ASUS RP-AC56 Dual-Band Wireless AC1200 Range Extender Review

Introduction


When you invest in a wireless network repeater in order to increase your range and cover dead spots in your home, you can either go for a run-of-the-mill unit that provides you with the basic functionality or you can go all out and get a device like ASUS’ RP-AC56 wireless dual-band AC1200 range extender and access point. The ASUS RP-AC56 is anything but ordinary and today I’ll take a closer look at everything this little device has to offer.

The ASUS RP-AC56 can extend your existing 802.11ac dual-band Wi-Fi network with speeds up to 1167 Mbps and thanks to its two external antennas it will have a great ability to enhance Wi-Fi signal coverage and boost your Wi-Fi everywhere. But it does a lot more than that, it also comes with a Gigabit Ethernet LAN port for even more connectivity as well as a 3.5mm audio jack for music streaming.

The dual-band repeater supports both the legacy 2.4GHz band and the newer 5GHz band for AC1200 speeds. The two external antennas support MIMO for the best connection even when multiple devices use it at the same time. With speeds up to 867 Mbps on the 5GHz band you can get close to what a wire connection has to offer, at least with the proper signal strength and isn’t that just the reason that we want a device such as the RP-AC56.

ASUS made sure that the setup is as easy as it can be, all it takes is a push of a button thanks the easy WPS setup. Hit the button on your router and then on the repeater, wait for a little bit, and the connection will be established. And that really is all you need to do, but you can do more. The LEDs on the front don’t just show which network band is being used, they also show the signal strength in three steps (Red, Yellow, Green) which in return allows you to find the perfect position for maximum coverage.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uf-0m-BMyo0

As previously mentioned, the RP-AS56 comes with a convenient Gigabit Ethernet LAN port built-in and the function of it depends on the usage of the RP-AC56. The flexibly designed device can work as a normal repeater, but it can also work as a wireless access point or as a media bridge. In access point mode it can be connected to any wired network and create a personal Wi-Fi hotspot. In media bridge mode it can be connected to any Ethernet-compatible device to give it Wi-Fi capability where it didn’t before.

The LAN port can also be used for easy access to the web-based configuration menu without the need for any driver disc or application, but it isn’t something that is needed. You can naturally also set it up wirelessly from devices such as your tablet or smartphone.

You can also connect speakers directly to the RP-AC56 wireless repeater and stream your favorite music direct from any mobile device that has the ASUS AiPlayer app installed. It is compatible with a wide range of multimedia formats and delivers a smooth and effortless streaming experience. The AiPlayer app is available from the App Store and Google Play and it also works for streaming without extra software when used from a Mac and iOS device.

Additionally, the RP-AC56 also supports ASUS’ ExpressWay feature that uses the dual-band capabilities to create an efficient connection with improved reliability. In normal mode, the repeater uses the two bands simultaneously for connecting to devices for the widest compatibility. ExpressWay can dedicate one band for connecting to the router and the other band for connecting to the device as long as one of them supports the 5GHz band. It also features the hassle-free Roaming Assist technology. With this enabled, you never have to switch connections manually between RP-AC56 and your ASUS router as you move around the home. Your device will connect automatically to the strongest Wi-Fi signal whether it’s from the router or the repeater.

Features

  • Extend your existing 802.11ac dual-band Wi-Fi network with speeds up to 1167 Mbps.
  • Two external antennas enhance Wi-Fi signal coverage and boost your Wi-Fi everywhere.
  • Quick and secure setup with just a press of the WPS button.
  • Smart LED signal indicator helps you find the best location for optimum Wi-Fi performance.
  • Rotating mains plug for flexible positioning in any power socket. (Not in all regions)
  • ASUS AiPlayer app for streaming music, with multi-protocol support.
  • ASUS ExpressWay uses full-speed device connections to boost performance.
  • Roaming Assist helps you to get a stable connection everywhere in the home or office.

Packaging and Accessories

The ASUS RP-AC56 comes in a great looking retail box that shows how the device looks on the front where it also shows the main features and highlights the Android and iOS support.

The rear of the box explains what the device does and how you can utilize it. It also showcases the AiPlayer for wireless streaming and more details on the features. Overall it’s a great box where you shouldn’t be left with any questions as to what the device you’re holding in your hands can do.

Inside the box, we find a quick start guide and ASUS VIP Member Warranty Notice in multiple languages as well as a 3.5mm audio cable to connect the repeater to an amplifier or speaker set.

