Review: Linksys WRT54G2 Wireless-G Router

This past Sunday, my 5 year old Belkin 802.11g router sent and received its last (data) packets (@ least in my house). After months of incredibly annoying, spotty “service,” I finally decided to pull the trigger on a new router (thanks Best Buy gift card!).

I considered a number of “N” and “G” options, consulted a couple of my more network-knowledgeable friends, and ultimately decided to forgo the benefits (increased range and max-capable speeds) of the yet-to-be-finalized “Draft N” routers in lieu of a more affordable (albeit older technology) B/G router.

The lucky winner – Linksys WRT54G2 – gets 4 out of 5 stars (@ the time of this posting) from reviewers on both Newegg and Amazon. So far, so good.

After four days of steady use (new desktop is hardwired; old desktop, laptop, Wii, and iPod touch connect via WiFi), I’ve yet to experience a single drop in ‘Net connection. This is great news and a major relief after having to physically unplug > replug the ol’ Belkin on an almost daily (if not multi-hourly) basis.

The Windows/OSX-compatible Linksys WRT54G2 is the “newest iteration” of Cisco’s famed (@ least among network g33ks) WRT54G router. While I was somewhat ambivalent about the internal antennae, I’m happy to report that the router works as well as one would expect, given its pedigree (so far at least).

Setup was a breeze: pop in the CD > follow the on-screen directions (i.e. plug in cables) > connect! As for signal strength, my laptop shows “excellent” signal everywhere in my apartment.

wrt54g2-backA nice benefit (as my friends pointed out) of the Linksys “WRT” series, are the routers’ ability to accept third-party firmware upgrades. As such, the WRT54G2 is “fully compatible” with DD-WRT (micro and micro+ editions) 3rd party firmware. (If I ever get around to trying new firmware, I’ll post results.)

linksys-energystarAnd finally, the router comes with an Energy Star compliant power adapter, making it more “environmentally-friendly” than not. Hey, every little bit helps. I’ll be sure to report back if anything changes.