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The 9 Most Compelling Features of the Netgear AC1900 Nighthawk 5Ghz Smart WiFi Router (list)

James Pikover Avatar

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The Nvidia SHIELD coverage is not quite over. But using the device really got me jazzed to talk about one of the recommended companion devices. Among them, camp Nvidia strongly suggests a 5Ghz router for the best performance when streaming games from your home PC, laptop or when pulling games down from Nvidia’s GRID cloud gaming servers, currently only in California (GRID is currently in Beta). Learn more about the best AC router.

Currently the two leading 5Ghz AC1900 routers are from Asus and Netgear. We have the latter’s AC1900 Nighthawk Smart WiFi router on hand. The AC1900 labeling means the Nighthawk can support physical tethered link rates up to 1300 mbps via the 5Ghz radio utilizing 802.1ac network standard. Yet it can simultaneously achieve 600 mbps with its 2.5hz radio using the older 802.11n. Note this is considerably higher than 450 mbps of older 2.6hz 802.11n solutions. In addition to the speed, here’s a quick rundown of the 9 most compelling features of the Netgear AC1900 Nighthawk 5Ghz Smart WiFi Router.

1. Super Easy Setup

Netgear nighthawk 3

Router installation and setup is rarely laborious and often a fairly simple affair. But things can get tricky if your current modem doubles as a working WiFi router already. AT&T U-verse users should be familiar with this dynamic. I was able to set things up without making a bridge. After accessing the web-based user interface, disabled the AT&T WiFi connection. Easy. I then navigated to web UI for the Nighthawk and set up a new network password and tailored the connection structure, prioritizing various types of network traffic

2. Advanced QoS

Traffic prioritization is courtesy of the advanced QoS (quality of service). Here the Netgear router excels over the competition with upstream as well as downstream QoS. So you can assign higher priority to Amazon Prime or Hulu as well as games.

3. Sweet Security

You can block phishing and spyware. But what I love is the ability to block websites based on keywords. It also features traditional Open DNS, VPN for secured home network access., WPA/WPA2 and free FTP server/URL.

4. Ludicrous Speed

The aforementioned 600 mbps for your wirelessly connected devices will produce noticeably peppier network connections. The brief hiccups when stream games from the Nvidia GRID cloud gaming network are completely gone now while using the Nighthawk. The speed is amazing. This is especially true for wirelessly streaming video and graphically rich and expansive game environs. Both the 1300 Mbps physical link connections speeds and the 600 mbps WiFi speeds make file transfer and backups a breeze.

5. USB 3.0 and USB 2.0

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The Nighthawk has a single USB 2.0 port on the unit rear, with a High Speed USB 3.0 port on the front of the router. These USB ports will turn any external USB drive into an effective network drive accessible via any computer or mobile device connected to the network.

6. Expansive Range

Netgear’s router game has always been solid. Yet far-reaching signal range has always been a hurdle, due to an incessant fixation on internal antennas. Not this time. The Nighthawk uses 3 massive high powered. Crazy connectivity & support options such as…Fast pitch here! Across your network, connect via DLNA for playing media and games on supported TVs and gaming device. ReadyShare is how you identify your network drive or shared printers when using the above-mentioned USB ports. AirPlay and iTunes are supported as is Mac backup – Time Machine by way of a connected USB.

7. Dual Band

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Dual band is nothing new. But this is the preferred simultaneous band variety, opposed to the “Selectable Dual Band” flavor. Dual offers twice the bandwidth whereas simultaneous is limited to one band or the other. So you can set some devices on the 2.Ghz and others on the 5Ghz, which is good gaming and streaming HD media.

8. Mobile App WiFi Management

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The Genie App is downloadable for iOS and Android devices. It grants remote access to the router while connected to the network. Take control of shared media, fine tune settings, transfer files and more. The Genie App is nice addition to manage your entire network from anywhere in the home.

9. Can’t Forget Beamforming+

This little video sums up the bulk of the Nighthawks Beamforming+ features, which really rounds out the full scope of features minus the technical minutia.

Final Thoughts

The AC1900 Nighthawk 5Ghz Smart WiFi routers is a class leading solution for demanding users, be they high end gamers or small office workers. The scope of features is staggering – air tight security options, remote management with the Genie app and blistering speed. Tacking on Nvidia’s stamp of approval makes the Nighthawk an official GameStream supported device for GRID and SHIELD. The Nighthawk is the elegant ninja of gaming routers, which amazingly , is only a myopic surmising of its expansive resume.

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