The Best Budget Wi-Fi Router Under 1k

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If you were asked how will your day be without any use of internet/Wi-Fi what will your answer be? At the first instant, you might agree you can live without any of those for one day. That’s bearable for most of us but think once can we possibly complete your everyday chores and office work without any connection with the internet. The simples answer will be a simple ‘No’. And the same was the result of a survey carried out by Direct Line by Opinium Research online. best budget Wi-Fi router

To keep our connectivity secure with the outside world we certainly require a trustworthy Wi-Fi router. There are many Wi-Fi routers available on the market ranging from basic home users to big corporate giants. It might be a little confusing for some users which one to opt for or which one to discard.

For that purpose, I and our testing team conducted our testing on at least of 15 Wi-Fi routers for 48 hours and concluded that TP-Link TN-WR841N is the best budget Wi-Fi router under Rs.1000. There are 4 other routers in the genre gave a quite tough competition to our best pick and secured a place in this list. Try to go through our views on all of them before making any decisions.

 

TP-Link TL-WR841N Wireless-N Router

After thorough and stressful testing of many Wi-Fi routers, we have decided TP-Link TL-WR841N to be our best pick. It is very fast reliable for both the short and long, having a user-friendly web-based design for controlling the settings, and a great sturdy design.  TL-WR841N was the clear winner after winning through all the stress testing and drop testing it went through and still remained functional. With an easy to setup console and out of box working option with such low price point simply made it the best budget Wi-Fi router you can get under Rs.1000.

Design and Build

TL-WR841N is made out of good quality plastic giving it a quite sturdy build. The design of the router is quite simple and elegant certainly not a flashy one. The router is available only in white color with black antennas on both sides which actually looks nice.

Best Budget Wi-Fi Router TL-WR841N

To test the durability we have done many drop test of the router and found it to be sturdy enough to survive an 8 ft. drop and still functioning. Behind the router, there is a mesh-like build of with many holes present which actually keeps the router cooler. There are 4 standing pads and 2 mounting holes behind the router to give it stability for both wall mounting and standalone placing.

TL-WR841N Ports

Behind of the router, you will find 5 RJ-45 Jacks (1 in and 4 outs). One power in port, one power switch and one reset button (placed inside a hole, have to use a pin to access it). The antennas are made of pretty good quality and do bend/rotates in all directions (like that I have to say :P). Overall the build quality is quite premium and perfectly suitable for home usage.

Range and Connectivity

As best budget Wi-Fi router our best pick should be able to provide at least 99% connectivity and at least good signal strength to 2 floors. TL-WR841N is really keeping its promise there. With the 100% signal strength, it is able to penetrate at least of 4 walls (we have an old house so very thick walls) and provided at least of 60%-70% signal strength to the 2nd floor.

We have tested to every nook and corner of our ground floor and found no issue getting signal from even the furthest corner (placed the router in the middle of the house). On the first floor signal dropped down a little bit it was like 80%-90% but at the furthest corner, it went to 65%-70%.

If you live in an apartment build and want to share the connection for 2-3 floors this router will work great as apartment buildings don’t have that much of thick walls. But be sure to change your default signal strength to 100% to get the full potential. The double antenna setup does obviously enhance the signal strength without interfering with each other.

User Interface

An easy and straightforward user interface for home users has always been a specialty for TP-link. The router firmware might not be the latest one out of the box if so please download the updated firmware and update it or you can get in touch with the customer care to get it updated. The user interface was very straightforward and packed with all the necessary features.

Such features like MAC cloning, MAC filtering parental control, bandwidth allocation, port forwarding are already included in the router so you need not worry about that much. You can also backup and restore your setting whenever needed. Even if you are a first timer you can easily use this user interface with ease. If you are facing any issue with using this router interface comment below we will try to solve that.

You can check the user interface in this below link.

https://www.tp-link.com/resources/simulator/TL-WR841ND_V10/Index.htm

Warranty

TP-link providing a massive 3 years warranty with TL WR841ND router. So if you planning to use a budget Wi-Fi router for long years without any kind of worries our best pick is your thing. TP-link also provides a very good customer service.

They will get you with a remote connection if firmware or anything needed to be updated. If you are facing any kind of issue simply call them and they will try their best to sort it out. They are having a very good policy and swift response time to get your router repaired or replaced if damaged. You can simply live a life without worrying too much about your connection going down (unless your ISP decides it :P)

TP-Link TL-WR841N Wireless-N Router

Score : 9.5

"Wireless N speed up to 300Mbps ideal applications for video streaming, online gaming VoIP, web browsing and multi-tasking."

