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TP-Link TL-PA201 Starter Kit review

Kat Orphanides
23 Jun 2010
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TP-Link TL-PA201 Starter Kit
Our Rating 
Price when reviewed 
50
inc VAT

If price is more important than having the fastest speeds around, TP-Link's kit is the cheapest way to get HomePlug AV.

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At £50 for a two-adaptor bundle, TP-Link's TL-PA201 Starter Kit is the cheapest way to get up and running with HomePlug AV. Despite costing little more than equipment that uses the original, incredibly slow, HomePlug standard, the TL-PA201 adaptors have all the features we'd expect from a current HomePlug kit.

Each has a single 10/100Mbit/s Ethernet port, push-button security that allows you to create a connection secured with 128-bit AES encryption with a bare minimum of effort and they come with software that allows you to monitor your Powerline network and create a secure connection to older HomePlug AV equipment that doesn't support push-button security. LED indicator lights display each adaptor's connection and security status.

Although the adaptors have a theoretical maximum throughput of 200Mbit/s, the actual performance of the TL-PA201 in our tests was unremarkable, with throughput of 41.44Mbit/s in our tests. While this is by no means the worst Powerline transfer speed we've ever seen, it's not going to break any records, either.

That said, the most persuasive thing about this kit is its price. At £50, you're paying just £25 for each adaptor. This is great if you want to use Powerline networking all around your home and need multiple adaptors.

We were also impressed by TP-Link's generous three year RTB warranty, which is rivalled (it quality kits) only by that of Devolo's dLAN 200 AVplus and AVsmart+ Starter Kits. If a reasonable price is more important to you than getting the fastest speeds, the TL-PA201 Starter Kit is a perfect Budget Buy.

Details

Rating****
Powerline networking standardHomePlug AV
Homeplug stated speed200Mbit/s

Physical

Size92x70x44mm
Ethernet ports1

Buying Information

Price£50
Warrantythree years RTB
Supplierhttp://www.cclonline.com
Detailswww.tp-link.com

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