Belkin N750 N+ Router is the Supreme Burrito, and Then Some [Review]

Belkin N750 N+ Router is the Supreme Burrito, and Then Some [Review]

Review by Kelly Keltner

I have a love/hate relationship with routers. I love what they do and the freedom they give me; hate that they never quite live up to my expectations. I’ve been through numerous routers over the years and have yet to find one that truly impressed me. However, Belkin’s N750 DB Wireless Dual-Band N+ Router ($130) might be the first that I’ve had a good overall experience with right out of the box.

The Good:

Setup with the N750 DB is ridiculously simple. Without a doubt, this is the easiest router I’ve ever installed (and I’ve installed many). In fact, the N750 nearly installed itself. The accompanying setup CD did most of the work for me.

It’s a dual-band router, broadcasting on both the 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz bands simultaneously; this means you should have at least one path to the ‘net functioning perfectly at all times, even if one band sees interference — a perfect companion for Netflix or playing games on OnLive.

As far as speed, the N750 is probably comparable with most other routers within its range. It seems to handle large file downloads and streaming about as well as most other routers, so you won’t find it doing any sort of grand hocus pocus there — though if you have a really fast pipe, the N750 is able to handle speeds of up to 750 Mbps.

The N750 was also able to handle numerous devices simultaneously without interruption. I’ve tested this router with a MacBook, a Windows laptop, an iPhone 3Gs and a Kindle all connected simultaneously to the router over wifi and there was no interruption of service with any of the devices. Each device connected automatically and stayed connected when the other devices connected to the network.

The router’s range was also impressive — I couldn’t find any dead spots within a nearly 150 foot radius, and my laptop kept an excellent-to-fair signal throught that radius; no doubt this has something to do with the N750’s whopping five antennas — more antennas than any other router in Belkin’s N line.

Another great thing about the N750 is that the router’s diagnostic firmware updates and security are all handled through the software packaged with the router. Since I’ve had the router, the software has updated my firmware at least once, notifying me of the update when it became available. Through the software, you can also set up easy guest access for family or friends who pop over.

Finally, the N750 includes a media-sharing capability. Two USB ports located on the back of the router allow you to attach an external hard drive (or thumb drive) and share files, basically turning the router into a network-attached storage device; or plug in a printer and you’ve got wireless printing from an older printer that isn’t so wireless. The streaming works well (even for movies); like many NAS devices, it’s a little slower than a direct connection though. Also, it’ll only stream over the local network — there’s no way to stream over the Internet.

The Bad:

It’s pricey. There’s a lot of bang for buck here, but for some the features and power will be overkill.

Verdict:

This is it: the whole shebang, the supreme burrito, the  U.S.S. Enterprise. The N750 is stuffed with features, does what it’s supposed flawlessly, with numerous devices and without a fuss. Of course, all that comes at a fairly steep price; but if you live in a large house, need an all-in-one router/NAS solution or are a heavy streamer of games and movies, the N750 is a great choice.

Rating: ★★★★☆

Belkin N750 N+ Router is the Supreme Burrito, and Then Some [Review]

Belkin N750 N+ Router is the Supreme Burrito, and Then Some [Review]

  • LashaKrikheli

    If this is expensive, then what the heck is the Airport Extreme? It would help if those two were compared. I’d like to think that there’s something excellent about the Airport Extreme, especially since it’s $179.

  • Jacob L. Newell

    I agree.. I bought a 2 TB Time Capsule that has the Air Port Extreme built in and I’d like to see them compared… I have pretty snappy internet on all 3 devices connected at any given time. Compare please!

  • GH

    Blekin has NEVER done it right. Give it 13 months, it will fail. if not sooner.

  • Chuckg__

    I say that if you’re going to spend over $100 on any router, you might as well get the new Airport Extreme, which you’ll be able to set up without any antiquated CD’s by simply using your iOS 5-equipped iPhone/iPod touch.

  • lsl70
  • gnomehole

    Review = bad without mention of the more powerful features, like port forwarding etc.    Otherwise why would I switch from my Cisco/Linksys routers?

  • gnomehole

    BTW: I wouldn’t buy an Apple router to save my life even though I’m a huge Apple fan.   They don’t even allow me to use a 10.2.1.X ip range, in fact they force you on what I believe is only 2 different ranges.    Hey Apple, wake up and see that its router 101 to allow people to select their internal IP range and mask.

  • Matthew Douglas

    Excellent in-depth review of the new Airport Extreme and TimeCapsules on Anandtech’s site:
    http://www.anandtech.com/show/
    Item of note I realized from the article is the value of the TimeCapsule Premium: being integrated with a SATA connection makes your TimeMachine process much faster than an Extreme with a USB HDD attached…

  • lsl70
  • shucai66
  • shucai66
  • lals196
  • kriswm

    I too demand a comparison between the belkin n750 and airport extreme.
    you mention that it’s got dual band like it’s special, but airport
    extreme has had it for two generations now and i’m sure there are
    numerous other routers out there that have followed suite. What makes
    this one worth my wild.

  • Gary

    It’s only 89 dollars at Costco, Hawaii even.  Seems a solid router in my experience, although for some reason I couldn’t make it connect with an XBox 360 or a Sony HDTV using WPA.  Had to use WEP, even after going through all the usual hoops with India-based tech support.  

