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.

ASUS Announces RP-AC68U Wireless Repeater

Even with the best of routers, you can run into trouble with insufficient coverage on your wireless networks and that is where repeaters come into play. Mostly we see small repeaters that plug directly into the wall socket and aren’t much bigger than a socket and switch put together, but ASUS’ latest repeater dubbed the RP-AC68U breaks with that norm.

The newly presented ASUS RP-AC68U is a dual-band wireless AC1900 repeater shaped like a pillar and with a list of advanced functions that make it stand out even more from the crowd. The stylish RP-AC68U features four internal high-performance antennas (3 transmit, 4 receive) and allows users to easily extend coverage of an existing 802.11ac Wi-Fi network with fast speeds of up to 1900Mbps.

The rear of the wireless repeater shows just how much this repeater goes out of the norm as it comes with five Gigabit Ethernet LAN ports built-in as well as a USB 3.0 port for connecting storage devices to your network. The USB port supports ASUS AiCloud and can act with simple NAS functionality and as your own personal cloud server with apps available for both iOS and Android devices. The RP-AC68U can also be used in Access Point mode to add ultra-fast Wi-Fi convenience to any existing wired network.

The illuminated red accents can be turned on or off by a convenient touch sensor incorporated in the ASUS logo on the front and the installation and setup is just as easy. The repeater features a simple one-touch setup with WPS and it has LED signal strength indicators for both bands. This allows you to easily find the optimal placement for the repeater.

Pricing and availability are yet to be announced. It surely won’t be the cheapest repeater on the block, but it also provides a lot more functionality than we’re used to from such devices. It is as close as it can be to a router without being one.

Netgear Introduces Quad-Mode Business-Class Wireless-AC Access Points

Netgear is launching two new quad-mode business-class 802.11ac wireless Access Points (AP) that support four different modes of management. The new ProSAFE WAC730 Business 3×3 Dual Band Wireless-AC Access Point and ProSAFE WAC720 Business 2×2 Dual Band Wireless-AC Access Point for small to mid-sized organizations can deliver excellent performance with up to 1.7Gbps for the WAC730 and 1.2Gbps for the WAC720.

The new ProSAFE Access Points can operate in standalone mode or use the new Netgear Ensemble Mode Management that enables centralized configuration and managements in groups of up to 10 APs without extra hardware, licenses, or fees. They are also ready to support controller management as well as cloud management through Netgear’s Business Central.

The NETGEAR ProSAFE WAC730 is a 3×3 business class dual-band 802.11ac wireless Access Point that can support an aggregated throughput of up to 1.7Gbps (450Mbps for 2.4GHz band and 1.3Gbps 802.11ac for 5GHz band) where the WAC720 is a 2×2 business class dual-band 802.11ac wireless Access Point with up to 1.2Gbps (300Mbps for 2.4GHz band and 867Mbps 802.11ac for 5GHz band). Other than that, the two units are basically the same.

Besides the new management abilities and faster wireless protocols, the new Access Points feature what you know from Netgear ACs. You get a Gigabit Ethernet port with IEEE 802.3af or 802.3at PoE support and another RJ45 port for management. You get five LEDs to see what’s going on and the APs naturally support all given WiFi protections, SSL, and VPN.

The shape and design is one that is familiar to anyone who has had a previous model, but it is now 40 percent smaller and now also includes support for Bonjour Gateway and Apple devices across multiple subnets. External antennas are not included in the package and neither is the power supply, so you’ll have to get them extra if you need them. The power supply won’t be needed in most setup scenarios as the Access Points support Power over Ethernet (802.3af).

Hardware in this class doesn’t come cheap, although that’s somewhat relative here. The MSRP for the ProSAFE WAC730 Business 3×3 Dual Band Wireless-AC Access Point is set to $689 and the ProSAFE WAC720 Business 2×2 Dual Band Wireless-AC Access Point will set you back $449. Both Access Points will become available this month sometime.

Asus EA-AC87 Media Bridge and Access Point Comes with 1734 Mbps Speeds

Asus has announced a new access point and media bridge, the EA-AC87, which is a dual-purpose wireless AC-1800 that uses a 4×4 MIMO antenna array. The company states that when it is paired with a 4×4 router, the EA-AC87 is able to deliver the world’s fastest 5GHz speeds of up to 1734 Mb/s.

