Diamond WR300NSI Wireless Repeater Conclusion
IMPORTANT: Although the rating and final score mentioned in this conclusion are made to be as objective as possible, be advised that every author perceives these factors differently. While we each do our best to ensure that all aspects of the product are considered, there are often times unforeseen market conditions and manufacturer revisions that occur after publication which could render our rating obsolete. Please do not base any purchase solely on this conclusion, as it represents our rating specifically for the product tested which may differ from future versions. Benchmark Reviews begins our conclusion with a short summary for each of the areas that we rate.
Diamond Multimedia has been in the business of making (co-branding) a lot of different products over the past few years. Once upon a time they were a key player in the discrete graphics card market, prior to the economic collapse and subsequent decline of the desktop PC industry. Now they’re making common-sense products that address everyday needs for mainstream users. So far, it seems that they’re doing more for consumers now than every before.
In terms of performance, the Diamond WR300NSI portable wireless-N repeater works to relay signal and stretch the network’s reach, or it can maintain peak transfer speeds with less emphasis on extending range. It performs either function well, at up to 300 MB/s when the router supports it and signal is sufficiently strong. Some devices will need to manually choose their connection, while others will transition from the router to repeater automatically (causing momentary loss of connection).
With regard to appearance, Diamond Multimedia’s WR300NSI wireless bridge device looks inconspicuous enough to go unnoticed. Aside from the illuminated signal strength indicator that glows a somber green, there isn’t much to draw your attention to the device. Its rounded corners make it appealing to the i-gadget crowd, while the dull edges will prevent the device from catching on clothing or anything else that may come in contact.
Construction is solid for the WR300NSI repeater, and since it lacks moving parts the only potential weakness would be electronic failure. During normal operation the device does get warm to the touch, but not anything I would consider hot, and cools itself passively. Since there are no vents in the device it’s not likely that it will benefit by any special orientation. Diamond Multimedia warranties the WR300NSI for one year, and may be reached toll-free at (888) 238-2272.
In terms of functionality, the Diamond WR300NSI works three-fold: wireless access point for 10/100 LAN device or network appliance, wireless network bridge, and wireless range extender/repeater. I found that for home users the wireless repeater function helps maintain optimal transfer speeds for streaming multimedia (such as Netflix, HBO GO, Amazon Prime, etc). For larger environments, the network bridge and range extender features will be most desirable.
As of July 2013, the Diamond Multimedia 300Mbps 802.11n Wireless Repeater Range Extender was available online for $49.99 (Amazon | NewEgg). Alternatively, Diamond also offers all these same wireless functions in another device that does away with the signal indicator and costs only $39.99 (WR300N at Amazon|NewEgg). Both offers solid value, and could update an older Wi-Fi network.
Summary: overall I really like the Diamond WR300NSI. It performs exceptionally well for a device that costs under $50, and helps extend older wireless network appliances. While home users with the latest wireless 900N routers may not benefit from a Wi-Fi repeater, those with the more-common 300 MB/s wireless-N routers can certainly benefit from them by maintaining maximum data transfer speeds to their Internet-connect devices. I highly recommend the WR300NSI (and WR300N) for those users.
+ Supports wireless 802.11b/g/n standards
+ Wireless 10/100 Ethernet access point
+ 300 MB/s wireless network bridge
+ Extends Wi-Fi signal range
+ Extremely easy configuration
+ Very low power consumption
+ Helps eliminate wireless dead spots
- Network transfers are not seamless
- Only 2.4 GHz frequency supported
Final Score: 8.8 out of 10.
Quality Recognition: Benchmark Reviews Silver Tachometer Award.
COMMENT QUESTION: Would you spend the money on a wireless repeater, or buy a new router?