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The 5 Best Powerline Adapters for Your Home Network

Gavin Phillips Updated 24-03-2020

Powerline adapters are truly wonderful. Wi-Fi frees us to walk around with our devices, but sometimes you need the stability of a wired connection. That’s tricky if your router is at the opposite end of your house.

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Instead of running a 100-ft Ethernet cable from one end to the other, consider using powerline adapters. Powerline adapters plug into regular electrical outlets and use electrical wiring to transmit network traffic. Sounds magical, right?

But what are the best powerline adapters on the market? And how do you know which powerline adapter to choose?

How to Choose a Powerline Adapter

Before we examine the best powerline adapters you can lay your hands on, consider exactly what you’re looking for. Like all technology, powerline adapters have technical jargon to wade through (though luckily, it isn’t too heavy).

When you’re browsing product listings, consider the following:

  • Speed: First up, speed matters. Powerline adapter traffic ratings start as low as 200Mbps and have a middle ground between 500-1000Mbps. Top of the line speeds can reach up to 3000Mbps (though you’re more likely to encounter 2000Mbps in the current market). Your speed requirements depend on the maximum speed of your internet connection and how much speed you use in practice. Given modern data transmission rates for high-quality video, audio, and other media types, anything under 500Mbps is likely to cause slow network rates.
  • Connections: Powerline adapters come with a few basic connections. Powerline adapters rated over 500Mbps will use Gigabit Ethernet ports to enable faster speeds. Pass-through power sockets are also handy, allowing you to use a regular plug with your powerline adapter. Also, some powerline adapters double as Wi-Fi repeaters, adding to your network capacity.
  • Distances: The distance between your powerline adapters also makes a difference. Powerline adapters have a theoretical distance limit of about 1000 feet. While this is quite far, you will encounter some data transmission issues at the extremities.
  • Price: Obviously, you don’t want to pay through the nose for your powerline adapters. Prices vary, but starter powerline adapter packs don’t usually cost more than $50, if that. Advanced models cost anywhere up to $200, but any more than that and you really must question what you’re purchasing.

You have a couple of other considerations, too. What is the condition of the wiring in your house? Old wiring will produce slower speeds, but there are other ways you can boost your powerline adapter speeds.

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Furthermore, you must consider how your electrical wiring works from one floor to another, or even different rooms (if that’s what you’re planning to do). Many older powerline adapters don’t transmit from circuit-to-circuit, somewhat reducing your options. However, the newer HomePlug AV2 standard uses higher signaling frequencies and is more likely to cross from circuit to circuit.

The Best Powerline Adapters

Without further ado, here are the best powerline adapters you can buy today.

1. TP-Link AV2000 TL-PA9020P

TP-Link Powerline Adapter TL-PA9020P TP-Link Powerline Adapter TL-PA9020P Buy Now On Amazon $67.49

First up is the TP-Link AV2000 TL-PA9020P powerline adapter kit. The TP-Link AV2000 TL-PA9020P is one of the best overall powerline adapters on the market right now. It features:

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  • Up to 2000Mbps data transfer
  • Dual Gigabit Ethernet ports
  • 2X2 MIMO with beamforming
  • 128-bit AES encryption
  • HomePlug AV2
  • Compatible with other AV-series powerline adapters

While the TL-PA9020P has the space-creating pass-through plug socket, it lacks Wi-Fi. However, building a simple network is easy as you can pair the TL-PA9020P and TL-WPA9610 powerline adapters.

The MIMO with beamforming regulates data transmissions to enable multiple simultaneous connections, similar to MU-MIMO routers. In that, the TL-PA9020P is an excellent starter powerline adapter kit at a decent price point.

2. NETGEAR PowerLINE PLW1010-100NAS

NETGEAR PLW1010-100NAS NETGEAR PLW1010-100NAS Buy Now On Amazon $89.99

The NETGEAR PLW1010-100NAS is a handy Wi-Fi-enabled powerline adapter you can use to bring both wired and wireless connectivity to the hard to reach corners of your home. NETGEAR is a well-respected name in the world of home networking, and no best powerline adapter list would be complete without one of their products.

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The NETGEAR PLW1010-100NAS features:

  • Up to 1000Mbps data transfer
  • 11ac Wi-Fi extender
  • HomePlug AV2
  • Single Gigabit Ethernet port

In the box, you’ll find two adapters. You plug the basic adapter in near your router and plug the adapter with Wi-Fi aerials in where you need a wired connection. You can then set the second adapter to function as either a Wi-Fi repeater or just an Ethernet outlet.

