751 of 779 people found the following review helpful
I have a lot of wireless devices in my household and I am always looking for better range and features from a Wireless Router. I decided to give the Netgear WNDR4300-100NAS Wireless Router a try.
This router works well, has excellent coverage, has an excellent user interface, uses SAMBA to share either storage or a printer which has native support on Windows machines and on Apple computers, supports Kindle Fire and Apple devices (IPAD, ITOUCH) with a SAMBA app. This unit has the same security hole that every other router I have tried has in that it allows you to log into the device via the wireless using just http instead of https which means that you are broadcasting your user id and password unencrypted over the air. To avoid this sign in only using one of the hard wire router ports.
Here are the things that I wanted it to be able to do:
1. Support Apple products including IPAD2, IPAD3, and the I-Touch.
2. Support multiple Microsoft Operating Systems to include: Vista Pro, Windows 7 Pro, Windows 7 Home, Windows 8, and Windows Home Server.
3. Support multiple manufacturers of Internet Enabled TVs
4. Support multiple manufacturers of Internet Enabled Blue Ray.
5. Support multiple manufacturers of Internet Enabled Audio Receivers.
6. Provide full coverage to a two story home of 3300 square feet, and attached three car garage, and coverage to all areas of the 1/3 acre property that the house sits on.
I was also looking for a router that could provide the highest level of protection to include the latest security levels on RF with protection turned on as default, the ability to turn off SSID (turning off broadcast ID makes it that much harder for someone to break into the system) and good security on Router Configuration control.
One of the things you need to understand about dual band routers is that the 2.4 Ghz band will pass easily through walls and other obsticals while the 5 Ghz band will not. This means that you will generally have the best coverage with the 2.4 band and the worst coverage with the 5 Ghz band. My testing showed this premise to be absolutely correct. The 5 Ghz band does fine with one or two walls, but quickly deteriorates after that. Thus the coverage in the yard was almost exclusively the 2.4 Ghz band as was most of the garage.
I should also mention here that I tried turning this router several ways and found that the radiation pattern of the signal was generally the same no matter how I turned it! This is an important note which means that you can turn it whichever way works for you for best aesthetics. I found that the stand that it comes with enables the easiest placement in my environment.
Here are my results:
First and probably the most important to a lot of folks, this system is very easy to configure! In fact, if pressed, you could just connect cables, power up the unit and run with it! Wireless is preconfigured for security and the unique password for the unit is contained on the strip with the SSID and Network Key on the internal package of paperwork.
The user interface is straight forward and easy to navigate. You have an enormous amount of flexibility with the configuration of this unit. I was easily able to accomplish my requirement of turning off SSID. This unit also includes a sign-out feature for the administrator and will actually disconnect if you forget and wander off to another website. Using the back button will NOT allow you to connect until you have completed the sign in process again. The only negative I can find is that the unit allows you to connect to the Admin functions via the wireless and does not use HTTPS for encryption. This means that someone could read your password information if they were watching the network.
Here are my testing results:
For the Apple products, this router supported them with the following caveots: 1. The Apple Touches do not support the 5 Ghz band so that frequency of the router was useless to them. Both of the Ipad models though supported and used both bands. Due to the construction of the Ipads and of the Ipods, reception was not as good in either distance or in quality as any of the other equipment. This has nothing to do with the router and everything to do with the design of the Apple equipment.
For the Microsoft products, I had the best range on both bands with the four different laptops that I tested. I was able to reach over 200 feet from the router with the 2.4 Ghz band and just under 100 feet with the 5 Ghz band.
All three of my Internet enabled Televisions which were located in different areas of the house, floors, and in the garage, were able to connect to the 2.4 Ghz band without issue. Only two of the televisions were able to maintain a consistent connection with the 5Ghz band. The third television was the farthest from the router and had the most number of walls and floors between it and the router (four walls and one floor). I had the router located on the second floor, in the middle of the house, against the front wall of the house.
All of the Internet enabled radio receivers were able to connect without issue using either band.
All of the Internet enabled Blue Ray Players were able to utilize the 2.4 Ghz band and the 5 Ghz band whil only the unit located in the garage next to the Television in the garage could only connect via the 2.4 Ghz band.
By setting up all of my portable units to utilize either of the two bands and to be able to automatically connect, I was able to wander around my yard and maintain a connection with everything except the I-Touches. The I-Touches were able to reach out to 90 percent of the yard, but dropped off at the extreme end of the property.
