Thursday, August 14, 2014

Product Review: D-Link 1360 Wireless Access Point

We recently moved into a new place, which is quite a bit bigger than our previous place, and our study is on the one end of the house, and our main bedroom on the opposite end. My ADSL router's wireless just doesn't reach our bedroom, and I decided to remedy that by getting the D-Link 1360 Access Point, specifically to use as a wireless signal repeater, which according to their website it can do.

It cost just over R400 here in South Africa, which is around $35-$40 for those interested... Anyway, I opened the box, which has a very short network cable, the power supply, a manual (with 3 pages of English) and the two antennas.

According to the manual, you should connect it via the LAN cable to your PC to do the initial setup - you then access the device by either going to http://dlinkap or - doing that for the first time allows you to do the setup for it - you can select from 3 options - one of which is Wireless repeater, which supposedly boosts an existing wifi signal - the sole reason I bought the device.

I used the manual setup option, and it found my existing wireless SSID without a problem, and I entered my password, and the device rebooted.

The first time, it worked ok. Rebooting takes a good few minutes, and after that, my PC connected to my network via the device wirelessly, so I assumed that it is working.

I powered down the device, and moved it to the living room, which is in the middle of the house, and our bedroom is one room over. Switched it on, and it looked like my phone connected to it without a problem, and it actually worked fine in our bedroom - full signal strength. I was impressed. "Was" is the word I want to put my emphasis on in that sentence. When we turned in for the night, I wanted to connect again, but nothing. It kept saying "obtaining IP address" and just didn't get passed that. It did eventually connect to the wireless network, but I couldn't access the internet, and my Note 3 just kept on saying "your internet connection is unstable". The iPad also connected eventually, but didn't work.

I was tired of struggling with the thing, so I went to sleep, hoping I could figure out the next morning. Once again I tried everything. Rebooting, resetting and setting it up again. It's just not working as it should.

I didn't try to use it as an access point or so, but as a wireless repeater it sucks. It's a useless device, and it seems many other on the internet experiences the same issues (serves me right for not properly researching it before buying).

And I thought the fact that my ADSL router is also a D-Link device would make the two "more compatible" with each other, but no such luck. I even tried updating the firmware from D-Link's site - but my device's version is F1, and they only have options on their site for A, B and C.

So, if you plan on buying the D-Link DAP-1360 to use as a wireless range extender, don't. It doesn't work, even with a lot of fiddling. I'm returning mine.

As for a score, since it is not doing what I want it to, a cool 2/10 (the 2 points was pure generosity from my part, it worked for a few minutes at first...)

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