Wifi extenders are a valuable asset for home use, outdoor use, and gaming. The average modem’s range is usually fine for a small home or apartment, but a large home will definitely benefit from some form of range booster. Netgear, TP-Link, and Linksys are all capable companies, each with their own line of interesting products. These companies all boast an impressive range of products, but today we’ll specifically focus on Wifi Extenders.
- Best for Affordability: Linksys
- Best for Effectiveness: TP-Link
- Best for Ease of Use: Netgear
- Best for Versatility: Netgear
- Best Overall: Netgear
The prices are closely comparable, but Linksys has the widest base of affordable options in relation to the services provided by each extender. Each of their corresponding counterparts from TP-Link and Netgear is priced faintly higher. For example, the Linksys AC750 covers 1000 square feet and costs less than $40.
- ELIMINATE DEAD ZONES: Easily expand your home WiFi to enjoy uninterrupted streaming, smooth online gaming, and more with the Linksys AC750 BOOST WiFi Range Extender (RE6300). The AC750 BOOST extends your existing WiFi range up to 1,000 square feet so you can enjoy a stronger WiFi signal--even outdoors.
- WORKS WITH ALL WIFI ROUTERS: The AC750 BOOST is compatible with all WiFi routers, including your existing unit or those from service providers. Easily expand WiFi without the need to modify any of your router's settings.
- EASY SETUP OPTIONS FOR OPTIMAL PLACEMENT: Simply press the Push Button Connect feature on the AC750 BOOST to automatically sync it to your router. Simple setup from a smartphone, tablet, or laptop.
- STRENGTHENS WIFI CONNECTION WITH DUAL BANDS: Stream movies, play games online, and browse the Web without interruptions, thanks to the range extender's simultaneous wireless dual bands. The AC750 BOOST features data transfer speeds up to N300 + AC433 Mbps* and can also focus the WiFi signal directly to your connected devices for optimal performance, thanks to Beamforming Technology.
- CROSSBAND TECHNOLOGY MAXIMIZES WIFI: Crossband Technology maximizes the simultaneous use of both bands for high-speed data transfer and uninterrupted streaming and gaming
TP-Link doesn’t need to overwhelm its competitors with endless variations of the same device. They offer a full line of devices that are affordable and thoroughly effective. Other companies like Netgear have very specific products for very specific needs at a very specific price. TP-Link offers fewer products, but the devices that they do sell are well above board for a reasonable price. The TP-Link AC1900 can cover 2800 square feet and 35 devices. It is a very effective unit.
- Fast AC1900 Dual Band WiFi - Simultaneous 600Mbps on 2.4GHz plus 1300Mbps on 5GHz
- Better WiFi Coverage with 3 Antennas - Three adjustable external antennas provide optimal Wi-Fi coverage and reliable connections
- Gigabit Ethernet port - Act as a wireless adapter to connect a wired device to your network at Gigabit speed
- Intelligent Signal Light - Help to find the best location for optimal Wi-Fi coverage by showing the signal strength
- AP Mode - Create a new WiFi access point to enhance your wired network with WiFi capability
Linksys came in at a close second place, but Netgear wins for ease of use. They both have very simple set-up instructions for their basic units, but it seems that Netgear has significantly better support options. Their UX design helps to guide you to an answer whereas Linksys only has contact options. The most basic devices need only to be plugged into the wall and then connected to the system through an app. The Netgear EX3700 is simple to use and easy to set up while still being effective.
- EXTENDED WIRELESS COVERAGE: Adds Wi-Fi range coverage up to 1000 sq ft, and connects up to 15 devices such as laptops, smartphones, speakers, IP cameras, tablets, IoT devices, and more.
- AC750 WI-FI SPEED: Provides up to 750Mbps performance using dual-band and patented FastLane(TM) technology.
- UNIVERSAL COMPATIBILITY: Works with any wireless router, gateway, or cable modem with Wi-Fi.
