Since there isn’t a lot you can do with a router in terms of testing beyond using it in your everyday life and noting any problems or major plus points you might have, that’s exactly what I did. Over a 48 hour period I performed general usage of the device including wireless and wired.
I also tested the wireless transfer speed utilising the bundled adaptor from Edimax. For the test I sent a single AVI file of 1.014GB in size from one wired device to the wireless one and timed the transfer time. For comparison purposes I also made the transfer via an ethernet cable.
For the transfer speed I did 3 tests:
- Wireless with B/G/N all supported
- Wireless with N support only
As you can see the standard wireless setup of supporting b/g/n is not a good setup to use. For some reason this dramatically slows transfer times. However, switching to only supporting "n" standards speeds things up a lot. Wired is still the fastest, but since this router only supports upt o 150mb/s via WiFi this is understandable.
The only real problem I had during installation was that the phone line cable was too short. It’s only a metre or so long which while enough if you’re placing the router directly next to the phone socket, it creates problems when you want to move it further away. Typically my normal placement is about a metre away, which means it’s possible to have it where I want it, but it leaves a very stretched cable in its wake which is begging to be tripped over.
Port forwarding seemed like a slightly overcomplicated process, as it could ha
e been simplified with a few more drop downs. For example, instead of needing to manually input a device IP, a drop down of all the ones currently connected. It could also have been made easier by the ability to add a game to the list before adding ports, thereby giving you the ability to easily switch these ports to another device should you so wish.
Weirdly as well I had confliction errors appear whenever I applied my port settings, suggesting that the forward hadn’t been successful. However this was not the case as it does go through, but just tells you something is wrong; on closer inspection nothing appears to be. A little misleading.
Utilising the bundled wireless adaptor I did seem to have relatively poor signal in my relatively small house. Despite only being 5 or so metres away from the router, and seperated by one stud wall the signal would drop to 42%. Even going wireless a mere metre or so from the router provided a maximum possible signal of 65% which seems a little weak.
It must be said that I had no problems utilising my mobile phone when hooked up to the router’s WiFi. Without another wireless adaptor to compare with unfortunately I was unable to check whether this was the router’s problem or wireless adaptor.
This router comes in the budget end of things at around £35.