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Excellent Router that Punches Well Above its Price Point -- Buy It
on October 3, 2016
I found this router through a third party website review (the Wire Cutter), that aptly called this, "the Best Wi-Fi Router (for Most People)." I would probably amend that title and say, "the Best Wi-Fi Router (for Virtually Everyone)." Do not let the low price fool you into thinking it's an entry level or low-end model. It only costs around $100 but, from my observations against four other routers that cost considerably more, it performs well beyond its price point.
I have purchased a number of routers over the years as the technology and performance improves, and the number of devices my family uses has increased. Over the past few years, I had migrated to the more expensive ($300+) routers in the hopes of greater performance. Right before this, I had an Asus RT-AC5300, a beast of a router that exceeded $400 when I bought it. But what I found was that as the price point goes up, the performance does not, and the reliability goes down. These expensive routers tend to be buggy and drop connections; they simply have too many features and are way too complex, all to provide functionalities that no one uses, or that none of your connected devices support anyway. The ASUS got so bad it was rebooting itself every few hours. The days of the rock-solid Linksys WRT54G seemed long gone... So I returned the ASUS RT-AC5300, gave my WRT1900ACS to a friend, and bought an Archer C7 (v2).
After two weeks of testing it, I have four words: it just works -- period. The signal is strong and punches through the lathe-and-plaster walls of my nearly 100 year old house. Its signal is considerably stronger than the WRT1900ACS that I had (which cost almost three times what this one did), and rivaled the signal strength of the $400 ASUS. It doesn't drop connections, doesn't reboot itself, and delivers a strong and steady stream of data to all devices, wired and wireless.
Only one word of warning; you need to make sure the Archer C7 that you purchase is NOT a first version. Everyone on the web has reported that TP-LINK badly botched the V1, especially for Macintosh/Apple devices (which is most of my house); most of those should be out of circulation or in landfills by now. The one I bought from Amazon was a V2, and it works perfectly with all of my Apple and non-Apple devices.