KCorp Lifestyle KLG-575 review
While we normally view proprietary speed-boosting technology with suspicion, there’s no alternative for those wanting to use wireless devices that rival the speed of a wired network. KCorp’s KLG-575 is proof that ‘interim’ technology isn’t always half-baked, as it blitzed through our speed tests. The device uses Atheros’ Super G technology, which promises to increase range, as well as boosting bandwidth to a heady 108Mb/sec.
In our short-range test, the Atheros 5005 chipset lived up to its claims and delivered an impressive 17.8Mb/sec with WPA encryption, making it the fastest short-distance router in the Labs. Once we moved down a floor and across the building, the KCorp continued to beat everything else on test, delivering 100MB of files in 60 seconds, a throughput of 14Mb/sec.
The KCorp doesn’t incorporate MIMO, which means long-distance signals often take a circuitous route. Moving out into the garden saw transfer times increase to three minutes, six seconds for 100MB of files, or 4.5Mb/sec. MIMO technology is expensive, though, as the Belkin, Buffalo and Linksys routers show, and there’s no reason not to use the KCorp for sharing an Internet connection over a long distance.
Although it doesn’t include bonus features like the USB ports of Asus’ WL-500g Deluxe, the KCorp offers a decent array. Along with the standard MAC and IP filtering comes URL, protocol and even domain blocking, all of which will help prevent undesirable content reaching users. There’s also support for a RADIUS server, so you can connect the KCorp securely to an office network. Plus, you can disable the wireless features of the router altogether, which saves having to unplug it to lock down your network.
All the important feature boxes are ticked. The external antenna is removable, allowing you to stow the router in a draw and run an external aerial on top of a desk. Four 10/100 Ethernet ports will allow you to connect four PCs, while a WAN port will connect you to your Ethernet modem or existing LAN (there’s no ADSL modem in this router).
Setting up the KCorp is a piece of cake, thanks to the intuitive web interface. Advanced settings are easy to access and alter, and there’s a useful wizard for those who’d rather not delve into the more advanced features. You can change the router’s MAC address too.
At £37, the KCorp KLG-575 offers superb value for money – especially as the PC Card and PCI adaptor, which you’ll need to benefit from the boosted speed, are so cheap. If you just want a fast, secure network that’s easy to manage, and you don’t need an integrated modem, this is the router to buy.