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jamor Nov 14, 2012

Netgear Rangemax WNDR3700

At A Glance

Disraeli Gears

Dual 2.4GHz/5.0Hz radios; guest networks; DLNA media server; very good range; USB drive sharing.

Jammed Gears

Can't share a USB printer over the network; no BitTorrent client.

The winner, and still champeen!

It wasn’t much of a contest: Netgear’s WNDR3700 V1 retained its crown as our Best of the Best router with spectacular TCP through-put, a strong feature set, and an even stronger price/performance ratio. It’s the second-most expensive router we tested, but it’s worth every penny.

The WNDR3700’s 2.4GHz radio delivered the best performance at every client location except one (where it placed second), and its 5GHz radio finished first in six of our seven locations. D-Link’s DIR-855 firmware is more customizable, but Netgear’s router offers several important features D-Link can’t match, including a DLNA-compliant media server, the ability to configure either radio as a wireless bridge/repeater, and NAS functionality that doesn’t require a client-side utility.


Supremely fast, feature-rich, and relatively inexpensive: There's little we don't like about Netgear's WNDR3700.

If your ISP subjects you to download limits and penalizes you for overages, you’ll appreciate the WNDR3700’s traffic meter. This tool measures both online time and download volume and can be configured to prevent you from exceeding either quota. Unfortunately, the meter measures in aggregate, so you can’t establish limits on a per-client basis. We also find it odd that Netgear doesn’t support printer sharing on the WNDR3700’s single USB port.

We suspect the primary reason the WNDR3700’s press-time street price was so low is because Netgear was clearing inventory to make way for the WNDR3700 V2. Netgear is promising to double the router’s memory, deliver a 50 percent performance boost on the 5GHz band, and provide full support for IPv6. We can’t wait.

Benchmarks

Netgear WNDR3700
Linksys WRT600N
Kitchen, 20 feet (Mb/s)
85.9 116.0
Bedroom, 60 feet (Mb/s)
26.8
21.5
Media Room, 35 feet (Mb/s) 63.9 26.7
Enclosed Patio, 38 feet (Mb/s) 48.4
86.0
Outdoors A, 90 feet (Mb/s)
22.7
0.2
Outdoors B, 85 feet (Mb/s)
5.0 0.4

Best scores are bolded. TCP throughput measured using IPerf. N/C indicates no connection at that location. Read more about our testing methodology at http://bit.ly/16w27O.

THE VERDICT

Netgear Rangemax WNDR3700

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