Motoraux Wireless-N Mini Wi-Fi Range Extender with Five Modes

We have a split-entry house, approx 40 ft x 20 ft. We moved our desktop PC without WiFi down to my son's room in the basement. Since the PC doesn't have a WiFi adapter (and a USB one I bought didn't work on it), we also moved the cable modem and cheap DLink router down there too. But of course this killed the WiFi in our bedroom, which is on the main floor at the opposite end of the house.

I purchased this product, set it up on the main floor, but on the same side of the house as my son's room. Once I got it set up, it worked great. I now have a full-strength signal everywhere in the upstairs.

The only complaint I have is the instruction "manual" (really, just a pamphlet). It does explain how to get into the configuration section, but the title of the section on page 2 should be something like "Initial Configuration", not "Setting up a Wireless Infrastructure Network". That makes it seem like you'd only do this to set it up as a WAP. The drawing reinforces that idea. It needs to be made clear that you have to do this step for whatever mode you want to use the device in.

The other issue is that I don't think there's any way to get back to the configuration once you set up the device in one of the modes (e.g. repeater). You have to do a factory reset to get it back to where you can point your browser to the device's IP and get into the configuration.

Edimax EW-7811Un 150Mbps 11n Wi-Fi USB Adapter

I purchased this to add wireless connectivity to my Raspberry Pi running OpenELEC. My intention was to have the Pi sit in my second floor bedroom and stream media (movies and music mostly) from the HTPC running XBMC downstairs.

Upon plugging it in, I went to the settings screen in OpenELEC and entered in my wireless networking information. I rebooted for good measure and went to system information and found that it had no IP address. After verifying my wireless settings and rebooting once more, I still wasn't connected.

I tried a boatload of things, including installing RaspBian, RaspBMC, different versions of OpenELEC, various command line voodoo, disabling Wifi authentication, etc. None of this worked until I used a powered USB hub, and then it connected automagically. I was simultaneously relieved and frustrated when it worked. Relieved because it finally worked, frustrated because I spent so much time with it.

Now, several people have said that this doesn't need a powered hub for the Pi- which is actually why I bought it. My personal experience was that it did. I have seen things from other people about having to change their power supply to make Wifi adapters work on the pi - I didn't have another to use. Just keep that in mind that if you have trouble, try a powered USB hub before you tear your hair out.

With the Wifi now running properly, I took the Pi to my upstairs bedroom and set it up. I had previously verified that 1080p movies on the wired LAN ran without jitter or buffering. Playing with it on wireless, I found that I had to set my video streams to transcode to 1mbps 720p in order to stream without buffering. I was just happy that it was working, so I was OK with the quality drop.

If you are looking to stream high quality media over this I would suggest one of the other 300mbps or even 450mbps adapters available online. If you are just looking for a cheap, low-profile wireless adapter for web browsing, this should function perfectly.

Alfa AWUS036H 1000mW 1W 802.11b/g USB Wireless WiFi Adapter

This is a good little USB network adaptor and works as advertised.

Background: I have a Dell laptop with an internal network card. I travel a lot and use it in hotels and hot spots quite a bit. The signal I was getting on the internal card with its two internal antenna's was weaker then I would like and usually doesn't get a strong enough signal to maintain 54 Mbps speed. I was usually down around 11 Mbps in a hotel room.

Sometimes I have had to move to a different room, move to a balcony, or a certain point in the room to get a signal at all. In one hotel room I checked signal right after checking in and I could only get a usable signal near the door holding the computer up near the ceiling. I had to walk around the hotel to find a group of rooms that I thought would work and then coordinate with he front desk on availability and change rooms.

I researched many options, reading reviews, etc. Most other options were more expensive or problematic, including modifying my computer to install an external antenna. I looked at USB cards with the mail plug that plug into the computer without using an extension, pcmcia cards with external antenna's, directional antenna's, etc. Most of the reviews I read were from kids "War Driving" but still shed some light on how well this card works.

What I got: I went with the Alpha because of good reviews I read, and the fact that I can remote locate it using an extension giving more options then one mounted to the computer. The unit looks pretty cheap being plastic. Nothing special. It came with the two antennas. I ordered the two extension cables. One is passive and one is active (active is required for longer extensions).

