A Gamers Ultimate Guide to NAT Type – for Xbox, PC, PS4, PS5, Switch

As a gamer, you have almost certainly came across the term ‘NAT Type‘. You also very likely that your NAT type can impact your online gaming experience greatly. Whether you are gaming on a console such as an Xbox One, Xbox Series X, Xbox Series S, PS4, PS5, Nintendo Switch, or on a computer (PC), you see descriptions such as Open NAT Type, Moderate NAT Type, and Strict NAT Type.

Sony makes NAT Type even more confusing on PlayStation Network by using NAT Type 1, NAT Type 2, and NAT Type 3. Contrary to popular belief NAT Types 1, 2, and 3 do not necessarily correspond to NAT Types Open, Moderate, and Strict. For example you can have a NAT Type 2 and still have an Open NAT Type.

Nintendo also makes understanding NAT more complicated by using its own terminology to refer to NAT type on the Nintendo switch. Nintendo uses letters A though F to describe NAT type on the Switch. A is the most open (best) and F is the most restrictive (worst).

NAT Type is a complicated yet highly important topic that is widely discussed in the gaming community. To help you better understand NAT type and to guide you through all of the misinformation available on the web, we have put together the ultimate guide to NAT Type. This article will dig very deeply into the subject, feel free to use the table of contents to skip to the section you are looking for.

Use Table of Contents to Find the TL;DR Answer

What is NAT

NAT is an acronym for network address translation. NAT is used as a way to map private (internal) IP addresses to public (WAN) IP addresses before routing data packets between them. Any network that allows multiple devices to share a single public IP address uses NAT. NAT is used by virtually everyone using the internet. Whether you are setting up a small home network with 5 devices, or a network for a fortune 500 company with thousands of devices, you are more than likely using NAT on your network.

WiFi Router NAT

Why Do We Use NAT

We use NAT to conserve the number of public IP addresses needed to connect our devices to the internet.

When the internet first started nobody used NAT. There were relatively few internet connected devices, and those that did connect only used an IP address when connected. With Dial Up internet it was standard procedure to connect to the internet, do your web browsing / email, and then disconnect. The internet protocol version 4 was created in 1981.

IPv4 uses a 32-bit address space which provides 4,294,967,296 (2^32) unique addresses. At the time this number was thought to be unthinkably large. Nobody thought we would ever use even a small fraction of all of these addresses.

As more and more devices came online and broadband connections became commonplace, we quickly started using up more and more of these IP addresses.  Presently the number of devices connected to the internet far exceeds the 4,294,967,296 available public IPv4 addresses that are available. How is this possible when each device needs a unique IP address? Network address translation (NAT) is the reason.

NAT allows many devices to share a public IP address. Depending on the network configuration, there can be up to thousands of devices all sharing a single public IP address. This is not uncommon on large enterprise networks. On a typical home network, a single public IP address provided by a cable, DSL, or fiber based internet service provider (ISP), is shared with a all internet connected devices in the home. This is done via NAT. A home network router either as a standalone device, or bundled into a modem / router gateway performs NAT.

Cable Modem Router NAT

How Does NAT Work on a Home Network

NAT is a function performed by your home network router. NAT works by assigning all of your connected devices a private IP address. The following IP address ranges have been defined by RFC 1918 as private IP addresses. These IP addresses are reserved (by convention only) by the Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA) to not be publicly routable.

Many home routers use 192.168.0.x, 192.168.1.x, or 10.0.0.x as their default subnet. This is not the case for all routers and any private IP address can be used. Many home routers and all business grade routers allow you to change the IP address range used for your internal network.

RFC 1918 nameIP address rangeNumber of IP addressesLargest (subnet mask)
24-bit block10.0.0.0 – 10.255.255.2551677721610.0.0.0/8 (255.0.0.0)
20-bit block172.16.0.0 – 172.31.255.2551048576172.16.0.0/12 (255.240.0.0)
16-bit block192.168.0.0 – 192.168.255.25565536192.168.0.0/16 (255.255.0.0)

Your router also receives a public IP address from your internet service provider. This is an IP address that is not part of the RFC 1918 range and is routable worldwide.

Your router sends and receives data to and from the internet on its public (WAN) IP address, and sends and receives data to and from devices on your internal (local) network using private IP addresses. Your router uses NAT to facilitate the communication between public and private IP addresses.

An Easier Way to Understand NAT

A good way to better understand NAT is to compare it to mailing address. Your street address, city, state, and country are analogous to your public IP address. It can be used worldwide to identify your location, and to receive mail from around the world.

Your apartment number would be analogous to your private IP address. When your local postal worker delivers the mail coming to your street address, they look at the apartment number or name on the letter, and put it in the corresponding mail box. The postal worker is doing a job analogous to NAT. They are taking mails sent to a publicly known address and routing it to a location only understood locally.

