Wired: Wireless Access Points Vs Wired Extenders
A device that connects to an existing network using a wired connection and creates a new WiFi network is known as a wireless access point . Keep in mind: WAPs are sometimes referred to as wired extenders.
The fundamental difference between a WAP and a wireless extender is that WAPs use wired backhaul and create a new wireless local area network . The wired connection will generally have more throughput and be more reliable. A new WLAN will also minimize congestion and interference issues relative to the wireless extender approach.
The downside to using a WAP is obvious: you must run a cable. Getting a cable where you need it isn’t always practical even if you are knowledgeable about cabling.
- Dedicated WLAN avoids throughput, interference, and latency issues of wireless extenders
- The need for a cable limits placement flexibility
Do Wifi Boosters Work
WiFi boosters work exemplary when it comes to increasing signal strength and further increasing your WiFi range. A good WiFi booster can easily increase the range by +50%. There is however a diminishing return in the WiFi signal. So itll not be viable to place additional WiFi boosters to reach even further.
I wouldnt suggest going beyond 2 boosters within one local network/house. You should here consider using a wired extender instead. A wired extender can go beyond +100 meters without any significant loss in signal.
I tried using 3 boosters, but in my case, the third WiFi booster didnt do anything really, two was plenty.
Wifi Extender Broadcasts Signal
Once the WiFi extender is connected to the router, it will broadcast its own wireless signal through its external antennas, acting like a wireless access point allowing laptops, smartphones, tablets, smart TVs, and game consoles to connect to it.
Since the extender is broadcasting its own signal, it’s almost like having another wireless router in your home. Therefore, the extender will have its own WiFi network name .
Also Check: Two Wifi Routers On Same Network
How Do Wifi Extenders Work
A typical Wireless range extender expands its coverage by capturing the current wireless range, improving its strength through different available channels and send it across a wider area within your home or office.
For instance, imagine you are studying in your room on the second floor of your building with your WiFi router installed on the first floor. You want to connect your laptop or mobile, but its hard to get past the hindrances.
A WiFi Extender is a perfect solution to curb this problem which, when switched on, lets you connect to the router wirelessly.
Finding The Right Spot: Hide And Seek
If you cant find a good location for the extender, you might need to use an AC extension cord to get the extender to where it works best. Try things like putting the extender on top of a bookshelf or on an armoire.If the extender has adjustable antennas, you can reposition them to get the best signal. Even better, if the wireless booster has removable antennas, you might try swapping them for higher gain or amplified antennas to boost their sensitivity. Alternatively, you can try using a Wi-Fi reflector or making one yourself out of aluminum foil or an empty soda can to direct the Wi-Fi signal to where it needs to go.
Don’t Miss: How To See Wifi Password In Mac
Determine If A Range Extender Will Help
Do you actually need a Wifi Extender or a Router Upgrade or Placement Optimization? The first rule of thumb router wifi extender is really an extension of your router, but if the source is bad or old, having a Super Fast Wifi extender will not help much speed or performance. It can actually potentially make your wifi connection worse or slower than before.
Consider upgrading your router first if your router is old or slow using older speed standards. For example, at the time of writing this guide, you should upgrade your router if you are still using a 802.11G only connection. Consider upgrading to a router setup with N / AC may be the best as AC is the highest accepted standard at the time of writing.
Next, consider optimizing your routers physical location if possible. Consult our Router Placement Guide for some practical tips. After you have made sure that your home router is running optimally with decent upgrades, you should then consider setup Wifi Extenders to cover the deadspots around your household.
Finally, because of the performance issues that occur with having Range Extenders, you should almost never setup multiple wifi Range extenders within the same area. As the signals that they transmit can interfere with each other.
Do Wifi Boosters Actually Work
Yes! As long as you have a signal coming into your home, the booster will amplify that signal up to 32 times. Many things block and weaken signals in your home – walls, furniture, appliances – a booster creates a stronger signal that will transmit through or around obstacles. WiFi boosters allow you to work in areas of your house, building or yard that have dead spots or are farther away from the router.
