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ASUS EA-N66U Wireless-N450 Ethernet Adapter E-mail
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Written by Steven Iglesias-Hearst   
Saturday, 24 March 2012
Table of Contents: Page Index
ASUS EA-N66U Wireless-N450 Ethernet Adapter
Closer Look: ASUS EA-N66 Adapter
Dual Band Wireless-N Detailed Features
Testing and Results
Final Thoughts and Conclusion

Testing & Results

Testing Methodology

To test the ASUS EA-N66 Ethernet Adapter we are using the Passmark Performance v7.0 Advanced Network Test. This test measures throughput between two clients (network adapters) connected to a router. In order for this test to work one PC must be set up as 'Client' and the other must be set up as the 'Server', each test is run five times with the highest and lowest result omitted and the remaining three results are averaged to give a final result.

At Benchmark Reviews we like to be comprehensive so you will find results here for the EA-N66 Ethernet Adapter connected in many different scenarios where the throughput can be measured. You can learn about good business ethernet connection adapters online and see which connection works best for you since we could not test them all. Scenarios include: WLAN to LAN; EA-N66 via Gigabit LAN port, WLAN to LAN using an ASUS USB-N53 wireless USB adapter (Wireless N 300Mb/s) and finally, WLAN to LAN using an ASUS USB-N53 wireless USB adapter with ASUS EA-N66 Ethernet adapter in wireless repeater mode. To eliminate any variables Test System 1 was always set to 'Server' and results were monitored and recorded on the 'Client' systems. The ASUS EA-N66 Ethernet adapter results will comprise of tests conducted downstairs and upstairs in a 3 bedroom semi detached house.

ASUS_RT-N56U_Passmark_Networking_Configuration.jpg

Test System 1

  • Motherboard: ASUS P8Z68-V Pro
  • Router: ASUS RT-N66U Dark Knight
  • Network: Intel 82579 Gigabit LAN
  • System Memory: 8GB Corsair LP CL9 1600MHz
  • Processor: Core i7 2600K @ 4.2GHz
  • Disk Drive 1: OCZ Vertex 2 60GB
  • Disk Drive 2: Seagate Barracuda 7200.12 1TB
  • Enclosure: Lancool PC-K63
  • PSU: Corsair HX750W 750 watt Modular
  • Monitor: HKC 22" Widescreen (1920x1080)
  • Operating System: Windows 7 Ultimate x64 (SP1)

Test System 2

  • Model: Acer Aspire T180-R97Z
  • Network 1: Marvel Yukon 88E8056 PCI-E Gigabit Ethernet controller
  • Network 2: ASUS EA-N66 3-in-1 Ethernet Adapter via Gigabit LAN port
  • Network 3: ASUS USB-N53 N300 USB Network Adapter
  • System Memory: 1GB DDR2
  • Processor: AMD Semperon 3500+
  • Disk Drive: 500GB Seagate Barracuda 7200 SATA
  • Operating System: Windows 7 SP1 (x86)

Results

For comparison I have included results obtained while testing at very close range.

Wireless_Throughput_Various.jpg

There is no doubt about it, the ASUS EA-N66 3-in-1 Ethernet Adapter is superior, but only really shines in the UDP tests. Since the EA-N66 is aimed at the home entertainment / gaming / enthusiast market this is exactly where we want to see it shine. The following excerpt should explain why; "UDP (User Datagram Protocol)... Common network applications that use UDP include: the Domain Name System (DNS), streaming media applications such as IPTV, Voice over IP (VoIP), Trivial File Transfer Protocol (TFTP), IP tunneling protocols and many online games" Source: Wikipedia.org. The slower rate of TCP will affect the Repeater and AP modes of the EA-N66 though.

