Home WiFi extender

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NAD83
Posts: 119
Joined: Thu Apr 07, 2011 1:25 pm

Home WiFi extender

Post by NAD83 » Tue Jan 19, 2016 2:02 pm

I have a room upstairs in our house, located the furthest away from our WiFi router that we get a weak signal on the Ipad. No other devices have this issue (phones, Roku.) I see they make those plug-in wifi extenders. Would something like that be suitable for this situation or do those not do what I think they do?

shashi
Posts: 87
Joined: Wed Sep 16, 2009 12:54 pm

Re: Home WiFi extender

Post by shashi » Tue Jan 19, 2016 2:05 pm

If you have a few year old router, better to upgrade than struggle with extenders (based on my experience).

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Toons
Posts: 13410
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Location: Hills of Tennessee

Re: Home WiFi extender

Post by Toons » Tue Jan 19, 2016 2:05 pm

"One does not accumulate but eliminate. It is not daily increase but daily decrease. The height of cultivation always runs to simplicity" –Bruce Lee

adamthesmythe
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Re: Home WiFi extender

Post by adamthesmythe » Tue Jan 19, 2016 2:06 pm

Yes, I have used such extenders for this purpose.

Expect that you can roughly double the present range. Depending on the security you use, setup could be a bit of trouble.

KlangFool
Posts: 14115
Joined: Sat Oct 11, 2008 12:35 pm

Re: Home WiFi extender

Post by KlangFool » Tue Jan 19, 2016 2:09 pm

NAD83 wrote:I have a room upstairs in our house, located the furthest away from our WiFi router that we get a weak signal on the Ipad. No other devices have this issue (phones, Roku.) I see they make those plug-in wifi extenders. Would something like that be suitable for this situation or do those not do what I think they do?
NAD83,

Before you buy and / or do anything, especially if your WiFi router is more than 1 year old, get your internet service provider to replace your WiFi router. In almost all cases, you will get it for free. And, most of the time, the newer and better WiFi router will solve the problem.

I did that for my house and my brother-in-law's house. We have Verizon Fios service.

KlangFool

PowDay
Posts: 320
Joined: Wed Aug 31, 2011 7:43 am

Re: Home WiFi extender

Post by PowDay » Tue Jan 19, 2016 2:12 pm

I just added one of these to my system, and turned off the wifi on my FIOS modem.

http://www.amazon.com/Ubiquiti-Networks ... Q1JWX64JWR

Night a day difference with only one access point, and these are set-up to quickly add multiple access points allowing for devices to easily roam from AP to AP.

Caveat, this is not a plug and play solution, it involves running Ethernet cable, but it was well worth it

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Toons
Posts: 13410
Joined: Fri Nov 21, 2008 10:20 am
Location: Hills of Tennessee

Re: Home WiFi extender

Post by Toons » Tue Jan 19, 2016 2:15 pm

Or this Almond Product.
I have 2 of them one as a router ,the other as an extender.
Works fine. :happy

http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00RQJRXMQ?psc=1
"One does not accumulate but eliminate. It is not daily increase but daily decrease. The height of cultivation always runs to simplicity" –Bruce Lee

new2bogle
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Re: Home WiFi extender

Post by new2bogle » Tue Jan 19, 2016 2:16 pm

Do you have landline phone outlets in your rooms that are unused? If they are cat 5 cabling then convert them to ethernet and you have hardwire to the far room now.

Or, you can get powerline network adapters, I think they are about $50 (maybe less on sale?) and that'd be easier than a wifi extender.

NYGiantsFan
Posts: 165
Joined: Fri Aug 17, 2012 7:59 am

Re: Home WiFi extender

Post by NYGiantsFan » Tue Jan 19, 2016 2:16 pm

If you are technical...

you can do following setup with Power line adapter and additional wireless router. Total cost should be around 75 ($50 for decent used wireless n router and 25 for set of power line adapter)
-Purchase power line adapter. Plug into existing router and second part should be plugged in the area where you have trouble with signal.
-Purchase an additional router. Set it up as wireless access points (http://www.speedguide.net/articles/how- ... point-2556) . Remember to Use a LAN port on the new wireless router, and connect it with a Cat5 network cable to power line adapter. Make sure not to use the "Internet/WAN" port on the wireless access point!

