Are you looking to set up a wireless connection with an extended range and better speeds? Or maybe you’re not a fan of cabling but would still like to expand the network reception of your gaming rig? If yes, getting the best PCIe WiFi Card may be all you need. A good PCIe WiFi card will provide you with more benefits than what you get from USB wireless adapters. WiFi cards often come with two or more antennas capable of providing long-range signals, allowing you to enjoy better gaming or streaming experience.
There are many different options to choose from, which can make the buying process a little stressful. Not to worry though, we’ve created a list of the best PCIe WiFi cards below to help you get the ideal product for your rig. But before we get into the works, here are some helpful factors you need to consider when choosing a PCIe WiFi card.
Number of Antennas
The higher the number of antennas on your WiFi card, the better. Most WiFi cards are designed with 2-3 antennas. These antennas help extend the range of your WiFi, allowing you to enjoy more wireless stability and reliability. Whether you’re playing games or streaming videos, a good Wi-Fi card with high-quality antennas will provide you with excellent reception, ensuring that you enjoy the best experience possible.
Bandwidth and Speed
You want to ensure that the PCIe Wi-Fi card you choose is one with a dual-band. With a dual-band WiFi card, you’ll be able to switch between 2.4GHz and 5 GHz band speeds easily. While the 5 GHz band is best for high-speed gaming, the 2.4 GHz band is ideal for downloading images and streaming videos. You should ensure that the Wi-Fi card you choose is one that can provide as much speed as your internet service allows.
Most PCIe Wi-Fi cards can deliver up to 1 Gigabit throughput, which should be enough for your online gaming and video streaming. However, there are also adapters capable of delivering up to 3 gigabits for those who need them.
Operating System Support
You want to choose a PCIe Wi-Fi card that works with your PC’s operating system. Ensure that your Wi-Fi card can work natively with your rig instead of trying to find a way to make it work. While there’s always a chance that you can devise a way to make an unsupported card work with your setup, you’ll only want to do that if you have great technical skills. The best thing to do is to always choose a PCIe Wi-Fi card that works natively with your computer’s operating system.
The size of your PCIe WiFi card is another essential factor to consider. This can be quite essential if your PC case is a small one. You need to ensure that the card you choose can fit into your PC case. All you need to do is measure your case as this will tell you the maximum height your Wi-Fi card can be. Once you’ve done that, take note of the card’s size to see if it aligns with your measurement. Those with a tall rig won’t have a problem fitting their PCI express Wi-Fi cards into their PC cases.
Quick Look: Best PCIe WIFI Cards
- TP-Link AC1200 PCIe WiFi Card
- ASUS PCE-AC88 AC3100 4×4 802.11AC PCIe WIFI Card
- FebSmart Wireless N PCIe Wireless Network Adapter
- Gigabyte GC-Wbax200 PCIe Expansion Card
- ASUS PCE-AC56 PCI Wireless Express Adapter
- TP-Link WiFi 6 AX3000 PCIe WiFi Card
- TGVi’s Wireless PCIe WiFi Card
- Gigabyte GC-WB867D-I REV Wireless Expansion Card
- Rosewill RNX-AC1900PCE Network Card
- fenvi PCIe WiFi 6 AX200 PCIe Wi-Fi 6 802.11ax Card
1. TP-Link AC1200 PCIe WiFi Card
Best Overall PCIe Wi-Fi Card
The TP-Link AC1200 PCIe WiFi Card is one of the top wireless adapters you can buy for online gaming and video streaming. Endowed with a dual-band receiver, this Wi-Fi card allows you to utilize the full potential of your internet connection by providing speeds over 800Mbps on its 5GHz band and 300Mbps on its 2.4 GHz band. To make things even better, this TP-Link PCIe wireless card also features Bluetooth 4.2 technology, which has ten times more packet capacity and 2.5 times faster than the inferior Bluetooth 4.0.
