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Wireless Security Throughput

Because link rates are supposed to be limited to 802.11g (54 Mbps) speeds (as per 802.11n) when using WEP and WPA/TKIP wireless security, I'm going to stop showing the IxChariot plots and just confirm whether products conform. I ran the checks and the WGA600N does indeed limit speeds to 11g rates which result in best case throughput in the low 20 Mbps range.

Wireless Performance - Competitive Comparison

We now finally come to the comparison you've been waiting for. Figure 8 shows a comparison using the 2.4 GHz band and 20 MHz mode for the WGA600 and WET610N.

Competitive comparison - 5 GHz, 40 MHz channel, downlink

Figure 8: Competitive comparison - 5 GHz, 40 MHz channel, downlink

Although the WGA6 has the highest best-case throughput, the WET6 is clearly better across all other test locations.

The throughput summary tables (Tables 1 and 2) will help you easily compare products across the four combinations of bands and modes tested. The charts were generated by going through each six-location comparison plots and putting an X in the product's box that had the highest throughput for each test. If throughput differed by 1 Mbps or less, then both products got an X.

Product 2.4GHz /20 2.4GHz / 40 5GHz / 20 5GHz / 40
A B C D E F A B C D E F A B C D E F A B C D E F
Linksys WGA600N X           X         X X X         X          
Linksys WET610N   X X X X X X X X X X       X X       X X X    
Table 1: Best downlink throughput summary

Adding up the checkmarks for each product shows that the WET610N is the clear overall winner for both down and uplink in the 2.4 GHz band. The products are more evenly matched in the 5 GHz band in 20 MHz bandwidth mode. But the WET610N again wins in 5 GHz 40 MHz bandwidth mode.

Product 2.4GHz /20 2.4GHz / 40 5GHz / 20 5GHz / 40
A B C D E F A B C D E F A B C D E F A B C D E F
Linksys WGA600N             X         X X X                    
Linksys WET610N X X X X X X   X X X X     X X X     X X X X    
Table 2: Best uplink throughput summary

Closing Thoughts

Given the WET610N's superior performance, Cisco is probably safe retiring the WGA600N when it comes time to trim the product line again. But before they do, they should add either an AP or "LAN Party gaming" mode to the WET6 (I vote for the latter).

Check out the slideshow See the slideshow for an admin interface tour

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