The new router the Taiwanese company wants to provide Network Fast wireless for your home at a price that will not tear your pocket. Does he succeed in the mission? The answers are inside
While in the world there is a flurry of announcements about routers operating in the standard 802.11acRouters of this type arrive in Israel in a thin drip and at a slow pace. As of the date of this review, less than 5 routers that support the AC standard that cost less than NIS 500 are imported into Israel in an orderly manner. This is a very limited variety that does not express the popularity of the AC standard in the United States and Europe.
The blame for this situation must be laid down by the Ministry of Communications, which, due to the constraints of the defense establishment, has set a non-standard range of use in the channels of Frequency 5Ghz. As a result, importers of wireless products are forced to go through a ordeal that includes making special adjustments and arranging compliance tests that the firm conducts.
This review is another opportunity to call on the Ministry of Communications to stretch its waist, work to release the blocked frequencies and standardize the use of the 5Ghz frequency as is customary in the US, or at least as is customary in Europe.
According to technical data, the router DIR-825 / AC Of D-Link is cataloged as aAC1200 - That means it supports 300Mbps at 2.4Ghz and 866Mbps at 5Ghz. The router has one WAN input and 4 wired ports (LAN) which all operate at 1G speed, input USB One 2.0 and two external antennas in praise of 3dBi each.
The DIR-825 / AC was originally developed for D-Link's Eastern European markets (Russia, Ukraine, etc.) and therefore most of the documentation and parts of its interface turn to the Russian market. At the same time, the DIR-825 / AC can be found in Israel in a wide variety of stores (HERE And here) At a cost of about NIS 400.
Note: As can be seen in the image above, the color of the DIR-825 / AC is black. D-Link markets a router with a similar name - DIR-825 (Without the AC extension) that supports only the N standard. Router It is characterized by a white color. Note the difference and do not confuse the two models.
Main features and features of DIR-825 / AC
Linear ports and support for IPvxNUMX: The DIR-825 / AC features one WAN port and 4 LAN ports, all operating at 1Gbps. The router fully supports IPv6 at both LAN and WAN level.
Dialers and WAN support: The Eastern European roots of this router are revealed in this menu. Under the providers menu you can find a long list of Eastern European countries such as Russia, Ukraine, Kazakhstan, etc. Clicking on the country name shows a list of providers אינטרנט (ISP) and selecting one of them, fills in the relevant details in the other fields on the screen.
Israel does not appear in the list of countries, and therefore it is necessary to perform a manual setting and select the dialer type and contact details individually. The DIR-825 / AC supports a long list of dialers, including the dynamic IP and L2TP used by the cable network and PPPoE flash.
Wireless capability: The DIR-825 / AC supports the AC standard and is cataloged as the AC1200 - that is, using two antennas at each frequency, it supports 300Mbps at 2.4Ghz and 866Mbps at 5Ghz. The WPS mechanism that the router supports can be turned off from the menus. The router does not support the Guest Zone and at each frequency only one SSID can be set.
Note: Note that the router comes with a dual channel width setting both in the 2.4Ghz frequency and the 5Ghz frequency (ie 40Mhz and 80Mhz, respectively). In crowded wireless environments, the double width may cause performance degradation. Therefore, in these situations, consider changing these settings to 20Mhz and 40Mhz, respectively.
WDS mechanism: The DIR-825 / AC does not support a classic WDS mechanism, which allows to chain routers in a way radio, Except in WISP, which is a simpler and easier method to implement - in the menu in the image below, select WiFi and in the submenu that opens in the Client option. On the screen that opens, check the checkbox called Enable client, select from the list the wireless router you want to root, type its encryption password and press APPLY.
It is worth noting that the WISP mechanism can also be connected to SSIDs operating at the 5Ghz frequency. A full explanation of WISP implementation in the router can be found on the user's 149 page.
NAT and PORT reference mechanism: The NAT-DIR-825 / AC NAT enables the port forwarding through a mechanism known as Virtual Server. The router's referral mechanism supports NAT LoopBack, enabling the home network to contact an internal address using the external address and a specified number.
DHCP Mechanism: The default address of the router is 192.168.0.1 and it divides IP addresses in the 2 to 100 range with the 24 (lease) query time. All these parameters can be changed. The mechanism also allows computers to set a fixed IP address based on the MAC address of the network card.
USB Input: The router has a standard entry USB 2.0 that supports printers, external storage devices, and cellular modems.
Storage Devices: PortUSB Supports storage devices formatted on NTFS or FAT32 and their connection is automatically detected by the router. Using the custom menu you can browse through different partitions and even delete files.
