Netgear’s Nighthawk series of routers are probably the best routers on the market, but they are also pretty expensive.
If you are looking for something similar but a little more basic than the D6400 Ac1600 might be a better router for you, featuring a decent enough design, but also with better than average performance.
That said because the D6400 is slightly more affordable than other routers, it does cut some corners featuring only USB 2.0 ports around the back and side, rather than the USB 3.0 ports that you will find on a lot of other modern routers.
That said, USB 3.0 won’t be all that important if you don’t want to use the file sharing features, or just the printer sharing.
On top of that, the router does also offer up full 3×3 MIMO 802.11ac WiFi, offering speeds of up to 1,300Mbit/sec, or up to 300Mbit/sec over an 802.11n WiFi connection. To boost that speed you will also find 128GB of memory, a dual-core processor, and 128MB of ROM inside, which makes this router more technical.
Alongside that, around the back, you will also a WAN port, internet port and a total of 4 Ethernet ports. We would prefer a couple more Ethernet ports, however, the addition of a WAN port is nice, as this means it will be a useful router for those who need an external modem, and those that don’t.
In terms of design, the D6400 looks extremely modern, yet simple, however, it’s definitely not as good looking as Netgear’s Nighthawk range.
The majority of the router’s design has been created using plastic, with a mirror-like surface on the front, that reflects the routers surroundings and likes to attract fingerprints, which can be rather annoying. Aside from that, you will find a small purple accent along the bottom of the front of the router.
Aside from that, there is a number of triangles shaped air vents around the back and sides of the device.
Setting up the router is extremely easy, much like Netgear’s other routers, it uses their Genie software to get you set up with just a few selections, or even automatically.
Within this software, you can check the status of the router, setup parental controls, attached USB storage, and fine-tune the settings to your liking.
The router can also take advantage of a range of other features like Beamforming and QoS, allowing you to get better connections to the devices that you want to prioritize, and increase the range, speed and reliability via beamforming+.
During our tests, we found that the Netgear D6400 worked great at the 5GHz, with awesome speeds from all around the house on 802.11n, but nothing too quick, however, on 2.4GHz these speeds did drop tremendously.
So this isn’t a router for someone who wants great speeds, Netgear has the Nighthawk range for that, the D6400 is actually for those who want a router that will upgrade their current one, but won’t cost a huge amount.