MSI looks to add executive chic to a winning laptop formula
Buffalo Technology 54G Wireless USB2.0 Keychain Adapter
- Plug & Play, Easy install
- Drains battery life, large
A simple and effective way to add wireless access to your notebook
Price$ 79.00 (AUD)
Wireless internet connectivity has the potential to dramatically change both the way we work and also where we work, offering users the convenience relatively fast speeds at while on the move. While the vast majority of today's notebooks ship with wireless cards, some of the older models do not and here is where the Buffalo Keychain Adapter can help.
Small and white, roughly the size of a cigarette lighter, the Wireless Keychain Adapter is designed to be plugged into a USB port on your notebook, thus giving you the ability to access wireless 802.11 b/g networks in the area without having to purchase a separate wireless network card.
We plugged in the unit to our PC and in under a minute, the drivers and software proceeded to install themselves. In addition to the drivers, Buffalo Client Manager 2 was also installed. This little application is used to manage and connect to available wireless networks. There are three tabs on this application - Status, Survey and Profiles. The Status tab shows details of your current connection, while Survey displays the list of available wireless networks to connect to. The Profiles tab conveniently stores the connection and network settings for multiple networks, meaning you don't have to remember them. This is helpful especially if you often use the same networks, such as Work or Home.
We did think the device was on the larger side and protruded quite significantly from a notebook USB slot. Buffalo have helpfully included a USB cable which plugs into the unit, thus removing the need to plug it directly into the drive. In our tests, we could not detect any noticeable difference in data speeds between a regular network card and the Wireless Keychain adapter, and the while the speed decreased with increased range, it wasn't substandard by any means. Although it is USB, be warned that the unit will drain battery life from your notebook, especially after extended usage.
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