The Fritzbox family from AVM offers suitable routers for DSL, cable or fiber optics. Depending on the price, a Fritzbox has different functions. Find the best model with our buying guide.
The Fritzbox is a true all-rounder for the home network. As a modem router for DSL/VDSL, cable, fiber or 5G/LTE, it brings all devices onto the Internet. It serves as a WLAN router for notebooks, tablets, and smartphones, and its network switch connects desktop PCs and network-attached storage (NAS) in the local network via Ethernet cable.
Some Fritzboxes have a telephone system with integrated answering machines - recognizable by the DECT feature. This allows you to use up to six cordless phones. In addition, analog telephone and fax machines can also be connected. Finally, a Fritzbox also serves as a control center for suitable smart home devices such as switchable sockets, heating thermostats and lamps.
Fritz-OS: Regularly new functions via update
In addition to the numerous functions, the update policy of manufacturer AVM also speaks for a Fritzbox. Because there are regularly comprehensive free updates for the Fritz-OS router operating system. This year, the update to Fritz-OS 7.50 is on the agenda: The new firmware brings many innovations such as a simpler VPN via Wireguard and improved telephony functions. Those who want to get an idea of it already can install a pre-release version, provided that the Fritzbox is supported. One advantage of Fritz OS updates: Usually, even older devices like the now almost nine-year-old 7490 model get the latest version.
Important to know: The latest Fritz OS version is not immediately available for all devices. A new firmware is usually first available for top models like the Fritzbox 7590 AX and 7590; you have to wait a bit for an older model.
Fritzbox models for every connection and every price range
AVM offers models in different price classes for every type of connection - DSL, cable, fiber and mobile. The top devices offer the highest WLAN speed, the most extensive telephony functions and the most connections. The built-in modems are designed for the fastest Internet connections such as VDSL supervectoring or cable Internet with Docsis 3.1: Therefore, these models are future-proof and suitable for a home network with many devices. If your main concern is fast WLAN, you don't have to go for a high-end model like Fritzbox 7590 AX or Fritzbox 6690 Cable. Because the fast WLAN standard Wi-Fi 6 (802.11ax) is also supported by cheaper Fritzboxes like the Fritzbox 7530 AX and the Fritzbox 6660 Cable. On the other hand, these variants lack certain ports for network and telephone devices, which is why they are primarily suitable for somewhat smaller home networks. If you don't need a Fritzbox with a modem because you get a suitable model from your Internet provider, you can use an AVM device that works as a WLAN router: These Fritzboxes can be connected via LAN cable to an existing DSL, cable or fiber optic modem to bring the home network to the Internet. Incidentally, AVM does not yet have a Fritzbox for the latest Wi-Fi 6E WLAN standard.
Fritzbox models for DSL
The current top model for the VDSL connection is the Fritzbox 7590 AX: It uses Wi-Fi 6 and transmits up to 2400 MBit/s over 5 GHz and a maximum of 1200 Mbit/s over 2.4 GHz with the new WLAN standard. It achieves the speed over 5 GHz with four parallel data streams and 80 MHz channel bandwidth or with 160 MHz channel bandwidth with two MIMO streams, which matches the WLAN equipment of most Wi-Fi 6 notebooks.
Four Gigabit LAN ports are available for wired network devices, as well as a Gigabit WAN port if the 7590 AX is to be used with an Internet modem. ISDN telephones and PBXs can still be used via All-IP over the internal So port, as well as analog telephones or fax machines via two a/b ports. As a DECT telephone base, the Fritzbox 7590 AX supplies up to six wireless terminals and peripherals such as a hard disk, USB stick or printer via two USB 3.0 ports.
The Fritzbox 7530 AX is suitable for smaller home networks. It is not slower than the top model when it comes to Internet access: It is also suitable for VDSL supervectoring connections with up to 300 Mbps download speeds. On the other hand, it offers somewhat less WLAN speed: With three MIMO streams over 5 GHz and two over 2.4 GHz, it transmits 1800 and 600 Mbps, respectively, and can only use a channel bandwidth of 80 MHz over 5 GHz.
AVM also saves on the connections: An ISDN port is missing, only one analog phone can be connected and the USB port only manages 2.0 speed - the 7530 AX is hardly suitable as a NAS replacement. It also lacks a WAN port, and one of the four Gigabit LAN ports is reallocated for connecting an external modem. You do not have to compromise on the DECT phone base - the mid-range Fritzbox connects up to six handsets.
