If your router lacks the signal strength needed to bring Wi-Fi to the far corners of the building, give your wireless network a boost with the TP-Link RE450 AC1750 Wi-Fi Range Extender.
This dual-band extender plugs into any wall outlet and delivers solid throughput speeds and good signal range. Even though it's bulky and lacks a pass-through outlet, its performance particularly at long distances, makes it our Editors' Choice for wireless range extenders.
TP-Link RE450 AC1750 Wi-Fi Range Extender is an 802.11ac range extender with a maximum data rate of 450Mbps on the 2.4GHz band and 1,300Mbps on the 5GHz band.
With two fold-out antennas on either side and one that pulls out of the top of the device, the glossy white and gray device looks like something from a Star Trek episode. Measuring 6.4 by 3 by 1.2 inches (HWD), it is about the size and shape of a 6-inch smartphone and at least twice as thick.
Its bulky frame blocks access to the second outlet in a two-outlet receptacle.
The front of TP-Link RE450 AC1750 Wi-Fi Range Extender sports a large Range Extender (RE)/Wi-Fi Protected Setup (WPS) button with an LED light ring around its outer edge.
The ring is blue when the extender has a good connection to the router, and red when it is far away.
It blinks blue while a WPS connection is in progress, and is off when there is no active connection. Below the button are 2.4GHz- and 5GHz-band status indicators and a Power indicator.
The left side holds Power and reset buttons and a button that turns off the LED lights. Over on the right side is a single gigabit LAN port, and there's a two-pronged plug at the rear.
TP-Link RE450 AC1750 Wi-Fi Range Extender Web-based management console lets you view your network status and create SSIDs for both bands. You can also select a security protocol (WEP, WPA, or WPA2) and assign passwords for each band.
Other settings include access controls with white list and black list modes that limit which devices can use the extended network, a DHCP option with a DHCP client list, a system log, and a firmware upgrade option.
TP-Link RE450 AC1750 Wi-Fi Range Extender is an excellent choice if you're looking to extend the reach of your wireless network. It offers solid close-proximity throughput, and performed wonderfully on our range tests.
Moreover, it's a cinch to install. Granted, it takes up two outlets and doesn't have a pass-through outlet, and it doesn't offer as many LAN ports. That said, it's a better all-around performer.
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