Which is the Best VPN Service for Privacy, Download Speed, and More? We Review the Top VPNs Now!
Loss of privacy online has become a big issue. When you start seeing ads on your Twitter feed for a new item you just purchased at the store, it can be a little bit creepy. Security when connecting to public Wi-Fi’s has also become a concern for many.
When you connect without any extra security between you and the internet, the sites you visit know your IP address and the city where you live. It’s also fairly easy for hackers to get into an unsecured Wi-Fi and grab passwords or other logins you use while connected.
Privacy and security are the two main reasons that virtual private networks (VPNs) have become popular for personal use. The top VPN services have responded with plans tailored to users looking for privacy, unrestricted access to sites, and the best VPN for torrenting.
In our AdvisoryHQ News review of the best VPN services, we’re going to take a look at NordVPN vs ExpressVPN vs IPVanish vs PureVPN. Which one is the most reliable? Do they all work with sites like Netflix? Is there a free VPN for torrenting?
We’ll dig into each of these top VPN services to look at things like speed, the number of available servers, reliability, and how they rank with users. We’ll also do a price comparison of NordVPN vs IPVanish vs PureVPN vs ExpressVPN so you can see which is the best value.
If you’ve been considering getting a VPN for more privacy on your computer and mobile devices, you’ll want to check out this comparison review to see which is the best VPN service for your unique needs.
Comparison Review List
The list below is sorted alphabetically (click any of the names below to go directly to the detailed review section):
High Level Comparison Table
|Allowed Device Connections||3||10||6||5|
|Free Trial||No||Yes, but only for iOS app||Yes||No|
|Number of Servers||2000+||1000+||4800+||2000+|
|Price||$8.32 – $12.95 per month||$6.49 – $10.00 per month||$6.99 – $11.95 per month||$2.49 – $10.95 per month|
|VPN Comparison US Speed Average||62 Mbps||34.71 Mbps||34.7 Mbps||18.96 Mbps|
Table: The above list is sorted alphabetically
AdvisoryHQ Review | What is a Virtual Private Network (VPN)?
You can picture a VPN as a secure and private tunnel that stands between you and the internet. It encrypts the data transmitted back and forth to keep it from being read by others.
A VPN also masks your IP address, since you’re connecting through one of the top VPN servers. So a site reads that server IP address, and not the one at your home (or other location.)
Why do people use VPNs?
There are a number of reasons that people seek out one of the top VPN services to give them a private connection to the internet:
- So people can’t see their location based upon their IP address
- To avoid censorship or being surveilled online
- So, they can use public Wi-Fi connections without worrying about hackers
- To encrypt data transmissions
- So they can torrent or use peer-to-peer file sharing anonymously
- To access sites that may be blocked in some countries
- Faster internet speeds (only offered by some VPNs)
How to Choose the Best VPN for Torrenting and Reliability
If you download large files via the BitTorrent platform, then a key thing you’ll want to consider when doing a VPN comparison of NordVPN vs IPVanish vs PureVPN vs ExpressVPN is the download speed.
Some VPN providers have faster download speeds than others. For example, in a matchup of PureVPN vs NordVPN there’s a difference of about 15.74 Mbps in speed, with NordVPN coming out ahead.
You’ll also want to check reviews for top VPN services, to see how reliable the servers are. Are they disconnecting often? Are servers down all the time?
One more thing to check is whether the VPN providers offer servers specifically for peer-to-peer file sharing. Those that do are often among the best VPNs for torrenting.
Looking for a free VPN for torrenting? We’ve got more on that near the end of the article.
Now, let’s get into the details on each of these top VPN services. We’ll go through each of these four companies, comparing PureVPN vs NordVPN vs ExpressVPN vs IPVanish.
The company behind ExpressVPN is based in the British Virgin Islands and has been in business since 2009. In 2018, ExpressVPN service was named an Editors’ Choice by TechRadar.
