Netgear Nighthawk R7000 AC1900 Wireless Router Review

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Netgear Nighthawk R7000: Setup

R7000_Front-1Over the years we have found that manufactures to a really good job of packaging these routers to make installation and setup very easy.  The Netgear Nighthawk is no different.  The Nighthawk R7000 ships with the main unit, three external detachable antennas, an Ethernet cable, power cable and adapter and a quick install guide.  We are glad that there is nothing else to clutter up our offices: it looks like manufactures are starting to take the hint that there is need to include driver CDs or stickers or a bunch of extra pamphlets and advertising.

The Netgear Nighthawk R7000 is designed much different than the older R6300 in that is has external antennas as well a host of buttons and LED indicators on the front.  Looking across the front panel we see LED indicators for Power, Internet Connectivity, 2.4 GHz Wireless, 5 GHz Wireless, USB 3.0 and 2.0, Ethernet ports 1-4, WiFi On/Off Button, and a WPS Button.

R7000-aOn the back of the router, we see a Reset Button, Ethernet Ports, Internet Port, USB 2.0 port, Power On/Off, and the Power Connector.

The Nighthawk is one of the largest home networking devices Netgear produces.  It measures in at 13.7 x 10.1 x 3.1 inches and sits flat on the desk unlike their R6100/6200/6300 routers which “stand” up. Overall, the Netgear R7000 takes up a bit more room on the desk than the older R6300.  You do have the ability to mount the router vertically on the wall, but Netgear doesn’t provide any sort of desk stand for vertical placing on your desk.

R7000_Back-2After connecting everything for use with our network, we powered the Nighthawk on and navigated to the Netgear’s router homepage (at Netgear’s Genie interface is almost identical to what Netgear is shipping for their recent model routers such as the R6100.  For users of Netgear’s older routers, the menu and options will look very familiar. Netgear has had one of the better looking GUIs and the programmers didn’t mess with the GUI that gives a user pretty much everything that you need.


Netgear has a pretty simple but effective Setup Wizard that you can use to configure the router.  Just type in or to detect the internet settings and automatically set up the router. Most newcomers to networking will choose this route as it steps a normal user though everything they need to get up and running in a short amount of time.  More experienced users will choose to manually set up and configure the router which really doesn’t take that much more effort.  It is nice to go through the Genie Wizard initially and then explore the “Advanced Menu” tabs to see what else you want to do.

Some highlights of the R7000 features include the ability to activate a “Guest” Network, Parental Controls, Advanced QoS, Beamforming+, DLNA, ReadySHARE USB access, VPN support, and manual or automatic channel selection.

Now that we have completed our tour of the user interface, let’s see how well the Nighthawk R7000 router performs with its wireless speeds and performance.  

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  • Michael

    I bought this router 2 weeks ago and I’m very satisfied. Great speed, and I like that there’s an on/off button for the wireless signal, so you man turn it off manually too. I like to keep the radiation levels low at all times.
    I experimented a lot with the signal and radiation levels, and found that the router has great coverage and speed even without the antennas. speed+coverage+low radiation= just the right product for me. Thanks

  • AuckNZ

    Have had this router for about 6 months now. Easy to set up, Excellent signal. It has never failed me. Runs 24/7 without a problem. It sounds like others have had some issues here, but I cant recommend the Nighthawk highly enough. Easy to use interface (either browser based or Genie).

    I use it on a home network, streaming videos, radio, NAS, 2 x PC’s, laptop, phones and ipads, plus backup drives.

    Bottom line – Excellent product. It just works.

  • kmcghghy

    I’ve been
    reading reviews now after I tell Netgear that I’m going to write a crappy
    review on every review forum I can find because of my issues and it appears now
    that I’m reading them, that this is a known issue that they just refuse to fix. I’ve been an IT System Administrator for over
    20 years and I would not buy another Netgear product again after dealing with
    their support which doesn’t admit there is a known problem.

    I had the
    Netgear WNDR3400 and never had any trouble with it. I bought the Nighthawk R7000 and for $200 and
    my experience with other Netgear hardware I thought this unit would be great.

