Best Wi-Fi Extenders in the UK

Review & Comparison, Last Update November 6, 2019
Want to have Wi-Fi in a yard next to your house? Or your phone doesn’t show all 4 bars on the second floor of your house? Then grab a Wi-Fi extender and expand the boundaries of your wireless router's signal. ...Read more ...Read less
BEST 2019
PROS
CONS
OUR VERDICT
Designated Areas
Data Interface
Antennas
Power Supply
Speed
Network Standards
Access and Data Protection
Warranty
 
PROS

Lan-port has a speed of 1000 mbps and boasts a modern auto-sensing technology: the connected devices automatically exchange data to establish the optimal operation mode and data transfer rate.

CONS

Due to its large size it may restrict access to adjacent outlets.

OUR VERDICT

This model is equipped with 3 external antennas, therefore it is able to expand the area of Wi-Fi coverage by as much as 900 square meters. And the maximum data transfer rate over a wireless network up to 1750 Mbps will help it to cover the needs of large houses and medium-sized offices.

detailed parameters
Designated Areas

Large houses, offices

Data Interface

1 x Lan (RJ45) port, Wi-Fi

Antennas

3 external antennas

Power Supply

AC (directly in wall outlet)

Speed

5GHz: Up to 1300 Mbps

2.4GHz: Up to 450 Mbps

LAN-port: up to 1000 Mbps

Network Standards

IEEE 802.11b/g/n/ac

Access and Data Protection

64/128-bit WEP, WPA-PSK/WPA2-PSK

Warranty

3 years

PROS

The case has a mechanical switch that allows you to select the optimal frequency band, based on the frequency of your router. Thus, you can achieve maximum data transfer speed and significantly reduce wireless congestion.

CONS

Some firmware versions are unstable (may require an update).

OUR VERDICT

If each family member in your house has several high-tech gadgets, and you want to ensure a stable connection with each of the devices, this Booster will help you for sure: watching movies or playing games online will not have any delays.

detailed parameters
Designated Areas

Medium to large houses

Data Interface

1 x Lan (RJ45) port, Wi-Fi

Antennas

Internal antennas

Power Supply

AC (directly in wall outlet)

Speed

5GHz: Up to 867 Mbps

2.4GHz: Up to 300 Mbps

LAN-port: Up to 100 Mbps

Network Standards

IEEE 802.11b/g/n/ac

Access and Data Protection

64/128-bit WEP, WPA-PSK/WPA2-PSK

Warranty

3 years

PROS
Official NETGEAR Android app is available for phones and tablets to check the Wi-Fi signal strength. Handy for choosing the right placement of the device.
CONS

Works only at 2.4 GHz.

OUR VERDICT
Balanced Wi-Fi extender with a working range enough to cover small houses will provide you with a fast and stable connection. This Netgear model also has 1 LAN port to get a signal to the device that has no Wi-Fi receiver.
detailed parameters
Designated Areas
Small and medium houses
Data Interface

Wi-Fi, 1 x LAN port

Antennas

2 external antennas

Power Supply
Directly in an outlet, Supports 100 V - 240 V AC wiring
Speed

2.4GHz: Up to 300 Mbps

LAN: Up to 100 Mbps

Network Standards
IEEE 802.11n
Access and Data Protection
WPA-PSK WPA2-PSK WEP
Warranty
1 year
PROS

This model is able to automatically switch from its standard mode to the energy-saving one when no one is using the network or when minimum data transfer speed is required; cut your extender energy consumption up to 85%.

CONS

Sensitive to every voltage fluctuation.

OUR VERDICT

Affordable and useful, this set by TP-LINK will help you widen your home network in places where you can't drag the LAN cable. The extender has 2 LAN ports for wired connection and a Wi-Fi module for the wireless one.

detailed parameters
Designated Areas

Medium to large houses

Data Interface

Adapter: 1 x LAN Port (RJ-45) 

Extender: 2 x LAN Ports (RJ-45), Wi-Fi
Antennas

Internal antennas in extender

Power Supply

Adapter: AC (directly in wall outlet)

Extender: AC (directly in wall outlet)

Speed

2.4GHz: Up to 300 Mbps

LAN: up to 100 Mbps

Network Standards

Powerline: HomePlug AV2, HomePlug AV, IEEE 1901, IEEE 802.3, IEEE 802.3u, IEEE 802.3, IEEE 802.3ab

Network: IEEE 802.11b/g/n

Access and Data Protection

64/128-bit WEP, WPA-PSK/WPA2-PSK

Warranty

3 years

PROS

The Spot Finder Technology coupled with the LED indicator makes it possible to find the best spot for the extender without employing any additional devices or software.

