Powerline Adapters - Circuit Advice please


Standard Member
There certainly seems to be a lot of very knowlegeable people on here so i hope someone will be able to give me a definitive answer to my problem.

I'm looking at buying some Comtrend Powerline adapters to use at home to extend my broadband to another PC (don't want to go wireless as I'm electrosensitive).

My house is relatively new and when built they put in separate ring mains upstairs and down - does this mean the adapter will not send a signal from a downstairs powered hub to an upstairs power socket - or does the signal pass through the fuse/distribution board and to the other circuits.

If the latter is the case what is to stop you setting up a receiving adapter in the house next door as I guess the signal would transfer by means of the cables in the road to next door???


Prominent Member
as long as all the rings/circuits go back to the same consumer unit, they will work fine ....

be aware that the Comtrend ones are usually DS2 based UPA standard powerline ethernet adaptors ....NOT homeplug standard, based on the competing technology from Intellon...so not interoperable with the majority out there

comtrend = DS2 chips = UPA protocol
other brands = intellon chips = homeplug protocol

neither are an industry standard at present

I think some of the Netgear models like the HDX series are DS2 based, and the XAV series are Intellon based ...so you can buy HDX units that work fine with the BT Comtrend ones


Standard Member
Thanks very much for the advice.

Can you tell me which of these competing technologies will become the Betamax of powerline adapters - I'd like if possible not to be left with out dated useless unsupported technology



Established Member
It looks a racing certainty that the DS2 based products will "become the Betamax". Not even a press release at the Consumer Electronics Show this year.., they have lost money for years and I think it is very nearly the end - and BT is now the only IPTV service provider worldwide who use their products. But you can buy Comtrend products cheaply, as not everybody needs them for BT Vision (and BT sells returned products from customer churn cheaply to traders). DS2 technology is proprietary - and will only work with other DS2 products. Netgear no longer make DS2 based product, though there may be some old stock around.

HomePlug is an "open" standard, two chipset vendors shipping HomePlug AV compatible chipsets now - Gigle and Intellon, but almost all products are based on Intellon today. Another chipset vendor will start shipping this year.

An interesting blog on EDN here CES 2010: Powerline Networking Updates And Prognostications - Brian's Brain - Blog on EDN - 400000040

Beware that HomePlug 14Mbps and 85Mbps work together, but NOT with HomePlug AV (200Mbps) products. Chipsets coming in future with faster speeds will interoperate with HomePlug AV (even some low speed ones, designed for control/energy management functions rather than broadband).

Good luck! :thumbsup:

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