5+ Best Routers For DD-WRT 2021: List, Reviews & Buyer’s Guide
If you want to know best DD-WRT routers? It is better for us to understand DD-WRT first. Right? I want to clear this up, as it is something which was earlier my concern too.
DD-WRT is a firmware, not a router itself. Yes, DD-WRT is a Linux based firmware which our wireless access points and wireless routers use. It was introduced by Linksys with its first DD-WRT router. In simple words, a router which uses DD-WRT firmware called DD-WRT router.
But, why we actually need a DD-WRT router? The answer to this question is straightforward. DD-WRT firmware is very powerful, thus makes router powerful in terms of exploring functionalities such as overclocking, increasing signal strength, improving range, and many more. A good thing about DD-WRT firmware is you can download it for free. If your wireless router is DD-WRT firmware supported, then visit this website and download yourself.
Now, What is the best DD-WRT Router? As Linksys introduced it, so my recommendation is Linksys AC1900 WRT1900ACS. However, if you don’t like Linksys routers, then TP-LINK TL-WDR3600 will not disappoint you. Plus, it is a budget-friendly router.
Why Choose A DD-WRT Supported Router? Should You Buy One?
People generally know that Wireless routers can be enhanced with firmware but aren’t really sure if they need it. Here are some solid reasons why you should buy a DD-WRT Flash Router.
This firmware is open source which means that people around the globe have full access to tweak and add to it. As a result of this, the firmware is almost always up to date with bug fixes and security updates. It also unlocks some premium features, which are only available in high-end business routers.
These additional features play a vital role in boosting performance and increasing functionality and security. Also, you can rest assured that DD-WRT is one of the easiest firmware to flash on to a router. Therefore, when you buy a router, always choose a top DDwrt Supported Device.
Here Are My Top 5 DD-WRT Wireless Routers Of 2021:
Linksys AC1900 (WRT1900ACS) Wireless Router – Best Overall
NETGEAR Nighthawk AC1900(R7000) DD-WRT Router – All-Time Best
ASUS RT-AC68U AC1900 DD-WRT router – For Whole Home
D-Link AC3200 Ultra DIR-890L/R – For Tri-Band
TP-LINK TL-WDR3600 Wireless Router – Best DD-WRT Under 100
Asus RT-AC56R AC1200 – Cheap DD-wrt Router
The 5+ Best DD WRT Routers Reviewed: Pros, Cons & Verdict
Let’s explore or unveiled some of the top 2021’s dd-wrt routers. Plus, I am going to review all of them one by one so that you can understand whether it suits your needs or not.
1. Linksys AC1900 WRT1900ACS – Best Overall
AC1900ACs is my first choice. It deserves its position on my list. As I said, Linksys has put a lot of efforts while making this awesome, powerful, and DD-WRT compatible router. Linksys has designed the WRT1900acs as one of the most elite devices on the market today. With a sleek high tech design, it looks highly admirable.
The performance of this AC1900ACS is said to be superior to most other devices in this range and given its DD-WRT compatibility; this one is a really great performer with fastest data transfer rates. There are four detachable antennas that add to the device’s iconic look. It can easily handle a huge network load with multiple users simultaneously.
It also comes with the most potent flash memory ever seen in a wireless network device. Even though these features are already excellent, flashing the device with custom firmware or DD-WRT OpenVPN will make it even better. This is one of the best DD-WRT routers for home.
Pros & Cons:
- A powerful Dual-core 1.6Ghz ARM-based processor ensures a faster WiFi connection for multiple devices and wired connection.
- USB 3.0 for ultra-fast data transfer. So when we connect any USB 3.0 supported storage devices, it delivers enhanced performance.
- We can use it as a wireless repeater or bridge mode.
- It is open Source-ready, it means we can customize its firmware and even replace with other third-party firmware like OpenWRT, Tomato, and OpenVPN.
- It supports Beamforming technology for faster and stronger connections to a specific device.
- It updates the firmware automatically.
I don’t like:
- Setup is a bit tricky.
The Linksys AC1900 dual band router is one of the best high-quality DD-WRT routers around, featuring high speeds, multiple connections, a high-speed processor and overall excellent performance, albeit for a high price.
