Best Keys Adapters USB Wifi 2020 | Reviews and Guide
This is true for a long time: a computer that is not connected to the Internet is not used much. And the best key WiFi enable us to never lose the signal.
Whether to replace a faulty wireless card, to benefit from a better network – or interesting features – or to set up his own server at home; their uses are many, and the models have in fact all their specificity.
What kind of key do you need WiFi? For what purpose? And especially for what price? We are going to overhaul everything you need to know to make the right choice the first time.
Best Wifi key in 2020
1. TP-Link TL – A still relevant key WiFi
This wireless key has a peculiarity, as lance the boil immediately. 3 years old already, it was not as spectacular performance than its competitors modern. However, it comes out of TP-Link factories, probably the best company of the world Wifi connectivity, and it continues to be relevant today.
With reception speed of 300Mbps, on paper, it would take us a little moue of disappointment. His only 2.4GHz frequency band does not offer the same performance as newer models.
But that being said, it all depends on the use. The fact is that many key wireless nowadays offer a bandwidth much greater than that which can be used; and even greater than what our internet provider sends us really.
300Mbps is the maximum that can support WiFi key. Concretely, that means that if you have the fiber, you should get to 3-4 MB / s of bandwidth for download.
And that’s not all bad! Especially if one takes into account the other benefits of this model. In addition to a ridiculously low price for the quality of construction TP-Link – whose recent products are 3 to 10 times more expensive – it already had for its time features and advanced technologies.
An example ? The MU-MIMO compatibility, which is not always found on contemporary models. For added security, you can activate WPS network encryption with a simple press of the button on the key and enable quick and secure connection.
This is not the most compact or the fastest. But if you have a small budget and you just want to connect your PC to the network for office tasks, for example, it is enough. No Wifi key promise you a MU-MIMO compatibility and such construction quality for less than 8 €!
2. Asus Nano – The tiny cheap WiFi key
Asus has become a leading brand in office, including connectivity. In recent years, besides their computers, they put on the market many devices and tools access, including routers that are hoisted on the podium different prices Hi-Tech. Their key Wifi nano is in the brand: thoughtful, for a small price.
As for TP-Link, part of its excellent value is due to a certain length of the product. But the argument is the same: this tiny dongle Wifi offers compatibility options and features it is still rare to find anywhere.
And because, in 2017 at the launch of the Asus nano, the model was a bestseller in its field. One of the reasons for its success: its small size. If today there are many key Wifi are achieved such a feat of miniaturization, it is rare that the result is so impressive.
It weighs 4.5 grams. To give you an idea, it’s the weight of a coin of 5 cents. Yet there there.
No bandwidth, that’s true. Compared with new models that can exceed 1800Mbps, the 150 offers the Asus nano may disappoint. This is due to WiFi standard used by the dongle 802.11n supplanted in recent years by the 802.11ac.
But as we explained to the TP-Link, in practice, this limitation is one that for those who use a lot of bandwidth, which already received a lot. If we can not imagine stream on Twitch or play online via this key, it is quite possible to use for office tasks or stream 1080p Youtube.
Especially as it has other advantages, such as AP function, or Access Point. It allows, via the wireless key to turn your computer into hotspot for connecting other devices. At the time, for less than 12 €, it was unexpected: and even today, it may prove useful. It is even compatible with Raspberry computers, and easy to configure in most Linux versions!
The Asus nano remains relevant and competitive model, despite his age. Its small size and comfortable network performance should prove entirely satisfactory, especially if you will not consume a lot of bandwidth.
3. Flybiz – Key Wireless dual-band most comprehensive entry-level
Flybiz, it is a recent Wifi key. It costs is a little more expensive than the two models we talked about earlier, but it is one of the most comprehensive options available on the entry-level market.
This is the latest wireless standards: you can blow, we have not studied that obsolete models. With its dual-band compatibility, it offers 1200Mbps bandwidth.