The cheapest model for Wi-Fi 6 is the Fritzbox 7510: It supports the new WLAN standard, but only via the 2.4 GHz frequency with up to 600 Mbps. This makes it interesting for very small home networks or for connecting smart home devices, especially since it only offers a Gigabit Ethernet port and a USB 2.0 port. However, it is not inferior to the more expensive models when it comes to Internet connection (VDSL supervectoring) and as a DECT telephone base.
If the WLAN speed of the 11ac standard (Wi-Fi 5) is sufficient for you in the future, the Fritzbox 7590 is the right choice. Apart from the WLAN equipment, it is similar to the Fritzbox 7590 AX: This means, among other things, a VDSL modem for supervectoring, DECT base station for up to six telephones, an ISDN connection and 2 a/b ports, two USB 3.0 sockets for peripheral and storage devices, as well as 4 Gigabit LAN ports and a WAN connection. In terms of WLAN, the Fritzbox performs up to 1733 Mbps over 5 GHz and 800 Mbps over 2.4 GHz with four MIMO streams.
The Fritzbox 7580 has a similar configuration, but a different design. However, its VDSL modem only supports vectoring with up to 100 Mbit/s download rate. The upright router also brings 11ac WLAN with 4x4 data transmission at 1733 Mbit/s over 5 GHz and 800 Mbit/s over 2.4 GHz, as well as MU-MIMO. Like the Fritzbox 7590, it serves as a DECT base station, telephone system and can be connected to two analog devices as well as an ISDN device. It also has two USB 3.0 ports.
The Fritzbox 7490 with a modem for DSL vectoring (up to 100 MBit/s) has a somewhat slower 11ac WLAN (3x3 data rate, maximum 1300 Mbit/s over 5 GHz, maximum 450 Mbit/s over 2.4 GHz) and no MU-Mimo. Otherwise, it offers the same ports - but the 7590 and 7580 have an additional Gigabit WAN port, which allows it to connect directly to cable and fiber modems. With the Fritzbox 7490, you have to use one of the four LAN ports for this.
The Fritzbox 7530 and the Fritzbox 7560 offer themselves as all-rounders for smaller home networks. The 7530 has a DSL modem for supervectoring, the DSL port of the 7560 only supports vectoring. For WLAN, the maximum speed is 866 Mbps (5 GHz) and 400 and 450 Mbps (2.4 GHz), respectively. Both also only have one USB 2.0 port and one port for analog telephones, but they come with a DECT base station.
If you can do without the built-in telephone functions, but otherwise need a comprehensive set of features, the Fritzbox 3490 is a good choice. The rest of its WLAN, LAN and USB features are the same as those of the Fritzbox 7490.
The Fritzbox 7430 with its vectoring DSL modem is suitable for current DSL connections. Otherwise, the configuration with 11n WLAN over 2.4 GHz, Fast Ethernet LAN switch and a USB 2.0 port is only recommendable for very small networks. At least a PBX and DECT bass station are on board.
Fritzboxes for mobile networks
Even without a DSL/VDSL or cable connection, desktop PCs, notebooks, tablets and smartphones in the home network can access the Internet at high data rates. The solution is a Fritzbox from the LTE family that brings the Internet to the home via mobile communications with a suitable rate plan.
The Fritzbox 6850 5G already works with 5G: It supports standalone and non-standalone operation for the new mobile standard and achieves up to 1.3 Gbit/s in download. For WLAN, it uses 11ac with two MIMO streams, which brings a top speed of 866 Mbit/s for the 5 GHz frequency and 400 Mbit/s over 2.4 GHz. Home network devices can also be connected via 4 Gigabit LAN ports and a USB 3.0 jack. The telephony equipment includes a DECT base station and an a/b port.
The Fritzbox 6850 LTE is identical in construction: However, its Cat 4 modem for 4G only delivers a maximum download rate of 150 Mbps.
The top model for LTE is the Fritzbox 6890 LTE: It combines a VDSL modem for supervectoring and an LTE modem, each of which can achieve a download rate of up to 300 Mbps. LTE serves as an alternative Internet connection in case DSL fails, but the two cannot be used in parallel. The 6890 offers the 11ac standard with 4x4 data transmission and MU-MIMO for WLAN. The telephone system supports up to two analog devices and an ISDN phone in addition to DECT phones. The only USB port works at 3.0 speed.
The Fritzbox 6820 LTE allows a maximum download rate of 150 MBit/s via LTE, but only transmits via the 2.4 GHz frequency with up to 450 Mbit/s in WLAN. Apart from a Gigabit LAN port, there are no other connections.
