Using the third generation of Airgo's True multiple-in, multiple-out (MIMO) chipset, Asus has laid claim to having the world's first 802.11g wireless router that is faster at transferring data than a wired 10/100 Ethernet network.
With a wireless speed rating of 240Mbps, the Asus WL-566gM can theoretically move data at up to 30MBps. A 100Mbps Ethernet connection tops out at 12.5MBps.
Theoretical speeds are never reached when transferring data across networks, mainly due to data overheads and encryption (we tested with WPA AES). To gauge the real-world Ethernet and wireless performance of the router, we connected two PCs to its 10/100 Ethernet ports and we also used a notebook equipped with an Asus WL-106gM wireless adapter.
Our 717MB test file was transferred over the 10/100 Ethernet ports at an average of 8.14MBps. With the wireless network, over a distance of 1.5m the same file averaged a data throughput of 6.18MBps.
This transfer rate did not beat the Ethernet connection for speed, but it's the fastest rate that we have moved data. At a 10m distance, the same file averaged 5.35MBps. However, the quick transfer rates of this router did not translate to faultless video streaming across a wireless network.
Set at 240Mbps, we experienced occasional stuttering while watching DivX files from our file server (at 10m away), something we had not experienced with MIMO routers in other tests. Throttling the wireless speed to 108Mbps fixed this problem.
Specifications: 802.11b/g WiFi router, 4-port switch, supports ADSL or cable, MIMO technology, up to 240Mbps wireless transmission, WEP and WPA encryption, EZSetup wireless setup, built-in firewall, QoS, port-forwarding, NAT, DHCP server.
The product is distributed by Cellnet.