Recommend me a wireless router in case Linksys tries to foist a refurb off on me.

Short version: Linksys E3000 craps out on me within the warranty period. I spend 2 hours online with Shehbaz trying to get it running. No luck. Then I spend 3 hours online with Prasant. No luck.

“Because of complexity, please call voice support at 1-800-xxx-xxxx”

So I call.

The fellow (I don’t remember his name) will be happy to help me, as long as I go through all the steps Shehbaz and Prasant have already guided me through.

Oh, but since voice support is only free for 90 days, I have to pay.

No. This thing is broken. I made no configuration changes. No, no one else did either. No, there were no power outages or surges. It just. Stopped. Working. Please give me an RMA and send me a new router.

Please hold.

Many minutes later, he comes back on the line and offers me a refurb.

I pretty much lose it (well, not really, but I definitely let him know a refurb was not acceptable.) The E3000 is a crap design. It does not have adequate airflow, so it overheats easily. There’s page after page of commentary on this issue at the Linksys forums. Known issue, and 100% manufacturer’s defect. It is simply unconscionable that a company like Linksys (OK, Cisco), whose products I used to preferentially buy because they were good (I had a WRT54G that lasted for years and years), would try to buy me off with a refurb when I am making a legitimate within-warranty claim.

I am calling tomorrow to try to conclude this sorry mess.

So, in case they do, and won’t budge, I obviously will never be buying another Linksys product, and would appreciate any suggestions. I read that the router market is actually pretty competitive now.

Anyone?

I’ve been using a TrendNet TEW-632BRP (discontinued, but still available on the discount market) for a year and a half or so. I know it’s not one of the premier names in the router biz, but I’ve only had to reboot it because of a dropped signal once, whereas with the previous three — two Linksys and a D-Link — it was a weekly occurrence. If it ever craps out I’ll almost certainly stick with the brand.

I’ve been through a bunch of brand name routers, too. I also have fond memories of the pre-Cisco Linksys WRT54G. It just plain worked–forever. It still works, I just wanted a N-level router.

I stumbled onto the TrendNet TEW-652BRP, which is the replacement for the one mentioned in a previous post. It has been totally reliable. I also have a TrendNet travel router which I use in a far corner of my house connected to a Powerline extender that has been trouble free. This brand is inexpensive and is generally rated well at www.smallnetbuilder.com, which is a great resource for comparing routers.

Agree about the Linksys. Mine (WRT54G) needs to be re-started several times a month, sometimes several times a day–would love to find a more reliable router.

Moved MPSIMS --> IMHO.

Just upgraded mine at home to a D-Link (coming from another D-Link before that). Here’s a link to it.

It seems to have a lot more coverage than my old one did and I’m really happy with it so far (I’ve only had it for about a month now).

Thanks, all. Please keep them coming. So far, because of the nature of internet reviews, I haven’t found anything remotely conclusive. Some sites say the Asus RT-N56U is the bees tits. Some say it’s dog vomit. The same site will recommend a particular Netgear router for performance, then when you go to their review for that router, it will say, “Meh, if you want good performance, this other Netgear router’s really better.” Customer reviews, as always, go from “5 stars! Solid unit!” to “I’d give it 0 stars if I could. This router is the Antichrist.”

Grr.

Not going to be much help here as my E4200 is doing just great. Fast, easy to set up, amazing range. It’s been running for a few weeks now without the slightest hiccup. When I was setting up I had to change two channel settings instead of auto channel but hey, no biggie to me.

Here’s what you want to do. Get the Cisco-Linksys WRT160N-RM from Amazon. Yes, it’s refurb. Doesn’t matter, it’s fully warranted. And then, and this is the important part, flash it with dd-wrt firmware. That unlocks all the functionality and gets you a $150 router for $30.

The only catch is to make sure you get a version 1 or version 3 when it arrives. If its version2, send it back. I’ve been buying these for friends and family for a couple years now, and I’ve only ever gotten v3s, so I don’t think it’s a problem anymore.

They are super easy and reliable. Never have to reboot it, ever.