  • AnupR

    Apple is working on super WiFi so all this review will be worthless as in the end, the ISP bandwidth is what counts no matter how shiny the router is and how many ports it has. I love the airport extreme design, look and feel. It is gorgeous :)

  • vipshopper57
  • cxiaoduo
  • vipshopper57
  • Squuiid

    LOL to you buying a Belkin.
    Go here and learn something…
    http://www.smallnetbuilder.com

  • CollegiateLad

    Time Capsule is the way to go. No need for a CD. It’s frequently updated. Supports Back-to-my-mac. It’s dual dand. Has both 2.4 and 5 ghz wireless N. Allows for wireless backups with time machine. I can access all the Macs on my network when I’m away from home. I plugged a USB splitter on the back, and now I have 3 additional hard drives and a printer attached. Has settings for guest networks. Can setup from my iPad, iPhone, or iPod Touch. I can also access my drives when I’m away from home. You can network it with other routers to extend your range, like an airport express or airport extreme. The list goes on and on… It costs more though, but you get what you pay for.

  • lwdesign1

    I don’t get this review. It’s basically saying “It works good” but has little on specifics. I’ve owned several routers both wired and wireless, primarily Linksys and Airport from Apple, and on each I’ve had a network of 3 iMacs, a Mac Pro, a MacBook Pro, an iPhone and various visitors with Windows laptops connect to it all at the same time without a single hitch–so what’s so new about the Belkin router? The Airport Extreme I now have (older model) has updated itself many times over the last 3 years, and the setup was almost non-existent. This article fails to state how the Belkin is so different from what I’ve been used to for years.

  • lals8989
  • lals8989
  • Brandon Gregg

    I dont think anyone uses “back-to-my-mac” anymore its called time machine in Lepoard or higher…

  • lals5757
  • Ronald Stepp

    You should change the title of this article to “Belkin N750 N+ Router is the Supreme Burrito, and Then Some [Impressions]”

  • Victor Healey

    This reviewed router isn’t really pricy. Apple’s AirPort Extreme, now that is pricy at almost $179, slightly less on Amazon.com!

    This router is only $89 with Amazon Prime two day free shipping and no sales tax. IMHO that is cheap if it works as a NAS, NAT, wireless print server etc with a Mac.

    Is the Apple worth $90 more for the same thing? I am a huge Apple fan but in this case I am not so sure the double cost is worth it.

    I am certain it does not work as a Time Machine with a HD for that purpose hooked up to the USB port on the router. Apple’s own AirPort Express (July 2011) DOES NOT work reliably that way.
    Apple’s AirPort Express 5th generation also seems to have a fair share of user complaints of environmental noise. Come on NOISE in a $180 dollar router? It actually is in part of the cabled power supply to the Apple AirPort Extreme 5 th generation

    IMHO if you think like the US Military where they are always looking for the biggest bang they can get for a buck, this router may fit that bill for the biggest bang you can get in a router for an all Apple  system.

    Just a causal reading over several hours indicate huge problems with false specs and advertising for many similar high end routers from Asus, NetGear, Cisco Linksys, etc. Things to look out for. Printers are not supported properly in some pricy routers if at all. Other expensive routers will flat out not recognize Mac HPFS+ formatted drives when attached via USB, a huge fail for any Mac user.

    As I see it there is no harm in trying it from Amazon as they even pay for return shipping if a product does not meet your needs for the first thirty days. They make an instant refund on your credit card.

    Belkin includes a full two year warranty on this router according to the manual I downloaded.

    IMHO Kelly Keltner did a reasonable job of alerting the Apple community to what may be a viable alternative to Apple’s Airport Express. I appreciate it.

  • lsl66
  • Mystakill

    You don’t have to use the CD to set it up, but it does a very good job of stepping you through everything quickly & easily.  You can still browse to it and configure it that way as well, should you so choose.  AE’s are only “easy to setup” because Apple baked the AirPort configuration into OS X and iOS 5 (which most people don’t have yet).

  • SarahTurner902082

    I just p a i d $21.87 for an i P a d 2-64GB and my boyfriend loves his Panasonîc Lumîx GF 1 Camera that we got for $38.76 there arriving tomorrow by UPS.I will never pay such expensive retail prices in stores again. Especially when I also sold a 40 inch LED TV to my boss for $657 which only cost me $62.81 to buy.
    Here is the website we use to get it all from,
    http://bit.ly/Bid1st

    NOW 100% WORKING

  • djrobsd

    FAIL.  AEBS only has 3 ethernet ports, most normal routers like Belkin, Netgear, and Linksys have 4.  For most people that won’t matter, but for me everything is located next to my router all wired via ethernet. 

  • David Rutan

    Back to My Mac is a mobileme service for accessing your systems from outside your local network. Very useful tool when traveling and completely different from Time Machine.

  • lelh79r
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  • posimosh

    Did you actually read the article?

  • posimosh

    Ok so I have read all of the replies to this. Most of which just said buy an AEBS or TC from apple, this belkin is cr*p…  So my question is, to those who have dismissed this belkin out of hand, where can I find a airport card that has a 3 stream compatible wireless n card?  Also how do you install said card in to a mbp or macpro? After you answer these two questions you can explain how the cards work with this new iteration of wireless n devices, if you can’t explain this, you have no idea what you are talking about.

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