When Compex emailed me one day asking if I would like to review one of their switches I jumped at the opportunity. Since my current Linksys 10/100 8 port switch was full, and my need to keep collecting computers not extinguished, I was in need of another switch. A few emails and a couple of days later there was a package at my door with my new DS1216 16 port switch in it.
For those of you who don't know what the difference is between a switch and a hub let me explain it to you. A hub works basically as a repeater; it gets a packet from one of the computers and broadcasts to all the other computers. But any time that 2 computers broadcast at once, the packets collide and both have to be re-sent. A switch however receives a packet, opens up the packet reads where the packets is going and only sends that packet to the port on the switch that the destination computer is plugged into. This significantly reduces packet collisions and greatly improves performance. If your on a huge network a switch will increase security, because your not broadcasting you credit card information or any other important data across to everyone on the network.
The DS1216 seems to be designed for a small business or a power users home network. The switch is constructed using an all metal casing and looks like it is built to take some abuse. Another nice feature about the DS1216 is the power adapter. Unlike other inexpensive switches that require a bulky transformer the DS1216 uses a standard computer power cable, this is a very welcome feature.
You don't know how many LAN parties I've been to that we had to go back home to grab the transformer that we left behind, but we had 2 or 3 extra computer power cables laying around.
On the back of the switch there is a 40mm fan moving a far amount of air for it size. I can barely here it over my power supply. I don't find it annoying but some of you noise freaks might find it a little loud for your taste.
Now, I like things with lots of little lights on it the more lights the better. I wasn't disappointed with the DS1216, it has a power indicater light and 2 leds per port. One indicates if your 10/100 base and blinks when there is activity, and the other one indicates if your running at full or half duplex.
Here are some technical specs. on this switch:
||IEEE 802.3 10Base-T, IEEE 802.3u 100Base-TX, IEEE802.3x flow control;|
FCC Class A, CE Mark
||16 10/100Mbps RJ45 ports|
||System Power, Collisions, 10/100Mbps, Full/Half Duplex, Link/Activity|
Full Bandwidth Non-Blocking Switch Architecture
||IEEE 802.3x Flow Control (Full Duplex)|
Back-Pressure Flow Control (Half Duplex)
||Store & Forward|
|MAC Address Table:
||30 watts (max.)|
||210mm x 130mm x 44mm (LxWxH)|
Operation : 0°C to 40°C
Storage : -20°C to 70°C
Operation : 10%RH to 80%RH
Storage : 5%RH to 90%RH