This way your home will be set up with 2 wireless networks (instead of currently only one) with great WIFI connectivity throughout the home.

smackboy1
Posts: 1133
Joined: Wed Mar 14, 2007 9:41 pm

Re: Home WiFi extender

Post by smackboy1 » Tue Jan 19, 2016 2:34 pm

NAD83 wrote:I have a room upstairs in our house, located the furthest away from our WiFi router that we get a weak signal on the Ipad. No other devices have this issue (phones, Roku.) I see they make those plug-in wifi extenders. Would something like that be suitable for this situation or do those not do what I think they do?
Wifi extender aka repeater aka booster do work, but they are not the best solution if you want high performance wifi. I would only use an extender if there was no other workable solution. What an extender does is connect to the wifi router as a single wifi client and rebroadcast the signal. Because every packet has to go through the extender twice, it can be S-L-O-W maybe 50% slower. On top of that, all the devices connected to the extender are basically sharing 1 wifi client connection with the router. So if there are more than 1 client connected to the extender, it can be even S-L-O-W-E-R.

The problem could be solved by simply getting a better wifi router (the ones provided by ISP's typically suck) with the newest tech. Some brands of router have better range than others (personally I like ASUS for range). Or moving the wifi router (is the router located near the microwave or a large metal object e.g. refrigerator?). Ethernet is still fastest, so maybe run some cable or use ethernet powerline adapters to move the wifi router to better location. Is an external antenna an option for the wifi router? Does the wifi router have dual band? Sometimes 2.4 GHz has greater range than 5 GHz.
Disclaimer: nothing written here should be taken as legal advice, but I did stay at a Holiday Inn Express last night.

KlangFool
Posts: 14115
Joined: Sat Oct 11, 2008 12:35 pm

Re: Home WiFi extender

Post by KlangFool » Tue Jan 19, 2016 2:48 pm

PowDay wrote:I just added one of these to my system, and turned off the wifi on my FIOS modem.

http://www.amazon.com/Ubiquiti-Networks ... Q1JWX64JWR

Night a day difference with only one access point, and these are set-up to quickly add multiple access points allowing for devices to easily roam from AP to AP.

Caveat, this is not a plug and play solution, it involves running Ethernet cable, but it was well worth it
PowDay,

Thanks for recommending an impressive product.

KlangFool

DSInvestor
Posts: 11035
Joined: Sat Oct 04, 2008 11:42 am

Re: Home WiFi extender

Post by DSInvestor » Tue Jan 19, 2016 2:52 pm

Is your current router a dual band router that supports 2.4GHz and 5GHz? Dual band routers can be configured with 2 SSIDs one for each frequency? If your router supports two frequencies and 2 SSIDs, check to see which SSID your iPad is connecting to. The range for 2.4GHz is longer than for 5GHz. If your iPad is configured to connect to 5GHz SSID, try switching to the 2.4GHz SSID.
Wiki

Topic Author
NAD83
Posts: 119
Joined: Thu Apr 07, 2011 1:25 pm

Re: Home WiFi extender

Post by NAD83 » Tue Jan 19, 2016 3:08 pm

Thanks for all the great suggestions. My router is fairly new and yes, it is dual band. I will check to see what it is hooking up to.

DSInvestor
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Re: Home WiFi extender

Post by DSInvestor » Tue Jan 19, 2016 4:02 pm

Also consider the location of your router. Is there lots of clutter around it? If so, maybe move it higher so there are less obstructions around it.

Is the router located on one end of the house resulting in weak signal at the other end of the house? If so, see if there is a way to locate the router in a more central location.
Wiki

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unclescrooge
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Re: Home WiFi extender

Post by unclescrooge » Tue Jan 19, 2016 4:38 pm

Also try placing it as high as possible.

Lacrocious
Posts: 332
Joined: Thu Mar 22, 2007 9:45 pm
Location: Wisconsin

Re: Home WiFi extender

Post by Lacrocious » Tue Jan 19, 2016 8:25 pm

Another vote for Powerline adapters. Used http://www.amazon.com/Netgear-Powerline ... +powerline at my daughters college house. Her room was on the opposite side of the house from the cable modem/wifi adapter and upstairs to boot. All the upstairs people had crappy wifi signals. For ~$60, we plugged the base into an outlet near the cable modem and used an Ethernet cable to connect them. The extension piece went in an outlet in her room and boom - she has a high-speed wireless connection available, that the other girls were able to use as well. It also has a single Ethernet port - so she could use a wired connection if needed.