Functionality/Results: It works well. So far I have not been in a Hotel where I didn't get an 88% or better connection (signal strength) with 85 or 90% link quality or better, and more importantly a link with 54 Mbps speed. I get many more signals too, but that is not what I was looking for in most cases. I have tried it in a dozen or so hotels and played with outside signals a bit. There are a lot of them out there.

The ability to move the antenna 10 to 25 feet away could be useful to get it on a balcony, outside a window, get around a concrete wall, etc. but I haven't had to do that yet with the Alpha. Once in the Bahamas, using the computers internal card, I had to get out on a balcony with a 40 mph wind coming off the ocean that would knock over the laptop if I didn't hold on to it, to get a clear shot to the hotel main building where the router was located.

I had to weather the salt spray and either had to hold the computer screen to keep it from swaying so I could see it or hold my wine glass to keep it from tipping over. I needed three hands and it was a tough decision as to which two things to hold. That is when I decided to order this card. I read about folks on sail boats running the Alpha up the mast and getting a signal 4 or 10 miles off shore and putting the unit in a zip-loc bag to keep it out of the elements.

If I had modified my computer for an external antenna, or gotten a pcmcia card with external antenna, I could have run coaxial cable to a remote antenna to get the same position benefits, but the signal losses are large that way and signal cuts in half with every few feet of coax.

With this adapter the antenna is run right into the transmitter/receiver and there is no loss, however you still have the ability to remote locate it up high in a room, outside a window, on a balcony, etc. without the loss. You don't get the signal loss from a USB cable, although you do run out of power if run too far. 25 feet with the two supplied cables is plenty for me.

Power: The high power is meaningless and probably a lie. I think they are claiming equivalent radiated power with a good antenna to some poor antenna standard like the antenna's printed on a pcmcia adapter card circuit board or something. Anyway it is not really a 1000mW adapter, but it does work well.

The allowable power output is somewhat complicated but is based on radiated power (the combined effect of the transmitter and antenna). Anyway a balance of output power, receiver sensitivity, and selectivity is what is important and this one does a good job. It gets quite warm too only having passive cooling (vents).

Antenna's: Like many folks have reported, the big antenna doesn't seem to work any better for me then the little one. Sometimes it will get a slightly stronger signal and more signals with it, but the link quality (signal to noise ratio) is worse. The little antenna has worked fine in all cases so far and just as well as the big one on comparison.

Software: The software installed easily for me with Windows XP and I have had no problems. The software is between OK to fairly nice. I can still enable my internal card and use it when the signal is strong and I don't want to carry the Alpha. I disable it when using the Alpha.

Works great. Hope it last a long time.

If you are looking for solutions for your home (or work) because of problems with range on your Wifi you might also try one of the homemade paper directional parabolic antenna's that you print off from the internet. They really work and also increase security if positioned properly by directing coverage to within your house and decreasing coverage outside.

They work will with this unit too. Requires a router with external antenna(s). You can also put one on the antenna of the Alpha and beam signals between the router and the Alpha. Quite effective. You print out a template from the internet, cutout a couple pieces of paper, cover one with foil or aluminum tape, stick the parabolic template together to the flat sheet to form the shape, and position the unit on the antenna of your router.

Rosewill USB 3.0 2 Detachable Antenna Wireless Adapter Up to 300Mbps (AC1200UBE2)

I have a D-Link DIR-655 router, which had issues in the past with wireless. I had bought a DWA-130 USB wireless adapter 6 months ago to connect my desktop to the internet. The wireless would work fine for a while until later when the wireless would constantly connect and disconnect. Every time I rebooted the router, the wireless would play nice again and then start the whole thing over again. So I blamed the router.

Even after the new firmware update for the router, which solved all issues for others, I still had issues. Then I turned to the modem. I thought the modem was timing out or something like that because even the wired computer was getting affected and the modem status page occasionally wouldn't load properly. Just more and more frustration as I thought the whole wireless tech was just worthless.

