My review for what it's worth:Build quality observations
Make no mistake, Netgear have made the D7000 as cheaply as possible, it doesn't feel like a £170 router/modem. The plastic is flimsy, it uses the same case as used on the R7000, but doesn't need to, so the result is a huge footprint of mostly empty space. Whereas on the R7000 a large heat-sink takes the heat out to the lattice/vented edges so they have some purpose (see image here http://gadget-help.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/07/sm.in_3.600.JPG
), this is not the case on the D7000. On the D7000 those lattice tapered sides contain fresh-air, and a tiny cheap unpainted aluminium sheet of metal attaches to the Broadcom SoC that faces downwards on the underside of the circuit board. Whilst the newer CPU probably runs cooler and doesn't need as large a heat-sink, the heat-sink however is effectively sandwiched between the bottom of the router and whatever surface it is placed on (rubber feet lift the case by a only around a millimeter), and it gets pretty warm underneath and that is without it doing very much work. All those lattice vents resulting in an over-sized box do not help in cooling, but the lighter weight caused by an insignificant heat sink adding little ballast, makes it feel very cheap and light.
The Ethernet ports are made from the thinnest plastic (on the R7000 router they are metal). The antennas, to save a fraction of a penny, have nickle rather than gold plated threads, which isn't best practice for GHz frequencies.
Another knod to this being made as cheaply as possible is that the circuit board is not the trademarked Netgear blue variety, but bog standard green. Why does this matter? It suggests strongly the design and manufacturer of the board has been outsourced, and boards that vary from the standard green colour normally cost a few cents more, or may not even be an option from some cheaper fabrication manufacturers. So make of that what you will.
The LED indicators look good however would light up the Albert Hall, there is a switch to turn them off, but the power LED is still lit and bright, they didn't think to dim it when turning the others off. No option to have the LEDs turn on and off by a schedule like the ZyXEL.
The D7000 feels like it should be sold for half the price, there is nothing about it that suggests a premium product.Operation
It's been pretty solid so far, no settings I've changed needed a reboot, and no unexplained reboots, and the Web UI responds quickly. However, the settings available are few, there are no Advanced settings despite their being a menu option for them, they aren't Advanced. The D7000 lacks a lot of router features, for example no VLAN options, no proper Firewall settings for adding in/out rules (which was once common on all Netgear products), no option to send out custom DNS servers to clients, it just defaults to always using the router as a DNS proxy, no option for additional subnets. A lot of Advanced Wi-Fi settings are missing, Guest networks are limited to just one on each band. No backup 3G option. Oddly with a bit of poking around a lot of these features are there by navigating to the Html page directly, including options for 3G dongles, although that doesn't mean the options work of course. They've done the absolute minimum to get it to market.
The Web UI is essentially unchanged from 15 years ago, apart from the menus being changed with some new graphics, all the settings pages are the same old poorly formatted Html, has Netgear really not put any investiment into this area in 15 years! An example of poor quality control, they have tabs for Basic and Advanced which have a solid 1 pixel border around them, clearly a mistake as they are shades of grey with rounded corners as used else where, it looks sloppy and doesn't inspire confidence, it would take 30 seconds to fix the markup (I've already done it and tested it in Chrome's developer tools), the fact they haven't indicates how much time and effort they spend on their products and what their quality control must be like.
Netgear Genie (app for Android and iPads) allows access to even less settings, and the irony here is if they spent some money on their Web UI and used a responsive design (like Bootstrap), the Web UI would work perfectly on a mobile device so you wouldn't need an app!Wi-Fi
For all it's over-sized antennas and lofty claims over Wi-Fi speeds, it performs no differently to the ZyXEL it replaced although I didn't expect it to be any better. Range seems much the same and so far Wi-Fi devices have connected with no issues.Modem
Only tried on VDSL, however the D7000 gives the same SNR and speeds as the ZyXEL, and it has been stable, however my line is fairly short so I'm not taxing the modem at all. No settings are available in the Web UI for changing an ADSL/VDSL parameters. For VDSL/ADSL tweaking it would need Telnet to change those settings and I expect they would be lost on each reboot. Getting into Telnet is a hassle requiring the TelnetEnabler.exe, the older Url short cut suggests it works, however Telnet then asks for a password if enabled this way, which isn't the password used to login to the Web UI, so that doesn't help.Conclusion
It's a lot of money for what you actually get. There may be more benefit for anyone wanting to use USB3 drives and turn it into a NAS and so putting the 1GHz processors to better use, but the extra money the D7000 costs could be saved on something just as capable but cheaper and probablyl better build quality, and buying a dedicated NAS box.
Think I will stick with the ZyXEL and hope firmware updates make it more stable.