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The 4 Best WiFi Mesh Systems of 2023

We tested WiFi mesh systems from TP-Link, Nest, eero, and more to find the best mesh router for your home
Best WiFi Mesh Systems of 2023
Credit: David Wise
By Matt Spencer and Becca Glades  ⋅  Jan 17, 2023

Boosting your WiFi just got easier. After researching over 50 top WiFi Mesh Systems available on the market, we bought the 10 most compelling models to test head-to-head and rank to help you find the best. We rated and scored the ease of use of each system and evaluated the different features and functions they offer. We thoroughly tested the 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz throughput, along with the WiFi range by streaming movies as far away from the router as we could get. Read on to see which system delivered the best range performance and seamless connection experience, which is the easiest to get up and running, and which option has the most features.

Networking essentials have become a standard in the modern world. If you are considering a WiFi Mesh System, then you might also find our review of WiFi Extenders interesting, and our review of powerful single point Wireless Routers, too. If you're in the early stages of setting up your home office or perhaps you need a product to up your productivity and efficiency, we've reviewed various office-related products to help your search, from the best printers to our favorite keyboards, and many other categories in between. Check out what we've tested and rated as top-notch office products so you can make an informed buying decision.

Editor's Note: This WiFi Mesh System review was updated to include four new tested units and retests of old favorites on January 12, 2023.

Top 10 Product Ratings

Displaying 1 - 5 of 10
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Awards Editors' Choice Award Top Pick Award  Best Buy Award Top Pick Award 
Price $270 List
$159.99 at Amazon
$450 List
$151.00 at Amazon
$450 List
$293.99 at Amazon
$338 List
$126.99 at Amazon
$450 List
$349.99 at Amazon
Overall Score Sort Icon
79
76
63
62
60
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Pros LED on/off, great 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz throughput, parental controlsGreat range, easy-to-use mobile app, LED on/offGood 5 GHz throughput, offers 6 GHz signalGreat QoS and parental controls, inexpensiveGreat QoS options, parental controls, separation of 2.4 and 5 GHz, computer or app setup available
Cons Limited QoS optionsExpensive, no PC interfaceExpensiveNot WiFi 6 compatibleexpensive, only two nodes
Bottom Line This model comes with an exceptional performance that won't break the bankThis pricey router is worth the investment with its great performance and advanced featuresAlthough costly, this model is nice if you have a lot of devices that can take advantage of the 6 GHz channelA top-performing WiFi mesh system that works great in smart homes and won't break the bankA top-performing unit that is easy to use with great features
Rating Categories TP-Link Deco X20 Linksys Atlas Pro 6... Netgear Orbi (RBK752) Google Nest WiFi ASUS ZenWiFi (XT8)
2.4 GHz Throughput (35%)
8.8
5.6
4.4
4.4
5.2
5 GHz Throughput (35%)
8.4
9.2
9.2
8.4
6.4
Range (20%)
6.5
8.5
5.5
5.5
5.5
Ease of Use (10%)
6.2
7.1
4.7
6.5
8.1
Specs TP-Link Deco X20 Linksys Atlas Pro 6... Netgear Orbi (RBK752) Google Nest WiFi ASUS ZenWiFi (XT8)
Wi-Fi Version WiFi 6 WiFi 6 WiFi 6 WiFi 5 WiFi 6
Wireless Specification Dual Band Dual Band Tri Band Dual Band Dual Band
Frequency 5 GHz
2.4 GHz
5 GHz
2.4 GHz
6 GHz
5 GHz
2.4 GHz
5 GHz
2.4 GHz
5 GHz
2.4 GHz
Processor 1.0 GHz Dual-Core 1.0 GHz dual-Core 1.4 GHz quad-core 1.4 GHz Quad-core 64-bit ARM 1.5 GHz quad-core
Memory N/A 256 MB Flash
512MB RAM
512MB NAND Flash
1GB RAM
4 GB Flash
1 GB RAM
256 MB Flash
512 MB RAM
MU-MIMO Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
OFDMA Yes Yes N/A No Yes
Beamforming Explicit only Explicit only Implicit
Explicit
Explicit only Implicit
Explicit
Security WPA/WPA2/WPA3 - Personal
WPA/WPA2 - Enterprise
WPA/WPA2/WPA3 - Personal
WPA/WPA2 - Enterprise
WPA/WPA2/WPA3 - Personal
WPA/WPA2 - Enterprise
WPA/WPA2/WPA3 - Personal
WPA/WPA2 - Enterprise
WPA/WPA2 - Personal
WPA/WPA2 - Enterprise
LAN Ports Available 1 3 3 - router
1 - satellite
1 3
USB Ports None None None None 1
USB-A 3.0
Antenna 2 - Internal 5 - Internal N/A N/A 6 - Internal
Wall Mountable No No No No No
Wireless On/off button No No No No No
Led on/off Yes Yes No Yes No
2.4 GHz 9 ft Unobstructed 144 Mbps 105 Mbps 77 Mbps 81 Mbps 85 Mbps
2.4 GHz 9 ft Obstructed 137 Mbps 77 Mbps 84 Mbps 78 Mbps 86 Mbps
2.4 GHz 35 ft Unobstructed 121 Mbps 74 Mbps 71 Mbps 66 Mbps 78 Mbps
2.4 GHz 35 ft Obstructed 100 Mbps 80 Mbps 66 Mbps 68 Mbps 79 Mbps
2.4 GHz 70 ft Obstructed 20 Mbps 21 Mbps 17 Mbps 17 Mbps 19 Mbps
5.0 GHz 9 ft Unobstructed 365 Mbps 398 Mbps 353 Mbps 316 Mbps 328 Mbps
5.0 GHz 9 ft Obstructed 360 Mbps 309 Mbps 356 Mbps 314 Mbps 302 Mbps
5.0 GHz 35 ft Unobstructed 271 Mbps 348 Mbps 308 Mbps 315 Mbps 311 Mbps
5.0 GHz 35 ft Obstructed 303 Mbps 331 Mbps 312 Mbps 313 Mbps 265 Mbps
5.0 GHz 70 ft Obstructed 52 Mbps 119 Mbps 49 Mbps 89 Mbps 39 Mbps