CONS

Might heat up.

OUR VERDICT

If you live in a medium-sized or big house, this compact yet high-performing model is a good option: its 2 powerful antennas provide fast data transfer and the beamforming technology makes for a steady connection.

detailed parameters
Designated Areas

Medium to large houses

Data Interface

Wi-Fi, 1 x LAN port

Antennas

2 external antennas

Power Supply

AC (directly in wall outlet)

Speed

5GHz: Up to 867 Mbps

2.4GHz: Up to 300 Mbps

LAN: Up to 1000 Mbps

Network Standards

IEEE 802.11b/g/n/ac

Access and Data Protection

64/128-bit WEP, WPA-PSK/WPA2-PSK

Warranty

2 years

TP-LINK RE450

High Quality All Around

In the world of information technologies, there are always some kinds of products that sacrifice some of its aspects in favour of others and those that instead focus on delivering the best they can do in every single category. It's not at all uncommon to find that products with great features also feature some kind of trade-offs that cut into the value they would otherwise provide. Though, generally speaking, this sort of approach entails a relatively mediocre quality of all of these elements, the TP-LINK RE450 Universal Dual Band Wi-Fi Booster is one of those welcome exceptions that exudes high quality in just about every single area.

To get the ball rolling, this Wi-Fi router booster offers a fairly solid connection speed, with up to 1300 Mbps on a 5GHz network and up to 450 Mbps on a 2.4GHz one. The aforementioned networks are secured with the help of three external dual-band antennas that extend the coverage of your wireless signal and its reliability, effectively removing any potential dead zones from your house or your place of business. Given that both of the bandwidths utilise the Wireless-AC technology, you'll be able to rest assured knowing that the power of the signal will be able to match its range.

Review of TP-LINK RE450 WiFi Range Extender (AC1750)

One Touch Setup

Another great feature of this wireless router is its Gigabit ethernet port, offering a high speed wired connection that gives you plenty of flexibility in connecting devices that either do not have wireless capabilities, or that only support slower speed standards from the past. This is perfect for something such as a desktop computer or a game console that you want to connect without having to shell out more money for a wireless adapter.

Lastly, even though this TP-Link Wi-Fi booster is essentially an orthodox all-rounder, the model does incorporate a fairly unique Intelligent Signal Indicator that comes with an RE button for one-touch setup, making the setup process of the router quite easy, especially for those who are always intimidated by such things. The blue light will indicate that the connection is solid and the red one will be reserved for those occasions when it isn't, letting you quickly and easily check the status of your connection without having to go into the firmware. All in all, the TP-LINK RE450 Universal Dual Band Wi-Fi Booster is a reliable and well-rounded model that will be a perfect fit for the kind of clientele that would choose a versatile device over a specific one any day of the week.

TP-LINK RE450 WiFi Range Extender (AC1750) in the use

Additional Info

User Manual     Manufacturer


 

BT 1200

Stable Wireless Connectivity

There are a large number of factors that can cause wireless connectivity problems with wireless networks. Although having a weak signal is one of the most common problems, another issue that wireless networks tend to encounter is wireless interference. This is often caused by other wireless networks or devices in the area that happen to be using the same frequency as the wireless network, which can cause the overlapping signals to interfere with each other. In such cases as this, most wireless range extenders will do little to help mitigate connectivity issues.

The BT 1200 Wi-Fi Range Extender is one such device that doesn't have to experience problems with wireless interference. This WiFi range extender features an external switch that lets you change the frequency band used by the extender, letting you cycle through until you find the one with the clearest, strongest signal. This lets you optimise your wireless network for getting the best data transfer speeds throughout its entirety without having to worry about interference limiting your network speeds. This feature makes this wireless range extender perfect for areas that have a lot of wireless traffic or that are in range of other wireless networks.