Fritzbox models for fiber optics
There are also Fritzbox routers for Internet connections via fiber optics. The Fritzbox 5590 Fiber is a brand-new announcement: The fiber-optic model is scheduled for release in the course of the next few months. It already supports future transmission speeds of up to 10 Gbit/s, which will be possible with the XGS-PON network technology, as well as the SFP+ type plug-in modules required for this. Thanks to the included SFP connectors, the 5590 Fiber can be used on all current fiber optic connections with passive (GPON) or active technology (AON). It uses Wi-Fi 6 for WLAN: With four MIMO streams and 80 MHz channel bandwidth, it achieves a maximum of 2.4 Gbit/s over 5 GHz and 1.2 Gbit/s over 2.4 GHz. The 2.5 Gigabit port also delivers high speed on the LAN, and there are also four Gigabit ports. It also powers up to six DECT phones and two analog phones. The two USB ports work at 3.0 speed.
Already available is the Fritzbox 5530 Fiber, which is also suitable for GPON and AON connections thanks to the SFP modules. This is because it comes with suitable plug-in modules. In terms of WLAN, it is as fast as the future top model with Wi-Fi 6 over 5 GHz, as it supports a channel bandwidth of 160 MHz. A 2.5 Gigabit port is also on board. However, the rest of the connectivity equipment is more sparse with two Gigabit ports, only one a/b port, and no USB port.
When selecting another Fritzbox for fiber, you have to pay attention to the connection type: The Fritzbox 5491 is intended for GPON connections, while the identically constructed Fritzbox 5490 is for AON. Both models have 11ac WLAN with 1300 (5 GHz) and 450 Mbps (2.4 GHz), as well as the complete telephony equipment with DECT base station, ISDN connection and two analog connections. There is also a 4-port switch with Gigabit LAN and two USB 3.0 sockets.
However, you can hardly find both models in online stores, but usually get them for rent from the online provider with an appropriate rate.
Fritzbox WLAN router without modem
Even if you already have a suitable modem for online access, you can use a Fritzbox.The WLAN models serve as a home network router that connects the local network via WLAN and LAN switch. The Fritzbox brings the home network devices to the Internet by connecting the existing DSL, cable or fiber optic modem to its WAN port.
The top model for this field of application, the Fritzbox 4060, is especially worthwhile as a WLAN router behind a fiber optic modem: It has a 2.5 gigabit WAN port for this purpose. It has a unique selling point in WLAN: It is the only Fritzbox with tri-band technology. It can therefore serve three different wireless networks - with four MIMO streams and 80 MHz channel bandwidth, it achieves 2400 Mbps each over the lower and upper channels of the 5 GHz frequency, plus 1200 Mbps over 2.4 GHz. It also has three Gigabit ports and a USB 3.0 port, as well as a DECT base station.
The telephone function is missing from AVM's cheaper WLAN routers: the Fritzbox 4040 uses the 11ac WLAN with 866 Mbps as well as WLAN-N with up to 400 Mbps. The LAN and USB ports offer Gigabit and USB 3.0 speeds, respectively. The second USB port runs with USB 2.0.
The Fritzbox 4020, on the other hand, works with Fast Ethernet and USB 2.0. It also uses the older 11n standard for WLAN, which is up to 450 MBit/s over 2.4 GHz.
Fritzbox upgrade: Transferring settings
If you buy a new Fritzbox, you don't necessarily have to completely reconfigure it. You can transfer data and settings from the old Fritzbox to the new one. If you replace a Fritzbox with a new copy of the same model, you can thus transfer all the settings stored on the device. This includes Internet access data, port shares, users, settings for DHCP, WLAN, but also telephone data, phone books, call lists and much more. If you replace the old box with a newer model, only a basic transfer of settings is possible. This affects, for example, the functions that both devices support.
Create a backup: In the interface of all current Fritzboxes, the configuration can be saved under "System -' Backup".
You should remember the password you enter here, because it is the only way to use the backup file later. Alternatively, you can create a backup completely automatically using the push service of the same name. Then the settings are automatically sent to the e-mail address you have stored when loading the factory settings or when updating the firmware.
Import backup: If you want to load the settings on a Fritzbox, click the same place in the user interface as for the backup, except that you now click the "Restore" tab at the top. In the corresponding field, now select the file that you created and saved in the first step. Then enter the password. Here you also have the option to perform a complete or partial restore (with corresponding selection options). After the file has been loaded and the settings restored, the Fritzbox will reboot. (PC-Welt)