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Wi-Fi Router Charts

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Mesh System Charts

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Closing Thoughts

As I have with every other Wi-Fi range extension product, I have mixed feelings about the AP 200, but end up more positive tha usual. On the plus side, it's a lot easier to deal with than WDS-based solutions, including the notoriously difficult Linksys WRE54G [reviewed].

Setup is more like dealing with a typical wireless router, except that the WAN side setup is more like connecting up a typical wireless client. Throughput is also pretty consistent, although variation can get quite significant depending on placement and signal path.

Once you set it up, the AP 200 is very good at staying connected and automatically reconnecting when you move it. I didn't have to log into the admin interface once after the initial configuration, during all of my location testing. I just waited until the signal bar display stopped scanning back and forth and locked into a steady signal level indication.

The main downside is the throughput loss due to the single-radio configuration. This limits the AP 200's use to lower-bandwidth applications, such as the web-surfing that the product is named after. If you have a typical cable or DSL Internet connection, you'll probably be happy with the throughput the product provides.

But if you're counting on doing large local file transfers or hi-def streaming, you may be disappointed. That said, you'll probably do ok with standard-def or Slingbox video streams as long as you're doing only one or two.

All things considered, if you're willing to spend the $129 (plus shipping) that PePwave is asking for the product (it's available only direct from them) to wirelessly reach that spot that just won't yield to other things you've tried, I say go for it. In my case, I now can get a nice wireless 3-5 Mbps Slingbox stream in my "Wi-Fi black hole" and untether my kitchen laptop.

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