If you've been looking for a whole home Mesh Wi-Fi router, drop everything you're doing and listen to me. I'll tell you about a discount on the Netgear Orbi RBK50 on Woot, and I wouldn't be this excited if I hadn't recently purchased the same system and wasn't utterly happy about my decision. Do we have an, erm, deal?
My router struggles had started since I moved into my apartment and even though AmpliFi's repeater solved them, it was a momentary bandage. After months of random disconnections around the house, having to manually toggle Wi-Fi off/on on all our phones every few hours to stay online, Google Homes all responding together as if they couldn't tell they were on the same network, and more issues, my TP-Link router gave up. I had to find a replacement quickly and nearly every online guide I found had the Orbi RBK50 in its top five, if not the top recommendation. Amazon reviews were the best of all Mesh systems. Plus, two words kept popping up: reliable and powerful. Exactly what I needed after my months of frustration. I knew this was overkill for my 1600 sqft apartment, but I didn't care. I needed something that wouldn't shit the bed if more than three devices were connected at the same time.
We've been using the RBK50 for a month and a half, and I have zero regrets, whatsoever. I'll paraphrase what I wrote on Twitter a few weeks ago: this Mesh makes my crappy Lebanese DSL connection good, no more dead zones, no toggling phones on/off, no more rebooting the router thrice a week (on a good week), no more multiple Google Homes answering together, and my 30+ smart home devices all work super well. Even streaming videos from my Synology to Plex on my Shield is instantaneous, and the entire buffer fills up in less than a few seconds. (Yes, we even used to have issues with that local connection before!) Bonus: It doesn't heat up the wooden shelf I've placed it on. Everything works as intended and, for the first time, I've forgotten I have a router. That, trust me, is a great thing to say.
So if you haven't gathered already, I'm a fan. I won't dwell on the tech specs of the RBK50, but I'll mention the highlights: tri-band, up to 3 Gbps in speed and 5000 sqft in coverage, one main unit and one satellite, both with 4 Ethernet ports for all your hubs and wired devices, and it's expandable to support more satellites. It has a guest network, intelligently organizes traffic so that devices that need more bandwidth can have it, and offers more professional paid parental controls and online threat protection if you need them.
The Orbi RBK50's MSRP is $370, but it's currently around $300 on Amazon and has been bouncing around that price for over a year. It dropped once to $200 16 months ago, but hasn't come near that price since. So $180 for a refurb today on Woot is a great deal. These are factory reconditioned items with 90-day hardware warranty and product support, so you should be able to return them if there's any issue. If you're interested, the link to buy is below. Expect a big cubic box in the mail!