February 09, 2010
| by Arlen Schweiger
It’s always harder to wire your home for audio/video or automation systems if the walls are already up and sealed. And the way new construction is these days, chances are your home falls under the category of “existing” and its walls aren’t open to the studs for convenient wiring runs.
If you’re a multimedia hound who wants to access PC-stored or web music, videos and more throughout your house, you could go the wireless way and keep your fingers crossed that everything keeps working without skipping a beat. You can also take advantage of the electrical wiring that’s already been established in your home and turn traditional outlets into part of a network.
The latter is what Plaster Networks has been working to develop solutions for (and lately we’ve seen multiroom audio companies such as Russound and NuVo leaning to as well in “no new wires” solutions). The manufacturer offers its PLN3 Ethernet powerline adapters to deliver reliable and cost-effective networking—and Plaster also mixed in the capability for you to remotely manage and configure the home network.
These PLN3 bricks serve up some zippy broadband, with up to 200Mbps PHY rates (and equivalent Ethernet rates up to 100Mbps) via powerline, based on the HomePlug AV standard to network your Ethernet-capable media devices. Based on the review by We Got Served (see unbox photo below), the dual Ethernet port units are pretty easy to install, connect and use.
The Plaster Networks solution also features IX2 powerline isolators to optimize performance by filtering noise and boosting network reliability. You can also use the Plaster Networks Service with the PLN3 adapters to tap into the throughput capacity of your powerline network instantly through a standard browser and see just how speedy things are working.
Look for the PLN3 adapters on the company’s website, at $149.95 for a set of two ($96.95 apiece). The IX2 isolators are $24.95.
Arlen writes about home technology installations and product news and reviews for electronichouse.com
and Electronic House magazine.