The company advertises instant set up and a fast and ultra-secure connection. They also have 24/7 customer service available through their website live chat.
When doing a VPN comparison of PureVPN vs ExpressVPN vs NordVPN vs IPVanish, there are some factors that are unique to ExpressVPN.
Things That Set ExpressVPN Apart:
- The fastest 3rd party tested download speeds (US)
- The ability to do VPN split tunneling (connecting just some devices to VPN)
- Choose between OpenVPN and other protocols
- They run a private, encrypted DNS on every server
- The most expensive of the 4 VPNs
ExpressVPN Pros & Cons
In reviewing NordVPN vs ExpressVPN vs PureVPN vs IPVanish, we looked over multiple user reviews online to get a feel for the pros and cons of each best VPN service.
Overall, this top VPN gets excellent marks from ratings and review sites, with an 8.9 out of 10 at TrustPilot and 5 out of 5 at Capterra.
ExpressVPN User Pros:
- Very reliable
- Works better in China than other VPNs
- Excellent customer service
- Fast speeds
ExpressVPN User Cons:
- Doesn’t work well with Netflix
- Inconsistent service
- A hassle to set up with outgoing email
There is no free trial with ExpressVPN, but they do have a 30-day money-back guarantee. When comparing pricing for NordVPN vs IPVanish vs PureVPN vs ExpressVPN, this one is the most expensive and has the least number of device connections, with just 3 allowed.
- $12.95 per month, billed monthly
- $9.99 per month, billed every 6 months ($59.95 per 6 months)
- $8.32 per month, billed every 12 months ($99.95 per 12 months)
If you like control of a variety of settings, then ExpressVPN is one of the top VPN services for you. They offer several advanced settings such as choosing the type of VPN protocol used in your connection.
They also offer a handy VPN Leak Test on their site so you can make sure the VPN is working and that your IP is masked.
Their customer service and reliability all get high marks, but you may need to turn it off when watching Netflix. The service is known for trying to block VPNs, and some users say it doesn’t work with the service.
If you want the best VPN for torrenting and speed, this is it! With an average tested download speed of 62 megabits per second, it leaves the competition in the dust.
IPVanish is a VPN that was released in 2012 by US-based Highwinds Network Group and Mudhook Media, Inc. IPVanish was named Best VPN in 2017 at the T3 Awards.
This VPN provider advertises private connections, fast speeds, and freedom online. They promise to make any internet connection secure, even if you’re on a free public Wi-Fi.
Looking at PureVPN vs IPVanish vs NordVPN vs ExpressVPN, here’s what makes IPVanish stand out from the others.
Things That Set IPVanish Apart:
- One of the lower priced VPN providers
- Over 40,000 shared IPs
- The highest number of device connections (10)
- Free privacy check page
- 24/7 customer support
IPVanish Pros & Cons
How do users feel about IPVanish vs ExpressVPN vs PureVPN vs NordVPN in VPN comparison reviews?
IPVanish gets even higher marks than ExpressVPN at TrustPilot, scoring an almost perfect 9.1 out of 10 from user ratings.
IPVanish User Pros:
- Easy to use
- Doesn’t slow down the internet connection
- Great security when browsing online
- Good customer support
IPVanish User Cons:
- Problems with dropped connections
- Difficulty with refunds
- Not compatible with watching BBC iPlayer
IPVanish does offer a free trial, but only when you sign up on their app for iPhone, iPod, or iPad. When comparing the money-back guarantees of PureVPN vs IPVanish vs NordVPN vs Express VPN, they have by far the shortest, at just 7 days, with everyone else at 30-31 days.
They have some of the lowest prices of any VPN service. When looking at PureVPN vs IPVanish, PureVPN is less for long-term subscription, but IPVanish is lowest on the month-to-month.
