Best router for port forwarding ( Expert Picks 2023)

If you’re looking to connect multiple devices to the same network, a router is the solution you need. It’s responsible for routing traffic between various networks, like the Internet and a local network.

Selecting the best router for port forwarding enables you to access specific services on a remote server by forwarding certain ports from the router to the server.

But did you know that port forwarding is also an essential part of network security?

By configuring port forwarding on a router, you can control which services and applications are available to your network, helping to protect against malicious attacks.

Here we share some best routers for port forwarding for your convenience.

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Comparing Features

WI-FI

WI-FI SPEED

SECURITY PROTOCOL

DEVICE CONNECTED

SPECIAL FEATURES

ASUS RT-AX86U Pro (AX5700) Wi-Fi Router

5700 Mbps

WPA3, WPA2-Enterprise, WPA-Enterprise

35+ devices

WPS

ASUSRT-AX88U Pro (AX6000) Wi-Fi Router

 6000 Mbps

‎WPS, WPA-Enterprise

30+ devices

QoS, Access Point Mode, WPS

NETGEAR Nighthawk Wi-Fi Router

10.8Gbps

WPA3-PSK, WPA2-PSK

60+ devices

Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant Voice Control

Google Nest Wi-Fi Router

3000 Mbps

Parental Controls

200+ devices

Built with Sustainable Materials

ASUS ROG Rapture WiFi 6 Gaming Router (GT-AX11000)

11000Mbps

 

AiProtection with Parental Controls

31+ devices

NitroQAM (1024-QAM) technology

Best router for port forwarding

In this guide, we will share some of the best routers present in the market today and explain what features to look for when purchasing the best router for port forwarding.

NETGEAR Nighthawk Wi-Fi Router

Are you tired of slow internet speeds? Upgrade to the NETGEAR Nighthawk router and enjoy lightning-fast speeds of up to 10.8Gbps

With the 6GHz Wi-Fi band dedicated to Wi-Fi 6E devices, you can stream 4K/8K videos, play immersive AR/VR games, and have crystal-clear HD videoconferencing without interruption.

Improve range and performance for 2.4GHz, 5GHz & 6GHz devices and its coverage area reaches up to 3,500 sq. ft.

You can easily replace your existing router and use it with any internet service provider plan up to 2 Gigabit, including cable, satellite, fiber, DSL, and more.

Setting up this router is hassle-free with the Nighthawk app, which allows you to manage your Wi-Fi settings at the device and network level, test internet speed, and monitor data usage.

Four 1G and one 2.5G Ethernet ports are also available for wired devices.

Protect your family’s Wi-Fi with NETGEAR ARMOR, which provides automatic security across all your connected devices. You can try this service for free for 30 days.

Additionally, the NETGEAR Smart Parental Controls feature promotes healthy internet habits, fosters responsibility, and builds trust with your kids. You can also try this feature for free for 30 days.

The router also includes advanced technologies like OFDMA, MU-MIMO, Dynamic QoS, 1024-QAM, Smart Connect for one Wi-Fi name, Beamforming, Amazon Alexa, and Google Assistant Voice Control.

It supports WPA2/WPA3 wireless security protocols and includes Guest Wi-Fi access, DoS, Firewall, VPN, and more.

How to set up Port Forwarding on NETGEAR Nighthawk

To get started, first decide on the type of service you want to provide.

  • Find the IP address of the server on your network that provides the service.
  • Once you’re connected to the network, open a web browser and type “orbilogin.com” to access the login window.
  • Enter your router’s username and password (usually admin and password) to access the basic homepage.
  • From there, click on Advanced > Advanced Setup > Port Forwarding/Port Triggering.
  • The system should already have selected the Port Forwarding radio button as the service type, so leave it as is.
  • Next, select the service name from the Service Name List. If the Service Name you want to add is not on the list, you can create a custom service.
  • Input the IP address of the computer that provides the service in the Server IP Address field and use the Add button to finalize the process.

Pros
  • Parental Controls, VPN, Guest Wi-Fi Secure Access
  • Personal Cloud Storage
  • Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant Voice Control
  • Setup with Nighthawk App

Cons
  • Not Compatible with too old devices

ASUS RT-AX88U Pro (AX6000) Wi-Fi Router

If you’re looking for a router ASUS RT-AX88U Pro (AX6000) is the best choice with lightning-fast internet speeds of up to 6000 Mbps, consider the latest WiFi 6 (802.11ax) with 160MHz channels.

