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Netgear EX-6100 review

Andrew Unsworth
24 Aug 2014
Expert Reviews Recommended Logo
Our Rating 
Price when reviewed 
62
inc VAT

A user-friendly range extender, the Netgear EX-6100 has everything we want

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Specifications

Warranty: two-year RTB, Details: www.netgear.co.uk, Part code: EX6100-100UKS

The Netgear EX-6100 is designed to extend the range of your wireless network so that computers and devices can access it in places where they otherwise wouldn’t. The EX-6100 can extend the range of 2.4GHz and 5GHz networks simultaneously, so all types of device will be able to connect to it. Even better, the EX-6100 is compatible with 802.11ac devices, although it’s rated at a theoretical 450Mbit/s on the 5GHz band, which is lower than the theoretical throughput of the fastest 802.11ac devices.

As the EX-6100 is a Netgear device, setup is characteristically easy. You initially connect a laptop or other device to the EX-6100 via Wi-Fi, open your browser and run the setup wizard. The EX-6100 scans the airwaves for wireless networks, and you select the one you want to extend.

Helpfully, the EX-6100 has a number of lights on the front that indicated the quality of signal from the wireless network it’s extending and the wireless device or devices connected to it. The lights will be red if there’s a poor signal, orange if it’s not so good and green if everything’s okay. The lights are clear enough to see from a distance. Although it’s primarily a Wi-Fi device, you can connect an Ethernet-only device, such as a set-top box or smart TV, to the EX-6100’s gigabit Ethernet port.

It’s difficult to test range extenders, but we tested the EX-6100 by connecting it to our laptop via Ethernet and having it extend the signal from our Linksys WRT1900AC router at a distance of 10 metres. On the 5GHz band, with the EX-6100 using an 802.11ac connection, we saw an average 181.8Mbit/s. On the 2.4GHz band, we saw an average 55.9MMbit/s. Results on both bands were more than we expected from the EX-6100, but it’s important to remember that you’ll see lower results over Wi-Fi, and the quality of the signal will depend on your environment.

We found the EX-6100 to be a decent product, but it isn’t perfect. The body of the EX-6100 protrudes down from the mains socket, for instance, which means you could have trouble using it if your mains sockets are located just above skirting boards. It only just squeezed in over our work surface. We also think Powerline networking adaptors with built-in Wi-Fi, such as the Devolo dLAN 500 AV Wireless+, would be a better bet if you’re having trouble connecting devices in a distant part of your house. Such kits are typically more expensive than the EX-6100, however, so if you need a Wi-Fi range extender, you should buy the Netgear EX-6100. 

Buying information
Price including VAT62
Warrantytwo-year RTB
Supplierwww.dabs.com
Detailswww.netgear.co.uk
Part codeEX6100-100UKS

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