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This review is from: EDIMAX EW-7438RPn Mini N300 Mini Wi-Fi Extender/Access Point/Wi-Fi Bridge
Pros: -- compact
-- no wall wart
-- good indicators
Cons: -- sufficient power, not overwhelming
Other Thoughts: Although I immediately connected to "Edimaxext.setup" signal, I couldn't get the config page until I reconnected and thenDISCONNECTED from my default network. From there, the web config page popped right up in Chrome, with no URL entered. This is a great, simple device, actually brilliant in it's operation. Although you can do the same things with a common router, they may need aftermarket firmware and a lot more settings. If you need a simple-to-configure access point or bridge, the Edimax is hard to beat. Not having extra boxes on shelf, wall wart, etc. are nice too!READ FULL REVIEW
This review is from: TP-LINK Archer C9 Wireless AC1900 Dual Band Gigabit Router
Pros: -- informative lighted icons
-- excellent web interface
Cons: -- microscopic default login info printed on the label. (Can’t manufacturers print over 2pt font??)
Other Thoughts: Externally this is a beautiful box. The 3 top-mounted, tiltable and detachable antennas open the possibility of upgrading antennas. There is a rocker switch for power. A push button by the side USB cuts the WiFi signal, perhaps to stop the kids surfing at night?? It tilts slightly backward, but the base has good rubber strips on base and unit. I like informative lights and this one has 8 icons easily visible along the top. They won’t keep you awake though. The unit has one business-card sized warm spot in upper left, so it should be fine in a cabinet with some space. It uses the same Broadcom BCM 4709 chip running at 1Ghz as top rated routers. DD-wrt firmware is pending. I tested the 2.4GHz wireless networks, but there are 5GHz also broadcasted (both guest and regular) if you wish.
The web interface is excellent. Use “admin, admin” to log in and you’re presented an elegant and simple layout with 3 tabs (Quick, Basic, and Advanced) with all options down the left column. To me it’s the easiest and clearest router design I’ve ever seen. The front page shows a network diagram with all popup information: SSID, passwords, clients connected and so forth. But you can get as down-and-dirty as you want with manual settings. There are even settings for “NAT boost” (some sort of performance boost) and a WDS bridging wizard. "Reboot" is on the main screen. You can optionally isolate clients from each other on the Guest SSIDs and restrict access in various ways with good parental controls. There are enough options to make any network geek goosebumpy.
Two USB (one 2.0 and one 3.0) ports for shared drives or printers are provided. (You may need to download a utility from TP-Link to use a printer.) In 10 seconds, USB devices are available. The front panel lights an USB icon for each device inserted.
The performance is very good to excellent. Compared to a test Arris router the signal up to 50 feet inside and outside a 2 story + basement house was always a significant 6-12db stronger. The beam forming (not a marketing ploy!) actually works: after 3-5 seconds the signal boosted 5db or more. Each time I moved, it locked onto the client. The speed was always more than my 12+ Mbps ISP allowed through it, so streaming was smooth. There are other powerful routers on the market, but the TP-Link is a great contender to consider.
Pros: -- form factor
-- informative lights
Other Thoughts: Updated review: I thought there might be some filtering going on with my SurgeMaster protector and tried the bridge without it. It worked well. So there must be some sort of filtering going on. If you have any trouble, make sure you don't have either one plugged into a surge device. Without the protector, it WPS'd right away and kept a steady (amber blink) to a distant room. My faith in Zyxel is restored. I would recommend the Powerline adapters.READ FULL REVIEW
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