30 Apr TP-Link | N300 Wi-Fi Extender Review
TP-Link has always been one of the companies I admire. When I saw that they’re launching the new N300, I knew I had to give it a try.
What made this product really stand out in my eyes was its affordability.
I believe that because it’s so affordable, people will be willing to use it as their first extender.
However, affordability doesn’t equal quality.
So let’s see what this highly affordable extender can offer.
2. Up To 300MBps
3. Compatible with any Gateway, Router and Access Point
4. Two Antennas
5. Gigabit Ethernet Ports
6. Set Time Schedules
7. 2-year warranty
You liked how the product sounds, you ordered it and, boom, there it is.
You have received the package.
What you should do is check the instructions on the side of the box, they’re all you’re going to need to set up the extender. Here are the steps:
1. Plug the extender in an outlet near your router
2. Wait for the green light to start pinging
3. Press your router’s WPS button
4. Press the button on the extender
The process is the same for most of the routers. The blinking green light should turn red and after a short period of time, it should turn to solid green, no blinking.
That’s when you know you’re connected.
Many people would simply rush to their smartphone and try to connect to the extender’s network to see if it works.
So, get yours and look for a network that ends in “_EXT.” When you’re asked to put in the password, just use your normal Wi-Fi password.
That’s all you need to do in order to get started.
If you have any issues relating to the drivers, you should call customer service. However, you should expect that to take you some time because the customer support for TP-Link appears to be severely lacking, and if you really need immediate help with the setup process, this can truly be a turn-off.
Compact in its size, the extender can plug in any electrical socket. It also contains two antennas that are highly effective at extending your network signal.
What many users can agree on is that when this product works, it really does increase the internet speed.
Wireless speeds up to 300MBps are supported.
It also offers dual-band connectivity, but as you’re about to learn soon, this is a key issue with the device.
The company has failed to update the old firmware issues, resulting in many people losing connection when they hop on the 5GHz band.
The control over the device is amazing. There is an option that allows you to set schedules for the network, letting you choose the time when devices would be able to connect to it and when they wouldn’t.
If devices shouldn’t be connected, such as your son’s smartphone when he’s supposed to study, you can have his device automatically kicked off of the network. Pretty neat, huh? Evil, but neat.
Putting the extender’s quirks and issues aside, it truly is a great product when it’s working properly and everything is set up.
But there are certain things we really like about the product.
Although it came up short during our research, the N300 is a product we really wanted to like.
A great feature of this extender is that it’s universally compatible with other hardware.
You can practically manage it from your phone.
The schedule option can prove to be incredibly handy.
Especially if you have kids that are procrastinating their studies due to pointless internet sessions in their room.
You also have the option of plugging your device (laptop, phone, etc.) into the Ethernet port at the bottom of the extender for faster speeds.
It’s compact, it’s speedy and it’s affordable. It also comes with a long warranty.
The N300 is amazing when it works. So amazing, that everybody who’s connected to it is going to enjoy it.
The main issue we had is that the device didn’t always work, especially when it came down to switching from the 2GHz mode to the 5GHz mode.
The product claims to work well in both modes, but combined with a router that has a dual-band mode will not work well.
The main problem is that TP-Link hasn’t launched firmware updates for quite some time now. When the issue was first found, they could have resolved it with ease.
The device may still work well if you install DD-WRT.
But the company should have taken responsibility for the issue and not require the customer to search and install third-party firmware in order to get their product running.
TP-Link definitely knows what they’re doing, but they should have done more to improve the product.
The N300 is a great product, but it’s not our best choice for a Wi-Fi extender.
I may have included this product to my must-haves, but the company could have really done more to meet the requirements of the customer.
However, if you don’t mind getting a third-party firmware and hacking through this product, it might really be a great value for the money you pay.
Otherwise, I recommend using one of our other extenders that have been reviewed on our site.