ASUS EA-N66 Dual Band Wireless N450 Ethernet Adapter Throughput (5GHz Band)

Location ~> Downstairs Upstairs
Configuration: TCP UDP TCP UDP
EA-N66 via 1GB LAN
Ethernet Adapter mode
96.8Mb/s 361.1Mb/s 95.1Mb/s 232.9Mb/s
USB-N53 (Wireless N300)
EA-N66 in Repeater mode
77.6Mb/s 132.4Mb/s 55.8Mb/s 89.5Mb/s
USB-N53 (Wireless N300)
Direct to Router
82.8Mb/s 139.2Mb/s 64.7Mb/s 99.1Mb/s

Above we have the three scenarios described in the testing methodology. In its default configuration as an Ethernet adapter the EA-N66 literally smashes wireless barriers, even at long range. During the tests the EA-N66 peaked at 401Mb/s UDP downstairs and 280Mb/s UDP upstairs. Home internet connections are gradually getting faster (depending where you live), and those of you that pay a lot of money for a high speed connection will want networking hardware that is going to adequately service your needs.

With the EA-N66 Ethernet Adapter set to repeater mode the USB-N53 Wireless N300 adapter's scores were slightly lower as I had predicted. This is because the data has to hop from adapter to repeater to router which increases latency. The other problem (if you can call it a problem) is that the range of the RT-N66 Router was already powerful enough without needing a repeater, this mode would possibly be best paired with a router that doesn't have that sort of range and power.



 

Comments 

 
# LEDNick Diakos 2012-04-03 17:13
Is the LED Light able to be turned off?
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# RE: LEDSteven Iglesias-Hearst 2012-04-04 12:16
Yes buddy, the LED's can be turned off and their brightness can be adjusted in the Administration section of the GUI.
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# RE: RE: LEDMikael 2012-09-22 02:19
Bull#, you cannot change their brightness in the Adminstration section of the GUI.
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# Outrageous Claims?Tom Gordon 2012-04-16 21:28
The claim that "never before have all three functions been combined into one device" is absolutely ridiculous. Even the free motorola DSL modem/router I have has a reverse router/bridge options. All WRT cisco routers do, too - or ECB3500s... or just about any router worth it's salt. And some nice junk ones too. You should also measure the latency of the device under the load of many connections (ie torrent) because that's most likely where it will fail.
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# RE: Outrageous Claims?Steven Iglesias-Hearst 2012-04-17 10:16
But what you haven't quite grasped is the fact that this isn't a router. It's a wireless network adapter with repeater and access point functionality. You do have a point though and I should re-word that particular part of the introduction. The method of testing you described would be difficult to repeat with any proper accuracy due to the random nature of the way torrents download. My intentions during testing were to find maximum potential only.
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# RE: ASUS EA-N66U Wireless-N450 Ethernet AdapterTom Gordon 2012-04-17 11:28
Do you know what a router is? The wireless and ethernet are two separate interfaces - in order for packets to get from one to the other, when not being bridged by special hardware (which doesn't exist in this case, it's being emulated), are routed. If you CHECK THE SOURCE CODE (#dlcdnet.asus.com/pub/ASUS/wireless/EA-N66/GPL_EA_N66_1015c.zip) you should be able to find confirmation of this with some routing software, perhaps netfilter *looks* yep "linux-2.6.21.x\net\netfilter", tasked to do exactly these behaviors in order to provide these described functions. And at first glace there seems to be a lot a bloat in here for such a simple device - why would they need rules-based stateful packet inspection? How well does that handle tons of connections?

