Skip to main content
Loading...

D-Link Covr Review

Mesh Wi-Fi networks are no longer new but D-Link's Covr is a stylishly designed kit that provides good performance and a competitive price. Read more in our full review.

PRICE WHEN REVIEWED
  • From $249
It may be a late addition to the never-ending selection of mesh networking devices that are now available, but D-Link’s new Covr is neatly designed and competitively priced, so it’ll be a good option for many people who just need an affordable way to improve Wi-Fi coverage at home.


Its compact, curved design stands out from the dull rectangular boxes favoured by most of its rivals, but the Covr takes the same approach when setting up your home network.

Instead of relying on a single router provided by your ISP to provide a Wi-Fi signal that can cover your entire home, the Covr kits provide either two or three identical routers – which it refers to as ‘Cover Points’ – that you can set up in different rooms in order to provide wider and more reliable Wi-Fi coverage throughout your home.

And, like most mesh routers, the Covr doesn’t include a modem for Internet access so you’ll still need to connect one of the Covr routers to the existing modem or router that provides your broadband Internet connection.

PRICE AND AVAILABILITY
There are two Covr kits currently available, starting at a competitive £159 for a two-piece kit – with the model number C1202 – which should be all you need for most ordinary homes up to around 3000sq.ft in size.

There’s also a three-piece kit – C1203 – available for around £209, and D-Link says that this will be suitable for larger homes up to 5000sq.ft, or for homes with rooms spread across three or more floors.

DESIGN AND FEATURES
The Covr routers are attractively designed – vaguely triangular, but with curved and rounded edges that make them look like large pebbles rather than a conventional router. The modest price means that the Covr routers aren’t exactly top-of-the-range – they only provide dual-band 802.11ac networking on the 2.4GHz and 5GHz bands, with a claimed maximum speed of 1.2Gbps.

Hard-core gamers who demand top performance might want to pay a little extra for a faster tri-band system, but the Covr’s dual-band speeds should still be fast enough for web browsing and streaming video in most homes.

The compact little routers manage to squeeze in three internal antennae that support MU-MIMO technology for streaming to multiple devices simultaneously.
Each router also includes two Gigabit Ethernet ports for wired connections (although you’ll need to use one of those ports to connect the first Covr to your existing broadband router).

There are no USB ports for connecting a printer or hard drive that you can share on your network, but each router does have a single USB-C port that is used to connect the mains power adaptor.

We asked D-Link if it would be possible to power one of the routers from a laptop that has a USB-port, as that would allow you to take one of the routers out into a garden and to extend the Wi-Fi network outside as well.

The company confirmed that this was possible – but my lightweight Dell laptop didn’t seem able to provide enough power for the Covr routers, so this option might require a laptop or battery pack that can deliver a pretty strong charge.

D-Link Covr: Set Up
The Covr routers are well designed, but the D-Link app that guides you through the set-up process is something of a mixed bag. Setting up the first Cover Point in my living room at home was actually very straightforward, as D-Link provides a little label with a QR code that you can scan, and this magically configures the first router in no time at all.

The app has some rough edges, though. Printing white text on a white background isn’t a very good idea when you’re trying to select menu options, and some of the icons and buttons overlapped on my iPad screen for some reason, which made it tricky to read some of the instructions.

Setting up the second Cover Point also proved rather confusing. Instead of placing the second Cover Point in my office – where it’s most needed, thanks to our feeble BT router – the app instructed me to go back to the living room and to connect the second Cover Point to the first Cover Point with an Ethernet cable.

And that, of course, left us with two Cover Points sitting next to each other in the same room, rather than having the second one in the office where we needed it. At that point I decided to ignore the app, ditch the Ethernet cable, and simply move the second Cover Point into my office – where, thankfully, it actually performed very well.

The app also provides some useful additional features, such as a guest network for visitors, and parental controls that allow you to block Internet access at specific times so that the kids can’t stay up watching YouTube all night long. Even so, that initial set-up process could still be confusing for home users who haven’t used a mesh networking system before.

More experienced users, on the other hand, will be pleased to discover that the Covr also provides a web browser interface, where you can configure firewall rules and port forwarding to your heart’s delight.

