Online Gaming with VPN: Best Routers & Services

As time goes on, technology seems to become a greater and greater part of our lives. Some may think that any old router can keep up with the way we use the Internet today, but this is completely wrong.

Online gaming has become a staple of household entertainment. If you have played online games, you have probably experienced lag, dropped frames, and freezing in crucial team-fights or missions.

More than likely, this is due to your weak wireless router coming under heavy load as it struggles to send packets to the server. It can also be a problem with hacking, geographic restrictions, and even speed throttling.

To remedy this, the FlashRouters team has put together a list of powerful wireless routers and VPN services. These recommendations will help keep your gameplay sharp on the battlefield and allow you to even stream your games!

Online Gaming with VPN

Issues that affect any form of online activity, such as hacking, geographic restrictions, and speed throttling, can affect online gaming as well.

Whether it be League of Legends, World of Warcraft, or even the newly released Fortnite, using a virtual private network can have many benefits.

Using a VPN can help unblock regionally restricted games, protect against DDoS attacks, and even reduce latency or lag in your favorite video games.

Best Wireless Routers For Online Gaming with VPN

If you’re a PC gamer, you probably know that better parts equal better performance. A high-end processor and graphics card will provide infinitely better performance than a low-end processor and an integrated card.

The same holds true for your wireless router. Different routers have different processor speeds, RAM, and even flash memory.

The Best Mid-Range Router

Netgear Nighthawk R7800 AC2600

The Netgear Nighthawk R7800 maintains its spot as one of our top-selling routers by offering blazing fast dual-band Wireless-AC speeds of up to 2600Mbs. It boasts four high-powered external antennas for maximum wireless performance.

Inside, the Nighthawk hosts a powerful dual-core 1.7GHz Broadcom CPU, 128MB of internal flash memory, and a whopping 512MB of RAM. With this device, your online gaming with VPN performance will be hindered no longer!

The Best Budget Router

Linksys WRT1900ACS/AC v2 AC1900

While sporting a classic exterior, the Linksys WRT1900ACS has modern internal components.

It provides users with extremely fast dual-band wireless speeds of up to 1900Mbs. With three powerful external antennas, don’t worry about shoddy wireless connection while playing throughout your house.

This device sports one of the fastest processors available, the 1.6 GHz dual-core Marvell ARM CPU. Despite having the standard 128MB of flash memory, it has double the amount of RAM as similar models, with a hefty 512MB. This model is a great addition to any online gaming setup.

The Best High-End Router

Asus RT-AC5300 AC5300

At first glance, anyone can tell that this router is a total powerhouse.

With a menacing EIGHT external antennas, this router packs a punch by offering tri-band wireless speeds of up to 5300Mbps! But it doesn’t stop there!

This router comes with a powerful dual-core Broadcom CPU clocking at the speedy 1.4GHz. It also comes with a sweet 512MB of RAM and 128MB of flash memory, ensuring top-of-the-line performance.

For the serious gamer, this router will never you or your teammates down!

Top Online Gaming VPN: Best VPN Services

ExpressVPN

ExpressVPN offers blazing fast VPN speeds with 148 VPN servers in 94 different countries. This service provides you with unlimited bandwidth and no throttling.

If security is an issue, ExpressVPN holds no activity or connection logs and boasts 256-bit AES encryption as well as DNS/IPv6 leak protection, a kill switch, and split tunneling.

At a low of only $8.32 per month, ExpressVPN is a great choice especially since it offers an easy-to-use router app!

NordVPN

NordVPN maintains a top spot with over 2,140 VPN servers in 56 countries. They offer secure servers tailored for video streaming and P2P activities, such as online gaming.

The service also offers a strict no logs policy, an automatic kill switch, as well as DNS leak protection to ensure that customers are well protected.

For a 2-year plan, NordVPN offers competitive pricing at only $3.29 per month, making it one of the cheaper plans to get started on. At this price, who can say no to better performance online?

FlashRouters: An All In One Solution

All this information too much to process? Don’t worry FlashRouters is a one-stop-shop for your online gaming needs.

With a FlashRouter, all your needs are taken care of. We provide you with a top-of-the-line wireless router custom flashed with open-source software. This allows for upgraded performance and the ability to use a VPN on your home network.

Having trouble deciding which FlashRouter to choose? Visit our handy router-finder to discover the best device that suits you.