Best Overall Mesh System


TP-Link Deco X20


79
OVERALL
SCORE
  • 2.4 GHz Throughput 8.8
  • 5 GHz Throughput 8.4
  • Range 6.5
  • Ease of Use 6.2
Claimed Coverage for 3 Units: 5800 sq. ft. | Wired Backhaul: Yes
REASONS TO BUY
Easy to install
WiFi 6-compatible
Inexpensive
REASONS TO AVOID
Minimal QoS options

For a top-tier WiFi Mesh System to extend the range of your network, the TP-Link Deco X20 is a champ. This mesh system is exceptionally easy to set up, and its companion app offers all the features we could ask for. You can monitor your network status, check the placement of satellite nodes, and set up parental controls to limit network access or block content. The router and nodes are minimal and sleek, with 2 WAN/LAN ports on the back of each for hardwired devices or for setting up wired Ethernet backhaul. This system is also WiFi 6-compatible, making it more future-proof than other routers in this review. It performed fairly well in our range test, and you should get solid data throughput for streaming or gaming with this AX1800 router. We also like that this system is expandable with additional nodes and compatible with other TP-Link Deco models if you need additional coverage.

We weren't overly impressed with this system's QoS. While we were pleased to see it included, the options were lacking. The system only allows you to prioritize upload and download speeds. All things considered, this is an excellent performing unit that won't break the bank.

