Often a tall or wide building has problems receiving a Wi-Fi signal from a single point, one solution is power over Ethernet giving a connection to a loft or other far flung place but this could still cause problems with anything that is handheld as signals can be lost. Another possible solution is what I am looking at here Zyxel Multi U.
It works in a different way, one unit is connected to your router and can then connect to the next unit and even a third unit but if the signal is stronger from the third to the first it find this so the three units work together with all movements being transparent. For those who still need Ethernet each unit has the ability to connect via that, so not only can you roam around with a handheld device anything that is static can be connected via cable.
Some of us reside in an environment that could be best referred to as one that is based on the Internet of Things (IoT) with interactive devices everywhere.
As more IoT devices arrive and are added to the equation, we are being encouraged to hand over control of our living environment to objects whose prime concern seems to be their ability to interact and communicate with each other.
With 5 antennas and a slot for SIM card entry, this router caught my attention.
As a global provider of networking solutions and appropriate accessories, TP-Link has a large catalogue of offerings. I recently have had the opportunity to try out one of the company’s product. This offering is the AC750 Archer MR200. This product is a Wireless Dual Band 4G LTE Router and it is the subject matter of this review for Gadgetspeak.com.
Power over Wi-Fi, range extenders and Wi-Fi Extenders are all ways to allow you to get a signal where you may not be able to do so normally, here an offering from Devolo called Magic 2 to allow places that otherwise would need a carrier pigeon to get information in or out help to allow you to stay in touch. Be it loft or basement you can now have connection.
The Devolo Magic 2 Whole Home Wi-Fi Kit consists of three units which each connect to a mains outlet. First the master that needs to be placed near your Modem it is 13x6.5x5cm and has an Ethernet port on the top of the unit and a 13amp plug on the face so whatever was in that socket before you plugged in the Devolo Magic LAN can still be inserted without affecting the Devolo.
When turning your home into a Smart environment, a Home Control Starter Pack, such as the product developed by Devolo, could be an appropriate route to take when enhancing certain features
As its title suggests, the Devolo Home Control Starter Pack offers to be your opening gambit when building a Smart Home environment. This Starter Pack consists of three main elements. These are the Central Unit, Smart Metering Plug and a two-piece Door / Window Contact unit.
Looking to add some extra power to a home network you might want to consider the Armor Z2.
While maybe not having the high profile and public acceptance of some other companies, ZyXEL has regularly produced some impressive products. One of these is the Armor Z2 offering. This is a dual-band 802.11ac wireless router. Although targeted specific at the gaming fraternity, this product can also provide useful facilities for those who do not regularly immerse themselves in the all-enveloping environment of modern gaming.
Where Wi-Fi cannot reach there is an alternative to a very long Ethernet lead and that is using power sockets to transfer the signals. Providing the router and the external point are on the same ring main you can get a strong signal it could be your basement, loft or garage.
I was sent a single box that contains two Powerline Adapters it is called a starter kit and this contains all you need to get that out of Wi-Fi spot back into use. The kit has two adapters the one to connect to your router is slightly larger at 14x7x6cm and this has three Ethernet Gigabit ports on the top, the other smaller unit is 13x6.5x5cm and has one Ethernet port on the top.
Over time descriptive terms can come to have different meanings. I am thinking in particular of “smart home”. While my parents would have taken “smart home” to mean a place that was neat and tidy without needing any decorating, you and I, as member of the current generation, would use the term when describing the plethora of interlinked devices within the modern home.
In some cases a modern “smart home” could be regarded as a one-stop shop with all the various elements belonging to a single brand but this is not always possible. For a variety of reasons, some users opt to mix devices from different brands which can cause communication problems. Offering to help ease any communication issues between devices of different pedigrees is the UK developed nCube product.
Just how smart is smart? Your home may contain any number of devices that claim to be smart but do you really trust them to respond in an appropriate manner when they receive instructions, especially when the instructions emanate remotely from an outside source not under your control. It could happen.
The current big topic, referred to as IoT or Internet of Things, is for all your household goods, whether fridges, kettles, lights and even air purifiers, are all interconnected and remotely accessible via the Internet and a mobile device.
This item from Netgear even looks sinister as you remove it from the black box that this switch comes in. The matt black finish and the areas made up of triangles and rectangles add to the illusion that this device is somehow not a friendly one, add to that the dark blue ‘V’ of LED light when switched on it becomes more menacing.
It is 19.5x14.5x3.7cm before anything is plugged in to the rear of it, so add another 3cm to the middle figure the depth. It weighs 765grams main because the case is Zinc-Alloy. The base has four small 1.5x1cm rubber feet to make sure it stays flat on your table or desk and it has to be used in this way as unlike some routers it is only stable in this formation.
Carrying a WiFi hotspot is your pocket is made possible by this next device.
