The Internet is something that we introduce into our homes, sometimes for work but mostly to provide entertainment, much like we do a TV. But unlike our TV, we don't put much thought into getting the latest and greatest hardware to give us the best quality of service.
We tend to find the cheapest service provider, and with that often get the cheapest free router included. Why? because we tend to assume they all do the same thing.
We pretty much thought the same way - until NetGear got in touch. They wanted to open our eyes to the FullHD equivalent of the internet connection world and sent us a N750 Router. It might cost a little more than most would plan to spend on a router, but is the price worth it?…YES! why? well We will try our best to skip the overly technical talk and just explain what something like this can do for you.
Will having a new router speed up your internet? Technically no, that is down to your service provider package…but what it will do is boost everything else you can use your WIFI/Network with. For example…
If you're sending/streaming files to another computer in your home/workplace over a network or with OSX's AirDrop feature etc, the files will transfer much faster. Most modern routers work on a 2.4ghz speed so sending those big files become a pain, however this device lets you connect your computers to a 5ghz speed! a difference you really need to see to appreciate, but basically sharing larger projects won't be a workflow hinder that leaves you hating progress bars anymore.
Plus when leaving things such as phones, tablets etc on the 2.4ghz connection and using the 5ghz option just for your main computers, any possible interference is cut short. I personally don't know how common that is, but it would make sense to keep them on separate WIFI connections and free up some congestion with data sending/receiving.
But even more handy with the N750 is the USB port! What does this mean? It means you can plug an external hard drive or memory stick in and access that not only over the network, but also over the internet from another location…confused? Ok…imagine you have your uni work, family photos etc on a memory stick, but you don't want to carry it around because you tend to loose/break them? (I sure do) well, stick it into your N750 router, head off out and as long as you've set the router up properly (which is surprisingly easy) you'll be able to log into your memory stick from your uni's internet or even via your 3G connection on your smartphone…in short, meaning your all important files can always be with you, but without you having to actually carry them on your person. Oh the wonders of the web.
Oh and you can plug a printer into said USB port and turn it into a wireless printer, saving you a few extra quid forking out for a new wireless one because moving your laptop to the printer annoys you.
Add to that some other handy features such as Parental Control settings, 4 wired ethernet connection ports, great online and phone support, and a WIFI pairing button (meaning getting a wireless printer online is as simple as pressing a button to let them find each other) and you're winning!
The only minor flaw we found was that when connecting an external hard drive to the USB to use as a NAS drive, the Router seems to prefer a FAT formatted drive over an OSX Journaled partition and creates a FAT partition on the latter which caused an issue later for us with mounting permissions in OSX. But changing the format takes 2mins with OSX's Disk Utility app and it now runs like a dream in FAT/NAS harmony.
We personally can honestly never look back now…if its not a 5ghz router with USB options and all the other little handy options in the routers settings? We don't want to know anymore…much like when you see a FullHD movie for the first time, you acquire a whole new appreciation for quality.
Well done NetGear, you won us over.