Read More: TP-Link Deco X20 Review

wifi mesh system - best overall mesh system
If you are looking for the best, we think this router is hard to beat.
Credit: David Wise

Best Bang for the Buck


Google Nest WiFi


62
OVERALL
SCORE
  • 2.4 GHz Throughput 4.4
  • 5 GHz Throughput 8.4
  • Range 5.5
  • Ease of Use 6.5
Claimed Coverage for 2 Units: 5500 sq. ft. | Wired Backhaul: Yes
REASONS TO BUY
High maximum throughput
Great coverage
Great for Google-based smart homes
REASONS TO AVOID
Not WiFi 6 compatible

The Google Nest WiFi Router system is a great choice for those seeking a premium WiFi mesh system for a Google-based smart home. Compatible with both Google WiFi and Google Nest Points, you can mix and match to get the perfect network for your needs and the layout of your home. We tested using a trio of Google Nest Routers and saw some of the best ranges in line with their impressively high claimed coverage area. This system should also have enough data throughput for most users, allowing you to get the most of the bandwidth you pay for. The routers are sleek and discreet enough to blend into the background, with each node having a pair of gigabit ports for any hardwired connection or wired backhaul. You also have plenty of features in the Google Home app, allowing you to optimize your network, blacklist devices, or filter content — even allowing you voice control over your network using the Google Assistant.

Unfortunately, this system is not WiFi 6 compatible. This might be concerning if you're looking to future-proof your home or have a number of devices that run off of WiFi 6. However, we've found that many devices are still not WiFi 6 capable. So, if you don't plan on immediately upgrading to WiFi 6-capable devices, this might not be a problem. Despite this somewhat minor flaw, we wholeheartedly recommend this system to anyone who wants the best without breaking the bank.

Read More: Google Nest WiFi Review

wifi mesh system - best bang for the buck
The Nest router is a top-tier mesh system without breaking the bank.
Credit: David Wise

Best Coverage


Linksys Atlas Pro 6 (MX5503)


76
OVERALL
SCORE
  • 2.4 GHz Throughput 5.6
  • 5 GHz Throughput 9.2
  • Range 8.5
  • Ease of Use 7.1
Claimed Coverage for 2 Units: 6000 sq. ft. | Wired Backhaul: Yes
REASONS TO BUY
Easy installation
User-friendly app
REASONS TO AVOID
Expensive

This WiFi mesh system has all the bells and whistles, with WiFi 6 compatibility, MU-MIMO, and OFDMA, the Linksys Atlas Pro 6 is one of the most future-proof products in our lineup. The system is easily set up through the Linksys app, which walks you through the process step-by-step. The app includes great features like parental controls, WiFi settings, and device prioritization. This mesh system was one of the best performers in our lineup, leading the group in our range test. We were able to walk an impressive 160 feet away from the router before our video began to buffer. This system is impressive and will tackle almost anything you throw at it. Whether that be streaming movies, gaming, or working from home, this system will have you covered. The sleek tower-like design will blend into its surroundings and includes 4 WAN/LAN ports for Ethernet backhaul.

This system is on the expensive side, a factor to consider if you aren't planning on using any of its advanced features or aren't likely to get a whole lot of WiFi 6-capable devices anytime soon. Overall, this contender is one of the best available options, especially for anyone looking to extend their WiFi coverage and exercise more control over their network.

Read More: Linksys Atlas Pro 6 Review

wifi mesh system - best coverage
The Linksys Atlas Pro 6 has a tower-like design that blends in well with any environment.
Credit: Abriah Wofford

Best Ease of Use


ASUS ZenWiFi (XT8)


60
OVERALL
SCORE
  • 2.4 GHz Throughput 5.2
  • 5 GHz Throughput 6.4
  • Range 5.5
  • Ease of Use 8.1
Claimed Coverage for 2 Units: 5500 sq. ft. | Wired Backhaul: Yes
REASONS TO BUY
Great QoS
Easy setup
REASONS TO AVOID
Expensive

The ASUS ZenWiFi (XT8) is a top-notch mesh system with superb advanced features. It is the only product in our lineup that has a computer-based setup option. Through the app, our system was up and running after three simple steps. ASUS incorporates AiMesh technology into these routers. This advanced feature ensures dead zones are eliminated by creating a seamless network throughout the entire home. AiMesh is easily set up through the app or PC, where more advanced features can be controlled. We were particularly impressed with the QoS. The system has three types of QoS: adaptive QoS, traditional QoS, and a bandwidth limiter for uploading and downloading. We specifically enjoyed the adaptive QoS, with options to prioritize specific tasks like gaming, streaming, work, education, and more. The system is WiFi 6-compatible with MU-MIMO and OFDMA, giving you the peace of mind that your home is future-proof. Additionally, the ZenWiFi is the gold standard when it comes to parental controls. This includes options like creating profiles, blocking sites or apps, filtering content, and creating schedules.

