5 Best Wi-Fi Extenders for Gaming in 2022

This is our 2022 review of the best Wi-Fi boosters for playing video games online. 

A few weeks back, we purchased about a dozen WI-Fi extenders to put them through various tests and determine which ones are the best. 

And after countless hours of thorough testing, we found that the Netgear EAX80 AX6000 is the best Wi-Fi extender for online gaming. Because it is super fast, easy to set up, and has a fantastic range. 

Netgear EAX80 AX6000
Source: TP-Link.com

Editor’s Choice – Netgear EAX80 AX6000

Best Overall

  • Coverage: ≈ 65 feet
  • Max speed (Wi-Fi): 437.34 Mbps
  • Separate networks: No
  • Recommended for: Internet plans with 1000 Mbps or higher
  • Wireless standard: Wi-Fi 6
  • Warranty: 1-year

But, not everyone’s internet plans, home layout, and routers are the same. As such, the best Wi-Fi extender for you might differ. 

So, we put together a review of the five best Wi-Fi extender options for gaming to make it easy for you to choose the one that works best for YOU. 

Let’s jump in. 

Top 5 Wi-Fi Extenders For Gaming

  1. Netgear EAX80 AX6000Editor’s Choice
  2. TP-Link RE605X AX1800Runner Up
  3. TP-Link RE650 AC2600Best Range
  4. Netgear EX7300 AC2200 Mid-tier 
  5. Lynksys RE7000 AC1900Value Option

5 Best Wi-Fi Extenders For Gaming

Here are our short reviews of the best Wi-Fi extenders for gamers. 

#1 Netgear EAX80 AX6000 – Editor’s Choice

Netgear EAX80 AX6000
  • Coverage: ≈ 65 feet
  • Max speed (Wi-Fi): 437.34 Mbps
  • Separate networks: No
  • Recommended for: Internet plans of 1000 Mbps or higher
  • Wireless standard: Wi-Fi 6
  • Warranty: 1-year

Pros

  • Amazing speed
  • Single network
  • Great range

Cons

  • Some issues setting up
  • Costs more than other options

Our top-performing Wi-Fi extender for online gaming is the Netgear EAX80 since it fast, significantly increased our speed, and works on a single network. 

During our tests, the EAX80’s range on Wi-Fi was 65 feet and 75 feet on Ethernet.

This is an adequate range to cover all the floors of big homes, enough to provide you strong signal in your “gaming attic” or “gaming dungeon” in the basement. 

The EAX80 extender achieved speeds as fast as 436.34 Mbps on Wi-Fi and 811.59 Mbps on Ethernet at five feet on the 5 GHz band.

With this extender, you can download a 150 GB video game in about an hour. And it’s so fast that you won’t ever get stuck joining a game lobby or loading a match. 

I should also add that we tested this extender with the ASUS RT-AX88U, which is a great router. If you’re using a slow or ancient router from your Grandma’s attic, your extender’s speed will be slow too. 

The Netgear EAX80 also supports 802.11ax, the newest wireless networking technology (Wi-Fi 6). Wi-Fi 6 provides the best performance– fast speeds, low latency, and great bandwidth.  

The EAX80 has one advantage that few competing extenders have: it works on a single network. So, if you use a mobile device or gaming laptop in multiple rooms in your house, you won’t have to worry about which network you’re utilizing.

The EAX80 offers exceptional speed and distance, but our tests did uncover a few minor issues.

It took us considerably longer to set up than other extenders we tested– around 10 minutes, which was 7 to 8 minutes longer than other extenders. When we moved from Wi-Fi to Ethernet, the EAX80 needed to be reset.

It worked well after these problems, however.

Another disadvantage is that it costs more than the other four extenders we recommend in this article. 

But, for the best gaming experience, Netgear EAX80 AX6000 is definitely worth the extra money. Despite some small flaws, it is an excellent choice for a Wi-Fi repeater with a wide coverage radius and fantastic performance for online gaming.




#2 TP-Link RE605X AX1800 – Runner Up

TP-Link RE605X AX1800
  • Coverage: ≈ 60 feet
  • Max speed (Wi-Fi): 346.35 Mbps
  • Separate networks: Yes (not with TP-Link routers)
  • Recommended for:  Internet plans of 1000 Mbps or lower
  • Wireless standard: Wi-Fi 6 AX1800
  • Warranty: 3 years

Pros

  • Fast speeds
  • 3-year warranty
  • Quick and easy setup

Cons

  • Separate networks

The TP-Link RE605X AX1800 Wi-Fi booster is our runner-up pick for gaming. It’s quick, easy to use, and has a long reach.

