The TRENDnet TEW-812DRU is an 802.11ac router that combines performance and affordability in a way that makes it a solid option for most consumers. Although it’s a little slower on the 2.4GHz n-band at 450 Mbps, its performance on the 5GHz ac-band, at 1300 Mbps, solidifies it as the one of the best wireless routers available.
The TRENDnet is designed to stand vertically but doesn't come with any kind of stand for support. It is quite wide, however, which helps to reduce its risk of toppling over. On the backside of the device, you'll find a variety of useful ports and buttons.
Each of its five network connection points are gigabit ports. This includes four LAN ports for connecting network devices via Ethernet cables. Devices connected in this way have access to the fastest speeds your service can provide. The fifth connection point is a WAN port, which connects to your modem.
The TRENDnet also features a USB 2.0 port located just above its networking LAN ports. A USB port on a wireless router allows you to connect devices like printers and storage devices for network use. Many premium routers also include USB 3.0, which is roughly five times faster. Unfortunately, there is not one on this router.
Security for the TEW-812DRU is provided via an SPI firewall, a NAT firewall and WPA2 encryption. These firewalls help to keep malicious information from passing through your router and infecting the devices on your network, while WPA2 encryption keeps hackers from intercepting and accessing your information.
Set up for this dual-band router is intuitive, requiring only a few simple steps. This is because the TRENDnet comes with a preconfigured network; the network name and password is found on a sticker on the device. Once connected, you can easily access your router's configuration page to customize your password and network name.
The TRENDnet's configuration page isn't the most comprehensive in our lineup, but it's certainly adequate for most users. From here, you can open ports for gaming, adjust firewall settings or configure parental settings like URL blocking and scheduling.
TRENDnet offers a one-year warranty on the TEW-812DRU, which is standard for the wireless router industry. The company also offers email and phone support. One of the best support options TRENDnet offers is live chat, which can help you avoid some of the wait times commonly associated with phone support.
Although the TEW-812DRU is a bit slow on the 2.4GHz band, it's still fast enough for most consumers. Its high speeds on the 5GHz band, coupled with its affordability, distinguish it as one of the premier wireless routers on the market.