The EA-AC87 also features the Asus AiRadar, a universal beamforming technology that helps the device ensure a reliable and fast connection over an area of 465 m² or 5000 ft. This means that the latest device has a 33% performance increase compared the previous Wi-Fi antenna generations that use 3×3 antennas.

In terms of connectivity, the EA-AC87 provides five Gigabit Ethernet ports, giving it the ability to connect to a wide range of devices. In addition to the latter, Asus states that future firmware updates will add support for multi-user MIMO, enhancing the product performance in multi-device environments.

In access point mode, the EA-AC87 is said to provide the ultimate 802.11ac standard extension, extending the capacity to handle more devices as well as extending the wireless coverage of the router it is coupled to. The EA-AC87 is the perfect solution for a single-band 2.4 GHz router, having it add the benefit for 5 GHz connectivity which adds ultra-fast speeds and less interference than in congested 2.4 GHz environments.

In media bridge mode, the EA-AC87 provides five LED indicators on the front panel which act as signal quality indicators. This provides real-time feedback upon the wireless signal quality and ensures that the user benefit from the optimum connection speeds and reliability.

Asus is making the EA-AC87 available in May 2015, having set a recommended price tag of €159.

Thank you Guru3D for providing us with this information

Netis WF2415 300Mbit Wireless N Gigabit Router Review

Introduction


Today I’m taking a look at the Netis WF2415 300Mbps Wireless N Gigabit Router. A simple approach, but one that looks like it offers anything you could want in a normal home.

The Netis WF2415 offers wireless N speeds up to 300Mbps as well as full Gigabit transfer speeds on all RJ45 ports, including the WAN port. It also has a WPS button for ease of use and connecting your wireless devices to your network.

Four Gigabit LAN ports should be enough at most times and it’s rare to see more. The WF2415 can act in a variety of modes such as AP, WDS, AP+WDS, Client and Repeater; this makes it pretty much universally usable. The mounting system allows you to hang the router in any direction. A simple but clever approach and one that works each time. The two 5dBi high gain antennas are fixed and can’t be removed or replaced – at least not easily.

Inside the router, we find a Realtek RTL8198 SoC processor specifically designed for use with routing as well as the Realtek RTL8192CE highly integrated single-chip MIMO (Multiple In, Multiple Out) Wireless LAN (WLAN) solution.

While nothing of this blows our mind, it sounds like a solid choice in a basic router – one that could easily satisfy the needs of most people.

 

TRENDnet Announced AC750 Wireless Travel Router

The days where one only used a single device while on the go are long gone, even though every device keeps getting smarter and more functions. Bringing along a normal router to connect all these devices with each other isn’t always an option either, especially due to the different plug layout and voltages used around the world. That is until now.

TRENDnet has announced their AC750 (TEW-817DTR) Wireless Travel Router, the first portable AC router with interchangeable power plugs for use all around the world. The device uses the same method as known from some phone chargers and power bricks, where you just slide out the power connector and add the one suited for your current location.

“With more and more professionals traveling with a mixture of both WiFi N and newer WiFi AC devices, the TEW-817DTR does a great job of keeping them all connected,” said Sonny Su, technology director of TRENDnet.

It can deliver concurrent 433 Mbps WiFi AC and 300 Mbps WiFi N bands that in return allows to quickly convert a single wired or wireless internet connection into a shared WiFi network for all Wireless AC and N devices. It supports VPN pass-through (IPSec, PPTP, and L2TP) as well as IPv6, comes with pre-encrypted WiFi and supports Wireless ISP, Access Point, and Repeater modes.

Availability is set for May 2015 and the MSRP is set to $89.99, and the unit is backed by a 3-year warranty.

Thanks to TRENDnet for providing us with this information

Wireless AC1750 Dual-Band PoE Access Point Announced By D-Link

D-Link has announced a new addition to its range of Wireless AC products, the Wireless AC1750 Simultaneous Dual-Band PoE Access Point bearing the model name DAP-2695, which has its key features set on higher traffic levels and greater performance expectations.

The DAP-2695 provides enhanced dual-band performance to deliver a more stable, secure and faster wireless connection, while having the option to configure it to work in a number of modes for added deployment options.

The flagship Wireless AC1750 Simultaneous Dual-Band PoE Access Point allows network administrators to deploy a highly manageable and extremely robust simultaneous dual-band wireless network. All six antennas are detachable and can provide optimal wireless coverage with maximum speeds of up to 450 Mbps over the 2.4 GHz band and 1300 Mbps over the 5 GHz band.

