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TP-LINK TL-WPA4220KIT Advanced 300Mbps Universal Wi-Fi Range Extender, Repeater, AV500 Powerline Edition, Wi-Fi Clone Button, 2 LAN Ports

  • Easy Wi-Fi Clone
  • New Wi-Fi extension based on Power line
  • Much more stable and fast
  • Ideal solution for multi-level structure
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Warranty

  • Limited Warranty period (parts): 1 year
  • Limited Warranty period (labor): 1 year


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  • Arne K.
  • 7/20/2014 9:11:10 AM
  • Tech Level: Somewhat High
  • Ownership: 1 week to 1 month
  • Verified Owner

4 out of 5 eggsTechnology still "young"

Pros: Works. Setup a breeze. Can be a great solution for difficult-to-reach places. Once it proves to work in a given situation, very reliable.

Cons: You have to physically try it to know if it will work for your situation. Unpredictable before actual installation; can turn out to work only intermittently or not at all, depending on placement, cabling, distance.

Other Thoughts: While the idea is excellent, the technology is still in development. Depending on your situation, it can be a excellent solution or not work well at all. It is not predictable before you try and find out. Once it works, if it works, it is an excellent solution. Technology has improved on reliability over the last generation, even over the 200Mbps-series.

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  • Eric M.
  • 7/15/2014 7:07:54 PM
  • Tech Level: Average
  • Ownership: 1 week to 1 month
  • Verified Owner

4 out of 5 eggsWorked great.

Pros: It was easy if you don't try to do any configuration. I plugged in one end next to my router in a house in a rural area. Then I plugged the receiver in to an outlet in a camper on the property 150 feet away. I entered the password that is written on the bottom of the receiver into my laptop and the laptop connected to the Wifi. It was fast enough to stream video. The TP-LINK web site offers good support and a firmware download.

Cons: The receiver gets hot. There is no fan, just vents. I unplug it when I'm not using it.
The web based configuration did not work. It wasn't found on 192.168.1.1. I did not try the utility that comes on the small CD. The utility software does not support Linux.

Other Thoughts: This solution was cheaper and easier than any WiFi antenna.

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  • Brent M.
  • 7/12/2014 2:29:17 PM
  • Tech Level: High
  • Ownership: 1 day to 1 week
  • Verified Owner

4 out of 5 eggsI'm happy

Pros: Use of powerline makes it easy to expand your network.

Cons: Slightly slower than regular WIFI 2G

Other Thoughts: I couldn't get the WIFI clone to work but not sure if I was doing it right on my router, but just hooked up direct connection and got into the menu to configure everything. I had to change the base IP because my router had .1. I also had to pair the two boxes before LAN worked. I really wanted to extend the guest network but since that is virtualized in the router, you can't and this is true of any guest network. So I just setup a new SSID for my backyard with the same password. I can probably use the same SSID as my guest network but it wouldn't be limited like the guest network is so I decided to create a new one.
I had problems with one of the included cables that seemed to affect performance. I was not reaching speeds over 2MBs when copying files, then after swapping out the included cable with my own I started hitting 7MBs. The WIFI seems to do around 4-6MBs on average. My 50mbps internet bandwith potential is being reached which is the main purpose I wanted this for.
I would say it functions around 1/4 slower than my router 2G and about 3x slower than my 5G. I also flashed it to the latest version of firmware which seems to have helped the performance stay more consistent. But I had to reset the device after the flash because it appeared frozen. After reset, reconfigure and re-pair everything is working great on the latest firmware.

Overall I'm happy now. Ultimately, if you can wire an Access Point that would be best but this is a decent solution if not.

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  • Ted S.
  • 6/24/2014 12:15:00 PM
  • Tech Level: High
  • Ownership: 1 day to 1 week
  • Verified Owner

5 out of 5 eggsExtender Heaven

Pros: Lets you go anywhere that you have a receptacle. Lets you build one heck of a network. FAST speeds.

Cons: I bought too many! I did not realize that both of these units are usable on your network. One for just wired , and one for wired and wireless. I bought 4 packs of these for a 3 story house.