Then one day I got pissed at the wireless adapter because when I rubbed it on the back or even cooled it with my table fan, it would start working againuntil I stopped rubbing it. I decided to get a new more powerful wireless adapter just to see if it would change anything. Saw good reviews for the Rosewill device and bought it.

OMG!!! Ever since I started using this device, ALL my router and internet problems disappeared!! The Rosewill device would connect to my router with 5 bars at all times at 300mbps wireless-n and not create a fussIT JUST WORKS!

Since then my internet has been working uninterrupted and all the wired devices work without a hiccup. ALL BECAUSE OF ONE..BAD..DEVICE! How can this be? The old adapter was a D-Link connecting to a D-Link routerand that had issues while the Rosewill adapter and D-Link router work fine??? Just shows to prove that even the underdog is not to be underestimated.

Now some info: The adapter itself comes with a nice base that will sit on any flat surface + the long antenna gets you wireless signals you didn't even knew existed. Yeah, this beats a laptop's built-in wireless easily.

Also, this device is not propietary technology unlike the big brands out there. This means that you can easily obtain the newest drivers directly from Realtek's website. And trust me, they update their drivers on a constant basis which is good for the consumer. Just download the RTL8192SU drivers rather than relying on the included CD for the latest drivers.

Update: So the device still works fine, but it has started exhibiting connectivity issues. It is due to the fact that I am on a different floor on the opposite side of the house away from the router. So with the distance issue I am also using the device for a lot of 720p streaming and the combination of the two probably and slowly kills my wireless adapters.

So it's not that the product is bad, it's just the way I use it makes it bad. But it still works fine, just not good enough for my intended use. So I still recommend buying this as it's an excellent wireless device, but for heavy use you should go wired like I eventually had to. Wired is the best, hands down.

Tenext Pair Laptop Wireless Mini PCI PCI-E Internal Antenna

I bought these antenna leads to develop a work-around for Apple's glaring wireless antenna design flaw found in early 2008 aluminum MacBook Pro laptops (also found the same issue in the late 2008 unibody MacBook Pros as well). The design problem consists of Apple placing the internal antenna leads inside an aluminum covered screen hinge.

The location of the leads isn't the problem, but their location and being covered by aluminum is (the aluminum causes signal attenuation). I have 2 "all-plastic" MacBooks from 2008 (that also have their wireless antenna leads located within the screen hinge) that connect to my 300 Mbps home wireless network at 243 Mbps and higher within certain areas in which I like to work.

However, my early 2008 aluminum Mac Book Pro won't even connect at any 802.11n data rates in those exact locations (it even sometimes has a problem connecting at the full 54 Mbps 802.11g data rate in those areas). After disconnecting the original antenna leads (and cutting them back--wasn't in the mood for several hours of surgery just to remove them from the screen hinge) and connecting these antenna leads and leaving them externally located (threaded them through a few exhaust holes in the case and attached to the back of the latop screen), I'm now getting the same 243 Mbps and higher data rates as my all-plastic MacBooks.

By the way, if you attempt to replacate this project, don't affix the flat aluminum ends of the antenna leads to the back of your aluminum laptop screen because it will cause attenuation and loss of higher data rates. What I did was use some pieces of aluminum tape to affix the wires to the sreen back, but I left the ends unattached and I left the adhesive paper attached (leave about an inch of free wire just before the aluminum ends).

In my opinion, Apple should be made to provide everyone who has identified this wireless design flaw with a free replacement laptop (current model). Incidentally, for those wondering why I didn't contact Apple years ago about this issue, the early 2008 MacBook Pro belonged to my father-in-law and was placed in a drawer because he got fed up with taking it to Apple for repair only to find the issue unresolved.

Apple has a 3-same-issue-repair policy in which it provides a customer with a free replacement laptop if the same issue is repaired 3 times and the issue isn't resolved. The reason I know about this policy is I forced Apple to replace a late 2008 unibody MacBook Pro (found out about this policy by accident). Unfortunately for my father-in-law, Apple didn't replace his laptop.

The reason: because Apple knew this was a design flaw and simply providing him with another similar model laptop wouldn't have resolved the issue. Fortunately for Apple, he went out and bought a newer model that didn't have the same issue.

