These are the best WiFi extenders for enhanced WiFi coverage throughout your home.
If you are looking for the best WiFi solution to offer maximum coverage throughout your home, the size notwithstanding, you might want to look out for the best WiFi extenders on the market.
With busy networks and the need for internet coverage in larger spaces, a WiFi extender comes in handy in making sure that you don’t have to worry about dead zones or poor connectivity in some areas. The best WiFi extenders are designed to take on your original network, boosting the range beyond its original boundaries. They offer adequate coverage where there is the deterioration of the base networks, which means that if you have been struggling with a slow internet connection or interruptions, or if you are just trying to make sure that the power of your existing router is enhanced, then the range extender would be an excellent option for you.
Unfortunately, knowing that a WiFi extender is what you need for the best connectivity is not everything, especially because you need to evaluate the features of the extender to make sure that the device offers everything you need for the best performance.
In this review, we’ll take a look at some of the best WiFi extenders on the market and also the things you need to keep in mind in your search for the best WiFi extender.
Best WiFi Extenders in 2020 – Comparison Table
Best WiFi Extenders in 2020
NETGEAR WiFi Mesh Range Extender EX7300
Best Overall Mesh WiFi Extender
NETGEAR EX6200 AC1200 Wireless WiFi Range Extender –
Great Value for Money
TP-Link RE650 AC2600 WiFi Range Extender
Best Performance Range Extender
Netgear Nighthawk X6S EX8000 Tri-band WiFi Extender
Best Triband WiFi Extender
Linksys RE7000 WiFi Range Extender
Low-Profile Range Extender
Reviews of the Best WiFi Extenders in 2020
NETGEAR WiFi Mesh Range Extender EX7300 – Best Overall Mesh WiFi Extender
- EXTENDED WIRELESS COVERAGE: Adds WiFi range coverage up to 2000 square feet, and connects up to 35...
- SEAMLESS SMART ROAMING: Uses your existing network SSID name so you never get disconnected as you move...
This WiFi mesh extender is one of the best mesh range extenders on the market today, and it might be a good option for you if you need a range boost for your wireless network of up to 2000sq ft.
It boasts to offer support for as many as 35 additional devices, and it will work well with your existing router, especially if it’s a dual-band router running on the AC2200 wireless protocol. It’s also called a wireless signal repeater or a signal booster. It offers top speeds of up to 2200Mbps, and you get to enjoy the best performance from this mesh extender thanks to the dual-band setup, as well as the patented FastLane technology that allows for the use of this mesh extender in demanding activities like HD streaming, as well as heavy online gaming.
This mesh extender is also one of the best options for you as it features a smart roaming mesh system. It boasts universal compatibility with all other wireless routers, gateways, and modems, with the Ethernet port allowing for high-performance wired connections. For security, it features support for WPA, WPA2, and WEP protocols’.
- Great range up to 2200sq.ft
- Fast internet access up to 2200Mbps
- Universal device compatibility
- One Gigabit Ethernet port for wired connections at high speeds
- Secure setups
- Smart roaming from Mesh technology
- Easy setup, and a large device capable of at least 35 devices
- The warranty plan could be better
- Firmware issues
NETGEAR EX6200 AC1200 Wireless WiFi Range Extender – Great Value for Money
- Range extenders eliminate dead zones and improves WiFi coverage in your home
- NETGEAR extenders are easy to set up with the push of a button or mobile responsive User Interface
Next on our list is this Netgear EX6200 WiFi range extender, and you might like it because it is not only affordable but also offers excellent range coverage expansion for a larger home.
It is a desktop range extender with two removable external antennas for boosted signal range. It is a high-performance 802.11ac dual-band range extender, and it’s one of the best options on the market thanks to the 4 gigabit Ethernet ports that allow for wired connections for your digital devices, including your gaming console. It also features one USB 3.0 port for file transfers and a connection to printers and storage devices. This range extender gives a network performance boost also because it offers high speeds of up to 1200Mbps.
- Flexible setup in the vertical or the horizontal orientation
- Great performance at high speeds
- 4 Gigabit Ethernet ports and 1 USB 3.0 port
- Extended range up to 83ft
- No dedicated backhaul channel for communication between the router and the satellite unit
TP-Link RE650 AC2600 WiFi Range Extender – Best Performance Range Extender
- Extend the range of your Wi Fi with the dual band RE650, compatible with any type of Router / Gateway /...