What is the dual band? Since 802.11n WiFi signal can be divided into two different types of shares. The standard 2.4GHz and 5GHz – that has nothing to do with the 5G – while the older models were limited to 2.4.
The latter, has not been completely abandoned, since in fact the two are quite complementary. The 2.4GHz signal is a weaker signal, but longer range. It is limited to 300Mbps. On the other hand, the signal reaches 5GHz 900Mbps, but it deteriorates faster over the distance.
If your router is located at the other end of the house, the wireless key will automatically connect to the 2.4GHz part of the signal to provide more stability; otherwise, she will receive the most powerful.
A WiFi enabled key technology with dual-band is paramount if you want to take advantage of the power of your network, otherwise you’ll be limited to 300Mbps, regardless of the bandwidth emitted from wifi router.
Only drawback of this technology: it requires a more or less discreet antenna. In the case of Flybiz, it is rather in the latter category … This is not a problem if you plug it into a tower, since its size is designed so that it does not interfere with the insertion of another key. However, depending on the configuration of your notebook, it can clutter to type on the computer: hence the importance of nano models!
As Asus Nano, this key also offers WiFi hotspot function, if you connect your computer via Ethernet, it can then be converted as issuing of the Wifi network and not transmitting, and serve as the hub connecting various devices in your home .
The Flybiz is not the most discreet key, but it offers very good performance for a mini price. If your priority is not in size but in gross value, it is a safe choice enough.
4. Maxesla – The Key Wireless Dual-Band Cheapest
Maxesla is an input subsidiary range Realtek, a leader of the connections. And it is interesting for connectivity devices: their keys WiFi are not always perfect, but they are malignant, complete, and at a price that is unbeatable.
The Maxesla is a wireless key that, in many ways, is similar to Flybiz. Instead, it is a little less expensive and present, in real conditions, superior performance. In addition, the antenna can be oriented at 360 degrees. In addition to allowing the position to better capture the signal, that is a point that sets the usability problem posed by Flybiz on laptops.
If, on paper, it has the same technology Dual-Band 2.4GHz and 5GHz, it provides better real bandwidth. And for that, you have to stop briefly on the meaning of the figures provided by the brands in terms of connection speed.
This, as many key wireless market, says she can receive 1200Mbps. This is actually misleading for three reasons. First, it would be huge: it is a performance barely reached by the fiber via an Ethernet connection. Then, because the bandwidth is divided between two frequencies, 2.4GHz and 5GHz, one 300 and one 900 Mbps. Finally, because we must take into account many other factors, the antenna of the router to your Wifi key, through each interference, each insulation material, each technology on the way, every wall that the signal bounced.
This is why, in practice, the results are always lower. And this is normal! Just look at the product’s actual performance to judge the quality of connection. And in fact, rated results are slightly higher than those of Flybiz with 11 MB / s of bandwidth for download in good conditions, against 9.7 MB / s for Flybiz.
The Maxesla has another advantage: it is a USB 3.0 Type key, standard much more efficient in terms of data transfer – 10 times faster than USB 2.0. If you insert it into a compatible USB 3.0 port, you have great chances to further improve your performance.
The bad thing is installing the driver. In fact, this is a Plug and Play, you should be able to connect your WiFi key and immediately receive the signal. It is therefore better not to install the driver if your computer did not ask you: it-can cause problems of functioning and delay the startup.
The Maxesla is a good option to input range if you want an effective stream at a low price. It lacks some options and more design seriously to deserve a better place in the standings, but it is a solid model if you have a small budget.
5. TP-Link Archer T3U – La Cle Wifi compatible Linux
The TP-Link Archer T3U is the little sister of the newer model, T4U. If the WiFi key date last year, it remains quite relevant: its main advantage, in addition to its value, it is easy to install Linux.