The ZenWiFi performed about average in everything other than our ease of use test. For such a pricey product, we would have liked to see it do a bit better in our throughput metrics. All told, the system did well and will provide enough throughput for most households. The product had the best features and ease of installation out of our lineup, which we feel is worth the investment.

Read More: ASUS ZenWiFi Review

wifi mesh system - the asus zenwifi has some of the most advanced features like qos...
The Asus ZenWiFi has some of the most advanced features like QoS, parental controls, and more.
Credit: Abriah Wofford

Compare Products

select up to 5 products to compare
Score Product Price
79
TP-Link Deco X20
tp-link deco x20 wifi mesh system review
$270
Editors' Choice Award
76
Linksys Atlas Pro 6 (MX5503)
linksys atlas pro 6 (mx5503) wifi mesh system review
$450
Top Pick Award
63
Netgear Orbi (RBK752)
netgear orbi (rbk752) wifi mesh system
$450
62
Google Nest WiFi
google nest wifi wifi mesh system review
$338
Best Buy Award
60
ASUS ZenWiFi (XT8)
asus zenwifi (xt8) wifi mesh system review
$450
Top Pick Award
59
TP-Link Deco M5
tp-link deco m5 wifi mesh system
$170
47
Amazon eero Wifi System
amazon eero wifi system wifi mesh system
$249
44
Google Wifi System
google wifi system wifi mesh system
$200
43
TP-Link Deco S4
tp-link deco s4 wifi mesh system
$148
25
Meshforce Whole Home Wifi Suite
meshforce whole home wifi suite wifi mesh system
$170

Why You Should Trust Us


For this review, we researched over 50 top WiFi mesh systems available on the market before purchasing the 10 most compelling models to test head-to-head and rank. We identified the key metrics essential to grading a WiFi mesh system. Then, we carried out a series of tests for each of the routers in our lineup. We spent hours measuring and evaluating the 2.4 GHz throughput, 5 GHz throughput, range, and ease of use.

Our testing of WiFi routers is comprised of four rating metrics:
  • 2.4 GHz Throughput (35% of overall score weighting)
  • 5 GHz Throughput (35% weighting)
  • Range (20% weighting)
  • Ease of Use (10% weighting)

Our WiFi mesh system review was conducted by Matt Spencer and Becca Glades. This team brings a unique set of skills into this category. Matt is an avid tech user and gamer. He knows the ins and outs of computer systems and has tested everything from traditional WiFi routers to gaming headsets. Becca is formally trained in software engineering. She understands the importance of speedy internet in all nooks and crannies of the building, as working from home is the new normal. You can rest assured that this team has thoroughly tested and inspected each WiFi mesh system to ensure our readers are making the most informed purchase possible.

Our testers watched a movie and walked away from the router, noting...
Our testers watched a movie and walked away from the router, noting the distance when the video began to buffer.
The ZenWiFi is incredibly easy to set up, with a simple three-step...
The ZenWiFi is incredibly easy to set up, with a simple three-step process.
Our testers thoroughly inspected each accompanying app, rating its...
Our testers thoroughly inspected each accompanying app, rating its user-friendliness.

Analysis and Test Results


To capture all aspects of a WiFi mesh system's performance, we created four different test metrics: 2.4 GHz Throughput, 5 GHz Throughput, Range, and Ease of Use. We highlighted standout performances for each metric in the sections below and any products that we found particularly lackluster.