If you use the file-sharing mechanism, which is based on Samba software, you can access any files stored on any computer by using d-link \\. Alternatively, the files stored on the device can be accessed using the built-in FTP mechanism but on the router.
In addition, the router has a built-in DLNA server that allows you to play the media files that are on the storage device on devices - such as TVs and media streamers - that support this protocol.
Cellular modems: If you connect to theUSB A cellular modem is activated when the WAN connection is disconnected. When the WAN connection returns to normal operation, the wireless modem automatically disconnects.
The DIR-825 / AC supports a long list of cellular modems, both those running on 3G,LTE (Generation 4). The full list of models can be found on the router's information page here.
Access to the router: Access to the router is done, as usual, using a user name and password. The default D-Link is admin, for both the username and the password. You can change the management password using the menus.
The DIR-825 / AC can also be accessed remotely, via Network The Internet, using a port that the admin determines. You can also set a closed list of IP addresses that only access the router menus. If necessary, as shown in the screenshot below, the router can also be accessed on TELNET.
Dynamic DNS: The router supports 3 dynamic DNS services - DynDNS.org and NO-IP as well as a private service of D-Link called DLinkDDNS, which is based on DynDNS.
Restriction of access and use (Access Control and Parental Control): The access restriction mechanism of the DIR-825 / AC is very basic and only works at the URL level. It allows you to set a "white list" or a "black list" of their URL will or will not have access to the Internet. The mechanism works against all computers on the network and does not allow scheduling.
Secure DNS mechanism: The Eastern European origin of the router is reflected in the implementation of the secure DNS service of the Russian company Yandex. The company, sometimes referred to as "Russian Google", provides a wide range of services אינטרנט Including a DNS service similar to OpenDNS. This service is provided in 3 levels Security, Knows how to filter out malicious URLs and ensures a high-quality, secure translation to an IP address.
Traffic Prioritization (QOS): The DIR-825 / AC router does not have a traffic prioritization mechanism (QOS) which allows to limit the volume of traffic by port or IP address. At the same time, the router supports this indirectly through the Networks Virtualization (VLAN), where each VLAN can be given priority in traffic on a scale of 0 to 7.
Firmware update: Although DIR-825 / AC has an automatic mechanism for detecting and installing a current plant, at this stage it is not relevant to Israel. Because of the restrictions imposed on the use of 5Ghz in Israel, the firmware burned on the router (1.0.2) is unique and there is currently no active site containing updated firmware. Along with the automatic update and given an updated firmware file, you can of course manually update.
Statistics, Status, and LOG: The DIR-825 / AC LOG is typical of BusyBox-based routers - although it provides detailed information but does so using technical language that a normal user would have difficulty finding his hands and feet in.
Help mechanism: The firmware does not include a built-in HELP mechanism, but the user guide (with LINK at the end of the review) is very detailed and holds about 250 pages.
Charging times and REBOOT: Most of the changes to the DIR-825 / AC configuration settings require a one-and-a-half minute BOOT process.
Guest Zone Wireless: DIR-825 / AC does not support this - at each of the frequencies (2.4Ghz and 5Ghz) the router only supports one wireless environment.
Support for LD_WRT: As of the test date, this router does not have a DD_WRT version.
Simulator: This router does not have a simulator that allows you to experience and know the router menus in the Internet environment.
What comes in the box
The DIR-825 / AC router comes in a cardboard box whose colors are white, black and turquoise, which characterize all D-Link home products. A large picture of the router appears on the front of the box and in the back is a list of its main features and comparison with other AC products of the company. The router and all accessories are placed in a box inside a recycled cardboard bath.
The bottom of the box can be found White sticker Which includes the router model (without the AC score), serial number, MAC address, hardware version, and firmware version. It should be noted that due to the restrictions imposed on the 5Ghz frequency in Israel, routers coming here have a firmware version that differs from that shown on the sticker.
The box itself contains the router itself, power transformer (12V / 1.5A) and cable Network Yellow length of about one meter, which includes 8 tendons. In addition, you can find a warranty certificate, software license (GPL) and a quick installation guide in English and Russian.
The color that controls the router is black, and on the lower part of the router you can find a large number of ventilation holes. As shown in the picture below, the router's router data is printed on the lower part of the router, the WPS code, its IP address (192.168.0.1), user name and default password.
Some details on the label require special attention:
- The router model on the sticker is DIR-825 when the letters AC are missing.
- The firmware version is 2.5.23, but in practice, the router has a special Israeli firmware that is 1.0.2.
