers Nighthawk X6 AC3200 Tri-Band WiFi Router

AC3200 Wireless should be better than AC1900.

Here you can see Wireless Ranks - https://www.smallnetbuilder.com/tools/rankers/router/view

Here you can see a preview of the New X6 Wireless.

https://www.smallnetbuilder.com/tools/rankers/router/view

Notice the comment: "Our first look at the performance of NETGEAR's RAX80 and ASUS' RT-AX88U shows little benefit functioning as AC routers".

Unfortunately Consumer Wireless Marketing currently detaching from real technology.

Do not be surprised if the near future a Lot of Dog-Puppies will be selling Tech. Network too.
o_O-:p-:confused:-:D


:cool:
 

mnewsham

Lifer
Oct 2, 2010
14,114
273
136
What device are you using to test with?

Most laptops are equipped with 2x2 wifi cards, which will generally max out around 300-400mbps at best.

For gigabit speeds you need 3x3 or 4x4 wifi cards, and most laptops and other portable devices simply aren't equipped with such cards
 
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UNCjigga

Lifer
Dec 12, 2000
20,317
2,233
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What device are you using to test with?

Most laptops are equipped with 2x2 wifi cards, which will generally max out around 300-400mbps at best.

For gigabit speeds you need 3x3 or 4x4 wifi cards, and most laptops and other portable devices simply aren't equipped with such cards
Yeah I’ve mainly tested with my iPhone XS, chromebook, and HP laptop. Didn’t think it could just be a client issue. I guess I won’t waste my money on a new router then, and when promo pricing runs out I *might* drop back to 300...if I can get rid of the pesky data caps.
 

VirtualLarry

Lifer
Aug 25, 2001
44,787
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Gigabit? True Gigabit over wifi? LOL. Keep dreaming.

The current state-of-the-art, is probably around 600-700Mbit/sec, with a 3x3AC wifi client, in close proximity with a 3x3 or 4x4 AC wifi router. At best. Remember too, that's uni-directional, because wifi is half-duplex.

There's really no comparison, if you want "true" gigabit, you need wired, period.

If you're using a laptop, there are USB (Type-C) to Gigabit ethernet dongles. (I bought a few recently shipped from China for under $5 ea., we'll see how well they work.) I bought a recent-vintage Lenovo IdeaPad S145 that lacked an ethernet port, and I've basically stopped using wifi, even on my laptop (wired up, in bed). Mostly for health reasons.

Edit: Also note, that CPU performance, as well as load, can determine the highest wired speeds that you can get too.
My Ryzen 3 3200U laptop, an HP that does have a built-in Gigabit ethernet jack, doesn't even push gigabit wired. I get maybe 500-600Mbit/sec for some reason.

And even my Ryzen R5 3600 desktop PC (current state-of-the-art), has trouble hitting the full gigabit internet connection, using my 10GbE-T card (maxes at 880Mbit/sec down), and while mining (like 300Mbit/sec down, due to CPU load, and only 9Mbit/sec up.)

Edit: The future looks pretty decent, though. 802.11ax wifi ("Wifi 6"), looks to have some really great technology, and once everything is "Wifi 6"-capable, then performance over wifi should increase tremendously over 802.11ac (even wave2).
 
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mnewsham

Lifer
Oct 2, 2010
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The current state-of-the-art, is probably around 600-700Mbit/sec, with a 3x3AC wifi client, in close proximity with a 3x3 or 4x4 AC wifi router. At best. Remember too, that's uni-directional, because wifi is half-duplex.
I've seen Macbook Pros hit 900mbps+ on wifi, using a 4x4 access point.
 

mxnerd

Diamond Member
Jul 6, 2007
4,521
401
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If you were just 6 foot away from the router, why not just use wired ethernet? That will take full advantage of your gigabit Internet.

==

Your R7000 spec
https://www.netgear.com/images/datasheet/networking/wifirouter/R7000.pdf

AC1900 WiFi
Band 1: 600Mbps @2.4GHz + 256 QAM support
Band 2: 1300Mbps @5GHz 11ac
Simultaneous Dual Band WiFi - Tx/Rx 3x3 (2.4GHz) + 3x3 (5GHz) -
IEEE® 802.11 b/g/n 2.4GHz + 256 QAM support - IEEE® 802.11 a/n/ac 5.0GHz

Like others have said, your laptop need to have 3x3 adapter to fully take advantage of your router.
 
