802.11ac support, 2.4GHz and 5GHZ support
As a 5GHz router, the Netgear R6300 excels. It provides a comprehensive feature set and easy installation. Problematically, it's very expensive, has disappointing 2.4GHz performance and is outperformed as a 802.11ac router by the Linksys EA6500.
And frankly, even if it's compatible with future 802.11ac hardware, we wouldn't recommend investing in such hardware at this time just on the back of that.
Superb 802.11ac performance
The Netgear D6300 is an odd concoction. Visually it is an eye sore and its specifications make for uninspired reading, but in practice Netgear has been able to pull off the wireless miracles it claimed were possible with smart firmware. Still choosing an ADSL2 plus modem rather than VDSL is a missed opportunity, but for those without fibre optic broadband this is a neat all-in-one solution which pleasantly surprised us.
ADSL is built in, great firmware and associated apps
The D6300 is perfect for those who have ADSL2+, but want to be ready when the National Broadband Network (NBN) fibre comes along. As has become the trend in new ADSL routers, it includes both an ADSL2+ port and a Gigabit WAN port, ready to be switched over to the NBN when it finally comes your way.
Good looks, bad 2.4GHz coverage
The D6300 is a strange beast: so much about it is likeable, but it's spoilt by poor 2.4GHz coverage, random 5GHz disconnects, and inexplicable things such as email on a Mac slowing to a crawl whenever it's in use (other routers I've tried don't do this). Really, for the price, you should be able to expect a little better.
Easy to set up, great improvement
In conclusion, if you are looking for stupid fast speeds and want something that is a "plug and play" style with minimal set up or tech knowledge needed this is a good product. If you aren't looking to make a proverbial fortress of Nerd then this would be a good choice for an upgrade.
Inexpensive, High routing throughput
Of course, you can generate your own performance charts to compare different devices. I found the performance comparison between the BR-6478AC (black triangle) with the D-Link DIR-850L (blue triangle) to be very interesting. Both use the same RealTek chipsets, so why does the Edimax consistently outperform the D-Link? Perhaps D-Link will have a firmware upgrade that will bring the 850L up to the performance levels of the Edimax.
My best router
Finally, I absolutely love the way this router looks. I have it sitting right next to my flat screen tv. The LED "NETGEAR" lights really gives it class. It doesn't have a lot of super bright LED lights that flash with network activity in the front, and if anything, the power and wireless network lights are a little too dim. Netgear must have tried to listen to the home entertainment crowd on designing the outward appearance of this device cause it's really a good looking router.
Well-featured home wireless router with good performance
The R6300 is a well-featured home wireless router with good performance in 2.4GHz and 5GHz 802.11n modes. In 802.11ac mode it was decent, although anyone expecting close to gigabit speed will still be disappointed. At around £200, it's more expensive than some of its rivals.
5GHz 802.11n is speedy
As a 5GHz router, the Netgear R6300 excels. It provides a comprehensive feature set and easy installation. Problematically, it's very expensive, and frankly, even if it's compatible with future 802.11ac hardware, we wouldn't recommend investing in any such hardware at this time just on the back of that.
Signal strength & speed, Intuitive GUI
Considering the fact that you can get a good router for less than half that price, this may seem excessive. However, this router truly does deliver and is prepared for the next generation of Wi-Fi devices. There are not many options for Gigabit routers on the market right now, but if you have one, you are set up for the long-term. Considering the features, performance, and future capability of the R6300, this device is worth the asking price.
Ground breaking 802.11ac & 802.11n performance
We come back to the key questions in the intro: will you see the performance benefit of switching to 802.11ac? Yes, 802.11ac to 802.11ac is incredible. But should you buy now? Arguably not until prices drop and 802.11ac devices and USB dongles become widely available - a bridge is impractical for all but the most hardened speed fanatic.
Good USB sharing performance
Netgear's R6300 is a cream-of-the-crop dual-band wireless router that supports the 802.11ac standard. It's a great overall unit that will work well in any networking environment. Team it up with client devices that support 802.11ac, and it will supply wireless speeds that are noticeably faster than 802.11n. Indeed, it's a router that represents the next step in wireless networking and it's well worth considering.
WD My Net AC1300 is performing well
If you just need a wireless N router and are not planning on using the new "AC" wireless capabilities, there are better choices out there. But if you need or want to stream HD video over your wireless network then this is a good choice (the bridges are the key to connecting to an "AC" 5GZ network) as it is fully capable of doing just that.
Simple setup, Intuitive user interface
Competent is the word which most comes to mind with the AC1300. It is solidly constructed, fast and nicely featured but it looks dull, isn't as quick as the fastest routers and lacks the ambitious Cloud platforms being developed by Asus, D-Link and Linksys. In that scenario the My Net AC1300 needed to be cheaper to really catch our attention.
Super-fast, great range, lots of features
Lastly, as I do for most products I test, I looked at power consumption. For a device you'll leave on all the time, this can matter. I was pleased to see that the WDR4300 maxed out at 4 watts with wireless on, where the older Netgear router was averaging 6-7 watts. Excellent.
Full gigabit ports ensure ultimate transfer speeds
The TP-Link TL-WDR430 is a very solid dual-band router that performs like the big boys but costs about half as much. It doesn't have the prettiest GUI, but there are very few features that it is lacking. Those looking for the maximum bang-for-buck, the TP-Link N750 is hard to beat.
Flexible and great performance
This device is great since it runs DD-WRT, so you have many flexible choices on configuring it, but the defaults out of the box work well. For example, if you connect the router via DHCP to a cable-modem then you don't have to specify logins such as PPPoE. If you are technically adept, you can customize many options such as creating a guest-only network for visitors who need to connect to the internet, but not gain access to the rest of your network.
The only minor issue I encountered was a somewhat buggy bios when the unit arrived. Using the internal software, the unit happily downloaded and installed its own firmware update from Asus. After that, this unit has been an excellent upgrade to my network. You will notice an improvement over older technology almost immediately. I first noticed this during configuration, and when browsing around the web. Several games and apps that I had issues with hanging or lag disappeared.
Full Featured Wireless Router
A final comment about the bandwidth that this unit supports. You need to keep in mind that no matter how fast and how much data a router can pass, it cannot make your Internet connection any bigger or any faster! So, if your Internet connection is capable of 10 gigabits per second and your router is capable of 800 gigabits per second guess what? The fastest connection you can get is 10 gigabits per second!!
Great router for the bucks
My wireless-N router by another popular brand just died on me over the weekend after about one year of use. Having good experience with wireless-G router by Netgear in the past, I decided to go with this new model. I was not disappointed.
Set up was a breeze and much easier than previous model and the other brand of routers. I connected the router to my Time Warner broadband modem, restart the modem for it to recognize the modem. My computer detected it right away.
This is an impressive Wi Fi router
I bought this because the Wi Fi router-DSL modem combination provided by CentryTel could not hold up to the the demands of Skype. I an currently running both Wi Fi devices on widely separate channels in the 2.4 b/g frequency band. This Hawking router is solid, Skype is smooth. I recommend this router without reservation.
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