You could not send a letter to the next town over by including only a PO box number. For example if you just wrote box number 35 on a letter and took it to the post office, they would have no idea where to send the letter. There is a box 35 at every post office. Box 35 is only meaningful to the staff at the local post office.

NAT Post Office

In order to send the letter to another post office. we need to include a public address along with the box number. By including the street address, city, and state, along with the box number 35, postal workers (analogous to routers located on the internet) know how to get the letter to its destination. When it reaches the destination post office identified by the street address, city, and state (analogous to it public IP address), postal workers see the box number 35 (analogous to its private IP address) know what box that is, and put the mail in the box.

Your router uses NAT to communicate with the internet via its public IP address (analogous to the street address, city, and state on a letter) and assign private IP address (analogous to PO box numbers) to all connected devices. The result is a network of multiple devices that can all send and receive data using only a single public (WAN) IP address.

This is a gross simplification of how your router uses NAT to send and receive data from the internet while connecting all of your devices via a single public IP address.

Varieties of NAT Used in Networking

NAT comes in 3 commonly used configurations, static NAT, dynamic NAT, and PAT. These are terms used in the networking world and different from the terms used in the gaming industry.

  1. Static NAT

Static NAT is a setup where a single local IP address is converted to a single public IP address. Static NAT always translates between the same public. Static NAT is not used on home networks and is used relatively uncommonly on larger corporate networks.

2. Dynamic NAT

Dynamic NAT works similarly to static NAT except, instead of choosing the same public IP address every time, it rotates through a pool of public IP addresses. Dynamic NAT is not used on home networks and is used more commonly on larger corporate networks.

3. PAT

PAT stands for port address translation. This is the type of NAT that people are generally referring to when talking about NAT. PAT a type of dynamic NAT. Where PAT differs is that it maps multiple private (LAN) IP addresses to a single public (WAN) IP address. PAT is used extensively on networks of all sizes, ranging from small home networks, to the largest of enterprise networks. When the term NAT is used in the context of gaming, it really refers to PAT. Think of it as PAT = NAT and NAT = PAT. 99% of the time when people are talking about NAT they are talking about PAT.

Port Address Translation

Is NAT Good or Bad

NAT is a necessary evil in many respects, and a great thing in other respects. NAT by default provides a basic amount of security and privacy. This is because of how NAT routes data between public and private IP addresses. NAT by nature will not allow anything on the public IP side to initiate a conversation with a device connected on the private side. The router manages the data and makes sure everything goes to the right place.

This offers a baseline of protection by default and by doing nothing. For the average consumer NAT is a layer of protection that works without any action by the user. This makes NAT great for home network security, making it more difficult for unwanted data to get by. NAT is not however foolproof, and is not a replacement for other security best practices. NAT also increases your privacy somewhat by not allowing websites to see your device directly but rather to see your router. This is the upside of using NAT.

The negative side effect of NAT is for devices that need to communicate directly with the internet. NAT by nature will not allow anything on the public IP side to initiate a conversation with a device connected on the private side. This is a problem if you need a connection on the outside to be able to initiate a connection on the inside.

Common examples would include webservers hosting websites, email servers, FTP servers, and DNS servers. These devices generally should be set up using a public IP address without using NAT. This means that all ports on these devices are directly exposed to the internet and outside connections can freely initiate connections with the server by requesting data to be be sent. As a general rule, servers hosting connections coming from outside should have their own static public IP address. A static IP address is simply an IP address that does not change.

Generally we do not host servers on our home networks, therefore NAT is generally not an issue at all. Web browsing, social media, streaming Netflix, and most online activities do not see any negative impact from NAT. In fact all of thee activities benefit from the added layer of security provided by NAT. Gaming is an exception to the rule.

NAT Type

How Does NAT Affect Gaming

Many games use peer to peer (P2P) technology. The nature of P2P technology means that your device i.e. Xbox, PlayStation, PC, Switch, etc. needs to act as both a server and a client. Your device also needs to accept connections initiated by other gamers that you are playing with / against. These are connections coming from outside of your network, NAT by default wants to drop these packets.

This is great for security, but a problem when using P2P applications such as many online games. Call of Duty is an example of a popular game that uses P2P technology extensively. NAT by design breaks P2P connections. NAT does not conform to the end to end principle that P2P relies on for reliable communication.

Game developers and engineers use a variety of of techniques to help with NAT traversal. This is why games using P2P technology are able to work at all on networks using NAT. Engineers work hard on designing games to navigate though NAT as best as possible. The problem is that the nature of NAT will never allow for full end to end communication as P2P technology expects.

What Does NAT Type Mean For Gaming

As you can probably tell by the information above, NAT is a complicated subject. NAT is also a very important subject in reference to gaming because it impacts almost every part of your online gaming experience. “NAT type” is a term widely used within the gaming world. NAT type is an attempt by manufacturers and game developers to indicate how effectively your gaming system (Xbox One, Xbox Series X / S. PS5, PS4, PC, etc.) is able to communicate with outside connections.

