What Is A Dual Band Router

Dual Band Router

Many times we find the terminology: Dual Band Router or Dual Band Wi-Fi Router . What is that double band? We explain this in this post.

What Is Dualband Router?

Dual band routers are capable of emitting Wi-Fi signal in both the 2.4GHz band and the 5GHz band. 

But what about the 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz?

Router 2.4 Or 5

2.4 GHz and 5 GHz Bands

Table of Contents

What Is A Dual Band Router?

Routers provided by internet companies are usually single-band. That is, it only broadcasts in a band that is usually 2.4 GHz. For this 2.4 GHz band, not only router use this, but by others many technologies: wireless phones, keyboards and mice or the blue tooth of the mobile. Even the house’s own microwave interferes with that band.

On the other hand, we are usually surrounded by other routers either from the neighbour or from the bar below. And they are all working on the same spectrum. Therefore it is usually a very saturated band .

Dual-band routers are capable of broadcasting in both the 2.4 GHz band.

The main advantage of connecting in the 5 GHz band is that it is less saturated. Which causes fewer interferences giving a quality connection . In addition to greater speed.

With the dual band routers you get the advantages of both channels. Greater coverage with 2.4 GHz and more speed and less saturation with 5 GHz.

The arrival of solutions with support of the new 802.11ac standard has led many manufacturers to bring to market solutions known as Dual Band . This “double band” refers to the ability to transmit in the 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz bands.

This capacity allows the coexistence of the new standard with those that already existed in the market, and will also facilitate the transition to 802.11ac solutions in this period in which some WiFi networks and others will be available at the same time.

802.11 Ac Frequency Band

Band Problems

The 2.4 GHz band get advantage of perhaps in an exaggerated way. Not only is the 802.11b and 802.11g standard used, which can only work in this frequency band, but it is also used by dozens of home electronics solutions.

The three non-overlapping channels available to this band are occupied by the transmissions in those wireless networks, but also by other access points, microwave ovens, cordless phones, Bluetooth devices , etc. That causes an environment full of noise and interference that degrades the performance of the networks.

Another of the limitations of this band is division of 802.11n WiFi networks into 20 MHz channels with space for four channels that do not overlap each other, although we can combine a maximum of two channels to obtain a 40 MHz channel that It offers more bandwidth.

All these limitations disappear in the 802.11ac standard , which to begin with is capable of reaching maximum transfer rates of 1.3 Gbps, which equates (and even exceeds) with Gigabit Ethernet networks in ideal conditions. Of course, achieving these ideals in both wired and wireless environments is complicated, but the transfer rates are excellent.

In addition, the frequency band of the 5 GHz is much less saturated : at the moment only this standard makes use of that band, and although obviously there may be saturation conditions in the future, all its features suggest that its capacity in this regard is much larger than the current WiFi technologies.

Finally, in the 5 GHz environment we have 19 channels which combine not only 2 in 2, but we can connect four and even eight channels , which would result in a channel (respectively) of 80 or 160 MHz. These channels allow you to dramatically increase the available bandwidth per connection.

Two Types Of Dual Band Routers

The advantages of 802.11ac connectivity have made many manufacturers begin to integrate it, but without forgetting the relevance and popularity of 802.11n networks that are the de facto standard in the industry and in the end user.

Dual Band routers have appeared precisely to solve this problem and facilitate that in a home or a company users can connect to one or another band interchangeably if their devices support them.

There are currently two types of Dual Band routers:

Simultaneous Dual Band Router

Offers twice the bandwidth and creates independent WiFi networks, for example for games and video streaming. This allows interference between these networks to be avoided, and both operate simultaneously.

Dual Band Selectable

In this case we have the same bandwidth as a router that works with a single band. A single WiFi network is also created for all devices. And that network is somewhat more saturated, and the user can at any time choose one or the other.

The description makes it clear: routers that work in Simultaneous Dual Band mode are much more attractive to the user, providing more flexibility and generating two totally different dedicated networks to which users can connect interchangeably.

802.11 Ac Frequency Band

Is It Early To Bet On 802.11ac?

Not at all: the current draft is very close to becoming the final version in the absence of minor incompatibilities with the older WiFi standards. The only current problem is the lack of adapters for PCs , laptops, tablets or smartphones. But that is beginning in the coming months we will see how many more devices offer 802.11ac support.

There are other factors to consider. For example: lovers of custom firmwares for their routers are also in luck in this regard. Because solutions such as DD-WRT offer compatibility with some of the new Dual Band models. The Cisco Linksys E4200 is a good example. Although there are others, such as the Asus RT-N66U that also supports this firmware.

The conclusion is clear: if you are thinking of upgrading your router, keep in mind the Dual Band options , which will guarantee you to be able to take advantage of the multiple advantages of 802.11ac connectivity and that have the potential to become extremely popular products in the market.