6 Best Wi-Fi Extender for Optimum in 2022

This is our review of the best Wi-Fi boosters for Optimum Internet plans in 2022. 

Optimum modems and routers

We bought a handful of Wi-Fi extenders from leading brands. And we put them through various tests in the same conditions to find the top performers. 

After thorough testing, we found the Netgear X6S EX8000 AC3000 to be our top choice for Optimum. It has great range, fast speeds, and its price is fair for the performance it provides. 

Netgear X6S EX8000 AC3000
Source: Netgear.com

Editor’s Choice – Netgear X6S EX8000 AC3000

Best Overall

  • Coverage: 50 feet
  • Max speed (Wi-Fi): 318.21 Mbps
  • Separate networks: No
  • Recommended for: Optimum 1 GIG plan
  • Wireless standard: Wi-Fi 5
  • Warranty: 1-year

But, not all home networks need the same features and speed from an extender. For example, a slower internet plan doesn’t need an ultra-fast extender. Their speed, along with your budget, house, router, and modem, all affect which extender is best for you. 

We put together this guide with our top recommendations to help you find the best extender for your Optimum Internet. 

So, let’s get started and figure out which is best for you!

Top 6 Wi-Fi Extenders For Optimum

  1. Netgear X6S EX8000 AC3000Editor’s Choice
  2. TP-Link RE650 AC2600Best Range
  3. Netgear EAX80 AX6000Best Performer
  4. TP-Link RE605X AX1800Runner Up
  5. Netgear EX7300 AC2200Best Value
  6. TP-Link RE450 AC1750Budget Friendly

6 Best Wi-Fi Extenders For Optimum

Here are our quick reviews of the top Wi-Fi boosters for Optimum internet. 

#1 Netgear X6S EX8000 AC3000 – Editor’s Choice

Netgear X6S EX8000 AC3000
  • Coverage: 50 feet
  • Max speed (Wi-Fi): 318.21 Mbps
  • Separate networks: No
  • Recommended for:  Optimum 1 GIG plan
  • Wireless standard: Wi-Fi 5
  • Warranty: 1-year

Pros

  • Good range
  • Fast
  • Tri-band

Cons

  • Some setup delays

If you have the Optimum 1 GIG plan or lower, the Netgear X6S EX8000 AC3000 is our top choice.

The 5 GHz band delivered speeds of 318.21 Mbps at 5 feet, 184.51 Mbps at 15 feet, and 158.51 Mbps from 25 feet away.

While not the fastest extender we tested, it provides enough speed to download over 100 GB in less than a half-hour. And it gives a good balance of speed, range, and price. 

After connecting it to the router with Ethernet, its speed nearly doubled to 628.21 Mbps.

Note that we performed all testing with an ASUS RT-AX88U router Gigabit internet. So, your speed and performance may vary if you use a weaker/older router. 

The X6S’s range was adequate, but it was nothing special. It has a maximum reach of 50 feet. If you position this extender detector in a central location, this should be enough to cover most multi-story homes.

We had some difficulty setting up the Netgear X6S EX8000 AC3000, although it performs perfectly overall. It just took a few attempts to connect it to the router. But after that, everything worked as expected.

Furthermore, the Netgear X6S is a Tri-band extender, which means it includes an extra 5 GHz band. This boosts bandwidth and makes it ideal for smart home networks with many gadgets.

Setting up the Netgear X6S was a bit of a struggle, but it is a solid extender with decent range and speed performance. It also includes combined networks, which work better with wireless electronics since you don’t have to switch networks when you move around your house.

The X6S’s balance of speed, range, combined networks, and a fair cost makes it our top recommendation for Optimum. 




#2 TP-Link RE650 AC2600 – Best Performer

TP-Link RE650 AC2600
  • Coverage: ~70 feet
  • Max speed (Wi-Fi): 332.58 Mbps
  • Separate networks: Yes (not with TP-Link routers)
  • Recommended for:  Optimum 1 GIG or lower
  • Wireless standard: Wi-Fi 5 AC2600 
  • Warranty: 3 years

Pros

  • Fast speed
  • 3-year warranty
  • Great range

Cons

  • Creates second network

For the best Wi-Fi extender for Optimum with the greatest distance, we recommend the TP-Link RE650 AC2600.

On Wi-Fi, the TP-Link RE650 can extend your home’s Wi-Fi signal up to 70 feet, which is further than any other model we tested.

It added 10 feet to our range on Ethernet, lifting it to 80 feet.

It’s enough coverage to reach all of your rooms, even in larger houses. In certain situations, you may even bring Wi-Fi to your garden outback.