The dual 2.5G ports ensure that traffic via these ports will receive top priority, and the WAN/LAN network port configurations are highly flexible, allowing for easy customization.

The high-performance 2.0 GHz quad-core 64-bit CPU takes computational capabilities to the next level.

Moreover, the exclusive ASUS RangeBoost Plus improves signal range and overall coverage.

Commercial-grade security is paramount, and with AiProtection Pro, powered by Trend Micro, your home network is protected at all times.

Even when you’re away from home, ASUS Instant Guard gives you a one-click sharable secure VPN for added peace of mind.

Finally, enjoy seamless roaming with rich, advanced features by adding any AiMesh-compatible router for easy extendable network options.

How to set up Port Forwarding on ASUS Router

  • First, complete the process of inputting the LAN UP address or http://router.asus.com in my web browser,
  • Selecting the virtual server/port forwarding port in the WAN option of the advanced settings menu, and choosing my server (HTTP/FTP) from the ‘Famous Server List’.
  • To finish, I simply inputted my service name, local IP, local port, and port range, clicked on yes, and saved my settings by selecting the edit and apply options. It was a straightforward process, and I’m happy to report that it was successful!

Pros
  • Speedy performance
  • Easy installation
  • Uses the latest 802.11ax technology
  • Eight LAN ports
  • Robust QOS settings
  • Built-in malware protection

Cons
  • Expensive
  • AX clients are not yet ubiquitous

ASUS RT-AX86U Pro (AX5700) Wi-Fi Router

Are you looking for lightning-fast WiFi speeds? ASUS RT-AX86U Pro (AX5700)WiFi 6 router might be just what you need.

It can deliver up to 5700 Mbps with the latest 802.11ax technology and 160MHz channels.

If you’re a gamer, you’ll love the mobile game mode that minimizes lag and latency. And with true 2 Gbps wired and wireless speeds, streaming and downloads will be smoother than ever.

Commercial-grade security powered by Trend Micro’s AiProtection Pro ensures that your home network is protected.

Plus, if you’re ever away from home, the ASUS Instant Guard gives you a one-click sharable secure VPN.

You can also easily extend your network capabilities with any AiMesh-compatible router for seamless roaming and advanced features.

Pros
  • Good performance and coverage
  • WiFi 6 for close to 5Gbps wireless connections
  • Robust parental controls and malware protection
  • Full-featured app with device prioritization
  • Dual USB ports
  • Adaptive QoS settings

Cons
  • No wall-mounting options
  • Dual-band only

Google Nest Wi-Fi Router

If you’re searching for a dependable and user-friendly router that’s perfect for port forwarding, the Google Nest Wifi Router is definitely worth considering. It’s capable of covering a maximum range of 2200 sq ft, making it ideal for small offices and homes.

You can expand its coverage up to 4400 sq ft by adding extra points, which is fantastic for larger homes or multi-story buildings where traditional routers may struggle to provide consistent coverage.

The Nest Wi-Fi router can support up to 200 connected devices, making it suitable for households and businesses with a high number of users and devices.

Its dual-band 2.4 GHz/5 GHz frequencies, deliver a stable, high-speed connection, ensuring a seamless streaming and gaming experience.

One of the standout features of the Nest Wi-Fi router is its security controls and parental controls.

With these controls, users can easily manage and control access to the internet for individual devices, keeping their network and connected devices safe from potential security threats.

Thanks to its easy-to-use app, setting up the Nest Wi-Fi router is a breeze. The app allows for quick and straightforward setup, as well as the ability to manage and control the router from your phone.

Additionally, the router’s Bluetooth connectivity technology makes connecting with other devices effortless.

The Nest Wi-Fi router comes with a 15W power adapter, ensuring that it can provide consistent, stable performance.

How to set up Port Forwarding on Google Nest Router

To configure your port management rules, open the app and go to the settings and actions tab.

  • Choose the Network & general option, then select Advanced Networking.
  • From there, you can access the port management section and create your own rules.
  • Make sure to select the tab that corresponds to your IP address type (IPv4 or IPv6).
  • Then, choose your preferred device and add your internal and external ports for IPv4 or input the port range for IPv6.
  • For IPv4, configure an external port on the WAN and an internal port used by the device on the local network.
  • Finally, select your preferred protocol for sending data over the internet, including UDP, TCP, or TCP/UDP.

