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niagh01
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Message 1 of 11

WIFI Extenders

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Hi, can anyone advise, what is the difference between the BT 11ac Dual Band N1200 Wi-Fi Range Extender, and the BT Mini Wi-Fi Home Hotspot 600 Kit. Both are the same price, does the mini wifi act like a power line adapter and in theory you get the speed at your hub at the secondary point where you may have a weaker signal.

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Message 2 of 11

Re: WIFI Extenders

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The range extender is just a wifi repeater and I wouldn't recommend one as they will need to be sited mid way between the hub and devices using it and is reliant on receiving a good wifi signal itself. The Hotspot 600 is a power line adaptor which can be sited precisely where needed, it also provides 2 Ethernet ports as well as the wifi signal.

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JoeeeeeeR
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Message 3 of 11

Re: WIFI Extenders

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Hi,

 

The other difference is that the Mini Hub has a different network name from the Range Extender (so you'll have to manually switch the network you're connected to as you move around the house).

 

 

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Message 4 of 11

Re: WIFI Extenders

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Nobody has mentioned mini hub.

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JoeeeeeeR
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Message 5 of 11

Re: WIFI Extenders

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So they didn't - I skim read 🙂

 

The point still stands for the Hotspot 600 though - it works in exactly the same way as the Mini Hub.

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Message 6 of 11

Re: WIFI Extenders

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I would always recommend using a different SSID in any case, that way you know which device you are connected to. You don't need to do anything manually, as long as your device has the networks saved it will switch from one to the other when it loses signal. Unless you use something with true roaming capability such as the Whole Home wifi, switching will not be seamless anyway.

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niagh01
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Message 7 of 11

Re: WIFI Extenders

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Hi and thanks to all who responded, slightly confused, which is the better product, the 1200 line extender or the 600 hotspot. I want to stream movies from a point in my home which has not got great wifi signal. I get the full 76 Meg at my hub with my Infinity 2 product, but drops consideably in the room with the TV. 

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Message 8 of 11

Re: WIFI Extenders

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I thought I made that clear in message 2. Wifi extenders are a poor choice, the hotspots are superior.

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JoeeeeeeR
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Message 9 of 11

Re: WIFI Extenders

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Hi @niagh01

 

I don't think it's actually as simple as what @licquorice is suggesting (at least not in my experience). I've tried both types of device for improving my home Wi-Fi, and found neither of them to be perfect.

 

1200 range extender (and other similar Wi-Fi repeaters)

The main benefit of these devices is that they broadcast out the same SSID as your main network. In my experience, this means that your wireless devices will automatically connect to whatever one is throwing out the stronger signal (meaning you're more likely to be on the network with the faster speed). The downside is that the overall speed they provide is not as good as the powerline-based devices, as they're repeating out Wi-Fi. This means that the speed of the wireless signal the extender broadcasts out will be limited by the fact it's degraded while travelling wireless between your hub and the extender.

 

600 hotspot (and other similar products based on powerlines😞

The good thing about these devices is that the data travels to them over powerlines, which means the signal they broadcast out will be not have degraded, and will be faster than the signal a range extender is rebroadcasting. The bad thing is that they have a different network name. The problem this led to in my experience is this:

 

  1. I start off connected to the closest hotspot (either my Home Hub or the Hotspot product), and have a good signal
  2. I then move around the house, to a place where the signal I’m connected to is weak, but not altogether gone.
  3. My devices don’t switch to the stronger signal, but stay connected to the weaker signal. The wireless speed I’m getting is now poor.
  4. I have to manually switch from one network to the other.

I noticed that different devices seem better at switching from one network to the other when the signal gets weak, but the experience of having to constantly remember to change network proved too irritating for my household.

 

My recommendation

  • If you’re looking to get the best possible speed for devices that are normally kept in the same room then go for the powerline product. As long as the device doesn’t move around the house too much then you won’t need to keep network switching.
  • If you’re looking to avoid having to manually network switch and don’t care about getting the maximum possible speed (just want it to be ‘good enough’) then go for the range extender products
  • If you want the best of both worlds, get something like the BT Whole Home Wi-Fi product. It’s very expensive (£300), but was the only product I’ve used that gave good wireless speeds AND a good experience.
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Message 10 of 11

Re: WIFI Extenders

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@JoeeeeeeRBroadcasting the same SSID is not a benefit in my opinion. Devices will switch between signals in exactly the same manner regardless of whether they have the same SSID or not, it makes no difference. There is no 'manual' switching involved unless you wish to force a switch (which you wouldn't be able to do if they both had the same SSID) As I have said previously, the advantage of different SSIDs is that you know what signal you are connecting to. The only way you will get seamless switching is if you have wifi devices that support it. Wifi repeaters and hotspots don't have the technology.

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