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It's not often that powerline technology gets me excited, most of us use X10 and we know it has short commings. This is different though. The ATL60142E wont turn your lights on and off, it wont close the curtains at night, but what it will do is provide you with a network connection. So what is so special about that I hear you cry. Well, the ATL60142E will provide this network connection anywhere that you have a power socket in the wall. That's right, it uses powerline technology to provide network connectivity...

The ATL60142E is quite a small object, measuring about 12cm wide, 2.5cm high and 10cm deep, though suprisingly quite heavy for a small object.

I've only had my ATL60142E's for about a day but based on that all I can say its that they do the job, and they do it quite well. Setting up is a breeze, when the units are delivered they are in 'bridge mode'. This mode allows you to plug the ATL60142E into a hub or switch, when they are in 'Host mode' they can be plugged directly into a PC ethernet card, and thoughtfully you do get a cable included. At this point it is worth mentioning that in the documentation it states that "there can be only 2" units in bridge mode on a network, however there is no limitation on the number of nodes (host mode) connections.

The ATL60142E also has encryption which is set via the included software, and by default is turned on - although you will most likely want to change the default password for this.

In terms of speed the ATL60142E seems close to that of a wireless network card, I will provide more details on this after some more testing has taken place, I do know that these units will be pressed into service imediately so that SWMBO can have a PC in the livingroom for work (victory!! :D )

Of course I could hear you all at the beginning of this saying that they would probably kill an X10 singnal dead. Not so, in fact I had a DDAR working off the unit and X10 functions perfectly well with no glitches or spurious X10 signals.

Of course there is a price to pay, at 150 US Dollars each and as you need a minimum of 2 units this isn't the cheapest solution, but it is a plug in and go solution. I've also asked for some idea of (dare I say it) bulk buy prices and they are a little more encouraging...

Qty: unit cost
20: 120 US Dollars
50: 115 US Dollars
100: 105 US Dollars
500: 95 US Dollars