Wireless Dual Band RouterA dual band wireless router is one that has two separate bands available for communication. One on the 2.4 GHz band and one on the 5 GHz band.

Your typical single band router can only use 3 non-overlapping channels on the 2.4 GHz band. However, dual band routers can utilize these same channels plus 23 non-overlapping channels on the 5 GHz band.

What Are Channels?

When you set up a WiFi network in your house, you have the option of switching between different channels. This will allow you to minimize interference between your wireless router and those of your neighbors nearby that are operating on the same frequency. It can actually make your wireless network faster/more efficient if the other routers in the area are not running on the same channel as yours.

Do I Need A Dual Band Router?

Lets say you live in an apartment complex or barracks. You have neighbors on each side of you. There are neighbors directly across the hall, and to their left and right. You may even have neighbors above and below you. If each of these apartments has a wireless router, including yours, that’s potentially 8 wireless devices that could be interfering with each other. That doesn’t even include other things that use the 2.4 GHz band, such as microwaves, baby monitors, blue tooth devices, etc.

Your typical single band router that runs on the 2.4 GHz band only has 3 non-overlapping channels to choose from. There is no way all those devices in the immediate area cannot be on overlapping channels. It’s not mathematically possible. So all of those networks will have some interference with each other and they will not be communicating at optimum speeds.

The same scenario applies to modular/trailer parks. The units are not as close together as apartments, but you have neighbors really close all around you. It’s not just wireless routers you have to worry about. As mentioned above, single band routers run on the same 2.4 GHz band as microwave ovens, baby monitors, blue tooth devices, cordless phones, etc.

In these types of communities, it is a necessity to have a dual band wireless router that can operate on different bands than the same routers everyone else has. There are many more options for channels on the 5 GHz band.

Simultaneous Dual Band Routers

Simultaneous Dual Band RouterLets say you don’t live in a highly populated community, but you live in a large home with a large family. If you have the kids playing online video games and streaming video on their computers while someone else is trying to work on their laptop, a simultaneous dual band router would help tremendously.

These routers allow you to run two WiFi networks simultaneously from a single device. One will be a 2.4 GHz band network for work, email or browsing related devices. The 5 GHz network would be for the kids to connect their XBox or Playstation up to. The 5 GHz band is great for streaming video and video gaming because it allows for low packet loss, which makes for a great experience.

Ready to shop? I’ll help you find the best dual band router for you.