It’s most effective with fast internet plans (1,000 Mbps or less) and for serious gamers. 

The TP-Link booster’s setup was incredibly simple. Simply connect to the Wi-Fi network and follow the Tether app’s step-by-step instructions to complete the installation. 

It almost took just as long to turn on our gaming PC as it did to set it up (less than 60 seconds).

We should also add that it wasn’t our first time using a Wi-Fi extender (we’ve tested many of them). It is, however, so simple that anybody can accomplish it.

The RE650 increased our Wi-Fi signal by 70 feet over Wi-Fi, the furthest of any we tested. And on Ethernet, the range rose to a whopping 80 feet.

A range of 70 to 80 feet is enough to cover large homes and allow you to game in every nook and cranny in your home (or even your detached garage)

The TP-Link RE605X had a maximum speed of 674.53 Mbps during testing on Ethernet (5 GHz band). It also hit 346.35 Mbps, 268.04 Mbps, and 257.04 Mbps on Wi-Fi at 5 feet, 15 feet, and 25 feet, respectively, on 5 GHz Wi-Fi.

Are these speeds adequate for gaming? For reference, 350 Mbps is theoretically enough to play nearly thirty online video games at the same time comfortably

So, you can play any online game with this repeater on Wi-Fi without any issues.  

The RE605X AX1800 has one disadvantage. It makes a second network if you don’t have a TP-Link router with OneMesh. As a result, when you move throughout your home using a gaming laptop, you’ll need to change networks to get the best connection.

But, if you connect the extender to the router via an Ethernet connection, you will have one network. So, if you don’t want to deal with multiple networks, consider connecting to Ethernet instead. 

The TP-Link RE605X AX1800 is a wonderful way to expand your home network to your gaming den. It has an excellent range, rapid data speeds, and a simple setup, making it excellent for gamers.

The RE605X’s single disadvantage is that it uses a secondary network with routers that don’t have OneMesh (unless you connect it to Ethernet).




#3 TP-Link RE650 AC2600 – Best Range

TP-Link RE650 AC2600
  • Coverage: ~70 feet
  • Max speed (Wi-Fi): 332.58 Mbps
  • Separate networks: Yes (not with TP-Link routers)
  • Recommended for:  Internet plans of 1,000 Mbps or lower
  • Wireless standard: Wi-Fi 5 AC2600 
  • Warranty: 3 years

Pros

  • Fantastic range
  • 3-year warranty
  • Great speed

Cons

  • Creates a second network

The TP-Link RE650 AC2600 has the best range of the extenders we tested. 

It’s ideal for gamers wanting to expand their home Wi-Fi network to corners of your home your router can’t reach. It gives a great range and fast speeds, as well as a simple setup.

If you have a TP-Link router, things are about to get even better. You can use OneMesh to create a single network. However, if you have a different router brand, you’ll need an Ethernet connection to form a single network. 

Otherwise, your home will have two networks, which can pose an issue when you move to different areas around your house with your smartphone or gaming laptop. 

The setup procedure took only a few minutes, and it was simple. We just had to download the Tether app and follow its instructions to expand our Wi-Fi coverage.

It has the most extensive coverage area of all the extenders we tested. It achieved 70 feet through Wi-Fi and 80 feet through Ethernet (using the 2.4 GHz band).

That’s more than enough range to reach your detached garage or even a gaming pad in your basement. And it’ll cover every room in a huge home.

Besides its great coverage, the RE650 is fast too. At five feet, it had terrific speeds of:

  • 332.58 Mbps with Wi-Fi 
  • 657.23 Mbps with Ethernet

Both on the 5 GHz band. 

This is so quick that you may download huge video games (over 100 Gb), like Halo 5, in just a few hours. All while you’re downloading your next video game, and you can stream a 4k movie while you wait. 

The TP-Link RE605 AC2600 is an excellent extender for internet plans with 1000 Mbps or lower and if you’re gaming far away from your router. It has an amazing range, fast speeds, and an easy setup.

But it has a single, minor disadvantage in that it generates a second network (unless you use OneMesh or Ethernet).




