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What device should I buy?


Dec 13, 2011
So I'm moving to a house where I will not have wired internet connection since the router is far away from my room. I don't have a wireless adapter in my desktop computer either, so what should I do to have maximized internet connection?

Well, buying a wireless adapter is certainlly an option, but I was also considering getting a device such as a repeater/range extender that converts the wireless signal into wired connection so I can connect it to the computer with an ethernet cable. I'm not sure about the difference between a repeater and a range extender since they seem to serve the same purpose as long as they both have an ethernet jack for the computer.

I was checking out a few products
1. http://www.futureshop.ca/en-CA/product/asus-asus-dual-band-pci-e-adapter-pce-ac66-pce-ac66/10237870.aspx?path=c9464e89ecc208ff8aaac48ab006819fen02


3. http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16833122454

and some other ones... I'm not really sure what's best for my situation. The thing is, I'm not trying to amplify the wireless signal for other people in the house. I only need the fastest connection possible for my computer, which doesn't have a wireless card yet.

Help me out folks!
What you are looking for if you want a ethernet to wireless converter is a BRIDGE. Most the repeater things do this as well as repeat. It will be cheaper and work better if you only have a single wireless signal to deal with. Still you can disable the repeater function in most these units and run it as a bridge only. All depends on cost if it is worth buying a feature and then turning it off.

Be very careful about chasing the numbers...especially the 802.11ac stuff. You cannot run faster than the router you are connecting to and even then you can never run faster than your internet provider. So you want to match what you buy to your router. So if your router only does 2.4g at 150m it does no good to buy dual band adapters or get 300m or 450m speeds on 2.4g since it will never be used. If you have a dual band router you want to try to use 2.4g first since you will get more distance but it is also likely you will get more interference from neighbors. No way to predict since every house is different.

"I only need the fastest connection possible for my computer"
You might be barking up the wrong tree then...

A Repeater (aka Range Extender) only rebroadcasts the wireless signal and is used to make the wireless network coverage area bigger... and you would still need your desktop to have the ability to receive wireless.

What you want is called a wireless bridge.
Some routers (or access points) have the ability to act as a wireless bridge.
This is an example:

This picture is a visual example of a wireless bridge and I'm certain that is what you want.

If you have a spare router laying around (and it doesn't have the ability to act as a wireless bridge) for many of them you can install DD-WRT firmware and use that to configure a router to act as a wireless bridge. (OR you can buy one)
There is a major downside to doing this though... I don't understand why but when you use a wireless bridge you only get 50% of the bandwidth and if your goal is as much as possible I'd pass on this option... (I did)

What to do?...

It would be cheaper and easier to just buy a wireless USB adapter.
You could get an internal card instead but you'd have to install that inside your computer so not quite as simple. So USB adapter still easiest option.

Another easy option that can offer more speed depending on your wireless and the set you buy but you should look into "Powerline Networking". You will need a set of 2.

This kit for example can transfer 1/2 a gigabit per second and no reduced bandwidth from bridging.

Also, these adapters can be used to can be used for many different networking purposes like as a range extender or a switch but I wouldn't get all fancy if I was you... Unless you actually NEED to connect more that 1 wired device near your desktop.

Go with a USB wireless adapter for the cheaper easier option.
Go with a Powerline Kit for the fastest solution.

Note: Look for "HomePlug AV" not the older "HomePlug" or "HomePlug 1.0 Turbo"

Final Note: The speed you get at home won't always make your internet faster. 99% of the time the bottleneck is the internet provider.

Example: My internet connection is maxed at 30mbps.
So if my goal is to get the fastest internet connection possible all I need to do is get at least 30mbps (which is REALLY EASY).
My desktop is connected using a wire at 100mbps this FAR exceeds the speed of my internet provider.

Most Wireless N connections run at 300mbps (or faster depending on the devices used) which is faster than my current wired connection. (Not necessarily more reliable though.) Either way the internet isn't going to be any faster. Wireless interference and wireless traffic can cause that 300mbps to be much slower, also wireless connections have a slightly higher latency. (But you can still watch HD movies and play games without noticing unless there is a lot of interference or wireless traffic.)

So why do people want fast in home connections? (Typically people just don't know any better but there are a few good reasons to have a fast in home network.)
1. So they can transfer files from one computer (or device) to another quickly. Great if you have a personal cloud backup storage device. (but most people don't)
2. Any type of video streaming from one device to another.