Pros:

  • Double Antenna
  • Sturdy Body
  • 4x RJ-45 Out Ports

Cons:

  • LED is dim
  • Takes time while booting

Our Ratings

  • Build 85%
  • Connectivity 90%
  • Style 70%
  • Accessibility 90%

Xiaomi Mi 3C Router (White)

 

Another sleek competitor of TL WR841ND for the title of best budget wi-fi router is Mi 3C router. If our best pick is unavailable or you want to go for somewhat more stylish router go for this one. Mi 3c router claimed its place due to great design, stylish looks, and mobile app interface at this price point. A little bit higher price and not so good after sales service put this router into 2nd place. If you are a tech geek and want to try out this preferably new router in the market you will be amazed at the performance.

Design and Build

The Mi 3C router does testify its classy style and aristocracy with the sleek housing body and milky white matte finish. The router is very sleek only 107 mm of thickness and weighing 240 grams. There are 4 rubber pads under the router body to give it stability for standing. The front portion of the router is heavier than the back side so it will not flip because of the antennas. A word of caution this router is not built for wall mounting. We tested while putting it on a top shelf in our house (I liked it very much so couldn’t do any drop test sorry for that 🙁  ).

Mi-3C-Router

I think you have already noticed in the photos. Yes, this is the most enchanting feature of the router it is featuring 4 antennas of 2.4 GHz band which gives it an extraordinary signal strength and great looks. It might look like a router that can be chosen by gamers but we recommend it (you will find out soon). The antennas don’t look like our regular router antennas they are bit block like in design and very stylish.

There is also a mesh-like a holey design at the back of the router which will provide airflow and keep the router cool from overheating.

Mi 3C Backside

Now let’s talk about some flaws. The router is having a single LED installed so you will not be able to know what your connection status is or what is happening with the router (unless you master the LED blinking code). That is a major con for some of the users. You have to continuously check those apps for getting the status of the router. Also, there is only 2x RJ-45 out ports which might be a big issue for some people.

 

Range and Connectivity

At this price point, we could not complain about the range of this router at all. The same testing was performed with this router too and we received quite satisfactory results. We turned on the wall penetrating feature of the router before starting the testing and suggest you do the same if you are palling to use it for multiple floors.

Mi 3C Router Ports

The 4 antenna setup boosts the signal strength by a lot and we got quite a good signal throughout the ground floor. It was like 80%-90% on the first floor generally but corner sides it dropped a bit. On the second floor, the connection strength dropped to 40%-50% which is expected. Please keep in mind the 4 antennas doesn’t boost your signal coverage area (maybe a 20%-30% of single antenna router) but I do boost your signal strength.

During the test long-distance phase, we observed some connectivity drops. We thought like it was an issue with the router but then we figured out the 2.4 GHz connection was getting crowded with our other routers and test keyboard that we were testing in the same room. If you face such scenario then I would recommend getting a 5 GHz band router (can be more expensive).

User Interface

Xiaomi always brought the most user-friendly UI all the times. Let it be the phone or this Mi 3C router the UI will simply make you fall in love with it. The router is having its own Xiaomi site login UI which can be accessed through any web browser. And there is also an Android app and iOS app for accessing the router and changing the setting through your smartphone. You can easily change the QoS(quality of Service), activate the parental control, do port forwarding, mac cloning, change firewall setting, allocate bandwidth with both web UI and Apps.

Mi 3C User Interface

The settings are easy enough to navigate and find your desired page. But you will not find some of the settings with the web application, they are only available in android/iOS. Like you turn off the led only via app not via the web browser. And we recommend you to disable the UPNP settings (turned on by default) if you are not using it. UPnP (Universal Plug and Play) we do not use much for such kind of router and that might cause a security vulnerability. So make sure to close that before using it.

Warranty

 Mi 3C Unboxed

Warranty is one more reason that Mi 3C is the 2nd best budget Wi-Fi router of our list. Xiaomi providing an only 1-year warranty with this router. It would be a good deal if Xiaomi had better customer service centers present in India. The process is very tedious and slow if something went wrong with your router. But recently we have observed that Xiaomi is trying to provide somewhat better service to customers by opening more and more service centers and hand to hand replacement warranty. We talked with several users regarding any issues and most of them got their router replaced in the service center at one go. But still, the warranty period should be a bit more.

Mi 3C Router (White)

Score : 9.2

"4 high-performance antennas: Supports up to 300Mbps with 802.11n. Forget Wi-Fi dead zones and dropped connections. "

Pros:

  • 4x Antennas
  • World-Class Style
  • Android App Support

Cons:

  • No indicator about internet availability
  • No wall mount
  • Only 2x LAN output

Our Ratings

  • Build 80%
  • Connectivity 90%
  • Style 95%
  • Accessibility 85%

D-Link Dir-600M Wireless Router

If both of our top 2 picks are unavailable and you are still in a dire need of a budget wi-fi router, then the next viable choice for you will be D-Link DIR-600M. This router is very popular among newcomers and d-link fans. With a single band antenna and basic input and output ports, this old school router is still thriving among best budget Wi-Fi routers.

