is the third-generation Wi-Fi standard for wireless home networking. 802.11n equipment is backward compatible with older 802.11g
gear, and it supports much faster wireless connections over longer distances.
So-called Wireless N or Draft N routers available today are based on a preliminary version of the 802.11n industry specification. They are not guaranteed to fully interoperate with future 802.11n products.
All products listed in this category feature three MIMO radios and antennas that are the key feature of Wireless N routers, plus four-port 10/100 Ethernet switches for wired connections.
Introduced in 2006, the N1 (F5D8231-4) improves on Belkin's earlier pre-N wireless broadband router (the F5D8320-4). The Belkin N1 supports 300 Mbps maximum network bandwidth per the Draft N standard and a range up to 1,400 feet (450 m) using its 3 built-in antennas. Belkin supplies its limited lifetime warranty for the N1. They also offer matching 802.11n-capable network adapters (necessary to achieve the router's full speed and range).
The WRT300N is one of several Linksys/Cisco draft-N standard wireless routers using 802.11n technology. Supporting three MIMO
antennas and radios, it offers higher performance and greater range than the Linksys WRT150, for example, which features only 2 radios. Be prepared to tweak a few network settings out of the box; some report suffering dropped connections and technical difficulty in configuring this product to work with older 802.11b/g equipment. Cisco Systems supplies a limited 3-year warranty with the WRT300N.
TRENDnet may be a lesser known name in home networking, but the TEW-631BRP matches up well with the competition. TRENDnet tests this draft N router with Windows, Linux and Mac OS and supplies its 3-year warranty. Some reviewers have noted the TEW-631BRP maintains a strong wireless signal (important to avoid "dead spots" in homes) and runs reliably. This product also supports a switch that allows you to turn off the wireless radios when not using any Wi-Fi connections; it is a nice security feature many other routers don't support. Adjustable antennas and an attractive blue case round out the unit.
Like other wireless routers in this category, the WNR834B boasts Multi-In, Multi-Out (MIMO) antenna technology to improve speed and range. Naturally, you get maximum performance when using matching pre-N wireless adapters with this router, up to 270 Mbps according to Netgear. The WNR834B also includes built-in Quality of Service (QoS) and a 1-year warranty.
Buffalo can boast of an especially easy setup process for this router thanks to the AirStation One-Touch Secure System (AOSS) technology. Utilizing a physical button on the router, AOSS creates a default network configuration with just a few clicks. This router also is competitive in other areas including signal strength and security. The product may be more difficult to find than others in this category, however, due to ongoing legal proceeedings between Buffalo and another organization. Buffalo supplies its 2-year warranty for the WZR2-G300N.
6. D-Link RangeBooster N 650 RouterThis D-Link product was one of the early models of draft N wireless routers but has since been discontinued. Consequently, it may prove to be incompatible with the final 802.11n standard. This router advertised full support for up to 300 Mbps bandwidth utilizing the three Wi-Fi radios and detachable antennas. It also contains standard security features including WPA2 encryption and SPI firewall. contains Quality of Service (QoS) technology for improved VoIP support. Models sold in the U.S. and Canada included a 1-year warranty.