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Throughput vs. Path Loss

NOTE!NOTE: We don't refer to "range" in these plots, but instead use the more accurate "Path Loss". For an explanation, see the How we Test Wireless article.

Figure 11 was generated using the Compare Benchmarks tool of our Wireless Charts and shows up and downlink performance in 20 and 40 MHz channel modes in the 2.4 GHz band. It appears that Trendnet has tuned bandwidth utilization a bit differently than the DIR-655, since switching from the default 20 MHz bandwidth mode to Auto 20/40 yields almost a 2X boost in both up and downlink directions!

Throughput vs. Path Loss - 2.4 GHz
Click to enlarge image

Figure 11: Throughput vs. Path Loss

On the other hand, it also looks like Trendnet has decided to favor downlink bandwidth over uplink, since there is also a 2X difference in downlink vs. uplink throughput in both the 20 and Auto 20/40 modes.

Throughput vs. Path Loss - Competitive Comparison

For a product-to-product comparison, I chose the top four products from our Wireless Charts, omitting the Apple Airport Extreme because it doesn't allow 40 MHz bandwidth operation in 2.4 GHz. The products chosen were the Belkin N1 Vision, Linksys WRT600N, D-Link DIR-655 and D-Link DGL-4500.

Figure 12 shows a comparison of downlink performance in the 2.4 GHz band with the default 20 MHz channel width. There isn't a huge difference in performance, and no overall clear winner.

Throughput vs. Path Loss product comparison - Downlink, 20MHz channel

Figure 12: Throughput vs. Path Loss product comparison - Downlink, 20MHz channel

Figure 13 switches to uplink and shows a wider performance spread. The uplink throughput penalty imposed by the 633GR is clearly shown, with the other products breaking into two groups with higher signal levels (lower path loss).

Throughput vs. Path Loss product comparison - Uplink, 20MHz channel

Figure 21: Throughput vs. Path Loss product comparison - Uplink, 40MHz channel

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