It can also be used in multiple operation modes, such as an access point, wireless distribution system (WDS) with access point, WDS/bridge or as a wireless client with WDS support. Network administrators are able to set up multiple units throughout a facility and configure them to bridge with one another while also providing network access to individual clients. As such the Wireless AC1750 Simultaneous Dual-Band PoE Access Point can be used to join networks between different buildings without the need to lay additional wiring.

The AC1750 also has advanced features embedded, such as load balancing when multiple units are deployed and it can be connected and powered with a single Ethernet cable due to its Power over Ethernet (PoE) support. Administrators have the ability to virtually pool these devices, using the D-Link AP Manager II or D-View SNMP management module to configure, check and maintain multiple access points from a single location.

D-Link’s Wireless AC1750 Simultaneous Dual-Band PoE Access Point is currently available for purchase at a price range of around £237.

General Specifications:

  • High-performance Connectivity
  • IEEE 802.11ac wireless1
  • Up to 1300+450 Mbps1
  • Gigabit LAN port
  • Made for Business-class Environments
  • Simultaneous dual-band connectivity for increased network capacity
  • Band steering
  • Console port for debugging
  • Rugged metal housing
  • Plenum-rated chassis
  • Ideal for indoor deployment2
  • Traffic control/QoS
  • Internal RADIUS server
  • Web redirection
  • Trusted Security Features
  • WPA/WPA2 – Enterprise/Personal
  • WPA2 – PSK/AES over WDS
  • MAC address filtering
  • Network Access Protection (NAP)
  • ARP spoofing prevention
  • WLAN partition
  • Convenient Installation
  • Supports 802.3at PoE+ Power over Ethernet
  • Wall mounting brackets included

Thank you TechPowerUp for providing us with this information
Images courtesy of dlinkmea

iPad Air and iPad mini with Retina Display LTE Hotspot Battery Life Benchmark

As we all consider battery life a key feature, it might be worth taking a look on how well the new iPads perform while using the LTE Hotspot feature. The guys at Anandtech performed such a benchmark using a 100KB/s constant download from a laptop tethered over WiFi to the new iPad mini with Retina Display and respectively the iPad Air.

During the test, the iPad mini’s display was off and no background syncing was taking place for a more accurate result. Both access points are more or less identical to between both iPads, with the Retina mini using a PoP implementation of Apple’s A7 and Qualcomm’s MDM9615M modem, having the big difference noticeable in battery capacity. The iPad mini has a 23.8Wh battery compared to the iPad Air’s 32.5Wh. The results are as following:

Taking a look at the iPad mini first, it lasted roughly 18.77 hours on a single charge, compared to the 24.08 hours scored by the iPad Air. But the gap between the two is mainly due to battery capacity, therefore the best option would be the iPad Air. However, if you prefer more portability, then the iPad mini would be the more suitable candidate.

Thank you Anandtech for providing us with this information
Image courtesy of Anandtech

High Performance Wireless PoE Access Point Released By TRENDnet

TRENDnet today announced the availability of the N600 Dual Band PoE Access Point, model TEW-753DAP, a business class PoE access point with a lot of features and dual band 300 Mbps Wireless N technology.

The TEW-753DAP has a white smoke detector shaped which allows it to blends into most environments and also offers the ability to turn off flashing LEDs to further reduce product visibility. A variety of installation scenarios are supported with Access Point, WDS Access Point, WDS Bridge, and Repeater modes.

Power over Ethernet (PoE) is also one of the key features of the access point, making it easy to install and reducing power consumption. It also gives the user the ability to choose between the two 300 megabit per second Wireless N bands. A steady 2.4 GHz band could be a suitable candidate for everyday work and activities, but if you also want the wireless to be reliable, a less congested 5 GHz band would be advisable. Both bands are supplied by a Gigabit Ethernet connection to maintain a high performance wireless connection.

The advanced features included in the TEW-753DAP Access Point are as following:

  • IPv6 support
  • A handy integrated AP scan feature
  • The ability to create up to 16 SSIDs
  • Eight system logs for network troubleshooting
  • Spanning Tree and SNMP support
  • Traffic shaping by allocating bandwidth to specific SSIDs

Thank you SPi World News for providing us with this information
Image courtesy of TRENDnet