TP-Link Archer AX11000 vs Netgear Nighthawk XR700: which wireless router is best?

We compare the futuristic TP-Link Archer AX11000 and Netgear Nighthawk XR700 wireless routers

TP-Link Archer AX11000 vs Netgear Nighthawk XR700
(Image credit: Netgear)

As many of us are now working from home at least a day or two per week, getting the best Wi-Fi speeds is incredibly important. To help things along, we're comparing two of the best wireless routers going: the TP-Link Archer AX11000 and Netgear Nighthawk XR700.

Before we get going, we need to acknowledge something important. Yes, both of these routers look like they come straight out of Star Wars, specifically from the Galactic Empire's fleet. But setting that aside, they also do an incredible job of broadcasting fast and reliable internet around your home.

These are, without a doubt, two of the most high-end wireless routers on the market, going above and beyond the default routers that most ISPs offer, which will also be enough for most people. But for some, only the best will do and that's why we're here.

For other internet-related guides, check out our best broadband deals, the best 4G home broadband deals, best Wi-Fi extenders, and best mesh network.

So, let's jump in and compare these two excellent wireless routers.

Netgear Nighthawk XR700

(Image credit: Netgear)

As you would imagine, both of these are incredibly powerful and capable routers, going far beyond the default offers from broadband providers.

Given that you're reading this, we reckon you're fairly technically minded and so we'll just reel off some specs, comparing TP-Link and Netgear: up to 11 Gbps bandwidth, compared to 7.2 Gbps for Netgear's Nighthawk; a quad-core 1.8GHz CPU, compared to quad-core 1.7GHz; and eight wired Ethernet ports, compared to six.

Both the TP-Link and Netgear come with incredibly customisable software, which can make setup a bit of a faff but also serves to suit the routers to your exact needs. Because they're aimed predominantly at gamers, everything is tailored to those needs, too. In fact, both compares go to great lengths to detail their gaming creds.

If you're looking for a high-end router, you won't be disappointed with either of these in terms of features. Pretty much anything you want to do can be achieved and the flexibility of having powerful wireless connectivity plus up to eight wired ports means that you will be able to power even the most complex setup.

There really isn't that much that separates these two in terms of features, most likely because they're aimed squarely at the exact same markets: power users.

TP-Link Archer AX11000

(Image credit: TP-Link)

So, the designs...

As we said, both of these wouldn't look out of place as extras in Star Wars and in some ways, that's part of the appeal. These serve a very specific and niche purpose so why not have some fun with the design?

The only thing we would note design-wise is that these two are big, very big, and will take up a fair amount of space wherever you put them, both in terms of areas and height. It's something to be mindful of, especially if your setup is already a bit cramped.

We actually came to love the designs of these two and since this is your router, not your desktop tower or console, you can probably get away with hiding them away a bit if you'd prefer something more subtle.

When it comes to using them, both offer excellent connectivity throughout the house (although do note that the speeds are still limited by your ISP and broadband package), have loads of ports for wired connections, and offer really customisable software to fit your exact needs, whatever they are.

There wasn't actually too much between these two in terms of use, since both offer basically the best wireless router experience you could ask for. Just make sure that your broadband plan is up to scratch before splashing.

Netgear Nighthawk XR700

(Image credit: Netgear)

If you're in the market for a high-end router, these two are as good as you're going to get. Of course, this means that they're pretty expensive and so be prepared to part with quite a bit of cash. But, ultimately, if you care about having the best, it's worth it.

On balance, we think the TP-Link Archer AX11000 is probably the better of the two but Netgear's is by no means a slouch and perhaps offers even more detailed and tweakable software, although it does often cost more.

Another good way to decide would be to see which one is cheaper, since they offer pretty much the same set of features and specs.

Happy gaming!

Max Slater-Robins

Max Slater-Robins has written for T3 now on and off for over half a decade, with him fitting in serious study at university in between. Max is a tech expert and as such you'll find his words throughout, appearing in everything from reviews and features, to news and deals. Max is specifically a veteran when it comes round to deal hunting, with him seeing out multiple Black Friday campaigns to date.