Both say right away, TP Link T3U Archer is no longer the best key Wifi available on the market, but it was probably the case in 2018, due to its excellent value for money at the time. However, if you’re on Linux, it can save you from severe migraines. But before discussing this subject, see what she has in the stomach.
As such, its performance is very classic, with a Dual Band 2.4 and 5GHz compatibility and 1300Mbps to the counter. The real benefit is the boost given by the MU-MIMO technology, which makes it a best performing in real conditions for this price there if your router is also equipped with this technology. Coupled with a USB 3.0 compatibility, you can achieve real bandwidth of over 30 MB / s, despite age (already) an early model.
However, what really makes this wireless key that is worth seeing is its Linux compatibility. The chipset that contains this dongle is produced by Realtek under rtl8812bu serial number.
However, few Wifis keys that contain the chipset, one of the easiest to configure Linux. The interest is twofold. Many private servers run better – or more secure – Linux, but especially the installation of the operating system can cause damage to the wireless card installed in your computer, depending on the model. Find a key compatible WiFi becomes vital to continue to use.
The Linux support this Wifi key is the most complete. To find the command line, simply type “rtl8812bu Linux driver” in your search engine.
In terms of design, this wireless key is very classic. only regret the small cap, small and impossible to connect to the WiFi key, which will risk being quickly lost.
If you are running Mac OS or Windows, the wireless key is not least a good model, on the contrary! But you may prefer the T4U slightly more recent, its sleek design and its new discrete antenna design that increases its actual performance. If you’re on Linux, however, look no further than the WiFi dongle is undoubtedly the most convenient and the most efficient.
6. TP-Link Nano – La cle Wifi compatible Raspberry
Because TP-Link is a leading brand in the field of connectivity, they also produce Wifi key models adapted to very specific situations. This is the case of the latter, which should have the greatest number, but that was also thought for users of Raspberry Pi computers.
The TP-Link Nano is not unlike the Asus Nano: with one exception, it is smaller AGAIN! The WiFi key of this size do not support dual-band technology – and understandably so. In fact, with his only 2.4GHz compatibility, the Nano only deals signal 150Mbps.
However, it has strong actual performance. With the tests that are between 12 and 27 MB / s bandwidth for download tape in good conditions, the performance ratio displayed / real is simply a better market, especially for a price so ridiculously low!
This is where we get the biggest benefit of the TP-Link Nano. Compatibility with Raspberry Pi Raspberry systems are types of computers, very cheap and very small, which can be used in many situations.
In general, a normal user can use it to mount a private server, the uses are endless. A private server runs as a cloud, but you are the only master of its operation and its contents. You can host data and connect to the internet and if you have properly encrypted your network from end to end, no one can have access to it other than physical access to your device.
This is typically why the TP-Link Nano has a big advantage. Being small, you can be sure it will not prevent the use of a different USB port on your Raspberry – which, again, is really a small computer. But above all, its actual performance for download as uploading should allow you to run your network activity without difficulties.
The setup is minimalist, sure: do not expect to host your own streaming system from home. But the ease of installation and the good results are nevertheless one of the best options on the market for the establishment of a Raspberry Pi network.
If you are on Mac OS or PC, you can still get seduced by its very, very small size and comfortable performance. It will be quite sufficient for networked office work, for example, or stream videos in HD. You can imagine, for the competitive online gaming, we must seriously go upmarket: This key costs less than 10 €!
7. Asus AC68 – Best Wifi key for gamers
If you want to use the WiFi key for tasks that require a very considerable amount of bandwidth and we are ready to pay the price, Asus is clearly one of the safest choice. Wifi and key output end 2019 confirms the trend.
The Asus AC68 is a wireless key a little different from what we have seen so far. Unlike most wireless USB adapters, not the option we connect it directly to his computer, but on a suitable base.
The interest is twofold: throughout this comparison, we talked about the efforts of different brands to hide the antenna, make it less cumbersome and maintain the same performance. Asus is not encumbered these considerations with an original solution. Instead of being directly connected to the computer – which remains a possibility – you can connect a USB cradle and ask where the signal is better.