Once you’ve made your selections, simply click on Done to save your port management rules. This should help to ensure that your network is running smoothly.

Pros
  • 15W power adapter
  • Dual-Band 2.4 GHz/5 GHz Frequencies
  • Security Controls and Parental Controls
  • Bluetooth Connectivity Technology

Cons
  • The app may not be as feature-rich as competitors

ASUS ROG Rapture WiFi 6 Gaming Router

If you’re in need of a powerful and reliable router for port forwarding, the ASUS ROG Rapture WiFi 6 Gaming Router is an excellent option to consider. Having 11000Mbps Wi-fi speed.

With a range of up to 3,500 square feet, it provides stable and strong coverage for homes and offices.

Additionally, its ability to handle up to 31 connected devices allows for a robust network that can support multiple users and devices without compromising on performance.

This means it can prioritize game traffic with device, game packet, and game server acceleration.

The power supply is also impressive, with an AC input of 110V-240V (50-60Hz) and a DC output of 19V with a max current of 3.42A. The router has eight external antennas, which is fantastic for signal strength.

Furthermore, the hardware is state-of-the-art, with a 1.8GHz Quad Core CPU and a 2.5G gaming port for optimal performance.

I also love that it’s compatible with the ASUS AiMesh Wi-Fi system for seamless whole-home coverage. It has 256MB Flash and 1GB RAM, which is perfect for gaming.

What’s even better is that ASUS WRT enables support for open, advanced monitoring and control, which includes device bandwidth utilization, as well as device or usage prioritization.

ASUS AiProtection security is top-notch, neutralizing internet threats before they hit your network.

Lastly, the next-gen AX Wi-Fi is backward compatible with 802.11a/b/g/n/ac Wi-Fi devices and supports current Wi-Fi devices.

The operating frequency is 2.4GHz, 5GHz 1, 5GHz 2. I am thrilled to use this router!

Pros
  • Free security and parental controls
  • Multi-gig internet compatibility
  • Great long-range speeds

Cons
  • Hefty price
  • Fewer Ethernet ports than others
  • Annoying antennas

What features should I look for when buying a port forwarding router?

To select the right port forwarding router you must have to check out these features. There are a few important things to keep in mind to ensure you get the best value for your money.

Larger coverage area

Firstly, consider the router’s coverage area. A larger coverage area means you can connect more devices to your network, and your WiFi signal will be more consistent and reliable. For smaller spaces, at least 2,000 square feet should suffice, while larger homes or offices should look for a router with a coverage area of at least 3,000 square feet.

Wi-fi Speed

Another critical factor is the router’s speed capabilities. Faster speeds will ensure that your port forwarding applications run smoothly, and your overall internet experience will be improved. For optimal performance, look for a router with a maximum speed of at least 3Gbps, but 2Gbps should suffice for most users.

Security Protocols

When you’re looking for a router that supports port forwarding, it’s important to prioritize the security of your personal information and network. Make sure to choose an option with advanced security features like WPA2/WPA3 encryption, a double firewall, and protection against DoS attacks.

Features

It’s also a good idea to look for routers that offer convenient features for easy setup, customization, and WiFi network management, such as an intuitive app.

Router’s Compatibility

Make sure that your router is compatible with your ISP’s fastest and most reliable internet plans and all of your devices, including laptops, smartphones, smart home devices, and gaming consoles

FAQs

Can some routers not port forward?

Yes, Some routers do not support port forwarding. It is not supported on older routers because they do not have the necessary firmware.

Can I enable port forwarding on my router?

Yes, you need to enable port forwarding on your router in order for an external application to be able to use certain services on your device.

Can you get hacked through port forwarding?

In order to do port forwarding, you need to ensure that your network is secure and that you are using secure ports. A secure network or device cannot be hacked through Port Forwarding.

Can you port forward on a wireless router?

Yes, In the router’s settings, find a tab for “Ports,” “Port forwarding,” “Virtual server,” or something similar. Create a new rule for port forwarding. Set up a new rule to forward traffic from a port to one of your network devices

How do I know if my router supports port forwarding?

Port Forwarding settings may be found in your router’s manual/online documentation if you cannot find them in the user interface.

Conclusion

To ensure unauthorized access is prevented, it’s important to bear in mind that port forwarding is a crucial element of a router’s security features. This function restricts the types of services that are available on your network, which helps to increase the speed of services like gaming, streaming, and websites. When properly configured, port forwarding on your router enables you to enjoy a faster and more secure network experience.

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