As part of the recent home improvements I have been carrying out preparing for the birth of my first child, part of the DIY carried out was to make our flat a little more child friendly. One of the jobs was to get rid or hide as many wire as possible by either pinning them to skirting boards or getting rid of them altogether.
A few of my work colleagues had in the last 12 months started using the power line adapters and it was based on a recommendation from a colleague that I picked up these. So a power line adapter for those who don't know are essentially hubs that you plug into a mains wall socket and it will boost your wireless (Wifi) signal and normally also allow you to plug a wired connection into.
The main advantages for me is that I can tuck my wireless router out of sight as they are often a little unsightly and it also cuts down on the amount of wires I now have on display for little people to pull on and potentially do themselves or the hardware some damage. It also boosts the wireless signal round your home. This has allowed me to stream video at a much higher resolution than was previously possible in my bedroom for example. I am sure those of you living in a house have a few spots where the wireless signal is pretty poor.
You can pick up a 2 pack for about £65 on Amazon at the moment (May 2013) and this represents pretty decent value for money. There are cheaper power line adapters on the market but these for me were worth paying a little more for as they got a good review from a trusted work mate.
Edimax isn't a brand that I have used before, but certainly one I would now consider in the future. The power line adapters are around about the size of a plug that you would normally get with a broadband router.
The adapters apparently support up to 500 Mbps wireless connection, my broadband connection isn't that beefy unfortunately to fully test out the capabilities of this claim. After running some before and after speed tests, I found that my wireless connection in the lounge was as good as if I was connecting to the hub itself. As previously mentioned it improved considerably in the bedroom too. There is also support for a wired gigabit connection. If I was you, I would stick one of these plugs next to every TV you have in your home if you use something like Netflix or online game to ensure you get a strong, reliable connection.
These are very simple to set up also. You just need to take them out of the packet, plug them in and then power them up. There is then a small button on the bottom of each plug that you push to set up your secure connection. This is the 'Group' button.
There is a CD that comes with the devices which allows you to do some advanced set up and configuration. For most users this will not be required. You should only need to use the CD if you want to connection the Edimax adapters with some other adapters from a different manufacturer.
I now have my router tucked away in a cupboard where the line comes into the flat and I have 2 of the power line adapters, one in the lounge and one in the bedroom. I know have better wireless coverage across the flat. It used to find that I was unable to steam video in the bedroom, but having this power line adapters have solved those problems.
I have been using these for about 3 months now I would recommend these to family and friends and once I move somewhere bigger I will certainly be investing in a few more of these to extend my wireless network. Easy to set up and they have been very reliable so far.
If your home or office does not have Ethernet cables installed in the wall and you dislike the idea of unsightly external cabling running all over the place, use the Edimax HP-5001 500 Mbps PowerLine Ethernet adapter to turn the existing electrical wires in your home or office into a high-speed network connection.
The HP-5001 can transmit network data over existing electrical wires at speeds of up to 500 Mbps. It is also backward compatible with the 200 Mbps HomePlug AV standard. Additionally, the HP-5001 is built with a high-speed Gigabit Ethernet port.
|Product Description:||Edimax HP-5001 - bridge|
|Packaged Quantity:||2 (specifications are for single item)|
|Data Link Protocol:||Ethernet, Fast Ethernet, Gigabit Ethernet, HomePlug AV (HPAV), IEEE 1901|
|Data Transfer Rate:||500 Mbps|
|Features:||IPv6 support, Quality of Service (QoS), reset button|
|Compliant Standards:||IEEE 802.3, IEEE 802.3u, IEEE 802.3ab, HomePlug 1.0, HomePlug AV 1.1, HomePlug AV, IEEE 1901|
|Power:||AC 120/230 V ( 50 - 60 Hz )|
|Dimensions (WxDxH):||5.5 cm x 3.3 cm x 9 cm|
|System Requirements:||Microsoft Windows 2000/XP/Vista/7|