How to pick the Best USB Adapter

Sometimes, the original Wi-Fi adapters you get with PCs or laptops can be less than premium and can get outdated straight out of the manufacturer. The best way to ensure you using the latest parts for the job, you may need to invest in aftermarket adapters. If you’re building a new system as a project or want the best USB adapter for your new rig, there are many options to choose from.

Boosting your Wi-Fi speed is all about having the right setup in place. When you have the right adapter for the job, you will be able to play games, stream, and download faster than ever before. The only issue is knowing which works best for your needs. Using a USB adapter is one of the easiest ways to add 802.11ac  access to a desktop PC, especially if the connection is erratic.

 We spend a lot of time testing different models against both laptops and desktop PCs to come up with what we think are the best USB  adapters available in the market.

1.    Techkey USB 3Wi-Fi Dongle

The Techkey dongle is the perfect accessory for your desktop or laptop when in an area with low connectivity. The wireless dongle is made with two antennas that ensure a full range connection and strong stability on both sides.

The internet is excellent, peaking at a speed of 867mbps on the 5 GHz, and it is around 300Mbps when on the 2.4 GHz band. You won’t be experiencing any inconsistencies in performance and lagging during online gaming. Streaming HD videos are flawless, and the availability of USB 3 making it versatile.

You could easily create a hotspot with the Soft AP feature if you have a weak wired connection and boost your mobile devices or connect more devices. The installation is simple and comes with a user manual and a CD drive to guide you through the process. 

The ultra-fast AC1200 wireless adapter speed with 802.11ac is excellent for gaming or activities that need a stable connection like video editing. It’s supported by all WLAN routers so that there is no interference from other wireless or Bluetooth devices nearby. It works with any aftermarket Wi-Fi routers and is compatible with Mac OS, Windows, and even Ubuntu Linux.

The company offers a one-year warranty, and the build quality is outstanding. The adapter is well-performing and very affordable, making it a great addition to your gaming gear.

Pros

  • Bargain price
  • Good range
  • Fantastic AC 1900 speeds    
  • Very affordable
  • can be used on both Windows and OS PCs
  • Easy installation
  • WLAN security protocols
  • Has two antennas

2.    Netgear Nighthawk USB Adapter

The Netgear Nighthawk is designed to fit with any wireless router and can be used in the 2.4 GHz giving speeds up to 600mbps or 5 GHz with speeds up to 1300mbps.

If you are an avid gamer or require a constant high internet speed, with the Netgear adapter, streaming videos or playing online games will be more satisfactory. You will get more connections due to the dual-band and more bandwidth capacity courtesy 3×4 MIMO design. You can use it as a hotspot to connect more devices.

you can upload and download data from a wireless connection using the 3×4 MIMO network because it offers high bandwidth capacity. The USB can work with many routers in the market and will provide faster speeds at 802.11ac, giving your computer more excellent coverage and performance.

 The product takes advantage of the faster speeds of USB 3 to make streaming your games or videos fast without lag. This way, you can play with the worry of connection dips, which automatically disconnect you from the network. The Nighthawk can be used for both Windows and OS PCs. It uses exclusive Beamforming + technology, which increases the product’s speed, coverage, and reliability.

 The adapter comes with a manual in a CD drive, a quick start guide, and a magnetic cradle with a USB  cable so that it can be placed in the best position for grabbing a Wi-Fi connection. You will love the stand it comes with. It’s sleek, but you will only get to use it when you are stationary.

Pros

  • Great speed
  • Easy setup
  • USB 3with explicit Beamforming+
  • Works with any routers
  • Comes with a magnetic cradle

Reviews

According to a user, they found the adapter very useful with blazing speeds and worked better after they disabled Swusb. The connection stays stable and does not have dips. 

Another user said the installation was easy and performance was beyond what they expected. The adapter has a good range.

One user said he was able to use the adapter for both Windows and OS devices and got a secure connection in all of them.

The design of the adapter is sleek with a high mount that has a magnetic cradle for attaching on metal surfaces. Software updates are readily available from the Netgear website.

One user says that after getting the device, he was able to triple his Wi-fi speeds. The folks at Netgear have a fantastic customer service that is responsive. Exchanges are done promptly to make sure you have your internet connection any time you need it.

3.    Asus PCE- AC68 PCIe Adapter

The PCE-AC68 is one of the best USB adapters when it comes to Wireless adapters. With the adapter, you will reach the fastest speeds from both 802.11ac, or802.1n routers work by combining a robust PCI Express card with three large amplified antennas. The Wi-Fi adapter has a dual-band 4×4 design that is capable of 1000 Mbps over the 2.4GHz band and  5GHz band gets you 2100 Mbps.

The Asus adapter comes in two parts: the PCI Express card that you connect to your PC and the antennas. The card carries custom heat sync that makes it quiet to run since it disperses heat for more stable and reliable nonstop operation. It’s well designed and built to make it durable.

The adapter supports MU-MIMO and carries a flexible antenna design that allows for the customised placing of the three antennas. It’s compatible with Windows 7 and 10 for both 32 and 64-bit variants.  

You will get  50% faster speeds thanks to NitroQAM (1024-QAM) technology. The PCE-AC68adapters can detect wireless locations and captures transmissions using three external antennas and high-powered beam-packing to provide a fast, stable, and reliable connection. This ensures no lag when gaming and streaming any bandwidth-intensive operations in heated environments.

The Asus wireless dongle has an external antenna base that gives flexible antenna placement which enables the users to get the best coverage, and the R-SMA antenna connectors are compatible with most antennas. The three antennas can attach directly to the PCIe card.

If you want to enjoy fast and stable internet connection, the Asus PCE will sort you out. With a robust two-way transmission and connection boosting design, the PCE-AC68 has a two-way communication which extends Wi-Fi coverage. The extensive coverage eliminates chances of dead zones at any location, offering fast and uninterrupted HD streaming and smooth multiplayer gaming experience.

Avid gamers and videographers who require a stable and reliable Wi-Fi network will appreciate the adapter for its fast speeds. You can connect your antenna directly to the PCI card for compact installation and get the most out of your connection with the dual-band,3×3 design adapter.

Pros

  • Fast wireless performance
  • Excellent build quality
  • Easy to install
  • Well priced
  • Custom heat sink
  • NitroQAM (1024-QAM) technology
  • Dual Bandwidth

Reviews

According to customers who purchased the Asus unit, users found the wireless connection to be very fast and reliable have no lags,

Another user commented that the Asus adapter is easy to install and runs quietly thanks to the compact heat sinks that is responsible for dissipating heat.

One user said the unit is well built to last for long and at its price point, the adapter is a bargain for the features it packs.

Conclusion

When buying a USB adapter, it is essential to consider your dongle placement. Where are the USB ports located on your computer? How many they are because you need to designate one for the adapter?

Consider the antennas, are they removable, and can they be adjusted to customise the setting? Larger antennas are suitable for wireless connection when there are a distance and obstacle between the router and the adapter.

The market is flooded with adapters, and getting the best USB adapter can seem daunting. Take your time and conduct your own research to find what feature works best for you. Consider the speed of the connection, features, compatibility, and whether you have enough free USB ports on your computer.

The adapters we have reviewed here are the best in the market today. If you want a cheap dongle to boost your wired internet connection, the Techkey dongle is an excellent device. If you are looking for a USB adapter with crazy high speed, the Asus PCE is the adapter to get.