Other Thoughts: You only need one main wired unit at the router. All of the others should be paired to the main, then placed out in the house where you need them.....up to 8 total

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  • Michael T.
  • 5/5/2014 6:15:29 PM
  • Tech Level: Average
  • Ownership: 1 month to 1 year
  • Verified Owner

3 out of 5 eggsNow having issues

Pros: See previous review

Cons: Been having issues with this now. Unplugging and replugging the larger unit clear the problem - but try telling that to a kid that has to do homework online now.

It could also be my fault.

So far I have tried physically removing a Bluetooth adapter and a Rosewill Wifi adapter, no dice.

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5 out of 5 eggsGreat device, Geat Price!

Pros: This is my second Power Line Wi-fi Range extender I have had the chance to test for newegg. I’ve had this device for about a month and have been loving it ever since. Let’s start with the pros:

1. This is a very simple setup device. For just its basic functions of passing the connection through the power lines in my apartment, all you have to do is plug the main end near your router and the second one plugs in wherever you need more range on your wi-fi or just to access the internet through the power line connection.

2. After initial setup, doing more of the advanced functions is pretty easy. It allows for an entirely different named network. Basically, this can help when you want to only connect to the range extender versus still trying to connect to your original wi-fi network.

3. This unit comes with 2 ethernet cables included…one to connect the one end to the router and the other is to connect to any device you want.

4. The range extender feature is nice as I can now access wi-fi on my deck outside…I normally couldn’t do that with my normal wi-fi network.

5. Speeds are pretty fantastic whether it is through the wi-fi extension or through the power line network.

Overall, this is a great device for those looking to extender their existing wi-fi and have power line connections to devices that require a wired connections like blue ray players, older non-wifi televisions and older gaming systems.

Cons: Like with most devices, this one does come with its share of cons…not big enough to take away an egg, but just suggestions for TP-Link to fix for future versions of this device:

1. The LED’s are a bit distracting if you put the device on an outlet visible to the eyes…for me, mine is hidden behind furniture, so it does not affect me unless I move it to another outlet.

2. The documentation could be a tad clearer to explain certain functions of the device, but most of your answers can be found through google.

3. Trying this on a power surge protector can be tricky…I have read forums where sometimes it works out a power surge protector and sometimes it doesn’t. You’ll just have to try it out for yourself.

Other Thoughts: Overall, this device is a great device for its price. It can extend your WiFi to help you get a better signal upstairs, downstairs or outside. This device also helps with trying to provide a wired connection wherever you want within your home, so those older devices that don’t have wifi can now get a connection to the internet.

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4 out of 5 eggsA solid product as long as you understand the limitations.

Pros: (NOTE: My home is about 11 years old, so the electrical wiring is by all accounts good and fresh.)

- Easy setup for most situations
- Adds two 100Mbit ethernet connections where ever you plug in the range extender
- Allows for an entirely new SSID if you are so inclined to keep your existing WiFi separate
- Noticed very little throughput degradation when using the powerline functionality.
- Decent free utilities on the included mini-CD.
- Solid ethernet connection going from 2nd floor office, into the garage, and then ending on the other end of a 100ft extension cable.

- Overall: A well priced product that offers solid performance when used within expectations / known limitations. (Keep reading...)

Cons: - Default IP may interfere with existing router
- The naming conventions and explanations of functions can get somewhat confusing since they are effectively packaging two separate products in this kit.
- I think it's a bit misleading for TP-LINK to state "500Mbps high speed data transmission over a home's existing electrical wiring". Think about that for a minute... They only put 100Mbit ethernet connections on the range extender. And your WiFi signal is 300Mbit. So all that probably does -in theory- is give you more overhead. However, -in practice-, I don't really think it offers much.

- Overall: Documentation could be better and there's a little too much in the "gotcha" department for most people that will buy this without really digging deep into these reviews, the forums, and understanding the setup of their current infrastructure.

Other Thoughts: I'm using a TP-LINK TL-WR1043ND router as the source, so that made it a bit tricky to test the wireless extender. "Why?" Because I already get superb WiFi coverage with it in and around my house. I really have no dead spots. It's in a 2nd floor office and I still get a 270Mbps connection downstairs in my finished basement. Even outside I still get good connection, so testing the range extender wasn't something I can fully critique. And generally speaking, I was really more interested in the ethernet Powerline function from the get-go.

