December 30, 2011 by Grant Clauser
How many Wi-Fi connected devices are in your house? I did a mental survey of my house and came up with 12, including iPods, tablets, media streamers, etc. I’ve probably forgotten a few. All of those devices are fed by a single wireless router, and some days that’s a real challenge. How can you get better reception for all of your connected devices?
- Place your wireless router in the center of the house so all of your devices have relatively equal access to it.
- Use a wired connection for your most mediaheavy devices. My router is in my living room with the majority of my A/V gear, so I use an Ethernet connection for the smart TV and cloud-based media server.
- Keep the router off the floor and away from metal surfaces.
- If you have to place your router against an outside wall, try replacing the omnidirectional antenna with a high-gain directional antenna so you’re not sending half your signal outside.
- Add a wireless repeater halfway between your router and your furthest device.
- Upgrade to a high-bandwidth router designed for media.
- Use powerline adapters instead of wireless for some devices. A powerline adapter uses your home’s existing electrical wiring for the network. You simply connect an Ethernet cable from your router to a powerline adapter that’s plugged into an outlet, then use another adapter near the device you want to network and run an Ethernet cable from that to the device.
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Grant Clauser has been covering home electronics for more than 10 years with editorial roles in several consumer and trade magazines. He's done ISF-level damage to hundreds of reviewed products and has had training from THX, the Home Acoustics Alliance, Control4 and Sencore. His latest book is Necessary Myths
. Follow him on Twitter @geclauser.
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