 D-Link Dir-600M

With a very cheap price and all the basic setups, I started using this router 6 years back and still using this without any kind of issue. This is actually my personal router and it is turned on 24/7 (with occasional power downs for 5-10 minutes). And still to this day I cannot complain about anything with the performance at this price point.

Design and Build

The router build quality is very normal and quite hard plastic material is being used for the outer housing. The material is quite sturdy and is having a glossy finish. The router itself is really very lightweight and wall mount capable. The single antenna can be moved and bend in all the ways and it provides a professional low profile looks to the router.

The router is having all the necessary LEDs present on them which will make it easier to understand if anything is wrong with the connection or not. There are 7 LED lights in front of the router 4x RJ-45 out connection indicator, 1x internet connection, 1x power status, 1x wi-fi status. It is very easy to understand in which segment any issue is happening if anything observed.

Dir-600M Back-side Mesh

At the back of the router itself there are 4x RJ-45 out ports(great for gamers), 1x RJ-45 in, 1x power in, and 1x reset button residing inside a hole. There is no physical switch of the button that comes with the router which in my opinion is a bit downfall but not a deal breaker.

Range and Connectivity

The router really does hold its ground. The range coverage is outstanding and the signal strength is also good enough to give you a seamless performance. We managed the same testing with this one also similar to our previous two best budget picks. The router provided a seamless connection throughout the testing phase (common I was using it for 6 years now) we got the nearly same performance as our best pick but the wall penetration was a little bit lower than the Mi 3C but this router is a beast. We took our test a little bit further and tried to access from our neighbor house (not right next to us). And putting the router in the 2nd floor it worked like a charm.

 D-Link Dir-600M Ports

We haven’t faced any kind of connection drop or not connectivity during testing. But if there are more than 5-7 walls the signal strength drops a bit like other routers. We recommend keeping the router in 2nd floor to have a good Wi-Fi coverage to each floor (1, 2, 3).

User Interface

D-Link is also providing a hassle free, straightforward user interface with Dir-600M. The user interface is easy to navigate through and very straightforward. You can change the basic settings like port forwarding, mac filtering, mac cloning, QOS, parental control can be easily found on this router.

You can also backup your settings and restore them if needed. If the router doesn’t come with the latest firmware out of the box then you can download the latest firmware from D-Link website and update by yourself or you can call to D-Link customer care and they will update the firmware for you.

Warranty

Similar to our best pick D-Link is also providing a massive 3 years of warranty with this router and trust my words they provide great after sales service. Till date, D-Link customer support never lets me down on any kind of situation. You can simply call them or mail them to get your problem resolved. I prefer calling them for the faster response.

D-Link Dir-600M Wireless Router

Score : 8.5

"The DIR-600 Wireless N 150 Home Router is an attractive, high-performance router that makes it easy to share your broadband Internet connection with all your devices."

Pros:

  • Cheap Price
  • Very quick boot time
  • No heating issue

Cons:

  • No wall mount
  • No power button
  • The patch wire is short
  • Single Antenna

Our Ratings

  • Build 90%
  • Connectivity 80%
  • Style 70%
  • Accessibility 90%

 

TP-Link TL-WR740N Wireless Router (white)

TL-WR740N

Our next pick for best budget wi-fi router is TP-Link TL-WR740N which is a single antenna version of our best pick. We recommend you to go for this router only and only if the top 3 routers are unavailable. With a pocket-friendly price and multiple RJ-45 outlets, this router is quite efficient for home users. But do not consider the same connectivity and signal strength as our best pick. This router is not just a single antenna version of our best pick. This router is a whole different one.

Design and Build

The router is built with fairly cheap plastic. The build quality is not good enough to last longer or it will have a hard time surviving any major drops. The router design and outer housing look similar to TL-WR841N but the quality is not the same. The router quite on the heavier side but it doesn’t feel premium at all.

TP-Link TL-WR740N

TL-WR740N is also having mesh-like design at the bottom of the router which makes the internal components cooler. The router is having all the necessary LEDs for users to determine if there is anything wrong with any segments or not. At the back of the router, you will find 4x RJ-45 out ports, 1x RJ-45 in, 1x power in, and 1x safety hole. The router can be wall mounted safely as there are 2x mounting holes present. A word of advice take extra precaution the router should not fell from anywhere.