In terms of physical data - the size of the router is 20 cm by 15.5 cm and its height, excluding the external antennas, is 3.5 cm. -825 cm. The antennas are permanently connected to the router and are not replaceable.
At the front of the router, on the left, you can find the WPS button and the following interfaces (right to left):
- Right antenna
- Power input
- Fire-fighting switch and router
- RESET button
- USB port
- 4 LAN inputs in the RJ45 interface
- WAN port
- Left antenna
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To open the DIR-825AC 4 simple Phillips screws located under the rubber feet of the router must be loosened. After removing the top cover, the back of the router's electronic board is exposed. As you can see in the picture below (to enlarge - click on it), on this side are the antenna connections and at the bottom you can see 8 LEDs. from left to right:
A green power light turns on regularly when the router is on.
Status light turns green when there is an active connection to the Internet and red when there is no connection.
A WAN light flashes green when the WAN port is connected to a cable Network Hapoel Mall Network the Internet.
4 green LAN LEDs that indicate whether the relevant port at the back of the router is connected to a cable Network active.
WLAN LED: When lit green - only 2.4Ghz frequency active. When it lights up in red - only 5Ghz frequency is active. When it glows orange - both frequencies are active.
Note: The router does not have an indicator light on the status of theUSB.
In the image below, you can see the "interesting" side of the electronic board on which the DIR-825 / AC is based. On the board you can see the following main components:
Under the heatsink on the left, at the top of the image, is the RTL8197DN component from Realtek - this is the SoC (central processor) on which the DIR-825 / AC router is based. This component is a faster version of The RTL8197D Which I found on the ED-X's EDXax BR-6478AC router I reviewed about two years ago - Clock frequency of 660Mhz compared to 500Mhz.
Below it is the component RTL8367RB Which manages the router ports. This component is capable of managing up to 7 ports, all at the speed of 1G.
Above the processor is the RAM component of the DIR-825 / AC router. God-NT5TU32M16EG-AC Of Nanya provides a volume of 64MB to manage routing tables and data retention.
Next to the RTL8367RB you can find the Flash component of the router - The MX25L6406E Of the company Macronix. This component provides a volume of 8MB within which the router's firmware is stored.
The DUR-825 / AC wireless interface is managed by two separate components - The RTL8192ER The one responsible for the 2.4Ghz frequency (to the right of the processor) and the RTL-8812AR responsible for the 5Ghz frequency (on the top left of the image) - both from Realtek.
At the bottom of the image, you can see the following connections and switches (right to left) - WAN input (yellow), 4 LAN inputs (black), input USB, RESET button, ON / OFF switch and voltage input. At the top, on the left, you can see a small button - this is the WPS button that is actually on the front-left side of the router.
Note: The combination of Realtek's 4 components - the RTL8197D processor, the two RTL8192ER and RTL8812AR wireless components and the RTL8367RB port management component - characterizes a long line of routers cataloged as AC1200. For example, in addition to the BR-6478AC from Edimax, which I mentioned earlier, the routers also Archer C5 Of the TP-LINK companyThe X650 ZyXEL uses this combination.
Installation, user interface and initial settings
After connecting the network cable and power supply, the DIR-825 / AC router menus are entered through the 192.168.0.1 address, with the default username and password admin.
After going through the installation wizard's questions, the new user interface of D-LINK is revealed, in which it recently uses products intended for the Israeli market. In terms of its structure, it is a standard interface - on the left side there is a menu of options, with the relevant parameters for each of them appearing on the main screen on the right.
Beside the classic user interface, you can test the status of the router and change most of its parameters from a unique graphic map. At first sight, it seems that this is a complex and complicated map, but once it is deepened, it becomes very useful.
In principle, the map - which appears in the screenshot below, can be divided into three parts:
On the left, in a column that continues from top to bottom, you can see the control and connection components of the router - the WAN connection, the Fire Wall interface, the parental control, the wired interface, the wireless interface and its access control mechanism.
At the top of the right side you can see all the devices connected to the router using DHCP and the devices (wired and wireless) that have a fixed IP address on the bottom. Along with all the devices you can see an icon representing the router's virtual server.
The line - the blue part - that separates the top from the bottom shows the address range of the DHCP mechanism, with the green flag on the line representing the address of the router itself.
The uniqueness of this interface is its interactivity. When you mouse over any of the items on the map, a menu or relevant information is displayed, when clicking on it pops up a window by which you can change or add parameters. For example, clicking on the Virtual Server icon pops up a window through which you can define the port opening parameters for an IP address.
A detailed explanation of this interface can be found in Chapter 4 Router user guide.