The TP-Link AC1200 PCIe WiFi Card is quite easy to install as well. All you have to do is simply plug the device into your card slot, and you're good to go. It's supported by Windows 7, 8, 8.1, and 10 on 32 and 64-bit computers. This Wi-Fi card comes with two high-gain antennas that help increase the range of your existing Wi-Fi. Whether you're looking to get a better online gaming experience or maybe you simply want flawless HD video streaming, this TP-Link PCI express wireless card is one that can provide you with both.
2. ASUS PCE-AC88 AC3100 4×4 802.11AC PCIe WIFI Card
Best High-Value Wi-Fi Card
The ASUS PCE-AC88 AC3100 WiFi Card is considered one of the best PCIe WiFi cards for PC thanks to its efficiency and flexibility. This PCI express wireless card is a 4x4 dual-band, high-throughput wireless card capable of delivering up to 3100Mbps speed. Unlike the TP-Link AC1200 above, the 5 GHz band of the Asus PCE-AC88 allows you up to 2100Mbps while its 2.4 GHz band provides you with up to 1000Mbps.
You also get a custom heat sink that helps dispel heat effectively, ensuring that your PCIe Wi-Fi card gets no heat-related problem. However, the main highlight of the ASUS PCE-AC88 is the antenna it comes with. This PCI express card comes with four external antennas that help enhance performance while increasing range.
To make things even better, this wireless adapter also features an external antenna magnetic base that allows you to place your antennas in an area where you can get maximum coverage. With this four-receive and four-transmit antenna device, you can carry out HD video streaming and engage in online gaming while enjoying the best speeds your network has to offer.
It even comes with MU-MIMO technology, and you can also attach each external antenna directly to your PCIe Wi-Fi card to create a custom build. Whether you're looking for a reliable connection, data transfer speed, or an excellent PCIe card that provides you with high bandwidth, the ASUS PCE-AC88 is one of the best dual-band wireless cards you can choose.
3. FebSmart Wireless N PCIe Wireless Network Adapter
Great Value for Money
If one of your main priorities when getting a product is value, the Febsmart Wireless N PCIe Wireless Network Adapter is an option you want to look at. While it may not come with the speed of the ASUS PCE-AC88, it sure offers some great potential with it being a dual-band Wi-Fi card. Like the TP-Link Wi-Fi card above, you get up to 300Mbps on its 2.4 GHz band and 867Mbps on its 5GHz band. However, unlike the TP-Link, this WiFi adapter also features other technologies, such as 2x2 MU-MIMO and beamforming.
It comes with Bluetooth 4.1 technology allowing you to share data with compatible devices. You also get a heat sink capable of dispelling heat efficiently, so your wireless network card doesn't run into a heat-related issue. The Febsmart Wireless Network Adapter is such an excellent PCIe card to use for daily web surfing as well as complex tasks like online gaming and HD video streaming. It is easy to install and it supports multiple operating systems, including Linux (ATH9K) and Windows 10.
The two detachable external antennas it comes with provides good network performance and reliability. While you won't get the kind of performance featured on the ASUS PCE-AC88, the one year warranty, lifetime support, 30-day money-back guarantee, and affordability makes this Wi-Fi adapter an excellent value for money.
4. Gigabyte GC-Wbax200 PCIe Expansion Card
The Gigabyte GC-WbaX200 PCIe Expansion Card is one piece of tech you're going to love. This PCIe wireless adapter comes with a host of features that makes it one of the best WiFi PCI cards on the market. First off, it features Intel's WiFi 6 chipset, a chip noted to provide users with fast and reliable wireless network connections. This dual-band wireless adapter comes with the latest Bluetooth 5.0 technology, allowing users to transfer files at a better speed than what you get on the TP-Link wireless card above.
You get two external antennas for network reliability as well as MU-MIMO TR/TX technology to share your network speed efficiently. With that said, this less than $50 wireless PCIe card isn't the best when it comes to speed. Although the brand has advertised the card to offer up to 2100Mbps, many users have found it not to go beyond 500Mbps on both bands.