Last edited:

Tup3x

Senior member
Dec 31, 2016
234
106
86
Gigabit? True Gigabit over wifi? LOL. Keep dreaming.

The current state-of-the-art, is probably around 600-700Mbit/sec, with a 3x3AC wifi client, in close proximity with a 3x3 or 4x4 AC wifi router. At best. Remember too, that's uni-directional, because wifi is half-duplex.

There's really no comparison, if you want "true" gigabit, you need wired, period.

If you're using a laptop, there are USB (Type-C) to Gigabit ethernet dongles. (I bought a few recently shipped from China for under $5 ea., we'll see how well they work.) I bought a recent-vintage Lenovo IdeaPad S145 that lacked an ethernet port, and I've basically stopped using wifi, even on my laptop (wired up, in bed). Mostly for health reasons.

Edit: Also note, that CPU performance, as well as load, can determine the highest wired speeds that you can get too.
My Ryzen 3 3200U laptop, an HP that does have a built-in Gigabit ethernet jack, doesn't even push gigabit wired. I get maybe 500-600Mbit/sec for some reason.

And even my Ryzen R5 3600 desktop PC (current state-of-the-art), has trouble hitting the full gigabit internet connection, using my 10GbE-T card (maxes at 880Mbit/sec down), and while mining (like 300Mbit/sec down, due to CPU load, and only 9Mbit/sec up.)

Edit: The future looks pretty decent, though. 802.11ax wifi ("Wifi 6"), looks to have some really great technology, and once everything is "Wifi 6"-capable, then performance over wifi should increase tremendously over 802.11ac (even wave2).
Netgear Nighthawk X4S and Huawei P30:


With cable:
 

SamirD

Senior member
Jun 12, 2019
302
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www.huntsvillecarscene.com
Have you tried using the built-in wifi of the AT&T router? This is one area where isp equipment does work better as they would have thousands of people mad if they didn't have gigabit wirelessly if the consumer's equipment was capable of it.
 

mnewsham

Lifer
Oct 2, 2010
14,114
273
136
Have you tried using the built-in wifi of the AT&T router? This is one area where isp equipment does work better as they would have thousands of people mad if they didn't have gigabit wirelessly if the consumer's equipment was capable of it.
It literally doesn't matter what router he uses if the devices he's using only have 2x2 or 1x1 wifi cards that max out well below 1gbps.
 

Muadib

Lifer
May 30, 2000
15,239
74
91
I agree with mnewsham. My iPhone XS max only has mimo 2x2 for wifi, and I only get 400mbps max. My 2 month old Razer blade 15 only gets about 350mbps. I don't know what I can do about that, but when I think about it, I get pissed.
 

SamirD

Senior member
Jun 12, 2019
302
28
51
www.huntsvillecarscene.com
I agree with mnewsham. My iPhone XS max only has mimo 2x2 for wifi, and I only get 400mbps max. My 2 month old Razer blade 15 only gets about 350mbps. I don't know what I can do about that, but when I think about it, I get pissed.
wifi has always been for convenience, not for speed--that's why I'm almost always wired. I can actually feel wireless latency and hate it.
 

JackMDS

Elite Member
Super Moderator
Oct 25, 1999
28,913
210
106
The real world is Not Exactly following marketing and Wishful Thinking.
When One measures the "Speed” of a Wireless card one gets the "Speed" of one simple App that works for short period of time and uses all the Bandwidth for itself.
When more demanding Apps work on the computer it really performs slower.

In addition, because of the size of a Wireless card it lack of Heat sink and its location in a Laptop or other small computers’ devices, the card’s circuit has self-protecting setting that reducing the Speed to avoid Burning.

The story is like in the first few years of WIFI when Consumers WIFI came out. The Numbers reported were 300 feet indoor and 1200 Feet out door.
Took long time to the “wishful consumers” to Understand that in almost all normal Indoor it is really less than 100 Feet, and one Big tree in outdoor would reduce the 1200 Feet to close to nothing.

SO… every year there is more Antennae and Reporting of High New numbers in Wireless.
It is improvement, but in the real Functional world the real improvement/performance is never even close to what it pretend to be.
 

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