Don’t Miss: How To Connect An Ipad To Wifi
Will A Wifi Booster Stop Buffering
A WiFi booster can definitely help in stopping buffering in videos and songs. But your WiFi booster needs to be solving the correct issue. If your issue isnt signal strength but maybe the internet speed, its not sure if a WiFi booster will do anything well.
You need to identify the issues youre having before trying out a WiFi booster. Are you a long way from the router? Are there big obstacles between you and the router? Is there anything interfering with the WiFi signal? Are there any other WiFis in the area? If none of the above is an issue, a WiFi booster will probably not stop the buffering.
Upstairs Downstairs: Better Signal In Multistory Homes
If you have a ranch house or a single-floor apartment, you should be home-free. However, when setting up an extender for a floor above or below the router , youll need to take account of the extra height and all the wood, steel and plaster in your floors and ceilings building materials that can absorb part of the Wi-Fi signal. Solve this by moving the extender closer to the router than you might if both devices were on the same floor. In fact, it often works best in multi-story situations if the router and extender are roughly above or below each other.
You May Like: Can I Set Up Two Routers In My House
How To Setup A Wifi Extender
Generally speaking, there are a couple of different setup approaches for WiFi Extenders. One lets you press a WiFi Protected Setup button on your wireless router and on the WiFi Extender, and they connect to each other automatically.
This simplified setup relies on you having a WPS-compatible wireless router and WiFi Extender, which may not be the case if you have an older or lower-end router .
The more complicated approach involves connecting to the WiFi Extender and manually connecting it to your home network, much the same as you would with a new wireless device you want to get online. Certain models may create a duplicate WiFi access point, which means you have to connect relevant wireless devices to that network to benefit from the boosted coverage.
Better WiFi Extenders keep the WiFi access point uniform throughout the home, meaning wireless devices configured to connect to your wireless router will automatically connect to the WiFi router when you start moving out of its optimal range.
Prime placement during setup is key, whether youre using a desktop or powerline WiFi Extender. As mentioned earlier, placing a WiFi Extender at the extreme, one-bar range of your current wireless network will only boost the signal at that strength. In the same breath, you dont want to place it so close to the wireless router that you might as well have not bought it.
Simple Tips To Boost Your Wifi
Tired of videos buffering when youre binge watching on Netflix? Are there places in your home where surfing speeds slow down to a crawl? The broadband plan you signed up for promises blazing fast speeds, but thats not what you are getting in the living room. Sometimes a simple change in your home network can crank up the speed and make a huge improvement on your surfing, streaming, and gaming experience. If youre suffering with slow speeds and patchy Wi-Fi coverage, here are several things to try to boost WiFi:
Recommended Reading: Forgotten Wifi Password Mac
Location Of Wifi Router
To enhance your internet connection, move the router to a central location if possible. Sometimes the router cant be moved because there are other wired devices connected to it or the router is connected to a modem that can’t be moved. In these cases, a longer network cable might be useful.
Moving the router can help extend the WiFi range, reduce dead spots, and lessen the number of obstacles that can interfere with the signal. Also, check if your router is up-to-date. If you have an older model, upgrade to a new router with the latest WiFi standards for improved speeds.
Can You Buy Portable Wifi
The most simple solution to portable WiFi is your phone. With your phone, you can create a WiFi hotspot to share your mobile data. There is also a solution you can buy, like something called a MiFi router. A MiFi router is a mobile WiFi that can take a sim card and create a WiFi hotspot for several devices to connect to. Typically a MiFi router also comes with a battery. A good MiFi router can hold up to 20 hours before needing a recharge.
Recommended Reading: Is There Wifi On Southwest Flights
Are Wifi Repeaters And Wifi Extenders The Same
It is obvious that both Wi-Fi extender and Wi-Fi repeaters are similar in many respects. But they are different in their behaviour. A WiFi extender performs by pulling the reception from a router before relaying it to a device. While doing this, it is not transmitting the coverage using the same type of network name as the initial wireless network. For instance, if original or initial network is known as WirelessNet1 the booster will produce a new network name such as WirelessNet2. For your device to connect to the internet as desired, it must connect to WirelessNet2.