The RE650 offers outstanding speeds on the 5 GHz band of up to 332.58 Mbps on Wi-Fi and 657.23 Mbps on Ethernet at five feet.

The TP-Link RE650 also comes with a gigabit Ethernet connection if you want to hardwire devices like gaming consoles or smart TVs. 

And it is compatible with all major Wi-Fi routers, including all that Optimum provides.

The extender’s wireless dual-band 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz connections will ensure you have a seamless streaming experience with no buffering or delays

With its rapid speed, you may download your next video game while simultaneously streaming many 4k videos without difficulty.

The RE650 proved to be quite simple to set up with the Tether app from TP-Link. It took just a few minutes.

One disadvantage is that the RE650 produces a second network, which might be complicated with wireless gadgets as you move from room to room. However, you will only have one network if you have a TP-Link router with OneMesh compatibility.

The TP-Link RE650 AC2600 is an excellent Wi-Fi extender for Optimum subscribers searching for the greatest possible coverage. The only negative aspect is that if you don’t have OneMesh, it will create a secondary network.




#3 Netgear EAX80 AX6000 – Best Range

Netgear EAX80 AX6000
  • Coverage: ≈ 65 feet
  • Max speed (Wi-Fi): 437.34 Mbps
  • Separate networks: No
  • Recommended for: Any Optimum internet plan
  • Wireless standard: Wi-Fi 6 AX6000
  • Warranty: 1-year

Pros

  • Fantastic range
  • Single network
  • Fast 

Cons

  • Some problems setting up
  • More expensive than other options

The Netgear EAX80 is our choice for the best range Wi-Fi extender for Optimum because it’s a highly effective unit that can boost your Wi-Fi signal by an additional 65 feet.

That is enough range to eliminate any Wi-Fi dead-spot in most homes.

This Wi-Fi extender also has a built-in 4×4 MU-MIMO antenna that allows it to deliver blazing fast speeds of up to 436.34 Mbps on Wi-Fi and 811.59 MBPS on Ethernet at five feet using the 5 GHz band. 

Its lightning-quick speed is enough to download 100 GB of data in just over forty minutes!

The Netgear EAX80 also supports the newest 802.11ax Wi-Fi technology (Wi-Fi 6) and all major Wi-Fi routers from Optimum.

The EAX80 has an attractive benefit over other models: it does not create a second network. With mobile devices, you can wander around your house without worrying about the network you’re using.

The EAX80 had a harder setup than other models we tested, and it took us a little longer to get everything up and running. And to work after switching from Wi-Fi to Ethernet, we had to totally reset the EAX80.

It’s also more expensive than the other five we recommend in this guide.

Despite the Netgear EAX80 AX6000’s few flaws, it is a fantastic option if you’re searching for a Wi-Fi extender that will provide the greatest possible range and good speed.




#4 TP-Link RE605X AX1800 – Runner Up

TP-Link RE605X AX1800
  • Coverage: ≈ 60 feet
  • Max speed (Wi-Fi): 346.35 Mbps
  • Separate networks: Yes (not with TP-Link routers)
  • Recommended for:  Optimum 1 GIG or below (1,000 Mbps)
  • Wireless standard: Wi-Fi 6 AX1800
  • Warranty: 3 years

Pros

  • Fast speed
  • 3-year warranty
  • Fast and easy setup

Cons

  • Second network

Our “runner-up” choice for a Wi-Fi extender with Optimum Internet is the TP-Link RE605X AX1800.

It extended our Wi-Fi signal by 60 feet, which is enough to reach rooms across large homes. And on the 5 GHz band, it reached speeds of 346.35 Mbps at five feet and 674.53 Mbps at five feet on Wi-Fi and Ethernet (respectively). 

Both of which are sufficient for streaming multiple HD 4k videos!

Because it has such incredible speeds, it is compatible with all Optimum Internet plan levels, including Optimum 1 GIG.

The RE605X AX1800 extender is also compatible with all major Wi-Fi routers and includes a gigabit Ethernet connector for hardwiring devices.

The setup took less than a minute. It was very easy; we just had to connect it to the router’s Wi-Fi and follow the instructions on the Tether app.

The TP-Link RE605X AX1800 is an excellent Wi-Fi extender for Optimum subscribers seeking speed and value.

The biggest drawback of the TE605X is that it creates a secondary network if you don’t have a TP-Link router with OneMesh. As a result, you’ll need to change networks on your wireless gadgets as you go throughout your house.

You’ll only have one network if you connect the TE605X to Ethernet.