Watch YouTube Red From Anywhere With A VPN Router

YouTube Red

Almost every Internet user is aware of YouTube’s library of viral videos, music videos, and original content. YouTube was a hit from the beginning, raking in millions of viewers daily.

With no sign of the success of YouTube stopping, Google has now released YouTube Red, a paid subscription service designed to enhance the YouTube experience for users.

Unfortunately, YouTube Red is only available in the US, Australia, New Zealand, Korea, and Mexico. Read on to find out how FlashRouters can help you watch YouTube Red from anywhere.

What Exactly Is YouTube Red?

YouTube Red is a monthly subscription service from YouTube. It currently costs $9.99 per month and includes a one-month free trial. YouTube Red also comes with the option of a family membership. This option is $14.99 per month, with one month free, but allows up to 6 family members per household.

This service was initially called YouTube Music Key. This service would let you stream music and music videos without ads.

As of October 2015, the service was re-titled YouTube Red. This is the service we use today, allowing all videos to be played without ads.

Using YouTube Red With A VPN

As mentioned before, this service is only available in the US, Australia, New Zealand, Korea, and Mexico. To use this service in essentially every country, using a VPN service is recommended.

A VPN is a service that routes Internet traffic to remote servers around the world. This adds a layer of security against prying eyes as well as the ability to get around geographical restrictions.

Some privacy focused popular VPNs for YouTube include:

  • ExpressVPN: Based in the British Virgin Islands with improved privacy laws, ExpressVPN offers locations in 87 countries.
  • IPVanish: A Tier-one VPN provider that owns and operates their own servers with a No logs policy.
  • PrivateInternetAccess: PIA offers servers around the world at very affordable prices.

Top YouTube Red Features

Along with the complete removal of ads on YouTube’s website and apps, subscribers get a few other perks.

Offline Video Viewing

One benefit impacts how mobile users watch videos. This new feature is offline viewing. With offline viewing, subscribers can download YouTube videos to a phone or tablet. These videos are available for up to 30 days.

Download videos with YouTube Red VPN

Recommended FlashRouters for YouTube Red

If you are interested in encrypting your entire network, using an enhanced privacy VPN Router From FlashRouters will allow you filter all traffic through a Virtual Private Network, even devices which lack native support, like video game consoles and Smart TVs.

If you are looking to stream YouTube Red with VPN on Xbox or Apple TV, a FlashRouter is the way to go.

Linksys WRT1900ACS DD-WRT RouterR7800 Nighthawk DD-WRT RouterAsus RT-AC5300 DD-WRT Router
Wireless-AC1900 Mbps
1.6 Ghz Marvell Processor
4 Ext Antennas
Wireless-AC2600 Mbps
1.7 Ghz Broadcom Processor
4 Ext Antennas
Wireless-AC5300 Mbps
1.4 GHz Marvell Processor
8 Ext Antennas

More Top YouTube Red/Google Music Features

Listen Anywhere

The second benefit with YouTube Red is the ability to listen to videos with the screen off. This allows subscribers to listen to audiobooks music and music videos, and even TED talks on the go.

Exclusive Original Content

Additionally, subscribers to the service also get exclusive access original shows and movies form the top YouTube stars.

Some of this exclusive content includes original series from you favorite YouTube channels such as BuzzFeed, Corridor Digital, PewdiePie, and Rooster Teeth. Exclusive original films include dramas like King of the Dancehall, comedies such as Lazer Team, and even documentaries such as Katy Perry’s Will You Be My Witness.

Use VPN with Google Play Music + YouTube Red

Google Play Music

Free Google Play Music Subscription

Lastly, this service also comes with a free monthly Google Play Music subscription. This subscription is normally worth $10. Better yet, subscribers to Google Play Music also get a free subscription to YouTube Red as well. This eliminates having to subscribe to two different services.

A Google Play Music subscription allows unlimited, ad-free music that you can take anywhere, much like what you get with YouTube Red.

 

Is The Linksys WRT3200ACM Unflashable With DD-WRT?

Over the past few months, Linksys has changed the hardware of the WRT3200ACM. Since September 2017, the WRT3200ACM has a new NAND chip. For those of us who have long since abandoned factory firmware due to a seemingly never-ending supply of backdoors and bugs like the KRACK attack, this is not good news. The WRT3200ACM’s hardware change has rendered the router unflashable to open source firmware such as DD-WRT and OpenWRT.