    I have had
    nothing but trouble with it. The
    Nighthawk r7000 is constantly going down. I upgrade firmware and it craps out
    and I have to redo the configuration. I get up in the morning and no wireless,
    I have to reboot it. Sometimes it goes
    down 2-3 times a day. The other day I got up and again no wireless, I rebooted
    and that didn’t fix it. I go into the configuration and it says the wireless is
    turned off. First time I had this issue
    and you have to hold the wireless button on the front for about 10 seconds to
    turn it back on.

    This is
    ridicules that this unit has so many issues. Of course it’s now out of the 90
    warranty and Netgear says as long as the correct lights are on it not a
    hardware issue so pay us to troubleshoot or fix it yourself. When the device is a lemon, you can’t fix



    • enterprise7

      Most reviews that I read, the IT gurus always have problems with the software/hardware at hand while the common user, the product works like a charm

      • kmcghghy

        That’s because you use right out of the box and hope it works on all your needs. Gurus tweet it to work as needed. After my replacement it started having issues again so this time I just trashed I and went and bought an ASUS.

        • enterprise7

          I just purchased the netgear Nighthawk ac5300; you are correct, right out of the box, so far, so good! Good luck with your ASUS!

        • VaultDweller73

          I cant run MS Live Meeting on the Asus RT-AC66U even with factory reset and no firewall. Direct connect to the ISP provided box and it would work but through the router it would not. Had to buy a Netgear just for that pos software to work. I work at home. How’s that for a ridiculous reason to have to buy a Netgear Router? Every other tech piece I own that can be Asus is Asus though.

    • Tommy

      I’m an IT person too Kat. I make a living installing wireless networks in small and medium sized businesses and also in residential homes (some quite large!). This is one of my go-to routers because it is so reliable and has such a long range. Quite a few useful features in it too!

      However, It sounds like the particular unit you had was broken and should’ve been immediately returned. If any of the 30 or 40 R7000 Netgear units I have installed in the past couple years did this (none have) I would’ve returned it. Not sure why you kept beating your head against the wall with a failing unit (until the warranty expired!).

      FYI: Almost all electronic devices have issues like you experienced from time to time. Failures are brand/model agnostic. Whether you talk about Dell, HP, Netgear, TP-Link, Toshiba, Cisco Linksys, Asus, Belkin, D-Link, Samsung, iPhone, LG, Motorola, Ford, Chevy, or whatever. Electronic things simply break. Failures are independent of brand/model and are due to things like power surges, lightning, bad internal electronic components (capacitors, etc.).

      My advice is not to beat your head against the wall with a bad unit for days on end. —> Tommy’s Rule is this: If a firmware upgrade and a ‘hard reset’ doesn’t fix it … it’s going back for replacement.

      • Kat

        I didn’t ‘beat my head against the wall” on this. As I said other users also have issues. Read the reviews. Best Buy, Amazon etc. It did actually go back to Netgear twice.
        Another issue with today’s routers which shouldn’t be an issue with Smart homes is that most routers only handle 32 connections.
        The issue is that it’s only a dual router which only handles a certain number of usable simultaneous connections.
        I had to buy a tri-band router with smart connect which will let me connect up to 96 wireless devices including 54 life bulbs, 8 cameras, 5 arlo’s etc.
        Not many routers will let you connect this many usable simultaneous connections at once. There was only 2 at Fry’s and that’s a complete network store.
        Bottom line network products need to catch up with supply and demand in today’s Smart home environment.

      • alcon04

        Hey Tommy I think Kat is right about the R7000

        some routers are good some are just bad.

        its hard to find a reliable router – if yours works lucky you
        mine worked good for about a year and 1/2 now out of warranty
        WiFi keeps disconnecting – however I have 2 more Wireless routers as access point – So I switch to either one immediately . (So nobody at home complains)

  • Tyson Tree

    I noticed under the specs-} Security section of the review it states it has WEP capable encryption; this is not true. Does not support WEP.

  • FeRaL

    Is this router wall mountable?

    • Digtial Puppy


      From Pg. 2: “You do have the ability to mount the router vertically on the
      wall, but Netgear doesn’t provide any sort of desk stand for vertical
      placing on your desk.”