Free router or paid router?

8
Posted 7th Jan
Idiot alert over here

I have always used the routers provided by ISP’s but always wondered why bother buying a netgear or any other router brand at a cost of £xx

Do they make a difference?
(My wifi isnt the best in terms of drop outs and i have speeds of around 35mbps)
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Hello

The quality of free routers varies enormously between ISPs, so it would depend on which one you have.

If the drop outs are the Wifi itself, rather than your broadband dropping out, then it may help. Or you could contact the ISP and see if they'll send you any kit to help with the drop outs (a newer version of the router, or some repeaters, depending on their diagnosis of the drop outs). Again, the level of helpfulness you get will depend on the ISP.

I've never bought a router because I've never had a problem that I felt would be resolved by replacing the router, and I've found most ISP routers to do the job. I'd only consider buying one if I needed specific features that it didn't offer, such as MAC filtering. If the router is causing you day to day problems then I'd suggest trying to hold the ISP responsible before splashing out!
Edited by: "lyesbkz" 7th Jan
Talk talk routers were always terrible back in the day, they used to overheat and cause the internet to disconnect. Not sure about the newer ones.

bt home hub 4 was pretty poor for Wi-Fi

sky q hub was flakey when using Apple devices

this is my experience of isp provided routers.

switched to Ubiquiti UniFi system for the past 2 years and never had any issues with Wi-Fi or internet dropping out since upgrading to this, so I would say isp provider routers are built to be cheap to supply and this tells when compared to something like UniFi kit.

also isp provided routers have hardly no functionality but this really depends on what you need, the average consumer doesn’t need functionally such as VLANs, POE, deep packet inspection or advanced firewall and NAT configuration. So generally they do the job, but if you need something more than basic you are going to be buying a different router.
I use my own routers, although mine are just openwrt flashed BT Hub 5A's and a Plusnet hub one (same device), two came free with my ISP and I bought one off ebay for about £15.

Main reasons for using my own, far more flexible configuration options, like segregating my IP cameras from the internet, running a timeserver, VPN, email relay and even support for Mesh wifi.

Also, quite importantly, I can keep all my settings like the static lan IP addresses for every device, and just reconfigure the connection settings whenever I change ISP.
Edited by: "melted" 8th Jan
Always thought the same as you. Recently, kept having occasional WiFi dropouts when transferring files over WiFi (vm superhub 3) so thought I'd try the d-link ac1900 router (£50)


The difference is incredible. WiFi speeds gone up from 20-30mbps 20 feet from the router on a different floor to 70-80mbps (100mbps connection). Hasn't dropped the connection once in the 2 months I've owned it.


Has other nice features too like guest WiFi where guests can only access the Internet and not your local network. Device prioritising and static ip is handy too. User interface is brilliant and great app too.
Edited by: "chocci" 8th Jan
chocci08/01/2020 05:05

Always thought the same as you. Recently, kept having occasional WiFi …Always thought the same as you. Recently, kept having occasional WiFi dropouts when transferring files over WiFi (vm superhub 3) so thought I'd try the d-link ac1900 router (£50)The difference is incredible. WiFi speeds gone up from 20-30mbps 20 feet from the router on a different floor to 70-80mbps (100mbps connection). Hasn't dropped the connection once in the 2 months I've owned it.Has other nice features too like guest WiFi where guests can only access the Internet and not your local network. Device prioritising and static ip is handy too. User interface is brilliant and great app too.


Thanks buddy i will look at buying that
I used to use the asus dsl n66u for my talktalk fibre that was way better than the original ISP router. Planned to continue using this when i switched to EE fibre but the ee smart hub router was better, surprised me. Usually the ISP equipment isnt good but the ee smart hub router was impressive
I used to use the isp ones I found virgin sky and BT ok but recently went to Vodaphone and there router is just terrible so have had to purchase my own.
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