A saying, probably more relevant now that during my youth, stated that you could never find a policeman when you wanted one. Nowadays you could probably say the same thing about Wi-Fi hotspots unless you wanted a cup of coffee. Fortunately, while carrying a police officer in your pocket is not really possible, a mobile hotspot could be a distinct possibility.
The NETGEAR Nighthawk X4S is an AC2600 Smart WiFi router. I have been looking at the latest R7800 model of this particular device. It offers the user quad-stream X4S architecture for use with advanced gaming and streaming features on your LAN.
Following the standard NETGEAR plinth shaped appearance, combining a plastic matte black base with a dark grey top, the Nighthawk X4S has dimensions of 285 x 185 x 50 mm (W x D x H). To gain the full benefit of this router you will need to attach the provided four antennas. These antennas can be screwed into sockets that are positioned on either side of the unit and along the rear of the router.
If I said Master Socket few would know I was referring to how your Ethernet connection should be connected, if you have problems with slow speed or lots of time your line drops it’s the first thing the phone engineer will talk about.
It seems that the only thing that should connect to your Master Socket is your Modem or Modem/Router. Phones should only connect via secondary sockets, of course this is not a problem if everything connects via Wi-Fi and everything is well in range. Only once you satisfy these criteria will BT or whoever your ISP is will then look to see if the problem is elsewhere. A pair of Orbi routers can be the answer, in my case they are.
NETGEAR has recently released a combination of router and satellite to help boost network traffic but you need to provide the modem.
Recently released by NETGEAR, the Orbi™ WiFi System promises to provide high-speed WiFi throughout buildings of up to 4,000 square feet in area. This kit consists of units that are designated as the router element and a satellite which make use of tri-band technology. You also get appropriate power lead and an Ethernet cable. You will need to provide a modem for the required Internet connection.
Offering to add VDSL / ADSL Internet connectivity to your router-based LAN set up is a NETGEAR modem.
Supplied in undistinguished packaging made up of a rather plain cardboard box, the DM200 is a Broadband high speed DSL modem from NETGEAR. This product acts as the link up connection device between the vast virtual world, known as the Internet, and your router and / or computer. The DM200 product offers the user VDSL / ADSL Internet access.
Netgear’s Nighthawk X4 dual band AC2200 extender can be used to deliver high throughput as either a WiFi range extender or as an access point to deliver WiFi to a remote area when it is connected to the router via an Ethernet cable.
The X4 operates on both both 2.4 and 5G bands and employs MU-MIMO (Multiple User, Multiple Input, Multiple Output) technology which is claimed to be able to provide a aggregate throughput of 2,200Mbps. This, understandably, will only apply when used in conjunction with a MU-MIMO router. White in colour it has ventilation holes on every surface with the exception of the front. It is 16cm tall and 8.5cm wide and has the 13A plug at the lowest point on its rear surface.
The Kensington USB 3.0 hub model UA3000E provides three USB 3.0 ports as well as a Gigabit Ethernet connection and so could be a useful add on to a netbook or laptop which lacks necessary ports.
The UA3000E is a small unit which is compatible with both Windows and Macs. It will take up very little room in a laptop bag and will provide much useful connectivity. It is black in colour, weighs just 68g, is 105mm x 45 x 25mm in size and has heavily chamfered edges which give the impression that it is smaller than it actually is. The three USB 3.0 ports are along one side and, at one end, is the Gigabit Ethernet. At the other end is the 10cm long USB 3.0 cable to connect to the laptop.
There are lots of advantages for Wi-Fi perhaps the most compelling for most will be the lack of trailing wires, so how do you get Wi-Fi to work when you are close or perhaps even just beyond the normal coverage given by your router.
A lot of my sockets are on the shirting board so that means anything that juts out below the plug itself are not directly connectable without the aid of an extension lead. I know newer properties have the standard of all/most plug points being at waist level but a short extension lead in the box would have been useful and in my home anyway most plugs are utilized so a pass through might help those with newer properties. It is 16x8x4.5cm at the base of the unit it is slightly less higher up.
This next product adds WiFi functionality to a Powerline solution.
While WiFi is often the chosen option of many when setting up a home network with the minimum of disruption, this method is not always totally suitable for certain dwellings with walls getting in the way and blocking the passage of the wireless signal. In such instances you might prefer going with a solution that helps circumvent the problem caused by blocking walls while still retaining some of the benefits of WiFi.
If you need to extend the range of the WiFi signal used by your network then there is a choice of products including the NETGEAR Nighthawk™ X4.
That old chestnut of a question that asks “How long is a piece of string?” could well be adapted to apply to the WiFi signal in your WLAN. “How wide is the range of your WiFi?” The answer will depend on the circumstances regarding the layout of your home and the surrounding environment. Distances and signal strengths could be affected by the number, thickness and constitution of walls and other blockages plus household applications.