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Looking for a power line network adapter with wifi extender built in.

1,252 1,631 January 15, 2018 at 11:18 AM
We have a rather larger house and the cable modem we have struggles particularly with the signal from floor to floor. I'm looking for a power line network system that has wifi extenders. This seems like a better solution to me for our streaming and other needs than trying to buy repeaters or set up multiple routers. I'm looking for recommendations on the best value system. Ideally I'd locate the Cable Modem/router centrally and put power line adapters on the two opposite ends of the home where we happen to have our TV's. Then the could stream via hard connection.

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Have you ruled out running ethernet? As someone who streamed over powerline for a while, installing ethernet was the best thing I could have done for performance and reliability.
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The home is finished. Running Ethernet seems excessive. I would like to avoid moving the cable modem around the house depending on where we are.
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Hard wire is always preferable. Even if it costs $100 a run to do it, it is well worth it in the long run rather than spending money on unreliable power line adapters in my experience. Powerline adapters are fine for situations where they do work and where running a hard wire ethernet cable is too bothersome or costly (like up multiple floors\through fire stops, etc.). They are flaky however in my experience as they can literally give widely varying results in the same room on 2 separate outlets depending on the home's wiring and the interference of other stuff in the home.

That said, combining a powerline adapter and wifi extension literally makes no sense imo. The former is used to turn your electric wires into network runs. The later to connect via wifi\expand wifi coverage. Apples and oranges imo. If you have a powerline adapter, connect a network switch to it to expand ports. If wireless access is the problem from that part of the home, then setup a wireless access point to the powerline adapter. An extender is a different animal altogether and is basically repeating the wifi signal to increase wifi range. That is not needed if access through a hard wire or powerline adapter is available. It will also halve your wifi speed.
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Quote from Beave
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The home is finished. Running Ethernet seems excessive. I would like to avoid moving the cable modem around the house depending on where we are.
With powerline networking you should expect WAY less throughput that what the mfgs claim. Adapters that claim 500mbps will probably actually yield 50mbps or less and that's halfduplex shared by all devices like a token ring network.

I'd recommend you run ethernet or use MoCa adapters.
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Quote from jkee
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With powerline networking you should expect WAY less throughput that what the mfgs claim. Adapters that claim 500mbps will probably actually yield 50mbps or less and that's halfduplex shared by all devices like a token ring network.

I'd recommend you run ethernet or use MoCa adapters.

To say nothing about the fact that many of them claim such and then stick a 100mbit port on the device lol.
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Quote from Beave
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The home is finished. Running Ethernet seems excessive. I would like to avoid moving the cable modem around the house depending on where we are.
My home is finished and I ran 2500ft of ethernet. I did have a partially unfinished basement but it can be easier then one thinks if you just want a few lines, or one or two to put in wired access points. My point is don't rule it completely out, yes it will be harder but the end result is much better. What router are you using now BTW?
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There isn't an unfinished portion of my basement. Pulling cable would be a huge ordeal and I would still have to put some sort of repeater or additional routers for a mesh network which would still add cost. I'm looking for something simple to extend my network affordably. We currently have a Netgear C3700 which is on our providers approved list.

I'm open to suggestions on the best approach to provide a reliable signal for mostly wireless devices on the edges of the house. My research suggested a wifi power line system would be better than a wifi repeater.
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Last edited by Beave January 15, 2018 at 04:34 PM.
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Quote from YanksIn2009
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If wireless access is the problem from that part of the home, then setup a wireless access point to the powerline adapter
This is the solution my research suggested and what I'm looking for. There are powerline adapters with an integrated wireless access point.

This was the first google result. https://www.netgear.com/home/products/networking/powerline/PLW1000.aspx

I could buy a cheap powerline adapter system and put a wireless access point on it as well. I'm not a networking expert though. I tend to like integrated devices even though more networking savvy users hate them because of simplicity.

Goal 1) Wifi in the basement where the signal is weak and can't support streaming video.

Goal 2) Maybe be able to plug in a hard Ethernet cable for slightly better speeds.

Again, my research said a powerline adapter system would accomplish this. If thats wrong please point me in the right direction. I'm an engineer so I can learn, but networking just isn't something I've cared to learn. Our previous home had coax and Ethernet wired to every bedroom and living room. It was really easy to put the cable modem and router in the utility box and plug in devices with Ethernet cables at point of use.
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Quote from Beave
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There isn't an unfinished portion of my basement. Pulling cable would be a huge ordeal and I would still have to put some sort of repeater or additional routers for a mesh network which would still add cost. I'm looking for something simple to extend my network affordably. We currently have a Netgear C3700 which is on our providers approved list.

