To help us provide you with free impartial advice, we may earn a commission if you buy through links on our site. Learn more

Trendnet TEW-812DRU review

Our Rating :
Price when reviewed : £85
inc VAT

This excellent 802.11ac wireless router doesn’t cost too much but you can get more consistent performance for a little less money elsewhere


802.11n dual band, 4x 10/100/1000Mbit/s Ethernet ports

The Trendnet TEW-812DRU is a bit smaller and lighter than most of the 802.11ac routers we’ve seen, but this AC1750 simultaneous dual band device is still specified with a theoretical maximum 5GHz transfer speed of 1,300Mbit/s. It’s equipped with a Gigabit WAN port and four Gigabit Ethernet ports, but beyond that, your extras are limited to a single USB port, a hard power switch and a WPS button.

Trendnet TEW-812DRU

The router’s wireless networks already have passwords set by default and the router’s web interface includes wizards to help you configure your internet connection and customise your wireless security.

The web interface is clear and well designed, with the advanced settings kept separate from those that’ll be of most interest to day-to-day users. However, some features are obtusely designed by any standard. The QoS settings, designed to prioritise the most important types of traffic that go across your net connection, are a case in point. Where other routers let you choose specific programs or general types of traffic, here, you have to add rules based on IP address, protocol and port. Even these settings are buried under configurable traffic class settings that all but the most hands-on network administrator is likely to find virtually incomprehensible.

Trendnet TEW-812DRU interface
Clear and largely well presented, but some features are obtusely designed

The wireless settings are much clearer, although once again it’s easy to stumble across very advanced settings such as beacon intervals, which most people will want to steer well clear of. You can enable extra wireless guest networks on both the 2.4GHz and 5GHz bands, so you can give visitors access to the internet without letting them have freedom to roam your local network at will. In the advanced settings screens, you can configure firewall rules that are only active at specified time, which is good for jury-rigging a scheduler to keep the kids offline at night, and set up all the usual port forwarding rules and static IP addresses that you might desire. We’ve seen better-documented and more user-friendly interfaces, but at least everything’s clearly labelled.

The router also has network share (SMB) and FTP server features, which you’ll find in the Administrator settings and can use to share a USB hard disk connected to the port at the back, turning the router into a very simple NAS device. You can also share a USB printer, but will have to install the Windows-only Trendnet control utility on every system that wishes to access the printer.

Trendnet TEW-812DRU

We tested the router’s wireless performance with both our Centrino 2 reference laptop’s integrated wireless chipset and a £25 Trendnet TEW-805UB USB Wi-Fi adaptor. Using our laptop’s own wireless adaptor, which supports 802.11n 5GHz but not 802.11ac, our 5GHz test produced transfer speeds of 86.99Mbit/s at 1m and 82.33Mbit/s at 10m but the connection was unstable at 20m in our heavily congested testing environment. Our 2.4GHz test using the same internal adaptor gave us 41.3Mbit/s at 1m, 37.6Mbit/s at 10m and 15.9Mbit/s at 20m. When it tested it with the Asus PCE-AC68 PCI-E wireless adaptor, it achieved a transfer speed of 80.4Mbit/s at 20m, making it one of the fastest performers at this range.

With a clear interface, surprisingly low price, effective wireless performance and plenty of features, this is an excellent choice if you want to get into the world of high-speed Wi-Fi. However, BT Home Hub 5 maintained a more stable connection during some of the tests carried out in our interference congested wireless test environment.

Basic Specifications

Rating *****
Modem type none
802.11b support yes
802.11g support yes
Draft 802.11n support yes
Draft 802.11n 5GHz support yes
MIMO yes
Turbo mode channel-bonding
Stated speed 1,300Mbit/s


WPA2 yes
Firewall yes
MAC address filtering yes
DMZ yes


Size 180x48x155mm
Antennas 6
Internal/external antennas internal
Upgradeable antenna no
Number of WAN ports 1
Ethernet ports 4
Ethernet connection speed 10/100/1000Mbit/s
Other ports 1x USB
Wall mountable no
Power consumption on 8W

Other Features

Dynamic DNS yes
Universal Plug and Play support yes
DHCP server yes
MAC spoofing yes
Port forwarding yes
WDS Support yes
USB device support yes
QoS yes

Buying Information

Price £85
Warranty three years RTB