C.Crane C. Crane Versa USB WiFi Adapter 3

This is a very small, easy to use Wifi Adapter. To my surprise, on a windows 8.1 laptop, just plugging it in when you are in an area that your machine's Wifi works is fast and seamless. After that, you should turn off your computers wifi and you should be good to go. My problem was not signal strength.

While it was not great, the signal had to go thru at least 4 walls and the result was a signal, but while not obvious, the return signal from the laptop was not always getting to the router. Installed this and now get 5 bars, and a very fast, consistent signal. Can also now see 7 other systems in the area (versus 5 before), and the 5 I could just see are now 3 to 5 bars. Looking outside, that would indicated that this can pickup a strong signal from the houses around us, at least 200 ft. You can get a choice of stronger antenna, but for here, this is a major improvement.

Update: Stupid me did not scroll down the list of stationsturns out it is actually 17 not 7. Given that we live on a single street, that would mean we are getting signals from roughly 4 houses away in both directions, and both sides of the street. Rather amazing actually.

TP-LINK Archer T4UH AC1200 High Gain Wireless Dual Band USB Adapter

This adapter is simple to install and rock solid. If you have a newer AC router, this is a great choice to upgrade your wireless network connection on a Windows PC without having to open the case of your computer. For laptops, it is almost a no-brainer.

The adapter is about the size of a deck of cards. It has little rabbit ears and a rubber base to keep it from sliding around. The included USB 3 cable is thick, but they all are.

This is only for Windows use - like a dodo bird, I tried to install this on my Mac - the lights didn't even light up. There is Mac love with this adapter.

I installed this on a newly upgraded Windows 7 computer that had a G wireless card (yes it is a slightly older computer build). Installation was pretty easy - plug the adapter into a USB3 port (it will work with USB2), Windows install will fail, simply box out of that window. Insert the mini-CD and run the setup program. If you do not have an optical drive or one that will hold a mini-CD, the drivers are easy to get at the TP-Link website. I chose to install the full driver and utility package (you could use Windows zero configuration and not bother with the utility). After the installation wizard finished, a fancy wireless network choice screen comes up.

Before you choose your network, it might be a good idea to disable your other wireless adapter if you are upgrading. Enter the password for your network, and you are now connected to the internet. Done and done - no reboot necessary.

This computer struggled forever with internet connectivity. It is in a fairly remote corner of the house and never ran much better than 8 Mbps. After installing the adapter, I now get full 30 Mbps - exactly what I get with a wired connection to my modem. The adapter works flawlessly and reliably.

This is a rock solid outstanding USB wireless adapter.

Linksys RE1000 Wireless-N WiFi Range Extender

Our Linksys E3200 High-Performance Simultaneous Dual-Band Wireless-N Router sits in a basement corner and covers most of the house but its signal is simply not strong enough at the exact opposite end of the house on the second floor (master bedroom) where I get 1-2 bars on my laptop on a good day and, from time to time, nothing at all. With the Range Extender (it's a wireless repeater) plugged into a wall outlet on the first floor I am now getting 4-5 bars consistently and about 65Mbps. Problem solved.

I am happy with my purchase because the RE1000 finally solves a problem and it's one thing I will not have to worry about and because it's one of the easiest to set up 'networking' gadgets I know of. So, these are the facts and my experience.

WHAT YOU GET

* The RE1000 Range Extender itself
* CD that has the setup utility and the manual
* AC cord, just in case you don't want to plug it directly into the wall outlet
* AC power connector cover
* A short Ethernet cable that may be needed for setup

WHAT ELSE YOU NEED

* A wireless b/g/n router, obviously
* PC or Mac with Wi-Fi and a CD drive to run the setup
* Some Web browser to run the more sophisticated setup and administration activities

SETUP AND INSTALLATION

It's as easy as running the Setup program. After a minute or so you are asked to plug the device into a power outlet somewhere near the router for it to be 'discovered'. That's done quickly and the RE1000 is ready to use by plugging it directly into a wall outlet or you can use the supplied cord.

More sophisticated admin tasks can be performed through a browser. You will need to know RE1000's IP address for that to work. Through your favorite Web browser, you can associate your device with a specific access point or router and determine signal strength at various locations to determine your extender's optimal placement.