I'm open to suggestions on the best approach to provide a reliable signal for mostly wireless devices on the edges of the house. My research suggested a wifi power line system would be better than a wifi repeater.

An electrician can run a cable for $100 or so in most cases from one floor to the other. It is not usually a big deal unless they are going through multiple floors or fire stops and assuming your main router and runs are in a central location (usually in the basement).
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Last edited by YanksIn2009 January 15, 2018 at 07:16 PM.
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Quote from Beave
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This is the solution my research suggested and what I'm looking for. There are powerline adapters with an integrated wireless access point.

This was the first google result. https://www.netgear.com/home/prod...W1000.aspx

I could buy a cheap powerline adapter system and put a wireless access point on it as well. I'm not a networking expert though. I tend to like integrated devices even though more networking savvy users hate them because of simplicity.

Goal 1) Wifi in the basement where the signal is weak and can't support streaming video.

Goal 2) Maybe be able to plug in a hard Ethernet cable for slightly better speeds.

Again, my research said a powerline adapter system would accomplish this. If thats wrong please point me in the right direction. I'm an engineer so I can learn, but networking just isn't something I've cared to learn. Our previous home had coax and Ethernet wired to every bedroom and living room. It was really easy to put the cable modem and router in the utility box and plug in devices with Ethernet cables at point of use.

Spending $120 plus to do a job half baked that will not only likely yield flaky performance but slow your wifi down by 50% is sort of ridiculous imo. Look to have an electrician run a hard wired ethernet cable for you and you likely can do it for less in many cases. Then a cheap $20 ethernet switch is all you probably need. If you need wifi improved in the location for a tablet or phone, then just add on a cheap wireless access point.

Spending the money to get an extender that somehow is built into the powerline adapter is a waste imo. The 2 have NOTHING to do with one another outside of someone thinking they can combine two devices into one and charge a premium for it.
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#13
I used a powerline adapter (TP-Link AC1200 Wi-Fi Range Extender, AV1200 Powerline Edition, Extra Outlet (TL-WPA8630 KIT) for a few years because the WIFI was always spotty in the finished basement where my husband's office is. It DID improve the signal, but no matter what we did, the speed was no where near advertised, and definitely hit and miss.

After 5 years of avoiding the nightmare that would be fishing wire diagonally through several floors of a fully finished house without attic access, I finally gave in and did it.

I wish wish WISH we had done this years ago. I can't tell you how much better it is.

If you can't bear to go that way, though, the TP-Link was better than nothing.
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Quote from Marcina
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I used a powerline adapter (TP-Link AC1200 Wi-Fi Range Extender, AV1200 Powerline Edition, Extra Outlet (TL-WPA8630 KIT) for a few years because the WIFI was always spotty in the finished basement where my husband's office is. It DID improve the signal, but no matter what we did, the speed was no where near advertised, and definitely hit and miss.

After 5 years of avoiding the nightmare that would be fishing wire diagonally through several floors of a fully finished house without attic access, I finally gave in and did it.

I wish wish WISH we had done this years ago. I can't tell you how much better it is.

If you can't bear to go that way, though, the TP-Link was better than nothing.

Electricians do this sort of thing for a living and they are VERY good at it in my experience. Barring something like multiple fire stops or other obstructions, it usually is around $100 per run point to point (which can be multiple cables as they simply tie the cables together as they fish them through). Considering the improved performance and that powerline adapters can cost half that much or more as it is, it is an absolute no brainer to get the wires run if possible imo. Powerlines adapters should really only be used imo when running a hard wire is too difficult or costly because of the particulars involved in you home construction and the 2 points you are trying to run the wires between.
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Last edited by YanksIn2009 January 15, 2018 at 07:41 PM.
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Quote from YanksIn2009
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Electricians do this sort of thing for a living and they are VERY good at it in my experience. Barring something like multiple fire stops or other obstructions, it usually is around $100 per run point to point (which can be multiple cables as they simply tie the cables together as they fish them through). Considering the improved performance and that powerline adapters can cost half that much or more as it is, it is an absolute no brainer to get the wires run if possible imo. Powerlines adapters should really only be used imo when running a hard wire is too difficult or costly because of the particulars involved in you home construction and the 2 points you are trying to run the wires between.
I agree. The power line I bought on sale cost nearly $100. I wish I had skipped that step and gone directly to wired.
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