Customer Review

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Get the right firmware, 24 Jan 2011
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Netgear Range Max Dual Band Wireless-N Gigabit Router (Electronics)
I bought this to replace my much loved Belkin N1 Vision which recently died. I paired it with a Draytek Vigor 120 and the two work perfectly together, with the Netgear handling the PPPoE connection to BT itself and the Vigor in pure bridge mode. I upgraded to the latest firmware (1.0.6.98) as soon as I got the Netager and regretted it immediately. Looking around the forums it seems 1.0.4.68 is the current sweet spot and things have worked beautifully since I installed that. The '4' and '6' in the firmware numbers appear to refer to the IP version support and I have no need for IPv6 at present so rolling back was no great loss.

So, first impressions are that the device is nowhere near as attractive as the Belkin. The pictures you see on the web flatter it and the side they don't show has labels and text and fitting holes etc. The Belkin sat proudly on my desk, whereas this device needs to be hidden. The build quality is very slightly suspect too, with the on/off switch on the back feeling very flimsy. Not too much of a worry as I leave the device on 24/7, but I have had a Netgear power switch fail before and they fail in the off state. Also, its not possible to turn the LEDs off, which is a bit of a pain if the device sits in a bedroom or you generally want it to be inconspicuous. How often do you really need to look at the flashing lights?

However, the real reason I bought this device was for functionality, not appearance, and this is where the device shines. My PS3 connects wirelessly and I can now watch iPlayer streamed flawlessly and without stutter, even while someone else is streaming Seesaw or TVCatchup on their laptop. Couldn't do that before so the Netgear/Vigor pair are certainly doing something right. Wireless N speed seems to be a steady 200MB/s in most places in the house and 300MB/s if you're in the same room as the device.

I don't make too many exotic configurations on the device, but its DynDns functionality works nicely with OpenDns. Being able to filter the more unpleasant side of the Internet gives a parent a feeling of security, even if they know its not going to be perfect. Static IP reservations was something sorely missing from the Belkin and works well on the Netgear. I've turned on QoS also, although its hard to tell what benefit that is really giving. Certainly no adverse affects. The only down side to the web interface is that the device seems to need to reboot for even the most trivial change so initial setup can be a bit time consuming.
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Location: London

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