#4 Netgear EX7300 AC2200 – Mid-tier 

Netgear EX7300 AC2200
  • Coverage: ≈ 60 feet
  • Max speed (Wi-Fi): 324.58 Mbps
  • Separate networks: No
  • Recommended for:  Average internet plans (800 Mbps or less)
  • Wireless standard: Wi-Fi 5 AC2200
  • Warranty: 1-year

Pros

  • Fast
  • Combined networks

Cons

  • Not as easy to setup

If you have a slower internet plan (500 Mbps or less), the Netgear EX7300 is a decent all-around option and will save you a few bucks. 

From 5 feet, it clocked 324.58 Mbps with the 5 GHz band and 239.65 Mbps from 15 feet, and 254.25 Mbps from 25 feet using the same band during our tests.

To our surprise, it improved in speed at 25 feet compared to 15 feet.

For most casual gamers, these speeds are fast enough.

Connecting it to the router with Ethernet improved its performance considerably, more than doubling the throughput to 651.58 Mbps

Is 651.58 Mbps fast? Well, in 22 minutes and 11 seconds, it could download Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare (101 GB). In our book, that’s pretty fast. 

We’ll mention again that we tested these extenders with a Gigabit internet plan with a very powerful router (ASUS RT-AX88U). The extender’s speed will vary based on your internet plan and router. 

Its range was decent, about the average of the Wi-Fi boosters we tested, reaching around 60 feet. Its range is good enough to bring Wi-Fi to the majority of average-sized homes. 

The EX7300 also has a built-in mesh functionality, which means it combines with your router’s existing network.

This means you won’t have to go back and forth between networks when moving around the house with a gaming laptop (or your smartphone and tablet).

The EX7300’s configuration wasn’t bad. But we did have some trouble connecting to the router. However, it was resolved after a hard reset of the extender.

The Netgear EX7300 is an excellent all-around extender with decent performance and range for online gaming. It has combined networks and a simple installation as well.




#5 Lynksys RE7000 AC1900 – Value Option

Lynksys RE7000 AC1900
  • Coverage: 60 feet
  • Max speed (Wi-Fi): 320.83 Mbps 
  • Separate networks: Yes
  • Recommended for:  Internet plans of 500 Mbps or less
  • Wireless standard: Wi-Fi 5
  • Warranty: 3-years

Pros

  • Budget-friendly 
  • Great range
  • Decent speeds

Cons

  • Creates a separate network
  • Long setup

The Lynksys RE7000 AC1900 WiFi extender is our top pick for the most affordable model for gaming.

The RE7000 increased the strength of our Wi-Fi signal by 60 feet. It also boosted our Wi-Fi signal to 70 feet on Ethernet and delivered speeds of up to 320.83 Mbps at 5 feet on Wi-Fi with the 5 GHz band.

An extra 60 to 70 feet of Wi-Fi range will allow you to game out of any room in a large, multi-story home and even a detached garage.

The speed increased to 519.73 Mbps when connected via Ethernet at 5 feet. Most impressive.

Although these speeds are not as quick as other extenders on this list, they are fast enough for the majority of gamers.

You’ll be able to play Call of Duty, Halo 5, and watch a 4k movie, all while you’re logged into a Zoom meeting for work without any trouble.

With an ethernet connection, the Lynksys RE7000 may be directly linked to your modem, router, or laptop. This will provide you with the greatest possible speeds for gaming – which is ideal if you want to reduce lag and latency.

The Linksys app (and the web interface, too) makes setting up a breeze. The mobile app takes you through each step, making it more straightforward to set up.

The installation procedure took us around 10 minutes because of lengthy load times. It’s considerably longer than the few minutes it takes with other extenders.

The Lynksys RE7000 creates a secondary network. Most people only want one network in their house and don’t want to deal with switching between networks when traveling throughout it. This extender may not be appropriate for you if that’s the case.

However, if all you want to do is boost your Wi-Fi signal to connect to your gaming console or computer, this is an excellent option.

Overall, the Lynksys RE7000 AC1900 Wi-Fi extender is a great value choice because it’s one of the more affordable Wi-Fi extenders and yet provides reasonable speeds.




Do you need a Wi-Fi Extender?

You can try a few things before purchasing a Wi-Fi extender to increase the amount of coverage you have.