Overall, the TP-Link TE605X is a strong Wi-Fi extender that would be an excellent fit for your home network. It’s quick, simple to set up, and doesn’t cost much.

The only disadvantage we discovered is that it generates a new network unless you have OneMesh or connect it with Ethernet.




#5 Netgear EX7300 AC2200 – Best Value

Netgear EX7300 AC2200
  • Coverage: 60 feet
  • Max speed (Wi-Fi): 324.58 Mbps
  • Separate networks: Yes
  • Recommended for:  Optimum 500 or lower
  • Wireless standard: Wi-Fi 5
  • Warranty: 1-year

Pros

  • Quick setup
  • Low-cost
  • Good range

Cons

  • Setup hiccups
  • Second network

For those who use Optimum Internet and want the best value, we recommend the Netgear EX7300 AC2200.

At a distance of 5 feet, the Netgear EX7300 extender provided speeds of 342.58 Mbps on the 5 GHz band in our tests. 

At the same distance on Ethernet, it achieved 651.58 Mbps.

The EX7300 is slower than some of the other extenders we tested. But it’s still fast enough that each family member can watch separate 4k films at the same time and browse social media on their phones.

This Wi-Fi repeater is also compatible with all major Wi-Fi routers and includes a gigabit Ethernet port. This allows you to connect devices directly to your network.

It was straightforward to set up. We only spent a few minutes doing it, but we did encounter one difficulty while installing– it would not connect right away

However, we conducted a hard reset, and it worked properly.

The EX7300 has a second network, so you’ll have to switch networks on portable devices when you move around your home.

But it’s also one of the more affordable choices on this list (it costs less than most of the other picks besides the TP-Link RE450 AC1750). Plus, it offers outstanding speed and coverage, with the slight downside of creating a secondary network.




#6 TP-Link RE450 AC1750 – Budget-Friendly

TP Link RE450 AC1750
  • Coverage: 60 feet
  • Max speed (Wi-Fi): 291.56 Mbps
  • Separate networks: Yes
  • Recommended for: Optimum 100 and Optimum 300 plans
  • Wireless standard: Wi-Fi 5
  • Warranty: 3 years

Pros

  • Easy setup
  • Great range

Cons

  • Slower speeds
  • Second network

The TP-Link RE450 AC1750 is the most affordable Wi-Fi repeater of our recommendations. 

It has speeds of up to 291.56 Mbps on the 5 GHz band and up to 125.44 Mbps on the 2.4 GHz band at five feet. 

It’s the slowest of all Wi-Fi extenders in our recommendations. But, if you have Optimum’s base Internet plan (100 Mbps), it is more than enough to take full advantage of your plan’s speed

It is even useful for the Optimum 300 (300 Mbps) plan. Especially if you connect it to Ethernet– at 5 feet, it reached speeds of 458.02 Mbps

Again, these aren’t the quickest speeds we saw while testing, but they’re still fast enough for multiple users to enjoy 4k video streaming. 

But if you want even faster speed, connecting a laptop directly to the RE450 with Ethernet achieved a whopping 703.35 Mbps

The TP-Link RE450 AC1750 is also one of the more straightforward repeaters to set up. It only took us a minute or two with no issues. 

And it can reach up to 60 feet on Wi-Fi and 70 feet on Ethernet. Creating a large enough Wi-Fi bubble for most homes. 

The RE450 creates a second network, which can be a pain if you frequently move around your home with wireless devices. 

But, it makes up for this and its slower speed (which is more than enough for Optimum lower-tier plans) with its affordable price and easy setup. 




Do you need a Wi-Fi Extender?

Wi-Fi extenders are a great way to eliminate Wi-Fi dead spots from your home. 

Many homes will benefit from using a Wi-Fi booster, but some situations may benefit from alternative solutions. 

But, if you have a large home with many Wi-Fi dead spots and use lots of smart home sensors, a Mesh network could be a better choice. Click here to see how Mesh networks compare to Wi-Fi boosters. 

Alternatively, you might be able to fix your Wi-Fi issues by moving your router to a central location. 

Lastly, your modem and/or router could be past its prime. If you need to upgrade your modem or router, check out of top modem and router guides for Optimum to see our recommendations. 

Optimum Wi-Fi Extender Buying Guide

Here is what you should consider while you shop for a Wi-Fi booster for your Optimum home internet. 

Match the Brand

Matching the brand of the extender with your router’s brand is the best practice.  It gives you the best chance of seamless integration and avoids potential compatibility issues.

For example, Optimum usually provides its own router with its service. If you have their original router, you can’t match them.  