While this may be a network or internet connection issue, it's still worth noting that you may not get the best speeds out of this PCIe adapter. However, if you're more concerned about reliability than speed, this right here is one of the most reliable PCIe cards you can choose.
5. ASUS PCE-AC56 PCI Wireless Express Adapter
Best PCIe WiFi Card for Large Spaces
The fifth product on our list of best PCIe Wi-Fi cards is the ASUS PCE-AC56. This card is at the top of the class when it comes to reliability and performance. While it doesn't come with four antennas like its sibling above, it still packs a decent punch for anyone looking to engage in online gaming or HD video streaming. The ASUS PCE-AC56 is a dual-band PCIe WiFi card like most of the cards on our list. Its 5GHZ band speed can go up to 867MBps while its 2.4 GHz band does a maximum of 400Mbps speed. You also get support for multiple modulation technologies, such as 16 and 64 QAM, CCK, DBPSK, and DQPSK.
The ASUS PCE-ACE56 PCIe WiFi card is considered one of the best Wi-Fi cards for large spaces thanks to its two long-range external antennas. You'll be able to detect where to get the best signal, and since it also features long-range reception, you won't be experiencing any problems no matter how large your place may be. Installing this dual-band wireless PCIe card is pretty straightforward.
It supports all versions of Windows but doesn't work on the Linux OS. The heat sink here is as good as they come, and you're surely going to be getting great connectivity options from this PCIe WiFi card. If stability, long-range connection, reliability, and reasonable FPS rates are what you're looking for, this is one of the best PCIe WiFi cards you can choose.
6. TP-Link WiFi 6 AX3000 PCIe WiFi Card
Best PCIe WiFi Card For Gaming
The TP-Link WiFi 6 AX3000 PCIe Wi-Fi Card is another good option you can choose if you're looking for a low-latency WiFi PCIe card. Designed with Intel's WiFi 6 standard, the AX3000 provides you with ultra-low latency as well as uninterrupted connectivity via MU-MIMO and OFDMA technologies. With these connectivity options, your online gaming experience won't remain the same. Even in the busiest of networks, this WiFi card is designed to provide users with nothing but the best and most reliable connections.
The TP-Link WiFi 6 PCIe card is also a dual-band Wi-Fi card with external antennas. It can provide users with up to 2.4Gbps connection speed, with its 5GHz band providing up to 2402Mbps and its 2.4 GHz offering 574Mbps. The two high-performance and multi-directional antennas embedded on this WiFi card allow you to extend your wireless capabilities by a long-range. You also get to enjoy Bluetooth 5.0 on this Wi-Fi PCIe card.
Whether you want to connect your headphone or controller, the Bluetooth 5.0 technology, which is two times faster and offers four times coverage than the 4.2 version, will ensure that you connect all your peripherals with no issues. If you're keen on getting the best PCIe WiFI card that minimizes lag and allows you to enjoy great real-time gaming and VR experience, this is one of the top external antenna PCIe wireless cards you can buy.
7. TGVi’s Wireless PCIe WiFi Card
Low-budget PCIe Wireless Card
If you've got a limited budget but would still like to transition from cables to wireless cards, the TGVi Wireless PCIe Wi-Fi Card is one of the tops wireless cards you can get. This WiFi card is specifically designed for desktop PCs, and it's compatible with Windows 10, 8, and 8.1. It can be installed without the need for drivers; simply install the PCIe card in the slot on your motherboard, and you're good to go.
It's a dual-band PCIe Wi-Fi card that offers 300Mbps on both the 5GHz band and the 2.4GHz band. This card is compatible with various slots, including X1, X4, X8, and X16. It's designed with Qualcomm's Atheros chipset, which translates to great performance.
And thanks to the high-gain antennas embedded in this Wi-Fi PCIe card, you'll be able to enjoy excellent reliability. If you're on a budget and won't like to spend up to $20 to get a great wireless PCIe Wi-Fi card, the TGVi is the best PCIe WiFi Card you can get.