3. D-Link AV2 1000 DHP-601AV

D-Link DHP-601AV D-Link DHP-601AV Buy Now On Amazon $66.99

Are the above too fancy for your needs? Some entry-level powerline adapters are available, too. If you only need to connect a single device to your router, a cheaper single port powerline adapter is worth considering. The D-Link AV2 1000 DHP-601AV is one of these basic powerline adapters that is more than capable of high-speed data transmission at a very low price.

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  • Up to 1000Mbps data transfer
  • Single Gigabit Ethernet port
  • 128-bit AES encryption
  • HomePlug AV2

The DHP-601AV is basic, but it enables a fast connection between your router and a computer, smart TV, or gaming console. Unfortunately, it doesn’t feature a pass-through socket or Wi-Fi. But at the very low price-point, the DHP-601AV is a low-risk entry point to powerline adapters.

4. D-Link AV2 2000 HD DHP-701AV

D-Link HD DHP-701AV D-Link HD DHP-701AV Buy Now On Amazon $43.83

The basic D-Link powerline adapter isn’t fitting the bill for you? Upgrade to the next model in the D-Link AV2 series: the D-Link AV2 2000 HD (DHP-701AV). The DHP-701AV is also small in size, but unlike the DHP-601AV, it has integrated Wi-Fi.

  • Up to 1900Mbps data transfer
  • Single Gigabit Ethernet port
  • Wi-Fi
  • 128-bit AES encryption
  • HomePlug AV2
  • MIMO
  • Integrated power saving mode

The power saving mode switches adapter to sleep mode when there are no data transmissions over a certain period. The DHP-701AV is well worth the extra initial outlay, as it boosts the Wi-Fi signal throughout your home as well as providing a wired connection.

5. ZyXEL Powerline AV1300 PLA5405V2KIT

ZyXEL Powerline PLA5405V2KIT ZyXEL Powerline PLA5405V2KIT Buy Now On Amazon $69.99

Finishing up the list, the ZyXEL PLA5405V2KIT. There’s a lot of letters and numbers in that product name, but it means this is the second iteration of this powerline adapter to hit the market.

The PLA5405V2KIT features:

  • Up to 1300Mbps data transfer
  • Single Gigabit Ethernet port
  • HomePlug AV2
  • Compact design
  • 2×2 MIMO

The ZyXEL PLA5405V2KIT isn’t flashy, but it does offer performance that will suit almost any home. It doesn’t feature Wi-Fi, which is a slight shame, but the high-speed data transfer and MIMO functionality more than make up for it.

What Powerline Adapter Best Suits Your Home?

Of course, every home is different, has different wiring, and a range of data requirements. Luckily, you’ll find a vast range of powerline adapters to suit your needs, even if you cannot choose between an Ethernet connection or using your Wi-Fi.

There is one more powerline adapter feature to consider, too: your home internet speed. Before purchasing a powerline adapter, it may be worth troubleshooting the things that might be slowing down your home Wi-Fi network 9 Things That Might Be Slowing Down Your Home Wi-Fi Network Tired of slow or spotty internet? Check these things that could be slowing down your home Wi-Fi network. Read More .

Related topics: Computer Networks, Ethernet, Powerline, Wi-Fi.

Affiliate Disclosure: By buying the products we recommend, you help keep the site alive. Read more.

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  1. jennifer tran
    October 17, 2019 at 8:16 pm

    I noticed these are all HPAV powerline adapters. Have you tried G.hn Powerline Adapters?

  2. Matt Mogram
    June 15, 2018 at 8:33 pm

    Are you sure the D-Link AV2 2000 HD (DHP-701AV) has WiFi? The D-Link website does not mention that it has WiFi.

    • George Branchaud
      July 22, 2019 at 10:23 pm

      I realize this question is a year old.
      The D-Link page for the DHP-701AV (PowerLine AV2 2000 Gigabit Starter Kit) has a line stating "Get better Wi-Fi coverage in hard-to-reach rooms." It's under the model number, above the photos. There's no way Mr. Mogram could have missed it. D-Link must have added it since June 15, 2018.
      Also, I downloaded and carefully read the data sheet, which is dated 2016. It says nothing about Wi-Fi, so that should be updated.

  3. Matt Mogram
    June 15, 2018 at 8:32 pm

    Are you sure the D-Link AV2 2000 HD (DHP-701AV) includes Wi-Fi? I've searched the D-Link website for specs and there is no mention of it being a Wi-Fi access point.