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77 posts

Master Geek
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Topic # 114987 9-Mar-2013 13:20
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Hey guys,

So I'm after a new router to use on the TCL cable network. Been doing some research between Linksys, Dlink and Netgear. I've come to realise that Netgear is out of the question. Apparently, it's quite poor/terrible?

So I'm looking for something new from Linksys or Dlink. Now, I heard Linksys is better? Is this true?

What are your thoughts?

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  Reply # 777341 9-Mar-2013 13:33
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Hey mate

 

With complete honesty, every person is going to have a different answer to your question based on their previous experiences with either the products or their support teams. I am not sure where you heard Netgear is rubbish, for example, but I run 2 netgear routers in ym home and they both work well for me. 

 

The question comes down to, what features and speeds are you looking for? What is the size of your house? Assuming you want dual band or usb or gigabit ports as future proof solutions, how much of a premium are you willing to spend on each of these functions? Do you want apps? Parental controls, etc?

 

After you know the sort of area you look at, you then need to be more specific. For example, let's say you definitely want a n300 speed, and you want dual band for the future advancements but you only have 1 device that can connect to it (and it operates at 300 mbps max). So you need an n600. Let's say you have an external hard drive or the likes, and you want to be able to access it wirelessly (i don't recommend this for streaming though unless you want a very high powered router - I've heard bad things about the speed limits on the usb ports of every model of router where i work (retail sales)). And you have a desktop computer or media centre or server of some sort that is permanent placed and would therefore be wired to your router and it has a gigabit network card in it. 

 

You'd be looking at the models of n600+ brands that have usb and gigabit ports available in New Zealand at a good price as well as having good range (a must with wireless) and the product with the least negative reviews. Honestly, all three of Netgear, Dlink and Linksys (and even Belkin too sometimes) have good products in some of their lines and bad products in others. 

 

Feel free to post up any two or three you're looking at or ask any more questions, and we will try help you as much as possible :)

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  Reply # 777342 9-Mar-2013 13:43
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You need to take a few steps back and actually look at your requirements rather than just looking at brands. There are a vast number of features in routers today and you shoudl be looking at these first.

Is wireless performance important to you? If so you'll want to look at 5Ghz capable kit these days as in a built up area 2.4GHz can be pretty much useless. Is Gigabit important to you? Will you be wanting VoIP in the future? Do you want USB capabilities for storage? Do you need access control to limit access to users? Do you want a guest network with isolation? The list goes on..

Simply comparing two brands is a little bit like deciding you're going to buy a new car but automatically narrowing this down to a Ford or a Holden.

IMHO the best all around device for a home user right now is the Fritz!box 7340 or 7390. For a power user with networking skills the best option is a Mikrotik RB2011UAS with WiFi.

I'd take a stab right now and say that the Mikrotik won't be suitable for you because you won't have the ability to configure it. You would need to decide with the Fritz!box is in the price range you're willing to pay for a router.



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Master Geek
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  Reply # 777352 9-Mar-2013 14:01
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Thanks for your reply. For me, in my house there's a bit going on. I have a Desktop, a few virtual machines (servers), a X-Box, a Blu-ray player (which I'd like to use the DLNA to stream movies), my sisters work laptop, our mobile smartphones and a Android tablet.

You could say I'm an enthusiast if that's the right term. I'd like to go for something with high performance. So, a router that can handle busy periods and file transfers. Eventually I want to have a central storage server or NAS drive.

Our place, is well, fairly small (120sqm), but my current Dlink DIR-655 doesn't reach the furthest room, where its becoming more necessary. In fact, in that room I want to move my Modem and Router to, and have the rest of the house catch the wireless signal.

So, definitely looking for Dual Band, two USB ports (one for printer and a network drive).

For Netgear I was looking at:
http://www.telstraclearshop.co.nz/shop/internet/networking/wireless-routers/WNDR3800-100AUS.html
or
http://www.telstraclearshop.co.nz/shop/internet/networking/wireless-routers/WNDR4500-100AUS.html

For Dlink:
http://www.telstraclearshop.co.nz/shop/internet/networking/wireless-routers/2028514.html

As for Linksys, I've no idea where to start.

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  Reply # 777551 10-Mar-2013 07:22
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I would not recommend the Linksys UFO type wireless routers (WAG160N, WAG320N etc), signal strength seems to be poor. Other Linksys products I have found excellent.