- WIRED ETHERNET PORT: Simply plug in game consoles, streaming players, or other nearby wired devices using the one 10/100M port for maximum speed.
- SAFE & SECURE: Supports WEP and WPA/WPA2 wireless security protocols.
A Wifi extender doesn’t necessarily need a lot of options. Most people are happy if all it does is extend the WIfi. Netgear wins the versatility category for the sheer depth of options. There are so many different variations of each product that you can really fine-tune your shopping experience to exactly meet your needs. For example, the Netgear EX 7300 covers 2300 square feet and 40 devices.
- Extends WiFi range coverage up to 2300 square feet, and connects up to 40 devices such as laptops, smartphones, speakers, IP cameras, tablets, Iot devices, and more
- Uses your existing network SSID name so you never get disconnected as you move around your home or office
- Provides up to 2200 Mbps wireless speed performance using dual-band and patented FastLane(TM) technology for demanding HD streaming and online gaming.
- Works with any wireless router, gateway, or cable modem with Wi-Fi.
- Simply plug in game consoles, streaming players, or other wired devices into the one Gigabit port for maximum speed.
Not to belabor the point, but Netgear is the clear winner due to the depth, range, and reliability of their products. TP-Link and Linksys are both solid choices, but Netgear just overwhelms them with choice and support. The Netgear Nighthawk CAX30S may cost a bit more, but you definitely get what you pay for.
- Compatible with major cable internet providers including Xfinity, Spectrum, Cox and more. NOT compatible with Verizon, AT&T, CenturyLink, DSL providers, DirecTV, DISH and any bundled voice service
- Best for cable provider plans up to 2Gbps
- Coverage up to 2,500 sq. ft. and 25 concurrent devices with dual-band WiFi 6 (AX2700) speed (up to 2.7Gbps)
- Plug in computers, game consoles, streaming players, storage drive, and more with 4 Gigabit Ethernet ports and 1 USB 3.0 port
- DOCSIS 3.1 and 32x8 channel bonding
How To Pick The Best Wifi Extenders of 2022: Step by Step
Choosing the right Wifi extender for you is simple if you do your research. Understanding your budget, your coverage needs, and the complexity of the device you choose are the most important things to focus on when making this purchase.
For any purchase, it’s good to decide on how much you expect to spend on said item. A realistic budget can help to guide you to the unit that best suits your needs. You’ll have to ask yourself about what you need to accomplish with a Wifi extender in your current situation. Obviously, everyone would like to have a strong internet connection where they can, but that’s not currently the case for most people. These same people will buy a Wifi extender to cover as much area that they regularly occupy as possible. Any extender for home use should easily fit into the average person’s budget.
If you don’t have Wifi anywhere other than the room with the modem, then you would benefit from a Wifi extender. You’ll have to decide how much coverage you need. Is it just for gaming in a small home, or do you need a serious range booster for outdoor service or connection throughout a large home? Wanting to text on an outdoor patio is different than using that same patio for gaming. You’ll need to anticipate your needs so that you don’t waste time and money by purchasing a model that falls short. Conversely, you don’t want to overspend on coverage that you will never use.
A large home and a small home have different needs when it comes to Wifi extenders. The large home is usually looking to maximize distance while a small home is regularly looking to get a signal booster to maximize strength through walls and floors. Focusing on satisfying your current needs and you can always reevaluate your decision if you feel like you missed the mark. The most important point is that your problem has been solved in a satisfactory way.
What To Know Before Buying a Wifi Extender
It’s important to buy the right device for your specific home. There’s no need for you to go over budget for something that you don’t need and won’t use. Understanding your personal budget and personal needs will help to guide you when you decide to purchase a Wifi extender. Have the desired range in mind while shopping for an extender.
Using a Wifi Extender: What it’s Like
Having a Wifi Extender simply makes things a lot easier when it comes to connecting to the internet. Once you have it functional, you’ll wonder how you survived without it. It can strengthen and extend your internet connection which allows you greater effectiveness and freedom with your internet connection.
Last update on 2022-10-06 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API