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Better range in the house: wifi repeater, ethernet/powerline, or ethernet /coax?

Better range in the house: wifi repeater, ethernet/powerline, or ethernet /coax?

Old Jan 3, 18, 11:18 am
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Better range in the house: wifi repeater, ethernet/powerline, or ethernet /coax?

The wifi for my computer in my basement man cave is sometimes spotty/slow/high latency.

Which of these three options would you recommend?

a) "Traditional" wifi repeater
b) Ethernet over powerline (I know that the circuit in the man cave is not the same circuit as the router)
c) Ethernet over coax -- the house is wired for cable (currently not in use), but I'm sure that the cable outlets for each location go through some sort of junction box.

What would you recommend? Price IS an object, but so is better and more consistent speed/latency.
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Old Jan 3, 18, 11:42 am
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Originally Posted by cblaisd View Post
The wifi for my computer in my basement man cave is sometimes spotty/slow/high latency.

Which of these three options would you recommend?

a) "Traditional" wifi repeater
b) Ethernet over powerline (I know that the circuit in the man cave is not the same circuit as the router)
c) Ethernet over coax -- the house is wired for cable (currently not in use), but I'm sure that the cable outlets for each location go through some sort of junction box.

What would you recommend? Price IS an object, but so is better and more consistent speed/latency.
MoCA (Ethernet over Coax) has been remarkably fast and trouble-free for me. I'm using Actiontec ECB6200 MoCA 2.0 adapters to provide internet access to an in-law apartment above a detached garage on our property that's about 250 feet from the main house.

When I bought them a year ago, they were $150/pair, I also needed a PoE filter for the cable service connection ($6, keeps the neighbors from seeing my stuff) and a wi-fi access point at the apartment end.

If the only connection is your computer, though, you can plug straight into the MoCA adapter. I'd recommend getting a switch or wi-fi access point for extra flexibility, and those are dirt cheap these days.
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Old Jan 3, 18, 11:42 am
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Of the three your best performance will be ethernet over coax (called MoCa). You'll need two MoCa adapters, and you can expand to more later if needed. Newer MoCa standards allow up to 1.3 Gbps I believe.

Powerline adapters are hit or miss for me. A wifi repeater will halve your available wifi bandwidth.

ETA: Of course, running an ethernet cable is the simplest and most reliable method of all if that's an option.

Last edited by gfunkdave; Jan 3, 18 at 11:50 am
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Old Jan 3, 18, 11:59 am
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I also concur that MoCA is much more stable than powerline, especially if you're in an older home.
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Old Jan 3, 18, 12:14 pm
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Pulling ethernet cable is not an option....

Any recommendations for least expensive but decent MoCA adapters?
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Old Jan 3, 18, 12:44 pm
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Originally Posted by cblaisd View Post
Pulling ethernet cable is not an option....

Any recommendations for least expensive but decent MoCA adapters?
The best deal I can find on the Actiontec ECB6200K02 (the 2-pack) is $149.99 @ Newegg.

I did a lot of research on ethernet over coax options when we were in the process of buying our new place and these kept coming up as the best solution. They'll give you gigabit performance and they're very reliable.
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Old Jan 3, 18, 12:58 pm
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Thank you!

Do you think that these
https://www.ebay.com/itm/2-Pack-a-DI...r/152782499185
are somehow proprietary to DirecTV?
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Old Jan 3, 18, 1:39 pm
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Originally Posted by cblaisd View Post
Thank you!

Do you think that these
https://www.ebay.com/itm/2-Pack-a-DI...r/152782499185
are somehow proprietary to DirecTV?
No, they probably just don't use the same frequencies that DirecTV does. They will work fine for you if you don't use your coax for anything else. But if you want to add more MoCa adapters in the future you might have to buy these same ones.
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Old Jan 3, 18, 1:46 pm
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How old is your router? I solved the problem in my house by buying a new one with a few antennae - Linksys EA7500.

Also be sure you're not running on the "newest, greatest" 5GHz channel - it has a shorter range.

I had been using a repeater - it significantly cut throughput, though my daughter didn't need more in her room than the 15Mbps or so left from the original 100Mbps, after the repeater.
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Old Jan 3, 18, 2:19 pm
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Orbi fixed this for me
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Old Jan 3, 18, 2:21 pm
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Originally Posted by cblaisd View Post
Thank you!

Do you think that these
https://www.ebay.com/itm/2-Pack-a-DI...r/152782499185
are somehow proprietary to DirecTV?
The key takeaway from gfunkave's response is "They will work fine for you if you don't use your coax for anything else." These adapters will not coexist with cable TV; they're exclusively for use with DirectTV (or, obviously, no television service provider at all).

IF you decide to try them, you should probably disconnect your internal cable network from the PoE; you may cause headaches for nearby neighbors.

Those DECA adapters are also significantly slower than the Actiontec MoCA adapters, at 100Mb/s. The Actiontecs effectively offer gigabit (10x) performance.
gfunkdave likes this.

Last edited by Dodge DeBoulet; Jan 3, 18 at 5:42 pm Reason: bits vs Bytes
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Old Jan 3, 18, 4:58 pm
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I have been using the DirecTV Deca for years now and aside from the limitations that have already been mentioned (top speed limit; need a DirecTV SWM system), they work flawlessly for me and the bandwidth is enough for my use. YMMV
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Old Jan 3, 18, 10:10 pm
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Originally Posted by gfunkdave View Post
Powerline adapters are hit or miss for me.
I installed some cheap powerline Ethernet boxes at my parents' house because I figured they were the least hassle. Knowing what I know now I'd probably try other options first but if one has the right expectations (and good enough wiring), they can work okay.

For my parents, they work well enough to allow a TiVo (main unit + Mini) and desktop PC at the other end of the house to connect to the router in the living room--albeit with internet speed tests clocking in at about half of what they pay for. That's still okay enough for what my mom uses the desktop for, though.
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Old Jan 4, 18, 12:43 am
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Originally Posted by cblaisd View Post
The wifi for my computer in my basement man cave is sometimes spotty/slow/high latency.

Which of these three options would you recommend?

a) "Traditional" wifi repeater
b) Ethernet over powerline (I know that the circuit in the man cave is not the same circuit as the router)
c) Ethernet over coax -- the house is wired for cable (currently not in use), but I'm sure that the cable outlets for each location go through some sort of junction box.

What would you recommend? Price IS an object, but so is better and more consistent speed/latency.
I'm not a network genius by any stretch, but I seem to do a pretty good job of setting up my home, as well as others that I know. I switched routers last year and now get coverage in every corner of my home. To me that is impressive, as we not only have a ton of wireless devices, but I'm also into Home Automation stuff as well. At any given time I have 30 devices connected to my network. Shoot me a PM, as we are overdue for a beer.
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Old Jan 4, 18, 10:30 pm
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I know you said this isn't an option, but I'll ask anyway since that's my profession... for the amount you're going to spend on two MoCA adapters, having an electrician run a line is probably in a similar range. Why not go that route?
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