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Written by Carl 'lowlight' Nelson [07.14.00]
Manufactured by: ZyXEL, Umax, Netgear, Linksys, and D-Link
Suggested Retail Price Price: Varies - $100-200
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The Winner! ZyXEL Prestige 310

The Prestige 310 offers the most robust Cable/xDSL router of all.  If you can afford it, get it.  The Prestige 310 receives an "I am HARDCORE" award for being such a kick-ass product.  Congrats to everyone at ZyXEL.  Let's hope this is the beginning of something big for them!

Runner Up: Linksys BEFSR11

If you don't have $250 to spend on the ZyXEL right now, the next best thing would be the Linksys BEFSR11, which can be found on the IBuyer Network for under $100.

For a Cable/xDSL router that provides all your basic needs, look no further than the Linksys BEFSR11.  It is a breeze to set up, and offers great value for a sub $100 unit.  Congrats to everyone at Linksys! 

The Graph

Overall Score Unit Ease of Installation Value Virtual Server Flash Upgrade
A / 95% ZyXEL Prestige 310 A B A A
B/ 85% Linksys BEFSR11 A B B B
C+ / 70% Umax UGate 3000 B C- B A
C+ / 70% Netgear RT-311 B A C C-
C+ / 70% D-Link DI-701 B B C+ C-

Conclusion?

To be completely honest with you, you can't really lose with any of these routers.  They all did what they were intended to do: share cable or DSL internet access, and provide a firewall.  Some go about it in different ways, and some offer different features, but when it comes down to it, they all performed well.  If you are only able to find one of the bottom units, for example, you will still be satisfied with the results.  However, if you want the best of the best, try to find a ZyXEL dealer (good luck!).

Update [07.17.00] Due to OVERWHELMING response to our Cable/xDSL Router Shootout, we will be posting part II this week!

Part II will include:

  • At least two new routers: Linksys' BEFSR41 4 port router, and Nexland's ISB2LAN 4 port router, more if manufacturers respond fast enough.

  • Info on the Netgear RT311 using the exact same hardware as ZyXEL, including our results in flashing the RT311 with ZyXEL's firmware!

  • Advanced port scanning results. We will show you exactly how well the routers compare to each other in keeping ports closed. This includes UDP ports that many people overlook!

  • Price updates: If we find even better prices, we'll let you know about it!

  • Game Server Results: We will test these routers with several games, including Unreal, Quake 3, as well as running servers with these games.

Overall, this will be like a brand new fully featured article! Stay tuned to hardCOREware for more!

PART II IS HERE!!!

Page 1: Introduction
Page 2: D-Link DI-701
Page 3: Linksys BEFSR11
Page 4: Netgear RT-311
Page 5: Umax Ugate 3000
Page 6: ZyXEL Prestige 310
Page 7: Conclusions

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