If you have the budget, you can’t go wrong with the Linksys, if you’re looking for a high-performance router.
2. NETGEAR Nighthawk AC1900 (R7000) – Best Overall
The second router on my list is Netgear Nighthawk AC1900 R7000. The overall performance, range, and price are the main reasons, which forced me to give it this position. If compared to Linksys AC1900ACS, R7000 would be its main competitor.
Netgear r7000 dual-band router comes with a powerful 1Ghz dual-core processor. It has high powered signal amplifiers, and antennas that genuinely enhance the Wi-Fi performance, and flashing the router will allow for some more options to improve its range.
Content and online time management can be done in the smart way as it comes with the Circle app, which lets you manage content and time such as content filter, time limit, website block, bedtime, and internet access on any connected devices.
Pros & Cons:
- It has four high-powered external amplifiers supported antennas, which improves mobile WiFi speeds. As advertised, it can improve speeds by up to 100%.
- Dynamic QoS with Beamforming + technology makes smooth and lag-free media streaming and uninterrupted gaming.
- It also features 1xUSB 2.0 and 1xUSB 3.0 port for media sharing, hard drive, and printer.
- Like Linksys AC1900ACs, it can deliver WiFi speeds up to 1900 using both bands ( 600Mbps ~ 2.4Ghz + 1300Mbps ~ 5Ghz).
- With Nighthawk App, we can set up the R7000 easily.
I don’t like:
- It doesn’t have an eSata port.
If you are looking for an easy to use DD-WRT compatible router, then this r7000 dd-wrt router is a good option. If you want extra advanced features like MU-MIMO technology, eSATA, etc., then you can go with Netgear nighthawk x4s with.
3. ASUS RT-AC68U AC1900: – Best DD-WRT For Whole Home
I was confused between RT-AC68U and R7000, as both routers are tremendous and share some same features. However, R7000 is a bit better in terms of performance and range. So, our third router for DD-wrt is ASUS RT-AC68U. Plus, it is cheaper than the R7000.
The Asus RT-AC86U is dual-band with latest 802.11AC 3×3 technology compatible router. Like Linksys AC1900ACS and TP-Link R7000, It can deliver WiFi speeds up to 1900Mbps using both bands ( 1300Mbps on 5GHz + 600Mbps on 2.4Ghz).
With RT-AC86U, We get AiProtection; It can protect us from online threads. The AiProtection is powered by Trend Micro, a well-known network security company. It ensures multi-stage protection. So, it is going to be a huge plus if we go with RT-AC86U.
Pros & Cons:
- Most importantly, we can create our own whole-home WiFi system as it comes with an innovative ASUS AiMesh feature.
- ASUSWRT user interface allows 3-step web-based installation.
- It is packed with beamforming technology, which ensures an enhanced signal range and wireless connectivity.
- It is an 802.11AC WiFi standard router and supports TurboQAM WiFi acceleration for faster WiFi internet.
- RT-AC68U comes with four Gigabit Ethernet Lan ports with USB 2.0 & USB 3.0 ports.
- ASUSWRT Graphical User Interface (GUI) can set it up within 30 seconds for you. i>
I don’t like:
- The provided Ethernet cable is not cat6.
I didn’t find any issue with this router while loading DD-WRT. I noticed some huge changes in performance and range after installing DD-WRT firmware. If you are DD-WRT fan, then this RT-AC68U is made for you.
4. D-Link AC3200 Ultra DIR-890L/R – Best Tri-Band DD-WRT Router
The fourth router on my list is D-LINK AC3200 ultra. I took this router because of tri-band compatibility. The only D-LINK router which I found best dd-wrt router for gaming. As you know that it is a tri-band router, it means better range, performance, and would be able to handle multiple devices with ease.
D-Link AC3200 triband router comes with a unique design and seems to be inspired by a sci-fi theme. After a long wait, D-Link has created a truly attractive premium device that performs twice as good as it looks.
It has the looks of a mini-drone but is loaded with all the features that are commonly seen in premium routers in the market today. As if that’s not enough, it also comes with DD-WRT compatibility which further extends the device’s functionality and gives unlimited options to increase the range, speed, network security and much more. Even a better option for streaming videos. This D-Link is a fully lightning fast device.
