Router Charts

Click for Router Charts

Router Ranker

Click for Router Ranker

NAS Charts

Click for NAS Charts

NAS Ranker

Click for NAS Ranker

More Tools

Click for More Tools

LAN & WAN Reviews

Introduction

Cisco Linksys PLE400 and PLS400 Powerline AV adapters

At a Glance
Product - Cisco Linksys PLE400 Powerline AV 1-Port Network Adapter (PLEK400 - kit of 2)
- Cisco Linksys PLS400 Powerline AV 4-Port Network Adapter (PLSK400 - kit of 2)
Summary 200 Mbps HomePlug AV powerline adapters based on Broadcom chipsets
Pros • Can provide higher throughput than other HomePlug AV devices
Cons • No powerline quality LED
• Not available as single adapters

Cisco recently got back into powerline networking with the release of two 200 Mbps HomePlug AV adapters. Cisco told me they elected to stay with 200 Mbps powerline while most other vendors have also fielded 500 Mbps Homeplug AV compatible adapters because Homeplug AV is an approved standard while 500 Mbps powerline is not.

At any rate, Cisco now has the PLE400 Powerline AV 1-Port Network Adapter and PLS400 Powerline AV 4-Port Network Adapter, which come in two kits. The PLEK400 contains two PLE400s, while the PLSK400 contains one PLE400 and one four-port PLS400. The adapters come only in these kits—you can't buy single adapters.

The HomePlug Certified Products database shows the individual adapters and their kits as Homeplug AV Certified. And the product boxes even display the HomePlug AV Certification logo.

Like other 200 Mbps powerline adapters, the Ethernet ports on both products are 10/100, not Gigabit. And while you can't find this spec on the product webpages, the label on each adapter shows a 100 - 240 VAC rating.

Figure 1 from the product support page FAQ, shows the usual Power, Ethernet and Powerline lights. But unlike other current powerline adapters I've seen, the Powerline indicator doesn't change color to indicate link quality.

PLE400/PLS400 lights, buttons, ports

Figure 1: PLE400/PLS400 lights, buttons, ports

Inside

Peeking inside powerline adapters has gotten kind of boring, since everything I've reviewed to date has used the same Qualcomm Atheros chipsets. So I expected to see the INT6400 / INT1400 chipset I found in most of the adapters in the HomePlug AV Adapter Roundup.

I was quite surprised, then, by my first sighting of Broadcom-based powerline designs! Both adapters use a Broadcom BCM60321 Powerline Networking SoC. Qualcomm Atheros-based designs have separate analog front-end and digital chips. But Broadcom has opted to combine both in one device with good results, as you'll see in the Performance section.

Inside the PLE400

Figure 2: Inside the PLE400

The PLS400 has a BCM53101 7 port managed 10/100 Roboswitch to provide the four-port 10/100 switch, while the PLE400 has a Broadcom BCM5241 single port 10/100 Ethernet PHY. An unspecified amount of RAM is inside the BCM60321 and I saw 1 MB of Macronix flash on the PLE400 board (to the left of the BCM60321 in Figure 2). I suspect the PLS400 has the same amount of flash, probably on the underside of the board, which is soldered to the plug prongs that are fixed to the case.

Inside the PLS400

Figure 3: Inside the PLS400

More LAN & WAN

Wi-Fi System Tools
Check out the new Wi-Fi System Charts, Ranker and Finder!

Top Ranked Routers

Support Us!

If you like what we do and want to thank us, just buy something on Amazon. We'll get a small commission on anything you buy. Thanks!

Over In The Forums

My router is ac87u, firmware 380.67 I use fast pendrive as ftp and ipad in my lan. Speed up from ftp to lan i have up to 35MB / s but when i turn on t...
I have a 4G dongle connected to the USB port, no double wan connection. 4G is my only way to get internet. I use android mode. How do I enable upnp on...
I have just upgraded the firmware version from 380.67 to 380.68. However, when I opened the setting page, the side bar which should be full of tabs (S...
I have a 4G modem from ZTE with 2 antenna connectors. I bought a home antenna with mimo that’s supposed to get me 7-8 dB extra gain. Connecting it act...
I just notice that for some reason limiting my wifi to 15 mbit, put cpu usage at 70-90%, which i dont really remeber it ever use that much cpu for jus...

Don't Miss These

  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
Get Backblaze Now!