Powerline networking adaptors, ofton refered to as PLT or PLC devices, are a recent inovation to simplify setting up simple home computer networks. These devices plug into domestic wall sockets and use the house wiring to transmit computer data around the home to another similar device without the need to install ethernet cables or WIFI links.
They connect to the ethernet ports on computer equipment and convert the data into high frequency signals which are then sent along the mains wiring in your home.
They are designed to replace proven and reliable technology such as wired ethernet or WIFI.
However any purchaser should be made to be aware that there are significant problems with this technology!
It is questionable wether this technology is legal as these devices operate at high frequency radio frequencies and when connected to domestic wiring will act as mini transmitters causing widespread interference to radio services, as well as other wireless devices such as keyboards and mice, and in certain circumstances can reduce broadband speed.
Many users of Powerline devices have fallen foul of OFCOM, and have had to remove these devices in favour of wired or wireless solutions.
The legal situation is quite clear, and any device which unintentialy interferes with a legitimate radio use breaks the law, and the person, or company who broaght the device into service is liable, and responsible to ensure non interference when in use.
The CE mark these devices have been given has been gained in a dubiouse manor, and all independent tests by accreditwed test houses show these devices can not pass the legal requirements by a factor of 1000 times. No evedence has been presented by the manufacturers to show compliance.
There are currently legal challenges by users of the radio frequencies affected, which include international broadcast, military, civil aviation, search and rescue, and radio amatures.
These devices do what is claimed by the manufacturers, but due to their widespread disruption and polutuion of radio frequencies there is a stong possibility sometime in the future they may be banned from use.
Please concider wired or wireless solutions before taking the powerline route!
Google "PLT interference" for more information.
Powerline networking adaptors
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29 December 2009
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