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Home > How To > Dual-band router vs. single-band router: which one to choose?
Dual-band router vs. single-band router: which one to choose?

Dual-band router vs. single-band router: which one to choose?

By  Matthieu Andre 2018-07-05 7971 0

Routers have been a necessary digital appliance in our daily life. The performance of a router has a great influence on our Wi-Fi online experience, so choosing a right router is very important. Then one of the big questions comes - “Should I choose a dual-band router or single-band router?” That’s just the matter we are talking about in this post.

 

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There are many differences between the dual-band routers and single-band routers. Now, we will dig out these differences mainly from the aspect of identification, price, network speed, performance and compatibility.  


How to identify the dual-band routers and single-band routers?


Learn to identify whether the routers are dual-band or single-band is the first step to know routers. Wireless routers are either single-band or dual-band. The way to identify them is simple:


Single-band router uses the 2.4GHz band and is limited to one wireless signal.


Dual-band router uses two bands: 2.4GHz and 5GHz, which means that they transmit two simultaneous wireless signals, providing a better performance, and compared to a single-band router, a dual-band router is easier to set up.


dual-band router can transmit both 2.4GHz and 5GHz


Dual-band routers vs. single-band routers: price


An obvious difference between the dual-band routers and single-band routers is price.  


Single band router is cheaper and won't include modern features, like APP-based monitoring or device prioritization.


Dual-band router is significantly more expensive than a single-band router, sometimes two to three times the price of a single-band router.


Therefore, optimizing your network speed or saving the cost will depend on the Wi-Fi router you choose, please visit our webpage related to the best wireless routers 2018.


Dual-band routers vs. single-band routers: network speed


Despite the price, there is a big difference on network speed of the two types of routers.   


Single-band router is limited in speed to the internet connection and the speed of the router itself. Therefore, the user may encounter frequent connection issues or interferences, which can reduce Wi-Fi speed or stability.


Dual-band router support both bands (2.4GHz and 5GHz) and provide faster speed and flexibility. Therefore, the dual-band router avoids connection issues or interferences and offers more stability. The dual-band can also reach a signal up to 100x the wireless bandwidth, as showed on the picture cf-below.


Dual-band routers vs. single-band routers: network speed


Dual-band routers vs. single-band routers: performance


There is no doubt that the dual-band routers do better than the single-band routers in performance. But they can meet our different needs.  


Single-band router has shorter range and the signal strength is not strong enough. It's perfectly designed for people who are looking for web browsing APP, checking mails, watching videos.


Dual-band router has longer range and better signal strength, and despite the broadcasting on two different bands, it is capable of switching automatically when needed. Due to its strong signal, the dual-band router is suitable for online high resolution gaming, video streaming and high resolution audio.


Dual-band routers vs. single-band routers: performance


Besides, to improve the coverage area, you can also use a Wi-Fi extender to improve the signal strength. A dual-band extender will be more suitable since it can broadcast on two different bands.


dual-band WiFi Range extender

 

High Gain 2.4GHz 300Mbps USB WiFi 2.0 Range Extender

High Gain 2.4GHz 300Mbps USB WiFi 2.0 Range Extender - BLACK
$13.52    
(81)

 

Vonets VRP5G 2.4G / 5G Dual Band WiFi Repeater

Vonets VRP5G 2.4G / 5G Dual Band WiFi Repeater - COLORMIX EU PLUG
$24.96    
(41)

Dual-band routers vs. single-band routers: compatibility


One important thing you should consider when choosing a router is the compatibility. As not all devices support both 2.4GHz band and 5GHz band.


Single-band router is compatible with most wireless cards and receivers, as they broadcast on the 2.4 GHz band, which is common.


Dual-band router that use both 2.4GHz and 5GHz may experience wireless connection to 2.4GHz compatible devices and 5GHz compatible devices simultaneously, such as smartphones, computers networking, tablet PC accessories. However, if there are no 5GHz compatible devices in the covering range, it can just use 2.4GHz.


Sum things up


Now, let's make a summary on the main features of the two types of routers.

 

Router types
Single-band router
Dual-band router
Suitable for
Small home
Large home
Designed for
Web browsing, email, videos watching
Online high resolution gaming, video streaming
Covering area
Small
Very large
The number of connected devices
Few
Many
Signal strength
Medium
Very strong
Suitable for high Wi-Fi dense area (apartment...)
No
Yes
Operating frequency
2.4GHz
2.4GHZ and 5GHz
Cost
Economical
Expensive

The verdict


Therefore, to choose a right router, you should take these factors into account: your demand for network speed, the application scenarios, the compatible devices, as well as the price.    


If you are looking for opportunity cost, live in a small place and just need a Wi-Fi signal for your daily routine, we recommend you to buy a single-band router. However, frequent disconnection will occur and signal interference will be lower or even congested.


If you are looking for a stronger signal, live in a bigger place and want to optimize your internet speed at home or office, it can be done when you switch to a dual-band router. Compatible with wireless devices, it enables customization of wireless network settings and also provides a solution to signal interference. However, a dual-band router is a bit costly, and you may face compatibility issues as there may be some devices don't support 5GHz band.

 

 

 You may also want to read:
 What is a router and how to choose one?
 Wi-Fi connection with router drops frequently? Here comes quick fix solutions!
 Video: Xiaomi Mi R1D WiFi Router – not just a router, a 1TB media hub!

 

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