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D-Link DIR-845L Cloud Router - Performance, Value & Verdict

Gordon Kelly

By Gordon Kelly


  • Recommended by TR
D-Link DIR-845L Cloud Router


Our Score


Review Price £105.00

D-Link DIR-845L - Performance

So does it all come together? Yes and in a big way. D-Link’s own aforementioned DIR-645 has been our benchmark 2.4GHz 802.11n router since its release in November 2011, but the 845L takes its crown. In our real-world testing scenarios of 2 metres, 10 metres line of sight and 13 metres behind two solid walls the 845L achieved speeds of 10.6MBps (84.8Mbit), 10.5MBps (84Mbit) and 5.5MBps (44Mbit) respectively. This notably trumps the 645 at distance as it scores 10.3MBps, 9.8MBps and 2.57MBps under the same conditions.

2.4GHz 10m

The 845L is also the fastest dedicated 802.11n 5GHz router we have tested managing highly creditable speeds of 18.8MBps (150.4Mbit), 12.5MBps (100Mbit) and 7.1MBps (56.8Mbit) in our increasingly challenging test environments. You will note from the graphs above and below speed consistency is also rock solid and even the base figure of 7.1MBps (56.8Mbit) will smoothly stream 1080p.

The snag is the 845L cannot compete with 802.11ac routers, even when operating at 5GHz 802.11n. Notably D-Link’s own DIR-865L achieved speeds of 20MBps, 14MBps and 12MBps in the same environment and it was a similar story with the AC-compatible Linksys EA6500. Moreover 802.11ac itself delivers significant speed advantages, particularly at range. 30MBps (240Mbit) at 2m, 25MBps (200Mbit) at 10m and in excess of 20MBps (160Mbit) at 13 metres achievable were typically achievable on both the 865L and EA6500 when connected to 802.11ac compatible devices.

All of which means D-Link has set new standards for 802.11n dual band routers, but it still lags behind next generation 802.11ac routers - even when they perform at 802.11n.

5GHz 2m

D-Link DIR-845L - Value

Of course, beating next generation AC speeds was never the aim of the 845L and by sticking to 802.11n it is able to deliver sizable cost savings for anyone not swayed by 802.11ac. Consequently the 845L retails for just £84.46 before VAT, a price which has seen retailers typically sell it at a fraction over the £100 mark. Compared to the £150 to £180 RRPs of the best 802.11ac routers it is a highly compelling purchase.

It is worth noting the Netgear R6300 and Buffalo AirStation 1750 can be found for under £150, but our tests shows 802.11n 2.4GHz performance (by far the most common WiFi standard) on the former to be disappointing and both 2.4GHz and 5GHz 802.11n performance on the latter to fall woefully short.

D-Link DIR-845L - Verdict

The DIR-845L proves 802.11n routers can still be taught new tricks. It is the fastest dedicated wireless n router we have tested and its performance at distance really stands out. The best 802.11ac routers remain faster, even operating at 802.11n, but with a 50 per cent cost saving and sparse AC compatible hardware the 845L has bags of appeal. Throw in D-Link’s intuitive setup process and mydlink Cloud-based remote control and anyone not tempted to wait and mass upgrade their kit to 802.11ac should reach for their credit cards now.

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March 6, 2013, 11:50 am

I'm having connection issues in parts of my Bungalow with a DIR-615
Wondering an upgrate to the model reviewed here would be a better alternative to say a wireless extender box?

Gordon Kelly

March 8, 2013, 5:33 pm

If you're looking to cheaply extend your wireless range there is no better way to do it than the 845L. You aren't future proofed as with the AC routers, but it will make an immediate and substantial difference compared to the 615.

I'd buy it and try it without any wireless extenders first, but remember to place your router as centrally as possible.


April 20, 2013, 10:12 am

Have just got one of these and am impressed with its performance, but have failed to get my Vodafone SureSignal to work with it at all... any ideas?

Lou Bandiera

May 18, 2013, 9:51 pm

I got one of these recently. Very disappointing, weaker signal and slower internet throughput than my old DIR-655 on 2.4 ghz (which doesn't have all the bells and whistles such as AMPLIFI, SmartBeam, etc). It's going back to Costco tomorrow.

Gordon Kelly

May 28, 2013, 12:43 pm

How strange, our results were excellent. Perhaps it is worth exchanging the unit.


May 29, 2013, 4:52 pm

Just bought this router and am quite impressed with it. What's struck me so far is its consistent performance - my previous router's speeds used to dip up and down but this one is rock solid. Also, there's no waiting when changing settings via its web-interface - only stuff like updating firmware requires a countdown.

The only other negative is that the router feels quite light and plasticky, but apart from that fully agree with the review. This will tide me over 'til the 802.11ac standard becomes ratified and AC routers and equipment drop in price.


August 3, 2013, 11:12 pm

I can't get the "media" band to show up on all my wireless devices. Does this have to do with not being compatible with some network adapters?


August 18, 2013, 11:36 am

Performance is no better than my older Linksys E3000. Smartbeam? Gimmicky as it doesn't provide any better reception than my older unit either. So why replace a bought and paid for router that works ok with a unit that also only works "OK"? No reason, so it's heading back to the store.


August 26, 2013, 8:58 pm

Is it usual for the better quality routers to require a separate modem (as this one does I believe)? I have always used a router supplied by a service provider (recently changed from BT to Plusnet) which have always included a modem as part of the router. The Plusnet router/modem is hopeless - particularly getting wifi signal through some thick solid walls in an old house - so I need to upgrade but not sure of the best way to do it. Any ideas please?


October 26, 2013, 10:17 pm

I'm about to order this router. It caught my eyes your comment re firmware update. I thought the update is automatically done but based on your statement it's not. Could you please share what issues did you face with the update?

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