8. Gigabyte GC-WB867D-I REV Wireless Expansion Card
The Gigabyte GC-WB867D-1 REV Wireless Expansion Card is another top-notch PCI express adapter you can use in place of your USB adapter. This WiFi card for PC offers excellent performance as you'll get both decent speeds and a lag-free experience that makes it ideal for online gaming. It is a WiFi card with two detachable antennas that can be hooked up via cable. This allows you to get the optimum position for your internet speed, and since it comes with a magnetic base, you'll be able to mount it in no time.
The 5GHz range of this WiFi card offers up to 875Mbps, while the 2.4GHz range provides up to 433Mbps. This means that whether you want to watch a movie on Netflix or settle down for a night of online gaming, the Gigabyte WiFi card is one that will get you through all. Additionally, it comes with Bluetooth 4.2, which allows you to hook up your Bluetooth peripherals, including controllers, headsets, etc.
However, you'll need to connect the Bluetooth via USB, which is an option many people won't like. But if that isn't a concern and you'd love to have a WiFi card with an extended range, dependable performance, and outstanding reliability, then the Gigabyte GC-WB867D-I REV is one of the top WiFi cards you want to choose.
9. Rosewill RNX-AC1900PCE Network Card
Perfect PCIe Adapter Card for Demanding Streamers and Gamers
Do you play games or stream videos every time? Would you want the best PCIe wireless adapter card without spending tons of cash? If yes, the Rosewill RNX-AC1900PCE Network Card is one wireless card model you should get for your computer. You get everything you need in this Wi-Fi card, including a decent performance, incredible speeds, good range, and a great price point. It features up to 1300Mbps on its 5GHz band and 600Mbps on its 2.4GHz band. This allows you to stream and play online games with no connection cons.
The Rosewill RNX-AC1900PCE is designed with three great antennas. These antennas are omnidirectional, allowing you to enjoy nothing but the most reliable connection possible. It's compatible with all Windows OS editions, and it's relatively easy to install. However, it's worth noting that some users have experienced driver-related issues on Windows 10.
The heat sink it comes with is also effective, so you're not going to be experiencing any heat-related issues. If you're a keen gamer or video streamer who doesn't want to spend over $50 to get a decent PCIe Wi-Fi card, then this is one choice you're going to love.
10. fenvi PCIe WiFi 6 AX200 PCIe Wi-Fi 6 802.11ax Card
A Good Mixture of Speed and Flexibility
The Fenvi PCIe Wi-Fi 6 AX200 WiFi card is another great option you can work with if you're looking for something fast. It is a latency-free wireless card that allows you to play games and stream movies like no other. Just connect this WiFi card to a gaming router, and you're good to go. This dual-band card can provide up to 2400Mbps on its 5GHz band and 574Mbps when it's in its 2.4GHz range. You also get support for multiple operating systems, including Linux, Chrome OS, and Windows.
Thanks to its OFDMA modulation, users are going to experience a lag-free performance while using this card. To make things even better, this PCIe Wi-Fi card also features Bluetooth 5.0, thereby allowing you to connect all your peripherals, including keyboard, mouse, headset, controller, and more. It supports beamforming as well as MU-MIMO and also comes with two cable antennas that can be easily detached.
The only con about this PCIe Wi-Fi card is that while it sure offers excellent speeds, those speeds aren't consistent, especially when you're downloading large files. Although these speed inconsistencies are neither constant nor affect the performance of the Wi-Fi card in any drastic way, it's only ideal that they are mentioned and noted. While this Wi-Fi card may not be perfect, it's still one of the topmost PCIe cards anyone can choose.
Whether you’re setting up a gaming rig, building a new desktop, or you simply want to enhance the speed and range of your laptop or PC, the best PCIe WiFi card can make a lot of difference. With the tips and products in this article, you’re bound to make the right buying decision. Simply ensure that you carefully consider the pros and cons of each Wi-Fi card while noting the necessary factors to consider when choosing the ideal card. Do that, and you’ll be well on your way to enhancing the connectivity, range, and speeds of your computer’s network.