D-Link DIR-645 router review: Almost great

CNET editor Dong Ngo reviews the D-Link Amplifi Whole Home Router 1000 DIR-645.

The DIR-645 comes in a cylindrical shape that helps it not only look good but also have small footprint.
The DIR-645 comes in a cylindrical shape that helps it not only look good but also have small footprint. Josh Miller/CNET

D-Link's latest Amplifi Whole Home Router 1000 (model DIR-645) almost makes an excellent router.

For one, living up to the Whole Home notion, the router offers great Wi-Fi range, possibly the longest I've seen in a long time. Secondly, it provides a great set of features, including Gigabit Ethernet (great for a fast wired network), guest networking, parental control, QoS, support for IPv6, and a very easy-to-use yet comprehensive Web interface. And finally it won't break your bank, either, with a street price of just around $90.

Unfortunately, it also comes with one major shortcoming, according to my trials. When used in N-only mode, which allows the router to offer the best wireless performance at the expense of backward compatibility for legacy 802.11g and 802.11b clients, the router's Wi-Fi signal would disconnect after 6 or 7 hours of continued operation. When this happened, I had to turn it off and back on to get connected again.

While this doesn't seem to happen in mixed mode (where all clients, N and legacy, are supported), which is the router's default setting, this is a rather serious issue that keeps the router from getting the "excellent" rating. Hopefully this will be resolved with a firmware update. I tested the router with the latest firmware version 1.01.

To find out more about the DIR-645's features and performance, check out the full review.

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