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Edimax EW-7811Un 150Mbps 11n Wi-Fi USB Adapter, Nano Size Lets You Plug it and Forget it, Ideal for Raspberry Pi / Pi2, Supports Windows, Mac OS, Linux (Black/Gold)
- Supports 150 Mbps 802.11n Wireless data rate - the latest wireless standard. Permits users to have the farthest range with the widest coverage. (Up to 6 times the speed and 3 times the coverage of 802.11b.).
- Power Saving designed to support smart transmit power control and auto-idle state adjustment
- Supports WMM (Wi-Fi Multimedia) Standard so that you can let different types of data have higher priority. It would allows better streaming of real-time data such as Video, Music, Skype etc
- Includes multi-language EZmax setup wizard
- Spec Standards IEEE 802.11n; backward compatible with 802.11b/g Wi-Fi Certified. Security 64/128 bit WEP Encryption and WPA-PSK, WPA2-PSK security; WPS compatible IEEE 802.1X
- Port 1 x 2.0 USB Type A. Wireless Data Rates Up to 150 Mbps. Modulation OFDM: BPSK, QPSK, 16-QAM, 64-QAM, DSSS. Frequency Band 2.4GHz - 2.4835GHz. Antenna internal chip antenna
- Channels (FCC) 2.4GHz : 1~11. Power Input USB Port (Self-Powered). Dimensions 0.28" x 0.59" x 0.73". Temperature 0 -40 degree C (32-104 degree F). Humidity 10 ~ 90% Non-Condensing. System XP/Vista/Win7, Mac, Linux
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From the manufacturer
N150 Nano Size Wi-Fi USB Adapter
Up to 150Mbps 802.11n Wireless Speed
Complies with wireless 802.11b/g/n standards with data rate up to 150Mbps (2.4Ghz).
Nano Size Design, Plug in and Forget it
With Nano size design, you can connect EW-7811Un to any USB port without blocking other USB ports. It can stay connected to your laptop.
Features & Compatibility
- Support Windows XP/Vista/7/8/8.1/10
- Support Mac OSX up to 10.12.x
- Support Raspberry Pi & Pi 2 and other Linux systems
- Free US Based Technical Support
|Product Name||N150 Nano Wi-Fi USB Adapter||N150 Nano Wi-Fi USB Adapter||AC1200 Nano Dual Band Wi-Fi USB Adapter||AC1200 Dual Band Wi-Fi USB Adapter||AC1750 Dual Band Wi-Fi USB Adapter|
|USB Version||USB 2.0||USB 2.0||USB 2.0||USB 3.0||USB 3.0|
|Dual Band||2.4GHz only||2.4GHz only + Bluetooth 4.0||✓||✓||✓|
|Antenna||Internal||Internal||2 Internal||2 Internal||3 Internal + 1 External|
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When the Edimax EW-7811Un arrived, I was able to use the default Windows-10 and Mini CD-ROM to install the driver and support software; however, neither solution worked for longer than several minutes before failing. Most troubling was that the Edimax EW-7811Un “ALMOST” worked.
When I read the current product reviews, as they pertain to Windows-10, I realized that my experience was not unique and there were a number of unhappy people who ordered the Edimax EW-7811Un for use with Windows-10. In reviewing several USB WiFi solutions on Amazon, I noticed that the Windows-10 upgrades were more problematic. This could be caused by (1) older and slower hardware or (2) the Windows-10 upgrade image was not quite the same as a native Windows-10 image.
For several days I considered writing a scathing review while devising alternative solutions but kept returning to the fact that the software was almost on the cusp of working. Finally, I called the Edimax support number, expecting technical support Hades, only to be quickly connected with a knowledge support technician. When I described the problem, the technician indicated that the wrong software was being distributed for Windows-10 and provided guidance on where to find the correct software, which was not on the primary Edimax website. As Amazon doesn’t support the posting of URL’s, the following navigation is provided on where to find the correct software:
Navagation: edimax.us | support | download drives
On the “Driver & Manual Download” page, go to Section 7 and download the ZIP compressed driver EW-7811Un Win v188.8.131.52, which is the first entry in Section 7.
I used a tablet to download the file EW-7811Un_Windows_driver_v184.108.40.206.zip and then transferred the file to Windows-10 using a USB interface. Un-ZIP the file, using Windows-10, and then run the program “Setup”. This not a GUI and runs under a DOS shell, so just wait until it completes. As Edimax Support recommended, reboot your Windows-10 system, and you should be good to go!
A few off-the-cuff observations:
(1) A built-in laptop WiFi generally has a hidden and sometimes large antenna under the case. The Edimax may not work in WiFi marginal areas of your home. There are Edimax products with large external antennas but these will not have the small form factor of the Edimax EW-7811Un. If the connection is very poor the Edumax is flagged as “Turned Off” and you may have to use Windows-10 to re-enable the WiFi. This could be a bug!
(2) I noticed that the Edimax EW-7811Un sometimes appears to go to sleep. Turning Device “Power Management” OFF may correct that problem.
I have now run a four hour series of serious stress tests and, with the exception of marginal areas in my home, the Edimax EW-7811Un has performed well. I am giving this product “Five Starts” because of the good performance at a very affordable price point. Yes, Edimax’s software quality control was troubling in this case, but I would give their Technical Support “Six Stars” without a second thought.
Microsoft Windows-10 upgrade policy was highly innovative and has given new life to older hardware and after market upgrades such as the Edimax EW-7811Un. Edimax and Amazon have to do a better job of communicating the good news to their customers.
The adapter doesn't support any power saving modes, no 4addr mode (no bridging), no AP mode, and I couldn't get it to go into monitor mode despite the claim that it can.
The only good news that I have is that the speed and link quality was pretty good for me on both 2.4Ghz and 5Ghz.
