Anyone remember when a home network was a simple and primitive thing? How about the first wireless network? I can remember when all I wanted to do was get e-mail, print and browse the internet. Now we all need to stream movies, audio, share files (iTunes sharing anyone?) print, save to NAS devices and sometimes much more! Our home networks are getting as cluttered with traffic as a business one. In many ways they are even more cluttered.
So what do you do when you want to push data out to a far corner of your house? Or you want to stream that 1080p MKV file from your new Windows Home Server? You may think "Wireless to the rescue!" - But unfortunately wireless has a wide delta for performance. You can often watch your connection speed jump up and down during the day. This makes it unreliable for HD video streams and in many cases even 802.11n cannot cut it.
Of course, running Cat 5 cable all over your house is not something you want to consider either. Well, there is an answer! This is a Powerline adapter. With a pair of these you can push Ethernet data over your home power lines. The data is encrypted over the line and decrypted at the opposite end, so security is fairly good. Plus you get a consistent 100Mbps in full duplex (meaning 100 up / 100 down for a 200Mbps rating). This is about twice what you need to get good 1080p streaming. So with that in mind, let's dive in and look at NETGEAR's Powerline AV 200 Adapter Kit. At $119 from Newegg.com we want to see if this is a good deal for people that can't use wireless or want something a little more consistent for their HD video streaming.