NAT type is displayed within the settings menu of most gaming systems. NAT type is also displayed in many games that rely on P2P technology. A point of confusion for many gamers is when the NAT type shown in the settings menu does not match the NAT type shown in the game. This happens because they test in a different way and use different ports for communication. The NAT type you see displayed in the game menu is what matters most.

Game developers and console manufacturers do not all use the same definition of NAT type. They also do not always use the same terminology. The most commonly used terms to describe NAT types are open, moderate, and strict. Different platforms will set different thresholds of what qualifies as open, moderate, and strict. Most often these are the terms used in the gaming industry to describe NAT type.

Sony on the other hand, uses the terms NAT type 1, NAT type 2, and NAT type 3. Despite what most people believe and what many websites will tell you, NAT type 1 is not the same as open NAT, NAT type 2 is not the same as moderate NAT, and NAT type 3 is not the same as strict NAT.

NAT Type Gaming

What Is Open NAT Type on Xbox Series X, Series S, and Xbox One

An open NAT type on Microsoft Xbox consoles means that all necessary communication is flowing smoothly. If you are getting an open NAT type on Xbox Series X, Xbox Series S, or Xbox One, you will have the best gaming experience, and all features will work properly. You will most often get selected as the host in P2P multiplayer matches. This is because your Xbox is able to easily initiate connections to other players and to easily get a response back. Open NAT means that your Xbox can communicate optimally on all required ports. An open NAT type is ideal for optimal performance. There are a number of reasons you may be getting an open NAT type on Xbox.

1. Your Xbox Series X / S or Xbox One has a public IP address. This is unlikely given that most residential internet service providers only provide a single public IP address. This single public IP is likely being used by your router. If for some reason you are not using a router and your Xbox is connected directly to your internet service provider’s modem (assuming it is not a modem / router combo unit) your Xbox will automatically get an open NAT type. This is because these is no NAT taking place at all.

This is also possible if you pay your ISP an additional fee for an extra public IP address and assign one public IP to your Xbox and one public IP to your router. If you are a hardcore gamer willing to spend a few dollars per month to make 100% sure you always have an open NAT on your Xbox, this is a valid option.

2. Your router is using universal plug and play (UPnP) to automatically forward any needed communications directly to your Xbox. This is the most likely scenario if you are getting an open NAT type and did nothing special to make it happen. Many routers by default will have UPnP enabled on them, This is especially likely on inexpensive consumer grade routers or routers provided by your internet service provider (ISP). UPnP is considered by most security experts to be a potential security risk. People highly concerned with security should turn UPnP off. For most people however, the convenience of UPnP likely outweighs any potential security concerns.

3. You have configured port forwarding from within your router to forward the ports required for your Xbox to properly communicate. This is not something that would take place unless you did it or someone did it for you. This is the most secure way to get an open NAT on Xbox but also the most technical to set up.

4. You have used the DMZ function on your router and placed your Xbox in the DMZ. The demilitarized Zone (DMZ) function on most consumer routers will automatically forward any and all ports to the IP address of the device placed within the DMZ. If you place your Xbox within the DMZ of your router, your NAT type will be open, assuming there are not any other issues.

What Is Moderate NAT Type on Xbox Series X, Series S, and Xbox One

A moderate NAT type on Xbox consoles means that most critical communication is flowing smoothly. If you are getting an moderate NAT type on Xbox Series X, Xbox Series S, or Xbox One, you will generally not run into issues. It is possible that some features will not work properly in certain games. You will most often not get selected as the host in P2P multiplayer matches. Moderate NAT will be perfectly fine for most casual gamers. Serious gamers who want to always be the host will want to change their NAT type to open. The most common situation where you will get a moderate NAT type on Xbox is as follows.

You are connected to a router using NAT in the most common way. Your ISP is providing a public IP address that your router is sharing via NAT. Your Xbox is receiving a private IP address from your router, and UPnP is not enabled. If UPnP is disabled on your router, you do not set up port forwarding, you do not put your Xbox in the DMZ of your router, your NAT type will generally be moderate.

How to Change NAT Type From Moderate to Open on Xbox

  1. Set up port forwarding. This is the most secure way of changing your NAT type to open. It is also the most most technical. Learn how to set up port forwarding on Xbox Series X and Xbox Series S.
  2. Enable UPnP on your router. This is the least technical way to get an open NAT on Xbox Series X, Xbox Series S, and Xbox One.
  3. Put your Xbox in the demilitilarized zone (DMZ) of your router. This will forward all ports to your Xbox and get you an open NAT type.

If your NAT type is strict the methods listed above will likely not work for you. You will need to already have a moderate NAT type for the methods listed above to change your NAT type to open on your Xbox.