Note: The user interface of the DIR-825 / AC works responsibly - that is, it adapts itself to the screen size, its resolution and the device on which it is operated. For example, when you enter the user interface from a browser running on a smartphone, the interface adjusts itself to the small screen automatically. An example of how the interface is displayed on a smartphone can be seen HERE.
The following table lists the performance tests of the DIR-825 / AC routers.
Several notable points:
- The internal switch speed is indeed 1G.
- The NAT mechanism (operating in the WAN <-> LAN interface) allows speeds approaching 500 Mbps. This speed allows support for very fast WAN connections, both in the cable network and in the Unlimited.
- The number of connections in the WAN <-> LAN interface is a little less than 10,000. This is a slightly lower result than expected for this type of router.
- Write and read speedUSB Consistent with this expected router.
The following network cards and wireless devices are used for the test. All tests were performed in the latest firmware and DRIVER versions, using the default features of the router and network cards.
- Internal card type Ultimate-N 6300 Installed on your computer Lenovo X61s. This is a dual card with two internal antennas.
- Network Card TL-WN8200N Of TP-LINK operating at 300Mbps speed. This card connects to your computer atUSB And includes two external antennas in praise of 5dBi each.
- Network Card TL-WN722N Of TP-LINK operating at 150Mbps speed. This card has one external antenna.
- A network card in the Edimax USB interface EW-7822UAC. This card, which supports the AC line, has a removable antenna.
- Nexus 5 Smartphone (Model 2013) with Android 5.1.1.
All results in the table below are in Mbps.
Several notable points:
- The DIR-825 / AC delivers excellent performance at both 2.4Ghz and 5Ghz.
- This performance test, which first uses the TL-WN8200N card, demonstrates the importance of a card Network With significant external antennas. The results obtained with this card were very good in all the locations tested.
- Once again, the advantages and disadvantages of the 5Ghz frequency are revealed - excellent performance in short ranges and rapid decay as the distance between the card and the router increases.
Note: Performance tests are conducted in an apartment located in a condominium, in a dense urban environment, which includes (except for the router being tested) more than 10 In the frequency 2.4Ghz And one network running on5Ghz. This network load produces significant electromagnetic noise that affects test results. Thus the wireless performance measured by is only an indication of the capacity of the router and it is quite possible that in a different environment and at a different time different results will be obtained. I posted about this on my blog Long post And I highly recommend reading it carefully.
Conclusions and impressions
God-DIR-825 / AC Of the company D-Link Is the Router802.11ac The second one marketed in Israel at a price lower than NIS 500,BR-6478AC Of the company Edimax, it I looked two years ago. Although these two routers are categorized asAC1200 And despite the resemblance to the hardware components on which they are based, the DIR-825 / AC is a more up-to-date and faster version, with a wider range of features.
For example, the DIR-825 / AC supports mobile backup of the WAN connection, secure DNS servers, a wide range of services USB Like DLNA and FTP, in IPv6 both the LAN and WAN level and the division of LAN inputs into virtual networks (VLANs). In addition, the new menu structure, which is based on a bright color palette and is also suitable for small screens ("responsive interface"), is also a refreshing innovation.
Externally, the DIR-825 / AC is elegantly designed and features a nice combination of black plastic, some glossy and some matte. For the purpose of indicating its activity, the router uses very delicate LEDs and during the dark hours of the night, the router does not become an excessively shimmering "organ of lights". The nice design of the router allows it to be placed on the TV cabinet in the living room of the house, without it being seen there as a foreign plant.
Check the wireless performance of the DIR-825 / AC at the frequency 5Ghz, Both in the AC standard and in the N standard, gives excellent results, especially in the short term. In the medium and long ranges the router proves its N standard frequency capability 2.4Ghz, Especially when a wireless card, such as theTL-WN8200.
Although the AC speed test was performed with the help of an Edimax adapter, D-Link also markets a similar adapter in Israel DWA-182. This adapter, also cataloged as AC1200, connects to a computer via a USB 3.0 interface and costs in Israel. About NIS 200.
The DIR-825 / AC served me as a home router for close to a month with its WAN input connected to the HOTBOX 2, which provides 200M download and 5M upload speeds. Its LAN ports are connected to my busy home network which includes 3 1G switches, two wireless access points, 5 desktops and about 10 devices Mobile. Throughout the period, and although placed on a shelf in the dresser TV Dense, it remains perfectly stable.
The DIR-825 / AC is an important addition to the limited market of AC routers in Israel. Priced at less than NIS 400, it provides a very good performance shell and a wide range of features, facts that make it a highly recommended purchase.
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