Being able to connect to the USB and whatever device you put on it (Thumb Drive, Hard Drive, Printer) requires that the wireless device you are uing support SAMBA. All Macs and all Microsoft Operating Systems support this function. What does not support this function directly are the Apple Touch, the Apple IPAD, and the Kindle Fire. The good news is that you can download a free app onto each of those devices which then allows them to connect to the local resource on your network. This is a great way to share documents and pictures!
Home Server was quite happy to connect to any device that it will support using either band. The requirement is that you either plug the server into one of the 5 ports on the back of the router or that the server you are using has wireless capability.
The guest network is a very nice feature and it works in such a way that you can isolate that network from your home network. You can also implement parental controls to limit what content can be accessed on either the Guest Network or on your own network.
There are more security and other features in this unit than you can shake a stick at. I tested as many of them as I possibly could and had excellent results with all features. I did not run into a single issue with any of it. To keep this from becoming a book, I will simply say WOW!
As you can probably tell from the above, setup is extremely easy and takes less than 5 minutes from starting to unbox to having the system up and running. The user interface is well laid out and is very intuitive. You can be as simple or as complicated as you want to get with the configuration.
A final comment about the bandwidth that this unit supports. You need to keep in mind that no matter how fast and how much data a router can pass, it cannot make your Internet connection any bigger or any faster! So, if your Internet connection is capable of 10 gigabits per second and your router is capable of 800 gigabits per second guess what? The fastest connection you can get is 10 gigabits per second!! This also applies to streaming video if the source of the video is the Internet (think Amazon Prime Movies, Netflicks, etc.). However, if you have a home server with videos, a game server with games, a server that does backups, you are doing file transfers between computers, etc., you will have a lot more bandwidth to be able to do concurrent things!!
I would have to say that this is the best wireless router I have ever used and I would highly recommend it!
374 of 395 people found the following review helpful
on September 28, 2012
This router is based on Qualcomm Atheros chips inside, which in my book makes it a router to put on the top of your "look at list." The router replaces the Netgear WNDR3800 N600 Premium Edition router from Netgear's 2011-2012 line up. This Netgear WNDR4300 N750 Premium Edition is for the 2012-2013 line up and offers most of what the WNDR3800 did, minus the Clear Channel Selector feature in terms of features.
The router's network processor and the 2.4GHz radio are powered by the single 560MHz Atheros AR9344 chip which offers good mid-range performance. In the initial released firmware (v188.8.131.52) however, there are some issues in 2.4GHz throughput inconsistency, even in low interference environments. This should (hopefully) be addressed in future firmware releases by Netgear.
Range/signal strength at equal distances is a little weaker than last year's WNDR3800 in 2.4GHz, but is still on par with other routers for medium-sized homes. You will want this router to be vertical in its stand for best range performance. If you have a large home, I would upgrade to the WNDR4700 from Netgear or go with this router and pick up a dual-band range extender or two.
Like with just about all Netgear routers, do not keep the 2.4GHz channel selection on AUTO as the router never picks the best setting to use. You will want to set the channel to primarily be channel 1, 6 or 11. Nothing else!... any other channel setting just overlap with others causing signal, throughput and other performance issues.
The 5GHz radio in this router is brought to us by the Atheros AR9580 chip, which with a 3x3 dual-band wireless adapter gives a link rate of up to 450Mbps. Range as with just about all 5GHz signals is weaker compared to the 2.4GHz radio signal. However, signal strength is on-par with last year's WNDR3800, but does offer better throughput speeds than the WNDR3800 did whether using a 2x2 dual-band adapter as I do in my laptop (Intel Advanced-N 6205), or a full-on 3x3 dual-band adapter.
I was looking forward to this router, but to be honest with the initial firmware, I am let down. Would I say this is a bad router? No. Would I say right now that for a mid-range router for what is on the market to having this in my top 5 consideration list? Yes. As of 9/28/12 you can still get a WNDR3800. That I would go for, just do not install the v184.108.40.206 firmware on the WNDR3800 as it has bugs relating to 2.4GHz connections. You will want to upgrade to v220.127.116.11 for now on the WNDR3800, which works great.
My score for now on the WNDR4300: 3.5/5.