What is Strict NAT Type on Xbox Series X, Series S, and Xbox One

A strict NAT type on Xbox means that NAT is preventing a substantial amount of necessary communication from occurring. If you are getting a strict NAT type on Xbox Series X, Xbox Series S, or Xbox One, you will likely have issues with online multiplayer gameplay, and many features will not work properly including voice chat. You will never get selected as the host in P2P multiplayer matches because the other players can’t communicate effectively with you.

Strict NAT type means that your Xbox is having trouble communicating on one or more required ports. Open NAT type is ideal for optimal performance. There are a number of issues that may be causing a strict NAT type on Xbox. Some causes are easier to resolve than others.

1. Firewall rules are configured on your router that are blocking ports required by your Xbox. This is becoming less and less common with newer routers. Most consumer grade routers are now configured by default to be “gaming friendly”.

This issue is more common if connecting your Xbox to a commercial grade router or unified threat management (UTM) appliance. These are security focused appliances that are designed to protect sensitive data and critical infrastructure on enterprise networks. You are not likely using one of these products on your home network. If you are, you likely already know all about NAT because you are a networking professional.

Fortunately if you are using a high end commercial grade router, you have lots of configuration options, will able to forward the needed ports, and will be able to poke the necessary holes on the firewall with granular control.

2. The most common cause of a strict NAT type is due to double NAT. Xbox is sometimes able to detect double NAT and may display a double NAT detected message. Double NAT will generally result in an automatic strict NAT type. Other times a double NAT message may not be display and you will only see your NAT type as strict.

How to Change NAT Type on Xbox Series X, Xbox Series S, and Xbox One

If your router’s firewall is blocking the necessary connections, poke the required holes in the firewall to change your NAT type. Ideally only open up as much as required. The more holes in a firewall the less secure your network.

Double NAT occurs when your public IP address gets converted into a private IP address by a router via NAT, then a second router converts the private IP address into a different private IP address. Double NAT occurs either because there are two routers on your network connected together, or because your internet service provider use CGNAT. Double NAT is bad for gaming on Xbox Live.

The most common reason for a double NAT environment is having more than one router on your home network. You may or may not even realize that you have two routers on your network. Very often the modem provided by your internet provider is a modem / router combo unit. If you do not disable the router functionality of a modem / router combo unit and connect your own router you will have double NAT. You can fix this in several ways.

  1. Put your modem / router combo unit into bridge mode
  2. Replace your modem router combo unit with a straight modem.
  3. Eliminate your own router using only the modem / router combo unit.

Learn More About Why Two Routers Should Not Be Used on the Same Home Network

The other common reason for double NAT is because your ISP uses carrier grade NAT (CGNAT). CGNAT is most commonly used by 4G / 5G cellular based internet services and by satellite internet services including Starlink. With CGNAT your router does not get a public IP address assigned to it directly. Instead your router gets a private IP address that is assigned by your ISP. This private IP address is sharing a public IP address used by hundreds of other users in many cases.

Your router then takes the private IP provided by your ISP and creates it internal network using NAT. This results in double NAT. Double NAT is almost a guarantee of a strict NAT type. If you are connecting using a mobile hotspot, you are going to have double NAT issues. CGNAT does not allow for the usual techniques of changing your NAT type. Since you have no control over the router performing NAT on your ISP’s side, port forwarding and UPnP are not possible to configure.

A VPN service is the best way to change your NAT type if you must use an internet service provider (ISP) that uses CGNAT. Given the choice, if your internet service provider uses CGNAT, look for a different provider. Generally cable, DSL, and fiber based internet service providers do not use CGNAT. CGNAT is typically most common with cellular and satellite ISPs.

Double NAT Xbox

NAT Type on PC Games

NAT type is essentially the same for PC as it is for Xbox. The information listed for Xbox applies to PC gaming as well. This is especially true because many PC games use Microsoft services. Gaming on PC does however have a few subtle differences. Because PCs are not dedicated gaming devices, they have a few extra complications relating to NAT type.

  1. Windows Firewall / firewall software. A software firewall can block ports required by games in the same manor as a router firewall. This is less common of an issue because usually games are designed to punch the necessary holes in the Windows Firewall during installation. Some 3rd party firewall software may require rule changes to allow for an open NAT type. This is especially true if the firewall software was installed after the game was already installed.
  2. Security is paramount. PCs are much more likely to contain sensitive / private information than game consoles. The versatility of a PC means that you are much more likely to use it for other things besides gaming. A gaming computer is great for video editing, graphic design, CAD / 3D modeling, as well as of course, gaming! Windows 10 and Windows 11, are full desktop operating systems. This means that they are much more susceptible to malware and hijackings than game consoles. For this reason you may wish to stay with a moderate NAT on you gaming PC. Forwarding ports on your router to a PC is much more dangerous than forwarding ports to an Xbox, PlayStation, or Switch console.
PC Gaming NAT Type

What is NAT Type 1 on PS5 and PS4

NAT type 1 on PS5 and on PS4 means that your console has a public IP address. This means an IP address outside the range of the RFC 1918 range as listed below.