 TL-WR740N Bottom Mesh

Range and Connectivity

It gives the good range a bit less than DIR-600M. But during testing and also from the previous experience of one of our tester we found too much connection drops. If you are having 1-2 router working in the same room as this one there is a very good chance you will get connection drops as the networking bands are getting congested. And the router is not having enough signal strength to keep the connection up. We used the router for 2 days continuously to find out more and we observed like 15-18 connection drops while another router is present in the same vicinity.

TL-WR740N Ports

With this kind of performance, we would suggest only get this router as a last resort. This router will also provide enough of LAN ports to connect multiple computers (hardly anyone does that nowadays).

User Interface

TP-Link provides a great user interface that was discussed before in our best pick section. TL-WR740N is also having similar web user interface that enables you to manage port forwarding, mac filtering, parental control etc. If you want a simulator demo of the user interface please check the link below.

https://www.tp-link.com/resources/simulator/TL-WR740N(UN)6.0%20simulator/Index.htm

Warranty

TP-link is providing 3 years manufacturer’s warranty with this product. But the warranty is only limited to technical or manufacture defects. Any kind of physical damage will not be considered for warranty claim. TP-link surely provides top class after sales service but they are very strict with their TOC, it will be useless to ask them for any physical damage policies.

 

TP-Link TL-WR740N Wireless Router

Score : 7.8

"The TL-WR740N is a combined wired/wireless network connection device integrated with internet-sharing router and 4-port switch."

Pros:

  • Offers dual band
  • RJ-45 Ethernet port available

Cons:

  • No detachable antenna
  • Only 1 color available

Our Ratings

  • Build 80%
  • Connectivity 90%
  • Style 70%
  • Accessibility 85%

 

Tenda TE-N3 Wireless-N150 Router

If all our other picks are out of stock/unavailable and you are on a tight budget but willing to get the budget wi-fi router for your basic needs, you should go with Tenda TE-N3. This small piece of hardware is a stripped down version of a full sized router. Having a limited connectivity range of 35-40ft radius and a limited port option (1x LAN out) this router is mostly for WI-FI user only.

Design and Build

The router is having a good build quality considering the price range. This is far most the cheapest router in the entire list of best budget Wi-Fi routers. The white and black body with a glossy top finish. We haven’t performed any drop test to determine the durability but the material really felt very good and premium. The overall size of the router is like one of your palms with a height of 2.5 cm and width of 9.6 cm and weighing only 77.1 gram. There is only one antenna present on the top right side of the router which is also built with a good quality material.

Tenda TE-N3

We recommend you to mount it to a wall as wall mounting is available and the router is also very lightweight. You will not even feel the presence of it in the room. A perfect item to use an as repeater also.

Range and Connectivity

TE-N3 Ports

The router covers a lot of areas considering the size of it. We had to test this one in a duplex build and it performed very well. Every area of that apartment we went we received a fair connection. But to mention here we placed the router at the middle of the room (at the middle not on the floor :D) and everywhere we got a fairly good connection with closed doors also. The router performance decrease with the presence of blocking wall. It does not penetrate walls very well to get your signal transmitted.

User Interface

Tenda a Chinese giant also providing a straightforward user interface to the users. You can control the bandwidth, do port forwarding and all the simple things this router has to offer. You do not have to wander around the web and search through the interface millions of times to find your desired settings. Please check their web simulator of router UI below.

http://simulator.tendacn.com/

Warranty

Tenda also providing 3 years warranty for TE-N3 for any kind of manufacturing defects. But I must warn you Tenda customer care service procedure is very slow. If you are having a defective product then they will replace your product on the spot if available. But if not available you will have to wait until their shipments arrive (might take 1 week to 1.5 months). And the customer care executives we face were very unprofessional and rude. They didn’t know to talk with customer properly but things changed when we asked to talk to a supervisor. We were treated like kings over the phone. Every time the case might not be that so if you are going to go for this product keep this into consideration.

Tenda TE-N3 Unboxed

Tenda TE-N3

Score : 6

"TE-N3 is an 802.11n compliant mini wireless router that delivers up to 4x faster wireless speeds and 3x farther range than 802.11g while staying backward compatible with 802.11g/ b devices."

Pros:

  • Small Size
  • Small in size
  • Easy to configure

Cons:

  • Only one LAN port
  • Only 1 LED indicator
  • The coverage is limited

Our Ratings

  • Build 70%
  • Connectivity 90%
  • Style 70%
  • Accessibility 70%
Footnotes

That’s all folks. This is our brief review of Best Budget Wi-Fi router under Rs.1000. All these items are below 1k at the time of writing this blog. The current price might differ right now. There are several routers we have taken into considerations but these we found most promising to be on this list. If you disagree with any of these products please let us know by comments or Facebook. We do value our reader’s opinion.


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