I was tempted to list this as a "CON", but I can't really fault the technology and TP-LINK makes specific note about it... If you plug the sender or receiver into a power strip, surge protector, or battery backup, it's going to be hit or miss if it's going to carry a signal. Most likely, a miss.
This is unfortunate because most people will already be using a powerstrip or battery backup ("UPS") near their networking base. So you are almost forced into repurposing a single wall outlet just for the sending unit and the receiver. I'm not an electrical engineer, but it made sense after thinking about it: This technology really just wants straight copper connections with nothing in between to mess with the signal- much like ethernet cables! As soon as you introduce anything that does surge suppression, line conditioning, etc, you are introducing A LOT more electrical gates for the signal to pass through. That takes a toll on a very specific signal that needs to be transmitted intact.

When testing various powerstrips and UPS'...IF I could establish a connection...it was so broken up that it effectively rendered it useless.

The easiest way to know if you're going to be alright is to take a laptop, disable wifi, and use the ethernet connection to send continuous pings to your router. From a cmd prompt: ping -t your_router_ip. If you are getting solid responses <10ms, you should be OK. If you're seeing scattered replies >100ms, forget it- You've got something in between the sender & receiver. Leaving the ping running, simply walk around to different outlets and plug it the receiver. It will either re-establish a connection or it won't.

So what's the overall impression here? I'd be more impressed if the powerline adapter had 1Gbit ethernet, at least then you could potentially take advantage of that claimed 500Mbit speed. But as it stands, most WiFi is going to be faster than that, so what's really the point of the ethernet, especially two of them? Maybe just for a SmartTV or something?...But even most of those come with WiFi adapters now. I was looking forward to 500Mbit ethernet speeds between my MediaServer in the basement and my PC's around the house. As it stands now, I'm still settling(?) for 270Mbit WiFi speeds.

Verdict: A solid 4-eggs for a product that pretty much does what it's supposed to without too too much hassle.

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5 out of 5 eggsBoosted Wi-Fi for Deck and Yard

Pros: Huge boost for laptop and iPad running at same time out on the deck and back yard.

Very easy setup for extending your existing Wi-Fi reception. For Windows 7, Windows 8/8.1, and iPad Mini we did not need to use the software on the included CD.

Also easy to create a private Wi-Fi network. This is very useful if your existing wireless network is shared with roommates or neighbors.

2-Year Warranty according to TP-Link website.

Works with our existing Netgear 500Mbps powerline adapter.

Wi-Fi booster unit also has bonus network jacks for 2 wired connections to other devices (a game console, a PC, a Blu-ray player, a TV, etc.)

Comes with two ethernet cables (6 ft. each approx.)

Cons: Small row of LED lights flicker in a distracting way if they are in your line of sight.

Other Thoughts: The Quick Install Guide is pretty clear and the actual setup is a few easy steps. You don't need to be an expert.

We're impressed that it provides really strong wireless outdoors even when she's on her iPad and i'm on my laptop. There are no slowdowns! It's plugged into a power outlet just below the window which looks out onto the deck, so reception is strong on the deck and all the way across the back yard - about 40 feet away.

We're equally impressed that it's compatible with our existing powerline adapter of a different brand (Netgear).
Once we got the TP-Link Wi-Fi booster going i unplugged the TP-Link powerline adapter which was near the router (connected with ethernet cable) and plugged our Netgear powerline adapter back in. Everything works OK.

Another convenient factor is we can unplug the Wi-Fi booster unit when we don't need wireless outdoors, and it still works perfectly the next time we plug it in. Just wait a few seconds for it to get going.

Ran a speed test using this TP-Link adapter and got almost the same download /upload speeds as we get on a wired connection (28Mbps Down and 5.2Mbps Up).

This kit is a clear winner for anyone needing boosted Wi-Fi or who needs to create a small "private" Wi-Fi when sharing an internet connection with others.

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3 out of 5 eggsNot So Fast HomePlug Network

Pros: I reviewed the TP-Link model TL-WPA4220KIT - WIFI Range Extender/Repeater/AV500 Power-line Kit. This kit includes two Home Plug AV devices, two Ethernet patch cables a resource CD, and two Quick Installation Guides. Each white patch cable was about 6.5 feet long. These can be easily replaced with longer cables, purchased separately if needed. TP-Link refers to the smaller of the two units as the powerline adapter, also known as the model TL-PA4010. The other half of the kit is the Power-line/WIFI Ethernet Adapter model TL-WPA4220, or Access Point (AP). This larger unit receives the HomePlug signals sent over your AC power lines from the powerline adapter. It can also act as a WIFI booster for a weak area of your home. In additon to WIFI, the TL-WPA4220 AP also offers two 10/100 Ethernet jacks. These could be handy if you want to provide Internet access to: a smart TV, a game box, a home theater system, or a desktop/laptop computer.