RFC 1918 nameIP address rangeNumber of IP addressesLargest (subnet mask)
24-bit block10.0.0.0 – 10.255.255.2551677721610.0.0.0/8 (255.0.0.0)
20-bit block172.16.0.0 – 172.31.255.2551048576172.16.0.0/12 (255.240.0.0)
16-bit block192.168.0.0 – 192.168.255.25565536192.168.0.0/16 (255.255.0.0)

A public IP address assigned to your console is they only thing that will give you a NAT type 1 on PS4 or PS5. None of the other commonly stated methods including DMZ, port forwarding, UPnP, or even using a VPN will give you a NAT type 1.

NAT type 1 is when your Sony PlayStation is connected directly to the internet with a public IP address and there is no NAT taking place whatsoever. This is the only time you will ever see NAT type 1 in the settings menu. If your PS4 or PS5 sees a private IP address you will not get NAT type 1, ever.

As mentioned before NAT type 1 is not the same as open NAT in games. You absolutely do not need a NAT type 1 on PlayStation to get an open NAT in games. Getting an open NAT in games is what matters, that is what dictates you gaming experience.

Getting a NAT type 1 in the PS4 or PS5 settings menu is nothing more than a vanity metric. To the uneducated gamer NAT type 1 is thought to be the wholly grail. Many gamers try multiple different methods seeking to get a NAT type 1 on their PlayStation consoles. What they do not realize is that a NAT type 1 on PS4 / PS5 has no benefits over a NAT type 2, as long as they are getting open NAT within the games they play. They also do not understand what a NAT type 1 means.

What is NAT Type 2 on PS5 and PS4

NAT type 2 on PS5 or PS4 means that your console is properly connected behind a router that is preforming NAT and traffic is flowing smoothly. NAT Type 2 is the goal when setting up a PlayStation.

NAT Type 2 means the following is true:

  • Your PlayStation is behind a router performing NAT.
  • Your router is aware of your PS4 or PS5 and is routing packets on specific ports properly to your PlayStation.
  • Your PlayStation is able to properly connect to other players.
  • You will have no issues being the host of multiplayer lobbies in most games.
  • Video, voice, and chat features will work properly and without limitations.
  • You can get an Open NAT in games.

It is very common to have a NAT type 2 and get Open NAT type in games. This is optimal for most gamers. It is also possible that with a NAT type 2 you could be getting a moderate or even strict NAT type in games. This is because games use specific ports and depending on how your router is configured, the ports may or may not be blocked.

How to Get Open NAT in games on PS5 and PS4 with a NAT Type 2

There are several ways to change your NAT type to open in games while having a NAT type 2 on your PlayStation console.

  1. Set up port forwarding on your router. This is the most secure way of changing your NAT type in games to open. It is also the most technical to configure. Learn how to set up port forwarding on PS4, learn how to set up port forwarding on PS5.
  2. Enable UPnP from the settings dashboard of your router. This is generally the least technical way to change your NAT type to open on a Sony PS4 or Sony PS5.
  3. Put your PlayStation 4 / 5 in the demilitilarized zone (DMZ) of your router. This will forward all ports to your console and get you an open NAT type.

Remember this will open your NAT type in games while keeping you a NAT type 2 in the PS4 / PS5 settings menu. This is what you want to do. This will not give you a NAT type 1, and that is perfectly fine. There is no benefit to having a NAT type 1, as long as you are getting an open NAT in the games you play.

What is NAT Type 3 on PS5 and PS4

NAT type 3 on PS5 and PS4 means that you are connected behind 1 or more routers, and your console is having difficulty communicating with PlayStation Network (PSN) on the required ports. This could be caused by number of factors. If you are behind a single router these are the most likely causes.

  1. Firewall rules on your router are blocking the communication requests.
  2. UPnP is disabled on your router and you have not set up port forwarding.
  3. Multiple PlayStation consoles are connected to the same router and they are competing for ports.
  4. You made a mistake when setting up port forwarding.
  5. Your internet service provider (ISP) uses carrier grade NAT (CGNAT).

These are the most likely causes of a NAT type 3 on PS5 and PS4 if you are only connected behind a single router.

Far more likely the reason you are getting a NAT type 3 is because you are behind multiple routers, all performing NAT. This results in a configuration know as double NAT. You many be connected behind multiple routers and not even realize it. This is extremely common.

How to Change Your NAT Type From Type 3 to Type 2 on PS5 and PS4

If you have determined that you only have a single router. You should start by enabling UPnP on your router. Then restart your router and your PS5 or PS4. This will often change your NAT type on PS5 or PS4 to a NAT type 2.