It worked well for her.
- L

amarone
Posts: 459
Joined: Sun Feb 15, 2009 6:39 am
Location: Atlanta

Re: Home WiFi extender

Post by amarone » Wed Jan 20, 2016 9:24 am

smackboy1 wrote:Wifi extender aka repeater aka booster do work, but they are not the best solution if you want high performance wifi. I would only use an extender if there was no other workable solution. What an extender does is connect to the wifi router as a single wifi client and rebroadcast the signal. Because every packet has to go through the extender twice, it can be S-L-O-W maybe 50% slower. On top of that, all the devices connected to the extender are basically sharing 1 wifi client connection with the router. So if there are more than 1 client connected to the extender, it can be even S-L-O-W-E-R.

The problem could be solved by simply getting a better wifi router (the ones provided by ISP's typically suck) with the newest tech. Some brands of router have better range than others (personally I like ASUS for range). Or moving the wifi router (is the router located near the microwave or a large metal object e.g. refrigerator?). Ethernet is still fastest, so maybe run some cable or use ethernet powerline adapters to move the wifi router to better location. Is an external antenna an option for the wifi router? Does the wifi router have dual band? Sometimes 2.4 GHz has greater range than 5 GHz.
I second this post. In a similar position to the OP I bought an extender and the result was that everything that used to work okay slowed by about 50% I returned it.

Things I have done that have helped:
  • buy a better router. Do not use the one from your ISP.
  • Experiment with router positioning. My router is still within three feet of its original location, but I improved throughput 50% It is now higher and there is less wall to go through to get to the distant room.
  • Change router orientation. Mine will lie horizontally or stand up vertically. I got better throughput when horizontal.
  • Run an ethernet cable to a second router acting as an access point. I did this at another house and now have excellent WiFi throughout the home.

Rodc
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Re: Home WiFi extender

Post by Rodc » Wed Jan 20, 2016 9:54 am

I have a new decent router. Forget the specs. Also have a new Comcast cable router that is also a wifi router, they swapped out the old non-wifi unit right after I bought the new router. Go figure.

But the signal across the house was not good.

I bought a Linksys AC300 to use with one for wife and I who are small time users. Bought a Linksys AC1200 for the other for the kids to use.

AC300 was so slow it was worse than useless.

AC1200 accommodates us all just fine.

I have no idea what brand is best, likely not that much difference one to the other at a given price point, so whatever you get buy a decent one not a low end one.
We live a world with knowledge of the future markets has less than one significant figure. And people will still and always demand answers to three significant digits.

takeshi
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Re: Home WiFi extender

Post by takeshi » Wed Jan 20, 2016 11:45 am

Finding the right solution really requires careful consideration of the existing network, construction of the home and options that are available. Generally speaking, wired extensions will provide better performance than wireless extensions for reasons already stated in an earlier reply. Even if you can't run Cat 5/6/whatever between the rooms, consider powerline and MoCA if they might work for you. If there are no options left then consider a wireless extender but be prepared for a significant performance hit. Of course, depending on your specific usage the performance hit may or may not matter.

mpowered
Posts: 51
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Re: Home WiFi extender

Post by mpowered » Wed Jan 20, 2016 11:53 am

I hate wifi extenders, and generally, running multiple routers. My house now has an enterprise grade system run by two Ubiqiti wireless access points. They connect to my router/AT&T Uverse modem using ethernet (you'll want to disable WIFI on this pos router), are powered using power injectors (included) in my distribution closet. The benefit of this system is that the two WAP's broadcast the same SSID, but hand off connections between each other since they are in constant contact with each other. Set up was fairly straight forward, and I've never had to reset my WAPs (though I've had to reset my modem multiple times).

They run around 60-80 each for the wireless b/g/n model, and go up for a/c. I have a 6000 square foot house on a large lot, so depending on your house, you may only need one.

http://smile.amazon.com/Ubiquiti-Networ ... s=ubiquiti

atlanta_dad
Posts: 101
Joined: Wed Aug 07, 2013 12:04 pm

Re: Home WiFi extender

Post by atlanta_dad » Wed Jan 20, 2016 12:04 pm

I recently upgraded to Google On hub, that solved my problems. Now I have very good signal through out my single family house. I strongly recommend it though it is a little bit expensive, about $200.

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