- $10.00 per month, billed monthly
- $8.99 per month, billed every 3 months ($26.99 per 3 months)
- $6.49 per month, billed every 12 months ($77.99 per 12 months)
If privacy is your main concern, then IPVanish gets high marks from multiple sites for their secure and private connections and anonymous torrenting.
It does have some serious drawbacks if you live in or travel to certain countries, however. The company states that their VPN is currently reported to be blocked in:
- Saudi Arabia
When it comes to the best VPN for torrenting, IPVanish gets pretty good reviews from customers for their speed. So when choosing between PureVPN vs IPVanish vs NordVPN vs ExpressVPN, it looks like they’re another great option for speed in addition to ExpressVPN.
IPVanish comes in #1 for value with the combination of their low price and allowing you to connect up to 10 devices for your subscription. That’s 4 more than the next closest service, NordVPN with 6 connections.
Popular Article: ᐅ DealDash Review | Is it a Scam or One of The Best Penny Auctions?
This next best VPN service provider is based in Panama, a country without any mandatory data retention laws. NordVPN was released in 2012 and was named the Best VPN of 2017 by PCMag Awards.
They advertise global connectivity with secure and private internet access. They have servers on every continent with the exception of Antarctica.
Looking at the lineup of PureVPN vs NordVPN vs IPVanish vs ExpressVPN, there are a few things that make NordVPN unique.
Things That Set NordVPN Apart:
- More than double the servers of the other 4 VPNs
- They offer a free 3-day trial
- Multiple server types (double VPN servers, P2P servers, and more)
- Reportedly works with Netflix
- Military-grade encryption
NordVPN Pros & Cons
Not only did we look at NordVPN vs the other three VPNs in our review, since it’s often also compared to Private Internet Access (PIA) we also have a short NordVPN vs PIA comparison below.
On review websites, NordVPN does slightly worse when comparing NordVPN vs IPVanish and ExpressVPN, getting a 6.7 out of 10 at Trust Pilot and 4.5 out of 5 at Capterra. Here’s what reviewers think.
NordVPN User Pros:
- Works great with Netflix
- Reliable connections
- Automated, yet flexible settings
- Great customer support
NordVPN User Cons:
- Slows down the internet connection
- All servers aren’t always working
- Issues with blocked websites
NordVPN’s free 3-day trial, no credit card needed, is a big plus if you’d like to try the service with no strings attached. In our VPN comparison, they’re the only ones that make that offer.
Their pricing is less when you compare NordVPN vs Express VPN, but higher when comparing IPVanish or PureVPN vs NordVPN. NordVPN’s pricing is as follows:
- $11.95 per month, billed monthly
- $9.00 per month, billed every 6 months ($54.00 per 6 months)
- $6.99 per month, billed every 12 months ($83.88 per 12 months)
NordVPN vs PIA
One reason people compare Nord VPN vs PIA is that they both have a larger number of servers than other VPNs. NordVPN comes in at over 4800 and PIA has over 3765 servers.
NordVPN is in a much larger number of countries, 62, as compared to 33 countries for PIA.
Pricing is where PIA comes out ahead. Looking at NordVPN vs PIA pricing, PIA’s most expensive subscription for monthly service is $6.95/month, which is less than the $11.95/month for NordVPN.
For the largest choice of servers and server types, NordVPN is your best option. They have by far more active servers than the other best VPN services, and also offer 5 different server types.
When comparing PureVPN vs NordVPN vs ExpressVPN vs IPVanish, NordVPN’s Achilles heel is their speed. In the company’s FAQ it states that you can expect around a 30% speed drop when connected to the closest server.
So, for those looking for the best VPN for torrenting, you might want to choose one of the other top VPN services.
If a private connection that doesn’t interfere with Netflix viewing is important to you, then NordVPN is one of the few currently not blocked by the service.
PureVPN is operated out of Hong Kong by GZ systems. The service was initially released back in 2006. It was chosen as an Editors’ Choice in 2018 by PCMag.com
The company advertises “crazy-fast” speeds, a family of over 3 million users in six continents, and excellent cybersecurity.
