You’ve probably seen the different WiFi channels - 2.4GHz and 5GHz - but what’s the difference between these and which one is right for you?
Most newer wireless routers offer two separate bands of channels, but choosing the right one can be challenging, especially if you don’t geek out over today’s technology and simply want to plug everything in and access the internet. Let’s explore the difference between the two types of channels.
Understanding Range vs. SpeedThe main difference between 2.4GHz and 5GHz is the wireless range versus speed. If you have a larger area and need a better range, 2.4GHz will likely work better for your needs. However, if you are looking for higher speeds and better overall performance, 5GHz will work better for you.
The newest channel is 5GHz and can potentially eliminate network interference and clutter, resulting in higher performance and decreasing lag time. However, 5GHz can’t reach as far as 2.4GHz.
Choosing the Best Option for Your HomeTo best determine if 2.4GHz or 5GHz is better for your home, consider the following.
- Size Of Your Home - If you have a larger home that requires a more substantial coverage area, you will find that 2.4GHz will work best for you. If you live in an apartment or smaller house, 5GHz will be faster and help reduce interference from neighbor’s networks.
- Obstacles - Because more devices usually use the 2.4GHz band, it may be prone to interference. You’ll often find Bluetooth devices, older routers, garage door openers, baby monitors and other devices on this bandwidth. While the 5GHz can help minimize and fix interferences that slow down your WiFi connection, they must be near the router to work correctly. However, it’s important to note that fewer overlap results in improved performance.
- Type of Devices - Because the 2.4GHz uses an extended type of waves, it’s best for transmission through solid objects and even walls. Ideally, it’s best to use this band to connect your devices for activities that require low bandwidth, such as browsing the internet. 5GHz is best for high-bandwidth activities and devices, such as streaming HDTV and gaming. We find that it’s best to spread your devices across the two types of bands, eliminating competition and maximizing your WiFi security.