Wireless broadband routers are coming thick and fast, and differentiating between one model and another is becoming increasingly harder as far as the average buyer is concerned.
After all, if it gets the data from the Internet to your computer and back again in a reliable and speedy manner from anywhere in the house that’s pretty much all you can ask of it, right? Well, yes, and that’s why Buffalo has gone for the speed and range jugular with the release of the new AirStation Wireless-N Nfiniti Router or WZR2-G300N to be precise.
Appreciating that more and more people are relying upon their router to literally be the hub and heart of the family multimedia system, streaming video and audio around the home and bringing on-line gaming into even the smallest room (not that we have ever played World of Warcraft whilst on the loo, oh lawdy no).
To this end Buffalo has developed a router which promises to deliver data up to 12 times faster than "standard" 802.11g wireless devices while at the same time getting that signal up to 4 times further.
Bold claims, but our testing here tends to suggest that they are justified to a degree. Certainly the Nfiniti proved to be one of the fastest routers we have seen, easily sustaining 90Mbps. Of course this is somewhat short of the "up to 300Mbps" claim on the box, but then the real world has a habit of breaking these lab condition perfect specs.
After all, have you ever got anywhere near the claimed fuel economy figures for your car unless you happen to be a professional test driver cruising around a test track at a constant 52mph? The range was equally impressive, covering every nook and cranny of our rambling offices, including many of the Wi-Fi shadow spaces that other routers have been unable to reach.
HD video streams were handled with ease, as were our online gaming sessions. Talking of which, we were delighted to discover that the WZR2-G300N proved an absolute doddle to get working with a Nintendo DS Wi-Fi connection, seamless just about sums it up perfectly in fact.
Seamless and easy applies to the overall set-up of this router, and that includes security thanks to the wonderful Air-Station One-Touch Secure System (AOSS) that Buffalo have designed to make securing your network a one button press process. If you want detail, then the router supports WPS, WPA2, WPA (TKIP/AES) and 128/64-bit WEP security as well as coming with a NAT/SPI firewall and intrusion detector.
Overall setup is a breeze, and the web browser configuration as good as any other to be honest, with full support for Vista users.
Darn it, the thing even manages to look good in a somewhat admittedly geeky "I do what I say on the box" kind of a way. Measuring just 152 x 150 x 33mm it is no giant, and can be positioned horizontally for tight spaces without losing signal range as the three antenna setup is highly adjustable.
Users of the previous Nfiniti model (WZR-G300N) should consider upgrading as this really is a much better, much faster and much further reaching device than before.
Anyone else looking to buy a broadband wireless router for the first time would do well to consider the all new Nfiniti, as it provides punchy performance coupled with ease of use at a sensible price.