Articles: Networking

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Wired Performance

We measured the speed of routing using the iperf utility. The client machines were running Windows 7 64-bit. The router’s firmware was version The data-transfer speed was measured on a client machine connected to the router’s LAN.

The speed of the direct connection is as high as 600 Mbps, which is higher compared to the previous router from Netgear. Of course, you can only enjoy this speed on a Gigabit internet connection. The PPPoE connection can be as fast as 500 Mbps, which is an excellent result, too. PPTP is somewhat slower while L2TP is much slower, especially when receiving data. This must be some firmware error because the WNDR3800 used to deliver over 100 MB/s in this test. Overall, the WNDR4500 is a high-performance router and calls for a high-speed internet channel to show its best. If connected to a 100 Mbps channel, the router’s resources can be allotted to the USB disk related applications, though.

Wireless Performance

The WNDR4500 features the fastest Wi-Fi 802.11n controllers available at the moment (at least among what’s actually available on the market), but 802.11ac is already coming up.

So, the WNDR4500 can offer two access points, one in each frequency band, in 3T3R mode at the maximum speed of 450 Mbps. We tested the router at its maximum settings: 450 Mbps, WPA2-PSK, short preamble. The router being able to use two frequency channels in the 2.4GHz band, we can expect it to deliver high performance. The 5GHz band is used less, so it can be reserved for bandwidth-sensitive applications such as HD video streaming. We used USB-adapters ASUS USB-N13 (Ralink, 2T2R, 300 Mbps), Netgear WNA3100 (Broadcom, 2T2R, 300 Mbps), dual-band D-Link DWA-160 (revision A2, Atheros, 2T2R, 300 Mbps), and a dual-band bridge Trendnet TEW-680MB (Ralink, 3T3R, 450 Mbps). The tested devices were placed at a distance of 5 meters from each other. The router was positioned upright on its stand.

The numbers suggest that the WNDR4500 doesn't like the ASUS adapter, showing a low speed with it. But the rest of the devices live up to our expectations. The 300 Mbps devices can offer a data-transfer rate of 70-110 Mbps while the 450Mbps one can give you 130-180 Mbps. The 5GHz band proves to be somewhat faster, obviously due to the lack of interference from other wireless networks. The numbers are indicative of the benefits of 3T3R mode in wireless routers and adapters. It’s a shame that Wi-Fi adapters in notebooks are but seldom equipped with three antennas.

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