WatchGuard Firebox T30 And T50 UTM Now Available

We’ve seen a lot of attacks in the recent months where both online technology resellers as well as universities and even the DNS Root Servers being attacked. In such a time you’ll want the best possible protection for your connected devices and Wick Hill just announced the shipping of their WatchGuard T30 and T50 Firebox appliances for enterprise-strength unified threat management (UTM). The Firebox T30 and T50 are aimed at small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and distributed enterprises and are essential a hardware firewall and VPN connection.

Faster internet connections make decentralized organizations more flexible, but connecting all the branches with each other in a secure fashion can be a challenge, and that is where the Firebox comes into play. It is easy to deploy and can be preconfigured before deployment. WatchGuard’s T-series of tabletop UTM are ideal for remote branches where there isn’t a dedicated server room. They are small and have versatile placement options away and out of sight. The are also easily expandable with Wi-Fi access points of security cameras thanks to the built-in POE port.

Both the T30 and T50 feature AC1200 wireless network abilities with UTM security speeds up to 165 Mbps. The Advanced Malware Detection can catch malware that signature-only AV solutions miss. Next-generation sandboxing in the cloud with full system emulation (CPU and memory) provides visibility into every instruction that malware executes and not just the operating system calls That exposes evasive behavior that other sandbox solutions might not see. The WatchGuard series also features a centralised real-time view into all network activity with the power to take immediate action against harmful sites and users. The UTM also features a crypto co-processing unit for SHA-2.

The WatchGuard Firebox T30 starts around €620 and the T50 starts out around €1000, both prices without VAT.

Linksys RE6700 AC1200 Amplify Wi-Fi Range Extender Review

Introduction


Wireless networks are great, that is as long as you are close enough to your router to get a signal strength you like. If you router shouldn’t be strong enough to reach the furthest parts of your home or you just need a stronger signal, then you might want to invest in a range extender. Today I’m taking a closer look at the Linksys RE6700 AC1200 Amplify Dual-Band Wi-Fi Range Extender, or just Linksys RE6700 for short.

I’ve tested a few range extenders lately, but most of them were 2.4GHz mode only. That isn’t ideal for today’s devices that usually come with dual-band features and high-speed 5GHz network. The Linksys RE6700 is a dual-band device that can provide up to 300 Mbit/s on the 2.4GHz band and up to 867Mbit/s on the 5GHz band, making up the AC1200 rating. The RE6700 features a range extension all the way up to 1000 square meters, an area that should be more than enough for most homes.

One of the great thing with wireless range extenders is that they are compatible with pretty much any hardware that you already have. They simply hook themselves up on your existing network, with minor configurations, and extend the coverage and signal strength of your existing network. It couldn’t be simpler to get a better wireless network.

Linksys included the amazing Spot Finder technology in the RE6700 that allows you to find the perfect location for the range extender with ease. The range extender has a spot finder meter built into its web interface where you can use it from your PC or mobile devices. Turn the RE67000 on and find the perfect location for your new range extender in just 3 simple steps.

A downside to many wireless network range extenders is that they take up a power outlet that you otherwise might need. Linksys made sure that this won’t be an issue on the RE6700. The added power outlet pass-through for prevents the worry about blocked power outlets in your home that you otherwise need for other devices.

The RE6700 also features beamforming technology that makes sure that you have the best signal to connected devices simply by strengthening the signal in the direction of connected devices. The crossband technology allows for the simultaneous use of both bands rather than relying on one radio band to do all the work. This allows information to be obtained on one band and transmitted on the other, resulting in reduced dropped data packets, faster media transfer speeds, and a stronger, more consistent signal throughout your home.

You might think that we are done with the features now, after all, this is just a range extender. But there is more to show on the RE6700. Linksys also included a 3.5mm audio jack that allows you to connect speakers directly to the range extender and stream music wirelessly from your iOS or Android smartphone, tablet, or laptop. Continuing, Linksys also added a Gigabit Ethernet port to the range extender that allows you to connect devices that don’t have their own wireless adapter.

Linksys added both a power button and a WPS button to the RE6700. The power button is a nice touch, allowing you to turn the extender function off without having to unplug it. The WPS button allows for easy connection setup between the range extender and your router. A click on the WPS button on each device and the two will be automatically paired. There is also a tiny hole for the reset button in case you need to reset the configuration.