Ideal for enjoying its performance, also exceptional. With a posted capacity 1900 Mbps, distributed in 1300 on the 5GHz frequency and the 2.4GHz 600, this key WiFi dual-band is also equipped with 3 × 4 MIMO technology, the new standard still further optimizes reception and distribution of the Wifi network.
And it is from there that the investment of a wireless key is really relevant if you have not been able to mount your PC yourself, or use a hard modular laptop, wireless card is not necessarily the best. And if some wireless key could compete until then – because of their small size and limitations due to USB standard – Asus can allow you to triple your bandwidth. This is especially true if your initial setup, your laptop or notebook, using an 802.11n standard, common on mid-range models to 2018.
The antenna design is also a great asset. Instead of dismantling, they extend from the body of the adapter Wifi himself: this allowed Asus to improve connectivity between the device and the antennas without the hassle of a specific port. In total, 2 internal and 2 external antennas, which you can place where the signal is the best – slightly elevated, for example.
Like many key wireless recent, however, the performance 2.4GHz are slightly below recommended hopes – although sufficient. This means, in practice, it is better to be placed relatively close to the router for best results – ideally less than 5 meters.
The Asus AC68 is a wireless key best available on the market today. The intelligence of its design is not a plus: it contributes to the performance of the unit. And if other competing models – very few – this makes it a very attractive option, especially if you want to install a wireless key to play online.
8. NetGear NightHawk AC7000 – The best key wireless market
NetGear is a leader of advanced connectivity for several years. Their range of gaming NightHawk notably allows better connectivity for good gaming performance with advanced products from the router to the WiFi card. Their new WiFi dongle is no exception, and this is by far the best model available today.
As Asus AC68, Netgear made a choice of singular design: Wifi key itself is bigger than what we are accustomed. And because it is not connected directly to the computer, but on a base connected to the USB port of this last. Only regret over the Asus: the WiFi key leaves only difficult choice. Indeed, given its unusual size, there are great chances that it prevents you from comfortably install another key.
In terms of performance, it’s not complicated. Netgear has all the current technologies that optimize the signal. Dual-band 2.4GHz to 5GHz-3 × 4 MIMO, through another novelty: DFS support. The DFS allows the 5GHz network to use certain frequencies normally excluded from the user use, and improves even more bandwidth.
With real conditions of performances recorded around 53 MB / s upload and 59 MB / s download, all for a capacity displayed 1300Mbps include an impressive ratio. Rarely is a WiFi key uses a fifth of its capacity, where most are content to one tenth or less.
Its average latency of 3ms is well below what is recommended for the competitive gaming, not to mention the possibilities in terms of stream.
This is by far the best Wifi key to this comparison, especially for a price after all, very affordable compared to other options – such as PCIe cards.
Buying a WiFi key
Buying a wireless key, as many small appliances Hi-tech may seem simple and without fuss. But when one faces the reality of numbers, options, designs, practices, standards, brackets, compatibility, one can quickly feel dizzy. In the area of technology, nothing is as simple as it seems. Good news though: nothing is not beyond the reach of everyone if it is explained clearly.
A wireless key can be useful in many circumstances. Most computer users are quite satisfied with the integrated wireless card; but they may not all be expected to do.
Especially since some computers are today still lacking WiFi card. It may be the case of a PC you built yourself, a Raspberry Pi, or a PC with all components are not compatible with Linux. But you can also have a disappointing or outdated wireless card, using previous standards 802.11ac for example, and can not – or do not want – to disassemble your PC for the change.
In these cases, among the options available to you, installing a wireless key is by far the easiest: just plug in theory, and it behaves like an external wireless key. In fact, there are some subtleties.