The smaller of the two plugin devices, AKA the TL-PA4010 powerline adapter, creates a 300 Mb/s HomePlug AV LAN network inside your home's wiring. The bandwidth is rated at 500 Mbps between your router and the TL-PA4010 adapter. Because it relies on the existing AC wiring inside your home, it avoids the need to have your home hard-wired for Ethernet. However it is subject to a few limitations. The first being the overall network speed is limited to 300 Mbps per HomePlug device, as compared to 1000 Mbps for Ethernet. There is also a 300 meter AC cable length limitation. Lastly the receiving HomePlug device needs to be on the same AC line phase, or it may not receive the Internet signal. Oddly during my testing I would see a strong WIFI signal from the TL-WPA4220 WIFI AP, but no Internet or LAN connectivity when plugged into the wrong phase. Avoid plugging the units into outlets with heavy appliances like washers, dryers, refrigerators, or air conditioners connected to them. The motors in these appliances can give off a lot of electrical noise that will interfere with the HomePlug devices. Up to eight HomePlug AV devices can be used in a single household.

I started setting up the two units by plugging them both into a standard 4 foot wall strip, without any surge protection. TP-Link cautions in their instructions, not to plug the units into surge protectors or extension cords. Next a pairing button is pressed on each unit to allow them to negotiate the same 128-bit AES encryption codes and connect with each other. Encryption is important so your neighbors can't access your private HomePlug network. After I got the two units "paired-up", I next tried moving the TL-WPA4220 AP to different outlets around my house. By plugging the TL-WPA4220 into an outlet near my kitchen table, the WIFI signal produced by the TL-WPA4220 was a solid 5 bars of excellent WIFI reception over the entire kitchen/living room level.

Cons: This had to be one of the more frustrating reviews that I have done for NewEgg. The biggest problem I ran into was the poor documentation included with this kit. The only hard instructions were two brief Quick Installation Guides, consisting of a separate set of instructions for each plugin device, versus a unified guide. The instructions on the CD were also two separate manuals. I found a better updated combined user manual at TP-Link's website that covered both devices. I also found the two utility programs on the CD to be confusing and inadequate for troubleshooting connection problems. I think that my electrical lines maybe too noisy to support HomePlug AV at 300 Mbps. I as only able to get an 11 Mbs between the two deivces on the same outlet strip, according to TP-Link's utility program. TP-Link is very inconsistent as to how they refer to the two HomePlug devices in the various user manuals, using a mixture terms only a network engineer could love. All they had to do is call the source the the HomePlug Source and the TL-WPA4220 the Access Point and be consistent in that usage throughout the manuals.

Plugging in the TL-WPA4220 AP caused an immediate IP address conflict with my home's router, causing my home LAN network to go offline. This is because the TL-WPA4220 AP comes preset to IP address: 192.168.1.1, the same gateway address used by my home's Western Digital router. This is actually a very common base IP address used by many different brands of routers including: ASUS, 3COM, Belkin, Linksys, D-Link, and Netgear. Apple has also started using this non-routable IP address range in their newest versions of its Airport Extreme and the Time Capsule. TP-Link could have simply set the TL-WPA4220 AP to a less seldom used gateway IP address by default for the HomePlug network, or perhaps use DHCP? This default base IP address choice will probably have a lot of customers calling the TP-Link technical support line. This problem should be fixable with a factory firmware update.

One last complaint is the hard to read light gray labeling, that is supposed to identify the functions of the various ports and status LEDs, against the off-white plastic background color of the two HomePlug units. With little or no color contrast, the user has to squint to read what the labels are trying to tell him or her. TP-Link needs to pick a text color that has better contrast against the base plastic color. The color "black" might be a good place to start. This seems to be ongoing issue with TP-Link products that I have reviewed. I call it art-over-function.