Pros & Cons:
- Six Advanced AC Beamforming external antennas deliver more bandwidth than you will ever need, even when sharing the router with many other users.
- It can deliver maximum WiFI speeds of up to 3.2Gbps ( 600Mbps on 2.4Ghz + 2x 1300Mbps on 5Ghz bands).
- The interface of the router is quite intuitive. It makes installation and network management easy.
- It also features Intelligent QoS traffic optimization for seamless performance (gaming & 4K/HD video streaming) and multiple devices.
- Excellent Customer Support by D-LINK.
I don’t like:
- A bit expensive.
If you are looking for a truly attractive router with all the features that you can think of, this one could be your choice. It is an extreme and one of the best routers to buy. From its off-the-charts price of $220 to the six antennas mounted on the sides of its heptagonal chassis, everything about the AC3200 screams “the best you can get.” You have full control over IPs as well. You can block any ip address with an easy setup.
However, If you have a larger home, then you can try D-LINK ac5300. It would be another great option.
5. TP-LINK TL-WDR3600 – Best DD-WRT router under 100
The fifth router on my list is TP-LINK TL-WDR3600. This is one of the highly recommended routers and is truly a powerful device. Flashing it with the DD-WRT firmware makes it even better in terms of performance. You won’t face any problem while connecting to your network.
The default speed of the router is 300 Mbps for each of the dual bands these speeds can be significantly boosted through the advanced option made available by flashing the router. It can create vpn connections with ease. It can be a better feature if you are a vpn client, but it depends on your vpn provider.
Pros & Cons:
- It supports IPv6 internet protocol.
- It comes with 2 USB 2.0 ports for sharing files, media content, and printer.
- WAN to LAN throughput is up to 800Mbps.
- It has four Gigabit Ethernet LAN ports with 1 WAN (internet) port.
- TP-LINK also provide built-in media server for sharing music or media content.
- Budget-friendly and comes under $100.
- Customer support of TP-LINK is excellent.
I don’t like:
- Web Interface is not that straightforward. Even you can’t change or custom attached devices’ name.
If your home network has heavy usage of services like Netflix, HULU, and other such video streaming options, having this router will undoubtedly improve the functionality of these applications.
6. Asus RT-AC56R AC1200 – Best DD-WRT router under 100
The sixth router on our list is Asus RT-AC56. There was a tie between RT-AC56 and TP-LINK TL-WDR3600. However, when it comes to DD-WRT compatibility, TL-WDR3600 is better than RT-AC56.
The Asus RT-AC56U AC1200 also known as the Asus Overplay is a fresh and improved version of the classic RT-N56U. You can say that it is an excellent connectable device. However, the company has retained all the popular features and also its design.
With a high powered 800 Mhz Broadcom Processor, this is the best router from Asus that comes with DD-WRT compatibility, it is known to handle a load of more than five people using the network for high quality streaming at the same time.
Pros & Cons:
- It uses 5th generation 802.11ac chipset for super-fast WiFi.
- Protection of the router is excellent as it comes with AiProtection, which is powered by Trend Micro, provides triple-strength network security.
- It features an advanced version of Beamforming called AiRadar for optimizing signal strength.
- It has four Ethernet Gigabit ports with USB 3.0 & USB 2.0 port for sharing a printer and other storage devices.
- It also comes with an iCloud app for media sharing or streaming files.
I don’t like:
- If compared to TP-LINK TL-WDR3600, its signal is not that strong.
Make no mistake; the ASUS RT-AC56U is a great budget-friendly DD-WRT gigabit router. For the unusually low sub-$100 prices, the RT-AC56U offers exceptional value and great looks too.
In fact, as far as its price-performance ratio is concerned, we would recommend the ASUS over the TP-LINK WDR3600 which we looked at earlier. However, the RT-AC56U is neither as fast as other, more upmarket offerings, nor is the build quality really worth mentioning.
Some Advantages Of Buying DD-WRT Routers: 11 Factors you should know about DD-WRT.