If possible, consider moving your router to a central location in your home. Or move your gaming station closer to the router itself. 

Also, if you’re gaming on a PS5 or Xbox Series X, sometimes installing the latest updates can help with your Wi-Fi connection. 

Or, you may need to upgrade your old modem. Test your modem’s speed by directly connecting a laptop to it with ethernet. If the speed is lower than what your plan provides, get a new one.

Check out our best modems for gaming guide for some recommendations. 

Finally, if your router is more than five years old, upgrading to a newer model may help you resolve your Wi-Fi dead spot problem.

Gaming Wi-Fi Extender Buying Guide

This is what every online gamer should consider before buying a Wi-Fi extender for their home network. For a more general extender buying guide, click here.

Match the Brand

We recommend getting a Wi-Fi extender from the same manufacturer as your router. 

Many routers and extenders from the same manufacturer can be linked together to make a single network (for example, OneMesh with TP-Link). That way, the setup is easier, you will have better compatibility, and the shortest lag while gaming. 

However, certain router brands don’t make extenders. For example, if you have an Arris router, you won’t be able to match an extender to it since Arris doesn’t make any. 

Wi-Fi 5 vs. Wi-Fi 6

The two main Wi-Fi standards today are Wi-Fi 5 and Wi-Fi 6.  

Wi-Fi 5, also known as 802.11ac, has less lag and handles more devices at once than the older Wi-Fi 4 standard, also known as 802.11n. 

On the other hand, Wi-Fi, 802.11n, is much faster than Wi-Fi 5 and is best for gamers who need low latency. 

So if you’re a serious gamer looking to get the best performance possible, we recommend opting for a Wi-Fi 6 extender over a Wi-Fi 5 one

Even if your router is Wi-Fi 5, we still recommend Wi-Fi 6 because it is backward compatible and will help future-proof your network. 

With that said, a Wi-Fi 5 extender will still give you excellent performance, and you’ll save a few bucks. 

Our Wi-Fi 5 vs. Wi-Fi 6 guide provides some additional considerations if you’re interested. 

What if my Router is Wi-Fi 4?

If you have a Wi-Fi 4 router, buy a new router rather than an extender

If you have long load times, lagging, or get bounced off of servers frequently, you need to upgrade your router first. 

In many cases, if you upgrade from a Wi-Fi 4 router, your Wi-Fi issues will disappear, and you’ll be joining new multiplayer games without issues. (Look for “802.11n” on your router’s label to determine if it is Wi-Fi 4.)

For some top options, read our best router recommendations here.

Dual-band vs. Tri-band

We recommend getting a tri-band extender if you’re looking for the best performance while gaming. 

A tri-band extender uses a 2.4 GHz and two 5 GHz bands that your router is broadcasting on, whereas a dual-band will only have one of each band. 

Dual-band routers are best for most people since they’re less expensive and easier to set up. But if you’re gaming on a PC or console and are looking for the best possible performance, a tri-band extender is best because it provides more bandwidth. 

Best results come from using the same SSID (Service Set Identifier) for both your router and extender. That way, your device will automatically connect to the best signal, no matter where you are in your house (if you’re gaming on a laptop, for example). 

For more info, check out our article on dual-band vs. tri-band.

Coverage

Every Wi-Fi booster will usually show its coverage on the product page and packaging. However, most of them are wrong. Some are overly aggressive, while others are too modest.

We discovered through our testing that the extenders we tested generally covered 70 to 120 percent of their claim

To guarantee that your Wi-Fi reaches your console or gaming PC, we recommend purchasing a Wi-Fi extender with a 30 percent longer range than the distance you actually need.

Keep in mind that your router will significantly impact the extender’s coverage. For example, your extender won’t have a great signal if your router is old and has poor coverage and speed. 

Also, avoid placing the extender too close to the router or too far away. Both of these variables result in reduced speed and coverage.

Connected to the Router Using Ethernet or Wi-Fi

For the best possible gaming experience, we recommend connecting your extender to your router using an Ethernet cable. This will give you the best possible performance and speeds. 

However, some people don’t want the extra cord running through their homes (unless you have Ethernet receptacles strategically placed in your walls). 

If you fall into this category, your best option will be to connect wirelessly. Just make sure your extender and router are in the range of each other without obstructions to avoid signal interference, which will negatively impact your gaming performance. 

