The conversation on this page has been archived and is no longer active.

Powerline Adapters

Message #1 - Posted 2012/02/04 - Otto Pylot

I've been peripherally aware of these for awhile but saw an ad today in the new issue of MacUser. If I understand correctly, one adapter is plugged into an outlet with an enet connection to the router, and then another adapter is plugged into any other outlet in the house. Connecting that adapter via an enet cable to a device (laptop, enet capable BD player, ATV2, etc) will result in a "wired" connection.

How well does that work? Any issues/dangers with an enet connection to an outlet? Seems like an ideal situation for anyone who has a house with "dead" areas for WiFi or want their smart tv/BD player to have a wired connection instead of WiFi. Thoughts?

Deja Moo: I've seen this bullshit before. My address has been anti-spammed. Please respond to: scasse@invalid.net replacing invalid with sonic.

Message #2 - Posted 2012/02/04 - nospam

Previously, Otto Pylot wrote:

I've been peripherally aware of these for awhile but saw an ad today in the new issue of MacUser. If I understand correctly, one adapter is plugged into an outlet with an enet connection to the router, and then another adapter is plugged into any other outlet in the house. Connecting that adapter via an enet cable to a device (laptop, enet capable BD player, ATV2, etc) will result in a "wired" connection.

How well does that work? Any issues/dangers with an enet connection to an outlet? Seems like an ideal situation for anyone who has a house with "dead" areas for WiFi or want their smart tv/BD player to have a wired connection instead of WiFi. Thoughts?

they mostly work as long as you don't expect overly high bandwidth. a bigger problem is that your house may be wired in a way where only half of it will work.

Message #3 - Posted 2012/02/04 - Jeff Gaines

On 04/02/2012 in message Otto Pylot wrote:

How well does that work? Any issues/dangers with an enet connection to an outlet? Seems like an ideal situation for anyone who has a house with "dead" areas for WiFi or want their smart tv/BD player to have a wired connection instead of WiFi. Thoughts?

They work quite well, though not as fast as a standard Ethernet connection. You can get them with built in WAP as well so can take wireless to points that would otherwise be difficult to reach.

I believe they use high frequencies over the mains wiring so there are some complaints in the UK from radio amateurs about interference.

Jeff Gaines Wiltshire UK
All those who believe in psychokinesis raise my hand.

Message #4 - Posted 2012/02/06 - Christoph Gartmann

Previously, Otto Pylot <otto@bogus.address.com> writes:

I've been peripherally aware of these for awhile but saw an ad today in the new issue of MacUser. If I understand correctly, one adapter is plugged into an outlet with an enet connection to the router, and then another adapter is plugged into any other outlet in the house. Connecting that adapter via an enet cable to a device (laptop, enet capable BD player, ATV2, etc) will result in a "wired" connection.

Exactly.

How well does that work?

As usual, it depends...

Any issues/dangers with an enet connection to an outlet?

It is working as long as the two outlets involved are on the same fuse. If this is not the case, it is still working as long as the two outlets are on the same phase. If this is not the case you'll need a phase coupler in your fuse box. In addition some surge protective multi socket outlets block this signal, too.

Seems like an ideal situation for anyone who has a house with "dead" areas for WiFi or want their smart tv/BD player to have a
wired connection instead of WiFi. Thoughts?

Powerline can be faster than any WiFi, especially if the distance between the WiFi access point and the computer is large.

Regards,
Christoph Gartmann

Max-Planck-Institut fuer Phone : +49-761-5108-464 Fax: -80464 Immunbiologie und Epigenetik
Postfach 1169 Internet: gartmann@immunbio dot mpg dot de D-79011 Freiburg, Germany
http://www.immunbio.mpg.de/home/menue.html

Message #5 - Posted 2012/02/07 - Justin

On 2/4/12 6:20 PM, Jeff Gaines wrote:

On 04/02/2012 in message Otto Pylot wrote:

How well does that work? Any issues/dangers with an enet connection to an outlet? Seems like an ideal situation for anyone who has a house with "dead" areas for WiFi or want their smart tv/BD player to have a wired connection instead of WiFi. Thoughts?

There was a review on Youtube that showed it was about half as fast as a 100BT ethernet connection.

They work quite well, though not as fast as a standard Ethernet connection. You can get them with built in WAP as well so can take wireless to points that would otherwise be difficult to reach.

I believe they use high frequencies over the mains wiring so there are some complaints in the UK from radio amateurs about interference.

Same in the US. It turns the entire house wiring into a jammer for those frequencies.

