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Features

The WES610N functions only as a wireless bridge, not an AP and not a repeater. So the feature set is pretty simple:

  • Static and dynamic IP for bridge IP
  • WEP, WPA / WPA2 Personal wireless security
  • Wi-Fi Protected Setup (WPS) support, pushbutton and PIN
  • Wireless Network Site survey
  • WMM parameter manual adjustment with presets
  • 100 / 50 / 25 / 12% transmit power adjust

Missing features

  • HTTPs admin access
  • Can't dim or shut off LEDs
  • Enterprise (RADIUS) wireless security

The gallery has most of the WES610N's admin screens, so I won't repeat all that information here.

Figure 7 is a shot of one of the admin screens that shows a look and feel in line with other Cisco / Linksys products.

WES610N Basic Setup screen
Figure 7: WES610N Basic Setup screen

Performance

I basically used the same approach as my normal wireless test process. But since I'm testing a bridge and not a router, I had to choose a router to partner with. I figured the original revision NETGEAR WNDR3700 running V1.0.4.55NA firmware that I use as my house router would work just dandy.

I first moved the router to the same desktop location in my office where I usually place routers under test and connected the WES610N to the Ethernet port of my new Lenovo x220i.

I then walked the bridge to the four test locations I now use for 20 and 40 MHz bandwidth mode tests in each band with the WNDR3700 set for Channel 1 in 2.4 GHz and Channel 36 in 5 GHz. The WES610N was running 1.0.04 build 186 firmware, the only rev available. I used a WPA2 / AES secured link for all tests.

Figure 8 shows the average throughput of all eight benchmark tests. The general observations are:

  • Downlink speeds tend to be higher than uplink
  • 2.4 and 5 GHz results are similar
  • There isn't much advantage to using 40 MHz bandwidth mode

As with most 11n products, I wasn't able to connect in Location F in 5 GHz using either a 20 or 40 MHz channel. I had no problem connecting or running tests in either bandwidth mode in the 2.4 GHz band.

WES610N wireless benchmark summary
Figure 8: WES610N wireless benchmark summary

Figure 9 shows the WET610N's performance summary. Even though it was tested with a different router (a Linksys WRT400N) the same general conclusions as above can be drawn.

WET610N wireless benchmark summary
Figure 9: WET610N wireless benchmark summary

Figure 10 shows a composite of the actual IxChariot test results running downlink in 2.4 GHz with 20 MHz channel bandwidth. Like the WET610N, throughput variation is pretty low. I did notice high throughput variation running uplink in 40 MHz bandwidth mode in Location F. This was consistent over multiple test runs.

Running simultaneous up and downlink tests showed gains in total throughput between 10 to 20 Mbps among the various modes.

Cisco WES610N IxChariot summary - 2.4 GHz band, 20 MHz bandwidth, downlink
Figure 10: Cisco WES610N IxChariot summary - 2.4 GHz band, 20 MHz bandwidth, downlink

If you want to see the rest of the plots, use the links below.

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