Consumer Electronics, Gadgets & Accessories

WLAN amplifier: You should pay attention to this!

Do you live in a multi-story house or a large apartment? Then there might be a corner or two in your own four walls where access to the home wireless network is difficult. This is perfectly normal and is simply due to the limited range of classic WLAN routers. But there is a simple solution – WLAN amplifiers. With the help of these little helpers, which usually only require a power outlet and then expand the wireless network in your home, you can enjoy stable Internet even in the last corner of your apartment or house. We’ve put together a few tips that you should keep in mind when buying a WLAN repeater. We will also briefly introduce you to a few promising representatives from the field of WLAN repeaters.

WLAN repeater: That’s why a WLAN repeater

Nowadays, the Internet connection to the home network is hardly ever established with a classic LAN cable. Exceptions are actually only devices such as TV, PC and game console. The rest usually connects wirelessly via the WLAN network. But as technology advances, it’s not just the number of devices that want to connect to the network that’s growing. On top of that, the places where they are used are changing. For example, people are increasingly relying on surveillance cameras mounted on the outside wall of the house. On top of that, each floor of a family home has its own “Alexa” or other voice assistant. Here, most WLAN routers are simply overwhelmed to supply all devices in the vicinity with a signal. You then have no choice but to use a WLAN amplifier. And this solution is as simple as it is ingenious. After all, you can easily extend the range of your WLAN network. Below we present three of the most popular WLAN repeaters on the market.

WLAN repeater: Our tips

For our top 3, we looked at three of the most popular models on the market. In addition to AVM and Telekom, a device from TP-Link also comes under the microscope here.

AVM FRITZ!Repeater 6000

If extensive and reliable wireless Internet coverage is important to you, you will certainly be willing to spend a bit more money on it. However, the AVM FRITZ!Repeater 6000 might be a bit too much of a good thing for some people. At just under 200 Euros, the repeater costs as much as a really good WLAN router itself. But is the WLAN repeater worth this price? A look at the technical data makes it clear that you can hardly get anything better in the field of WLAN repeaters at the moment. This already starts with the support of the current WiFi 6 standard. Furthermore, the stylish piece of technology in the company’s typical color mix of red and white masters both 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz.

WLAN Verstärker
FRITZ!Repeater 6000 (Image: AVM)

Here, manufacturer AVM emphasizes that the WLAN repeater should be particularly interesting for users who want to integrate many devices into the home wireless network. This is the Achilles’ heel of many competitors. Since the manufacturer combines three wireless units with multiple antennas and a multi-user MIMO, the plan should definitely work. The mesh functions are also very exciting for smart home fans. Finally, the WLAN amplifier for Fritzbox increases the range of your smart home. If you own a FRITZ!Box and are looking for a powerful and uncompromising repeater, you are in the right place. On Amazon you can get the repeater for € 224.79 *.

Telecom Speed Home WLAN

Owners of a WLAN router from Telekom get a real bargain with the Telekom Speed Home WLAN, which offers a lot of features at a fair price. Not only is modern WiFi 6 on board, but the latest Telekom mesh technology is also used here. Two processors are at the core, which are supposed to provide enough power for stable, secure and, above all, fast wireless connections. With the help of the mesh feature, you can create a powerful wireless network throughout your home. Up to five devices can work together here.

WLAN Verstärker
Image: Deutsche Telekom

Although the data transfer rate of 4,800 Mbit/s cannot keep up with AVM’s flagship repeater, it is perfectly sufficient for the average consumer. Thanks to Plug&Play, the WLAN repeater can be easily integrated into the user’s wireless network to expand it. The two LAN ports are also practical. These enable a classic cable connection. Furthermore, the WLAN repeater consumes very little power. In terms of price-performance, owners of a telecom router won’t go wrong here. For € 74.99 * there is the stylish repeater, which reminds a bit of a satellite dish in mini format.

