Review: Linksys Cisco E3200 dual band N router

GERARD CAMPBELL
Last updated 11:12 14/02/2012
Linksys Cisco E3200 dual band N router

LINKSYS CISCO E3200: Extends wi-fi broadband range and strength.

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REVIEW: The E3200 is a 802.11n router that extends wireless broadband coverage. But be warned: it does not have a modem installed, so you will need to connect it through your existing broadband modem.

The E3200 is a sleek, good- looking box with all the important connections at the back: power socket, four ethernet ports and one for the internet connection. There is also a push-button at the back for the Wi-fi Protected Setup (WPS) feature, as well as a USB port for the likes of firmware updates.

Connecting it to my existing Netgear DG834G modem/router using Cisco's Connect software was hassle-free and I was soon running. The E3200's box boasts of being able to offer speeds up to 300Mbps, but there was no way I would get close to speeds like that thanks to our broadband infrastructure, but I did notice an increase, at times, in my broadband speeds from the usual 1.6Mbps to 3Mbps (depending on network congestion and using speedtest.net)

The E3200 increased my wireless network's coverage throughout the house and I was able to get a pretty good signal in my bedroom, which is at the far end of the house and away from my normal router/modem. It also let the children watch YouTube videos to their hearts' content, thanks to the increased signal.

The E3200 actually sets up two wireless networks, one at the 2.4Ghz range and the other at the 5Ghz range, so if one is tied up with another device (a cordless phone, for example) it will switch to the free frequency. It also creates a guest network feature which lets other people connect to your wireless network (invited, of course) but they cannot gain access to local files stored on your computer. That's handy.

All in all, Cisco's E3200 dual band N router is a handy, if somewhat pricey addition for a home network if you want to increase the strength of your wi-fi network and eke a little bit of speed from that copper connection.

Linksys Cisco E3200 dual band N router

RRP: $279.95

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