Router upgrade confusion


I’d been thinking about upgrading my wifi router lately. I purchased it about 2-3 years ago, its a Netgear G and it does ok. My connection speed is acceptable though I notice I frequently get knocked off the net for no reason. I’m wondering about a new router because I now have a rather large network at home. With two phones sporting wifi 3-4 laptops, a printer, my old desktop its amazing how many things talk over our network. Here’s my dilemma. I have little knowledge of wifi other than knowing that my devices can open connections without being physically tied to other hardware. When I bought my Netgear device I asked the associate at Circuit City which to buy. I wasn’t certain whether or not my MacbookPro would benefit from the Super G+ on one rack or if I should splurge an extra $20-$30 for an “N”. I had all kinds of questions and he assured me that the enhanced G+ stuff did not follow spec and that I’d need specific hardware to benefit from it. He also told me that the my Mac might not get anything from the N router.

I’m still confused on how to check which versions of wifi are supported by which device. I see a few “N” routers priced around the $34 range then there are other more pricey models. I know the old saying, “you git what you pay for” but I’m still lost. How does one go about intelligently purchasing a router these days? Also, along the same lines, how do you spec modern processors? There has been such a shift in CPU technology, I miss the days when AMD was secretly on top when you could buy a more powerful CPU for a fraction of the price of the more popular CPU. The numbers seem to mean nothing and everything sports Core Duo so what gives? I’m slightly embarrassed to admit how stoopid I am with today’s tech but I’m willing to bet I’m not alone.

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