Another thing you can try is setting up port forwarding on your router. First you will need to assign your console a static IP address. Then you will need to set up port forwarding. These two methods should both be able to change your NAT type on PS5 or PS4 from NAT type 3 to NAT type 2. If you are still getting a NAT type 3 after enabling UPnP or setting up port forwarding, you more than likely have a second router on your network and don’t realize it, or your ISP is using CGNAT.

Very often the modem rented from your internet provider is a modem / router combo unit. If you do not disable the router functionality of a modem / router combo unit and connect your own router, you will have 2 routers on your network. 2 routers means double NAT. Double NAT almost always means NAT type 3 and strict NAT in all games.

Double NAT occurs when your public IP address gets converted into a private IP address by a router via NAT, then a second router converts the private IP address into a different private IP address. Double NAT occurs either because there are two routers on your network connected together, or because your internet service provider use CGNAT. Double NAT is very bad for gaming on PS4 and PS5.

The most common reason for a double NAT environment is having more than one router on your home network. Eliminate one of your routers or put your modem / router combo into bridge mode. Potential ways to resolve issues related to double NAT include.

  1. Put your modem / router combo unit into bridge mode.
  2. Replace your modem router combo unit with a straight modem.
  3. Eliminate your own router using only the modem / router combo unit.
  4. Use a VPN service such as ExpressVPN or NordVPN.

The other common reason for double NAT is because your ISP uses carrier grade NAT (CGNAT). CGNAT is most commonly used by 4G / 5G cellular based internet services and by satellite internet services including Starlink. With CGNAT your router does not get a public IP address assigned to it directly. Instead your router gets a private IP address that is assigned by your ISP. This private IP address is sharing a public IP address used by hundreds of other users in many cases.

Your router then takes the private IP provided by your ISP and creates it internal network using NAT. This results in double NAT. Double NAT is almost always a guarantee of getting a NAT type 3 on PS5 or PS4. If you are connecting using a mobile hotspot, you are going to have double NAT issues. CGNAT does not allow for the usual techniques of changing your NAT type. Since you have no control over the router performing NAT on your ISP’s side, port forwarding and UPnP are possible.

A VPN service is the best way to change your NAT type if you must use an internet service provider (ISP) that uses CGNAT. Given the choice, if your internet service provider uses CGNAT, look for a different provider. Generally cable, DSL, and fiber based internet service providers do not use CGNAT. CGNAT is typically most common with cellular and satellite ISPs. Cellular and satellite based internet are generally not recommended for gaming for other reasons anyways.

Once you eliminate the double NAT, your NAT type will most likely change from type 3 to type 2. If this does not happen make sure UPnP is enabled on your router. You will also want to reboot your router and PlayStation console before testing your NAT type again.

Once you get a NAT type 2 on PS5 or PS4 you are good to go.

5G Internet NAT Type

How to Get a NAT Type 1 on PS5 and PS4 ( NOT RECOMMENDED FOR MOST PEOPLE )

Through out this article we discussed why you do not need a NAT type 1 on PS5 or PS4 in order to have an open NAT in games. We discussed what NAT type 1 really means, (hint most people get it wrong). We also discussed the many techniques that are shown by numerous popular YouTube channels and gaming enthusiast websites that will never change your NAT type to type 1. If despite all of this, you want the vanity metric of a NAT type 1 on PS5 or PS4 you have a few options.

  1. Connect your PS5 or PS4 directly to your modem without using a router. If using a modem / router combo, enable bride mode on it.
  2. Purchase an additional IP address or block of IP addresses from your internet service provider.
  3. Get a separate internet connection / internet provider that is used only for your PlayStation console.

The first method of getting a NAT type 1 on PS5 or on PS4 is to plug your console directly into you modem without using a router. If your modem is a modem / router combo, you will need to put it in bridge mode. This is guaranteed (assuming your ISP is not using CGNAT) to get you a NAT type 1 on PS5 or PS4.

It allows your PlayStation to grab a public IP address directly from your internet service provider and therefore avoids the use of NAT entirely. This option surely works, however, you will not be able to connect anything else to the internet at the same time. For this reason, I would not recommend this method to most people.

The second method is the best option of the 3 for most people. Many internet service providers will allow you to purchase an additional IP address or block of 5 IP addresses for a small monthly fee tacked on to your internet bill each month. This is the ideal setup if you absolutely want to have a NAT type 1 on PlayStation and do not feel like disconnecting all of your other devices whenever you want to game.

With this method you will start by calling, emailing, or chatting with your internet service provider (ISP) about getting an additional IP address or block of IP addresses. Usually a bock of 5 is the smallest block you can purchase. You then sign the agreement. Then your internet service provider will then provide you with instructions on how to proceed. If not you may want to look at a setup that is like this. You will need the following equipment.

