TP-Link is fast becoming known for having the best cost-to-performance devices out there, bucking the trend that says the more expensive a router is, the better it must be, as points out in the beginning of their review. The review sought to test this with what is perhaps TP-Link’s best cost-to-performance wireless router.


    In their first extensive review of a TP-Link product, the Netherlands’ site provided an end-to-end review for Dutch users, ultimately resulting in a Silver award for TP-Link’s TL-WR1043ND. The site’s review consisted of five parts, including hardware, specs, wired throughput tests, wireless throughput tests, and power consumption.

    Hardware and Specifications

    In true due diligence, took the TL-WR1043 apart to reveal what was under the hood. Perhaps the most impressive find for the review team was the router’s three external antennas, which they said, were quite rare for 11n devices and an ‘outstanding design choice’. Also noted were the router’s Atheros wireless chip, Realtek Gigabit Ethernet chip, USB Storage capabilities, as well the ability to replace existing firmware with DD-WRT, though unnecessary.

    Wired Throughput Tests

    The TL-WR1043ND scored very well in the two throughput tests compared with 8 other routers, scoring the second highest in both LAN to LAN and WAN to LAN tests. In the first LAN to LAN test, the router transferred data at 926Mbps, just slightly lower than its Gigabit capability. In the WAN to LAN test the device also did very well at 2.4GHz, again with the second fastest throughput of 132Mbps.

    Wireless Throughput Tests

    In this test, the site noted that any given speed test under a certain circumstance doesn’t give users a true look at the performance as does an average of multiple speed tests with different variables. In this case, the router did quite well, surprising its reviewers.

    The reviewers tested the routers under 4 conditions, LAN to WLAN at 10 and 20 meters and WLAN to LAN at 10 and 20 meters. In the LAN to WLAN tests the TL-WR1043ND scored third and first respectively, of the routers tested at 10 and 20 meters, with data throughput speeds of 65Mbps (10m) and 48Mbps (20m). The router performed equally well in the LAN to WLAN tests scoring second of all 9 routers tested in both tests. Data throughput recorded was 76Mbps and 50Mbps at 10 and 20 meters respectively.

    Power Consumption Tests

    While power saving technology is not an intrinsic feature of the TL-WR1043ND, the device performed admirably against competitor routers, with an average power consumption rating.

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