Also known as Quality of Service in network devices, it is a standard or mechanism that makes sure that the prioritized task, application or users get the most out of their computer’s resources like bandwidth and transfer speeds. This feature is programmed to keep resources ready for the prioritized user and for tasks considered more critical than some others.
This feature is called Network Attached Storage and is a useful feature that lets users connect any media storage device to the router and share or stream it over the home network.
DD-WRT Routers have extended capability to share printers over the network. Users can attach a wired printer through the USB port and all the devices on the network are able to use it.
This is a rather excellent feature that is available mostly with high-end business routers; however, it can be unlocked on a DD-WRT router. It basically speeds up the DNS lookup by keeping the data of the most visited websites in the router’s DNS cache.
A wireless bridge is when two wired networks are connected over the Wi-Fi; this bridge works like a client by logging into the main router to obtain web connectivity. The bridge can then share the connection from the LAN ports without creating a heavy load on the primary router.
Advance Performance Graphs:
If you have a DD-WRT FlashRouter then this feature will give you a comprehensive breakdown of all the network usage and activity through detailed statistics and charts.
Adjust Antenna Power:
This is another performance tweak that the user can enjoy with a DD-WRT compatible router. It enables the user to adjust the antennas’ power to extend the range of the wireless network further.
VPN: This is the functionality that allows a DD-WRT router to create a secured connection over a public network. With the help of this feature, businesses can give secured remote access to the business network from any public network.
This is a feature that enables network tunneling for multiple devices and consoles to access the Xling Kai Game Platform, which is one the most popular open-source gaming platforms that connect players from various consoles.
You may be familiar with ad-blockers which are used in browsers, these are similar scripts made for your routers. A DD-WRT will let you install this script on your hardware and get rid of annoying ads.
The DD-WRT firmware gives comprehensive reports about the network’s performance and the bandwidth usage using charts and statistics. If you are an advanced user, these reports will help you a lot in pinpointing bugs and testing new applications. And since it is an open source firmware, there will be constant improvement and advancements in terms of features.
Wi-Fi Hotspot Management:
Having a DD-WRT router enables users to install additional software to help with tasks like hotspot management. There is quite a few software which can be loaded on to a DD-WRT router to benefit from its extended functionality.
Frequently Asked Questions:
Does DD-WRT Feature Any Support For OpenVPN Or PPTP?
Yes, DD-WRT supports both of these solutions. Using OpenVPN and PPTP, you can log into VPNs (Virtual Private Networks) and encrypt your connection, securing your privacy, identity, and personal information when using the internet.
If I Upgrade My Router To DD-WRT, Will My Internet Get Faster?
If you set it up correctly, yes, DD-WRT and the advanced settings and functions associated with it can enable you to improve your internet connection speed.
Is There Anything I Should Know About The Process Of Installing DD-WRT Firmware?
You can learn about the installation procedure for your specific router on the aforementioned database at dd-wrt.com. This differs from device to device, but generally speaking, you will need to download a software package, “flash” your router and then install it in a particular, model-specific way in order to correctly add a DD-WRT capability to your machine.
What Are The Benefits Of A DD-WRT Router?
DD-WRT firmware gives you more control over your router’s settings and features when compared to manufacturers’ default software. This ranges from VPNs to adjustable antenna power, VLAN (Virtual LAN), unique SSID creation.
What Routers Have Ddwrt Vpn Support?
Renting a modem/router device is always possible, usually directly via the ISP. However, we advise against renting your modem router as most, if not all, rented devices on the market right now are particularly slow and outdated models.
In conclusion, wI can only recommend getting one of the above routers which have been handpicked from among the best DD-WRT Routers. Using this firmware model is not only incredibly beneficial, Thanks to the guidelines and explanations provided above—foolishly simple.
If you want a cost-efficient and compact choice, both TP-LINK and ASUS have something to offer. If you’re only looking for the best of the best, D-LINK would want a word with you. The market for high-end DD-WRT Routers isn’t very large, which fortunately means it isn’t very saturated either.
Thus, choosing the best router that suits your needs is much easier than what you might be used to, from previous gadget purchases. So, what are you waiting for? Go get a DD-WRT-compatible router and enjoy a freer, faster and more secure internet experience!