Looking at PureVPN vs ExpressVPN vs NordVPN vs IPVanish, certain factors help PureVPN stand out among the competition.
Things That Set PureVPN Apart:
- Lowest price for a long-term plan
- Ozone-enabled servers (with anti-virus, ad-blocker, and more)
- Dedicated P2P servers for file sharing
- Self-engineered VPN service
- All security protocols available on every server
PureVPN Pros & Cons
This service gets pretty nice ratings when looking at PureVPN vs ExpressVPN vs NordVPN vs IPVanish. It scored a high 9.5 out of 10 at Trust Pilot and 4.5 out of 5 at Capterra.
PureVPN User Pros:
- Simple and effective
- Easy to use
- Excellent choice of IP locations
PureVPN User Cons:
- Variable connection
- Difficulty canceling
- Hard to set up on the router
You won’t get a free trial with PureVPN, but they do offer a 3-day trial for a non-refundable $2.50, so it’s cheap to try.
At plans more than 1 month, comparing PureVPN vs NordVPN vs ExpressVPN vs IPVanish, PureVPN is more affordable.
- $10.95 per month, billed monthly
- $4.15 per month, billed every 12 months ($49.80 per 12 months)
- $2.49 per month, billed every 24 months ($59.76 per 24 months)
If a low price is your biggest selling point, then PureVPN on a 1 year or 2-year plan gives you rock bottom prices for a service that gets high ratings from users.
But this may not be the best VPN for torrenting, because even though they advertise fast speeds, in independent speed tests they come in lower than the other three competitors for US servers.
They give you one more day than the two nearest competitors on your money-back guarantee, at 31 days.
When it comes to server numbers, comparing PureVPN vs IPVanish, PureVPN has about double the servers. PureVPN vs NordVPN, shows NordVPN wins out. Looking at servers for PureVPN vs ExpressVPN, they have about the same, 2000+.
For an affordable price and reliable service that gets high ratings, PureVNP is a great option.
Are there Free VPNs for Torrenting?
You can find a few free VPNs for torrenting online, just be aware that if you’re not paying for the service, then support and reliability might be sketchy. You may also run into a free VPN having limits on the amount of data transferred.
But if you absolutely don’t want to pay for a subscription and would rather go with a free VPN for torrenting or secure online browsing, here are a few you can try:
- Hotspot Shield
AdvisoryHQ VPN Review Conclusion | NordVPN vs IPVanish vs PureVPN vs ExpressVPN
Each of these top competitors on the market represents one of the best VPN services out there. While all garner awards and reviews, each has their own set of pluses and minuses.
All these services offer private and secure internet browsing through a virtual private network that allows you to connect privately to one of their multiple servers around the world. They all also market having a “no logs” policy and complete privacy connecting online.
Where they differ is pricing, how many devices you can connect, speed, and which countries they can connect in without being blocked.
For example, if you travel to China often and want to connect using a VPN, IPVanish probably isn’t going to work for you. If you’re looking for the most reliable Netflix connection, then NordVPN is your best option.
If speed’s your main concern, then ExpressVPN tests the fastest in the US. Looking for the cheapest? Then either IPVanish or PureVPN can give you the best deal for your money.
Looking at PureVPN vs NordVPN vs Express VPN vs IPVanish, all get great overall reviews and are good choices if you’re looking for a VPN. Just keep in mind what’s most important to you and match that with the VPN’s strengths
AdvisoryHQ (AHQ) Disclaimer:
Reasonable efforts have been made by AdvisoryHQ to present accurate information, however all info is presented without warranty. Review AdvisoryHQ’s Terms for details. Also review each firm’s site for the most updated data, rates and info.
Note: Firms and products, including the one(s) reviewed above, may be AdvisoryHQ's affiliates. Click to view AdvisoryHQ's advertiser disclosures.