I have a Netear wpn824 v1 wireless router and a motorola surfboard cable modem. I recently upgraded to 20mbps internet and after power cycling bot devices speedtest.net topped out @ 7.8mbps MAX. That's not right! so I plugged directly into the modem and I topped out at over 19mbps...
I swapped between several differant LAN cables and have the most recent firmware.
I reset the reconfigured everthing,I even turned packet inspection off on the router settings with no aid. does anybody know any other things I could try or is this 5+ year old router just not up to the task?
Now this sounds like a dumb question, but since you've brought up the age of the router I figured I'll ask. Is this a 10/100mbs router? I don't remember the time I last saw a router that didn't go over 10mbs but it's a thought that would easily explain why you're being limited in speed.
By the natural design of routers they routinely reduce the speed of the incoming network signals. This is a fact of life. The newer technology of most routers greatly reduces the amount of speed that is lost, however, no off the shelf home router is going to deliver the full ISP speed that you will get directly from the modem. Only upper end, commercial routers, will deliver this kind of performance and for most home users this is not an option because of the cost of equipment and associated cost of hiring someone to program it.
One piece of advise that I can offer to you is to contact your ISP company and ask for a list of routers that they have tested and found to be compatible with their equipment. They will gladly give this info to you. (If they wont, GET A NEW ISP!) Once you are armed with this info, break the resistance that your currently dealing with and go and spend the money and buy a good quality router from a reputable company, store, or online source. I think that if you do, you will be much happier with the results.