Page 1:802.11ac: The Beginning
Page 2:802.11ac Advances
Page 3:Broadcom: Insider Comments
Page 4:Broadcom: Insider Comments, Continued
Page 5:Broadcom: Insider Comments, Continued
Page 6:Test Setup And Methodology
Page 7:AirLive N450R And Asus RT-AC66U
Page 8:Belkin AC1200 DB And Buffalo AC1300/N900
Page 9:Linksys EA6500/AC1750 And Netgear R6300
Page 10:Results: 2 GB Folder Copy
Page 11:Results: PerformanceTest 7, Same-Room
Page 12:Results: PerformanceTest 7, Across-House
Page 13:Results: PerformanceTest 7 Graphs
Page 14:Results: IxChariot, Same-Room, 5.0 GHz
Page 15:Results: IxChariot
Page 16:Results: IxChariot, Across-House, 2.4 GHz
Page 17:802.11ac: A Substantial Step Up From 802.11n
Linksys EA6500/AC1750 And Netgear R6300
The Cisco Linksys EA6500 (£160) arrived in our hands, along with Cisco’s bundled WUMC710 802.11ac bridge (£100 separately). Based on some of our prior testing with the E3000 and other Linksys models, we had high hopes for the EA6500, and there were times when those hopes were met. However, we would recommend that, if you’re interested in the EA6500, you should read through the recent Newegg customer comments on the model. Some of the negative comments are indeed reflected in our results; others have clearly been addressed by Cisco already.
The EA6500 has a lot going for it, though. The router is simultaneous dual-band, with 3x3:3 antenna configurations in both bands. Two USB ports allow for printer sharing and add-on USB storage. DLNA support provides media serving, and QoS tools help prioritize certain traffic types.
As with Asus, Cisco has whipped up an app/browser-based control and file-streaming platform, called Linksys Smart Wi-Fi. This gives you the ability to control several of your router’s features, such as parental control, guest access, QoS, and USB storage, straight from your handset or tablet. Additionally, there are half a dozen applications (some of which are iOS- or Android-only, while others support both) for IP security camera monitoring, network security, media streaming, and so on.
As mentioned earlier, Cisco has continued Linksys’ propensity for kicking butt on its router’s built-in menus and options. While deep, the feature set is tidily swept inside of a very elegant, largely intuitive tabbed interface. That is, if you’re using a compatible browser. When we tried to log in via Chrome, all we saw was the “Log in” button and the country pull-down menu. Remember that Chrome is now the dominant PC Web browser. Oops.
Last up, we have the Netgear R6300 (£155). After the Asus and Linksys models, the R6300 is going to look a bit repetitive, but that’s primarily because the major router vendors have their businesses pretty much down to a pattern these days. A premium model, such as one debuting the latest Wi-Fi technology, is going to have two USB ports, simultaneous dual-band with a 3x3:3 design on both bands, a streamlined installation process, WPS, and four gigabit ports. All boxes come checked off here, and if you like Netgear’s upright, trapezoidal design, even better.
Not to be outdone by Linksys Smart Wi-Fi, Netgear has its own Netgear Genie, available for Windows, OS X, Android, and iOS. Netgear Genie lets you monitor and manage your network from afar. Apple iOS users can also output to any AirPrint-compatible printer using the AirPrint app through Netgear Genie.
Because we received two R6300s, we used our second unit as a 2.4 GHz bridge, given that Netgear advertises the router as being configurable to both bridge and AP modes. However, be prepared to do some research on how to get back into the device after switching modes because it’s no longer accessible from the default IP, and Netgear doesn’t go out of its way to illustrate the process. We'll give the company fair marks for a deep, feature-rich menu system with both Basic and Advanced tab views.
- 802.11ac: The Beginning
- 802.11ac Advances
- Broadcom: Insider Comments
- Broadcom: Insider Comments, Continued
- Broadcom: Insider Comments, Continued
- Test Setup And Methodology
- AirLive N450R And Asus RT-AC66U
- Belkin AC1200 DB And Buffalo AC1300/N900
- Linksys EA6500/AC1750 And Netgear R6300
- Results: 2 GB Folder Copy
- Results: PerformanceTest 7, Same-Room
- Results: PerformanceTest 7, Across-House
- Results: PerformanceTest 7 Graphs
- Results: IxChariot, Same-Room, 5.0 GHz
- Results: IxChariot
- Results: IxChariot, Across-House, 2.4 GHz
- 802.11ac: A Substantial Step Up From 802.11n