Wi-Fi is good in the study and hall, but in the living room you can only surf at 56k modem speed? Then your WLAN will not reach all the rooms of your home. The solution is a Powerline adapter , which can forward a bandwidth of 1,200 Mbit / s depending on the model. If you have few outlets in the house, models offer, which have an integrated front socket. If you are technically less well-versed, it pays to be one of the most popular plug-and-play products that simply plug in and work without further installation.
Purchase advice: How to find the right Powerline adapter in 2019
- Powerline adapters allow you to easily network hard-to-reach rooms from the power outlet to the Internet.
- The best powerline adapters have a wireless access point and integrate a power outlet.
- Pay attention to the maximum transmission speed so that you can transfer data as quickly as possible.
Long distances and thick concrete walls limit the range of the wireless router in your home. So that you also have good WLAN reception in the basement, garden and in the attic, you can connect Powerline WLAN adapters, also called dLAN adapters. What the technology is all about, how to properly connect the PowerLAN adapters, and what to look for in the selection, check out the great 2018 powerline adapter. Now find the best PowerLAN adapter for your needs and surf the web with reliable connection on the internet.
Tip: Powerline is ideal for rooms that are difficult to integrate into your home network via Wi-Fi or LAN.
1. What are the advantages of powerline adapters?
For Internet access in the house you have three options:
- You can route LAN cables throughout the house,
- use a wireless router with wireless repeaters or
- increase the network range with powerline adapters over the power lines.
If the WLAN network does not reach the desired room and you do not want to or are not allowed to lay LAN cables through the walls, the range of the network can be extended wirelessly with a WLAN repeater . The catch: WLAN repeaters halve the transmission rate. And separates a thick steel wall, the wireless signal from the desired room, the wireless repeater can not amplify the interrupted signal – another solution has her. Laying LAN cables through the house is always the most reliable solution, but also the most expensive.
The optimal compromise between reliable data transmission speed and simple installation is to send the data via the existing power line in the house or in the apartment. For this to work, you need the Powerline adapters. The following table summarizes the benefits of PowerLAN adapters:
- very easy installation
- no additional cabling
- very long range even over several floors
- safe, fast and stable connection
- thick steel walls are no obstacle
- Connection quality depends on the quality of the power lines in the house or apartment
- not always suitable for multi-circuit homes
- advertised transmission speeds are achieved only via LAN cable and not via WLAN
- cheap PowerLAN adapters interrupt the connection more often
2. How the powerline adapter works
In the minimum configuration, you plug two PowerLAN adapters in two rooms into the socket and the data is transferred via the 230 Volt mains. An adapter is located in the room with the router and is connected by LAN cable. The other adapter is in the desired room. The signal is modulated onto the power line by a series of signals between 2 and 68 MHz. In this way, the data exchange works through thick walls and over greater distances averaging 200 meters. Top models allow a range increase of up to 400 meters under ideal conditions. The connection from the end device to the powerline adapter then takes place either via a LAN cable or wirelessly via WiFi.
3. WLAN from the socket: How to connect Powerline WLAN adapters
The dLAN adapters extend the router signal via the mains to all rooms. In many cases, a powerline adapter set of 3 is good for getting started. In the room with the router, plug the PLC adapter into the socket and connect it via a LAN cable to the LAN port of the router. Then plug the extender into the desired room and the data connection is made via the mains. The PLC adapter integrates a wireless LAN access point, is a PLC wireless extender and you can also connect smartphones and other devices wirelessly to the home network. The extender kits are usually ready for immediate use without additional configuration. A pre-encryption is already implemented by the manufacturers and the network is directly protected during commissioning.
4. Purchasing advice: Selection criteria of the PowerLAN adapter
The offered PowerLAN adapters differ in the maximum possible data transfer rate and the additional equipment. The following table summarizes the offer:
Simple Powerlan adapter
Connection only possible via LAN cable
Powerlan adapter with two LAN ports
Connection of PC and NAS or other device in the room possible
PowerLAN wireless adapter
Connection additionally wireless via WiFi possible.
PowerLAN adapter with plugged socket
There is no outlet blocked.
4.1. Powerline adapter or Powerline WLAN adapter?
When selecting the starter kit, pay attention to the product name! A pure powerline adapter allows the connection of terminals only via LAN cable . This works wonderfully with the PC, laptop or smart TV , but the solution is not suitable for the connection of smartphones and tablets . In order to have WLAN reception in your attic or in the basement with your smartphone , you need a Powerline WLAN adapter . The device then acts as a Wi-Fi hotspot and you have full reception in each room.
