The Amped Wireless High Power Wireless-N 600mW Gigabit Dual Band Router R20000G is intended to be a significant upgrade over the previous model, the single-band R10000G, gaining simultaneous support for the 5GHz band, a USB port, and a more solid chassis. Other than that, the new true-dual-band router looks generally similar to its predecessor.
In my testing, however, it was anything but similar to the R10000G in performance. The router offered relatively long range but terrible data rates on the 2.4GHz band. On the 5GHz band, conversely, it showed comparatively short range but very good data transfer speeds. All in all, the R20000G, at $180, is a good router for short distances, but it's not for those who need good wireless coverage over a large area. The R10000G, which currently costs about $50 less, is still better. Also check out other routers if you want something that offers more features and solid performance.
Setup and design
The R20000G is almost exactly the same as the R10000G in terms of design, with the exception of the more solid chassis and the added USB port on the back. Like the R10000G, the new router comes with two extra-large detachable antennas that really crowd the four LAN ports and one WAN port on the back. These ports are Gigabit, meaning you're guaranteed to have a fast wired network with the device. The USB port can also be used to host an external storage device and not printers.
The router arrives with two LAN (CAT5) cables, one plugged into its WAN port and one plugged into one of its LAN ports. This can make life a little easier for router novices since it helps speed up the setup process. You just need to connect the cable in the WAN port to an Internet source such as a broadband modem, and you are set. (You can plug the other LAN cable into a computer that doesn't have a built-in Wi-Fi adapter, or ignore it if all of your devices are Wi-Fi-enabled.) Now you can use the preconfigured wireless network information printed on the router's bottom to connect the devices to the network. The router also comes with a Wi-Fi Protected Setup button on the back that makes it possible to connect WPS-enabled clients to the network without you having to know the preconfigured wireless network information at all.
The router is designed to be put flat on a surface with four rubber feet. It also comes with a small detachable base so it can be placed in a vertical position. I wouldn't recommend using the base, however, since it's very light and doesn't hold the router reliably. The router can also be mounted on a wall.
On the front of the R20000G is an array of LED lights showing the status of the ports on the back, the connection to the Internet, and the router's power status.
If you're not happy with the router's default settings and want to customize them, including turning off Wi-Fi Protected Setup, that can be easily done by pointing a connected computer's browser to the router's default IP address, which is 192.168.3.1. The default log-in information for the Web interface is also printed on the bottom of the router.
Like the R10000G, the new R20000G doesn't have a lot of features, but it has enough for most home or even simple office needs. The router's interface supplies a wizard for customizing the network's settings, and you can also customize Web filtering, quality of service, firewall, port forwarding, and so on.
The R20000G's networked storage feature is also very simple. Once an external hard drive is plugged into the router's USB port, its entire content will be shared across the network with everybody having full access to it. There's no way to customize this. In addition to this simple sharing method, you can set up an FTP server targeting the external drive. In my trials, the USB port worked with external hard drives formatted in either NTFS or FAT file systems and was able to handle drives that already contained data, quickly sharing a drive's content with the rest of the network.
Like the R10000G, the R20000G has a feature called Wireless Coverage that allows you to manage its wireless power, setting it anywhere from 100 percent to 15 percent. I don't know when you'd want to use this feature since I tested the router at 100 percent and its performance still didn't impress.