69 of 75 people found the following review helpful
on September 21, 2013
I purchased this router because my old D-Link router was causing staggering delays on our Netflix streaming and our internet surfing. I have a PS3 directly hooked up to the router, and we have cable internet from a cable modem hooked up to the router. I recently upgraded my cable modem and that helped, but it was too slow to function lately.
Next step, replace the router. This router is highly rated in tech magazines, and it's price is great considering the features it has and it's original retail price is twice as much.
Installation was a little annoying because you had to unplug and plug stuff back in a very specific order. But once I realized that the router takes an extra few minutes to completely power up, I was on my way.
I was on the internet in a few seconds, and using the Genie app that was easily linked to, I was able to customize my SSID and password easily. I have never had an easier router set up experience, and I've set up D-Links and Cisco routers before. I didn't have to deal with tabs and menus and all kinds of settings. I was able to connect wirelessly using my Toshiba laptop, my Macbook Air, my gf was able to connect using her older model Macbook, and both of our Android phones connected without a problem. Usually this required a lot of tweaking to find out what settings would work for all platforms. Not this time. Set up was a breeze.
On the plus side, my wireless internet is faster than ever. I don't experience any loss of speed or bandwidth between wired and wireless connection. In fact, I went from 25mbps wired/ 15 wireless to almost 29mbps on both. I also upgraded the ethernet cable between the cable modem and router to a gigabit cat6 cable, which definitely helps as I notice the cable modem is sending more internet bandwidth out to the router.
Aesthetically, it's a little big. But it's sleek and modern looking, without any plastic antennae sticking out. Plus, it has USB sharing connection to network a HD or a printer!
If you are considering an upgrade and are price conscious about it but don't want to settle for another crappy router that frustrates you with a day long set up, this router is the first and probably will be the last thing you try.
81 of 91 people found the following review helpful
Let me start by telling you that I love the user friendly approach that these routers follow! Setup is as easy as 1, 2, 3! Just follow the easy setup manual to connect the router properly, open a web browser on your computer, and you're done,really! That's it, you're done! It even gives you an automatic wi-fi password! The whole setup process takes from 5 to 10 minutes tops.
I have various devices working online, including two xbox 360's, one PS3, Wii, 2 DVR's, one netbook, two iphones and one Droid 2 Global running on this thing (wired and wireless)just to see how much it could take and I had not one hick-up during testing.
One feature I love about this router is that it let's you setup a temporary signal to share with visitors or like me, neighbors, you assign the time that you want to allow them to connect to your router, from 2 hours to as many months you'd like, after the assigned time, it will block the signal. Cool, huh?
You can also plug in an external hard drive straight into the router and share it with different computers around the house within the same network. I usually use this to stream videos, music and pictures to my PS3.
This is overall a great product and I highly recommend it.
26 of 28 people found the following review helpful
on February 9, 2014
I researched a new router very extensively. As a Comcast customer, I did not want to rent some outdated piece of junk from them for $7 a month, so did my research for routers that would work with their service.
Even though I had read some reviews that this router was having problems with dropping connections, I thought "It can't really be that bad." Trust me, it is!
I had this paired with a SB6120 Surfboard and from the first day it had problems. Connections were getting dropped all of the time. Sometimes several times a day, requiring hard resets of both modem and router, which would take 5-10 minutes each time to reestablish a connection. Sometimes it would take 2-3 resets to get a good wireless connection back. Anyone who occasionally works from home will understand how annoying these drops are. I have probably wasted hours of time in the past five months just to keep this piece of junk operational.
I initially thought that there was no way a new router and modem could be the problem so we had Comcast and line specialists out, and they all looked at the lines and connections. They removed a couple of unnecessary splitters in our house and cleaned up our signal until it was very stable. The problem of dropped connections still persisted...
I checked out this problem extensively myself too online and tried everything that has been suggested to fix it on the router : change the channel, make the IP static, upgrade (or downgrade) the firmware...nothing made a difference.
Finally I did some more careful testing and discovered that it really was just the Netgear router.
I've just replaced this piece of junk that I only had for five months with an Airport Express. AE is totally stable and working great.
Seriously, believe the other reviews, this router is terrible and Netgear should have had a recall. A total waste of money....
28 of 31 people found the following review helpful
on November 28, 2013
I excepted a lot more from this product when I bought it. Having owned Netgear (WGR614) for over 5 years, I was fully satisfied with the product and never once had a problem with a Netgear product until I decided to upgrade to a faster wireless router (N750).