This is in fact a router... a crippled router (1 port, few features, weird software). A repeater doesn't need to route packets but for function as an AP it does and to Bridge or Route packets to an Ethernet Port it also does - making this in fact a router. There is no interface with any of the system's buses making this not a wireless adapter.
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# RE: RE: ASUS EA-N66U Wireless-N450 Ethernet AdapterOlin Coles 2012-04-17 11:37
Tom Gordon: you sound like you're an expert. Why don't you try writing a review, instead of constant criticism?
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# RE: RE: RE: ASUS EA-N66U Wireless-N450 Ethernet AdapterTom Gordon 2012-04-17 11:54
Olin Coles: Are you a critic, a salesman, or a consumer? Perhaps none of these? Please direct your patronizing remarks elsewhere.
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# RE: RE: RE: RE: ASUS EA-N66U Wireless-N450 Ethernet AdapterOlin Coles 2012-04-17 12:08
Tom Gordon: I am a professional reviewer and the owner of this website. I am also tired of seeing you troll our writers without the slightest bit of appreciation for their efforts.
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# RE: RE: RE: RE: RE: ASUS EA-N66U Wireless-N450 Ethernet AdapterTom Gordon 2012-04-17 12:34
Hello Olin. Thank you for responding, again. Surely the burden of appreciation falls upon the owner and the companies providing the hardware. That would seem to be the business model employed here.

I appreciate that you make a living selling these products and I commend you on your efforts. But "what you haven't quite grasped" is the fact that this isn't a troll but just a helpful community member that now seems to be getting harassed by both yourself and your reviewer.

Surely the fault is mine for feeding the trolls when I posted my very first comment.
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# RE: RE: RE: RE: RE: RE: ASUS EA-N66U Wireless-N450 Ethernet AdapterOlin Coles 2012-04-17 12:39
Tom: we don't sell a single thing, nor do we profit from these reviews. Each item is (usually) supplied by the manufacturer to my site, and then I send them to the reviewer. We then test and review the product on its own merit, report our findings, and publish the article to the public.
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# RE: RE: ASUS EA-N66U Wireless-N450 Ethernet AdapterSteven Iglesias-Hearst 2012-04-17 11:40
I think you may need to direct your aggression to ASUS. It is not advertised, described, specified or intended to be used as a router. In my eyes it is a standalone device that will also complement or enhance the the capabilities features of any given router and could also act as a cheaper alternative to upgrading. I thank you for your positive and intellectual input but there is no need to talk down to us.
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# RE: RE: RE: ASUS EA-N66U Wireless-N450 Ethernet AdapterTom Gordon 2012-04-17 12:13
None of my comments are intended to exhibit anger or superiority. They are only intended to correct factual errors made by the reviewer and/or manufacturer.

My personal opinion on the matter would stand that there are MANY other alternatives in the same price range that would meet the same needs. I would google "openwrt dual band". You may even save money with single radio. Who needs two radios for one computer? You can't use both. It's usually a feature reserved for routers needing compatibility with multiple devices; both 2.4 and 5ghz.
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# RE: RE: RE: RE: ASUS EA-N66U Wireless-N450 Ethernet AdapterSteven Iglesias-Hearst 2012-04-17 12:25
Who needs two radios for one computer?

I think we should leave that to the end user to decide. That's like saying who needs multiple cores, multitasking needs multiple options. ASUS are aiming to be at the forefront of consumer networking and I think they are making good efforts.

I can think of a few scenarios off the top of my head where two radios on one computer would be of great benefit but we would be here all day trying to find common ground in our arguments. Let's agree to disagree on many aspects and bring this to and end. Thank you.
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# RE: RE: RE: RE: RE: ASUS EA-N66U Wireless-N450 Ethernet AdapterTom Gordon 2012-04-17 12:40
Dual radios are nothing like dual cores and multitasking. You can only maintain one link at a time. Your comments alone are doing customers a huge disservice! What kind of site is this?!
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# RE: RE: ASUS EA-N66U Wireless-N450 Ethernet AdapterJeff Sutker 2012-05-03 07:55
This deice is NOT a router. A router, by definition, is a layer 3 device that transitions between IP networks. This device doesn't (and can't) do that. Whatever else you want to call it is fine - but it doesn't route.
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# releaseNick Diakos 2012-04-26 21:07
Any idea of a release date for this
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# RE: releaseSteven Iglesias-Hearst 2012-04-28 06:55
Sorry Nick, this is still unknown.
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# In Repeater ModeThan Lwin 2012-04-28 00:41
In repeater mode, can we set EA-N66 to connect the router in 5.0GHz band and broadcast (repeat) in 2.4GHz band? In this way, I can maximize its power since almost all clients in my net work use 2.4GHz band and leaving 5.0GHz band un-utilised.
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# In Repeater ModeThan Lwin 2012-04-28 01:03
Sorry, the information I provided is not complete. I am currently using ASUS RT-N66U Dark Knight Dual-Band Wireless-N900 Gigabit Router and 5.0GHz band is still left un-utilised. That means I am utilising only half of the router's capability and also 2.4GHz band is crowded.
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# Picture inside!Daxy 2012-05-22 10:00
Could someone please send me a picture of inside of this device at