The maximum possible range depends on the quality of the PowerLAN adapters and the power lines in the house or apartment. Under good conditions, ranges of up to 400 meters are possible.
4.3. Integrated socket
The simple dLAN adapter blocks the socket in which it is plugged. To be able to continue using the socket, it is best to buy an adapter with a power socket.
4.4. Connections – flexible with wireless LAN
In addition to an integrated socket, the best powerline adapters have additional features. In order to be able to connect the smartphone to the network in a far-flung space via an adapter, select a PowerLAN adapter with integrated WLAN router. If an Ethernet switch is installed, the device usually has two LAN ports and you can connect two devices via LAN cable.
4.5. Connect powerline adapters and consider bandwidth
For the Powerline Wi-Fi adapters, look for the supported Wi-Fi standard. For maximum fast data transfer speeds, the dLAN adapter must support the WLAN standard ac. With Devolo dLAN 1200, connected smartphones, tablets and notebooks can theoretically exchange data at speeds of up to 1200 Mbps. Network-enabled end devices such as desktop PCs and smart TVs can be connected via LAN cables as far as possible, while well-equipped powerline adapters have two LAN ports. In order for the data transmission with up to 1.2 Gigabit / s works, Telekom’s Powerline Adapter, TP Link Powerline Adapter and Powerline Adapter from Fritz must support the MIMO technology. The advantage: there are three wire pairs in the power cable (phase zero, Phase earth and zero earth) and thanks to MIMO, the adapters can use the fastest pairs of wires. Older models that support the simple Home Plug AV standard only transfer the data through the phase null wire pair. The maximum speeds are 200 or 500 Mbit / s. For maximum speed, make sure you support the HomePlug AV2 standard with MIMO technology. The new devices have backward compatibility.
Attention: In the Powerline adapter test of the trade journals shows itself: Even under ideal conditions reach devices with a theoretical speed of 1,200 Mbit / s in practice only 400 Mbit / s – which is more than enough for everyday applications. For terminals connected via WLAN, the data rate continues to drop.
4.6. Important manufacturers
Devolo Powerline adapters, devices from AVM and TP Link Powerline adapters are popular. Be sure to check compatibility when purchasing your Powerline Adapter. In the Powerline Adapter Comparison, some models are compatible with third-party devices, which gives you more flexibility for later expansion. When ordering, consider delivery, a cheap Powerline adapter is often not supplied with an Ethernet cable.
5. FAQ: Questions & Answers about the Powerline adapter purchase
5.1. Is there a difference between Powerline, PowerLAN and dLAN?
The different names all mean the same thing: Internet from the tin, via the electric circuit. dLAN is the abbreviation for “direct LAN”, Powerline the short form of Powerline Communication, often abbreviated to PLC and also the name PowerLAN means the same technology.
5.2. Is the powerline adapter also usable with separate circuits?
Without a coupling of the circuits, a connection is not possible – which is usually not desirable. Sometimes, however, it is possible to connect separate lines with a phase coupler. The installation must be done by the electrician.
5.3. What is the powerline adapter speed?
The maximum speed depends on the model and manufacturer. For the fastest possible transfer rates for the Powerline Adapter with WLAN, make sure that you support the ac standard. However, in powerline adapter tests of the magazines has shown that most products transmit the data only half as fast as the maximum possible speed is specified.
5.4. Can I use powerline adapters in the multiple socket?
Although it is possible to use a multiple socket, powerline problems can occur and the data transfer speed can be reduced. It is better to plug the PowerLAN adapter directly into the wall outlet, select a model with an integrated wall socket and connect the multiple socket to it.
5.5. How many dLAN adapters can I connect?
The maximum possible number depends on the manufacturer of the equipment and the conditions in your home. Take the information in the operating instructions into account. For many brands, the maximum number is 15. For single-family homes and large apartments, however, usually two to six powerline adapters are enough.
5.6. Is there a Powerline Adapter test winner of Stiftung Warentest?
The PowerLAN adapter test of Stiftung Warentest is from 2009 and thus outdated. More interesting is the Powerline Adapter Test of the magazines PC Magazin (2016) and Computer Bild (2016). The advantages of the technology are clearly demonstrated in the dLAN adapter test: Installation is child’s play and the device is completed in just a few minutes. With the dLAN adapter test, the magazines also check the connection stability and the maximum speeds during data transmission.