Since day one, straight out of the box, I've been experiencing wireless drop outs 3-4 times per day, the wireless range and speed are not even half of what it is claimed to be - I noticed no difference between my (WGR614) wireless router and the (N750) in terms of speed and range.
I noticed some people on the reviews doing resets on their routers constantly to temporarily fix their issues but even a reset won't take any effect on mine, it remains the same terrible router.
I really thought I was getting an upgrade for spending a little extra on a wireless router but in my case it feels like more of a downgrade and a HUGE let down by the company I trusted and recommended to others. I am currently looking again for another wireless router and will definitely stay away from purchasing another Netgear product.
23 of 26 people found the following review helpful
on January 5, 2013
4 iPhones, 2 wii's, 1 play station, 2 iPad's, 3 laptops , and 1 roku box in our household. Many of them connected at the same time. Flawless performance so far.
25 of 30 people found the following review helpful
I'm not all into computers, so a lot of the technical aspects are beyond my general knowledge. I believe that a good router is one that you forget about. So, this is a good router, in my opinion. This is why:
1. Super easy to set up. Instructions were easy to follow and it did most everything on its own.
2. Connection to multiple devices: my printer, the Wii, three computers, my iPad, etc. was quick and easy.
3. I'm in a condo and have had no performance issues anywhere within the condo, or outside. I can actually get my wireless in my car out front.
4. Have had no "blips" in service.
5. Haven't had to unplug, wait 10 seconds, replug due to it not working. (This is probably the greatest thing about a router working)
6. Everything seems to be working very quickly. I've been able to stream from Netflix from several different computers, my iPad, and my Wii without any problems.
7. Even with power outages, which we get frequently in the NC mountains, it has not made me do anything to reset it. It just pops back on with the power and everything runs fine.
With all that said, I'm completely happy. I absolutely LOVE the fact that I don't have to think about the router.
12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
After having a ton of issues trying out my previous router, I was very pleasently surprised by this dual band machine. It was easy to set up (this day in age it shouldn't be hard) and I was getting connected in no time. The most important thing I noticed right off of the bat is the fact that my internet speed seemed to increase to the near maximum I pay my ISP for. If I used the ISP provided router I get at best 2/3 of the promised rate, with this router I get about 85-90%. Second, unlike a previous dual band router I had, this Netgear 4300 version thankfully did not have connectivity issues such as dropped connections (for no reason) or slowed speed. I was able to connect my wireless printer, desktop, and three laptops without any issue and all functioned simultaneously (i.e. internet browsing and printing) without a problem.
So, the MOST IMPORTANT reason I give this 5 stars is a good strong connection, that doesn't drop, nor does it slow down. For me, in a router, this is the most important thing, an this router does a 5 star job!!!
40 of 50 people found the following review helpful
on January 21, 2013
I recently tested the WNDR4300 along with three other routers: Netgear WNDR3700v2. WD My Net N900, and TPLink TL-WDR4300.
I was quite disappointed with the Netgear WNDR4300. I found the user interface to be incredibly sluggish and painful to work with. Granted it's not something you do everyday but still. It's full-featured and has some settings that I really appreciated like making it easy to use as an AP only. Since it often comes down to reliability and performance I thought I'd run some tests myself. Hopefully others will find this useful.
2.4Ghz wire performance was mediocre and 5.8 ghz was so poor and unreliable that I couldn't even complete my tests.
So here are my detailed results.
I used a my workstation as a jperf server and a macbook pro as a jperf client. I ran each test 4 times. The router was about 30ft from the macbook pro with some obstructions. Everything was kept constant for all tests. Each test was 240seconds, 8 streams, with a TCP Window Size of 1024. Here are the four routers and their average performances in Kbits/sec. I used the latest firmware available as of 1/12/2013:
Netgear WNDR3700V2 DD-WRT
Netgear WNDR4300 Stock
too many problems with 5.8ghz to test
TPLink TL-WDR4300 Stock
WD MyNet N900
As you can see the WD MyNet N900 has the best 2.4ghz performance of the bunch but the 5.8ghz performance is a letdown. I ended up using the TP-Link N750 Wireless Dual Band Gigabit Router (TL-WDR4300) as my home router. The price is great and although it doesn't have the best GUI the performance was tops.
* 802.11 g+n
* 20/40 auto
* auto channel
* QOS off
* 20/40 auto
* auto channel
* QOS off