Wi-Fi 5 vs. Wi-Fi 6

The main difference between Wi-Fi 5 and Wi-Fi 6 is speed and range. Wi-Fi 6 is the newest standard and provides faster speeds. 

Wi-Fi 5, on the other hand, has decent speeds but is slower than Wi-Fi 6. So, if you have a need for speed (like with Optimum’s 1 GIG internet plan) and have a large home, then Wi-Fi 6 is the better choice. 

Wi-Fi 6 is the fastest and most efficient wi-fi yet. If you have a new router that supports Wi-Fi 6, then you should get an extender that supports it too. 

However, if you have an older router that doesn’t support Wi-Fi 6, then you don’t need to get a Wi-Fi 6 extender. Any of the other options on our list will work just fine. 

Wi-Fi 5 is the previous standard, and it’s still terrific. In fact, some people don’t notice a difference in speeds between Wi-Fi 5 and Wi-Fi 6. 

Check out our Wi-Fi 5 vs. Wi-Fi 6 guide to learn more. 

What if my Router is Wi-Fi 4?

The best option is to update your router to a Wi-Fi 5 or Wi-Fi 6 unit.  This will improve your speeds and range and future-proof your home network. 

If you’ve had Optimum internet for a while and they provided the router, you can ask them for a new one. You should especially do so if you’re paying for Optimum’s 1 GIG or 500 plans. 

Otherwise, you’re not taking advantage of what you’re paying for. 

Dual-band vs. Tri-band

The vast majority of wi-fi extenders are dual-band, which means they use both the 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz frequency bands. All routers from Optimum are dual-band

Tri-band wi-fi extenders are less common, but they offer some advantages. They have an extra 5 GHz band that you can use for data-intensive activities like gaming or 4K streaming. 

If you do a lot of data-intensive activities at home, then a tri-band Wi-Fi extender might be worth considering. However, most people don’t need the extra band and will be fine with a dual-band unit. 

Learn more about dual-band and tri-band here.

Coverage

One of the most important factors to consider when choosing a Wi-Fi extender is coverage. 

You’ll want to make sure that the unit you choose has enough range to cover the areas of your home that need a signal boost. 

To do this, you’ll need to know the square footage of your home and the range of the unit you’re considering. 

The Wi-Fi extenders we tested have a range of around 50-80 feet. This is usually more than sufficient for most homes. 

But, the range the Wi-Fi boosters advertise is not accurate. The ones we tested reached 70-120% of their claimed range. 

So, buy a Wi-Fi extender with a 30% larger range than what you actually need to account for this. 

Connected to the Router Using Ethernet or Wi-Fi

Connecting to Ethernet always provides faster speeds than Wi-Fi. 

However, it’s not always possible or convenient to connect using Ethernet. 

In these cases, you can connect your wi-fi extender to your router using Wi-Fi. 

Still, most wi-fi extenders can connect to both. 

The benefit of connecting using wi-fi is that it’s more convenient than running an Ethernet cable. The downside is that it’s not as fast as a wired connection. 

If you want the fastest speeds possible, you should connect your wi-fi extender to your router using Ethernet

If convenience is more important to you, connecting using wi-fi is a better option.

So, what mode is best?

If you have Ethernet connections available, Ethernet is the best option. If not, then wi-fi is the next best thing. 

Just remember that wi-fi is not as fast as Ethernet, so you might not get the same speeds that you would with a wired connection. 

For example, if you have Optimum’s fastest plan (Optimum 1 GIG) and use a Wi-Fi extender, you might not be able to take full advantage of the 1,000 Mbps they offer. 

Mesh Wi-Fi vs. Wi-Fi Extender/Repeater 

A mesh Wi-Fi network is a wireless network that uses multiple access points to create a single Wi-Fi network. They support large coverage areas and many devices and provide a seamless, single Wi-Fi network. 

A mesh network can cover a large area and be used in large homes or with many smart devices. Mesh networks work best with Optimum’s faster internet plans like the Optimum 1 GIG and Optimum 500. They allow you to take full advantage of the speed you pay for.

On the other hand, a Wi-Fi extender is a device that is used to extend the range of a Wi-Fi signal.

A Wi-Fi extender/repeater can be used in conjunction with a router to extend the coverage of a Wi-Fi signal. They also work well in large homes and are better suited for the mid-tier internet plans from Optimum, like Optimum 300 and 500.

But, they also work well for Optimum 1 Gig (their top plan) if you just need to extend Wi-Fi to a particular area and don’t have many wireless smart devices.