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  Reply # 777559 10-Mar-2013 08:08
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Hi, I agree the Linksys UFO routers are crap, both as routers and Wireless performance just dont do it. I would agree wtih Steve either a Mikrotik RB2011UAS with WiFi, or a maybe the IN model without wireless and a couple of Unifi's to cover that off.

Alternatively I have had good results with TP-Links like this,

http://www.ascent.co.nz/productspecification.aspx?ItemID=385184

Have not tried their lattest top end units but they look good on specs.

http://www.ascent.co.nz/productspecification.aspx?ItemID=409335

Cyril

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Master Geek
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  Reply # 777583 10-Mar-2013 11:24
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I have had a WNDR3700 for about 3 years, bought when I lived in Aus. Hasn't missed a beat. Have not been a fan of the 5ghz band as signal penetration through walls is pretty pathetic.

Have used Netgear products for a fair while and been quite happy.



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Master Geek
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  Reply # 777590 10-Mar-2013 11:46
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Thanks guys! I think I'm going to go with a Netgear one. Cheers! ;)

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Master Geek
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  Reply # 777609 10-Mar-2013 12:37
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Sounds like a good tip from Cyril too. I'm going to try a TP-Link.

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  Reply # 777613 10-Mar-2013 12:54
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imd6662: Sounds like a good tip from Cyril too. I'm going to try a TP-Link.


i use the first one that cyril linked.  has been good for me.


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  Reply # 777617 10-Mar-2013 13:16
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Yogi02: I have had a WNDR3700 for about 3 years, bought when I lived in Aus. Hasn't missed a beat. Have not been a fan of the 5ghz band as signal penetration through walls is pretty pathetic.

Have used Netgear products for a fair while and been quite happy.


To me its an advantage, when we deploy in enterprise and school environments to have each AP stay within the room means less interference so other rooms around dont suffer as a result. Obviously having 8 non overlapping 20MHz channels and little straying from each room means each AP has a clean environment to work in.

Cyril

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  Reply # 777635 10-Mar-2013 14:37
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Yogi02:  Have not been a fan of the 5ghz band as signal penetration through walls is pretty pathetic. 



The future of wireless is bands and signals that don't leave rooms. 2.4Ghz in a metropolitan environment can be heavily impacted these days - in a built up area such as a CBD there are apartment blocks where 2.4 wireless is totally unusable where you've got 100+ other networks within range.

802.11ac pretty much a dead loss as well in these environments, and ultimately 5GHz will go the same way. We've not going to see such improvement until 802.11ad launches in the 60Ghz band delivering fast speeds over very short distances.

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Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 778070 11-Mar-2013 16:24
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+1 for TP-Link. Good brand; never had any issues.

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  Reply # 781130 13-Mar-2013 16:02
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StevieT: +1 for TP-Link. Good brand; never had any issues.


+1 ror me too... TP-Link is made in China I think but that being said I have never had to reset mine in over a year.  Mine has Gigabit ports and USB expansion too.  I had many problems with Linksys dropping out but I don't remember the model number.  I have used Dlink too with no issues.  I when for TP-link because of the price.


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  Reply # 781139 13-Mar-2013 16:11
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Make sure whatever you get is IPv6 capable. As such i would probably agree with Fritzbox or mikrotik. Personally i use PFsense on older hardware (small ASIC units are available too) which is unbeatable. Otherwise you could look at a custom firmware like DD-WRT on a compatible device?





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Master Geek
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  Reply # 781161 13-Mar-2013 17:06
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The TP-Link WDR3600 arrived today. Installation and setup trivial as you would expect.

Immediate results pretty gratifying, achieving near nominal 100/10 speeds on a gigabit wired connection, a great improvement from the venerable WRT54G it replaced (25/10 on a 100Mb wired port), definitely proving that throughput is about more than port speed.

Initial wireless tests were very exciting: 54/10 on the couch. However after this initial spurt of enthusiasm, and closing a few doors, things have settled down to a more modest 16-25/10 which isn't as startling as I'd hoped but still an improvement on the 10/10 max the WRT54G could deliver.

It seems like the WDR3600 doesn't provide much better signal strength than the WRT54G in the 2.4GHz band. It remains to be seen whether it deliver more consistent link speed and reliability. The 56Hz signal drops off rapidly outside the same room so on the whole 2.4Ghz still seems the best choice around the house.



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