Buffalo AirStation Extreme AC1750 Gigabit Wireless Router Review

802.11ac is the newest and fastest in WiFi right now and Buffalo is one of the first manufacturers to help you take advantage of the ridiculously fast wireless speeds. Buffalo’s new AC routers are among the fastest, but they’re also among the easiest, especially when it comes to taking advantage of the advanced features you didn’t know exist.

Take control over your network! See who’s using Internet bandwidth and prioritize bandwidth appropriately. Set bandwidth prioritization for specific users or applications like gaming and video streaming. You can even set up a guest WiFi network in seconds, add web filtering and parental controls to specific devices, and more.

Last year, Buffalo released their first 802.11ac router, the AC1300/N900. One year later, they have released the AC1750 (WZR-1750DHP), which is similar but improved. In our last review we went into detail on what makes 802.11ac such a blazingly fast standard for these routers. To keep it simple, 802.11ac is known as “wireless Gigabit”, which means it’s capable of transferring at similar speeds as a wire plugged directly into the router. It also provides a superior range over other routers. Since a lot of routers aren’t even “gigabit” wired (1000mbps), but rather 10 or 100mbps, it’s possible that Buffalo’s WiFi is faster than the wired compututers you’re currently using.

Aside from unprecedented wireless speeds, the value in the Buffalo AC1750 inlays in the user-friendly interface. At last, you don’t have to be in IT to understand and take advantage of advanced features. It takes mere seconds to set up a 2.4 GHz network SSID and encryption, and the same for the 5 GHz network. 5 GHz is faster if your device supports it (iPhone 5 does, iPhone 4 does not). You can attach USB storage directly to the router and access it inside the network, or even from outside the network. You can create a guest account with a maximum access time for visitors. You can get your priorities straight and easily tell your router how to distribute bandwidth between video, voice, gaming, browsing, or any other application. You can add Norton web filtering and block malicious sites, adult sites, or non-family friendly sites. You can even apply web filtering to certain devices (i.e. the kids computers or phones). Even better, you can monitor every connected device and prioritize bandwidth as necessary. These are all features that YOU can figure out, without even sifting through heavy documentation.

People may say gigabit wireless speeds are unnecessary because your internet speed isn’t even close to gigabit. It’s true that 802.11ac won’t make your internet a whole lot faster, but it can definitely improve it, especially if there’s a lot of devices in the network. You’ll realize what an impact 802.11ac has on home networking; transferring files, streaming videos, remote connections, etc. The Buffalo also offers superior range, which is usually an issue for routers.

I took advantage of 802.11ac last year and have had a phenomenal experience with Buffalo’s AC1300. It’s been extremely reliable and there’s maybe only a couple times I ever had to restart the router. I never got too advanced with the features in the backend; it can be a scary place when everything’s already working well. Now that the AC1750 has greatly improved the UI, I find myself tinkering and experimenting with different advanced features (like Wake-on-Lan for turning my computer on remotely). The speeds are outstanding, especially for streaming videos and content from my NAS. The $146.99 price tag from Amazon is very reasonable for an AC router–especially for one that’s so reliable and easy to use. Since there’s not a lot of 802.11ac compatible devices at the moment, you can buy more than one AC1750 and create a bridge so you can gift the raw speed unto more devices.

Buy it!

The Good: Fast! Reliable, Easy to set up and use advanced features, Network monitoring, QoS, Simultaneous dual-band coverage, Web filtering and parental controls, Great wireless coverage, Network (USB) storage, USB 3.0, Backward compatible, Intuitive user interface with mobile access, Stand has been improved over last version
The Bad: Was buggy until updating firmware (using v2.10), UI doesn’t have tool tips