There are more options but none was needed with our CISCO router and it should be the case with most b/g/n routers.

RATING

I wish that all 'electronics' were this easy and efficient. Once the 5-minute setup is done you can plug this anywhere in the house (within your router's range) and it will just work. We happened to have a stormy day yesterday and we lost power several times - not an uncommon occurrence - and every time the RE1000 reconnected itself to the router once the power came back and did its magic without requiring any human intervention. This is near-zero maintenance device that addresses the source of major frustrations.

AT&T Cisco 3G MicroCell GPS Antenna for Wireless Network GPS Signal Extender DPH151

When I got my AT&T 3G Microcell, I was surprised to learn that it was completely unusable because it couldn't get a clear GPS signal at my home. The broadband connection worked fine and my phone saw the Microcell just fine, but without the GPS location, the device won't let you make any calls. I tried placing the Microcell in various locations, including smack in the center of a big bay window, but no luck.

So I ordered this antenna and it made all the difference. It was quick to plug in an route outdoors; the wire is this enough that I was able to route it through a nearby window. And it works great. Within a minute or so, the GPS was working and so was my Microcell.

My only negative about it would be that the connector is pretty flimsy and actually broke one day when the wire got tugged by accident when a friend's dog happened to hit it with a paw when looking out the window. It still works, but the connector basically broke. (Fwiw, I this was so cheap and worked so well for like 18 months that I just ordered a replacement.)

AT&T really should include this with the Microsell. The fact that they don't just tells me that they're out to rip off customers, because my Microcell was completely useless without it. But with it, it works great.

TP-LINK Archer T2UH AC600 High Gain Wireless Dual Band USB Adapter

I'll admit straight off the bat that I like TP-Link equipment. Up until a few years ago I'd never heard of them and always bought Linksys equipment, now most of my equipment is TP-Link.

In order to get the most from the TP-Link Archer you will need a dual band wireless router (most wireless routers nowadays are dual band). If you still have an older 2.4GHz single band router you can still use the TP-Link Archer albeit at the reduced speeds the 2.4GHz bandwidth allows.

TP-Link's Archer is a USB 2.0 wireless adapter. This allows it to be used on virtually any computer. Why not USB 3.0? Well this is a bit of a quandary that I can't answer. Even though most modern computers/laptops come with USB 3.0, you don't actually need the extra speed of the USB 3.0 interface for this adapter if you are using a single channel.

USB 2.0 supports up to 480Mbit/s, but a single antennae 802.11ac adapter running on 5GHz has a maximum transfer rate of 433Mbit/s. So USB 2.0 is all you actually need. However if you use the dual channel capability of this adapter (allowing you to send and receive on both the 2.4Ghz and the 5Ghz channels at the same time), you have a maximum transfer rate of 600Mbits (hence the AC600 in the products name), but that is more than the USB 2.0 standard allows therefore the limiting factor isn't the wireless adapter but the USB 2.0 interface itself. So one star off for that.

The wireless adapter itself is quite small and has a proper external aerial which swivels so that you can receive the strongest possible signal from your wireless router. You do have to watch this however when carrying it around on trips as the antennae looks like it could fairly easily snap off if snagged on something in your bag.

As mentioned the adapter attaches to your computer/laptop using a USB 2.0 interface which is at the top. The USB interface is actually on an extender cable of about 3 feet so that you can place the adapter slightly away from your computer to get a better signal if required (I see most people not pulling out the cable and just leaving the adapter as is).

Although the TP-Archer does come with it's own drivers CD, I never had to use it. Just plugged the adapter into my computer and it automatically detected it and was up and running in less than 2 minutes. About as easy as you can get.

I live in a 3 story house with my router being housed in one of the bedrooms on the top level. I plugged the adapter into a laptop and carried it around my house, even down to the very opposite corner from where the router sits and never experienced signal loss. I went out into my garden (which is fairly small) and still had a signal although at reduced strength. You shouldn't have a problem with range using this device.

Overall TP-Link have done it again, a nice, cheap although well made wireless adapter supporting the latest 802.11ac standards.