• Now's your chance win big! Join our community and get entered to win a RTX 2060 GPU, plus more! Join here.

    Pi Cast Episode 3 streams live on Tuesday, August 4th at 2:30 pm ET (7:30 PM BST). Watch live right here!

    Catch Scharon on the Tom's Hardware Show live on Thursday, August 6th at 2:00 pm ET (7:00 PM BST). Click here!

Question Recently set up a powerline connection with underwhelming results. Should I go back to wifi?

Jun 23, 2019
I was getting 100+ mbps wifh wifi, but I'm getting roughly 40mbps with ethernet. I mainly use my PC for gaming, and I'm not sure if I should stick with the slower ethernet connection, since it would be more reliable

Update: I'm getting lower latency and varying upload speeds with the ethernet connection. Weird
Last edited:


Powerline performance depends heavily on the length of the circuit in question, along with the age/quality of the wiring involved.

I'd suggest trying different outlets (and rooms). If different rooms, other side of the house etc perform better, then it's likely an issue with the length of the circuit. If you find similar results throughout (and wiring is original/the same age), then chances are good you're looking at an issue with the age/quality.

In terms of speed, Wifi sounds like a no-brainer. But, while Powerline adds latency, you may find ping to be improved via Powerline...

Saying that, if you're taking a 60% speed hit by implementing Powerline, I'd be surprised if your ping improved.... and if the age/quality of the wiring is the problem (or even length of circuit, potentially), you may find you experience random drop outs.
Reactions: SamirD
Key for games is the jitter. You can test on one of the sites that measure jitter. Games hate variable latency since they use the latency times to sync the client to the server. If it jumps around you get lag spikes.

Games need almost no bandwidth. Well under 1mbps up and down. Things like wow and other older games are under 300kbps in many cases.

Wifi if you get no interference will be better but there is no way to control the interference. Powerline any issues will be inside your house.

40mbps is a little slow but it depends on you electrial wires. It also depends on the units you purchased. The newer av2 units are much faster than av500 and especially av200.
Reactions: SamirD
As the two excellent posts above mine have said very well, your consistency should be better with powerline and the ping should be better (I see 5ms on our av500 units). But also as mentioned, you should be able to get better results than this with placement if you are using newer units with newer technology. Also, if you're looking at a wired connection, consider moca as that will work over cable wires but is truly full gigabit.