Our opinions are based on firmware version 188.8.131.52, 20-Jun-2008, which shipped installed with our review sample. There were no newer firmware updates online at testing time.
TRENDnet's lightweight 350 gram TEW-672GR 300Mbps Wireless N Gigabit router comes dressed up in a stylish black colour box with a glossy black plastic material top surface. It looks rather nice but smudges easily with fingerprints. The built-in NAT and SPI firewalls are said to protect you from 2000 different cyber attacks - yep, that many. You get four auto-MDIX 10/100/1000Mbps Gigabit LAN (Local Area Network) ports which are conveniently coloured orange and one auto-MDIX 10/100/1000Mbps WAN port that is coloured blue to easily distinguish the difference.
Being a 300Mbps 802.11n Draft 2.0 router, there are three fixed antennas attached, each rated at 2dBi. We tried detaching the antennas with no success - you won't be able to attach bigger and more powerful antennas to increase the range of the signal.
TRENDnet's TEW-672GR router is the first which we've tested that includes Dual Band technology. It has two radios inside with one operating in the 2.4GHz frequency range band and the other operating in the 5GHz frequency range band. This means that the router is good to support all wireless modes including 802.11a, b, g and n. Do not be fooled though - you cannot operate both radios at the same time and that is a real shame. You must choose either 2.4GHz or 5GHz, which presents itself as a range of different modes in the routers' web interface, as you can see below.
You are able to choose from eight different wireless modes - missing of course from the list is the 802.11a/b/g/n mixed mode.
You will also notice the Radio On/Off section in the screenshot above. This router includes a simple yet genius manual wireless on/off toggle switch on the back of the router, easily allowing you to turn the wireless radio on or off in an instant. The beauty of this feature is that you don't need to turn the router on and off for it to take effect, nor do you need to reboot the router. This feature is extremely handy as you can quickly turn wireless on or off without having to go to a computer and log in to the router's web interface.
Another handy feature included on the TRENDnet TEW-672GR router is Wireless Protected Setup (or WPS for short). WPS allows you to quickly allow other wireless clients to join your network - providing they also have WPS support - all with the touch of a button. The TEW-672GR is also the first router we have seen that allows you to run multiple SSIDs (visible or non-visible network name). You can run up to four SSIDs, each with different security settings and MAC address filtering abilities. This is super handy if one of your wireless devices doesn't support a particular encryption security method that other devices use or if it doesn't have any wireless security at all. You don't need to leave your wireless network open to the world.
On the front of the router there are a whole bunch of various activity lights telling you what is happening. From left to right there is the power indicator, LAN1, LAN2, LAN3 and LAN4 indicators, WAN indicator, WLAN indicator and finally the WPS indicator. When powered on, the "Wireless Router" logo also lights up in an orange colour.
There are air vents on each side of the router and evidently they work well, as the router barely got warm during our testing - just a tad underneath but nothing to cause any concern.
On the back of the router we see nothing out of the ordinary with the labelling showing the serial number and MAC address. There are two mounting holes which allow you to mount the router to a wall, but the clips were not included in the package. However, some 3M non-stick hooks will easily do the job.