Review of BT 1200 Wi-Fi Range Extender (AC1200)

Easy Positioning

A common issue that people often encounter with using a WiFi range extender is with where exactly the device should go. With most devices, it's not always clear where the extender should go in order to maximise the range of the wireless network while still maintaining a strong, stable connection throughout the area. With this device, though, you're in luck. The external casing of the device includes indicator lights that will help you with finding the optimal placement of the range extender. The indicator lights will show whether the device is too close or too far away from the wireless router, while a middle light will indicate when it is in an optimal location.

Along with the great features highlighted above, this wireless range extender includes most everything that one should expect from such a device. The range extender supports 11ac 1200 dual band technology, giving you the fastest data transfer speeds possible, should your wireless router support them. Setup of the device is also quite simple, requiring no more than a couple of minutes to get it up and running. If you are looking for a great wireless extender that can help solve issues with slow wireless speeds and interference, this just might be the best option for you.

BT 1200 Wi-Fi Range Extender (AC1200) in the use

Additional Info

User Manual     Manufacturer


 

NETGEAR EX2700

Easy Fix for Big Issue

Everyone hates slow Internet. Usually, the key reason is simply a large distance from the router. When its signal is just not enough, invest your money in the quick solution named NETGEAR N300. The device has two small but powerful external antennas to provide Wi-Fi in a dead spot. It also has 1 port for Ethernet cable to wire up a PC or a TV to the Internet in case a device doesn't have a built-in wireless module.

The extender works perfectly right out-of-the-box. We still recommend checking out the official website for optional firmware updates. As for more advanced manual configuration, hook the device up to a computer using the very same Ethernet port and complete the initial setup. After that, you will always be able to readily access it from your phone or notebook via Wi-Fi.

Note, that N300 supports only 2.4 GHz frequency. It is slower than 5 GHz, of course, but also the most popular one and can attain up to 300 Mbps, which is actually quite enough to watch a streaming video or play video games without any noticeable lags.

Review of NETGEAR EX2700 Wi-Fi Range Extender (N300)

Cause and Consequence

Another reason of a slow connection is that you might have lots of Wi-Fi broadcasts in one place at once. This usually happens in a dense neighbourhood or high-rises with lots of company offices. Wi-Fi routers operate on a certain amount of channels and tend to use the best one available. But that doesn't mean that the router next door won't choose the same one as yours. When every other neighbour has a router and all the signals are working in a tight area, the cross-interference is bound to occur. If you have two Wi-Fi sources close to each other, they may also conflict a bit.

In this NETGEAR extender, you have an awesome but frequently forgotten option to manually switch between the broadcasting channels, although this might require some twist of the wrist. Try alternating them in the device's settings and look for the best results using a speed test or official Android app by NETGEAR. Finally, you can also point 2 antennas in several directions to enhance the signal where you need it the most.

As a conclusion, NETGEAR N300 Wi-Fi extender is a considerable choice when you have to quickly enhance your Wi-Fi signal for your tablet, phone or notebook. Give it a try, and see for yourself how handy and easy it is actually to use.

NETGEAR EX2700 Wi-Fi Range Extender (N300) in the use

Additional Info

User Manual     Manufacturer


VIDEO
Netgear N300 WiFi Range Extender
 

TP-LINK TL-WPA4220KIT

C-c-c-combo!

This model is a 2-in-1 device, a powerline adapter and an actual Wi-Fi extender. A powerline adapter is your best alternative to running Ethernet cables through the walls of your house (which is expensive and means actually running cables through walls). It is also a perfect middle ground between the quality and speed of the Ethernet cable plugged into your personal computer and the speed offered by a Wi-Fi router. It is also safer than Wi-Fi. However, we've made a small detour and this review here is of Wi-Fi extenders, so let's turn to that.

The best thing about this system is that it can be used as a wired and wireless connection. You can set up your desktop computer with a wired option and your sister's tablet wirelessly. The device is just a bit more than plug-and-play, setting it up takes little to no time at all, and it uses your standard outlet as a connection point to strengthen the signal.

