When you are an avid video game player, and you like to play with and against other players from all over the world then you need a reliable internet connection, which means you need to have the best wireless adapter for gaming. Although some gamers would rather have their computers connected directly to their modems or routers, there are many who don’t particularly like have messy network cables running through their homes, and for them having the best wireless adapter for gaming is the best choice.

​However, not all wireless adapters will do. Some Wi-Fi adapters cannot provide the same kind of reliable connection that cables do. Nevertheless, there are some top-of-the-line products that can deliver the same kind of connectivity without the hassles of cables. To ensure that you make the right choice in wireless adapters, here is a small buying guide that you may consult.

But before we go to the factors of consideration for the best choice, let’s first highlight the 4 best products on the market.​

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Product

Summary​

My Rating​

TP-Link AC600 Wireless High Gain Dual Band USB Adapter (Archer T2UH)
TP-Link AC600 Wireless High Gain Dual Band USB Adapter

Connects to PCs via USB

ASUS Dual-Band Wireless-AC1900 PCI-E Adapter (PCE-AC68)
ASUS Dual-Band Wireless-AC1900 PCE-AC68

This product has a built-in heatsink that can effectively dissipate heat away from the vital components of your CPU.

TP-Link AC1900 Wireless Dual Band PCI-Express Adapter with Beamforming Technology (Archer T9E)
TP-Link Archer T9E

With Beamforming, Archer T9E provide the widest ranges in all wireless adapters out there

TP-Link Archer T4UH High Gain Wireless Dual Band USB Adapter (AC1200)
TP-Link Archer T4UH

Connects to PCs via USB 3.0

Types of Wireless Adapters

There are actually several types of wireless adapters that you can use, however you can only use two of them for desktop PCs. The PCMCIA (Personal Computer Memory Card International Association) and Mini PCI wireless adapters were once used in old laptops that had no built-in Wi-Fi connectivity. These cards are now phased out of the market as new laptops no longer need them.

1. PCI Interface Wireless Cards

PCI (Peripheral Component Interconnect) cards are the most common, and according to many the most reliable, wireless adapters for desktop computers. You install these cards on the PCI slot on your PC’s motherboard to give it wireless connectivity.

2. USB Wireless Network Adapters

These are more convenient to use that the PCI Wi-Fi cards because you only need to connect them to an available USB port on the desktop. This type of wireless adapter is best for those who don’t want to open up their desktop computers, or they just don’t have enough space on their motherboards for a PCI wireless adapter.

What to Look for When Choosing a Wireless Adapter

1. Make sure that you have enough space for the adapter

If you’ve used up most of the PCI slots on your motherboard, like you have more than one video card installed, or if you cannot make room for the PCI wireless adapter to fit then you might need to use a USB adapter. On the other hand, if you have multiple peripherals connected via USB then you need to go with the PCI card adapter.

2. Wi-Fi signal strength in your home

Where is your desktop PC located in relation to the Wi-Fi router? If there are multiple walls between you and your router then you need a router that has larger antennas so it can receive the wireless signals. However, to ensure that you will get a stable connection, you should at least install a signal repeater to extend the range of your Wi-Fi router.

3. Desired connection speed

Since you are looking for the best wireless adapter for gaming then you need to look for the ones that can provide fast download and upload speeds. Anything less than 600Mbps download and 100Mbps upload will not do these days, especially since many games require a huge bandwidth lest you get disconnected often.

4. Antenna Design

The best wireless adapter for gaming are those that have a movable antenna, preferably more than one. Movable antennae are necessary because you will need to move them around so your desktop can receive the strongest Wi-Fi signal that it can. Some USB wireless adapters that have an internal, Omni-directional antenna, and though some of them do work nicely, most have a hard time getting and maintaining a strong connection.

Now that you have some ideas on what to look for when shopping for the best wireless adapter for gaming, here are a few product suggestions that you may want to take into consideration.​

Top 4 Best Wireless Adapter for Gaming Reviews

TP-Link AC600 Wireless High Gain Dual Band USB Adapter

TP-Link AC600 Wireless High Gain Dual Band USB Adapter (Archer T2UH)

Editor Rating

TP-Link has been one of the leading companies when it comes to network connectivity, and it is one of the first to offer wireless adapters once Wi-Fi became mainstream. The AC600 is one of the company’s best offerings in terms of USB network adapters as it provides high-speed and reliable wireless connections, which means you will not be experiencing any lag or dropped connections.

​This product is perfect for gamers who absolutely have no more room in their motherboard for an additional peripheral device, or they just don’t want to go through all the hassle of opening the case and moving cables around to make room for a PCI slot.

​The AC600 USB adapter is certainly one of the best wireless adapter for gaming because it utilizes two wireless bands to provide the user with up to 600Mbps connection speed. It also has a compact design and a USB cable that makes it easy to install and position.

Pros

  • Small and compact design; it will not add too much clutter on your desk. If positioned correctly, you might not even notice that it is there.
  • Comes with a USB cable for easy installation. You don’t need to have the entire thing dangling precariously at the back of your CPU case. Connecting the adapter using the USB cable also minimizes the chances of the adapter shaking loose from the USB port.
  • Dual band connectivity promises seamless connection, perfect for streaming movies or for online gaming.

Cons

  • The unit only has one antenna. This means the adapter can only receive Wi-Fi signals from one direction, which often leads to the user often adjusting the position of the antenna to get a strong signal.
  • TP-Link’s customer support is not the most helpful in the world. If you ever run into problems while using the AC600 (which is rare, but it happens), you can rarely rely on their CS to help.

The great thing about the TP-Link AC600 is that it can perform at par with the best internal wireless adapters out there. Sure, there will be times when you will bump into your desk and unplug the AC600, but this is just a minor inconvenience considering its stellar performance in other areas.