On other hand, the Wi-Fi repeater will work in slightly different manner. The repeater works by repeating the signal received even as the transmission is relayed to a wireless device. It means you will be using a similar wireless network ID as you initially began with. It is also worth noting that lots of boosters actually come with the option of using a Wi-Fi extender as a Wi-Fi repeater. Depending on the Wi-Fi booster it might be as easy as changing the settings allowing you to use a single SSID or network name. You can also find a WiFi extender allowing for multiple SSIDs or network names with unique and separate passes.
How Far Do Wi
Some Wi-Fi extenders are said to be capable of covering an area of up to 3,000 square feet. Its important to note though, that the actual effective range can vary based on each use case. Variables can include physical obstructions like walls, the materials they are constructed of, the thickness of any obstructions, and other radio signals around your home interfering with your router.
Youll also want to also consider the range of your router itself. This could range from 500-1500 square feet.
Access to the internet from a device is based on many factors. These factors are vital to understanding why your internet connection is slow and just how slow it is:
- The actual speed of the Wi-Fi network
- The total number of devices using the network at the same time
- The slice of bandwidth consumed by each of the devices connected to the network
Whether you are trying to boost a frail Wi-Fi connection or are trying to access the dead zones, extenders work like a charm. Placement is key to getting the most of your booster. Ideally, there should be a clear line of sight between the wireless router and the extender. This is the most successful way to boost the reach of your Wi-Fi network.
You May Like: Optimum Hotspot Password
What Can’t Wireless Extenders Do
While fairly easy to configure, range extenders have their limitations. They often use a separate network SSID that you have to log into as you move through the house, and Wi-Fi speeds are typically half of what you get from your main router. Most dual-band extenders use both radio bands to transmit data to and from the router, which means devices connecting to the extender are competing for bandwidth with the router. To help alleviate network congestion, some manufacturers let you dedicate a band for router-to-extender communications. Netgear’s Fastlane technology and Amped Wireless’s BoostBand technology are good examples.
How Much Can I Expect To Pay For A Wifi Extender
Wifi extenders are competitively priced within your local computer stores e.g. Harvey Norman, Officeworks, and even Kogan has their own brand Wi-Fi extender. Perfect for average Mums and Dads working in a home office environment or perhaps for that gamer chick wanting to pump a higher strength Wi-Fi signal into her bedroom and when lag and respawning really matters.
Most common brands of extenders currently in the market 2016-2017 are your ranges from TP-link, D-link and Netgear and average device cost will be anywhere between $30-$300 inc GST. We’ve listed a quick screenshot from our search online.
Also Check: Can I Have Two Wifi Routers In One House
Wifi Range Extenders Boosters And Repeaters
Unless you live or work in a single room, or your walls are paper-thin, youve probably tried them all. WiFi range extenders, wireless signal boosters or WiFi repeaters. However they are marketed they are all very similar. Devices that promise much in terms of improving wireless internet coverage, but often fail to deliver in real-world business or home settings.
Feel like youve already spent too much time, money and effort on wireless signal boosting devices that just arent working? Contact us for WiFi advice and support for businesses and homes in the Bristol, Bath, Trowbridge and Chippenham area.
Read on for more information about WiFi range extenders.
Are Wifi Boosters Dangerous
WiFi boosters are not dangerous or in any way harmful to humans nor animals. The signal is well within tested GHz ranges. A normal WiFi or Hotspot works in either 2.4 GHz or 5 GHz spectrum which is well within current tested limits, which is above 300 GHz.
Youll typically hear the term radiation when speaking about WiFi and Mobile signals. This is because WiFi signals are actually radiation, but dont let the term fool you. Its perfectly safe.
Types of radiation you typically can see causing health issues are above 1 million GHz, so at least 500.000 times higher than the radiation from a WiFi signal.
Did you also know that light is a type of radiation as well? Visible light is an EM radiation that has a frequency ranging from 300 GHz to several TeraHertz. The human eye is adapted to see at a maximum of 540 THz.
If the light doesnt hurt you, your WiFi wont either.
Don’t Miss: Best Way To Set Up Google Wifi