What Speed Can I Expect From A Powerline Adapter?

Manufacturers of Ethernet Powerline adapters always report the theoretical maximum speeds of the hardware. In reality, you will not get that speed but aiming for as close to it as possible is not difficult. First off, we need to understand what causes the difference between actual and reported speeds. This can include many things, but generally speaking they are likely to be one of these:

Issues affecting speed

These are some of the issue that impact the speed of your Powerline Adapter.

  1. The age of the electrical wiring in your home - older wiring can reduce the stability of the signal as it travels round your home.
  2. Small fluctuations in the mains electrical supply can disrupt the signal.
  3. Interference from other devices such as phone charges, hair dryers, vacuum cleaners, or microwaves.
  4. Use of extension cables can affect the signal strength.

Despite these issues, it's worth remembering that even if you only achieve 60% of the maximum speed, that is still likely to be a whole lot faster than your current WiFi speeds. In fact in tests, such as these carried out by PC Advisor, a Poweline Adapter can boost your internet speed by up to 300% compared to a Wi-Fi only device in a room some distance from the router! You can see a list of which devices are widely considered the best Powerline adapters.

Wi-Fi Signal Loss
Wi-Fi signal reduces with distance from the router, interference and physical barriers.

As a general rule of thumb, go for the fastest Powerline adapter you can. Whilst a cheaper 200Mbps adapter might be ok for web normal browsing it will struggle under the weight of a streaming movie or online game. Aim for a faster 500 or 600 Mbps Powerline adapter with the Gigabit Ethernet standard (up to 1,000Mbps) to get the fastest possible experience on your devices at home.

What is the average speed I could expect from a powerline adapter?

The average speed you could expect from a Powerline adapter can vary widely depending on several factors such as the electrical wiring in your home/building, the number of Powerline devices in use, the quality and type of Powerline adapter, and the distance between devices.

Typically, Powerline adapter speeds can range from 500 Mbps to 2000 Mbps, but actual speeds can be lower. The speed of a Powerline adapter will also depend on the maximum potential speed of the specific Powerline adapter you are using.

What is the average WiFi speed in the UK

The average Wi-Fi speed in the UK can vary widely depending on several factors such as location, internet service provider (ISP), the type of Wi-Fi router being used, and the number of people using the network.

According to recent studies, the average broadband speed in the UK is around 63 Mbps. However, Wi-Fi speeds can be slower due to factors such as distance from the router, interference from other devices, and the age and quality of the router. As a result, the average Wi-Fi speed in the UK can range from around 10 Mbps to 50 Mbps, but actual speeds can be lower or higher depending on the specific circumstances.

So, it is safe to say that you can expect to get *much* faster internet using a Powerline Adapter over using Wi-Fi. It is, however, best to check the specifications of the Powerline adapter you are using to determine its maximum potential speed and to expect actual speeds that may be lower due to real-world conditions.

Below are some of the fastest Powerline Adapters available today, and some ideas of what you could pay.

Fastest Powerline Adapters

Devolo Magic 2-2400

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Devolo dLAN 1200

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TP-Link TL-WPA4220

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Alternatively, here are some the latest models

  • TP-Link AV1000: A fast and reliable option with speeds up to 1000Mbps.
  • Netgear PL1200: A versatile and competitively priced, adapter with multiple Ethernet ports and support for Homeplug AV2 technology.
  • Devolo dLAN 1200+: A high-performance adapter with speeds up to 1200Mbps and a compact design.
  • Zyxel AV2000: A budget-friendly option with speeds up to 2000Mbps and a compact design.

Whatever device you go for, here are some tips on buying the best Powerline Adapter.





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