Physically the adapter is nice and small. The MAC and serial number is etched into the metal, as not shown in the completely photo-shopped product pictures.
Note:This device is the same as the Asus USB-AC53 Nano. Edimax makes both devices and they're essentially the same device. I chose to go with Asus drivers instead. I also tried the Edimax drivers, which seem to be the same.
Considering my experience around wireless devices, I sort of expected this device to not do so well based on the testing done with it. But, it was slightly worse than my expectations.
Throughput this review, I will mention TX and RX. TX is the signal from the adapter to say your router(how well it transmits the signal). RX is the signal from your router to the adapter(how well it receives the signal).
When it comes to 2.4 GHz, the RX is pretty bad. While other devices could see a very high signal, this adapter could see it as a weak signal. It had some of the worst 2.4 GHz RX I have ever seen. I did not test 2.4 GHz TX. If you were considering this device for 2.4 GHz, then you may be very disappointed. I would skip it in this case.
When it comes to 5 GHz, the RX is actually fairly good. It received the signal from my router with a decent strength compared to some of the other devices in this room(sometimes even better). I was actually kind of surprised how well it did on the RX side of things. However, it's a much different story when it comes to 5 GHz TX. The signal transmitted from this adapter is really poor. It had the worst TX signal out of all of the other client devices in this room. While it would report a decent 3-4 bar signal coming from my router, the adapter was basically hanging on for dear life to the gateway from its end. While the adapter's RX signal would be -70 dB or so(which is decent), the adapter's TX signal(reported by the router) was usually around -88 to -92 dB, which is extremely poor. Because of this, there was low throughput because the upload side of the adapter was just too weak to respond back at times(poor upload can affect download). In areas of this room where other devices can chug along, this adapter ended up just not working at all. It would be connected with a decent signal, but due to the poor TX no traffic was moving. The adapter was basically offline due to that.
With the size of this device and how the antennas are configured, I assume it wouldn't be an amazing performer, but I expected it to be passable, but it wasn't really even that(if you're using this at longer ranges). It performed worse than other small devices and ones that are only 1x1 versus 2x2 of this adapter. You should expect this device to performance around the same as a 1x1 device, as it's not up to par with other 2x2 devices.
Edit: Speaking of 2x2 vs 1x1. As I looked at the link rates for my adapter, they were reporting 325 Mbps(80 MHz), 60 Mbps(40 MHz), and even 15 Mbps(40 MHz) at times. Looking at the link rate tables, it appears the adapter is only using 1x1(I didn't test in close range to determine more). Those rates seem to be only associated with 1x1(1 stream) devices. I did read a review of the Asus variant. In the peformance review, it showed similar performance to other 1x1 adapters. The network device this is connected to is 4x4 AC for reference, so it was not a limiting factor. Edit: It seems that you only receive the benefits of the 2x2 MIMO at closer range, since the 2nd antenna is simply too weak and it basically becomes 1x1 at longer distances. If you're using this adapter at longer range, then you should look at this as if it's 1x1. If you're using it at close range, then it should be compared to 2x2 devices.
Speaking of size, this adapter is really small. When I saw it online, I wasn't sure how small it would actually be, but it's actually fairly small. I thought that the size would make it hard to remove when I saw it, but it wasn't too hard to remove from a port.
Some reviewers mentioned the adapter becoming extremely hot. I have not had the chance to use the adapter for extremely long periods, but with my usage of it, I have not seen it become extremely hot. It did become warm, but not finger burning hot. Edit: I retract this statement somewhat. I did notice the metal part become fairly hot after a long download.
This device actually comes with a mini CD, something I haven't seen in years. I skipped the CD though and downloaded the Asus drivers. I don't know what the differences are(if any) between the Edimax and Asus variant of this device's drivers. I imagine Edimax basically gives them their drivers(from Realtek) anyway.
- This device does not support DFS 5 GHz channels. It was also never tested for use on DFS channels, so DFS in a future update doesn't seem likely. I hope that they do.
- For comparison, the much larger Netgear A6200 adapters has a TX signal of about -79 dB or so to my router over 5 GHz. The Edimax in the same location is roughly -88 dB. That difference could mean a large difference in throughput at long distances.
- If you're using this adapter at close range 5 GHz, then it may be good enough for you. You may have to skip this device for medium-long range unless they work on bumping the output power or tweak some things.
- As mentioned earlier, this device acts more like it's 1x1. Not sure if that's a bug or not, but it just doesn't behave like a device that is 2x2. I suppose it's because I believe I read that one antenna actually has negative gain.
- Most other devices/adapters I have seen will drop their theorectical connection rate down when transferring data in certain situations to improve the SNR(signal to noise ratio). I did not see this occur with this adapter in my case. It reported a constant speed in Windows and did not budge when doing downloads. This is not a good thing as it makes it even worse in poor signal conditions.
- There is a blue LED that flashes(with the Asus drivers) inside of the case constantly. If you do not like flashing LEDs, then you may be annoyed by this adapter. However, at certain angles it cannot be seen and its fairly faint. With the Edimax drivers, the light is a constant blue when connected.
I know Edimax usually reads these reviews and comments, so if they have any comment on anything mentioned here, I would like to hear it.
I do not plan on returning this device. It's not amazing, but it was fairly cheap(especially considering the Asus re-brand of the same device is double the price). I'll probably toss it to one of my not often used devices.
I thought about rating this device 3 stars, but ended up choosing 2 stars before publishing this review. Mainly because it's fairly useless in my situation. If they were to fix the issues with poor 5 GHz TX performance, then I would probably bump this up to 4 stars for value.
Update: I ended up adjusting my rating to 3 stars. I thought that 2 was a bit too harsh on this.