TP-Link AC750 WiFi Range Extender, made by
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This range extender provides huge additional coverage, and can easily
solve such Wi-Fi issues as blind spots, weak signal areas, and "outside the
bubble" problems. The typical small office encounters these more often than
the typical home does. But if you're thinking of this for your home then
you've probably been frustrated by taking your laptop to a neighbor's to
show them some video or other great online find, only to discover your Wi-Fi
doesn't reach far enough.
So you go back home and download the video, then walk over to show your
neighbor. Or if it's a Website, you go home and write down the URL then walk
back over and then type it into the browser on their computer. Or maybe they
decide to give you access as a guest, but that involves looking up their
router settings and they can't remember where they filed that information.
Now you can eliminate that entire series of wasted steps and just get on
with sharing your great find.
Before opening the box, I saw on its bottom that this has a two-year
warranty and unlimited tech support (24 hrs a day, 7 days a week). That was
the first sign that I was going to be in for a good user experience. Nobody
puts out a two-year warranty unless their product is really well-made, and
nobody provides unlimited tech support (especially in this product price
range) unless they've made the product just about idiot-proof.
From the moment I opened the package, I had one pleasant surprise after
another. The attention to detail is amazing, and this is truly a quality
Typically with tech gadgets you get one unpleasant surprise after
another. It normally begins with a crappy package that requires the Jaws of
Life to open. This came in a nice box that just slides open. From there, it
My first step in trying this out was to read the Quick Installation
Guide. As the cover of this guide states, there are two options for set-up.
Option One for set-up looked a bit complicated, but doable. By "a bit
complicated" I mean only a bit. Mainly, it would consist of looking up my
router settings and going through the same process I use when adding a
device or user to my wireless network. The only reason this is "a bit
complicated" is I have a secure network with user ID and password to enter
so it's necessary to look up those settings.
Then I read Option 2. I thought, "You have got to be kidding." Can it
really be so simple? This option basically gives you a pushbutton method
that automatically registers the extender if your router has a WPS button. I
looked on the back of my router, and sure enough it has this button. I
pushed it, and the extender then did exactly as the guide said it would.
Gee, that took all of a quarter second....
The next step is to move the extender to the desired location. I put mine
in the farthest indoor position from my router.
Without the extender, the range inside my home drops from five bars to
four bars at the interior periphery. I lose the signal altogether when I get
to about 1/3 across either next door neighbor's front yard on a line very
close to the house (think horizontal) or to the backyard fence in a position
directly across from my router (think horizontal) or to within about 15 feet
of the farthest corner of my backyard (think diagonal).
With the extender, I had 5 bars at all of these positions. I even had 5
bars across the street at their front door. I live mid-block, and I actually
had to walk to the end of the block to get it to dip to 4 bars. This is far
more range extension than I could have gotten by running another router off
an Ethernet connection to my existing router (an idea I had been toying
with, but that's a very long Ethernet cable). I had also looked at running a
second router off the first wirelessly, but this seemed problematic at best.
This extender is just a device that plugs into any household receptacle.
You can move it around if you want to. So let's say you have a guest
bedroom; you can run the device from there to get this huge coverage. If a
guest stays and you don't want them to be bothered by the status lights, you
can move this to the hallway; as a bonus, the status lights act as a free
night light for your guest!
While this extender is perfect for residential applications, I can also
see how it solves problems in the typical small office. Let's say you own a
small company with a dozen employees. The space you rent is in a strip mall
style office park, and the shape is such that your router won't quite cover
the whole area. A friend of mine has such an office; it has an upstairs plus
a rear storage area. The typical router won't cover all of that, partly
because there's so much steel in the way and partly because of the
geometry/distance involved. He could plug this extender into any of several
convenient places, and eliminate all the blind spots.
I haven't evaluated other products in this category, so can't compare
this to the competition. But given the quality, performance, price, and ease
of set-up, I don't see a need to do that.