The AC performance displayed by manufacturers can be misleading. They do not reflect the bandwidth that you will receive on your computer. For example, a key Wifi 1200Mbps dual band receive probably around 300Mbps on the 2.4GHz band and 900Mbps on the 5GHz band, but it will never reach these scores, it’s impossible.
The only way to check the quality of its reception is to collect tests under real conditions, and favorable. Indeed, numerous factors come into account to get a good connection: the quality conductive materials, design optimization, insulation against interference …
Indeed, a key displaying 1900 Mbps WiFi is more likely to offer better performance than another to 1300 Mbps, but in fact it is not impossible that the opposite will happen.
Beware also not to be confused megabits per second, denoted Mbps, and megabytes per second, denoted MB / s. 96 Bytes per second equivalent to 12MB / s, the upper middle of the Wireless LAN of the French.
The Beamforming, I BURN-MIMO
When you connect multiple devices to your router, a device not equipped with the MU-MIMO will distribute in sequence a little bandwidth to each. This means, in practice, the system will quickly bring down the performance of all, at the risk of allocating too much bandwidth a little greedy device – like a mobile phone – at the expense of a TV box or computer.
The MU-MIMO technology is a solution that manufacturers have found to improve the bandwidth of all users of a home. Instead of this sequential distribution network, it broadcasts to all, simultaneously, the amount of bandwidth required in real time by each device.
But the benefits of this feature requires that wireless receivers themselves are equipped: hence the importance today of selecting a wireless key that has this option in its data sheet. This is obviously not as important if you just want to answer emails or use social networks. But it is essential for the competitive gaming, for example.
Compatibility with OS
Make sure the wireless key you are purchasing is compatible with your OS. If there are some subtleties that point of view with Windows and Mac, things get complicated in the case of Raspberry and Linux – that can use the same core.
If you use this type of OS, to avoid disappointment, look for the model in the compatibility of data bases with your operating system. If it does not appear, you can also look through the model of the chipset, part of the wireless key that may have compatibility issues.
Plug and Play
In the case of Windows and Mac OS, most key Wifi should be called Plug and Play: no drivers required, no tedious installation.
Fair questions Wifi key
What is a Wifi key?
A key Wifi, or wifi adapter is a small device for computers that replaces the WiFi card, normally built into the unit and connected to the motherboard. It captures the wireless network of your choice and connect to the internet.
What is a Wifi key?
There are 5 scenarios where buying a wireless key is relevant.
If the antennas of your integrated wireless card to the computer are of poor quality.
If your integrated WiFi card uses an outdated standard and are looking for better performance.
If your computer is not equipped with a wireless card, or it works poorly or not at all.
If you want to use a computer Raspberry.
If the wireless card in your PC is not compatible with Linux.
In all these cases, the WiFi card can help you reconnect your computer to the network or to substantially improve connectivity performance.
Choose a suitable key with your OS, using the latest wireless standards, tailored to your needs. If you want a key ultra-compact, it will make sacrifices in terms of bandwidth, and it will be more appropriate for conventional use – social networks, video, office. For more intensive uses, such as file upload, maintaining a busy server or gaming, it will choose a higher performance in terms of bandwidth.
How Mbps must have a Wifi key?
This data is variable according to the key, use that you will make and its actual performance.
The data in Mbps mentioned by brands is only an indicator of its ability. Other factors come into account in determining your actual bandwidth, expressed in MB / s. If you want to effectively download several torrents or streaming videos, it is advisable to aim for a minimum of 1300Mbps, provided the WiFi standard is the most recent. For gaming, it is nowadays models that start at 1800Mbps.
Where to buy a Wifi key?
These devices are relatively rare in supermarkets. You can find some models in office stores, but they usually offer a key handle Wifi spread between the entry and midrange. These selections do not reflect the many criteria that come into play to find the wireless key that fits you – compatibility, performance, use …
In fact, it is rather advisable to make an announcement online and search among the thousands of keys Wifi available: there is one for each specific situation.