However, there are still some options missing here. The Covr just creates a single named network that you can connect to, rather than allowing you to name the 2.4GHz and 5GHz networks separately, and there’s no ‘bridge’ option to link the new Covr network to your existing Wi-Fi network.

This meant that the NAS drive connected to our BT router wasn’t available on the new Covr network, and had to be moved across to the Covr instead. That’s no great hardship, of course, but it did mean that both Ethernet ports on that first Covr router were already used up.

PERFORMANCE
Thankfully, the Covr’s untidy app is redeemed by the strong performance of the hardware. As we’ve mentioned, the Covr kit only provides dual-band Wi-Fi with top speeds of 1.2Gbps, but devices located in the same room as the first Cover Point recorded strong average speeds of 848Mbps.

However, it was the second Cover Point located in our office that really impressed, breezing along with consistent speeds just over 450Mbps – in contrast with our old BT router, which could barely get a Wi-Fi signal into that room at all.

SPECS
  • Available with either two or three routers (nodes)
  • Interfaces (per router): 2x Gigabit Ethernet
  • Dual-band 802.11ac (2.4GHz/5.0GHz)
  • Dimensions (per node): 51 x 117x 109mm, 250g
View the original article here

Comments

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...
Loading...

Popular posts from this blog

2019 BMW i8 Review

The 2019 BMW i8 is a head-turner for its looks, which hides its plug-in powertrain. That’s good or bad, depending on your priorities.Even among six-figure cars with two doors, the 2019 BMW i8 steals stares. That could be because of the dramatic wing doors and futuristic shape, its laser headlights at night, or the 2019 i8’s silent propulsion for up to 18 miles.
Or it may steal attention because, even after more than four years on sale, it’s a very rare sight.

LG G5 Review In-Depth

Can LG take on the Galaxy S7 with a metal design, dual-cameras and an accessory slot? Here's our first LG G5 review, focusing on LG G5 design and build, LG G5 specs, LG G5 cameras and LG G5 software and apps.
Alongside the Galaxy S7, the LG G5 is one of the biggest phones (not literally) to launch in 2016 – and we're not just talking in the Android world. It's one of the heavyweights and LG will be looking to set the market alight with the G5's alternative and innovative modular design.

Apple iPhone XR Review

If you aren't sure you are ready to leave the Home button behind and embrace Face ID, think again. We'll tell you why the iPhone XR is worth the sacrifice - especially because it's just as good (if not better than) the iPhone XS. Find out more in out full review.
Should I Buy The Apple iPhone XR?
The iPhone XR brings Face ID to the masses. We’re sure people will continue to rebel against the lack of Home button, but eventually we expect them to come round and embrace the larger screen, Portrait mode (front and back), animoji and memoji.We have no doubt that this will be a popular iPhone and it deserves to be. The only question is why would anyone buy an iPhone XS when the iPhone XR is just as powerful and has a bigger screen.

Google Pixel Review

Not everyone wants a phone with a big screen, but most small-screen phones compromise on performance and cameras. Not so with Google’s latest flagship Android phone: Here’s our Google Pixel review.
Joining the ranks of the Pixel C and Chromebook Pixel are Google’s new Pixel phones. We’re reviewing the smaller 5in Pixel here, but you can read our separate Pixel XL review if you’re after a bigger phone.

BlackBerry KEYone Review

BlackBerry soliders on with a curious Android device that gets nearly everything right. It’s not for everyone though, in fact, it’s not really for anyone. But if you want a physical keyboard you will absolutely love it.
Should I Buy The BlackBerry KEYone?
But then, the KEYone is the best BlackBerry phone for years. It has (finally) successfully melded classic BlackBerry design with the necessary mix of Android and nostalgia. Importantly, the latter is only faint this time – this is a device for 2017, not 2007.If you love your iPhone or Samsung, you’ll hate the KEYone and won’t even consider buying it. But if you’ve made it to the end of this review, chances are you’re weighing up a buy. If you think you’ll love the BlackBerry KEYone, then I’m pretty certain you won’t be disappointed. You’re part of a minority, but finally BlackBerry has a phone for you that doesn’t force you to compromise.

Like Fan Page