Value


There are many WiFi mesh systems to choose from with various price points. We found that some of the pricier models, like the Linksys Atlas Pro 6 and ASUS ZenWiFi, included connectivity features like WiFi 6 compatibility, MU-MIMO, and OFDMA. They also had advanced QoS, parental controls, and more. Some of the cheaper options don't include these future-proof features, though they might not be necessary for you depending on the devices you plan on connecting. Many devices aren't yet using WiFi 6, so the need for this feature isn't yet crucial. However, this advancement allows more devices to simultaneously use the network. The Google Nest WiFi is a budget option that did a great job in our tests and includes features like parental controls, device prioritization, and more. However, this device isn't WiFi 6 compatible, a feature worth considering if you'd like to stay ahead of the game.

2.4 GHz Throughput


Most homes will have dead spots or zones. Often, these areas are located behind walls or furniture. WiFi mesh systems aim to eliminate all dead zones by creating a blanket of WiFi over the entire house. To test this, we assessed the 2.4 GHz throughput in various locations with and without obstructions.


We started nine feet away with an unobstructed path. Then, we obstruct the path with a wall. We repeated this test at 35 feet and 70 feet. We did not test the unobstructed path at 70 feet as most buildings don't have rooms that are 70 feet long without some sort of barrier.


Our overall top performer in this category was the TP-Link Deco X20.


The TP-Link's speed stayed consistently high through the nine-foot tests, both obstructed and unobstructed, until the 35-foot obstructed point.


At this location, the speed dropped slightly but remained higher than the average. The TP-Link Deco M5 followed closely behind with exceptionally fast throughput.


The TP-Link Deco X20 also dropped in speed at the 70-foot mark but remained higher than most.


The Amazon Eero WiFi System also did well in most of our tests. At the nine-foot point, it did exceptionally well with speeds up to 129 Mbps. It also did above average at the 35-foot point. However, speeds quickly dropped off to nearly inexistent at the 70-foot mark. The Linksys Atlas Pro 6 landed just behind the Eero, with slightly above-average speeds throughout.

wifi mesh system - the tp-link deco x20 is a top performer in throughput and range. the...
The TP-Link Deco X20 is a top performer in throughput and range. The pack includes three nodes.
Credit: Abriah Wofford

5 GHz Throughput


Our throughput tests were aimed at testing connectivity and speeds in different locations. We made sure to test the throughput behind barriers like walls, as this is often where dead spots or slower speeds occur. Mesh systems work to eliminate these dead spots, providing reliable and powerful speed throughout.


Our tests for the 5 GHz throughput were largely the same as the 2.5 GHz throughput test. We assessed the internet speeds at 9, 35, and 70 feet. Additionally, we obstructed the path at each location with walls to see an accurate representation of the speeds on the 5 GHz band.


The Netgear Orbi and Linksys Atlas Pro 6 lead the pack in this metric. The Linksys Atlas Pro did extremely well, with the best far-range speeds at 129 Mbps.



The TP-Link Deco X20 and Google Nest WiFi finished closely behind. The Deco X20 did an exceptional job with our short-range test, with speeds around 360 Mbps.


The Google Nest started with slightly above-average speeds at nine feet but did great at mid to long-range distances.


As expected, the Linksys Atlas Pro 6 did exceptionally well in our 70-foot obstructed tests, coming out on top at 119 Mbps.


The Netgear Orbi did well overall, with speeds consistently above 300 Mbps. Only at the 70-foot obstructed point did the speeds drop, but they remained above average.

wifi mesh system - the netgear orbi&#039;s sleek design fits into almost every room. it was...
The Netgear Orbi's sleek design fits into almost every room. It was a leader in our 5 GHz throughput test.
Credit: Abriah Wofford

Range


We conducted a test to get an accurate depiction of the range of each system. We pulled the same video on 1080p and played it on both 2.4 and 5 GHz bands for each mesh system. We simply moved away from the router in 10-foot increments, noting the point at which the video began to buffer. We rated and compared these distances for each of the mesh routers. While most performed well, a few had a standout performance.


