Often ISPs, such as Verizon Fios, will provide you with a router when you purchase your internet connection or package through them. While many people will be fine with the router provided, sometimes it can be a good idea to use your own router.
Top 5 Router Picks
The links above will take you direct to Amazon. Scroll down below to read more info on these routers
Why Use Your Own Router?
Running your own router on a service like Verizon Fios has a ton of benefits. This is because using your own router means you are able to choose the exact router, with the specific features and standards that you want for your network, instead of the one that comes with your package.
This could allow you to have a router with advanced features such as Tri Band 802.11ac (or even .11ad) wireless, more configurable settings or quite simply one with a design you prefer with extra ports.
However, before we start, a word of warning. Using your own router on Verizon Fios is not as simple a process as with some ISPs. Firstly, it seems in most cases, you must be setup to only receive your internet from Verizon Fios, not a package that includes a phone and/or TV services. Although, there are reports that this is possible with with package installations!
Secondly, it can be a bit of a tough process setting everything up, for a more in-depth guide about how to set your network up, please check out this link. Also before you start to mess around with your network or buy a new router, we strongly advise you to phone Verizon and check that everything on your network will work with your new router or the router you are considering buying. There is no 'one size fits all' solution here! There are many variables!
Set The Verizon Modem/Router To Bridge Mode!
A simpler option to replacing the Fios router, is to simply add a router to your network. To do this you will be making your Fios router a bridge that the internet passes through (you still need the Fios router - as it contains a built-in modem that is configured to talk to Verizon) to the Ethernet WAN port of the router that you want to use.
This is much easier than the first method and will simply require you to set up your Verizon router in bridge mode, adjust the LAN settings (turn off DHCP & Wireless) and connect your new router via Ethernet cable.
For DSL: please check out Verizon’s site for full details relating to the specific Verizon equipment you are using.
For Fiber: Check out this post on how to bridge your device.
Ok, this is the last time we'll mention it - call Verizon before attempting any of these methods!
Get the features you need with your own router
The main reason to use your own router with Verizon Fios is that using your own router gives you the ability to use the exact router you want. Whether that is because you have an existing router set up exactly the way you like it, or you want a router with features not available on the standard Verizon router.
You may even want to use a flashed DD-WRT router. This is where you need to add your own.
Best 802.11ac Routers For Verizon Fios
None of these routers are officially supported by Verizon. These are recommended routers based on the assumption Verizon have confirmed with you that it's possible to connect your own router to their service (see above) and that this can be done via Ethernet (to the WAN port).
Otherwise, this Verizon gateway could be the way to go. It's especially recommended for those requiring MoCA 2.0 around their home (your existing Verizon router may be MoCA 1.1 only - which could be a bottleneck). Check this article for more.
1. Netgear Nighthawk X10 AD7200 R9000 Wi-Fi Router
- Uses the 802.11ad standard for extra-fast speeds
- Tri-band and 10Gbps Ethernet
- Great Netgear software makes setting up and sharing a breeze
This brand new beast from Netgear is a frighteningly powerful router equipped with super-fast speeds and pretty much all the functions you could need from a router.
Its main selling point is that it is one of the few routers out there that offers Wireless AD which will give you speeds even faster than those available on Wireless AC. As well as this it is tri-band, has a 10Gbps SFP port, a quad-core CPU, and four enhanced active antennas.
Of course, all this technology comes at a premium and it is double the price of the other routers on this list. It will probably be complete overkill for a lot of people. However, if you want to ensure that you are buying one of the best, most feature filled-routers on the market, then you can’t go far wrong with this offering from Netgear.
2. Asus RT-AC68U Wireless AC1900 Dual Band Router
- Uses the 802.11ac standard
- Dual band and dual core
- Easy router setup using a web-based interface
While the Netgear Nighthawk X10 router above may put the other routers on this list in the shade a little bit, it is important to emphasize the fact that the others are still excellent, powerful, fast routers. Fit for most homes...
This offering from Asus offers features including 802.11ac wireless, beamforming, USB 3.0 and dual band. These features mean you will be able to get a fast wireless network throughout your house.
It also has extra features like QoS which can improve experiences like video calling by prioritizing certain applications that need a consistent wireless connection.
All in all, this is a very good router at a much cheaper price than the Netgear Nighthawk X10 and will be more than enough for most people.
3. TP-Link Archer C7 AC1750
- Uses the 802.11ac wireless standard
- Dual band
- Guest Network Access allows guests to share your wifi connection securely
Another 802.11ac router available here with all the features you would expect including dual band, and gigabit Ethernet and USB ports.
However, it is also set apart due to its six external antennas that should give you excellent service throughout your home. It also has some useful network management features including a guest mode to allow guests to securely connect to your network.
This router also comes in at a slightly cheaper price point than some of the other similar products out there which could give it an edge if you are looking to save a little of that hard earned cash!
4. Linksys WRT1900ACS Dual Band AC1900 Wi-Fi Router
- 802.11ac wifi and dual band
- 1.6Ghz dual core processor
- Support for OpenVPN
This offering from Linksys comes with a load of high-end features. Things that stand out include beamforming, which focuses your wifi signal to give a stronger connection to devices that are further away.
This is complimented by its 4 high-gain antennas that will help you obtain a good signal throughout your home or office.
It also has good software, including a smartphone app, that easily allows you to manage your network. This includes things like guest access, managing devices as well as allowing you to prioritize certain types of data (QoS).
5. Netgear Nighthawk AC1900 R7000
- Uses the 802.11ac standard
- Uses beamforming for improved connection strength
- Advanced quality of service
While this is no longer the flagship router from Netgear, it is still an incredible product that offers a ton of advanced features.
Pretty much everything you could want from an 802.11ac router is available including Beamforming, dual band, QoS, a 1GHz processor, and Gbps Ethernet connections.
It is an excellent router for gaming, and shouldn’t have much problem even when multiple devices are connected.
All in all this is still a great router and would be an excellent fit for most people wanting to upgrade.