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Linksys E3200 router review: A formidable contender

CNET Editor Dong Ngo reviews Cisco's Linksys E3200 High Performance Dual-Band N Router.

The Linksys E3200's Connect software now includes a handy Speed Test tool.
The Linksys E3200's Connect software now includes a handy Speed Test tool. Dong Ngo/CNET

A short while ago, I gave the Editors' Choice Award to the Asus RT-N56U. At the time I thought, "It's gonna be some time before there's another router that comes close." I was wrong.

Cisco's new Linksys E3200 High Performance Dual-Band N Router, which we just reviewed, makes a great contender as another excellent, true dual-band router that won't break your bank. As a matter of fact, if it were just a little cheaper and offered better built-in network storage performance, it would get an Editors' Choice Award as well.

Released at the same time as the rest of the members in the new Linksys E series, including the supercompact and affordable E1500, the E3200 is a stylish, high-end, well-rounded router. It's really good looking, and offers fast wireless speed and long range.

Like the rest in the E series, it comes with Cisco Connect software that make setting up and network management a no-brainer for even the most technologically challenged users. On the other hand, it doesn't leave savvy users in the cold, either. They can just skip the software and use its robust and responsive Web interface to take advantage of its advanced features.

At a street price of around $140-$150, the E3200 is about $10-$20 more expensive than the equally eye-catching Asus RT-N56U. Unfortunately, its built-in network storage feature, which allows people to share data off an external hard drive plugged into its USB port, doesn't perform as well as that of the Asus.

To find out why you'd still want to have one for yourself, however, check out the full review here.