The USB-N53 mirrors and extends (literally) the near-flawless experience we've had with ASUS' networking products. They're super easy to setup and takes minutes at most, the UI is clean, organized, user-friendly, easy to use, and works great. The USB-N53 has looks that match some of ASUS' venerable routers, the RT-N56U and the RT-N66U which delivers a simple splash of eccentricity to a simple form factor. ASUS has kept the included configuration utility to a low profile that is very unobtrusive while still providing useful tools and configuration options. One of the cool features is the ability to create a "soft AP" where the USB-N53 can be used to extend your Wi-Fi network or to create a small guess connection which allows limited access to guests, a pretty slick feature for a USB wireless adapter. ASUS also offers monitoring to track the quality of the connection as well as the configuration details. IP Release and Renew buttons are there to keep you out of the command window, a nice touch, one of many that make the overall experience that much better.
The overall performance was very good, with 5GHz connections offering nearly 90Mb/s throughput anywhere in my house, even through two external walls. Both frequencies offered little performance attenuation, and the connection quality was very stable. The ability to position the USB-N53 using the included USB adapter also helps you make the most of the available signal no matter where you are. We were a little surprised to see the throughput on the 2.4GHz connections not exceed that of the integrated wireless performance in our test notebook, but still provided nearly 30Mb/s which enough to make good use out of most consumers' internet connections.
Priced at around $35, the USB-N53 has alot going for it. Dual-band connectivity in a USB stick is great by itself, but its performance, ease-of-use, unobtrusive utilities, and soft AP modes give the USB-N53 serious value and versatility. Considering that decent PCI and/or USB network adapters cost around $25-30 and offer far less feature-wise and are significantly more involved to setup and use, the USB-N53 is priced very competitively. Today you can take it home, after rebate, for under $30, which for an adapter that can provide you with no-sacrifice wireless gaming for a desktop or laptop, fantastic range, and ease-of-use is a great value.
Did we miss something or have you found any inaccuracies? Suggestions and corrections can be sent by commenting below or the "Contact" button at the top of the page. Your feedback helps us improve!
- << Prev