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Wireless Reviews

Routing Performance

Routing performance for the WNDR4000 using our standard test method and latest released V1.0.0.60_8.0.49 firmware is summarized in Table 1. I've included the numbers for the WNDR3700v2 for comparison.

Test Description WNDR4000
Throughput - (Mbps)
WNDR3700v2
Throughput - (Mbps)
WAN - LAN
351
429
LAN - WAN
366
420
Total Simultaneous
423
469
Maximum Simultaneous Connections 4096 4096
Table 1: Routing throughput

Even though the 4000's throughput is lower than the 3700v2's, there is plenty to go around for most broadband connections. The 4000 doesn't raise the number of simultaneous connections, though. It's still at the 4096 that the 3700v2 also supports.

Figure 6 is a composite IxChariot plot of the three routing tests.

WNDR4000 routing throughput

Figure 6: WNDR4000 routing throughput

Use the Router Charts for more comparisons.

File Sharing Performance

I ran the same filecopy test that's part of our NAS benchmarks. I ran one test using the robocopy command built into Win 7 to write and read a single test folder containing a single non-compressed ripped DVD. The 4.35 GB (4,680,843,264 bytes) folder contains 38 files of various sizes ranging from 1 GB to 10 KB.

The NAS testbed system ran the transfer to an Iomega UltraMax Pro drive configured in RAID 0, which was attached to the WNDR3700 USB port. Tests were run with the Iomega volume formatted in NTFS and FAT32, with the results summarized in Table 2.

Test Description NTFS FAT32
Write 4.6 6.1
Read 4.3 6.9
Table 2: File Sharing Throughput (MB/s)

As is typical with router file sharers, you get a bit more performance using FAT vs. NTFS, if you can live with the 32 GB volume size limit.

Wireless Performance - 2.4 GHz

I used our standard open air test method to test the WNDR4000's wireless performance. As usual, I set the 2.4 GHz radio to Channel 1 and the 5 GHz radio to Channel 36 and using WPA2/AES encryption. All other wireless defaults were left in place.

The test client was an Intel Wi-Fi Link 5300 AGN mini-PCIe card in an Acer Aspire 1810T notebook running Win 7 Home Premium and Intel's Win 7 13.4.0.9 driver for the Intel card.

I first ran a Wi-Fi Protected Setup (WPS) test using the PIN mode supported by Win 7. It completed successfully on the first try, setting up a WPA2 / AES connection.

Figure 7 shows the IxChariot aggregate plot for all 2.4 GHz band downlink tests using 20 MHz channel width. Throughput variation is moderately low and generally free of large, long dropouts. But there was a big drop in performance when I moved to my two toughest test locations E and F.

What the plot doesn't show is that the connections in both locations were very tenuous and required multiple tries and a lot of laptop position jockeying to even get the tests to run. The test notebook never dropped the connection completely. But I had a very hard time getting a stable enough signal for the IxChariot tests to run.

NETGEAR WNDR4000 wireless throughput - 2.4 GHz, 20 MHz mode, downlink

Figure 7: NETGEAR WNDR4000 wireless throughput - 2.4 GHz, 20 MHz mode, downlink

It's odd that I was able to get a run in the weakest signal Location F, but not Location E. But I've seen this sometimes with other products, so it's not unheard of. If you click through the links below, you'll see this same pattern continue for other benchmarks.

Best case 2.4 GHz performance was 74 Mbps running downlink in 40 MHz bandwidth mode at Location A. I also measured a total 94 Mbps in 40 MHz mode running simultaneous up and downlink tests, again, at Location A.

Here are links to other IxChariot wireless test plots if you'd like to explore further:

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