- Quad Antenna design for ultimate coverage for all areas of your home
Even with only one Gigabit Ethernet port, this TP-Link range extender is one of the best range extenders on the market today. It delivers excellent wireless speeds to a range of up to 75ft, and it boasts a convenient plug-in design that enhances its performance in the spaces where it is needed the most.
The performance of this range extender is enhanced by the dual-band setup and its 802.11ac protocol, which it’s based on. There are also 4 external antennas which ensure that the WiFi signals reach as far as possible. You will enjoy speeds of up to 2600Mbps from this dual-band WiFi extender.
- Excellent range
- Easy installation and use
- Comes with an app for management from your tablet or smartphone
- Excellent performance
- The user interface works great
- 4 External antenna
- Bulky and blocks adjacent wall outlets
- Only one Gigabit Ethernet port
Netgear Nighthawk X6S EX8000 Tri-band WiFi Extender – Best Triband WiFi Extender
- Extended wireless coverage: Adds Wi-Fi range coverage up to 2500 square feet, and connects up to 50...
- Seamless smart roaming: Uses your existing network SSID name so you never get disconnected as you move...
Netgear is a leading brand when it comes to networking devices, and this mesh range extender is the other powerful range extender from the brand.
This range extender boasts an excellent level of performance, thanks to its premium design and features, including the 6 internal antennas that project the wireless signal far and wide. It offers a very high data transfer rate of 3000Mbp, via the tri-band radio frequency, and it will offer the best performance when paired with an AC3000 triband router/ mesh networking system. The performance and top speeds also come about from the four Gigabit Ethernet ports, which ensure fast-wired connections, the USB 2.0 port for file transfers, and the mesh design of this extender that will create a blanket WiFi coverage throughout your home.
You might also like this extender because it allows you to create a bigger wireless network by throwing in additional units of the extender. It’s a desktop range extender, and you can look forward to the best performance throughout, also because it integrates easily with your existing system. You get to enjoy an extended coverage range of up to 2500sq.ft, and you may also like this range extender because of its support for as many as 50 devices.
It further allows seamless roaming, and the FastLaneNetgear technology allows for the use of the extender in online gaming and 4K HD streaming.
- Excellent range, speed, and overall performance
- 4 Gigabit Ethernet ports for wired connections
- 6 internal antennas
- Software works great
- Powerful wireless signals for HD streaming and online gaming
- Smart roaming
- It’s huge and bulky
Linksys RE7000 WiFi Range Extender – Low-Profile Range Extender
- Eliminates Wi-Fi dead zones and boost Next Gen AC Wi-Fi in and around your home
- Works with all Wi-Fi routers and multi user MIMO Routers; Wireless MAC filtering
With one Gigabit Ethernet port and 4 external antennas, this range extender might be the best option for you if you have been searching for a low-profile range extender. It boasts a reliable dual-band setup, and it promises high speeds of up to 1900Mbps.
Thanks to its low-profile design, this range extender will not block the other power outlets, and it is also not one of those garish tech devices. And despite the external antennas, its design is not obtrusive.
Its performance is enhanced by the incorporation of the MU-MIMO technology, which ensures the best performance across multiple devices.
- Simple, low-profile design
- Dual-band setup
- High-speed operation
- Multi-stream connectivity, thanks to MU-MIMO technology
- Great range
- Runs hot
- The performance could be better.
Buying Guide of the Best WiFi Extenders in 2020
There are many types of range extenders on the market today, and no two range extenders are created the same. Besides making the range extenders different, their differences are the reason why you need to review the features of the range finders you are looking for before buying them. To guide your search for the best WiFi extenders, here are some of the features that you need to look out for.
Dual bands and Wireless Protocols
One of the things you need to look out for in a wireless range extender is the radio band settings. For the most part, you need to make sure that the number of radio bands and the wireless protocols that the range extender runs on is similar to the features of your existing router. So, if you are considering a dual-band extender, you’ll need a dual-band router. The wireless protocol of the extender is also important, and it should match your router for you to enjoy the best performance. Opt for an 802.11ac range extender if you have an 802.11ac router and vice versa.
And in as much as you wouldn’t always pay as much attention to your router’s WiFi standard, it definitely matters to look at the extender’s wireless standards. You should, however, avoid buying an extender running on a more advanced wireless standard, because in as much as the advanced setup means better performance, theoretically, the incompatibility in the wireless standards will leave you with poor performance.
