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.

Mad Catz Announces TRITTON Katana HD 7.1 Wireless Headset

Mad Catz didn’t just have a new mouse to present us today, they’re also ready with a new headset under the TRITTON brand. The new headset is called the Katana and it is a HD 7.1 Wireless headset, but it isn’t an ordinary one. The Katana is the world’s first headset to draw its audio signal directly through HDMI to deliver eight channels of uncompressed sound for pure high-definition audio quality. With near-universal compatibility across gaming consoles, PCs and smart devices, the Katana HD features state-of-the-art DTS Headphone:X audio technology that faithfully recreates the spatially accurate immersive sound experience from your favorite game.

The TRITTON Katana is the new flagship headset and comes with a flagship pricetag too. It can currently be pre-ordered for $249 and is expected to ship during December 2015.

The headset itself features 50 mm drivers and crystal clear interference-free chat through an omnidirectional boom mic. The earpieces feature intuitive controls to control your audio, mute the mic, tweak the volume or change the EQ settings. The drivers have a frequency response from 20Hz to 20kHz and the microphone has a frequency response from 20Hz to 5kHz.

Along with the Katana HD 7.1 Wireless Headset and the omnidirectional boom mic, you also get the heart of the operation, the headset nase station with a 1 meter long USB to Micro USB Power Cable. The HDMI pass through is truly a great idea and one that makes the setup a lot easier. No need to worry about multiple audio devices any more.

A 1 meter HDMI cable is also included as you’ll need one extra when using pass through than without. Mad Catz also added a USB to Micro USB headset play-and-charge cable that is 1.5m long and a 3.5mm to 3.5mm chat cable for Xbox One users. No matter what platform you’re using, you’ll be able to use the TRITTON Katana HD Wireless Headset.

 

Specifications

  • Wireless Range: 33ft (10m)
  • HDMI with Full Pass-Through
  • Driver Size: 50mm
  • Headset Frequency Response: 20Hz – 20kHz
  • Microphone Frequency Response: 20Hz – 5kHz
  • Battery Type: Rechargeable Lithium-Ion
  • Battery Life: 20 Hours

The Katana headset is available in black and orange as well as white and orange version.

TP-Link TL-PA551KIT AV550+ Gigabit Powerline Kit With AC Passthrough Review

Introduction


In the grand scheme of networking vendors, TP-Link is not going to be the first brand amongst the big players that one would normally think of, but this is not to say that they are a small company. For a number of years, the Shenzhen based company has been making networking products ranging from un-managed switches, through to routers, wireless adaptors enterprise level managed switching gear. With the recent introduction of powerline technology, its only to be expected that powerline adaptors are going to be a part of their growing catalogue of products.

The 500Mbps kit that I’m going to take a look at today is not the first powerline kit to come out of the TP-Link production line, with a 200Mbps kit already available, but this kit sees faster speeds with a [up to] 500Mbps link speed and Gigabit Ethernet on each plug. Another feature that the TL-PA551 offers up is AC pass through which as simple as it sounds, allows the plug to still be used whilst the powerline does its work.

For those of you out there that follow my reviews, I hope you recall the time when I was very hesitant about powerline technology but with this view very much reversed, it seems I’ve grown a soft spot for it, as it can easily link different areas of a house together with ease and with no fuss – with some kits on offer that eliminate WiFi black spots or remove the need for wireless extenders altogether. This kit though with its AC pass through and Gigabit Ethernet ports is already looking to me to be a great option as it has the prospect to give a more than adequate throughput speed whilst still allowing the plug to be used for another electrical device.

TP-Link off this particular model in two SKUs, the first is a single plug which can extend an existing TP-Link powerline set-up even with 200Mbps models as they are full backwards compatible. The second variation and the one I have here to look at is a starter kit with two plugs and two cables. Also included is a set-up CD with the Powerline Utility, a user manual and a leaflet for some of TP-Link’s other products.