Wifi Extenders can come in handy when you want to extend your routers reach within your house, apartment, office, or ranch. You can connect as many extenders as you’d like to your main router or the extender to further expand reach. However, several factors come into play when deciding on which extender to buy such as the Bands (2.4 or 5 GHz), the standards 802.11a, 802.11b/g/n, and 802.11ac, etc. In this review, we’ve picked out the best extenders for your money so look no further and select one from the list below.
1. NETGEAR Nighthawk X4 AC2200
With MU-MIMO Technology
- MU-MIMO technology
- Supports home mesh for even distribution
- All devices are connected under one name
- Quite a big size
WiFi technology: 802.11a/b/g/n/ac | WiFi band: Dual Band 2.4 & 5 GHz | Maximum Speed: 2200Mbps | WPS: Yes
Netgear devices are pioneers in the networking category of hardware. For our first spot, we have their Nighthawk X4 AC2200 WiFi extender that comes with several things along with a mouthful of a name. MU-MIMO technology, mesh extending, fastest speeds, and a solid build, let’s take a look into the Nighthawk X4.
The Nighthawk X4 comes in a wall plug design as well as a desktop one. The footprint of this extender is rather large for a wall plugging extender. It has LEDs on the front and side as well as buttons for power, WPS, and a slider for choosing between extender and access point. There are no external antennas on it but the internal ones do their share of work really well. The green LED at the front indicated connection strength, helping you find the ideal spot.
There is a technology known as MU-MIMO, which stands for multi-user, multiple-input, and multiple outputs have been employed in this. Via this, the Nighthawk X4 can handle many more users with WiFi-oriented requests than any other. With the new 802.11ac protocol, this technology handles more devices without compromising speed. It supports dual-band 802.11ac and is capable of delivering speeds up to 2200Mbps. Usages of all sorts are made viable with the Nighthawk X4. The signal strength can focus exactly where the objects are placed for maximum speeds thanks to the “Beamforming” technology.
Another feature lets you use it as an extender or an access point. For a hotspot connection, the Nighthawk can switch over to work as an access point through a wired port. Additionally, using the analytics app by Netgear you can monitor things such as signal strength and network traffic. The setup is extremely simple and this extender works with almost any router available on the market. You don’t need to worry about compatibility with this one either.
The speed, design, compatibility, and ease of use all work together to make this a premium-grade WiFi extender. There are no external antennas which as a result, restrict the adjustability. Buyers may find some time to find the ideal spot with this due to only internal antennas. However, at the right spot, the Nighthawk works like a charm. There’s very little where you can go wrong with this as Nighthawk X4 is perfect for house and work environments.
2. TP-Link AC1200 RE355
Best Value WiFi Extender
- External antennas
- A very simple and quick setup
- Signal strength is uniform in all directions
- Signal strength and output bandwidth cannot be changed
- LED ring light sometimes indicates the wrong reading
WiFi technology: 802.11a/b/g/n/ac | WiFi band: Dual Band 2.4 & 5 GHz | Maximum Speed: 1200Mbps | WPS: Yes
The Chinese-based company, TP-Link has been gaining popularity throughout the world. That’s due to their remarkable products with very inexpensive and affordable price tags. WPS, Ethernet port, and just about any other feature you could ask for, all come in the TP-Link AC1200 WiFi extender.
This small-sized extender comes with a well-built plastic body in white color. On the outside, there are adjustable antennas that help out a lot in finding the optimal location and stable connection. There are LEDs, which are located at the front, for each of the two bands. With the ring LED, the blue light indicates a good connection whereas a red one means a poor connection. The “RE button” in the middle, is used to connect to the main router via WPS. Once a connection is established, the AC1200 is to be moved around until the best location is found. Simple enough.
This extender can entertain a maximum of 1200Mbps speed, which is just great at this price. The AC1200 can be switched between being used as an access point or an extender. This is useful when the base speed is low and an extender doesn’t complete the job. The switching and adjustable antennas work in harmony to give you the connection speed you need. This uses the 802.11a/b/g/n/ac protocols meaning you’re perfectly future-proof and can connect with any router supporting these protocols.
The dual bandwidth basically allows the 2.4GHz and 5GHz bands to be used for less and high demanding tasks respectively. The AC1200 has a “high-speed mode” which essentially combines the two bandwidths to deliver a maximized overall performance. When that happens, one band is dedicated to sending while others for receiving the data. With the TP-Link Tether app, you can set up and manage your devices and WiFi to check for improvements.
We do wish that the high gain antennas on the AC1200 had full 360 rotation instead of 180. Depending on where the central router is, the 180 rotation might somewhat of a restriction. However, the connection is stable and reliable. The price tag feels a little bit of a stretch but the net performance of this extender is still great. Overall, a great product with a slightly higher price.
3. Linksys AC1200 RE6700
Low-Price WiFi Extender
- Supports seamless roaming
- Compatible with a large number of routers
- Antennas are not labelled to indicate which is for 2.4GHz and which is for 5GHz
- IP addresses duplication
- Random disconnects
WiFi technology: 802.11a/b/g/n/ac | WiFi band: Dual Band 2.4 & 5 GHz | Maximum Speed: 300 & 1733 Mbps | WPS: Yes
Next up, we have a rather inexpensive solution for your home needs. Linksys’s AC1200 RE6700 compromises some over-the-top features and capabilities by having a much lower price. Ability to switch between bands, two internal high band antennas, color-coded LED lights to find the best placement. All of these and much more are packed inside Linksys’s AC1200 RE6700.
