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Greg asked: “I’m trying to increase my Wi-Fi signal upstairs. I have a dual band wi-fi router. The signal kind of drops out upstairs. I’m looking at a TrendNet AC2600 router. Wanted to see if you thought that would be okay? Unless you got something that’s a little cheaper.”
Greg, the router itself does seem like a decent device, but for your needs, you may be better off looking into a mesh system.
Mesh systems are designed to deal with dead spots by getting several devices to work together to improve whole house connectivity without you having to worry about antennas or access point placement (within reason). The additional units act as advanced repeaters that can talk to each other and adjust.
The AC2600 you’re looking at costs around $340, and while it has plenty of MIMO antennas, it is a single device that sits in a single spot.
For about $280 you can get a 3-station Google WiFi mesh system that will feature beamforming, a technology that works to get rid of dead spots by angling internal components to boost coverage in areas that are not getting it.
If you want to stick with a traditional manufacturer of networking equipment you can look into the Netgear Orbi system. It will cost you a little more than the router you’ve been looking at, but it comes with multiple stations, usually 2, but you can daisy chain systems, so it can be more if needed. The base stations talk to each other through a tri-band connection which Netgear claim helps their system be 100% faster than their competitors.
The other big name to look at is Eero. Eero systems feature 3 stations, and costs around $400. The Eero system’s main base station is a little bit larger than the two beam stations and is the one that replaces the router, the two beam stations just plug into walls.
Both the Eero and Netgear’s Orbi feature the same kind of beamforming technology that the Google offering does, so they should help you get rid of dead spots, they’ll just cost you around $100 more than Google’s version of the technology.
If you do want to stick to a single router, the one you’re looking at is not a bad option, but given the price you’re looking at, you may be better served by a mesh system.