ASRock G10 Gaming Router Review

Author: AkG
Date: December 28, 2015
Product Name: G10
Part Number: G10
Warranty: 2 Years
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ASRock’s H2R Dongle & Software

Held in place via a hidden magnet in the G10’s top area resides the other really, really distinctive feature: the removable H2R dongle. This is a dual use device that will appeal to a broad range of users. Its main focus is to provide HDMI Miracast abilities much like Google’s ChromeCast adapter. In essence that means you plug this handy little tool directly into a TV’s free HDMI port (or via the included HMDI extension) and then using the free ‘EZ Cast’ App on your compatible device (Android-based or Apple), wirelessly play movies on your big screen HDTV. Meanwhile, the H2R receives power from the TV’s USB port via the included USB to micro USB adapter.

In testing with a Samsung Galaxy Tab Pro 8.4 and two ASUS Nexus 7 (2013) models (one running Lollipop the other running Marshmallow) the H2R device did indeed live up to its billing….sort of. First and foremost, Miracasting introduces a lot of lag and a certain amount of compression artifacts into the equation.

In addition, the vital piece of is not made by ASRock and as such the H2R’s stability, and usability as a Miracast device is totally and completely at the mercy of a third party. ASRock should have taken the time to ‘role their own’ program to take advantage the G10’s countless features. More to the point the EZCast program is an obvious work in progress that crashed on numerous occasions on our Android devices. The only device that was reasonably stable was the Samsung tablet which is running a customized, jail-broken version of KitKat.

In the coming months we assume ASRock will work with the makers of EZCast to fine-tune the program for stability and usability, but given the limitations that Miracasting brings to the table (and can’t be fixed by ASRock) this accessory certainly won’t be replacing HTPC’s or even dedicated media playing devices anytime soon.

Thankfully the H2R has another ace up its sleeve: it can also be used as a 2:2 wireless access point. First plug the dongle into any device with a USB port capable of powering it or any USB wall adapter (one can be purchased separately from ASRock). Then plug the H2R’s WAN port into an Ethernet connection with the included RJ45 cable and presto you have a fairly decent 802.11A/b/g/n wireless network for multiple devices. While it may not offer 802.11AC abilities since the underlying AM8250 chipset is not capable of AC performance, the compact H2R is still perfect for the road warrior who spend a lot of time in hotel rooms where there is only one Ethernet port and wireless connectivity is spotty at best.

The wireless network created by the H2R is rather limited in size, but we consider this a good thing – especially if you are paying for internet connection bandwidth in a hotel room. Also note that this dongle uses is a standard mini-USB port that requires less than 1A of 5V power so you can simply use a USB battery pack to run it.

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