Overall, we were the most impressed with the Linksys Atlas Pro 6. We were able to stream our movie on the 2.4 GHz channel until the 100-foot mark, at which point buffering began. We lost connection to the router before buffering occurred at 160 feet while on the 5 GHz band. The TP-Link Deco X20 also had a standout performance. On the 2.4 GHz band, our video began buffering at 100 feet, whereas the 5 GHz band held out to 110 feet.

wifi mesh system - the linksys atlas pro 6 is a top performer in our throughput, range...
The Linksys Atlas Pro 6 is a top performer in our throughput, range, and ease of use tests.
Credit: Abriah Wofford

The ASUS ZenWifi, Google Nest WiFi, and Netgear Orbi also did well. The ASUS began buffering 90 feet away from the router on both 2.4 and 5 GHz bands. The Google Nest and Netgear Orbi scored the same, buffering at 80 feet on 2.4 GHz and 100 feet on 5 GHz.

Finishing at the end was the Eero WiFi System. At 70 feet, the video would load. However, anytime we tried to advance, the video would begin buffering. This was the case for both 2.4 and 5 GHz bands.

Ease of Use


For this metric, we first assessed the simplicity of the installation. Almost all of these systems require a mobile app to be downloaded for the setup. These apps also control the mesh system, so we rated their user-friendliness as well. We then looked into the features included with these systems. Many include advanced functions like parental controls, device prioritization, guest networks, and additional WiFi settings.


We found the ASUS ZenWiFi to be the best of the best in terms of user-friendliness. It was the fastest to get running, with a simple three-step process with clear instructions. This was the only system in our lineup that had the option to do the setup through the app or a computer. Once live, there is a large selection of great features for the user. The parental controls were some of the best we tested, with options to create profiles, add an age group, block specific sites or categories, and create schedules. Additionally, ASUS has three options when it comes to QoS. The user can select between adaptive QoS, traditional QoS, or a bandwidth limiter. We particularly liked the adaptive QoS. Through this, we could easily select specific tasks to receive more bandwidth like gaming, streaming, web surfing, and more. At any point, you can add more ASUS routers should you need to expand your network even further.

The ZenWiFi has a large selection of content that can be blocked...
The ZenWiFi has a large selection of content that can be blocked through the parental controls.
The ZenWiFi has QoS that allows the user to select from a large...
The ZenWiFi has QoS that allows the user to select from a large array of activities.

The TP-Link models — the Deco M5, Deco X20, and the Deco S4 — are some of the quickest and easiest to set up. These contenders use the Deco app, which is dedicated solely to setting up and managing your network with these routers. Once you set up the initial node, adding additional nodes is very easy. The app gives you ideas about potential placements and can usually automatically detect the routers after you plug them in and they have time to turn on. You can also check your arrangement and ensure it's good once the nodes are connected. However, we usually had to update the firmware with the TP-Link models before they were good to go.

The Deco app guides you through the process with a series of prompts.
The Deco app guides you through the process with a series of prompts.
It&#039;s very easy to add additional Deco units once the first is...
It's very easy to add additional Deco units once the first is installed, making it a breeze to set up this mesh system.

We found the Linksys Atlas Pro 6 and the Google Nest WiFi the next easiest to set up. They follow a very similar process to the TP-Link routers, with guided prompts walking you through the process. Like the ASUS ZenWiFi, this system includes parental controls and QoS. The Nest's controls are incorporated into the Google Home app. This is convenient for those who already have Google smart homes as everything can be controlled in one place.

Finishing at the back of the group, the Meshforce M3S was our least favorite to set up. You need to plug in this router, connect using the factory default SSID and password on the router's base, and start the initial configuration using the MyMesh app. This app just seemed to be a bit clunky to us and took us about twice as long as the TP-Link X20 or the Deco M5.

Conclusion


Having spotty WiFi coverage can be incredibly frustrating, especially if you're working remotely from your home office, gaming, or streaming. We hope this has been a helpful comparison of all the top WiFi mesh systems currently available and has been beneficial for your quest for a better network. All of these routers will increase the usable area of your WiFi network. Still, if you are trying to get the fastest internet possible, it may be worth checking with your ISP about upgrading your service or updating your modem, as even the best router can't improve on a bottleneck caused by your modem or provider.

Matt Spencer and Becca Glades


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