Wi-Fi will always be the bottleneck in any home or office network. It’s hard to control its range and signal reliability over distances and could easily degenerate expensive broadband into a pain. This is especially so if you are serving multiple devices or your setting spans considerable distances that naturally attenuate the signal strength.
Keeping the Wi-Fi Signal Strength at its Best
The best way to boosting your Wi-Fi signal, if router placement has failed to solve the problem, lies in buying the right Wi-Fi signal booster. The investment could improve your investment immensely. It could mean that you no longer have to avoid dead spots when streaming Netflix or on Skype.
The Wi-Fi extender receives the signal from your router, amplifies it and broadcasts it to devices away. This could be your basement, the upper floors or rooms far away from the router. The Wi-Fi extender should be within the router’s strong signal range so that it can boost a clear signal to outlying devices.
Choosing your Wi-Fi Extender
You Wi-Fi extender must be compatible with the router. There is WiFi A, B, G and N. If your router broadcasts anything lower than N, you should consider replacing the router too. You will also need to get 2.4GHz and/or 5GHz compatible extender depending on your router’s broadcasting capabilities.
Lastly, check the extender’s speeds. It would be pointless to go for an expensive 1200Mbps AC (latest standard) if your router or bandwidth needs cannot achieve such speeds.
Other things to consider include:
- If you can connect wired devices through a couple of LAN ports on the extender
- USB sockets to attach network printers or HDDs
- Audio output to connect to audio system and stream music from computer or phone
- Your budget
Three Impressive Bargains to Consider
Last updated on Oct 22, 2016 12:40 pm EDT
The D-Link DAP-1320 is a modest simple setup wireless range extender that can support up to 300Mbps Wi-Fi connections. The device is backward compatible meaning it will work with anything below Wi-Fi N.
Linksy AC 1200
This dual band 2.4GHz & 5GHz wireless extender is Wireless-AC certified and compatible with all a/b/g/n devices. It’s support for the latest AC convention makes it a perfect solution for people using the latest routers or gateways. An intelligent algorithm lets the extender use the dual-band connections to achieve higher speeds on higher node load networks.
This is ideal if you are thinking of smartphones, game console, smart TV and a network HDD. The simple Wi-Fi extender sits snug on a wall power socket and even provides an inbuilt port to ensure that socket can still be used by other devices. A USB 3.0 port allows you to connect storage media to the network while Ethernet ports come in handy when you are considering plugging in some wired devices to the network. The wireless extender supports 2.5GHz and 5GHz networks on the AC750 standards and can handle up to 750Mbps.