Skip to main content

Belkin N1 Vision review

Belkin's popular router, but with some handy improvements

Belkin N1
The main feature of N1 Vision is the emphasis on usability and ease of installation

Our Verdict

A great router, now made even better. We're just looking forward to that price cut


  • Easy setup
  • Great usability
  • Fast


  • High price

Belkin has updated its N1 Vision router since we first saw it by adding an ADSL 2+ modem.

Once you have the router in your hand, it's easy enough to spot the extra port, but the biggest clue when you're shopping is the change in model code from F5D8232-4 to F5D8632-4.

If you have a cable internet connection from Virgin, you'll probably want to look elsewhere, as the N1 Vision doesn't have a WAN port.

Considerate router design

The main feature of N1 Vision isn't its draft 802.11n speed, as that is shared with the other members of the Belkin N1 family, but instead it is the emphasis on usability and ease of installation.

The Vision model name comes from the monochrome LCD display on the front of the router that walks you through the process of setting up your new ADSL router. In fact, that's only part of the consideration that has gone into Belkin's design, as you are not obliged to type an unfriendly IP address into your browser, but instead you simply enter 'routersetup' into the address bar.

By default, the password is blank and security is disabled, but you can change that in a matter of seconds to a choice of 64-bit WEP, 128-bit WEP, WPA-PSK, WPA2-PSK or WPA-PSK + WPA2-PSK. It sounds like alphabet soup, but means it supports all the current Wi-Fi standards.

Justified price

Belkin charges a relatively steep price for the N1 Vision despite its age, but that's understandable as it has a place in the market that is unique as far as we know.

There is less excuse for the price of the F5D8051 USB adapter, which weighs in at a steep £59 (inc. VAT), but we suspect that will change quite soon.

Soon Belkin will start selling its N+ router and USB adapter in the USA, which are based on draft 802.11n 2.0 technology. No doubt N+ will carry a premium on its price and you would hope that once they are on sale in the UK we will see the slower N1 hardware drop in price.