Message #6 - Posted 2012/02/08 - Paul Sture

On Mon, 06 Feb 2012 07:38:33 +0000, Christoph Gartmann wrote:

Previously, Otto Pylot <otto@bogus.address.com> writes:

I've been peripherally aware of these for awhile but saw an ad today in the new issue of MacUser. If I understand correctly, one adapter is plugged into an outlet with an enet connection to the router, and then another adapter is plugged into any other outlet in the house. Connecting that adapter via an enet cable to a device (laptop, enet capable BD player, ATV2, etc) will result in a "wired" connection.

Exactly.

How well does that work?

As usual, it depends...

Any issues/dangers with an enet connection to an outlet?

It is working as long as the two outlets involved are on the same fuse. If this is not the case, it is still working as long as the two outlets are on the same phase. If this is not the case you'll need a phase coupler in your fuse box. In addition some surge protective multi socket outlets block this signal, too.

Thanks for the explanation. I have come across varying levels of confusion on this topic in the past. "Can my neighbours see it?", for example.

I did experience interference problems using one supplied by a hotel I was staying in a few years ago. It worked fine for the first few days, then the connection would gradually slow to a crawl and then leap over to another subnet which had no outside connection. One of life's mysteries why and how that happened...

Paul Sture

Message #7 - Posted 2012/02/08 - Christoph Gartmann

Previously, Paul Sture <paul@sture.ch> writes:

[Powerline adaptors]

Thanks for the explanation. I have come across varying levels of confusion on this topic in the past. "Can my neighbours see it?", for example.

Modern adaptors use an encryption technology to avoid that. In addition it is technically unlikely that the signal passes through the fuse box into the public wire as this one is a three phase current.

I did experience interference problems using one supplied by a hotel I was staying in a few years ago. It worked fine for the first few days, then the connection would gradually slow to a crawl and then leap over to another subnet which had no outside connection. One of life's mysteries why and how that happened...

Quite simple: they gave out some more of these gadgets to other customers which would explain the decrease in speed. In addition these were old-fashioned boxes that didn't use encryption and hence the other subnet.

We tested some powerline adaptors when they just came out. The experience was bad, so we decided that they were unuasable. But a few years later they became a lot better, so we did a second test. Since then we use them under certain circumstances.

Regards,
Christoph Gartmann

Max-Planck-Institut fuer Phone : +49-761-5108-464 Fax: -80464 Immunbiologie und Epigenetik
Postfach 1169 Internet: gartmann@immunbio dot mpg dot de D-79011 Freiburg, Germany
http://www.immunbio.mpg.de/home/menue.html

Message #8 - Posted 2012/02/08 - Paul Sture

On Wed, 08 Feb 2012 11:03:58 +0000, Christoph Gartmann wrote:

Previously, Paul Sture <paul@sture.ch> writes:

[Powerline adaptors]

Thanks for the explanation. I have come across varying levels of confusion on this topic in the past. "Can my neighbours see it?", for example.

Modern adaptors use an encryption technology to avoid that. In addition it is technically unlikely that the signal passes through the fuse box into the public wire as this one is a three phase current.

I'm not sure that three phase comes into the house, at least in the UK (here in Switzerland it often does, and it's not uncommon to have washing machines and ovens on three phase).

But encryption should cover the majority of uses.

I did experience interference problems using one supplied by a hotel I was staying in a few years ago. It worked fine for the first few days, then the connection would gradually slow to a crawl and then leap over to another subnet which had no outside connection. One of life's mysteries why and how that happened...

Quite simple: they gave out some more of these gadgets to other customers which would explain the decrease in speed. In addition these were old-fashioned boxes that didn't use encryption and hence the other subnet.

I rather suspected an infested PC, belonging to either another guest or the hotel itself.

We tested some powerline adaptors when they just came out. The experience was bad, so we decided that they were unuasable. But a few years later they became a lot better, so we did a second test. Since then we use them under certain circumstances.

Good news then.

Paul Sture

Message #9 - Posted 2012/02/09 - Daniel Cohen

Justin wrote:

There was a review on Youtube that showed it was about half as fast as a 100BT ethernet connection.

But note that there are three levels of powerline speeds available, so one does need to say which are being used in these comparisons. --
<http://www.decohen.com> The Labyrinth of the Heart: Changed Myths for Changing Lives book and e-book <http://www.decohen.com/labyrinth> Send e-mail to the Reply-To address, not the From address.

Need Help? Have a Question?

Looking for more help, comments, and answers?

Ask your questions on Ask Different. Ask Different is a community of Apple users ready to help.