Linksys Gaming Router Auto-Detects Killer Network Cards

It's been quite a busy CES for Linksys. Earlier today (Jan. 3), the company took the wraps off the Velop, the router maker's first entry into the growing mesh networking market. Linksys has followed that up with the Max-Stream EA8300, a tri-band AC2200 addition to the company's router lineup, set to arrive for $199.99 this spring.

For gamers, though, the big news for Linksys out of CES will be the WRT32X MU-MIMO Gigabit Gaming Router. Linksys has taken its popular WRT router and souped it up for gaming, with a black look and a lot of LEDs that will make gamers feel right at home.

But the most significant change can be found in the firmware: Linksys partnered with Rivet Networks, which makes the Killer networking adapters found in many high-ending gaming systems, to optimize network performance on the router.

Starting Price: $299.99

Availability: April 2017

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Key Specs: The WRT32X is a tri-band AC3200 with MU-MIMO support for efficiently managing traffic on your Wi-Fi network. But the Killer optimization is the quite literal killer feature here. Linksys' new router can automatically detect a Killer-enabled PC, syncing its engine with your PC's network manager. This "Killer mode" lets the router manage things such as game traffic, downloads and streaming video for a smoother gaming experience that shouldn't impact other users on the network.

Why You Should Care: The WRT32X looks like promising networking gear for the hardcore PC gamer, particularly if you've got a system that already has the Killer networking adapters inside (and given Rivet's leadership in this market, you probably do.)

The shade-under-$300 price tag might give more casual gamers pause, but if you're looking to maximize your gaming rig's performance, this router seems tailor-made for you. We're looking forward to getting the WRT32X into our lab later this spring for testing.

Philip Michaels

Philip Michaels is a Managing Editor at Tom's Guide. He's been covering personal technology since 1999 and was in the building when Steve Jobs showed off the iPhone for the first time. He's been evaluating smartphones since that first iPhone debuted in 2007, and he's been following phone carriers and smartphone plans since 2015. He has strong opinions about Apple, the Oakland Athletics, old movies and proper butchery techniques. Follow him at @PhilipMichaels.