Archive Home arrow Reviews: arrow Network arrow ASUS EA-N66U Wireless-N450 Ethernet Adapter
ASUS EA-N66U Wireless-N450 Ethernet Adapter E-mail
Reviews - Featured Reviews: Network
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

Ethernet Adapter Final Thoughts

When it comes to networking products looks tend to be somewhat of an afterthought, with the ASUS EA-N66 this simply isn't the case. I'm sure many of you will agree that first and foremost on your list of priorities when buying hardware is the price, next would be performance and then looks come last. After all you can easily hide it out of sight, so looks need not be so important.

If you haven't see the press releases then you might look at the ASUS EA-N66 and think "what is that?", since it doesn't fit the normal design brief. I myself am a sucker for good looking gear and I find the need to have things that fit into a certain scheme, whether it be a color scheme or purely a design scheme, I don't like things that don't fit in very well. The main quality I look for is performance, I always find myself looking for the best performance for the money I have available. When I can find looks and performance in one package then I don't hesitate, that's where reviews like this are handy.

ASUS EA-N66 Conclusion

Important: In this section I am going to write a brief five point summary on the following categories; Performance, Appearance, Construction, Functionality and Value. These views are my own and help me to give the ASUS EA-N66 Dual Band Wireless-N 3-in-1 Ethernet Adapter a rating out of 10. A high or low score does not necessarily mean that it is better or worse than a similar adapter that has been reviewed by another writer here at Benchmark Reviews, which may have got a higher or lower score. It is however a good indicator of whether the ASUS EA-N66 is good or not. I would strongly urge you to read the entire review, if you have not already, so that you can make an educated decision for yourself.

ASUS_EA-N66_Wireless-N450_Ethernet_Adapter_Light01.jpg

The performance of the ASUS EA-N66 Ethernet Adapter is very respectable indeed, coupled with the RT-N66U Wireless N900 router, wireless barriers need not be an issue any more. The TCP speeds were nowhere near as fast as the UDP speeds but since most of the functions that the EA-N66 will be serving (Gaming, Streaming Media, File transfer) rely on UDP this isn't such an issue. Even at a distance from the router the EA-N66 still managed to get 95.1Mb/s TCP and 232.9Mb/s UDP throughput in Ethernet Adapter mode, this is a real testament to the R&D that is going on over at ASUS HQ.

The ASUS EA-N66 appearance will score very highly. I have made my feelings about the EA-N66's looks patently obvious throughout this review, even the web based utility looks awesome, as I'm sure you will agree. It is certainly a one of a kind work of art and will set a new 'bar' for competing manufacturers to aim for.

The construction of the ASUS EA-N66 is very good indeed. The unit is much smaller and lighter than one would guess from the pictures, and the internal antenna means there is less things that can be broken off. It has been built very well with no obvious screws holding it together, and the materials used feel very durable. I felt a little bit let down that the supplied Ethernet cable wasn't compatible with Gigabit speeds as advertised, but I was lucky enough to have a few Ethernet cables spare. This won't be the case for everyone and your network speeds can and will suffer because of it.

Functionality of the ASUS EA-N66 will get top marks. There are many different scenarios in which the ASUS EA-N66 can be used. The obvious ones are to make your wired home entertainment devices wireless (Consoles, TiVo, Smart HDTV etc.) in the default Ethernet adapter mode, or you could buy an inexpensive Gigabit switch and use the EA-N66 as an Access Point and save a lot of money over buying a high end router. Maybe you have a good wireless router already but the range isn't that great, simply set the EA-N66 to Repeater mode and enjoy the extended range. If only it could be powered by USB, then we would have a killer wireless solution for Laptops and Notebooks.

The ASUS EA-N66 is not yet available and pricing has not yet been decided. I estimate ASUS will price the EA-N66 Dual Band Wireless N450 3-in-1 Ethernet Adapter around the $60 mark, that would represent a nice price/performance sweet spot. At that price I could see these selling very well indeed.

If you are looking for a stylish, feature packed and great performing home networking solution, then you should definitely consider the ASUS EA-N66 as one to put on the shortlist, when it becomes avaiable.

Pros:Benchmark Reviews Golden Tachometer Award

+ Excellent performance
+ Very unique stylish looks
+ Very high UDP throughput
+ Range is excellent
+ Dual-Band (2.4/5GHz) operation
+ Very good build quality
+ Easy effortless setup
+ Intuitive and well laid out menus
+ Gigabit Ethernet port (with own status/activity LED's)
+ Lightweight but sturdy construction
+ Wall mountable
+ 3-in-1 Networking solution

Cons:

- TCP speeds much slower than UDP
- Price and availability unconfirmed
- Supplied Ethernet cable was not compatable with Gigabit speeds as advertised

Ratings:

  • Performance: 9.00
  • Appearance: 10.00
  • Construction: 9.00
  • Functionality: 9.00
  • Value: Not Rated

Final Score: 9.25 out of 10.

Excellence Achievement: Benchmark Reviews Golden Tachometer Award.

Benchmark Reviews invites you to leave constructive feedback below, or ask questions in our Discussion Forum.


Related Articles:


 

Comments 

 
# LEDNick Diakos 2012-04-03 17:13
Is the LED Light able to be turned off?
Report Comment
 
 
# 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.
Report Comment
 
 
# RE: RE: LEDMikael 2012-09-22 02:19
Bull#, you cannot change their brightness in the Adminstration section of the GUI.
Report Comment
 
 
# 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.
Report Comment
 
 
# 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.
Report Comment
 
 
# 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.
Report Comment
 
 
# 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?
Report Comment
 
 
# 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.
Report Comment
 
 
# 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.
Report Comment
 
 
# 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.
Report Comment
 
 
# 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.
Report Comment
 
 
# 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.
Report Comment
 
 
# 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.
Report Comment
 
 
# 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.
Report Comment
 
 
# 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?!
Report Comment
 
 
# 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.
Report Comment
 
 
# releaseNick Diakos 2012-04-26 21:07
Any idea of a release date for this
Report Comment
 
 
# RE: releaseSteven Iglesias-Hearst 2012-04-28 06:55
Sorry Nick, this is still unknown.
Report Comment
 
 
# 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.
Report Comment
 
 
# 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.
Report Comment
 
 
# Picture inside!Daxy 2012-05-22 10:00
Could someone please send me a picture of inside of this device at

thank you guys!
Report Comment
 
 
# 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?
Report Comment
 
 
# RE: Will this piece of hardware work...Steven Iglesias-Hearst 2012-05-24 23:30
It will work the same as your current hardware.
Report Comment
 
 
# 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 ?
Report Comment
 
 
# 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.
Report Comment
 
 
# 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.
Report Comment
 
 
# RE: QuerySteven Iglesias-Hearst 2012-08-09 09:32
The ASUS EA-N66U does not support simultaneous 2.4GHz + 5GHz connections.
Report Comment
 
 
# 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?
Report Comment
 
 
# 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.
Report Comment
 
 
# 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.
Report Comment
 
 
# 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?
Report Comment
 
 
# 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.
Report Comment
 

Comments have been disabled by the administrator.

Search Benchmark Reviews
QNAP Network Storage Servers

Follow Benchmark Reviews on FacebookReceive Tweets from Benchmark Reviews on Twitter