NAND Flash Memory is a type of nonvolatile storage technology that does not require power to retain data. Linksys has upgraded the WRT3200ACM with a more advanced NAND chip. DD-WRT requires a more complex Linux kernel to match these changes. There is yet to be an update to the DD-WRT firmware for the WRT3200ACM.

What many people don’t understand is that upgrading a router isn’t really based on a model or model number but that firmware is developed for the chips internally. So even a small version change on a router can make a HUGE difference when it comes to open source comparability.

Once you get deeper into this world, as we at FlashRouters have, you see how often this happens and how frustrating it can be to users as well as developers.

The Future of the WRT3200ACM DD-WRT FlashRouter

Is this the end of the WRT3200ACM DD-WRT FlashRouter?

The shaky future of the WRT3200ACM is an important concern for us here at FlashRouters as is the entire popular WRT line of Linksys routers.

Since we have become aware of this complication, we have been in constant contact with Linksys as well as developers of Open Source firmware in regards to this issue to try and work out a solution.

However, it is kind of like starting from scratch. Usually that can mean months of work before anything changes.there are no working builds for the WRT3200ACM with new hardware. Only models with serial numbers starting with 198106 can be flashed. For the time being, only re-certified WRT3200ACMs are available.

What is a Re-Certified Router?

As newer WRT3200ACMs cannot be flashed, for the foreseeable future, only re-certified devices will be available. What is a re-certified router, you ask? Now is a good time to explain the difference between new, re-certified, and “open box” routers.

We receive our re-certified routers directly from the manufacturer, in this case, Linksys. These devices have been “triple tested” in that they have been opened and inspected by a customer, sent back to Linksys, evaluated by their testing team, and finally appraised by the FlashRouters Support Team.

Our re-certified routers are cosmetically perfect and arrive with the same warranty as our new models. On the other hand, the routers placed under the “open box” category may have cosmetic defects like slight scratches. Furthermore, open box FlashRouters do not come with a warranty. Due to these limitations, our open box devices are significantly discounted in terms of price.

The FlashRouters placed under the “new” condition arrive in the manufacturer box, after undergoing testing and flashing by our Support Team.

Options for New Devices

If you would prefer to use a new rather than re-certified or open box FlashRouter, comparable options to the WRT3200ACM are available in the “new” condition. The Netgear Nighthawk R7800 DD-WRT FlashRouter (pictured above) uses a 1.7 GHz Broadcom processor alongside four powerful external antennas. This is comparable to the WRT3200ACM, which uses a 1.8 GHz Broadcom processor and four external antennas.

If you would prefer to use a new Linksys model, the Linksys WRT1900ACS/AC v2 is right below the WRT3200ACM in terms of performative ability and it can also be used as an ExpressVPN OpenWRT device.

Have any questions about open source router compatability? Shoot us a message.

How To Stream The 2018 PyeongChang Winter Olympics

February 9th is just around the corner and with that brings the 2018 Winter Olympic Games. These events will take place in PyeongChang, Korea and will run until February 25th. Read on to learn how to stream the 2018 PyeongChang Olympics!

2018 PyeongChang Olympics: What To Look For

As of now, a total of 95 teams have qualified for the games with at least one athlete. Of the 95 qualified teams, 92 are expected to compete. Interestingly enough, North Korea will be allowed to cross the Korean DMZ into South Korea to participate.

The 2018 Winter Olympics will feature 102 events in 15 sports. This will make it the first ever Winter Olympics to surpass 100 medal events.

This time around, four new disciplines have been introduced to the event in PyeongChang. These new events include big air snowboarding, mixed doubles curling, mass start speed walking, and mixed team alpine skiing.

Stream The 2018 PyeongChang Olympics

How To Stream The 2018 PyeongChang Olympics

For our United States readers, streaming is straightforward and easy. NBC will be broadcasting the Winter Olympics on its website and via its NBC Sports app for free! The app is available for iOS, Android, Windows, Roku, Chromecast, and even Amazon Fire TV.

Unfortunately, to access the stream, viewers will have to authenticate with their cable or TV providers. On the other hand, many streaming services such as YouTubeTV include NBC Sports as part of their service. YouTubeTV offers a 30-day free trial and the ability to record shows and includes up to six accounts per household.

UK and Canadian viewers, however, will have access to the Olympic Games via BBC and CBC respectively.

