To benchmark the GN-WLBZ201 we
used a fairly typical home configuration. The device was installed in a laptop,
communicating with an SMC Barricade wireless router installed approximately 15
feet away on a different floor. NetIQ's Qtest was used to measure the response time and
average data throughput of the GN-WLBZ201 communicating with a computer
connected to the router with standard 10/100 Ethernet cable. We timed the
transfer of an 11.8MB file to give a real-world performance figure also.
For comparison purposes we
include benchmarks from a standard SMC 802.11b PCMCIA card (model SMC2632W).
Wireless Network NetIQ
reference card |
|11.8Mb Test file transfer
|802.11b Tests with
| WEP Average Throughput
| WEP Response Time
| WEP 11.8Mb Test file transfer
|10/100 Wired Ethernet
|Wired Response Time
performance of the Gigabyte GN-WLBZ201 was adequate in
our networking tests. While file transfers and throughput were slightly slower
than our baseline PCI-based 802.11b SMC card, the actual experience of
using the Internet on both cards was identical, whether gaming or surfing. The
only time the experience was noticeably slower was when using WEP on the
In terms of convenience and value, the GN-WLBZ201 is hard
to argue with. If you are planning on purchasing a USB memory key anytime
in the near future, why not make it one with some extra functionality
added to it?
The Gigabyte GN-WLBZ201 does both file
storage and networking quickly and efficiently, with a minimum of fuss in a
small attractive package.
Having said that, the fact of
its dual nature makes it slightly (very slightly) slower to use than a
conventional USB memory key would be (at least if you don't intend to install
the network drivers on each machine you plug the GN-WLBZ201 into), and the
current state of the Wireless network drivers for the GN-WLBZ201 means that
securing your communications with WEP is much harder than it should be.
Hopefully a more convenient WEP implementation will be in place by the time the
device hits store shelves.
Find out about this and many
other reviews by joining the Weekly PCstats.com Newsletter today!
Here are a few other articles that you might enjoy
1. Belkin Wireless 802.11b Networking