|At a glance|
|Product||D-Link PowerLine AV2 2000 Gigabit Network Extender Kit (DHP-701AV) [Website]|
|Summary||First HomePlug AV2-MIMO adapter using Broadcom's BCM60500 chipset|
|Pros||• Can provide 450+ Mbps of total throughput with multiple traffic sources|
• Reacts quickly to line noise changes
|Cons||• Huge up/downlink imbalance in simultaneous throughput test.|
There has been some excitement about D-Link's DHP-701AV "2000 Mbps" HomePlug AV2 adapter due to the largest number yet on a powerline product. But it's yet another case of over-zealous marketing to too-gullible consumers.
As the good ol' HomePlug AV2 profile chart trotted out in previous reviews shows, the top AV2 profile is only 1.5 Gbps.
HomePlug AV2 Profiles
D-Link is likely using the same, uh, creative math given as explanation for the 1000 Mbps "speed" claimed for ZyXEL's PLA5206 and just multiplied by two, since the DHP-701AV is a MIMO adapter. Here is the explanation again:
- Broadcom HPAV2 SISO device can use a bandwidth of up to 84.3 MHz (from ~1.8 MHz up to ~86.1 MHz).
- In this bandwidth, a total of 3455 OFDM carriers are employed with a minimum symbol time of 40.96 us
- The maximum bit allocation per carrier is 12
- The maximum PHY rate is obtained as follows: 3455 carriers x 12 bits/carrier ÷ 40.96us = 1012.2 Mbps
You'll see shortly that performance is nowhere near 1000 Mbps, let alone 2000 Mbps.
The DHP-701AV is fairly large as current-design powerline adapters go. The photo below provides an idea of its 3.89" x 2.86" x 1.34" profile and shows it won't block the adjacent outlet in a standard U.S. duplex. The serial number label specs a 100 - 240 VAC 50/60 Hz operating range. Note the photo shows the individual adapters are labeled DHP-700AV.
D-Link DHP-701AV plugged in
The callout diagram below shows the adapter supports tri-color HomePlug link quality indication. The single Gigabit Ethernet port is centered on the bottom of the adapter, with the Reset / Encryption button sitting to its left.
D-Link DHP-701AV callouts
The User Guide says the adapter goes into power-saving mode after 5 minutes of Ethernet inactivity and powers up again when activity resumes. I verified this by the following procedure, which ran without a hitch.
- Plugged in two adapters, let them link up and started a long ping from the HomePlug connected machine to another machine on my Ethernet LAN.
- Unplugged the cable connecting one adapter to my LAN switch. Verified that ping showed no response.
- Waited until the Ethernet unplugged DHP-701AV entered power-save.
- Plugged Ethernet back in and verified that adapter powered up and ping returns resumed within a few seconds.
The DHP-701AV kit is the first appearance of the second HomePlug AV2 device Broadcom announced over a year ago. The inside photo below clearly shows the BCM60500, which is coupled to the sheet-metal thermal spreader in the top cover via the thermal pad stuck to the spreader.
D-Link DHP-701AV inside
The plastic case has only a few measly vent holes on the back of its case. The case got moderately warm to the touch.