WRT54GC or WRT54G ??

Discussion in 'Cisco/Linksys Wireless Routers' started by woodfree, Jan 19, 2006.

  1. woodfree

    woodfree Network Guru Member

    Hi all,

    I want to buy a Wireless Router. I read your articles on WRT54GC and WRT54G and made search on the forum ...
    And I didn't understand the main differences between WRT54GC and WRT54G: this is only on the size ? or the througput on the air access ?
    I just want, in a first time, use the router with the switch ethernet and not with the wireless access !
    The most importants features for me are static DHCP / Firewall and log.

    The WRT54GC seems to have more features than WRT54G : so did you think that I should choose the WRT54GC instead of the WRT54G ?

    Thanks !
  2. Private-Cowboy

    Private-Cowboy Network Guru Member

    You really want the WRT54G. I have both (the GC model is going to my fathers home) and the G model is way better. It doesn't look as stylish but it has more features (the G model can do many things the GC cant), can be flashed with 3rd party firmware (the GC can't) and performs better (10dbm better signal and 50% better throughput with the G model out of the box - no 3rd party firmware on mine yet).

    The GC is a great little router if you wanna take it with on the road but it lacks some features and the performance is not very special. If you use a GC model you def. want an external antenna to help the otherwise pretty poor signal a little. For comparison:

    - My PC is about 20feet away from the router through one interior wall.
    - With the GC model I get a signal in the low 60s dbm
    - With the GC model and external +6dbm antenna I get to the low to mid 50s dbm
    - With the G model and stock antennas I get into the low 40s, sometimes high 30s dmb

    And don't forget that the G also performs better, NetCPS test with the GC showed around 12mbit net with the GC and 18mbit net with the G model in my network with the PC wireless and the Laptop wired to the router.

    So the GC is great for on the road use, but at home I prefer the G model - as long as its is a <5 version (I've a 3.1 with latest official firmware). The G is by far the more capable router for home use.

    To you wishes, the GC model doesn't log! Both have firewall and DCHP.

    Hope this helps.
  3. woodfree

    woodfree Network Guru Member

    :thumbup: Thanks a lot ! :thumbup:

    But now if I buy the G model by internet how can I be sure to have a < 5 version ? :thumbdown:
  4. vincentfox

    vincentfox Network Guru Member

    Get the WRT54GL. Guaranteed Linux support, many alternate firmware.

    Or go to store and sort through boxes. Toss following aside:

    BAD: WRT54G with serial number starting CDFB...
    BAD: WRT54GS with serial number starting CGN7...

    GOOD: WRT54G prior to serial number CDFB okay (CDFA, CDF9, CDF8, etc)
    GOOD: WRT54GS prior to CGN7 (CGN6, CGN5, etc)

    WRT54GC is junk. I have one and even most current firmware some features broken. Cannot port-forward ports higher than 32,767 which means I cannot use BitTorrent.
  5. Private-Cowboy

    Private-Cowboy Network Guru Member

    That's simply not true. I had a GC in operation for a few weeks and its not bad at all. And I must admit that I would have kept it if the performance would have been a little bit better. I need (or want) to stream wmv-hd through the house to my Xbox 360 (working as wmv extender) and 12mbit net speed is barely enough, but when the weather is a bit bad or the slightest fluctuation occurs the signal is not stable enough and the video stutters.

    With 18mbit net speed (the G model delivers) I've enough headroom and haven't seen stuttering of my wmv-hd material yet.

    Other wise I like the GC model very much. And the Bittorrent problem of yours is a personal on, not one of the GC. BT clients can set ports to lower ones (I use one in the 6 thousand region) and it worked all the time. That's nothing the GC can be blamed for. Besides BT and other P2P systems worked with mine without even looking at the port forwarding so again, the GC model does its job here too.

    Honestly, the GC is great if you're not looking for the fastest possible speed and like to take it with you from time to time (plug it in the hotel broadband plug and build a mini wifi network for you and your friends on the road) but for home use, the G model is simple a bit better in any respect.

    But that doesn't make the GC "junk"!
  6. vincentfox

    vincentfox Network Guru Member

    Fine, happy for you.

    My comment stands. Anything that only forwards HALF of the range of legal ports is a broken product. There are plenty of protocols above 32,000 and for good reason. My Torrent client is on 49,000 range because the network I connect to requires it, and because many ISP block or throttle the common BT ports. Heck I don't run ssh on my home network on port 22, I run it above 40,000 to avoid all the scripted attacks out there. Or say are not a Linux-head and you had VNC on your home PC. Would you forward port 5900 to internal IP? I would not recommend it, plenty of scan tools poking around the net looking for response on 5900.

    Does GC advertise itself as "travel router only, minimal feature-set!", no the box would have you believe it's just a more compact version of a real router, that can be used either for home or mobile use.

    The WTR54GS (yes WTR, not WRT) is an actual travel router and bills itself as such.

    Sure when I am on the road, there are lots of things I will put up with, and lots of sacrifices I will make. My needs are minimal when travelling. Actually for my needs a simple cable to my cellphone for GPRS data connection more than suffices.

    For a home router however, this thing has some deficiencies, and is apparently the red-headed stepchild as far as support. Calling Tech Support is a waste of time, they note your problem and circular-file it. I spent quite a while on the phone documenting this to Linksys, a report was supposedly filed. There hasn't been any firmware updates on this product since May 2005.

    I bought one to play around with it. I only keep it because I haven't found a sucker to buy it, and I keep thinking I'll dumb down it's router functions and just use it as an AP somewhere.
  7. woodfree

    woodfree Network Guru Member

    Fine I'm gonna to buy a WRT54GL ...

    Last question :
    Why is there a price difference between WRT54GL and WRT54G ?
    :eek: :eek: :eek:

  8. Private-Cowboy

    Private-Cowboy Network Guru Member

    Is there??? In local stores they cost nearly the same. Maybe the GL ist 5% more expensive but that's it. Maybe they charge you a premium because it has Linux guarenteed.

    Man the G model sells like something. I bought mine in a local Fry's on monday and they had like half a dozen (v3.1) left. Today all were gone. :)
  9. eric_stewart

    eric_stewart Super Moderator Staff Member Member

    I am absolutely happy with my WRT54GC. The 1.045 firmware fixed my sporadic, random Internet disconnects and I am very pleased with the way they shrink-wrapped the case around 4 switch ports and a WAN port. Is it perfect? No. Is it intended for Mr. BitTorrent or serious gamer? No. Is it an excellent travelling companion? Yes.

    Seriously (and packaging aside) what knowledgeable person would use this thing for any serious high-bandwidth networking with QoS, port forwarding and VPN-passthru, etc.? Probably not many.

  10. demisoda

    demisoda Network Guru Member

    Actually I have a GC too and can't do the port forward check if your is a 1.02.9? if it is i suggest you downgrade it to 1.02.8 the current version on web. I tried to flash back to 1.02.8 then do a hardware reset. After that I can do the port forward. For 1.02.9 when you wanna port forward it will prompt a message "Entry 2 invalid IP Address".

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