thank you guys!
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# Will this piece of hardware work...Mutant 2012-05-24 17:59
If i set EA-N66 to ethernet adapter, will i be able to connect with ethernet cable and with switch let's say 5 computers... I currently use gigaset siemens 2,4GHz wireless repeaters, and when i use them as ethernet adapters, i can only use one computer to communicate over that wireless connection... When i put them in repeater mode then i can connect more computers.... is that the case with this adapter also?
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# RE: Will this piece of hardware work...Steven Iglesias-Hearst 2012-05-24 23:30
It will work the same as your current hardware.
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# Bad luck.Mutant 2012-05-25 02:22
So in ethernet mode i get to use only one computer per ea-n66?
Is that correct?
Is there a wireless n hardware that has a 450mbps speed and works as an wireless bridge instead of eth adapter ?
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# RE: Bad luck.Steven Iglesias-Hearst 2012-05-25 11:15
Correct. It only has one Ethernet port so it can only serve one device. Potentially you could plug it into a switch that could plug it into a switch that could serve multiple computers, but I cant confirm that. For you second question, I don't know off hand so I would suggest you ask google.
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# QueryAlan 2012-08-08 22:52
Hello, I am just wondering if connecting this product to a pc, can it connect to both 2.4 and 5ghz simulataneously from a netgear n600 moderm+router?
The reason for direct connection to pc is that I forgot to purchase a network adapter to place on the pci slot on the motherboard, and since I am the only one using the 5ghz channel and I haven't found any 5ghz adapters avaialable nearby,so I have chosen this product to use.
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# RE: QuerySteven Iglesias-Hearst 2012-08-09 09:32
The ASUS EA-N66U does not support simultaneous 2.4GHz + 5GHz connections.
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# Query 2Alan 2012-08-09 04:05
I am wondering if both this product and a GIGABYTE Bluetooth 4.0/WiFi Expansion Card were connected to the same PC, what kind of conflict to expect of?
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# RE: ASUS EA-N66U Wireless-N450 Ethernet AdapterSteven Iglesias-Hearst 2012-08-09 09:33
I would not expect any conflicts, you would just have several connection options.
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# RE: ASUS EA-N66U Wireless-N450 Ethernet AdapterKevin Beasley 2013-03-19 05:22
I purchased the RT-N66U router and the EA-N66 repeater. In the instructions for the EA-N66 it said that you could choose one of it's three functions through the GUI, how do you get to the GUI? I would like to get the best service from these products but I feel the instructions leave something to be desired. I have the EA-N66 located on a mantle about 40' away from the router. Can you help me get the best use of these products? Thank you for considering my request.
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# Help connecting ASUS EA-N66U to ps3Chris 2013-07-21 08:01
Hi guys since you all seem like experts. Can you guys help me connect this hing to my ps3. I was able to make my laptop connect to 5ghz but i cannot connect my ps3 at all. Any advice?
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# RE: Help connecting ASUS EA-N66U to ps3Olin Coles 2013-07-21 12:15
The PlayStation3 can only connect to wireless networks on the 2.4GHz radio frequency, not 5GHz.
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