How To Stream The 2018 PyeongChang Olympics by Country

NBC Sports has the stateside rights to stream the Olympics, but the events will be playing on TV stations around the world. Here is who has the rights from Australia to Norway:

  • United States: NBC Sports
  • Canada: CBC
  • United Kingdom: BBC iPlayer
  • Australia: Channel 7
  • Germany: ZDF
  • France: France TV
  • Denmark: DR TV
  • Spain: RTVE
  • India: Star Sports
  • Norway: TV 2
  • New Zealand: Sky Sports

Stream The 2018 PyeongChang Olympics From Anywhere

Given that NBC only allows U.S.-based customers to view the stream, a solid VPN service provider should be considered to keep secure streaming options open for you.

With a Virtual Private Network, you will be able to change your server location to a UK or Canadian IP address to access the BBC or CBC. This will allow you to get around geographic restrictions and view the Olympic Games from outside those countries.

Top Rated VPNs For Streaming The 2018 Winter Olympics

  • NordVPN – A very popular service, thanks to double data encryption feature (AKA Double VPN).
  • ExpressVPN – Popular premium VPN provider with top performance in Asia and Australia.
  • HideMyAss – Most overall US & UK server options.

Furthermore, to keep up with high-quality streams and all the bandwidth involved, a high powered router is recommended as well. Better yet, a router with open-source firmware such as DD-WRT or Tomato to supercharge your performance would be preferable.

Thankfully, these are all features that come with a FlashRouter. FlashRouters are powerful open source routers that come pre-flashed. This allows the router to be supercharged to its fullest capabilities, including the ability to run a VPN on your entire home wireless network.

Top Rated Routers For Streaming 2018 Olympics

Linksys WRT1900ACS DD-WRT RouterR7800 Nighthawk DD-WRT RouterAsus RT-AC5300 DD-WRT Router
Wireless-AC1900 Mbps
1.6 Ghz Marvell Processor
4 Ext Antennas
Wireless-AC2600 Mbps
1.7 Ghz Broadcom Processor
4 Ext Antennas
Wireless-AC5300 Mbps
1.4 GHz Marvell Processor
8 Ext Antennas

What is WPA3: The Next Step in WiFi Encryption + Router Security

The Wi-Fi Alliance, the worldwide network of companies that brings you Wi-Fi, has announced they are working on WPA3. WPA3 is a new wireless protocol that will replace the current WPA2 standard and enhance Wi-Fi security.

What Is The Wi-Fi Alliance?

In 1999, a slew of visionary companies came together to form a global non-profit organization. This organization held the goal of driving the best user experience using wireless technology, regardless of the brand.

In 2000, the group adopted the term Wi-Fi as the official term to refer to its technical work. It then announced its official name, The Wi-Fi Alliance.

With the adoption of Wi-Fi continuously growing worldwide, hundreds of companies and dozens of countries participate in the organization. Together, they work to drive new technologies and applications for Wi-Fi use.

How Will WPA3 Differ From WPA2?

WPA3 replacing WPA2 is a big deal because it currently protects your Wi-FI router as well as all connected devices. WPA2 was hit by the massive KRACK Attack a few months ago, leaving routers and devices vulnerable to attacks.

With WPA2 approaching 14 years old, the upgrade to WPA3 is welcomed with open arms. Currently, some major features that the Wi-FI Alliance is building into WPA3 are:

  • Robust protections even when users choose passwords that fall short of typical complexity recommendations.
  • A simplified process of configuring security for devices that have limited or no display interface.
  • Strengthened user privacy in open networks through individualized data encryption.
  • A 192-bit security suite, aligned with the Commercial National Security Algorithm (CNSA) Suite from the Committee on National Security Systems, will further protect Wi-Fi networks with higher security requirements such as those in use in government, defense, and industrial sectors.

Unfortunately, existing hardware in current Wi-Fi routers may not be compatible with new WPA3 firmware updates. However, this is likely due to new certification requirements of the new protocol.

What Can You Do Now To Protect Yourself?

Thankfully, here at FlashRouters, we provide the latest firmware open-source firmware updates for DD-WRT among many others. As of now, our FlashRouters currently only support up to WPA2 encryption. But open-source firmware and the ability to use a VPN can secure your home network to the best of its abilities.

Check out our Router Finder or our Best DD-WRT Routers For 2018 to find your perfect Wi-FI router!