TP-Link TL-PA8030P KITTechHive Rating
It’s not the fastest HomePlug kit on the market, but TP-Link’s TL-PA8030P delivers reasonable HomePlug AV2 MIMO performance and lets you connect up to three devices to a single adapter. That makes it a...
Powerline networking shines at streaming media applications, but most HomePlug adapters support only one network device, and today’s home entertainment centers may have two, three, or more. The TP-Link TL-PA8030P KIT addresses the issue with a pair of high-performance HomePlug AV2 MIMO adapters that have three ethernet ports instead of the usual one.
Of course, you could also simply connect a single-port adapter to an ethernet switch with four or more ports (I use a 16-port hub in my own media center). But if you only have two or three devices to connect—a media streamer, a video-game console, and a Blu-ray Disc player, for instance—the TP-Link TL-PA8030P is a simpler (and at $100, perhaps cheaper) solution than a single-port adapter and a switch.
TP-Link’s three-port adapters also provide a pass-through electrical outlet, so you don’t lose the use of the outlet you’ve plugged the TP-Link into. That’s fortunate, since this adapter is among the bulkiest we’ve seen, and make connecting a plug into the second port of a typical wall outlet all but impossible.
TP-Link also gets kudos for providing 6.5-foot ethernet cables, longer than most we’ve seen in HomePlug AV2 MIMO kits lately. Longer cables give you greater flexibility in positioning network devices vis a vis the outlet the adapter plugs into. TP-Link provides only one cord for each adapter, so you’ll need to provide your own to use the second and third ethernet ports.
The TL-PA8030P kit is not particularly fast compared to other HomePlug AV2 MIMO adapters. Its 200 megabit-per-second average in our JPerf throughput tests was solid for AV2 MIMO gear based on chips that operate on the 2-to 68MHz frequency of electrical wiring, it fell far short of the 300-plus mbps speeds we’ve seen with competitors based on chips that use the full 2- to 86MHz spectrum the standard supports.
Advocates of using the narrower frequency range, on the other hand, claim that practice will deliver more consistent performance in environments with more electrical noise—say, a home with older wiring than that of my 1996-era loft.
Bottom line: the TP-Link TL-PA8030P Kit’s three-ethernet port configuration makes it worth considering for a small household where multiple simultaneous users won’t need the fastest gear available, with a home entertainment center that has two or three network devices. That may be a pretty good-sized niche.
This story, "TP-Link TL-PA8030P KIT AV1200 Powerline Kit review: This powerline adapter kit has three Ethernet ports." was originally published by TechHive.
TP-Link TL-PA8030P KITTechHive Rating
It’s not the fastest HomePlug kit on the market, but TP-Link’s TL-PA8030P delivers reasonable HomePlug AV2 MIMO performance and lets you connect up to three devices to a single adapter. That makes it a good candidate for use in a small home entertainment center.
- Three one-gigabit ethernet ports
- Passthrough electrical outlet
- Modest price for adapters that support three network devices
- Not the fastest HomePlug AV2 MIMO gear available
- Bulky adapters preclude use of second receptacle in a typical wall outlet
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