  1. Internet modem or internet modem router combo in bridge mode
  2. 5 port ethernet switch
  3. wireless router

Connect your 5 port switch to your internet modem. Connect your PS4 or PS5 to the ethernet switch, and connect your wireless router to the ethernet switch. This will enable you to have one public IP address used by your PlayStation, and another public IP address assigned to your router for connecting all of your other devices.

Your 3rd and final option is to get a separate internet connection with a different provider and use that exclusively for your PlayStation. This is going to be by far the most expensive option because you will be adding another internet subscription that will likely cost you between $35 and $100 per month.

The use case that this may be worth considering is if your existing ISP uses CGNAT. For example if you lived in rural Texas. Your options may be limited to a 10 Mbps DSL connection or a satellite based internet connection. Most satellite internet service providers including HughesNet, ViaSat, and Starlink use CGNAT. You will never be able to get a NAT type 1 using any of these services.

DSL will likely offer you a dedicated public IP address. You could for example have Starlink internet as your main internet service that you connect most of your devices to, and a 10 Mbps DSL line that is dedicated to your PS5 or PS4. This will be the most expensive option, but may be worth considering under certain circumstances.

Keep in mind that you do not need a NAT type 1 to get an open NAT in games. This is a common myth that simply has no merit. A NAT type 2 is ideal on PlayStation and still allows for an Open NAT in games. Open NAT in games is what really counts.

How to get NAT type 1

What is NAT Type A on Nintendo Switch

NAT type A on Nintendo Switch is roughly the equivalent of open NAT on other platforms. With a NAT type A on Switch you are not restricted in any way. All features will work optimally and you will usually be selected as the host for peer to peer (P2P) multiplayer matches. NAT Type A is idea for hard core Switch gamers. It also likely requires the most effort to obtain.

What is NAT type B and C on Nintendo Switch

NAT type B and NAT type C is roughly equivalent to moderate NAT on other platforms. Generally a NAT type B will not cause any issues. A NAT type C is slightly more restrictive but will still generally not cause any major issues.

What is NAT Type D and F on Nintendo Switch

A NAT type D or F on Nintendo Switch is roughly equivalent to a strict NAT on other platforms. You are likely to have significant issues connecting to online matches that use P2P technology. You will also never be chosen as the host for multiplayer matches. Additionally some features many not work properly.

How to Change Your NAT Type on Nintendo Switch to NAT Type A

There are a few reason you may want to change your NAT type to NAT type A on switch. Having a NAT type A greatly reduces the chance of having issues when playing online with other players. There are a few different methods for changing your NAT type on Nintendo Switch. Here is a few things to try.

Make sure you are not connected to the internet through a double NAT environment.

Double NAT occurs when your public IP address gets converted into a private IP address by a router via NAT, then a second router converts the private IP address into a different private IP address. Double NAT occurs either because there are two routers on your network connected together, or because your internet service provider use CGNAT. Double NAT is bad for gaming.

The most common reason for a double NAT environment is having more than one router on your home network. You may or may not even realize that you have two routers on your network. Very often the modem provided by your internet provider is a modem / router combo unit. If you do not disable the router functionality of a modem / router combo unit and connect your own router you will have double NAT. You can fix this in several ways.

  1. Put your modem / router combo unit into bridge mode.
  2. Replace your modem router combo unit with a straight modem.
  3. Eliminate your own router using only the modem / router combo unit.

Learn More About Why Two Routers Should Not Be Used on the Same Home Network

The other common reason for double NAT is because your ISP uses carrier grade NAT (CGNAT). CGNAT is most commonly used by 4G / 5G cellular based internet services and by satellite internet services including Starlink. With CGNAT your router does not get a public IP address assigned to it directly. Instead your router gets a private IP address that is assigned by your ISP. This private IP address is sharing a public IP address used by hundreds of other users in many cases.

Your router then takes the private IP provided by your ISP and creates it internal network using NAT. This results in double NAT. Double NAT is almost a guarantee of a strict NAT type. If you are connecting using a mobile hotspot, you are going to have double NAT issues. CGNAT does not allow for the usual techniques of changing your NAT type. Since you have no control over the router performing NAT on your ISP’s side, port forwarding and UPnP are not going to change your NAT type.

A VPN service is the best way to change your NAT type if you must use an internet service provider (ISP) that uses CGNAT. Given the choice, if your internet service provider uses CGNAT, look for a different provider. Generally cable, DSL, and fiber based internet service providers do not use CGNAT. CGNAT is typically most common with cellular and satellite ISPs.

Set up port forwarding. This is the most secure way of changing your NAT type to NAT type A. It is also the most most technical. Learn how to set up port forwarding on Nintendo Switch.

Enable UPnP on your router. This is the least technical way to get a NAT type A on Nintendo Switch.


Put your Nintendo Switch in the demilitilarized zone (DMZ) of your router. This will forward all ports to your console and get you an open NAT type.

Keep in mind that port forwarding, DMZ, and UPnP will not change your NAT type of you are in a double NAT environment. You must fix the double NAT issue first.

