Customer Review

76 of 79 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent quality at an affordable price, December 6, 2011
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This review is from: Linksys E2500 (N600) Advanced Simultaneous Dual-Band Wireless-N Router (Personal Computers)
I have been in technology for many, many years, and my expertise concerns Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) and telecommunications in general. I work remotely from my corporate office, and I use an IP phone to talk to my co-workers.

I have been dealing with the call quality issues that our customers experience mostly due to poor-quality routers for most of my career. I've put hands on just about SOHO device out there, and Linksys has always been a great product for the small office.

The best part of this line of Linksys devices is that Cisco bought the company but kept the easy-to-use software management in tact, only changing the brand name.

All of these Linksys devices for the past decade have generally built on the same competent administrative interface, which means that every time you upgrade, you have a familiar experience waiting for you.

One of the nicest features for me is the QoS settings. You can create policies by IP, port, protocol, and MAC address, and then assign a High Medium Low value to that device for Quality of Service.

In an office environment, if you had hard IP phones (like Polycom phones), you would want to put in the MAC of each phone and set it's QoS to High so that the router would automatically prioritize traffic from these devices over PCs and network storage, printers, etc.

For a home office, you would still want high priority for your phone, or if you were using a softphone on your computer you might give your laptop priority. Of course, assigning the priority to your laptop would mean that youtube would compete with your voice conversations, so in this case it might be better to establish a port and protocol QoS policy.

Many Amazon customers may not find this level of technical detail helpful when considering which device to purchase, but these are the things that matter to me when evaluating a router for my home office.

Linksys / Cisco do some great things with repeaters, making it easy to have this device as your central router and then smaller access points throughout your home to extend the wireless range. All that stuff works really well if you know enough to configure it.

One really cool thing Linksys / Cisco has been doing for the past few years is the guest access SSID for wireless. You can have a secured wireless name for your family, and then a guest access that has it's own password or no password at all for friends or neighbors stealing your wifi. But these separate SSIDs allow you to create policies restricting access so that a cunning neighbor cruising on your wifi wouldn't have access to your entire home network, and you don't have to give our your primary password to a friend who is staying the weekend.

This model of router goes a step further with simultaneous 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz transmissions. Since the 2.4 GHz spectrum is so crowded (cordless phones, all manny of wifi router, etc.) sometimes you are in an apartment location where everyone has wifi and all the available channels have been used, so you get poor performance from your device due to the crowded airwaves.

With the dual 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz transmissions, you get tons of air space, and you can even have certain devices on 2.4 while others are on 5 in your own home to reduce the chatter on a particular channel.

I have my laptop and iPad on 5 GHz, but the iPhones in the home are on 2.4 GHz. I don't honestly think I've improved anything - we're only talking about 10 devices all told - but it's nice that this is a feature. Plus certain devices that have older B/G antennas can't use the super-fast N antenna, but this router serves both devices equally.

In our home, we have two iPads, three iPhones, three Macbooks, one xbox 360, one Apple TV (2nd Gen), and one Samsung Smart TV (with wifi or LAN cable access).

I have all of these devices networked through the router, and just to be a jerk I decided to start video streaming on all of them at once, then try my VoIP phone (laptop) to see if quality was affected - no issues at all.

If you have the $190 for the high-end model with 6 antennas - get that one. I didn't want to spend the cash.
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Showing 1-2 of 2 posts in this discussion
Initial post: May 4, 2012 5:01:17 AM PDT
I'm using the E1000, but streaming Netflix to the smart Vizio TV 65 feet away, partially behind a concrete block wall, buffers sometimes and sometimes just won't play. Do you think the E2500 will improve this?

Thanks.

Posted on Jan 23, 2014 6:36:03 AM PST
Susan Dennis says:
I can't thank you enough for your level of detail. I have been struggling for months with my router and VoIP phone. I am going to purchase this router and tweak the settings you have suggested. Many thanks!
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