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Netgear DM200 modem review

Discussion in 'Other LAN and WAN' started by System Error Message, Sep 26, 2016.

  1. System Error Message

    System Error Message Part of the Furniture

    Oct 14, 2014
    After buying the netgear DM200 to replace the openreach modem (its some chinese modem) i took a close look and installed it. Getting it to work wasnt exactly straight forward.

    I obtained it from amazon for £36, it is cheaper than the openreach modem that was given by BT and BT-like ISPs before the BT homehub 5 (if you were to buy the modem from amazon). The openreach modem isnt distributed anymore because of switching to more efficient router/modem and also an inside analysis from intelligence agencies about a backdoor in the modem that was done a few years ago (companies that make the modem - huawei and zte having direct links to CCP). Not that i wouldnt say the BT homehub 5 not having a backdoor of its own, Its more of a question of who you want your backdoor to. If you recently get a VDSL ISP in the UK you will need a modem like this if you wish to use your own router.

    DM200 Unboxing album
    The netgear modem comes in a plain box with some writing and drawings. It comes with the modem itself, UK and EU PSUs, rj11 to rj45 cable (this seems very much like a joke), ethernet cable, 3 different types of DSL splitters (you can see them in picture clearly). Unlike the splitters i usually see these at least have numbers on them for references rather than just saying ADSL on a vdsl splitter (they could be the same). The unit itself has a nice smooth shiny surface with fancy holes to help with cooling.

    The inclusion of rj11 to rj45 cable instead of a standard rj11 to rj11 DSL/phone cable is puzzling, luckily i had some on hand. It seems more like they know you'd have the needed cable already and included this to help those rare instances incase you want to connect it to a router that can talk dsl over rj45 or perhaps connect the WAN and LAN of the unit together. Or perhaps to connect ethernet over rj11 networks.

    The device requires a 12V PSU with 0.5A input. Measuring with a wattmeter when powered on after a while it uses 5.6 W. This is worrying as i didnt plug in the network cables during measurement. A 0.6A PSU might be better instead but it does use less power than the openreach modem which has a PSU rated at 12V 1A. The DM200's PSU however does get hot which isnt a good sign.

    There is no battery backup port like some modems have.
    unfortunately there are no specs about the hardware inside on what chips it uses (this is a major factor in considering a modem). The only thing that i can say is that it has a gigabit ethernet port and no switch chip.

    When connecting to the modem you will be greeted with the web page in the unboxing album. I suggest you use the configuration wizard first as there is a bug that i will explain later.

    Heres a summary of what the device can do
    -auto, ADSL,ADSL2,ADSL2+, VDSL2 (no VDSL1 or vectoring or bonding options)
    - vlan, priority, mac address
    - DHCP options and DNS
    - block port scan and DoS protection
    - block internet ping
    - enable/disable IGMP proxying
    - set MTU
    - NAT filtering (secured or open)
    - SIP ALG (enable or disable)
    - DHCP server, RIP
    - can set time
    - router information and WAN statistics and connection information
    - logs
    - attached devices
    - backup settings
    - set password
    - firmware upgrade
    advanced settings
    - port forwarding
    - remote management
    - ipv6 (disabled,auto config,6to4 tunnel,Pass through, fixed)
    - device mode (router+modem/modem)

    very little configurability but does offer some security. I didnt try out router mode but if your needs are basic with no wifi needed than this unit will be fine.
    [testing and results]
    Unfortunately the only test i could do were speed tests to test the line. The line stats are also in the album above.

    The openreach modem

    The netgear DM200

    Very little difference. Perhaps in a few days the speeds will improve. This definitely works on DSL based ISPs in the UK.

    The 2 issues i see with this unit is
    1) configuration bug. You must use the auto detect at the config wizard for your internet to work as manually setting up everything does not work. So use the wizard first than delve down into advanced section (/index.htm) to change everything you want.
    2) ethernet port bug. It says in stats that port is 100M and not gigabit ethernet as they claim. Perhaps netgear would explain this as to get 200Mb/s you would need a LAN port that has that speed at least (in 1 direction not full duplex combined).

    Comparing the BT homehub 5A, the openreach modem, the netgear DM200, the BT homehub 5A syncs the fastest for me. This could be because of the chip used in their exchange. When i first subscribed to BT i was getting at least 76/20Mb/s sync with cabinet. Now with more and more subscribing to VDSL the sync has dropped to as you see in the line stats due to crosstalk and such. My advice is if you subscribe to one of these services and get something like the homehub 5A and dont need the extra capability than use the homehub 5A as its only 9W but has no bridge mode and vendor locked. If you need to use your own router the netgear DM200 is an inexpensive modem you can get to replace your modem/router given by ISP and it gives you more degree of control. Compared to the BT homehub 5A it only syncs slightly slower (around 2Mb/s slower on down but full 20Mb/s on up). The homehub 5A is only 2ms slower than my mikrotik CCR and 1ms slower than the asus AC88U in NAT.

    edit: It seems the spec sheet never mentioned gigabit ethernet as the amazon product page did. Cant call this capable of 200Mb/s download if the other port is only 100Mb/s. Its the same issue when routers were being called pentacore when they were just dual core with accelerators.
    Edit: i should've updated this years ago.
    Modem has 100Mb/s port but advertised as capable of 200Mb/s VDSL (bad mark against netgear for dishonesty)
    Modem is unreliable, requires reboot every 3 months

    on the upside its decent for a mini openwrt router acting as a server.
    Last edited: Mar 26, 2020
    setlec and sfx2000 like this.
  2. sfx2000

    sfx2000 Part of the Furniture

    Aug 11, 2011
    San Diego, CA
    My Motorola SB6183 review - plug it in, call the operator to provision - it works...

    Not much else to do...

    Obviously there was a bit of improvement... measured as below...

    Screen Shot 2016-09-26 at 6.45.14 PM.png