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Billion BiPAC 7800DXL review

Andrew Unsworth
18 Jan 2014
Our Rating 
Price when reviewed 
143
inc VAT

A good general-purpose router that’s better suited to office and workplace use

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Specifications

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

The Billion 7800DXL is an ADSL2+ modem router with four Gigabit Ethernet ports and a USB2 port to which you can attach USB drives and printers to share with other users on your network. It’s also a dual-band router, which means the 7800DXL broadcasts on the 2.4GHz and the less congested 5GHz bands, and can provide access to both bands simultaneously. As the 5GHz band is less congested than the 2.4GHz band, you can typically achieve higher data transfer speeds. This is especially convenient if you have a newer smartphones and tablets that can connect to the 5GHz band, as you’ll be able to enjoy better transmission of videos and other media from NAS devices and networked PCs.

Billion BiPAC 7800DXL

As it has an integrated ADSL2+ modem, you can simply connect the 7800DXL to your phone line’s microfilters via its RJ11 DSL port, but you can also use a Gigabit Ethernet port to connect the 7800DXL to an existing network. You can also attach a 3G or 4G dongle to the 7800DXL’s USB port and use that to connect to the internet should your main internet connection fail. This is handy for households that experience occasional or frequent problems with their broadband connection, but is especially good for offices, where an interrupted internet connection is a must.

Compared to many new routers, especially those from manufacturers such as Asus and Netgear, the 7800DXL looks crude and unrefined. It’s not something you’d particularly want to have on show in your living room, but it wouldn't look out of place in an office, and it can be wall mounted for convenience and better Wi-Fi coverage. Its indicator lights and labels are clear and legible, however, making it easy to see the state of your router at a glance.

Billion BiPAC 7800DXL

Also unlike many modern routers, the 7800DXL doesn’t recommend the use of iOS and Android apps or insist on the installation of intrusive utilities. In some ways this is refreshing, but further serves to make the 7800DXL look crude in comparison to similarly priced routers.

Once it’s physically set up and connected to your computer, the 7800DXL’s web interface automatically loads when you first start your web browser, and you can configure its internet connection and Wi-Fi settings from there. The configuration screens are simply laid out and look unintimidating, but there’s no inline help, which means the process could be confusing to those who are unfamiliar with router configuration.

The rest of its web interface is similarly lacking in explanation and helpful comments, but is otherwise clear, with menu options split into sensible categories. It’ll only take a few mouse button presses to locate all the major features and settings you’ll want to enable and change, whether it’s Wi-Fi security settings or its IP address. It also has many advanced but increasingly necessary options, too, such as dynamic DNS and port forwarding.