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I think I read before that it depends on the powerline in your house, so can I expect it to work at least ok at my home?

Do I need to sync it all the time (eg. when I switch off the power)? Or does it automatically detect the other side ?

What kind of speeds/stability can I expect? Better than wireless?

What other things must I need to know ?

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No need to "sync" all time, the Adapters search and find each other automatically, they only need to be configured to the same password (which is the default condition). –  Werner Henze May 3 '13 at 11:48
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up vote 4 down vote accepted

Not knowing the state of the wiring in your house makes this a bit difficult to answer except for some general points:

  • You can get powerline units that have headline speeds of 14 (pretty much old tech now), 85, 200Mbit/sec and 1Gbit/sec and they are generally backwards compatible with each other
  • You plug them in and they 'just work', provided the mains wiring's not horrendously bad
  • The units work on a single phase and within the domestic metered zone but will not necessarily behave between phases (many housing areas are wired with each house on a separate phase to balance the load on the local transformer)
  • The units may struggle to work at best speed if you plug them into power extensions - especially if the extensions have any form of surge or spike protection.
  • Most makes of unit can have a 'secret' group/ID set on them so that someone can't come along with their own plug and join your network
  • If you want to stream HD video across a powerline link, go for 200Mbit units or better
  • I have streamed standard definition video across 85Mbit plugs with no apparent problems
  • I have used the units with VoIP telephones and gaming consoles with no noticeable lag or performance issues

  • I have two 85Mbit units in my house (built around 1870 and rewired in the 1970s) between floors and the effective speed according to the tools that came with them say I am getting a speed of around 67Mbit/sec - so a bit better than to 54Mbit wireless.

Invite me round for tea and I'll bring a couple to try - or see if you can borrow a couple from a friend.

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