After making the changes, restart your router, and then restart your Nintendo Switch. Check it’s NAT type and go back though the steps if you are still not getting a NAT type A on your Switch console.

Conclusion

NAT Type is a complicated yet highly important topic that is widely discussed in the gaming community. There are significant amounts of myths and misinformation floating out there on the internet. Once NAT type is better understood it quickly becomes much easier to change your NAT type on Xbox, Switch, or PlayStation.

NAT is a necessary evil for gamers, at least for now. IPv6 is rolling out more and more, which will reduce our dependency on NAT. This is a huge step in the right direction for gamers. This is especially true for Xbox Live which is built almost entirely upon IPv6. In many cases if your Xbox Series X, Xbox Series S, or Xbox One has a public IPv6 address, your NAT type will be open. PlayStation Network is IPv6 enabled for some services. but requires IPv4 for most functions. IPv6 alone will not change your NAT type on PS5 or PS4.

FAQ

What NAT type is best for gaming

Open NAT type is the ideal NAT type for gaming. With open NAT all required ports are accessible and all functions will perform as designed. You will also be chosen as the host in most P2P multiplayer matches. Open NAT is best for gaming.

Is NAT type 2 good for gaming

NAT type 2 is good for gaming. There is absolutely no benefit to a NAT type 1 on PlayStation. A NAT type 2 will allow for an open NAT type in games. This means that all features will work properly and you will often be chosen as the host in P2P multiplayer matches.

Is NAT good for gaming

NAT is not good for gaming. NAT creates a number of issues for gaming. The reality is however, most people are going to be gamming on a network that uses NAT. UPnP is a function available on most routers than can help you game smoother when connected to a network using NAT.

How do I change my NAT type to open

1. Set up port forwarding. This is the most secure way of changing your NAT type to open. It is also the most most technical. Learn how to set up port forwarding on Xbox Series X and Xbox Series S.
Enable

2. UPnP on your router. This is the least technical way to get an open NAT on Xbox Series X, Xbox Series S, and Xbox One.

3. Put your Xbox in the demilitilarized zone (DMZ) of your router. This will forward all ports to your Xbox and get you an open NAT type.

Does Open NAT reduce ping

No Open NAT does not reduce ping. Ping is in no way related to NAT type. That said having an open NAT type does offer other advantages. Open NAT type is ideal for gaming on all platforms including PlayStation, Xbox, and PC. Open NAT does not reduce ping (latency).

What’s the best NAT type for PS4

NAT type 2 is best for PS4. NAT type 2 means that you PS4 is connected properly behind a router and all ports that re required for communication are open. NAT type 1 is not recommended for security reasons as it exposes your PS4 directly to the internet with a public IP address.

What is a NAT Type 3

NAT type 3 on PlayStation is when something is blocking the required connection to PlayStation Network. This could be cause by firewall rules or other issues, Double NAT is most often the culprit that is causing a NAT type 3. Double NAT is caused having multiple routers on your network or an internet service provider that uses carrier grade NAT (CGNAT).

Is NAT Type 1 Good

A NAT type 1 is the most open type of NAT on PS4 / PS5. It is actually not good from a security perspective as it means that your PlayStation console is connected directly to the internet without using a router. This is a security risk. A NAT type 2 is good on PS4 / PS5 as it allows for an Open NAT in games which not exposing your console directly to the internet.

Can I play online with NAT Type 3

Yes you can play online with a NAT type 3. However, you may have issues with certain features such as voice chat. You will also be unable to host multiplayer P2P matches. You may also experience some other random issue. Ideally you want to change your NAT type to a NAT type 2 on your PS4 or PS5.

What is the NAT type on PS4

NAT type on PS4 is a measurement of how effectively your PS4 can traverse NAT. NAT is a common issue for online gaming especially on PS4. On PS4 a NAT of 3 is most likely to cause issues. You want to change your NAT type to a NAT type 2 for optimal results.

Does NAT Affect FPS

NAT has no effect on frames per second (FPS). FPS is determined by your hardware and any optimizations that the game developer has put into place. Your graphics card (GPU) is the primary factor in determining your FPS. Your CPU also plays a smaller role in determining how many FPS you get.

Does Open NAT type increase speed

Open NAT type does not increase speed. NAT type has no effect on speed whatsoever. NAT type does however impact your ability to use certain features such as voice chat. NAT type also affects who you can match up with when playing P2P online multiplayer matches. Open NAT has no effect on speed.

How do I change my NAT type to open on PS4

1. Set up port forwarding. This is the most secure way of changing your NAT type to open. It is also the most most technical. Learn how to set up port forwarding on your PS4.

2. Enable UPnP on your router. This is the least technical way to get an open NAT on PS4.

3. Put your PS4 in the demilitilarized zone (DMZ) of your router. This will forward all ports to your Xbox and get you an open NAT type.