technology

TP-Link RE700X review: a lightning-fast WiFi 6 repeater

The TP-Link RE700X is a repeater without external antennas measuring 14.9 cm high. Due to the lack of a female socket, it condemns an electrical outlet when plugged in. Once housed in the socket, it protrudes 4.5 cm and occupies 7.8 cm in width.

The RE700X is relatively discreet, but it condemns an electrical outlet.

© The Digital

Its contained weight of 262 g allows it to be properly maintained despite the use of a type-C (phase-neutral) socket. It will at least have the advantage of being oriented either upside down or upside down, depending on your choice.

tp-link RE700x

A Gigabit socket, a WPS button and the reset are on the right edge.

© The Digital

The RE700X is equipped with an RJ45 socket to the Gigabit standard. In repeater mode, it acts as network access for a device, while in access point mode, it is the source of the network.

Just above, a WPS button allows you to pair your devices, while the reset button is hidden still above.

The front has four blue LEDs to show the status of the repeater, the quality of the connection with the signal it repeats and the status of the 2.4 and 5 GHz frequency bands.

tp-link RE700X

The four indicator lights can turn off at night or be disabled.

© The Digital

On the wifi side, the TP-Link supports the 802.11ax standard (wifi 6) on two frequency bands, 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz, with a speed of 574 Mb / s and 2402 Mb / s on the second. In theory, the RE700x should therefore send high speed, even if, remember, the theoretical figure is halved since it communicates with both the source (router / internet box) and the connected device.

Editor's Rating: 3 out of 5

Ergonomics

Installation of the TP-Link RE700X repeater can be done in two ways. Via the Android/iOS application called Tether, or directly in the repeater’s web interface available at tplinkrepeater.net. In both cases, you must first plug the repeater into an outlet near the box or router whose network you want to extend.

setup tp-link RE700X installation

Installing the RE700X takes just 10 minutes.

© The Digital

Once the power-on light stops flashing, you can connect to the newly created wifi network (TP-Link_Extender) and follow the installation guide in the app, which will ask you for the credentials of the network you are extending , and will create two new SSIDs: 2.4G_EXT networkname and 5G_EXT networkname. When the configuration is complete, you can disconnect your repeater to place it halfway between your internet box and the area to be covered, the application indicating whether you have positioned the device correctly. Good to know, if you have a TP-Link router with the One Mesh function, the repeater will pick up the router’s SSIDs and manage the roaming of your devices automatically.

android app RE700X tp-link

The application allows to control all the parameters of the repeater.

© The Digital

The application then makes it possible to completely dispense with the web administration interface. It is thus possible to access all of the repeater parameters, to configure the lighting of the indicator lights and even to define a time slot for use.

No parental control is on the menu, since this task generally falls to the router or the internet box; a parental control only on the wifi network of the repeater would not make sense. However, it is possible to exclude devices or define time slots for them.

webmin TP-Link RE700x

The web administration interface groups together all the application settings.

© The Digital

Editor's Rating: 5 out of 5

Debits

To evaluate the performance of TP-Link’s repeater, we repeated the 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz signals from a Netgear RAX200 router to which we connected a laptop PC via an adapter to the 2.5 Gb/s jack. In order to measure the speeds, we transferred a file (a disk image) of 4.73 GB from the first laptop to a second equipped with an Intel AX210 wifi 6 chip, but also to a fixed desktop PC upstairs. connected with a PCIe Gigabyte GC-WBAX200 card. The latter was also equipped with the Intel AX210 chip, but with an external antenna.

The router is positioned at an angle of the housing, the repeater plugged almost in the middle of the latter, on a socket 15 cm from the ground. We perform a first measurement with the repeater near the router (point 1), a measurement 1 m from the repeater placed in the middle of the dwelling (point 2), another in a room about 5 m from the repeater with a load-bearing wall at opposite the router (point 3), another measurement on the fixed PC upstairs through a concrete floor (point 4), and a last one upstairs as well, but above the first bedroom where the router speeds are the lowest (point 5).

bandwith debit RE700X TP-link

Rates recorded on the 5 GHz frequency band.

© The Digital

Performance on the 5 GHz frequency band is simply the highest we’ve measured on a repeater. Thus, at the closest, we reach 610 Mb / s in download and 531 Mb / s in upload. Once installed in its socket to cover our accommodation, we obtain almost 400 Mb / s, whether in download or upload.

Even at the furthest measurement point (point 5), the RE700X outperforms the competition with 323 Mb/s download and 219 Mb/s upload.

debit bandwidth tp-link RE700x

Rates recorded on the 2.4 GHz frequency band.

© The Digital

On the 2.4 GHz frequency band, with its 574 Mb/s, the RE700X has nothing to be ashamed of either. It thus flirts happily with 300 Mb/s, whatever the measurement point in the home, with the exception of the furthest point. On this last point, the RE700X still displays 225 Mb/s in download and 142 Mb/s in upload.

As long as you are already equipped with a wifi 6 internet box or a high-performance router capable of supplying bandwidth to the RE700X, the latter will not fail you. Thus, the RE700X coupled with a good router will perform better than some more expensive mesh wifi 6 kits.

Strong points

  • Simple installation and configuration.

  • Excellent flow rates.

Weak points

  • No female socket.

  • Mesh limited to TP-Link devices.

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