Affordable. Easy to install. Four LAN ports. Easy QoS settings. Good close-range 5GHz throughput in testing.
Middling 2.4GHz throughput in testing. No USB ports. Non-removable antennas.
- Bottom Line
The D-Link AC1750 Wi-Fi Router DIR-859 is a capable, if basic, budget-priced router for small- or medium-sized homes.
The D-Link AC1750 Wi-Fi Router DIR-859 ($79.99), a budget-priced router designed for small- to medium-sized homes, offers dual-band wireless networking, drag-and-drop QoS settings, and four gigabit LAN ports. It delivered solid performance on our 5GHz throughput tests and takes minutes to install. However, spending $20 more will get you USB connectivity and the overall better performance of our top pick for budget routers, the TP-Link Archer C7 AC1750 Wireless Dual Band Gigabit Router (V2).
Basic Feature Set
The DIR-859 is a black wedge-shaped router with three non-removable antennas, which means you can't swap them out for more powerful high-gain antennas. It measures 2.1 by 6.4 by 4.4 inches (HWD) and is equipped with four gigabit LAN ports, a WAN port, a power button, and WPS button, all located on the rear panel. There's a reset button on the bottom of the router. Whereas other budget routers such as the Linksys EA6350, the TP-Link Archer C7 V2, and the Netgear R6220, offer USB connectivity, the DIR-859 does not.
Based on a Qualcomm 750MHz CPU, the AC1750 DIR-859 is a dual-band router that can reach maximum (theoretical) throughput speeds of up to 450Mbps on the 2.4GHz band and up to 1,300Mbps on the 5GHz band. Although it's an 802.11ac router, it uses older AC technology and does not support newer features such as MU-MIMO sequential data streaming and direct-to-client beamforming. For that, you'll have to step up to the DIR-867 AC1750 dual-band router.
The router is managed using the web-based console or D-Link's QRS mobile app for iOS and Android devices. The console is the same one used by other D-Link routers including the AC1900 MU-MIMO Wi-Fi Router (DIR-878) and the AC1200 Wi-Fi Router (DIR-842). The home screen offers a network map that shows the number of clients connected to the network. To see who is connected, their IP address, and if parental controls are enabled, click on the client icon…
In the Settings menu is a Setup Wizard and submenus for configuring Internet, Wireless, and Network settings. The Wireless menu allows you to create a guest network and configure Security Mode, 802.11 Mode, Wi-Fi Channel and Channel Width, and Transmission Power settings. Here you can also create access schedules for specific clients.
In the Features section is a user-friendly drag-and-drop Quality of Service (QoS) engine and firewall, web-filtering, and port-forwarding settings.
Management settings allow you to view system logs, update the router's firmware, monitor network traffic, and change passwords.
Installing the DIR-859 was quick and easy. After plugging it into my modem and powering it up, I entered http://dlinkrouter.local./ in my browser's address bar and let the wizard detect my internet connection. I created SSID names and passwords for both radio bands and updated the firmware, and the installation was finished. The entire process took about 5 minutes.
Performance was a mixed bag. The DIR-859's score of 66Mbps on our 2.4GHz close-proximity (same-room) test was slower than other budget routers we've tested including the Linksys EA6350 (72Mbps) and the Netgear R6220 (74Mbps). Our Editors' Choice, the TP-Link Archer C7 V2, led with a score of 91Mbps. On the 30-foot test, the DIR-859 garnered 33Mbps, coming in behind the Linksys EA6350 (39Mbps) and the Netgear R6220 (48Mbps). As before, the TP-Link Archer C7 V2 took top honors (62Mbps).
The DIR-859 turned in an impressive score of 489Mbps on the 5GHz close proximity test, outlasting the Linksys EA6350 (427Mbps) and the Netgear R6220 (331Mbps) but not the TP-Link Archer C7 V2 (509Mbps). Results were not quite as impressive on the 30-foot 5GHz test: The DIR-859's score of 125Mbps was only half as fast the TP-Link Archer C7 V2 (250Mbps) and fell short of the Linksys EA6350 (199Mbps). The Netgear R6220 trailed the pack with a score of 104Mbps.
Respectable Budget Router
If you're looking for a capable dual-band router for your small- or medium-sized home, but have a limited budget, the D-Link AC1750 Wi-Fi Router DIR-859 will fill the bill. It's not the fastest router out there and it lacks USB connectivity, but it will handle most everyday networking tasks and is a breeze to install and configure. It performed admirably on our 5GHz throughput tests, but its 2.4GHz performance was mediocre, and it lacks USB ports. If you can spare an extra $20, our Editors' Choice for budget-priced routers, the TP-Link Archer C7 V2, offers better all-around performance and comes with two USB 2.0 ports.
About the Author
John R. Delaney Contributing Editor
As a Contributing Editor for PCMag, John Delaney has been testing and reviewing monitors, TVs, PCs, networking and smart home gear, and other assorted hardware and peripherals for almost 20 years. A 13-year veteran of PC Magazine's Labs (most recently as Director of Operations), John was responsible for the recruitment, training and management of t… See Full Bio
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