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Today’s Show:

ZyXEL 500 Mb/s Fast Ethernet Powerline Wall-Plug Adapter

Just about everything we add to our home theaters need an Internet connection. Sure you can use WiFi but nothing beats a hardwired connection. If you have an older home it may be difficult to string wire yourself or costly to hire someone to do it for you. One option that is dead simple and as easy as plugging a device into a socket is Ethernet over Powerlines. We have reviewed many over the years but as technology improves we like to test newer products to see if data rates are getting faster. On this episode we take a look at the ZyXEL 500 Mb/s Fast Ethernet Powerline Wall-Plug Adapter. (Buy Now $75)


  • Backward compatible with Home Plug AV 200 Mbps
  • Easy to use Plug and Play device
  • QoS ensures uninterrupted multimedia streaming
  • Power-saving mode reduces energy waste
  • Multi-color LED identifies power line network quality
  • Embedded noise filter for reduced power interference
  • Encrypt button for easy security setup
  • Fast Ethernet for real throughput of up to 100Mbps


As we stated before setup was trivial. We plugged one end into the wall near our router and then connected it to the router via an Ethernet cable. The other unit was plugged into a socket somewhere else in the house and then connected to the device requiring a network connection via another Ethernet cable. That’s it!


The label on the box says 500 Mbp/s and in a perfect world it may actually get that. But in the not so perfect real world, we were able to get 48Mbps on a consistent basis. Will this device eliminate the need to wire your home with Ethernet? The answer is yes and no.

depends on how noisy your powerlines are. If all you are using the network for is watching streaming video and and providing Internet access to your home theater devices, then the answer is yes. If you want to move large files around then the answer is no. Well at least at Ara’s house.


Ara wanted to extend his wireless signal to his garage so he could watch his Slingbox while he was working out. In this case it worked great! The Slingbox maxes out at 8Mbps far less than the 48Mbps being provided by the ZyXEL. And since Ara added an Apple Airport Express he took his speakers off his workbench and mounted them to the cross beam running through his garage. Look for a video in a couple of weeks. It turned out better than he hoped!


Download Episode #596

Posted by The HT Guys, August 15, 2013 11:57 PM

About The HT Guys

The HT Guys, Ara Derderian and Braden Russell, are Engineers who formerly worked for the Advanced Digital Systems Group (ADSG) of Sony Pictures Entertainment. ADSG was the R&D unit of the sound department producing products for movie theaters and movie studios.

Two of the products they worked on include the DCP-1000 and DADR-5000. The DCP is a digital cinema processor used in movie theaters around the world. The DADR-5000 is a disk-based audio dubber used on Hollywood sound stages.

ADSG was awarded a Technical Academy Award by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences in 2000 for the development of the DADR-5000. Ara holds three patents for his development work in Digital Cinema and Digital Audio Recording.

Every week they put together a podcast about High Definition TV and Home Theater. Each episode brings news from the A/V world, helpful product reviews and insights and help in demystifying and simplifying HDTV and home theater.