This model of Linksys extender has a rather minimalistic design which really works in their favor. There is an Ethernet port present for the fanatics looking for the best connection possible. There are LEDs on the extender itself to show connection strength. Instead, using Linksys’s Spot Finder technology, all of this is done via their mobile app. On the sides are two external antennas to help really nail the ideal spot.
The AC1200 RE6700 also comes with dual-band 2.4 and 5GHz frequencies for optimized speeds depending on which task needs doing. You can use the 2.4GHz band for surfing and 5GHz for gaming or streaming. Another tradeoff with these bands is speed and distance. The 2.4GHz has a wider range but has a relatively slower speed of 200Mbps whereas 5GHz has high speed but low distance and penetrating power.
This one features Beamforming technology as well, making online streaming over TVs, smartphones, etc a walk in the park. Not only that, the installation is pretty simple too, and can be done with a touch of the WPS button. You’re given the MU-MIMO for better consistent signals to all the nodes and Crossband technology. The Crossband technology maximizes the use of both bands simultaneously to prove higher speeds without interruption by using both bands together.
There is quite a huge number of users facing inconsistency with connections. We found that after connecting a large number of devices and switching over to the 5G band, there were random disconnects. Moreover, there are some cases of the AC1200 RE6700 duplicating IP addresses. This tends to happen when a large number of devices are connected to this extender. It can be worked around by a reboot but the issue is persistent and annoying when it happens.
The AC1200 RE6700 is a simple product. With an affordable price tag, it gets the job done albeit by cutting down on some performance parts. The inconsistencies over larger networks make their use for work environments not ideal. However, as a home-based solution, this extender is still a very impressive choice as home consumers will most likely not face any of these issues.
4. D-Link N300 DAP-1330
For Low-End Users
- Miniature size
- Signal remains consistent within the recommended coverage area
- Remains synchronized to eliminate random disconnects
- Single-band (only 2.4GHz)
- Needs to be facing the router
WiFi technology: 802.11a/b/g/n | WiFi band: Single Band 2.4GHz | Maximum Speed: 300Mbps | WPS: Yes
D-Link’s N300 DAP-1330 comes in with a cheap price, inconspicuously small size, and a mouthful of a name. For home consumers looking to just get the job done without using any extra features, this extender is the perfect fit. Keep on reading to find out why this might be just what you needed.
This extender in our list has a very small size meaning it can easily hide behind objects and be hard to spot. There are only two buttons on this, power and WPS. At the bottom is an Ethernet port and on the sides are 2 foldable antennas. At the top is a status LED for determining signal strength. Nothing too shabby so far.
The N300 DAP-1330 comes with a single-band 2.4GHz 802.11n wireless protocol. There is a 5GHz band for connectivity, meaning people are restricted to just one. It’s capable of delivering a maximum speed of 300Mbps at a large range. This is meant for medium-tier users and works fine for that use.
The omission of dual-band means that the 2.4GHz will cover long distances with greater penetration but at a slower speed. There are foldable omnidirectional antennas so this is suitable for 2-3 story houses looking for an easy solution. This extender can be set up using the WPX button, QRS app, or a browser.
As long as there is not a risk of too much traffic on the network, the N300 DAP-1330 is just about right for use. It is cost-effective as some high-tier features have been omitted such as the 802.11ac band. This one may not be the fastest out there but it is for sure, an easy and quick solution for fixing the dead zones in the house.
5. MSRM Wireless-N Extender
- Can work as an extender as well as access point and router
- Consistent performance in linear distances
- Incredibly rare disconnects
- Does not increase number of devices router can handle
- No mesh connectivity so different SSID names are needed
WiFi technology: 802.11n | WiFi band: Single Band 2.4GHz | Maximum Speed: 302Mbps | WPS: Yes
To close it all, we need to find a solution for the average folk out there looking for a fix. MSRM has an answer for those too with their WiFi extender with Ethernet port and universal compatibility.
The EX2700 has a blocky design with white black glass and plastic. There is a button for power, WPS, and factory reset. The plastic doesn’t feel cheap at all and even with a superbly low market price, Netgear doesn’t disappoint in terms of hardware quality. There is an Ethernet port at the bottom as well. The glass panel has lights for power, network, and WiFi.
This extender comes in with a single band of 2.4 GHz 802.11n. It is capable of delivering a maximum speed of 302Mbps but, in all honesty, this extender doing that feels like a long stretch. The setup is fairly easy and straightforward with WPS. This is a 2.4GHz band extender, employing 802.11n protocol which results in a decreased speed than what 802.11ac one would offer.
The EX2700, quite honestly, has nothing special or extraordinary about it. It even employes the 802.11n wireless protocol, meaning it may not be compatible with every router. Additionally, it should be noted that this extender does not increase the total number of devices that can be connected. But, the winner is the low price it has and the incredible and friendly customer support. For that, it is one of the easiest and quickest solutions on the market. Disconnections to the main router are super rare and it provides consistent speeds throughout the household.