April 3, 2012

REVIEW : Linksys E3200 Router

Introduction

The Linksys E3200 router is part of Linksys's latest generation of home wireless networking products, specifically routers. This model is the second-from-the-top, the best being the E4200. This is a dual-band router with Wireless-N (Really now?), operating at up to 300+300Mbps. It also has "enhanced" MIMO antennas, with "Speedboost" technology. This router sells for $159.99 at Cisco's website.
The E3500



Back Panel Picture



As you can seen in the picture, from left to right:

USB 1.1/2.0 Port, 4 Gigabit Ethernet ports, an Internet port, WPS button, power indicator, and a Power port.

Specifications



  • Wireless-N
  • Dual-Band
  • 300+300Mbps connectivity
  • 6 Internal Antennas
  • 4 Gigabit Ethernet ports
  • USB port for external storage or a printer
  • "Speedboost" technology
  • Home Theater ready
  • Easy set-up (Cisco Connect)
  • Assigns router name automatically (Great for uncreative people, like me)
  • Guest SSID
  • 6 Internal MIMO arrays.

Either there was a problem with my router, or I, with the help of several Linksys technicians, set up the router improperly. Even at 1 metre (or less) away from my router, the link speed only reached 144Mbps, which is disappointing, as even my WRT120Nv3 gave 300Mbps. If you plan on buying this router, or any Linksys product in general, please be advised that there is only 90 days of technical support which is given, if you desire more afterwards, you will have to pay a fee.

Performance

Using my laptop, with an Intel Centrino wireless chip, I achieved, on average 3 MBps transfer speed, roughly 24 Mbps. Not great, takes quite a long time to transfer large files. 

Conclusion

Price : 

The E3200 retails for $159.99

The Good :

  • Gigabit ports
  • Simultaneous Dual-band
  • USB port with printer support
  • Easy setup, automatically giving your router a name
  • Guest SSID

The Bad :

  • Costs too much ($159.99)
  • Bad performance
  • Range is not impressing
  • Only 90 days of tech support

The Bottom Line :

This router has the features (on paper) to allow you to survive through the next generation of products, but in reality (or at least my model), it won't. With only 90 days of technical support, and with technicians refusing to allow you to claim your warranty UNLESS you buy it from their store (for a premium), this product is not worth its price.

The next time I'm buying a router, I'm going with our editor's choice, an ASUS router with all the features of this, but without Gigabit ports and an USB port, , which i'm sure ASUS will add in the future.

Even further, the ASUS router costs $100 less, making it the best bang for your buck, making it our Editor's choice!

Overall Score : 7/10

Click here for our review on the ASUS router.

Pictures are property of Linksys

Deon Hua is the Editor-in-Chief at [blank]’s Universe. He is also a technology enthusiast with his expertise in computers and Pro Audio and Lighting. You'll probably catch Deon writing a movie review when he has time.