TP-Link RE550

You don’t have a router from AVM or Telekom? Then you don’t have to do without a WLAN amplifier, of course. There are also a number of other manufacturers that offer you a way to distribute your wireless network throughout the house. TP-Link is one of them. One example is the TP-Link RE550. The unassuming WLAN repeater allows you to cover up to three to five rooms in your apartment or house with a stable wireless network. To ensure reliable coverage, the WLAN repeater comes with three antennas. You can adjust their orientation to direct the signal in the right direction.

WLAN Amplifier
Image: TP-Link

In doing so, it supports both 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz to spread the WLAN signal throughout your own four walls. Also on board is a Gigabit Ethernet port. Despite its well-rounded features, the TP-Link comes in at a significantly lower price than the aforementioned competition at just under 50 Euros. So where is the catch? The TP-Link has a real disadvantage in terms of speed. Both AVM and Telekom gallop away from it here. The TP-Link only offers a maximum of 1,300 Mbps, while Telekom offers 4,800 Mbps and AVM 6,000 Mbps. On Amazon, the mid-range repeater is available for € 59.78 *.

WLAN repeater: Are WiFi 6 and mesh a must?

As in many areas of consumer electronics, WLAN repeater manufacturers throw around many different metrics to highlight their devices as top-of-the-line models. But what do you really need when buying a WLAN repeater? Let’s start with the WLAN standard. All three devices we presented rely on WiFi 6, but do you really need it? With the help of WiFi 6, the speeds within your wireless network are increased significantly. However, this is only true under certain conditions. First of all, you need a device that supports the standard. Furthermore, you will only benefit from the latest standard if you don’t move too far away from the repeater.

Given the fact that the majority of end devices still rely on Wi-Fi 5 or even 4, repeaters usually also contain more antennas for the older signals. Accordingly, you usually get a more stable signal here. Consequently, WiFi 6 is only a real purchase argument if you own many devices of the new standard. Furthermore, mid-range models already use mesh. But what exactly is that? With the help of mesh, modern WLAN repeaters offer the possibility of sophisticated WiFi management. The fact that the repeater comes from the same manufacturer as the router comes into play here. After all, the devices harmonize so well with each other that your end devices always get the best signal.

If you change floors in your house, for example, the mesh connection between the repeater and router ensures that you are always connected to the access point that offers the most stable signal. This ensures that you always have the most reliable and fastest network. But mesh functions enable even more. It is now possible to assign a certain function to each member within the mesh system. For example, this allows you to turn a classic router into a repeater. As a result, you can also set up two routers in your home. However, it makes more sense and is cheaper to install a repeater that matches the router.

WLAN repeater: Don’t save at the wrong end

If you are looking for a suitable WLAN amplifier, you will quickly find what you are looking for. You can already get devices that cost only a fraction of the models from AVM, Telekom and TP-Link. However, you should not expect an equal performance. You will have to cut back on the signal standards in particular. For example, if you want WiFi 6, you cannot expect the WLAN repeater to cost only 10 Euros. The wireless standards are also outdated in this price range. For example, there is usually only 2.4 GHz and no 5 GHz. Especially the latter should be an absolute must, though. After all, wireless on 2.4 GHz is not only slower. On top of that, more different devices will fit into your wireless network if the repeater can distribute them across the two different frequencies.

In the end, you know best what your requirements are for a repeater. Should you only want to cover your attic so that one can surf the Internet there also times by means of smartphone, certainly also a cheap repeater is enough. However, if you want to provide your study or even your gaming area with a stable and fast wireless network, you will have to spend a lot more money. At least 50 Euros is the minimum price for a WLAN repeater. You should also play it safe and buy a model from the same provider as your Wi-Fi router. Owners of a FRITZ!Box do not have to worry about having to buy the FRITZ!Repeater 6000. There are also perfectly adequate alternatives like the AVM FRITZ!Repeater 1200 AX, which costs about a third with € 77.99 *.

Simon Lüthje

I am co-founder of this blog and am very interested in everything that has to do with technology, but I also like to play games. I was born in Hamburg, but now I live in Bad Segeberg.

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Do you live in a multi-story house or a large apartment? Then there might be a corner or two in your own four walls where access to the home wireless network is difficult. This is perfectly normal and is simply due to the limited range of classic WLAN routers. But there is a simple solution … (Weiterlesen...)

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