Using powerlines for Wi-fi extending

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  1. reddwarf4ever's Avatar
    Posts : 1,244
    windows 10 PRO
       #1

    Using powerlines for Wi-fi extending


    I am looking at TP-Link TL-WPA8730KIT, but need another extender, d-link tell me I can use ANY extender, does this mean the Wi-fi strength and protocol (801-ac) resides only in the sender unit and it doesnít matter which extender you use the Wi-fi will be as strong as the extender that comes with the kit.....very difficult to get definitive answers, even d-link live chat isnít much good

    the internet is a basic phone line supply, so not sure if the powerline I listed is overkill.....my other thought was to run a cable from the router to the other end of the house and buy a router to convert to WAP, it again I donít know if I should buy an expensive router £80-£90 or use an old one, as this may well be sufficient. The Wi-fi is used for amazon prime video mainly and some browsing, no gaming.

    have researched this a lot, but canít fimd any useful answers

    thanks
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  2. Posts : 1,980
    Windows 10
       #2

    You won't get any definitive answer as house wiring is meant to carry power not the type of signal used by powerline adapters, results will vary depending on house wiring.
    See note 1. on the TP-link detail.

    It is always better to use Ethernet cable which was designed for the job.

    You have to look forward if you are buying new stuff, which basically means Wireless up to ac standard, something like 2 x 2, 2 x 3 etc. These are backwards compatible with older b/g/n standards.

    The ones you have referenced seem to be one with 1Gbps network port, and the other with a WAP ac standard.

    They are not overkill as the Wireless speed matches up to the wired speed.
    The real Wireless speed will be maybe 1/2 to 2/3 of the max theoretical they quote.

    "powerline transfer speed of up to 1200Mbps" That is the bit with the Note 1. and is up to depending on your house wiring.

    Whilst at the moment you may not need the speed. If you add in say a Network drive or something then that will benefit from the Gbps speed.

    This is all your own Network speed, and is separate from internet speed.
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  3. RickC's Avatar
    Posts : 708
    Windows 10 Pro (+ Windows 10 Home VMs for testing)
       #3

    My experience, sadly, is that you can't just use any EOP (Ethernet Over Power) extenders with any reliability and some EOP manufacturer's kit does not play well with the kit from other EOP manufacturers, even though Powerline/HomePlug is supposed to a 'standard'.

    Worse, when you have a problem, each manufacturer's support will invariably blame the other manufacturer's kit, never their own. My advice is to choose one EOP manufacturer and stick with it.

    I've used EOP kit from D-Link, TP-Link and BT. Only the the BT kit is still in everyday use, although I do keep a 4-yr-old D-Link EOP set in my toolkit to demonstrate Powerline to people new to EOP. I've never used Devolo EOP kit... the manager at my local Maplins store advised me to stay well away from Devolo when I first returned the TP-Link EOP kit to him, hence why I ended up getting the far more expensive BT EOP kit.

    Have a look at this post for background info. It describes how I replaced Edimax wifi extenders then couldn't get TP-Link EOP replacements to connect with BT500 EOP kit. I ended up using just BT EOP kit and 5 years down the line the BT EOP kit is still going strong.

    Have a look at this post for more info about using EOP. Note that there's little point buying 1200Mbps EOP kit to stream video via an incoming ADSL broadband connection. Why pay over the odds for fast internal kit if you already have a bottleneck at the entrance? If, for example, you have a DLNA media server on your LAN then it makes a bit more sense to get faster EOP kit if you have several client devices that are all going to be in use at the same time.

    Note also that I found EOP wifi extenders tend to have small internal buffers so you may need to power-cycle them regularly to flush the buffers. My friend with the BT EOP kit has to power-cycle the BT500 wifi extender unit in her kitchen about once a month because it's the focal point for family life and now has up to 6 people all with smartphones and tablets all connected via wifi at the same time. Basically the EOP unit's buffer occasionally gets swamped... but a power-cycle sorts it for another month. New kit may be better...

    Perhaps do an Amazon.uk search for bt powerline wifi extender for comparison? Whatever you do, only buy from a supplier who will refund you without if the kit doesn't work. My experience is that EOP is 100% reliant on the state of your electrical circuitry but, when it works, it's excellent and much more convenient than trying to route CAT5e/6 cabling, especially between floors. (Pay particular attention here 'cos different floors are on different ring mains so often present a challenge that just doesn't happen when EOP kit is all used on the same floor, i.e. same ring main. Don't plug EOP adapters into mains extender cables either... just doesn't work. )

    Hope this helps...

    EDIT: Oops... almost forgot. Note that TP-Link is a Chinese company. During my many emails to-and-from TP-Link Support there were times when some information was 'lost in translation'. Not the support staff's fault at all... I don't speak a single word of Chinese so hats off to them all, they did an amazing job communicating.

    The one thing that I couldn't get my head around was that every email was answered by a different member of support staff... who never once read previous emails. I became tired of writing the same things over and over again, especially as some of the issues were quite technical in nature.
    Last edited by RickC; 12 Mar 2019 at 09:19.
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  4. Posts : 364
    Windows 10
       #4

    I have used a TP-Link Powerline AV500 (one extender) system for 4 years, 24/7. Not a single problem.
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  5. Infrasonic's Avatar
    Posts : 245
    W10 Home Version 20H2 Build 19042.928
       #5

    ...my other thought was to run a cable from the router to the other end of the house and buy a router to convert to WAP...
    You could do, or a better idea would be to stick a decent made for the job WAP on the end like a ubiquiti or similar.
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  6. reddwarf4ever's Avatar
    Posts : 1,244
    windows 10 PRO
    Thread Starter
       #6

