D-Link Australia DI-634M
- Not based on a standard, no SPI firewall, little security information in quick start manual
Fast, with better range than regular 802.11g or 108g devices.
Price$ 199.95 (AUD)
Though wireless technology has substantially changed computing in homes and offices, a lack of speed and limited range still plague emerging devices.
D-Link's DI-634M Router and DWL-G650M PC Card adaptor employ a technology called MIMO (Multiple-In, Multiple-Out) to substantially boost both signal strength and range. In essence, it makes clever use of the way radio waves bounce of walls, floors, furniture and other solid objects to boost the amount of data transferred each second. MIMO devices can broadcast from multiple antennae simultaneously. The data from each antenna then bounces off solid surfaces, reaching the final destination at slightly different times depending on the path taken by the signal. The other MIMO device then re-assembles the data into its original order at the other end.
MIMO is set to be a major part of the 802.11n standard when it's ratified in the next year or so, but most major networking companies have jumped the gun and are offering MIMO hardware now. Unfortunately, not waiting for a ratified standard means that there's no guarantee that one vendor's MIMO devices will work with another's - or if they'll work with ratified 802.11n products when they emerge.
D-Link's DI-634M silver casing offers four 10/100-base Ethernet ports, a WAN input, and LEDs on the front panel. A network diagram is also printed on the bottom to help troubleshoot. The Web-based configuration screen is straightforward, and it takes just a few minutes to set up common settings and get up and running. A basic network address translation (NAT) firewall is included, however there is no support for stateful packet inspection (SPI). The unit includes a standard suite of router functions, including a DHCP server along with VPN pass-through, filtering by MAC address IP or URL, and you can even block domains outright.
The packaging includes a quick installation guide however there is no bound manual; only a software version on the supplied CD-ROM. Installation is relatively straightforward though and we only needed extra information as we ran through the security setup. The only reference to setting up security in the quick installation guide is to inform the buyer that security is disabled by default. It's up to the user to consult the CDROM and find instructions on getting it running. Though it's the consumer's responsibility to secure their networks, we can't help but feel D-Link could have done better here.
While most MIMO devices on the market include three antennae, the D-Link model only includes two. Short-range performance is fantastic, and we were able to clock speeds of 41.2mbit/s at close range (2m), which dropped to 21.7mbit/s at 10m, and then degraded only slightly to 18.1mbit/s at 20m. Incredibly, the D-Link unit managed to not only sustain a signal at a range of 45m, but also keep data flowing at 15.2mbit/s for the duration of the 100MB test data packet.
The D-Link MIMO hardware combo offer straightforward setup, with boosted range and transfer speeds over conventional wireless networks. Just bear in mind that you'll need to stick to D-Link adaptors in order to get the most from the device.
Join the Good Gear Guide newsletter!
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Sony Bravia 2017 TVs: Full, in-depth review
- 2 Garmin Fenix 5 fitness tracker smartwatch review
- 3 LG 2017 OLED TV range full review: W7 Signature Wallpaper, G7, E7 and C7 UHD TVs
- 4 Tag Heuer Connected Smartwatch and Android Wear 2 review
- 5 Moto G5 Plus phone: full, in-depth review
Latest News Articles
- Wi-Fi Alliance introduces a certification program for new smart home construction
- Netgear expands its Orbi Wi-Fi system into a product family, adding two less-expensive models
- Chips coming by June will herald the next generation of Wi-Fi
- Plume's 'routerless' mesh network blankets your home in Wi-Fi with an army of tiny pods
- Netgear Nighthawk X10 AD7200 Smart WiFi Router goes all the way to 11
PCW Evaluation Team
The HP OfficeJet 250 Mobile Printer is a great device that fits perfectly into my fast paced and mobile lifestyle. My first impression of the printer itself was how incredibly compact and sleek the device was.
Wireless printing from my iPhone was also a handy feature, the whole experience was quick and seamless with no setup requirements - accessed through the default iOS printing menu options.
A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.
I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.
As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.
I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.
- Ring Video Doorbell review
- Alcatel A3 XL phone: Full, in-depth review
- Sony X9300E 2017 TV: Full, in-depth review
- Which flagship TV is best? Sony 4K HDR Bravia 2016 versus LG 4K HDR OLED 2016
- 10 Blu-ray movies / Best looking Blu-ray movies
- TPTest AnalystQLD
- CCTechnical Business AnalystNSW
- FTBusiness AnalystOther
- CCSecurity TesterNSW
- FTSenior Infrastructure Business AnalystVIC
- FTProject CoordinatorOther
- FTSAP ETL DeveloperOther
- FTAssurance specialist(Quality Assurance and Process Improvement)ACT
- FTSales Lead / Sales Executive - Enterprise IT Healthcare Perm - North RydeNSW
- CCProject SpecialistVIC
- FTMid-Sr level Product Manager / Project managerOther
- TPSenior Business Intelligence AnalystQLD
- CCData Architecture AnalystNSW
- FTHealthcare Integration Support/ Junior DBA - Brisbane BasedQLD
- CCApplication Architect - CloudVIC
- CCSenior Drupal DeveloperNSW
- FTTeam Leader Solution DeliveryQLD
- FTPresales Solution Architect - NetworksNSW
- FTSAP Test AnalystOther
- FTPHP DeveloperOther
- FTSenior DevOps ConsultantOther
- TPSenior Business Analyst | 12 month fixed term contractQLD
- CCDeveloper - ASP.Net - Sencha Ext JSVIC
- FTLead Enterprise ArchitectVIC
- FTSplunk Software Developer | 6mth ContractOther