So, the ASUS WL500g Premium is based on the BCM4704 processor from Broadcom. It is a 32-bit MIPS processor with a default clock rate of 300MHz, but it is clocked at 264MHz in the WL500g Premium.
The router’s firmware is stored in a Spansion flash memory chip (8MB capacity, 90ns access time when initializing and 25ns access time when accessing a memory page).
The router has 32 megabytes of system memory in two DDR SDRAM chips from Hynix.
There are two controllers outside the screen. One is the VT6212L chip from VIA, the other is the BCM5325E chip from Broadcom. The latter is a Fast Ethernet switch with an integrated 128-bit frame buffer and automatic cable type detection (ordinary or crossover).
The VIA chip is a four-port USB 2.0 host-controller. The router has only two USB ports, though.
And finally, a console can be connected to the WL-500W via UART bus for debugging purposes. This connector was missing in our sample of the router, but there was a seat for it on the PCB.
The single new component in the WL-500W is the WLAN module that supports draft IEEE 802.11n.
By the way, this router is one of the first devices for which the manufacturer guarantees full compatibility with the final version of the new wireless communication standard. The separate card carries a BCN4321 MAC-level controller and a BCM2055 RF chip.
These two chips make up the Intensi-fi chipset from Broadcom that is becoming ever more popular among WLAN equipment makers. Here are its specs quoted from the Broadcom website.
The electronic stuffing of the WL-500W had done well in the WL-500g Premium, and ASUS engineers didn’t want to invent anything new, except for the WLAN card. There is only one problem here: the new model uses a Fast Ethernet switch. This solution was good for the 802.11 standard but not quite for the new WLAN standard. As we learned from our tests of the D-Link DIR-655, the 802.11n can only reveal its full potential when used together with Gigabit Ethernet.