Draytek Vigor 2900g Broadband Security Router Reviewed

Wireless Performance

"Signal Quality" readings were not available from the WinXP Zero Configuration client used
Testing was done with a DrayTek Vigor540 Wireless 11g CardBus Adapter in a WinXP Home Dell Inspiron 4100 laptop unless otherwise noted

The throughput test results in Figure 18 show best-case performance of 24Mbps, which is comparable to other 802.11g products running without any of the myriad throughput enhancement technologies.

Vigor 2900G - Four condition throughput
Figure 18: Four Condition Throughput test

(click on the image for a full-sized view)

Note that the lowest result was obtained in Location 3, which is one floor below and at the opposite end of the test building.

Though a check of the Vigor540 test partner client card's Advanced Network properties showed a Nitro mode (Conexant's throughput-enhancement technology) entry that was set to 1, I suspect that neither Nitro nor Nitro XM is enabled in the 2900G itself. If it had been, I would have expected to see more like 27Mbps under the same test conditions.

Location 1 (best case signal) runs with WEP128 then WPA-PSK (TKIP) enabled yielded average 1 minute speeds of 23.0 and 18.1Mbps respectively. These translate to throughput reductions of about 5% and 25% respectively, when compared to the "naked" best-case 24.1Mbps result.

The 25% reduction for WPA (TKIP) is right in line with tests I've run on other PRISM-based products and appears to be baked into the chipset. Unfortunately, the PRISM chipset doesn't support the alternative AES encryption that Broadcom provides as a way around the problem in their chipset. So if you want to use WPA with the 2900G, you'll unfortunately pay a high throughput penalty.

802.11g Wireless Performance Test Results

Test Conditions

- WEP encryption: DISABLED
- Tx Rate: Automatic
- Power Save: Disabled
- Test Partner: DrayTek Vigor540 Wireless 11g CardBus Adapter

Firmware/Driver Versions

AP f/w:
Wireless client driver:
Wireless client f/w:

Test DescriptionSignal Quality (%)Transfer Rate (Mbps)Response Time (msec)UDP stream
Throughput (kbps)Lost data (%)
Client to AP - Condition 1024.1
[No WEP]
[w/ WEP]
1 (avg)
1 (max)
Client to AP - Condition 2012.91 (avg)
2 (max)
Client to AP - Condition 3082 (avg)
4 (max)
Client to AP - Condition 4013.61 (avg)
3 (max)
See details of how we test.