When you are gaming you need a sound connection. Especially if you stream or play competitively. That means creating a setup where every component provides you with the best possible playing experience. You only need to have one weak link in the chain for your gameplay and enjoyment to suffer.

In this article, we are going to look at a piece of hardware that is not widely talked about – your router. As well as looking at how to make sure that your broadband connection is also up to the job.

Consider how your router is being used

The first step to buying a router is to work out how each member of the family uses the web, on the busiest day or time of the week. For example, on a Sunday, who will be streaming movies, playing games, revising for exams, looking at YouTube. Include how many phones, tablets, and in-home smart devices you have hooked up during a time like that. They all use bandwidth, so you will want to be sure that your broadband connection will provide you with enough capacity.

As well as be sure that your router can translate all that power and send it out throughout your home. This article explains how to work out how much bandwidth you need and whether your router can handle it.

Investigate gaming routers that have been properly tested

If providing everyone with the best possible gameplay is your priority, start your search for a new router by focusing on gaming routers. There are hundreds available, so it is not practical for you to trawl through them all trying to work out which ones have the right spec. It is much better to go to a gaming forum or read reviews that have been done by dedicated gaming sites or pro gamers. Double-check that the opinions are the result of actual testing. For example, this guy explains his testing process and shares everything.

Set your router up properly

Most routers offer you the chance to tweak how the signal is received and distributed. One of the main ways this is done is by using the Quality of Service (QoS) feature. Take the time to learn about it and set things up properly. When you do, everyone in the home will benefit from getting a more stable connection for their devices to use. It enables you to decide which devices go on which band, assign IP addresses, and more to make sure that the devices that need the most power always get it.

How a secure router can improve gameplay

For many reasons, it is important to consider security when buying a router. The securer it is the better. As well as ensuring that your family´s data stays secure it can improve gameplay by stopping other people from piggybacking on your connection. When someone does that they swallow up some of the available capacity.

Make sure that your connection is fast and stable

Of course, there is no point in spending a lot of money on a router if the connection that is going to it is not fast enough. Or, worse, is not stable. These days tracking down the fastest fibre broadband deals is not difficult. In most countries, there are price comparison websites and apps that provide users with lots of information. This makes it surprisingly easy to narrow down the options and home in on the providers in your area that offer what you need.

Working out how much speed you need

Go online and find out what the download, upload, and ping requirements are for the games and activities everyone in the family enjoys. Make a list, ideally on a spreadsheet, so that you can sort it so that the highest usage numbers are at the top. Simply by multiplying the data requirements of the thirstiest activities by the number of people in the household, you can work out what you need.

Checking that the provider will deliver the contracted speed

Once you have a provider in mind check out how they perform by speaking to friends and family and by using reviews. It is also a good idea to read the terms and conditions to find out if they are only obliged to deliver a percentage of the advertised speed. Also, make sure that your connection will not be throttled or capped.

Gaming routers are not cheap, but they are worth the money for people who play online a lot. You just need to take your time and do your research when buying one.

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