Regarding the radio bands and the wireless protocols, you also need to consider the technological features incorporated into the range extender, for example, MU-MIMO or Multi-user, Multiple Input, Multiple Output for simultaneous multi-device data streaming. If your router features this function, it would be a good idea to get an extender that also supports this technology. Both units having this technology means that the extender has an enhanced level of performance and the capacity to send more data streams to all the compatible clients.
Design of the router – Plug-in or Desktop Range Extender?
There are two main types of range extenders, the plug-in, and the desktop range extenders. The desktop range extenders are designed to look more or less like your wireless router, and they feature adjustable external antennas, as well as multiple LAN or Ethernet ports, and also USB ports for easy attachments for peripheral devices, for example, printers or storage drives. These desktop range extenders are often big and bulky, and although this would mean that they take up much space, the big size means that the extenders are fitted with additional features that improve the device’s performance.
On the other hand, you have the plug-in range extenders, which are not only smaller and often more affordable, but also they boast a non-obtrusive profile. But they are imperfect, as expected of any network device, and they lack as many ports as the desktop extenders, with most of these range extenders featuring one LAN port, and in most cases, they don’t have options for USB connectivity. Thanks to their design, these range extenders aren’t as versatile, meaning that when you choose the plug-in range extender, you will be making a compromise of affordability for versatile performance. The next best alternative for you would be to buy the plug-in extender model that boasts a pass-through outlet. The plug-in extenders also feature internal antennas rather than external antennas (for most options), meaning that the range of these extenders might not be as far as what you’d get from the desktop range extenders.
The other consideration to keep in mind is the setup and the use of the WiFi extender. Essentially, the setting up of the new range extenders on the market is pretty much straightforward, and you don’t need technical expertise to be able to set up and use the extenders.
To ensure that you have extenders with the easiest setups, you might want to look out for features such as support for the WPS setup. WPS or WiFi Protected Setup is the simplest network setup option as it allows you to set up your devices by pressing a couple of buttons, naming the new extended network, and setting the password. Thanks to this easy setup, we recommend buying a WiFi range extender with a WPS setting.
Besides WPS, you also need to look out for additional features like LED indicators showing the status of the connection and whether the extender is placed correctly.
Advanced features to look out for include access scheduling, media server capabilities, and guest networking.
The other vital consideration to keep in mind is the placement of the range extender. You need to make sure that the WiFi extender is optimally placed for you to enjoy the enhanced performance of the device. Placement is important because the extender makes use of radio waves to send out signals and data, back and forth from your network, which means that you should place the extender closer to the router for it to grab stronger signals and for the signal re-broadcast. But you also need to make sure that the range extender is far enough for the signals to be broadcast throughout the space.
Considering an upgrade
While investing is a wireless range extender might be the best strategy for you when it comes to meeting your home internet needs, the extender will not help as much if your biggest issue is poor internet access from the router itself. If your wireless router is unable to meet your fast internet needs and the best possible level of coverage, it would be a good idea to upgrade your existing wireless router system, opting instead for a new router, preferably a mesh router, especially if you don’t want to deal with dead zones and poor coverage. The mesh system will create a blanket network coverage for the entire space, hence excellent coverage.
Mesh routers as WiFi range extenders
Investing in a mesh-based WiFi system might be the best option for you if you are thinking of an upgrade. The mesh system is designed so that it offers a blanket network coverage over the entire space, hence better performance of the mesh systems compared to the traditional routers. The mesh system will feature one primary router and satellite units that form a single wireless network. You can roam easily throughout the house without worrying about dead zones, and you might also like the mesh system because of the strong WiFi signals throughout.
Which is the best place for me to install my WiFi range extender?
One of the things that stands out when it comes to the setup and installation of the range extenders is the placement of the range extender, and you need to be extra careful when choosing where to place the range extender because it will affect the coverage and the performance of the device.
Generally, the best place for you to install your range extender is somewhere close to the router but also close enough for you to enjoy good coverage. For the best results, you must avoid obstacles, and also place the extender far from your microwave ovens, refrigerators, baby monitors, or anything else that would cause signal interference.
Can you use an app to set up and manage your extender’s placement?
Yes. And the good news is that most of the range extenders on the market today feature app management tools for setup and network management.
Must I reconfigure my range extender in case of relocation?
No. The settings on the range extender have been set up so that you can restart the device normally, without deleting the preset settings, hence no need to reconfigure it. However, you will be forced to reconfigure the range extender when you upgrade or change the router’s settings.
A good WiFi range extender is the difference between slow, spotty, or non-existent internet coverage in some parts of your home and excellent coverage. The range extenders reviewed above are some of the best options, and they promise excellent performance.