Other Thoughts: LAN Speed Test v 3.4 gave the following speed test results:

Mbps: Same Outlet Strip - (LAN Port)
Write Speed: 60.385088
Read Speed: 50.448328

Mbps: Same Outlet Strip - ( WIFI-N)
Write Speed: 43.656784
Read Speed: 67.556112

Mbps: Kitchen Outlet - (WIFI-N)
Write Speed: 12.510016
Read Speed: 12.021032

Mbps: Garage Outlet - (WIFI-N)
Write Speed: 25.201568
Read Speed: 34.80516

I ran each bandwidth test five times and then averaged the resulting data. I started by directly connecting my ThinkPad T410 laptop to an Ethernet port on the TL-WPA4220 AP, with a supplied patch cable. This gave the fastest results. But way below the specified 300 Mbps throughput. This was performed with the two HomePlug devices plugged into the same four foot long outlet strip above my test bench. With the same setup in the second test, I connected my T410 via WIFI-N to the TL-WPA4220 AP. This is pretty close to WIFI-G throughput speeds. But not too impressive, for WIFI-N.

The third test above was conducted using the TL-WPA4220 AP plugged into an outlet located under my kitchen table. These results were well below what I normally get with my WD WIFI-N router. The TL-WPA4220 AP always gave an excellent 5-bar WIFI connection. The HomePlug house wiring portion of the system seems to be the network bottleneck.

In the last garage test, with 270 Feet of Romex cable in the HomePlug network pathway and two breaker boxes; the results were decent, considering the AC wiring distance involved. I think I will stick with my installed 100/1000 Gigabit Ethernet system though. I am at a loss to explain the poor bandwidth test results. Unfortunately the provided utility programs were useless for assisting in tweaking the HomePlug portion of the network. Maybe TP-Link could add their comments?

My overall opinion of the TP-Link model TL-WPA4220 Power line kit after working with it for the past two weeks, is that it includes hardware that is beta quality at best. It is further marred by a confusing user installation experience, due to poor installation software and two convoluted Quick Installation Guides. TP-Link needs to create an installation wizard tapered specifically to the two units included in this kit. I am sure many of these kits will be purchased by users of other router brands, than TP-Link routers. The kit should be compatible with all major router brands on the market. This is an area where a more intelligent setup program would have improved the out-of-the-box experience. I would not recommend this kit to people who know little about setting up networking devices, unless you can obtain help from a knowledgeable friend or associate.

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3 out of 5 eggsGreat Powerline Network Kit, not so great Wifi Extender

Pros: Compact
Two LAN ports
Plug and play powerline network

Cons: Wifi

Other Thoughts: I hoped to use this Wifi extender in my mother’s house to eliminate a dead zone. I first tried to setup the extender feature by using the clone button on the WiFi extender after plugging the device into a wall outlet a few feet from the router. The WiFi cloning button would not work so I confirmed that WPS worked on the router by connecting another network device which I encountered no issue connecting. Then to double confirm the router was not the issue I tried using the cloning button on two more routers of different brands without success. So I instead moved the extender to the other end of the house in the dead zone and connected it using a cat5e cable ran through the attic. I plugged in the powerline network extender into another outlet few yards from plug with the wifi extender. When my laptop was plugged into the powerline network adapter I experienced the same speeds as if I was plugged directly into the router and the powerline pairing took only seconds and did not require the sync button. Using this wired connection through the power outlet I manually accessed the extender from my browser and configured the same wifi settings.

My laptop normally has “no signal” or “very poor” network strength in this area of the house. After manually configuring the extender the network strength did not change. I tried changing the channels and confirmed the firmware was updated to the latest version available but neither had a noticeable effect.

This is a great powerline network kit and one end has two Ethernet jacks, however, I encountered no positive effect from the wifi extender features and do not recommend this product to extend a wifi network.

Manufacturer Response:

Hello Customer,

Thank you for taking the time to check out our Adapters.

We are sorry to see that you've ran into some issues during the initial setup of your extender.

The WPS button is great if you are trying to clone the SSID of the Router; if you dont care abot the cloning of the SSID then this button shouldn't affect you too much.

We are glad to see that you are getting the same speeds as if you plugged into the Router, this definitely shows that the device is working just fine on your circuit.

Please feel free to contact me directly at howard.he@tp-link.com for any issues or concerns.


Best Regards!

TP-LINK Support Team
support.usa@tp-link.com
(866) 225-8139
http://www.tp-link.com/us/support

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