Good WiFi reception is a challenge in larger or more complex apartments. Mesh systems are designed to fix that. Stiftung Warentest shows which ones really succeed.
Everyone knows these corners in the house or apartment where the WiFi just doesn’t want to get to. The solution is an extension of the network, preferably with a modern mesh system. But not all of them work the same way, according to a test by Stiftung Warentest: only half of the tested mesh solutions are good.
Mesh networks are a type of intelligent network. The network does not come from a single router, but is spanned from several nodes. The special feature: It is not the connected devices that decide which of them you control. Instead, the mesh system decides which would be best suited now. And actively passes the connection on. This makes them more reliable than repeaters, where the devices first have to switch themselves.
The best mesh system is none at all
The best overall grade in the test is still for two repeaters: the Fritzrepeater 1200 AX and the Fritzrepeater 6000 both achieve the rating “good” (2.0) and thus share first place. As the name suggests, both can also be used as classic repeaters, but in connection with a suitable Fritzbox they can also set up a mesh network. The data transmission is just as good as in the rest of the test field, as the goods test measurements show. The Fritz repeater 6000 is even one of the best in the test field.
The fact that it gets the same overall grade as the considerably cheaper 1200 AX despite better performance is due to the relatively high power consumption. For most Fritz users, the smaller model is more attractive anyway: you can get two of the 1200 AX repeaters from 160 euros, which is not even enough for a 6000 series. For the one pays at least 230 euros per station. Both models also need a router. You can find good models in this test.
Complete sets are also convincing
If you don’t have a router or you have an outdated router, you should look at the complete sets instead. The test winner, the Orbi AX 1800 from the manufacturer Netgear, not only convinces with consistently good marks for the network, handling and security. With its simple design, it also makes a good impression. The overall rating: “good” (2.1). The price from 220 euros includes a base station that can be used as a router and two satellites.
However, Warentest was less convinced of the manufacturer’s more expensive model, the Orbi AX4200. The WLAN was one of the best in the test. Because the mesh system consumed too much electricity, the product testers devalued it. The overall result “satisfactory” (2.7) is disappointing in view of the price from 600 euros.
A good alternative is the Asus Zenwifi AX Mini XD4. This system also largely convinced the testers, a small drawback is the slightly weaker WiFi. But it scores in terms of handling and power consumption. “Good” (2.3) judges Warentest. The price from 220 euros is fine.
You can find the complete test for a fee at test.de.
This article contains so-called affiliate links. Further information are available here.