The Linksys X3000 keeps you connected, but
probably not very invested
Cisco's Linksys X3000 modem router sits
itself among the higher-end, slightly more premium range of devices -- and
prices just similarly. Being up at the top means you're usually having a lot to
offer, which means there's a lot for us to expect from the X3000 as well. It's
therefore a little unfortunate for us to find it falls a little short below our
But not in design, surely. The X3000
maintains the same trademark design that Linksys has more or less gone with the
"If it ain't broke don't fix it" route, making it as attractive as
ever. It's slim, sports an elegant grey-black look, and still reminds us of the
snow speeders of Hoth.
Despite its slim built, the X3000 still
manages to fit a plethora of ports at its rear, which include the essential LAN
ports (four of them), a DSL and a WAN port, and a USB slot for NAS setups. The
LAN ports are gigabit ones, so you can at least be convinced that its LAN
connectivity will be appropriately fast.
Linksys has ensured that the setup process
is an easy affair, and it mostly is. The software CD's prompted clicks will get
you connected (wired or wirelessly) in no time, and it's certainly among the
easiest to set up. The software CD will also install the Cisco Connect software,
which is pivotal to get the best out of the X3000. It provides a friendly
interface for management of some of the router's basic functions, including
setting guest networks and parental controls.
Cisco Connect can also create a USB key
that contains the software, which you can run on other PCs, letting them
connect to the network automatically without having the need for passwords.
You can expect the X3000 to perform well,
and it doesn't disappoint. In our throughput test, the X3000 manages solid and
consistent transfer rates at near and medium range (about 47Mbit/s and
35Mbit/s, which is pretty good). The broadcast range and stability is quite
large, in spite of its internal antennas.
The X3000 falls short on expectations is
because it doesn't hold anything --features-wise and performance-wise -- that
impresses us. It performs well, sure, but we're not wowed. And at its price
range, we expected to be wowed.
Cisco Linksys X3000
Standards (Wireless): 802.11n, 802.11
LAN Ports: 4 x Gigabit Ethernet
Antennas: 2 internal
Security: 64/128-bit WEP, WPA, WPA2,
TKIP, AES, WPA-PSK, WPA2-PSK