Feature Highlights

  • Increase your current router’s Wi-Fi range to up to 10,000 square feet
  • Enjoy Wi-Fi speeds up to AC1200Mbps (N300 + AC867)
  • Spot Finder Technology makes optimal placement easy
  • An integrated power outlet allows you to maintain availability of the wall plug
  • Beamforming and Crossband technologies focus and strengthen signals to help reduce dead zones
  • Stream music wirelessly throughout your home with Wi-Fi audio
  • Works with virtually any router

Packaging and Accessories

Linksys packed the Amplify AC1200 Wi-Fi range extender in a colourful box that displays all the main featuers right on the front.

The rear explains the technology behind it a little more while also explaining a little about the built-in streaming feature.

The added features such as audio jack and Gigabit Ethernet port are also displayed on the box itself.

Inside we find the range extender itself, a quick start guide, and a regulatory information leaflet.

Linksys Announced Two New Wi-Fi Range Extenders

Linksys announced two new additions to its line-up of Linksys Wi-Fi Range Extenders, the Linksys AC1200 BOOST EX (RE6400) and Linksys AC750 BOOST (RE6300). Both new range extenders help boost the Wi-Fi signal bars in areas of your home where they are so weak that mobile devices have trouble connecting to the Internet and at the same time it improves the coverage everywhere else.

Wi-Fi signals are easily affected by a lot of things, both the physical objects they have to pass as well as interference from other electrical devices, so Wi-Fi range extenders can be a great thing in many homes and make your online experience a lot more pleasant. Both range extenders come equipped with Cross-Band technology and can provide a coverage of up to 7,500 square feet (RE6400) or up to 6,500 square feet (RE6300). You can also a wired device like a gaming console, Blu-Ray player, smart TV, or streaming player to your Wi-Fi network via the Gigabit Ethernet port.

Key Features:

  • Dual-Band Wireless-AC technology featuring wireless AC1200 and AC750 versions
  • Works with any router or gateway including routers supplied by service provider
  • Push Button Connect feature simply syncs range extender to a home router
  • Easy setup from mobile devices with exclusive Spot Finder Technology for optimal placement
  • Cross-Band Technology maximises the simultaneous use of both bands for a faster and stronger signal
  • Beamforming Technology concentrates the signal and focuses it directly to connected devices for optimal performance
  • Gigabit Ethernet Port to connect additional devices for a hard wired connection
  • Two external antennas for enhanced performance and throughput

The two new range extenders compliment Linksys already existing lineup very well and place themselves in the middle. They are also cost effective devices as they’ll only set you back £49.99 and £59.99 respectively and will be available for purchase in late November.

Linksys Introduced RE6700 WLAN Range Extender With Passthrough

Wireless networks are a really convenient invention, that is if they cover the area where you want to use them. Many routers have a very limited range and that is where range extenders come into play.

Linksys has just released a new one of just them, the AC1200 Amplify Wi-Fi Range Extender (RE6700) with power outlet pass-through. The pass-through is a really nice feature as the Linksys range extender won’t take away a power outlet that you might need for other things.

The RE6700 features both dual-band AC1200 connections and beam forming technology and in combination can extend your coverage area with as much as 10,000 square feet (about 920 square meters).

Linksys also helps you to find the optimal place in your home to place the device. They develæoped the Spot Finder that allows you to visually see the best placement spot for the range extender in your home. Just grab your smartphone, tablet or laptop and follow a few prompts to find your optimal location.

You even get a 3.5mm audio jack to stream music wireless and a Gigabit Ethernet port to connect wired devices to your network.

Features

  • Simultaneous Dual-Band Wireless AC1200 (N300 + AC 867 Mbps)
  • Spot Finder Technology – for optimal placement and performance
  • Integrated power outlet – Flexible plug-in placement maintains use of existing wall outlet
  • External Antenna for better Wi-Fi coverage and performance
  • Auto Cross Band Technology allows for the simultaneous use of both wireless bands for providing high speed data transfer to help with uninterrupted music/video streaming and gaming
  • Gigabit Port for connecting a single wired device or plug in a Gigabit switch for connecting multiple wired devices to a wireless network
  • 3.5mm audio jack allows users to connect speakers to the range extender to stream music wirelessly from your
  • iOS or Android smartphone, tablet, or laptop
  • Works with any router or gateway including routers supplied by service provider

The RE6700 is available now at major retail and online resellers as well as the Linksys store for an MSRP of $119.99.