There are two units in the set, you plug the adapter into the wall within the range of your Ethernet cable and the other in any room you have difficulties getting Internet in. Then you plug in the Ethernet cable and push the "Pair" button. That's it, you're good to go and use it, both with wires and wirelessly.

Review of TP-LINK TL-WPA4220KIT 2-Port Powerline Adapter / Range Extender / WiFi Extender (N300)

"Parent" Control over Wi-Fi

The Clone button is there to copy your router name and password so that you could use the Wi-Fi right away. But the extender also offers two ports for wired connection in the case you need higher speeds on your laptop at some moment.

The Wi-Fi boost with this universal extender works at 2.4GHz, the standard frequency. The wireless standards it operates with are the 802.11b/g/n. The 802.11ac would be nice, of course, but it is not exactly a must-have for most users.

TP-Link has an app that goes with this powerline adapter and extender system. The app allows you to control your wireless network as you see fit. That means limiting the access, for example, setting the time when Wi-Fi turns off automatically. This feature is loads handy when you have kids and they tend to hole up in their rooms with a wirelessly connected laptop when it's high time to sleep. With the TP-Link TL-WPA4220KIT, there is no need to manually turn off the router every evening, simply set the Wi-Fi extender to turn it off for the night according to schedule.

Drawing a final conclusion, we'd say we recommend this mini Wi-Fi boost system and powerline adapter for homes with multiple rooms and thick walls, and houses with several floors. The wired connection is yet to be outplayed by Wi-Fi, and with this model, you get a combination of both, so it's a win-win.

TP-LINK TL-WPA4220KIT 2-Port Powerline Adapter / Range Extender / WiFi Extender (N300) in the use

Additional Info

User Manual     Manufacturer


 

Linksys RE6400

Effortless Connection

Setting up the Linksys RE6400 Wi-Fi extender is a process unrivalled in its simplicity. Basically, the only thing you need to do is push the button on the device and walk around a bit to find the perfect spot for the extender. You'll know it by either the ember light changing into green or you can use a browser-based solution called Spot Finder Technology; the latter will simply show you, visually on the display of your smartphone, the distance between the extender and the router. Simple like that.

Speaking of routers, the model is compatible with all of them, of course, though it is hardly a surprise—nearly all extenders today work perfectly regardless of the router brand. If your router was given to you by your Internet service provider, that is not a problem as well, it will work just fine.

Connecting the Linksys Wi-Fi extender to the router is automatical, the model syncs with the Internet source (i.e. router) on its own right after you push the sync button. It is quite cool that this extender works with all existing wireless standards, including the newest 802.11ac dual band. The 802.11ac standard offers enhanced bandwidth and flexibility, it's a welcome feature in routers and now your extender can connect to that router as well.

Review of Linksys RE6400 Gigabit Wi-Fi Range Extender (AC1200)

Top Tech

This mini Wi-Fi boost device offers quite decent speeds at both 5GHz and 2.4GHz, as well as with LAN connection. While it is not the maximum 5GHz frequency can offer (which is 1300 Mbps), the 867 Mbps speed is way beyond the speed many household users even take notice of, there will be no delays during movie streaming or gaming. The 2.4GHz band does offer its maximum possible 300 Mbps speed, though. And LAN connection provides up to 1000 Mbps.

The Linksys Wi-Fi extender has two features of interest to anyone who uses Wi-Fi a lot. One of them would be the Crossband Technology, a technology that allows the bands to kind of "communicate", as in, the data is received by one band and is then transmitted to the other. This ensures the signal is faster, stronger, and more stable.

The other feature is the Beamforming. This one is, we believe, very cool. The Beamforming technology makes it possible to "focus" the Wi-Fi beam on a specific direction where your device is instead of dispersing the signal all over the place. Now your network is also highly efficient for all your family members.

The Linksys RE6400 can be called the best Wi-Fi extender for large homes with a selection of gadgets. It is nicely compact and exceptionally efficient.

Linksys RE6400 Gigabit Wi-Fi Range Extender (AC1200) in the use

Additional Info

    Manufacturer


 

What Is a Wi-Fi Extender?

