TP-Link powerline adapters review
Extend your network with the AV2000 2-port Gigabit Passthrough Powerline Starter Kit
Much as we love WiFi, even the latest routers can have trouble reaching important places. For many people this means connecting a main computer or a games console to a router in another part of the house – and PC users don’t like connecting by WiFi: it’s just plain wrong (plus the unreliability of ping and connection speed is not good for things like gaming).
So even if you have a good WiFi setup in your home, using powerline adapters to extend your network can be a boon. While performance will vary depending on the layout and age of your home/office’s wiring a good set of adapters can provide a fast and stable connection these days.
The TP-Link Homeplug AV2 (this product seems to have a variety of names – the part number is TL-PA9020P Kit) consists of a pair of adapters each with two Gigabit Ethernet ports. Of course, in the world of networking, stated speeds are borderline irrelevant as you’ll never nearly hit that theoretical maximum in the real world.
So we tested them against the stalwart set we’d been using for the past several months – D-Link’s DHP-700AV AV2 powerline adapters which offer the same specs albeit with only one network port.
Running a SpeedTest over Telstra cable saw similar speeds – the D-Link was a smidge faster but that could easily be due to performing the tests at different times with different network conditions.
We also transferred a 1.83GB movie file from a USB 3 hard disk attached to our Linksys router. Both transfers averaged out at around 12.5 MB/s (100Mb/s). To check that hardware wasn’t a limiting factor here we repeated the test using a Surface Pro 3 and attained the same results.
While this is some way behind the stated speed, it’s nothing less than we’d expect and these are basically among the fastest we’ve tested on the market.
TP-Link also makes a point about them using MIMO technology to provide better multitasking when streaming but we couldn’t see any difference in our tests. ‘Beamforming’ technology apparently makes the connection more stable but we’ve not experienced instability from powerline adapters for a few years now.
All in all it comes down to price and features. D-Link’s latest AV2 powerline adapters can be had for around $150 while these TP-Link units can be had for $159 - but they come with an extra network port. Ultimately it depends on how much you need and extra port plus the price you can find either for as to which one you choose.
Join the newsletter!
Latest News Articles
- How to connect an Apple LED Cinema Display to a new MacBook
- Four ways to extend displays to your Mac (now and coming soon)
- Connect an old Apple display to a new Mac to give it new life
- Apple takes on AirPods Pro with $150 Beats Studio Buds noise-canceling earbuds
- AirPods Max impressions roundup: A great fit with ‘really good sound’ and a terrible case
Most Popular Articles
- 1 Everything you need to know about 4K
- 2 Beware pirate gamers: This malware targets you
- 3 The 10 best survival games on PC in 2021
- 4 Apple reportedly testing new high-end monitor with an A13 chip inside
- 5 Amazon's new game might literally destroy your graphics card
- Nvidia beefs up DLSS with more games and Linux support
- What laptop should I get? Top 12 things to consider
- Sonos Arc review: The Main Event
- Intel Core i3 vs i5 vs i7: find out which cpu is better
- Laser vs. inkjet printers: which is better?