How to Set Up an Extender With Optimum

After you purchase your Wi-Fi extender, the easiest way to set it up is with the extender’s mobile app

To do this: 

  1. Download the mobile app for your extender. There should be instructions on how to download it in the box. Some brands include a QR code you can scan with your camera, which quickly links to the app download page. 
  2. Once the download is complete, follow the instructions in the app to connect to your Wi-Fi network and configure your settings. 
  3. Once you’re done, test your connection to ensure everything is working correctly. 

You can also set up your Wi-Fi extender with the extender’s web address. 

  1. Go to the website for your extender’s manufacturer and create an account. 
  2. Once you have an account, log in and follow the instructions to set up your Wi-Fi extender. 
  3. Make sure to test your connection once you’re done to ensure that everything is working correctly. 

If you need help, you can always contact the extender’s customer support. They can help you troubleshoot any problems you might be having and get your Wi-Fi extender up and running in no time.

Here are a few tips to keep in mind when setting up a Wi-Fi extender:

  1. Place the extender within range of your router (halfway between if and your Wi-Fi dead spot is best)
  2. Avoid placing the extender near sources of interference, such as microwaves or cordless phones.
  3. If possible, connect the extender to your router using an Ethernet cable. 
  4. Configure the extender to use your router’s same SSID and password.
  5. Update the firmware on your router and extender.
  6. If you’re still having trouble, try restarting your modem and router.

Optimum Internet Plans

Here are the Internet plans from Optimum and the booster we recommend for each. [1]

Internet PlanWi-Fi Booster
100 Mbps InternetTP-Link RE450 AC1750
Optimum 300 (300 Mbps)TP-Link RE450 AC1750
Optimum 500 (500 Mbps)Netgear X6S EX8000 AC3000
Optimum 1 GIG (1,000 Mbps)Netgear EAX80 AX6000

FAQs

Here are some of the most frequent questions we get concerning Optimum internet and Wi-Fi boosters. 

How do I choose a Wi-Fi Extender?

When choosing a Wi-Fi extender, you need to consider the following factors:

  • Coverage – How much area do you need to cover?
  • Performance – How fast do you need the connection to be?
  • Range – How far away from the router do you need the extender to work?
  • Compatibility – Does the extender work with your router?
  • Features – What extra features does the extender have?
  • Price – How much are you willing to spend on an extender?

What is the difference between a Wi-Fi repeater and a Wi-Fi extender?

A Wi-Fi repeater is a device that amplifies the signal from your router. On the other hand, a Wi-Fi extender creates a new network using the same SSID as your router.

To learn more about how they compare, check out our repeater vs. extender comparison post

What are the best ways to extend my Wi-Fi range?

Besides purchasing Wi-Fi extenders, you can use a few other methods to improve your Wi-Fi networks range.  These include:

  • Position your router in a central location
  • Use a mesh Wi-Fi system
  • Eliminate interference from other devices
  • Update your router’s firmware
  • Change the channel on your router
  • Use Powerline adapters
  • Get a new router

Which is the best Wi-Fi Extender for Optimum?

The best Wi-Fi extender for Optimum is the Netgear X6S EX8000 AC3000. It offers excellent performance, range, and compatibility. It also has some extra features that make it worth the price.

What is the best way to extend my Wi-Fi range outside?

One of the best ways to extend your Wi-Fi range outside is to purchase a mesh Wi-Fi system. A mesh Wi-Fi system uses multiple nodes to create a single, seamless network. 

You can place a Mesh Wi-Fi node near an exterior wall close to the outdoor area you need Wi-Fi. 

This will give you extended coverage and eliminate dead zones.

Can I use any Wi-Fi extender with Optimum?

Yes, you can use a Wi-Fi extender with Optimum internet, assuming it is compatible with your router.

You should check to see if the Wi-Fi extender is compatible before purchasing. Most modern extenders are compatible with most routers, but it’s always best to double-check.

You can find this information in the product description or on the manufacturer’s website.

Optimum internet provides its own brand of router, so you can’t match it. But all extenders will work with it. 

How much does a Wi-Fi extender cost?

Wi-Fi extenders typically range in price from $30 to $200. The price will depend on the extender’s performance, range, and features.

The Final Verdict

We tested the best Wi-Fi extenders around and under the same conditions. It took a while, but we determined the Netgear X6S EX8000 AC3000 is the best Wi-Fi extender for Optimum. 

It is fast, makes a combined network, has a great range, and you can get it at a fair price. The only downside was some minor setup delays. If you want the perfect mix of speed, affordability, and performance, the Netgear X6S is a great choice. 

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