The Netgear WN2500RP is a range extender that allows access to WiFi in previously unreachable areas.
As of recent years, WiFi access is quickly becoming a necessity in homes, schools, businesses, and public places. So many devices we rely on in our daily lives require an active Internet connection to properly function. The trouble is, most standard wireless routers have a limited range and thus are not properly able to spread a WiFi network over significant lengths such as between multiple walls or between floors. In order to combat this problem, companies like Netgear have produced WiFi range extenders such as the WN2500RP which boost existing an WiFi connection and extend it's range significantly to allow for greater access from compatible devices.
The Netgear WN2500RP retails for just under $80 (at the time this review was written) and comes packed with an array of excellent features. Most notably it is a WiFi range extender that supports both 2.4GHz and 5GHz bands. The unit also supports up to four wired connections via the Ethernet ports located on the back of the device. The WN2500RP model features built-in ‘FastLane' technology which boosts speeds and performance when handling streaming video and gaming.
The unit is designed to stand upright for use on a desktop or table so it takes up very little space. It balances via two included plastic feet that snap into the bottom of the device and provide a sturdy construction. The build quality is marginal and the product does have a cheap feel to it especially for the expensive price tag.
It is important to place the range extender in the correct position within your home or office in order to achieve optimal performance. To help you choose the right location, Netgear has included dynamic LED indicators on the front of the WN2500RP, which lets you how strong the signal is in real-time.
Setting up the device is a simple and straightforward process which does not require a cd or special installation. The nice thing about the WN2500RP is that it is compatible with virtually any router regardless of make or model. Once you have properly linked the range extender to your traditional router, it will begin amplifying and extending the existing network immediately. The unit will create two new networks off your existing one. For example, my home network is called “Agar Family” therefore the WN2500RP automatically produced “Agar Family_2GEXT” (2.4 GHz) and “Agar Family_5GEXT” (5 GHz) with the same password setup as my existing WiFi.
My main reason for needing this particular Range Extender was to boost by WiFi's signal from the router located on the 2nd floor of my home all the way into the basement. As you can see from the screenshot below, I used to be getting only a 25% signal from the basement as signified by the “Agar Family” network. By utilizing the WN2500RP and adding it in the middle floor of my home, I was able to nearly double my signal level up to 44% and allows for workable Internet speeds.
Before Netgear WN2500RP:
After Netgear WN2500RP:
Sure, the change might not seem amazing to some of you, but it took an area that used to be nearly impossible to receive a reasonable WiFi connection in and boosted it to a level that I am easily able to work in. It also is capable of handling aspects like gaming or streaming video without experiencing any network drops or issues.
Overall, I highly recommend the Netgear WN2500RP range extender to any prospective buyers who can afford the price tag. The unit performed well throughout my testing and has allowed me to transition my office from the top floor of my home into the basement without any network difficulties, something that would have been impossible without the use of this device. If you can't fit this into your budget or do not require the dual band technology, I recommend checking out the Anker Compact WiFi Repeater.