Well... where to start on my final thoughts? I know! Build quality. Here I found no issues with the R7000; the plastics are durable, all the solder joints look really good on the PCB, and everything is shielded and heatsinked appropriately. The overall size of the router could be an issue where you don't have much space on your desktop or wherever you install your routers, but this is a router I would make room for.
Performance of the Netgear Nighthawk was stunning to say the least; the Ethernet ports all ran at gigabit speeds, including the WAN port where we typically see a slight drop-off. The 2.4GHz throughput was on par with previously tested solution, but it may actually be better than our testing if you have a 256QAM capable device. 5GHz operation was the most stunning to me and, as you can see in our charts, lead by quite a bit in real-world file transfers, almost touching the mystical 100 MB/s.
There are also quite a few value added features to this router, including the traffic monitor, where you can set your monthly limits and have the router LED change color when you encroach those. You can also have the router shutdown internet access after you reach that limit. Moreover, the QoS features of this router are truly superb; Netgear has setup a database of frequent streaming sites and can optimize your connection based on what you use. The database for QoS also includes an auto update function to keep the list always up to date.
One thing I can say is there is a huge difference having QoS enabled with the Netgear over other solutions. Where my previous router had issues when I would stream YouTube and have magnets downloading on the NAS, the Netgear has been running for three straight days now streaming and downloading without a single hiccup, something that truly impresses me.
PRICING: You can find the Netgear Nighthawk R7000 for sale below. The prices listed are valid at the time of writing but can change at any time. Click the link to see the very latest pricing for the best deal.
United States: The Netgear Nighthawk R7000 retails for $195.99 at Amazon.