Can you hear me now? How about now? Can you hear me now? Nevermind, I’ll just write it. Who even talks on the phone anymore? People use their phones for way more than that these days. And for most of those tasks, you need reliable wi-fi.
The point of having a mobile phone and a laptop and mobile internet is freedom, right? Being able to go wherever you want and stay connected, right? What’s the point if your signal doesn’t extend far enough? That limits your freedom.
Many areas in the world are still not equipped with wireless capabilities and there are still many discrepancies across networks, limiting signals sometimes as far as even just going outdoors to your backyard or the signal not even extending to another floor.
How do you take matters into your own hands? This article has a solution! Read ahead, wireless friend.
Fun Facts First
Haven’t you always wondered what wi-fi means? What does it stand for? The ‘wi’ is pretty obvious – it’s short for wireless. Anybody can guess that. But the ‘fi’? What the heck is that short for?
One obvious guess would be fidelity, a term normally associated with speakers and vinyls. It does not stand for fidelity.
Another guess might be fibers. Good guess. That would be wrong too. Fiber is what high-speed cables are made of and that’s not wireless.
Basically, it means nothing. It’s a term attached by a marketing agency, selected from a menu of ten choices.
That’s actually because the clinical term for wi-fi is ‘‘IEEE 802.11b Direct Sequence’. Not as catchy. Even more interesting, the common wisdom is that wi-fi is the internet. It’s not. It’s a very advanced digital radio frequency, which operates on the electromagnetic spectrum, much like a microwave. This frequency delivers the internet to you.
What Is Long Range?
Wouldn’t you like to know? That’s why you’re reading this after all, right? Here is an explanation.
A long-range wifi extender is a device, of course. This device captures the wi-fi signal and then broadcasts it beyond the borders of the signal. This eliminates the dead zones of connectivity in areas both outdoor and indoor and increases coverage.
Essentially when using a wifi extender, you are building your own little personal cellular tower, by placing antennas around your house to carry the signal through obstructions.
Why Would You Want a Long-Range Outdoor WiFi Extender?
The benefits of having long-range outdoor wifi extenders are multitudinous and render them quite useful. The benefits include:
- They are a breeze to set up and operate
- They are built to survive all sorts of weather conditions
- Extends your range and gives you better signal in areas not nearby the modem or router.
- You can use them to charge your other devices
- Built-in antennas improve their function and performance
What Are The Different Types Of Extenders?
There are five types of wifi extenders. It’s up to you to decide which type is most appropriate for your needs. Here’s an easy to reference list, in alphabetical order:
- Antenna – the most common type, they can be wired or wireless. They are reliable and cover a large area.
- Access Points – Also known as CPE’s, which stands for Customer Premises Equipments and are a dinosaur. They usually require additional installation by your provider.
- Boosters – a little more expensive. They have more long term advantages as they build up your overall wireless network capability strength. Stronger than repeaters.
- Repeaters – are more direct, sending the signal to one specific spot. They can offer excellent performance, but grow weaker over time. They have a bit of a bad rep.
- Wired – Yes, wired is an option. Wired extenders are the most reliable, but also the most potentially cumbersome.
Them Features Is Basic!
What basic features should you look for in an extender? What are the different factors that are worth considering? Here are your answers to these deep questions.
- Installation and ease of use
- Your specific purpose for the extender
- The distance you are trying to cover
Think about whether the extender is for business or pleasure. Know that you will get what you pay for. Also, if you frequently do business in multiple states, you will want a more well-known brand that everyone will recognize across various regions.
Terms You Should Know
Here are some terms that will help you be better informed when you hit the market so you can ask the right questions and look to fulfill the needs that satisfy you most. Once more, in alphabetical order:
- Antenna – The antenna functions as a ‘signal gateway’. Consider the dBis of the antenna. The higher the dBi, the more distance it covers. Anything less than 4 dBis will not be sufficient.
- Band Compatibility – The internet runs on two band compatibilities. One covers more area, while the other has faster data transmission. Choose accordingly. It should be compatible with whatever band your modem or router works on. There are also extenders available which run on both bands.
- Coverage Range – This is entirely up to you. There is no standard, just the consideration of if it is for a smaller area, such as home or office, as opposed to covering an entire school, for example.
