Oct 09 2015

News - NETGEAR & Best Buy Release AC1900 Router + Extender Bundle

I must admit that when I first saw the announcement of the Nighthawk DST AC1900 DST & DST Adapter bundle I thought it was just a repackaged R7000 and EX6100. Which while convenient, really doesn’t offer much new to the mix. Fortunately, before writing that up I checked with NETGEAR and they let me know that it’s actually a R7000 + Wi-Fi extender with Gigabit powerline built-in to both components, providing the backhaul between extender and router. Which I think we all can agree is much more interesting!

It is a bit on the expensive side ($300) and only available at BestBuy, but since support and installation is included it just might be the perfect thing to get the less technical started.

Best Buy.

Oct 06 2015

News - Roku 4 Announced With 802.11AC and 4K Support

Rumors have been floating around for a couple weeks now, and it looks like all the ones I saw were correct with the Roku 4 supporting 4K content, 802.11AC, quad-core SoC, and somewhat surprisingly the return of optical audio out (TOSLINK) -- probably for the soundbar user. It is a welcome update both for those holding out for updated hardware, and current owners who should see the Roku OS 7 update sometime in October. I was hoping for a $99 price point, but alas, that was not to be; with the updated streaming available for pre-order for $129.

Full PR after the click.

Oct 03 2015

News - SiliconDust Opens HDHomeRun DVR Early Access

If you've been kicking yourself for missing out on the HDHomeRun DVR funding campaign, and the associated early builds of the software. SiliconDust is now allow you to opt-in to get access and a year of service for the same price as the original Kickstarter.


Oct 01 2015

News - NETGEAR Announces Quad-core A15 ReadyNAS 212/214

We recently reviewed NETGEAR’s ReadyNAS 202 finding it an excellent option for consumer NAS. Building on the device’s solid performance, NETGEAR announced the ReadyNAS 212 & 214 today bumping the spec from dual to a quad-core 1.4GHz ARM Cortex A15 for the 2XX family. The general feature set hasn’t changed; still offering all of the great backup and cloud goodness as before. The increased CPU performance has been put to good use in the ReadyNAS 21X, with software based (single stream 1080p->480p) transcoding now available via Plex, penalty free real-time A/V scanning, and the full potential of dual Gigabit link aggregation in the box. I for one am very interested in seeing how these $329/$499 NAS devices perform in real conditions, especially with NETGEAR making link aggregation much more approachable to the average consumer with today’s other product announcement.

Full PR after the click.

Oct 01 2015

News - NETGEAR Announces Tri-band AC5300 X8 R8500 802.11AC Wi-Fi Router

Today NETGEAR announced the latest addition to their high-end consumer 802.11AC Wi-Fi routers; the $400 Nighthawk X8 R8500. Like other “AC5300” routers the X8 is based on a 1.4GHz SoC with tri-band Wave2 sporting one “1000Mbps” 2.4GHz and two “2166Mbps” 5GHz radios. Unlike previous generations of 802.11AC routers the X8 has two features which make it very unique compared to the competition; powered antennas and six Gigabit Ethernet ports. With two of the wired ports supporting link aggregation (including 802.3ad) it pairs nicely with NETGEAR’s other product announcement.

Unfortunately MU-MIMO is not yet enabled on the device, but the hardware is ready -- just waiting on firmware which should ship by end-of-year. While this is interesting, to take full advantage clients will need to be MU-MIMO enabled as well so it isn’t nearly as exciting as the active antennas which take signal amplification away from the noisy mainboard and places it where it can make the most difference to every wireless client, as well as cutting down on the number of physical antennas hanging off the router. According to NETGEAR’s PR, this has incredible benefit (see above), and I’m inclined to agree, but of course it’s something that we’ll want to test out before repeating it too loudly.

Full PR after the click.

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