How do you get network access in remote parts of the house that your Wi-Fi won’t quite reach? Perhaps, like me, you have a workshop or garage outside that you want to be connected to your home network, but Wi-Fi won’t work and you don’t need the hassle of running Ethernet cable. As long as the power is fed to the building from your house the Tenda P1002P Av1000 Gigabit Powerline Adapter could be answer.
The kit comes with two adapters – one you plug into your router or switch and a power outlet close by, and the other adapter gets plugged in where you need the connection. The power lines provide the wired network connection. Sounds very easy, let’s give it a try to see how it does.
What’s in the Box?
The adapter kit’s outer box is made of a thin cardboard the thickness of card stock. The front of the box has a picture of the two adapters contained inside, and pictures showing five of the features of the Tenda P1002P Av1000 Gigabit Powerline Adapter.
The back of the box has a good description of what the device is intended for and a diagram to show how you would use it in your home or office. Also there is a very brief product description in 8 languages.
The right side if the box shows you how to connect the Tenda P1002P Av1000 Gigabit Powerline Adapter at each end of the network. On the left side you will find the package contents list, another feature list plus an Email address for Tech Support. There is no support phone number listed on the outside of the box – we will see if there is one inside.
You open the box by lifting out the flap on either end and sliding out the inner box. The inner box is much heavier and this is where the strength in the packaging comes from. Inside you will see the two Tenda P1002P Av1000 Gigabit Powerline Adapters sitting on top. The adapters are covered in a clear plastic film to protect them from getting scuffed up during shipping – the ones I received arrived in perfect condition.
After lifting out the two adapters you will need to remove the inner tray. Under this tray you will find two three foot Ethernet cables, and a single piece of paper which constitutes the instruction manual. I would rate the experience of opening the package to be about average, no negatives but nothing to get excited about either.
- 2 Tenda P1002P Av1000 Gigabit Powerline Adapters
- 2 Ethernet cables 3ft long
- 1 Very brief instruction manual
Tenda quotes its P1002P Av1000 Gigabit Powerline Adapter can provide up to 1 Gbps network speeds at up to 300 meters (this should help me get network access in my shop which is about 100 meters away from the house). It provides a noise filtered pass-through power outlet. It is also compliant with HomePlug AV2 and IEEE 1901, and downward compatible with AV Standard. The power consumption while resting is only 0.5 watts which should add very little to the monthly electric bill. The product claims to be plug and play requiring no configuration or software to install. If you are concerned about security the adapters are equipped with 128 bit AES encryption – you pair the devices by simply pushing a button on each adapter. QoS and IGMP managed multicast transmission features are also included to optimize IPTV streaming.
The adapters appear to be very well made. All of the parts fit together very well, with no signs of any rough edges or gaps in seams. The construction is very solid and should hold up well. On the front you will see the pass-through power outlet at the top, the Tenda Logo at the bottom, and three LEDs on the lower right side of each adapter.
The indicators will show that they are powered on, that the powerline connection has been made, and that there is a network connection between the adapters. Alongside the power pins, the rear of the adapters includes a note of the MAC address, serial number and DPW Number. On the bottom of each adapter there are two 1000 Mbps Ethernet ports. The three other sides are very well ventilated so any heat produced should easily dissipate. Finally on the left side you will find the 128-bit encryption reset and pairing button.
Getting Up and Running
It was amazing how easy it was to get the Tenda P1002P Av1000 Gigabit Powerline Adapter kit up and running. I plugged one adapter into my main switch, and plugged the other into an outlet in my barn connected to a notebook. All I had to do was push the pairing button on the one in the house, then the one in the barn and I was connected. It was that simple. Using these adapters is a no brainer, anyone will be able to use them right out of the box.
When you first plug them in you will see the top LED light turn on, when you push the pairing button the second light will blink, when you plug in the second adapter the same thing will happen, however when you push the pairing button they will pair and the second light will be on solid. Once you connect the Ethernet cable you will see the third light blinking to the traffic passing through. You should see this on both adapters. One aspect I didn’t like was the fact that the adapter is large enough that it takes up both power outlets. If the male plug was just an 1/8th of an inch closer to the top it would still allow use of the other outlet and with the pass through outlet, you would still have two available to use.
I was able to get a pretty solid transfer rate, but nowhere near the advertised 1 Gbps speed. Using the PassMark Advanced Network Test Tool, I tested the adapters a few feet apart, and about 300 ft apart and got the same 160 Mbps at both distances. The connection was solid and I didn’t notice the connection dropping at all. I have had it running the 300 ft distance for a few days and the connection appears to be rock solid.
Just for grins I checked my hard-wired connection from 1 end of the house to the other, and was getting a very consistent 765 Mbps over Ethernet cable. Obviously, powerline speeds can be easily affected by the quality of your home’s electrical cabling. For my needs, the 160 Mbps I achieved will be satisfactory – I have no complaints.
I found the Tenda P1002P Av1000 Gigabit Powerline Adapter to be very well made, well packaged, and as simple to get up and running as the box advertises. There are a couple of improvement opportunities for Tenda to take a look at. I’d like to see the adapter design enhanced to allow the use of the second wall outlet when the adapter is plugged in. Network speeds also need to be improved if Tenda wishes to get anywhere near the advertised 1 Gbps. Other than these two issues, I think Tenda really did a great job on with the P1002P Av1000 Gigabit Powerline Adapter Kit. I may even pick up another one to place in the other barn.
At $61.99 at Amazon I don’t think you can find a better value.