ASUS Dual-Band Wireless-AC1900 PCE-AC68

ASUS Dual-Band Wireless-AC1900 PCI-E Adapter (PCE-AC68)

Editor Rating

Asus is at it again with their excellent computer peripherals, and now they are offering a wireless network adapter that not only adds functionality to your gaming rig, it also adds a touch of style; the Asus PCE-AC68.

​If you have always wished that your desktop could have wireless access so you can do away with the messy Ethernet cables strewn all over your room, then the PCE-AC68 is your best choice. This wireless adapter is quite compact so it can fit in your computer case. It also has a magnetic antenna base that you can place on top of your CPU for maximum wireless connectivity.

​The PCE-AC68 has a built-in heatsink that can effectively dissipate heat away from the vital components of your CPU. It also has three multi-directional antenna so you can always get the strongest Wi-Fi signal wherever your desktop is in your home.

Pros

  • The PCE-AC68 can transfer and receive data at a lightning-fast, 1.3 Gbps, faster than other generic wireless adapters out there. It will seem as if you are still connected via Ethernet cables, but you are completely wireless.
  • The three adjustable antennae allows the device to pick up even the faintest Wi-Fi signal; you don’t have to worry about disconnections because the scope of the antenna is quite wide.
  • The heatsink has a stylish design. The red powder coated finish of the PCE-AC68’s heatsink will feel quite at home in any high-end gaming rig, especially if you’re rocking a ROG motherboard with a red glow theme.

Cons

  • The included driver for the PCE-AC68 is not compatible with Windows 10; you need to download the updated version to make the adapter work. Using the included driver results in disconnection and weak signals.
  • Some users complain that their computers could not detect the device when the other two PCI slots are in use.

The driver error when using Windows 10 is easily remedied, although it would have been nice if it already came with the package of the Asus PCE-AC68. On the other hand, its ability to suck up Wi-Fi signals from anywhere in your house more than makes up for this minute hassle. The AC1900 is still one of the best Wi-Fi adapter for gaming and you should get one for yourself.

TP-Link Archer T9E

TP-Link AC1900 Wireless Dual Band PCI-Express Adapter with Beamforming Technology (Archer T9E)

Editor Rating

Besides USB adapters, TP-Link also offers internal wireless adapters, and the Archer T9E is one of their most popular offerings. This internal wireless adapter is capable of transfer speeds up to 1.3Gbps, ensuring that your next online match will not end in a frustrating loss because you lost Wi-Fi connectivity.

​This wireless adapter is best suited for those who are building a new desktop PC, mainly because it will be easier to make room in the motherboard that way. Although the compact size does make it easier to cram it into tight spaces in between your other computer peripherals.

​The Archer T9E utilizes wireless AC, which is the fastest Wi-Fi connection today. This makes it the perfect companion for streaming 4k videos from online sites like Netflix, and also perfect for online games that require a fast and steady connection, like MOBAs.

Pros

  • The 802.11ac chipset allows the desktop to access Wireless AC, which is almost the same connection speed as a wired connection. It is also much more reliable than the other wireless formats.
  • Three Omni-directional antennas provides a wider range so your desktop can still gather Wi-Fi signals even from afar.
  • Backwards compatibility with 802.11b/g/n means you can still use this adapter even if you haven’t upgraded your modem to wireless AC yet.

Cons

  • There is no movable antenna base, you can only place them on the back of your computer case.
  • The included driver is not compatible with Windows 10

Although it is unfortunate that you can only place the antenna at the back of the CPU case, the Archer T9E’s range is so wide that you do not really have to fiddle too much with the antenna position that much. The fact that the Archer T9E has one of the widest ranges of all wireless adapters out there, and that it uses Wireless AC, makes this model one of the best wireless adapter for gaming.

TP-Link Archer T4UH

TP-Link Archer T4UH High Gain Wireless Dual Band USB Adapter (AC1200)

Editor Rating

This is another offering from TP-Link, and this time it’s another USB wireless adapter, but this time it’s something more powerful, the Archer T4UH. Unlike other USB network adapters, the T4UH utilizes an 802.11ac chipset, which uses the most powerful Wi-Fi connection, Wireless AC.

​If you don’t have enough room in your CPU case, and you just happen to have one unused USB slot, then you can use this USB adapter to give your desktop computer the most powerful wireless connection currently used today.

​The Archer T4UH is a compact, and yet really powerful, wireless USB adapter that you only need to plug into any available USB port. It has two, high-gain antennae that can soak up even the faintest Wi-Fi signal and latch onto it. You can get rid of all that messy wiring that you have scattered all over your house and just use this simple plug and play device to connect your gaming laptop to the internet.

Pros

  • The Archer T4UH has a small form factor that fits well with any design aesthetic.
  • Wireless AC essentially gives your desktop a wireless connection that is as fast, if not faster, as wired connections.
  • The Archer T4UH is compatible with most operating systems, including most Linux distros.

Cons

  • The antennae of the Archer T4UH is not adjustable, they can only go up and down. However, they are powerful enough that you really don’t have to adjust them that much.
  • The included driver is not compatible with Windows 10, but you can download the updated driver from the TP-Link website.

The thing that makes the Archer T4UH one of the best Wi-Fi adapter for gaming is that you just need to plug it into any available USB 3.0 port. You don’t have to worry about opening up your computer case and fiddle around inside for an available PCI slot.

Conclusion

Although wired network connections have been long thought as the most stable and reliable networking solution, having miles and miles of cable laid out inside your home does make it quite messy. If you want less clutter, but you still want a reliable connection for your videogame needs, then you need to choose the best wireless adapter for gaming.

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