- PoE – This stands for Power over Ethernet. If an extender is PoE, that means it possesses alternate options for the power source, besides a standard outlet. This can be advantageous.
- RF Power – This refers to the Radio Frequency on which the extender operates. Or in other words, it’s amplification capabilities. To determine the RF Power, note the mill watt and decibel milliwatt specs. Anything less than 15dbm and 250mw will not be sufficient.
The List You Have Been Waiting For…
Finally, you are equipped with the knowledge to determine which wireless extender will meet your needs. Now the list you came here for, the Top 5 best long-range outdoor wifi extenders!
BEARIFI BEAREXTENDER WI-FI EXTENDER
The best part of the Bearifi long-range outdoor wifi extender are its anti-dust and anti-corrosion features, making it ideal for outdoor use.
- Waterproof finish
- Mounting options
- Not compatible with Android or IOS
- Cannot be used as a router
- TYPE: Antenna
- SPEED: 600 mbps
- COVERAGE: 200 to 300 feet
- WEIGHT: 1.48 ibs.
This access point extender is built for outside use. It can even be reset remotely! It has mode settings that allow it to work as an AP router or repeater. This device succeeds even through metal buildings.
- Long-Range Reach
- Excellent Company
- Great Price
- Adjustable Transmission Power
- Reliable connection
- Weatherproof design
- Requires ethernet port on a computer for setup
- TYPE: Access Point
- SPEED: 300 mbps
- COVERAGE: 200 feet
- WEIGHT: 1.65 ib
GALAWAY WIFI RANGE EXTENDER
Another extender ideal for outdoor use, thanks to the waterproof IP65 and ABS casing. It also comes equipped with an omnidirectional antenna for broader coverage.
- LED buttons
- No lag during high speed streaming
- Stable connections in difficult conditions
- Dual band for uninterrupted signals
- Challenging Installation procedure
- TYPE: Booster
- SPEED: 600 mbps
- COVERAGE: 5000 feet – yup, 5000 feet!
- WEIGHT: 1.28 ib
WINEGARD RW 2035 EXTREME OUTDOOR WIFI EXTENDER
Yes, extreme! This model has not one, not two, but three omnidirectional antennas! The technology used in this model is highly advanced and it sports high-performance amplifiers! Installation is a piece of cake. It literally lets you transplant your online surfing experience into the great outdoors!
- Simple, one time installation
- Easily connected to a PoE
- Three high gain detachable 5 dBi antennas
- Can cover large, crowded areas
- Broadcasts signal up to a 1000 feet
- Gaming and streaming without a lag
- Ethernet connection required for set up
- TYPE: Booster
- SPEED: 450 to 600 mbps
- COVERAGE: 1000 feet
- WEIGHT: 3.5 ib
NETGEAR ORBI ULTRA PERFORMANCE WHOLE HOME MESH WI0FI SYSTEM
One of the best-reviewed long-range outdoor wifi extenders on the market! Mesh systems mirror the main router. Its weather design system is IP66 rated and the tri-band technology is award-winning. This system has plenty of pros, listed below:
- Can connect to one system
- Utilizes same SSID and password
- Outdoor accessibility
- Approves home connection as well
- Seamless moving from indoors to outdoors
- Award-winning brand
- 5000 square feet coverage
- Parental controls, guest network and app included
- Built-in antivirus and theft protection
- High Bandwidth
- Two satellites boosting speed and coverage
- Award-winning brand
- Stellar reviews
- A little more expensive
- Some reported firmware problems
- Long wait times for tech support
- Connection dependent on proper installation
- Premium version costs extra
- TYPE: Whole Mesh System
- SPEED: 3 gbps
- COVERAGE: up to 5,000 feet
- WEIGHT: 3.92 ib
All The Coverage You Need
Well, that about covers it all, no pun intended.
These five long-range outdoor wifi extenders can all be used in difficult weather conditions. Finally, here are some suggestions as to where to plug in your new wi-fi extender for maximum performance and minimum hassle!
- As close to the outside area as you will be
- In areas where the signal lags
- By the backdoor
- In the garage
- Weatherproof box for outdoor electronics
- A secure location (from weather conditions)
- Connected to the router or modem
- In your outdoor office
- On the roof, depending on the antenna type
Now that you’ve extended your wifi signal, enjoy extending your mind on the world wide web!