So, what mode is best?

Ethernet mode is best. Ethernet gave us double the speed on average and about 20% more range in our test. 

If you’re looking for the best gaming experience, we recommend using an Ethernet connection. 

We also noticed that wired connections are more stable. So if you live in an area with a lot of Wi-Fi interference (like an apartment complex or condo) or have many devices constantly jumping on and off your network, we recommend sticking with Ethernet for gaming. 

Mesh Wi-Fi vs. Wi-Fi Extender/Repeater 

Wi-Fi extenders and mesh networks are two of the most common methods to expand your Wi-Fi range. While they both enhance network coverage and performance, they do so differently.

The main difference is that a Mesh network uses numerous nodes to create a large Wi-Fi bubble with no single router, whereas a Wi-Fi Repeater merely repeats an existing signal.

If you have an internet plan with a speed of 500 Mbps or lower and want to extend your coverage less than 60 feet, a WiFi repeater/extender is the best option.

On the other hand, if you have speeds of 1,000 Mbps or more, want the absolute best gaming performance, and want to extend your Wi-Fi over 60 feet, a Mesh System is our recommendation.

Of course, this is just our rule of thumb. You might choose one or the other for other reasons. 

For example, you might have two gamers outside your router’s range on opposite ends of your house. Or maybe you have lots of smart home devices. In those cases, a Mesh system could be better. 

To learn more, read our article on Mesh Wi-Fi vs. Wi-Fi Repeaters.

How to Set Up an Extender With Gaming

To start, download the extender’s mobile app to connect your Wi-Fi extender to your router.

Connect the extender to an outlet, and then power it on. Open the app on your smartphone, and follow the instructions onscreen.

Usually, it takes just a few minutes to set up a Wi-Fi extender. 

You may also utilize the WPS button on the extender to link it with your router. You can quickly connect your extender to your router by pressing the WPS button on both of them.

(The WPS button on most gateways is just above the Ethernet ports on the back or on the front and top.)

If you want to connect the devices via an Ethernet connection, you’ll need to set up the extender on a computer.

When you start any browser on a computer, you are taken to the setup page. Follow the on-screen instructions from there. The steps vary by brand and model.

For more info, check out our guide on how to set up a Wi-Fi extender.

FAQs

Here are the most common questions we get concerning Wi-Fi extenders and gaming. 

Does A Wi-Fi Extender Cause Lag in Video Games?

A good Wi-Fi Extender will cause minimal lag in online video games. But, if you have it connected to your router with Wi-Fi, that will introduce more latency than connecting with Ethernet. 

For the least amount of lag, connect your Wi-Fi extender to your router with an Ethernet cable and your gaming console (or computer) to the extender with an Ethernet cable too. 

Which is the best Wi-Fi Extender for Gaming?

The best Wi-Fi extender for online gaming is the one that gives you the best combination of speed, range, and features for your internet plan and your home. 

For example, if you have a slower internet plan (< 500 Mbps), the Lynksys RE7000 AC1900 might be best since you wouldn’t need an ultra-fast unit. 

But, our top recommendation is the Netgear EAX80 AX6000. Yes, it’s more expensive than other models on this list, but it has the best speed and nearly the best coverage. Plus, it makes a single network and is easy to set up.

Where should I install the Wi-Fi extender?

You should install your Wi-Fi extender about halfway between your router and the room you play video games.  

This will give you the best possible speed and minimize the number of dead spots in your home. 

It’s best to avoid installing your unit near other electronics since they can emit interference that will degrade performance.

Do I need a special Wi-Fi extender for gaming?

No, any good quality Wi-Fi 6 extender (like the Netgear EAX80 or TP-Link RE605X) will work for gaming. 

You don’t need one with a specific gaming mode; any good quality unit will work just fine. 

What is the best way to connect my Wi-Fi Extender for gaming?

The best way to connect your Wi-Fi extender is with an Ethernet cable. This will give you the best possible speed and eliminate any potential issues with interference. 

The Final Verdict

After a lot of in-depth testing and consideration, we concluded that the best Wi-Fi extender for online gaming is the Netgear EAX80 AX6000

It is the fastest Wi-Fi extender with ample range, and it uses the same network as your router– three things that are critical for a seamless online gaming experience. 

However, it took a bit longer to set up than other models and is a bit more costly. 

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