Poor range and a high price tag put paid to this router’s chances
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D-Link's top-end DIR-855 router has been around for some time, but it's still the firm's fastest, most luxurious model. It offers dual-band operation and theoretical raw throughput of up to 300Mbits/sec on each.It's also the only router this month to boast a screen. Using the two buttons on the front of the DIR-855, you can browse a series of info screens presenting status updates on your internet connection, wired and wireless network, stats and security. There's nothing here that couldn't be gleaned from the comprehensive setup web pages, though.And despite the on-paper specifications, we were disappointed with the router's all-round performance. In our best-case scenario the DIR-855 produced speeds up there with the best. On the 5GHz band at close range we recorded router to laptop rates of 135Mbits/sec and 88Mbits/sec in reverse - as fast as the Belkin Double N+ and Netgear WNDR3700. Over 2.4GHz those figures dropped to a mediocre 76Mbits/sec and 57Mbits/sec.But its range is what really dragged the DIR-855 down. In our long-range tests, it didn't have the power to establish any sort of connection over 5GHz, and the transfer rates of the 2.4GHz 802.11n were second to last; only the low-cost TP-Link was slower.Elsewhere, the DIR-855 has a USB port for storage device and printer sharing, and a broad spectrum of tools that include a good set of QoS and URL filter settings. But, there's just no getting around the range limitations of this router, and its high price puts a seal on what is a disappointing overall package.
This Review appeared in the June, 2010 issue of PC & Tech Authority Magazine
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