* Prices may differ from that shown
Ok, as with many of my tech reviews, people may not know what the devices actually are so here is a quick summary. These network bridges are essentially a wireless extension for an Ethernet cable, it is as simple as that. They are used if, for example, you have your router upstairs and you want to use something downstairs which doesn't have built in WiFi; You usually have two main options in this scenario, either buy an Ethernet-WiFi adapter to make the device wireless (However this has the issue of not being compatible) or you can buy one of these Ethernet extenders which will be compatible with EVERYTHING which uses Ethernet for the networking - as far as the device is concerned, it cannot tell the difference between being connected to an Ethernet cable coming from one of these extenders or an Ethernet cable coming straight from a device which is only a metre or so away from it. The second method does have one major downside though, price - at £40 this extension pack is far more than adapters which can be picked up for as little as £5 (I myself actually recently bought a very good quality one for just under £8).
Now that the explanations is out of the way, lets talk about this bridge specifically.
Setup with this bridge is very simple. Simply connect an Ethernet cable from each of the adapters into your router and into your networking device, then stick the bridges into any power adapter and enjoy wireless Ethernet cabling!
Any power socket can be used; upstairs, downstairs, hallways, garages and so on. I have suffered no issues with range in my own house however I am unsure about how very large houses would cope as I have no idea of the actual working range. The majority of people will have no trouble whatsoever though!
I have suffered no drop-outs, interference or any trouble whatsoever from the wireless tansfer between these bridges - they are very reliable in my experience.
The devices themselves have been built very well. They feel solid and the design is pretty low profile; I would still like them to be a bit thinner and closer to the wall to prevent them being knocked by people walking past, however they are much thinner than other models I have seen.
This model offers 128-bit AES encryption which will help to keep your data safe from any hackers which may be lurking around your house (For some reason). Although the chance of anybody even being able to detect the wireless signal, let along intercept it, is extremely low, having encryption of this strength means that even if they do, you are very safe using it.
This model boasts speeds of up to 200Mbps transfer between the sockets. Please ignore this completely and never base your purchasing decision on this. It is purely marketing hype. You are going to see no performance increase whatsoever in buying this over one advertised at just 100Mbps as this is far higher than any of us (I assume) are getting supplied by our Internet Service Providers (ISPs) and therefore the bridges cannot transfer data that it hasn't received yet. As long as this number is higher than what you receive from your ISP, the adapter is good for you. However, having a higher number does make it more future proof as speeds increase.
This model, in my opinion, tries to impress with high numbers which catch out people with little knowledge. The manufacturers aim to charge higher prices for better technology even though it is really unnecessary and the average consumer does not actually need it. In my opinion, any bridge over your ISPs speed and any bridge with any form of encryption is sufficient. However, this is still not to say that you shouldn't buy this bridge as it is still very reliable and has given me no trouble whatsoever, the biggest issue really is the unnecessary price tag.
I never really needed an extra internet connection at my house. My cable internet was upstairs going straight into my PC, and my wireless router (G) served my laptop downstairs adequately. This changed when I bought a PS3.
When looking at the PS3's spec, I saw 'wireless' and was happy that I could have it on my HDTV downstairs and be able to play online, stream media and download content easily. However, it turns out that my wireless connection tends to drop out a bit - not bad for browsing, not good for gaming. I needed a more reliable option.
A friend told be about these home plugs - to be honest, the 'Max Value' brand put me off a bit. He assured me though, so I took the plunge - and boy am I glad I did.
They may not win any aesthetic design awards - but these plugs are functional and are literally 'plug and play'. One plug went upstairs - into the power socket, and then connected to the router with a standard ethernet cable. The second plug went downstairs - again into the power socket, and then connected to the PS3 with an ethernet cable. That's it! It does come with a CD-ROM with software and drivers, but I didn't use it at all.
The internet connection using these is faultless - just the same as my PC which is connected directly to the modem. I get no lags with online gaming, media streams from my PC faultlessly, and demo downloads no longer take ages.
Keep your eye on the price of these as it tends to fluctuate - I picked them up for £50 from Amazon just before Xmas. Also, I've read a few reviews where people have plugged them into extension cables, surge protectors etc and suffered slow speeds. Keep this in mind - it's best to use them directly in the wall sockets.