    Hi
    so,e really useful advice, thanks so much for taking the time, as I am doing this for a relative , I need to get it right, especially as they are not local to me.
    This comment
    Why pay over the odds for fast internal kit if you already have a bottleneck at the entrance”
    thats exactly what I was thinking, if the supply is poor, then no amount of super fast Hi tech hardware is going to speed things up.
    which is why I want to get the balance right, the best that can be hoped for, in the future is Fibre over the phone line.
    The property is largely 18th century, so house wiring could well be an issue. I get so many contrary info on the internet about powerline adapters and different ring mains, some say, so long as it’s on the same Phase and fuse box it will jump ring circuits, others say it won’t.
    My gut feeling is to buy a reasonable router 11ac possibly, but one with a built in Access Point mode ( WAP ) should be better than my buying a router and configuring it, I assume anyway. Although I may try with a dlink DIR-635 first, converted to WAP and see how it compares to the present situation........

    presently one side of the house is being supplied Wi-fi using a powerline adapter supplied free by the ISP, been told it doesn’t give a very good signal strength, have asked to do speed tests from main router and from powerline adapter extender at the other side of the house.

    Re
    You could do, or a better idea would be to stick a decent made for the job WAP on the end like a ubiquiti or similar. Had a look, assume this connects to the router via Ethernet, the description and pictures don’t show much...
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  7. RickC's Avatar
    Posts : 708
    Windows 10 Pro (+ Windows 10 Home VMs for testing)
       #7

    reddwarf4ever said:
    The property is largely 18th century, so house wiring could well be an issue. I get so many contrary info on the internet about powerline adapters and different ring mains, some say, so long as itís on the same Phase and fuse box it will jump ring circuits, others say it wonít.
    The age of the building isn't an issue, just the state of the electrics. Too old - or possibly too new - could be an issue. More than 25 years old and there'll be cable degradation which adds electrical noise. Normally this isn't a problem 'cos it doesn't interfere with power-carrying. However, electrical noise can play havoc with EOP. I understand that some really new home builds have power smoothing/filtering built-in to the consumer units, in the same way as some mains adapters with filter protection. This filtering can cause problems (but these types of builds tend to be CAT6-wired from new. My ex- has moved into a new house and I'm envious of the network points in every room plus two in the lounge).

    I rewired my house completely 14 years ago to add more double sockets and get rid of spurs. The consumer unit that replaced the old fuse box causes no problems with EOP at all (although I wish I had chosen MCB rather than ELCB... less twitchy if a tiny little decorative wall light blows and plunges the house into darkness). That's why I said to make sure you can return the kit if necessary. It won't be the fault of the EOB kit... it will be the electrical circuit(s).

    Hope this helps...
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  8. Infrasonic's Avatar
    Posts : 245
    W10 Home Version 20H2 Build 19042.928
       #8

    Re You could do, or a better idea would be to stick a decent made for the job WAP on the end like a ubiquiti or similar. Had a look, assume this connects to the router via Ethernet, the description and pictures donít show much...
    Scroll down to the first customer review, who lives in a large victorian house and has not only given it a 5 star review but also listed the entire installation and setup process...
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  9. reddwarf4ever's Avatar
    Posts : 1,244
    windows 10 PRO
    Thread Starter
       #9

    Infrasonic said:
    Scroll down to the first customer review, who lives in a large victorian house and has not only given it a 5 star review but also listed the entire installation and setup process...
    Yes I saw that, sounds very promising,I assume that will a lot better than the free netgear router from the ISP...
    may very well give that a try. Mounting it up near the ceiling should help also ??

    thanks
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  10. reddwarf4ever's Avatar
    Posts : 1,244
    windows 10 PRO
    Thread Starter
       #10

    RickC said:
    The age of the building isn't an issue, just the state of the electrics. Too old - or possibly too new - could be an issue. More than 25 years old and there'll be cable degradation which adds electrical noise. Normally this isn't a problem 'cos it doesn't interfere with power-carrying. However, electrical noise can play havoc with EOP. I understand that some really new home builds have power smoothing/filtering built-in to the consumer units, in the same way as some mains adapters with filter protection. This filtering can cause problems (but these types of builds tend to be CAT6-wired from new. My ex- has moved into a new house and I'm envious of the network points in every room plus two in the lounge).

    I rewired my house completely 14 years ago to add more double sockets and get rid of spurs. The consumer unit that replaced the old fuse box causes no problems with EOP at all (although I wish I had chosen MCB rather than ELCB... less twitchy if a tiny little decorative wall light blows and plunges the house into darkness). That's why I said to make sure you can return the kit if necessary. It won't be the fault of the EOB kit... it will be the electrical circuit(s).

    Hope this helps...
    I think https://www.amazon.co.uk/Ubiquiti-Ne...RA9JRT6M8GC2VS

    looks very promising, I myself did a similar thing with My house, during an extension build I ran cat5e cables to every room, so much easier having cable sockets everywhere.....use a switch box from one socket, which supplies PC XBOX laptop, with no problems.....although the man in feed is Virgin cable 100mb, so that helps a lot.

    think I will try the Ubiquiti, hopefully nothing to tweak and givien the Very very old house wiring in the house itís intended for, plus need to Ďjumpí across ring mains, powerline adapters may Not be the way to go.

    will almost definitely get a Ubiquiti, ( any other alternative suggestions for a Dedictaed WAP ?, whatís the difference in a very good router with a WAP option ?

    thanks

    UPDATE
    https://www.amazon.co.uk/Ubiquiti-Ne...JMT77Y52NFJ6SF

    this s described as long range but cheaper than the PRO, would it be better at covering a whole house ?

    found an 800 word review of Ubiquiti access points and although highly configurable, the Apple AirPort Extreme came out better but slightly more expensive, but I canít seem to find this on amazon
    Last edited by reddwarf4ever; 12 Mar 2019 at 20:47.
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