The Benefits of an Ethernet Extender

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A single fiber optic cable is capable of carrying a signal for approximately 60 miles before a repeater is needed to amplify the signal. Standard Ethernet cables, though, are not nearly so efficient. In most cases, an Ethernet cable can transmit a signal about 100 meters before you run into issues. This situation is where Ethernet extenders come into the equation.

What are the benefits of using an Ethernet extender?

The top benefits that Ethernet extenders provide are:

  • Increasing network range
  • Eliminates the need for costly fiber optic runs, wireless access points, or other networking solutions
  • Simple and easy to set up
  • Uses your existing Ethernet cable run

This article will explore these benefits further and cover everything you need to know about using an Ethernet extender.

How does an Ethernet Extender Work?

A single-pair high-speed digital subscriber line (SHDL), coaxial, or fiber optic cable between a pair of Ethernet extenders will allow 10/100Base-TX networks to transmit Ethernet data up to 20 kilometers rather than the standard range of 100 meters. In addition, two Ethernet extenders can also utilize a very high-speed digital subscriber line (VDSL) to extend the range of 10/100/1000Base-T networks up to 3 kilometers.
Setting up and configuring Ethernet extenders is quick and straightforward, thanks to their plug-and-play configuration. To use an Ethernet extender, simply connect one end of the Ethernet cable to your router or computer’s connection hub, then connect the other end to your Ethernet extender. The final step is to connect each extender and the router or hub to a power source and then start enjoying the benefits of a dramatically boosted network range.
This quick and easy setup process, combined with the affordability of Ethernet extenders, makes these devices an ideal solution for anyone who wants to extend the range of their network without breaking the bank.

Types of Ethernet Extenders

Depending on your exact needs and applications, numerous types of Ethernet extenders exist. Westward Sales offers an extensive catalog of high-quality Ethernet extenders from top manufacturers such as Patton Electronics, Antaira Technologies, and Black Box. To help you choose a suitable extender for your application, here are the different types of Ethernet extenders and what they are used for:

  • Ethernet over UTP extenders: The most common type of Ethernet extenders, UTP Ethernet extenders are available as both managed and unmanaged, multi-port and single-port devices and are used to extend the range of networks using UTP Ethernet cables.
  • Ethernet over coax (EoC) extenders: EoC extenders boost the range of Ethernet data transmitted via coaxial cables.
  • Power over Ethernet (PoE) extenders: There are specific applications where engineers deliver power to devices using Ethernet cables. With PoE extenders, you can extend the standard 100-meter range for power over Ethernet up to a little over 1,000 meters.
  • Wi-Fi Extenders: Wi-Fi extenders work to duplicate and rebroadcast the Wi-Fi network they are connected to, extending the area the signal covers.
  • Industrial Ethernet Extenders: Industrial Ethernet extenders are more durable versions designed to operate in harsh environments. The Ethernet extender types above are available as industrial models offering solid protection and an extended temperature range.
Patton CopperLink CL1212E Industrial Fast Ethernet Extender

Factors to Consider When Choosing an Ethernet Extender

Along with choosing the type of extender best suited for your specific application are several other important considerations. The top factors include the following:

Bandwidth

Bandwidth presents a bit of a catch-22 situation when extending network range via an Ethernet extender; the higher your network’s bandwidth range is, the shorter you will be able to extend its range with an Ethernet extender. Ethernet extenders are designed for networks ranging in bandwidth from 10 to 100 Mbps. Therefore, it is necessary first to verify that you can extend your network to your desired range based on your network bandwidth before choosing an extender designed for that bandwidth.

Cabling

As discussed, Ethernet extenders can be used with numerous Ethernet cables, including UTP and coaxial cables. Therefore, when selecting an Ethernet extender, it is essential to ensure it is compatible with the Ethernet cables you will be using.

Operating Conditions

If you install an Ethernet extender in harsh outdoor conditions, humid environments, high temperatures, or areas exposed to corrosive chemicals, it is vital to choose an extender durable enough to stand up to the punishment. An industrial Ethernet extender designed for these harsh conditions is the best choice to get as much life out of your investment as possible. However, even if you use your Ethernet in typical operating conditions, choosing a rugged and reliable extender from a trusted manufacturer is still critical.

Compatibility and Security

Along with choosing an Ethernet extender compatible with your network’s bandwidth and cabling type, it is also essential to ensure compatibility with other network infrastructure elements. Network security is also an important consideration to keep in mind. Choose an extender that utilizes existing authorization schemes such as TACACS+, RADIUS, LDAP, Kerberos, NIS, or RSA.

Contact Westward Sales Today for Help Choosing the Ideal Ethernet Extender

At Westward sales, we are proud to offer a wide range of industry-leading Ethernet extenders designed for an equally wide range of applications. So if you want a simple and affordable way to extend your network range, an Ethernet extender from a top manufacturer such as Patton, Antara, and Black Box is an ideal solution!

For help choosing the best Ethernet extender, contact Westward Sales today! A friendly and knowledgeable customer service representative is happy to answer questions and help determine the best extender for your needs.

Written by

Kelvin Aist is Founder and Sales Manager at Westward Sales. He has designed and sold networking and communication solutions his entire career. He frequently blogs for Westward Sales.

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