NetGear Orbi

What's the Best 4K Streaming Box?

Roku

Episode 1685

Mark from Los Angeles, CA

Which is better, the NVIDIA Shield or the Roku Ultra? Leo says both are 4K streaming devices. Leo really likes the Nvidia Shield. It's got the Integra processor and runs Android TV. But Roku has more channels and is 1/3 of the price. NVIDIA though, has better gaming, if you're into that. But if not, then the Roku Ultra is a better buy. How about mesh routers? Leo says that the Netgear Orbi has Wifi 6, but it's pretty expensive. The Eero is "smarter," in Leo's opinion. 

Is the Asus Mesh Router a good option?

Eero Mesh Router

Episode 1617

David from Los Angeles, CA

David is moving to a three-story house and he's looking to get an ASUS Mesh router and wants to know how it is. Leo says he's used most of the Mesh routers out there, but not ASUS. They do make good wifi extenders though. Mesh Routers are better though because it doesn't slow down like an extender does since it spends half its time talking to the router. Mesh has a backchannel for router communication. The eero Mesh router has an automatic quality of service that does a better job managing bandwidth as it's needed, and it gets smarter as time goes by. It also has parental control features.

Should I buy a Mesh router?

Linksys Velop

Episode 1613

Max from Riverside, CA

Max's home is 1700 square feet and he's thinking of getting a Mesh router. Leo says he's a big fan of Mesh networks because they can handle congestion a lot better than an average router. Leo recommends Eero, but he also likes the Netgear Orbi, which is rated as the current fastest. But Eero does the quality of service (QOS) using bandwidth shaping.  Also understand that MESH routers are more expensive but usually come with a base station and a satellite unit. However, if you want the fastest possible connection for your TV, you'll want to hardwire it in. 

Are WiFi Extenders a Good Idea?

Eero

Episode 1600

David from Anaheim, CA

David needs to extend the WiFi in his apartment building. Will an extender do the job? Leo says it will, but at the cost of cutting bandwidth speed in half, because the base station is relaying the signal and spending half the time talking to the router. Leo recommends going with a MESH router. Eero is a good one, as is NetGear Orbi. But there are plenty more. Just about every router company makes a mesh model now. 

Will a mesh router work with my VOIP phone service?

Netgear Orbi mesh router

Episode 1557

Gwen from Pomona, CA

Gwen has internet through Spectrum. She's looking at getting a NetGear Orbi mesh router. Will she have issues with her phone service? Leo says that she will because Spectrum requires their router to use their phone service. But she can hook them up in tandem and have them coexist. It works with Comcast in a similar fashion. Leo says this is why you don't want to bundle services. It causes issues like this.

Should I buy a new router?

ASUS Tri-Band Gigabit (AC3200) WiFi Router

Episode 1548

Gordon from Long Island, NY

Gordon hears that after about 3 years, routers become less secure and outdated. So does he have to replace his ASUS AC3200 router? Leo says often, news agencies read copy from an electronic press kit. Routers are getting hacked, but if he bought a good router from a company that updates the firmware regularly, then he's OK. ASUS uses DD-WRT, which is updated regularly. So all he has to do is keep them updated.

Should I buy a mesh router?

Netgear Nighthawk

Episode 1532

Dave from Binghampton, NY

Dave wants to replace his Airport Extreme with a mesh router. Leo says that's a good idea since Apple has stopped making routers. Mesh routers are good because they are always updated and provide great coverage around a large house. The downside is that to get additional features and updates, he'll have to pay around $100 a year for that support.