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WD My Net N900 HD Dual-Band Router Reviewed

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My Net N900 HD Dual-Band Router
At a glance
ProductWestern Digital WDBWVK0000NSL-HESN My Net N900 HD Dual-Band Router   [Website]
SummaryUbicom-based "N900" router with Atheros radios, seven Gigabit LAN ports, USB printer and file sharing.
Pros- High routing throughput
- Produced the highest wireless throughput seen yet
- 20+ MB/s NTFS filecopy write/read
Cons- Better wireless throughput uplink vs. down

Typical Price: $69  Compare Prices  Check Amazon

Overview

Updated 10/15/2012 - Added link to 5 GHz retest and updated related commentary
WD has discontinued its networking product line as of early 2014.

WD has bravely entered the highly competitive consumer router arena, with its four-member My Net HD Dual-Band router family. WD sent the penultimate member of the new lineup, the N900, in for review, so let's get started.

WD My Net HD Dual-Band router lineup

One of the N900's key competitive differentiations is the seven switched Gigabit Ethernet ports arrayed across its rather broad rear panel as shown in the graphic below. Note too, the dual USB 2.0 ports for storage and printer sharing. The latter, however, requires installation of Windows-only WD Print Share software.

My Net N900 rear panel

My Net N900 rear panel

The front panel contains a WPS button and handy status/activity LEDs.

My Net N900 front panel

My Net N900 front panel

Inside

I covered the internals of the the N900 in this Inside Story article, which I've updated with corrected component information. I also took the RF shields off after testing and snapped the photo below, which clearly shows a Ubicom IP8260U processor.

WD My Net N900 inside

WD My Net N900 inside

For quick reference, here is the updated table, with comparison to the similarly-designed D-Link DIR-857.

  WD My Net N900 DIR-857
CPU Ubicom IP8260U Ubicom IP8000AU
Switch Atheros AR8327N (x2) Atheros AR8327N
RAM 256 MB 512 MB
Flash 16 MB 16 MB
2.4 GHz Radio - Atheros AR9381 single-band
3-stream 11n SoC
- 6976691A205 (manufacturer unknown)
2.4 GHz power amps (x3)
- Atheros AR9380 dual-band 3-stream 11n SoC
- Unidentified manf. power amp (x3)
5 GHz radio - Atheros AR9380 dual-band
3-stream 11n SoC
- Skyworks/SiGe SE2595L
Dual Band 802.11n Wireless LAN Front End (x3)
- Atheros AR9380 dual-band 3-stream 11n SoC
- Unidentified manf. power amp (x3)
Table 1: WD My Net N900 component summary



Related Items:

WD My Net N900 5 GHz Retest
CES 2012: Belkin Joins The N900 Club
SmallNetBuilder Giveaway Results: WD My Net N900
ASUS RT-N66U and Linksys EA4500 / EA4200v2 Wireless Retest
WD My Net AC1300 HD Dual-Band Router Reviewed

User reviews

Average user rating from: 3 user(s)

NOTE! Please post product reviews from actual experience only.
Questions, review comments and opinions about products not based on actual use will not be published.

User Rating    [Back to Top]
Overall: 
 
3.9 Features :
 
4.0 Performance :
 
3.7 Reliability :
 
4.0
 
Ratings (the higher the better)
Features*
 
Performance*
 
Reliability*
 
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A capable first effort from WD

Overall rating: 
 
4.3
Features:
 
4.0
Performance:
 
5.0
Reliability:
 
4.0
Reviewed by Michael Streeter
November 06, 2012
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I have been using this router for over a month and during that whole time it has been reliable with solid performance.
I replaced an Asus RT-N56U, mainly because i needed the 7 Gigabit ethernet ports and did not want to clutter the already crowded cabinet with an additional switch.
In terms of outright performance, there has been no noticable difference between the Asus and the WD routers.

I use the router with wired Desktop PC, Seimmens VOIP phone, XBox360, PS3, Synology NAS & Mac-Mini as a HTPC, plus multiple wireless clients including several laptops, tablets and Phones in in apple, android and WP7 flavour and they all work without a hitch.

One thing i've noticed is that it will not use 40Mhz channel spacing on 2.4Ghz whereas the Asus would (and subsequently swamp the Apple bluetooth wireless keyboard and mouse).

There is a fan on the underside of the router and in normal use the fan never runs however it will occasionally start with a heavy download session. The fan is pretty quiet and unobtrusive.

On the negative side, the GUI and configuration options are limited so if you like to tweak there's not many options there.

Overall, I am very happy with the WD My Net 900.

 

Outstanding gigabit LAN throughput plus fast/reliable wifi performance

Overall rating: 
 
5.0
Features:
 
5.0
Performance:
 
5.0
Reliability:
 
5.0
Reviewed by Bob G
October 18, 2012
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Since mid-August (firmware v1.04.08), the WD N900 has performed brilliantly fast as our household router using all 7 built-in gigabit LAN ports simultaneously. Even when using just one device, the router throughput is far more responsive than was the case with the Linksys v4200b that we replaced. Our newly constructed home was spec'd and built for gigabit LAN with CAT6 cable, connectors, and patch panels throughout. Tim's measured simultaneous LAN routing performance of the WD N900 complements the investment we already made for gigabit infrastructure.

WiFi performance has been faultless for 2 months now, not a single drop-out or noticeable speed throttling problem. We did set the FastTrack Plus QOS uplink speed to "9999999" is Tim did, and we have not changed it from that setting even with subsequent firmware updates. Anecdotally, the WD N900's hardware acceleration does seem to provide a noticeable speed boost when using WiFi as seen on website page-loading.

We are completely satisfied with our WD N900 and the value it provides, first for outstanding gigabit LAN throughput and for fast/reliable wifi performance.

 

Sending it back

Overall rating: 
 
2.3
Features:
 
3.0
Performance:
 
1.0
Reliability:
 
3.0
Reviewed by Ron
July 16, 2012
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Router was easy to setup, range did no seem much better than my 10 year old WRT54G.
I liked the simple. easy to get around interface, and the extra ports on the back, but when I was downloading torrents they were taking weeks instead of minutes.
At first I thiought they might be going slow because my wife was watching youtube, but when I checked the next morning after 8 hours of no-one using the internet they were still at .5 to 1.5 % done.
I turned off the QoS feature, the router rebooted, and my torrents were all downloaded before lunch.
The QoS plus was the primary reason I purchased this router. I contacted WD support and they said they cannot change the priority of torrent downloads from the default low setting.Low would be fine IF it would let it use the entire bandwidth with no other client activity but that is not the case with the one I received.

 
 

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