powerline adapters? do they work?

Discussion in 'Mac OS X Server, Xserve, and Networking' started by j2048b, Dec 12, 2011.

  1. j2048b macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2009
    Location:
    Cali
    #1
    I am looking to get some power line adapters but wanted some basic info first:

    can u plug a switch into one and then numerous other devices will get great internect conectivity just from this power line adapter since it will be going through ur power plugs?

    what brand is the best and most affordable

    or ate they used just for one device to be plugged into and they only get the speed of say your wireless?

    any answers will help me dicide so i dont have to run wires!

    thanks
     
  2. aalegado macrumors newbie

    aalegado

    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2001
    Location:
    Lost Wages, Nevaduh
    #2
    I've used Netgear XAVB101 and ZyXEL PLA407 units in my home. In my application both devices supported a 10/100 switch at the "far-end" to which I have connected (in various combinations): a Samsung Ethernet-equipped HDTV, Roku set-top box, Playstation 3, AppleTV, and a Vonage VoIP router. The "near-end" connection was to a 10/100 router/switch in my home office.

    The day-to-day operation of the PowerLine adapter was transparent to my network. Once the initial set-up was done, I basically forgot about the adapters because they just worked. In both cases, the set-up was a little involved because I was turning on the secure connection feature. I had to tinker with the units for a few minutes before they'd connect. However, once I'd done that, as noted above, day-to-day operation was issue-free.


    Both units were advertised as "200Mbps". The far-end devices have never been anything I'd consider "bandwidth" intensive nor mission critical and I have not noticed any degradation or limitation relating to bandwidth.

    I used the Netgear for about 2 years and recently replaced it with the Zyxel since the Netgear was actually borrowed from a friend. The Zyxel has been running trouble-free for about a month.
     
  3. j2048b thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2009
    Location:
    Cali
    #3
    sounds great! now do these offer gigabit connections around the 10/100/1000 connection speeds? i ask because i am trying to stream from an old windows ibm intelliserver to the ps3 with playon, and it blows! but it could be the fact that i only have 3-5 gig of memory in the computer?

    but with the adapters, how is the security? i run an aebs with wpa2 throughout the house and with the adapters they only do wep correct?

    my biggest concern is that i dont want to run or drill wires everywhere, but might be just as easy with a faster conncetion if i do as opposed to the adapters?

    thanks
     
  4. aalegado macrumors newbie

    aalegado

    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2001
    Location:
    Lost Wages, Nevaduh
    #4
    They both support 128bit AES which is better than WEP and probably equal to WPA. I have no way of actually evaluating how secure the connections are—I can only trust that I've set up the secure connections correctly and that there's no one nearby interested in the data following over my home network.

    Off hand I would guess that your Intelliserver might lack the CPU horsepower and/or bus bandwidth to push data at Gigabit speeds. Even if it could, these PowerLine devices max-out at 200Mbps so you won't see anywhere near Gigabit speed across a PowerLine connection.

    The documentation (what there is of it) suggests that you might get anywhere from 50% to 70% of the rated maximum which is reasonable for most Internet-based video streaming applications.

    I think PowerLine has worked well for me home network. It complements my WiFi network nicely.
     
  5. j2048b thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2009
    Location:
    Cali
    #5
    ok so with the security, i will have to switch all my devices using the powerline adapter to the pass word associated with it correct?

    my intelliserver actually has:

    3.0 GHz 1333 MHz FSB SMP-capable,
    dual-core, Intel Xeon microprocessor
    Intel Xeon 5130, 5140, 5150, and 5160 dual-core processors
    with Intel Extended Memory 64 Technology (EM64T)
    2 MB per core on-board L2 cache


    but only 3 gig ram, so it might be the issue?

    just bought the monster power adapters so we will see how that goes, got the dual pak starter kit as well as the
    Monster Cable Digital Life PowerNet DX PLN 300 Powerline Network Adapter - 2 x Powerline, 4 x Network - 200 Mbps

    for the theater system! for now, until i get my theater cabinet going then i have a huge switch and will have to run everything wired! ''


    where can i post a question asking about wiring my ethernet from my phone line? my whole house is cat 5 ecable, but want to use them as ethernet at each spot and think i got it figured out, but not sure yet?
     
  6. aalegado macrumors newbie

    aalegado

    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2001
    Location:
    Lost Wages, Nevaduh
    #6
    Not necessary.

    The PowerLink devices act as network bridges and their operation is transparent to the devices on either side of the bridged network segment. The PowerLink devices themselves must share the same password/security key but they take care of that themselves when you perform the set-up process.

    When you have the PowerLink devices set-up properly, any devices at either end of the PowerLink segment will "see" each other as if they were on the same network segment.

    That machine definitely has the CPU power. 3GB of RAM should be sufficient. Any chance that your cabling is not good enough for Gigabit? Gigabit Ethernet over copper requires all four pairs to be Cat-5 or better. If one or both of the extra pairs is bad (bad cable, bad termination, etc.), then your network adapter won't connect at Gigabit speed and will fall-back to Fast Ethernet speed (100Mbit).

    I like how newer homes come wired with 4 pair Cat-5 cable now.

    Have you made your own Ethernet cables before? It's actually "easy" but you have to carefully follow the rules when you are terminating cables (i.e. punching down cables to a 66-block or crimping cables onto a Ethernet plug, maintain turns/inch at the point of termination, etc.).

    Quality of punches and wire stripping will have significant influence over the performance of the cables you make. A poorly terminated Cat-6 cable can perform at Cat-2 levels or worse if you are not careful!

    Here's some sites I found with a quick Google search:

    http://www.groundcontrol.com/galileo/ch5-ethernet.htm
    http://www.ertyu.org/steven_nikkel/ethernetcables.html

    Tip: There are two formal wiring specifications for use with making Ethernet cables: T568A and T568B. These specifications apply to wired "straight-through" cables and only differ by which color-coded cable pair is considered "Pair 1", which is "Pair 2" and so on. It doesn't matter which one you use but you want to pick one and stick with it for all the cables you make so that your color codes are consistent.

    You can mix-and-match cables manufactured to either specification but when you are making your own cables, it's good practice to pick one specification and stick with it forever. "Mixed" cables work because as far as the network devices are concerned, all "straight through cables" have the correct signals on the correct pins even though the color code of wires carrying the signals may be different from cable to cable.

    If your phone service is carried over a Cat-5 run, you can get away with using 2 of the 3 remaining cable pairs to carry a non-Gigabit Ethernet connection (i.e. Ethernet and Fast Ethernet only use 2 pairs). This is technically against the "rules" (mixing functions, i.e. computer network and phone network on the same cable) but it will still work. The primary problem with doing this is that you end up with a custom cable run where the color codes are used "incorrectly". The cable will still work but a network technician might scratch his head and cry foul if he has to trouble-shoot your wiring.

    Good luck.
     
  7. lostless macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Oct 22, 2005
    #7
    I got the Netgear AV500 set and like them. Why I like it better than wireless is the constant solid connection. I've always noticed that my wireless signal upstairs would go up and down in speed. Also latency is now a pretty solid 12ms instead of the old wireless 50-200ms. Don't expect it to be faster than direct wire, I get only about 64Mb/s out of the total advertised 500. Your milage may vary depending how far the adaptors are from each other.
     

Share This Page