NETGEAR GS116 vs. GS316 – Which unmanaged switch should you get?

Unmanaged switches, also known as Ethernet switches, are networking devices that connect multiple devices (such as computers and IP cameras, among others) into a common network then use the packet switching technology to receive and process data before forwarding it to the destination client.

Considering the multiple Ethernet switches in the market today, it can be very difficult to choose the best-unmanaged switch that is suitable for your network. To make the process easier, we have narrowed down your options to two high-performing and most popular unmanaged switches preferred by many- the NETGEAR GS116 and the NETGEAR GS316. Here, we have identified multiple differences between them in terms of their performance and their overall build quality. Thereafter, we will review them in terms of their technical specifications before giving our verdict on which of the two is better suited to match your network needs and preferences.

What are the differences between the NETGEAR GS116 and the NETGEAR GS316?

Unmanaged Switch
Unmanaged Switch
Size dimensions

(W x H x D)

11.22 x 1.06 x 4.06 inches
11.26 x 1.02 x 3.98 inches
2.2 lb
1.85 lb
16 Gigabit Ethernet
16 Gigabit Ethernet
Performance/ Switching Capacity
MAC Address Table

NETGEAR GS116 vs. GS316 – How do they compare?

Mac Address Table Entries

The NETGEAR GS116 supports 8K MAC address table entries, while the GS316 supports 16K MAC address table entries. These table entries simply represent the number of active systems that the unmanaged switch can filter traffic. These MAC addresses define your device identity and it helps you prevent security threats by hackers. So, the more the merrier.                                


The NETGEAR GS116 switch is designed to accommodate the internet needs and preferences of business networks, whereas the NETGEAR GS316 unmanaged switch is categorized for the small office & home office environment. This, however, does not mean that you cannot use the GD316 switch for small offices and home environments and vice versa.

Energy/Power Consumption

One of the major differences between these two unmanaged switches is that the NETGEAR GS316 is equipped with a feature known as the Energy Efficient Ethernet that the GS116 does not have. This feature uses a technology known as the Low Power Idle that has a low energy consumption state that you can use when there isn’t any link utilization. Because of this feature, the NETGEAR GS316 has a lower power consumption than the GS116.

Cable Length Detection Features

The NETGEAR GS116 supports Auto green mode, while the NETGEAR GS316 does not support this feature. The Auto Green mode actively detects the cable length and adjusts the power usage to save energy when the need arises. Something you should note is that the length of an LAN cable somewhat affects the signal quality.

NETGEAR GS116 vs. GS316 – A Comprehensive Overview

NETGEAR GS116 Review

The NETGEAR GS116 has been designed to accommodate the network needs and preferences of the office setting, and perhaps some home users. Towards the front of the switch, you will find 16 numbered ports on each port. The individually lit ports simply help anyone who isn’t tech-savvy troubleshoot easily and quickly. Besides that, this network device is designed to be mounted on walls and under tables, hence reducing clutter around office desks. Its mounting plate is quite large and it easily secures to walls or tables using two screws and supplied mounting hardware, and runs virtually the entire length of the switch.

Towards the back of the switch, you will find a label that gives warranty information and another that has the MAC address printed making it easier for you to find the switch’s management interface on the network once you have connected the unit. It may not have an external power brick but it offers a power cord that supplies power to the unit and keeps it running.

When it comes to performance features, the NETGEAR GS116 supports two LAGs and a maximum of 8 ports per LAC, which is a great feature to have if you are using a similar unit or a low end NAS. Another useful feature on this switch is the VLAN feature that allows you to have up to 128 VLANs on this device. In terms of power consumption, it consumes a lot of power compared to the GS316. When it comes to noise production levels, it runs quietly because it doesn’t have any fans, hence a great option for conference rooms.


  • Ideal for noise sensitive environments
  • Supports desktop and wall placement
  • Simple plug-and-play set up
  • Good build quality


  • The management interface is limited and cumbersome, especially when you are configuring VLANs

Check Price on Amazon

NETGEAR GS316 Review

NETGEAR 16-Port Gigabit Ethernet Unmanaged Switch (GS316) - Desktop or Wall Mount, Silent Operation
  • 16 Gigabit Ethernet ports
  • Simple plug-and-play setup with no software to install or configuration needed

The Netgear GS316 16-Port Gigabit unmanaged switch has been designed to help you expand your network device capacity around your home and office environment. It features sixteen Gigabit Ethernet ports with a 32 Gb/s switching capacity and about 1.44 Mpps forwarding rate that allows you to connect network devices such as IP cameras, storage devices, computers, and more. Along with that, it has a plug-and-play design that allows you to easily mount it to a desktop or wall without having to add any hardware or additional configurations. Because it doesn’t have any fans in its structure, it operates quietly hence the best device for quiet environments.

In addition to that, this network switch is optimized using the standard-based technology that ensures interoperability with any standards-based devices within the existing network. To eliminate the need for cross over cables, it is fitted with NETGEAR Switch’s auto-MDI/MDIX technology. Besides that, it Is equipped with a high-performing, energy-efficient technology known as the Energy Efficient Ethernet that ensures power savings at all times.


  • Plug and Play design
  • Ideal for small offices and home networks
  • Rugged design
  • Silent operation
  • Durable and sophisticated design


  • Subject to network failures

Check Price on Amazon


The NETGEAR GS116 and the GS316 are powerful unmanaged switches designed to help you expand the network design capacity around your home and small offices. Besides their user-friendly nature, you would greatly appreciate their high-performing nature, compactness and durability.

Verdict: So, which is better – the NETGEAR GS116 or the NETGEAR GS316?

After comparing these two network switches, we discovered that the NETGEAR GS316 is a better and more capable network switch than the NETGEAR GS116. It saves a lot more power and has multiple features designed to accommodate all your needs and preferences.


  1. Is the NETGEAR GS116 rack mountable?

No, and it is highly unlikely that you will ever come across a rack mountable network device.

  1. Will the NETGEAR GS316 unmanaged switch function at 300 Mbps download speeds?

Yes, it will. Considering the fact that it is a Gigabit unmanaged switch, it should have the capacity to handle 300 Mbps download speeds.

Leave a Comment