CNET First Look
Netgear R6100 Wi-Fi router is just too easy to use!CNET editor Dong Ngo was totally impressed by how revolutionarily Netgear's designed the network cable that goes with its latest and affordable R6100 802.11ac Wi-Fi router
Hi guys, Dong Ngo here. And this is the brand new R6100 Wi-Fi router from Netgear. As you can see, it's like the mini version of this R6300 right here. Now mini both in physical size and cost. This one here costs you about $99, almost half the price of this one. The question is, do you get what you pay for? The answer is yes and no. Now, let's start with the yes. First of all, this is an 802.11ac or ac, for short, router, the high end. It's also very easy to use. Take a look here. There's a label right here that showed the preset of Wireless Setting; that's all you need to use it. Well, you can see that they actually put on top of the plastic right here that can go off, and you know what? Off it goes. But guess what? There's another one on the bottom right here, exactly the same. And that means is you have to plug this one into power and connect this Internet port right here or WAN port to an Internet source such a cable modem using a network cable, and you are done. In fact, I find this one a little bit too easy to use because the cable itself right here is also included, and it's no normal cable. This is very special because it has two ends. That's right. And each end has a label by itself. They can be read from both sides. Now this end says, "Plug into your router," and this end here says, "Plug into your modem." Now you know exactly which end goes into which. Now, if you want to further customize this router, it can do that too quite conveniently via its WAP interface or mobile apps. And finally my testing, it offers a very decent performance, too. That said, let's move on to what we don't get, and it's quite huge. Now, first of all, this is a dual-stream router, meaning that it supports the two streams standard the Wi-Fi, offering up to only 867 megabit per second when used with ac clients. When used with n client, only 300 megabit per second. Other high-end router, through stream, can offer up to 1.3 gigabit per second or 455 megabit per second, respectively. The second, also the bigger disappointment is the like of gigabit Ethernet. The router comes with one WAN port and four LAN ports here, and all of them provide only 100 megabit per second speed. Now that is much slower than the router's Wi-Fi speed, and it makes your wide network very slow. That also means that if you have a very fast Internet at home, faster than 100 megabit per second, this is not a router for you. And finally, I find some of the router's feature kind of limited. For example, it had a QoS feature that can only manage the upstream and not the downstream. And also, the parental control feature, which is very easy to use, but cannot be managed through its WAP interface. You have to install in the application or you have to use the OpenDNS website for that. Now, in all, I like this one especially for how much it costs, but the like of gigabit Ethernet, it's probably the deal breaker for many people. For more on this router here, check out my full review at CNET.com. And if you decide to get one, well, feel free to play it with the network cable to plug whatever end to whatever port you want. You are allowed to do that by me; that's because I'm Dong Ngo. And this has been the first look at the R6100 Wi-Fi router from Netgear.