CES 2014: PEPCOM Tidbits: Western Digital and Linksys

Subject: Storage, Shows and Expos | January 8, 2014 - 01:20 AM |
Tagged: western digital, wdc, WD, router, linksys, CES 2014, CES, 802.11ac

Western Digital:

Last night at the PEPCOM Digital Experience, we swung by Western Digital's booth. While there are no new launches at CES, it's always nice to see the full spread all laid out on display:

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4TB Green and Black, 1TB Blue, Ultra Slim drives, and of course the Black2.

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The other table shifts to backup and external storage, scaling up through the My Cloud to the larger EX4.

Linksys:

My eye was also caught by the behemoth of a router that is the Linksys WRT1900AC!

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This beast is way more than an evolution on the old WRT54G. While there are four antennas, the dual band Marvell radios are only 3x3 capable. They can, however, choose among the four antennas to achieve the best possible throughput. The '1900' rating comes from 1300Mbps (5GHz) + 600Mbps (2.4GHz). This router will be Open-WRT capable out of the box, so you can expect the folks like DD-WRT and Tomato to have usable firmware built very shortly after launch, which is expected sometime around April of this year. Let's check out the ports:

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Not only is there USB3, but we also have eSATA for even faster connectivity. Throughput to connected storage should be stellar as the on-board CPU will be a 1.2 GHz dual core ARM. Radios and CPU will be cooled by a built-in fan, and Linksys also noted they will be launching an 8 port Gigabit switch in a matching (and stackable) form factor. Open source firmware buff tech note: 128MB Flash, 256MB RAM. MSRP: $299.

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IFA 2013: Linksys Shows Off Smart Wi-Fi AC1900 802.11ac Router

Subject: General Tech | September 6, 2013 - 11:59 AM |
Tagged: linksys, belkin, 802.11ac, wireless router

Linksys made a showing at IFA 2013 in Berlin, Germany where it announced new 802.11ac wireless hardware under the Smart Wi-Fi series. The new lineup includes two wireless routers and a USB NIC. The highest-end model is the Smart Wi-Fi AC1900 router (also known as the EA6900).

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The Smart Wi-Fi AC1900 is a dual band router powered by an unspecified dual core 800MHz processor and Broadcom 802.11ac chipset that is actually manufactured by Belkin. The router has three removable external dipole antennas, two USB ports for storage devices (one USB 3.0 and one USB 2.0), four Gigabit Ethernet LAN ports, and one Gigabit WAN port.

Linksys rates the AC1900 at a theoretical throughput of 1300 Mbps on the 5GHz 802.11ac band and 600 Mbps on the 2.4GHz 802.11n band. The router can operate both networks simultaneously and can employ beam-forming technology to improve signal strength. The router further supports a 3x3 send and receive configuration for up to three spatial streams per direction. The 600 Mbps for wireless N is accomplished by using 256 QAM modulation which allows up to 200 Mbps per spatial stream versus 150 Mbps from the standard 64 QAM modulation used by most wireless hardware. Unfortunately, in order to see the increased speeds, the more advanced modulation needs to be supported at both ends (router and NIC). The router is backwards compatible with older 802.11n wireless cards but only new cards supporting 256 QAM will support the higher maximum throughput.

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The EA6900 (Smart Wi-Fi AC1900) wireless router will be available on October 4th for around $250. Early birds can pre-order the router in order to get a $20 discount and price of $230.

Source: Linksys