Nowadays you can get a Wi-Fi signal almost everywhere in a city: malls, offices, cafeterias, hotels, shops, and even in public transport. Of course, the connection there may vary in quality from good to no signal at all. But even at your own house, you are not safe from accidentally getting into a dead spot where you cannot pick up even a single bar from your Wi-Fi router. Concrete walls, reinforced panels, weak output signal—these and many other things may become a nearly impenetrable barrier for Internet access.

Wi-Fi extenders are an excellent solution to cover your entire house with a stable signal. As it is evident from the name, they extend the existing Wi-Fi coverage by taking a signal from a router and retransferring it to the nearby area. In some cases, an extender simply boosts your router with additional antennas; in others, it creates a new network with a common router as an access point.

But right before we'll go further into details, you might want to take a look at our review of the best wireless routers with a thorough guide on how to get a Wi-Fi router best suited for your needs.

What Features to Compare

Designated Area

First of all, think about where you are going to use. Wi-Fi extenders sometimes are called repeaters and have a designated area of use. You can find models that are recommended but not limited to small houses or offices. The device amplifies a signal so that it could reach the farthest corners of your apartment, like when you have thick concrete walls in your building with a router's signal cutting through only one or two of them. For a cottage or an office, you might require a more powerful extender. In that case, we recommend taking a closer look at a Wi-Fi repeater that has adjustable external antennas with the gain power at 3 dBi or higher. If antennas are detachable, they can be replaced with more powerful or directional antennas in the future, but in most cases, you can simply point them in the required direction.

Bandwidth and Maximum Speed

You want to buy an extender to get better coverage and speed in the first place, right? If those numbers mean nothing to you, just try to buy an extender with the same maximum speed as your Wi-Fi router. Check them in a manual and in contract to your ISP. Search for numbers like Mbps or Mb/s. Below, we've compiled devices that range from 300 up to incredible 1300 Mbps, so that you could choose the one that would suit your ISP traffic plan and walls layout best.

Setup and Controls

Setup and controls are mostly done only once by connecting a device to your computer’s Ethernet port to set a Wi-Fi password. Normally, extenders work right away, but sometimes they have a CD with special software to program an extender. Basic options like resetting or turning the device on-off usually have designated buttons on the body. If you prefer gaming but your family loves watching online video or downloading large files, an ordinary extender might not be enough, as the streaming video and big files take a lot of Internet traffic and can cause lags. Therefore, you might want to get an advanced model with an option to prioritize connections.

Design

Most of the time, extenders are simply plugged into a socket and look like compact boxes with or without antennas. However, there are models that have an external power cord and can be placed on top of the shelf or just sit on your table. That way you will always have them within hand's reach.

Data Interfaces

There’re repeaters that have output LAN ports to connect them to other devices that have no Wi-Fi module, like a TV or desktop PC. Some extenders work with a power-line technology. It allows you to transfer Internet signal via the electrical wiring of your house. You will need 2 or more of such power-line adapters. After they've been plugged in the sockets, one of them will pick up a signal from the router via Ethernet cable or Wi-Fi, while the other one can receive it and retransfer further to other devices. Please note, that in most cases Internet signal can’t pass through electric transformers or power monitors.

You might also come across such specifications as supported network standards or access protection protocols, however, they are mostly interoperable only with many routers, so you might need this info only if you are going to install very specific routers in your office and need to protect confidential data. Still, common routers, extenders, and adapters are designed in accordance with Wi-Fi standards which oblige manufacturers to have the means for data protection. Set passwords, keep them to yourself and worry not - your information will be safe and sound.

Sources:

1. Simon Jary How to improve Wi-Fi in the home: Wi-Fi extenders vs Powerline adapters, PC Advisor. January 7, 2015.

2. Samara Lynn Wireless Witch: How to Place a Wireless Extender, PCMag. November 12, 2013.

3. Dan O'Halloran Boost Your WiFi with a Range Extender, Techlicious. January 12, 2015.

4. Dong Ngo Networking buying guide, CNET. September 14, 2016.

5. WiFi Boosters, Repeaters and ExtendersRepeaterStore.

6. WiFi Range Extender Best Setup GuideRouterGuide.

7. Simon Hill 7 Things to Consider When Buying a WiFi Range Extender, DealNews. June 9, 2016.

8. Securifi How to Choose the Right WiFi Extender Solution For Your Home, Securifi Blog. July 5, 2016.

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