I think I can categorize wireless routers into two categories. Category A is cheap, limited hardware, but with an intuitive user interface. Category B is expensive, great hardware, but more settings than the average user wants to muddle through. While I’m not saying that good middle-of-road options don’t exist, I haven’t seen one that excites me nearly as much as what I just found. I’m not entirely certain when the DIR-869 AC1750 EXO released, but it feels like it just popped up out of nowhere. D-LINK may have offered us the best balance of performance to cost with this one.
It turns out that both the DIR-879 and 869 were unveiled at CES earlier this year. While the 879 released in the first quarter, the 869 wasn’t supposed to release until the second one. I’m only bringing it up now because while scouring Newegg for the host of reasons I have to scour Newegg, a banner scrolled this by and I had to find out what was going on. It was the $119.99 price that really caught my eye. Considering this unit has AC wireless, a dual core processor, beam forming and intelligent QoS, the price seems like an excellent deal.
The other nice thing about this router is the user interface. I recently purchased a D-LINK DIR-842 in an attempt to not only smooth some online gaming experiences out, but try yet again to get some better wireless coverage in my house. It was the first router that met and even exceeded my expectations. The new user interface is great for someone who isn’t trying to dig into more complex networking. What I really wanted was the intelligent QoS feature. My internet speeds fluctuate so much, most QoS feature won’t work unless I cap my speed to less than 5 Mbps. D-LINK’s intelligent QoS worked great without forcing me to manually set my internet speeds which was awesome!
Personally, if you’re looking for a good gaming router that has some strong hardware specs, but will be easy to setup while not breaking the bank, I can’t think of a better option than the DIR-869. The AC1750 is a good speed for keeping lag at a minimum if you have to game over wireless, but the price is much lower than many of the modern gaming routers out there. On top of that, you don’t have to be a network engineer to optimize your gaming traffic either. Normally, I wouldn’t recommend something like this but since the DIR-842 has been helpful for me, I hope this recommendation will be helpful for someone else.