Today we will be reviewing D-Link COVR 2202 – an AC 2200 Tri-Band Mesh WiFi System. It comes with top-notch specs using Qualcomm chipset, 16MB of RAM and 256MB of storage. On top of that, it also comes with 5 years free McAfee Protection – which is also available on D-LINK DIR-2660 & D-LINK DIR-1360.
This mesh WiFi is designed for UNIFI 800Mbps users to maximize their performance while having superior coverage.
To make things even more interesting, it is also the cheapest AC 2200 available in the market. It was awarded as the Best Mesh Networking System in Tech Award 2019 by HardwareZone.
In this review, we will be finding out how well is this device’s coverage by running isolated node tests to see if it provides superior coverage and better speed.
Unboxing D-LINK COVR 2202 – What’s Inside
It comes with:
- Warranty Card
- Quick Install Card
- 2 units 2 Pin Power Plugs
- RG45 Ethernet Cable
- 2 units of D-LINK COVR-2202
Key Features & Benefits
D-LINK COVR-2202 comes in two pack units only, which you may add on more units as you see fit in the future. Do take note this system uses a master-slave system where COVR Point A needs to be connected to your router or modem directly.
It comes with two-gigabit ports, a power socket, on-off button and not forgetting the WPS button.
Hardware & Specifications
|Ethernet Ports||2 x Gigabit Ports|
|Wi-Fi Radios||Up to 866Mbps (5GHz) x 2 / Up to 300 Mbps (2.4GHz)|
|Dimensions||90 x 100 x 200 mm|
|Coverage Area||Up to 6,000 sq. ft. ( 2-pack )|
High-Performance Tri-Band WiFi
Other than the top-notch specs like Qualcomm chipset, it also comes with 11ac Wave 2 MU-MIMO where you get more power to support multiple devices especially in data-intensive tasks like 4K-streaming, VR-gaming, and file sharing simultaneously.
Above all – this is a Tri-Band WiFi mesh system which is a huge selling point.
The simplest analogy to understand how this works is to imagine a 3 lane highway versus 2 lane highway, by arranging a dedicated lane for return, you will get an optimized traffic flow that wouldn’t be congested by the cars.
Simply put, because you have lessened traffic on the road, it makes everything moves faster. In other words – you will get faster speed and stable connections at all times.
It comes with six powerful antennas that are capable of covering up to 6,000 sq. ft. When we tested this device in a double-story house, we did not notice any WiFi dead zones, needless to say, it is more than enough to cover for the whole house.
Smart Roaming & Smart Steering
If you are on a router and extender combo, you will face scenarios where you have to manually swap WiFi SSIDs when you are moving between rooms.
With Smart Roaming & Smart Steering, you can move between rooms, stay connected and be assigned to the strongest frequency signal automatically. This means you can enjoy your videos without buffers, lags or any interruptions to your wireless connection.
Oh, and you no longer need to hide in a spot for the “strongest” WiFi signal.
5 Years Free McAfee Protection
Just like the D-LINK Exo Series, COVR 2202 also comes with 5 years free McAfee Protection – which offers network-level protection. All your IP Cameras, Smart Sensors, Smartphones – as long as they are connected to your WiFi network – they are protected.
Not only that, but you will also get to download Mcafee Livesafe for all of your devices at no additional costs, if you have 10 devices, just download and use. This bundle offers you a network-level protection and unlimited devices protection.
How To Install & Setup COVR-2202?
Here are a few quick reminders before we proceed with the installation:
- Make sure you have your ISP credentials ready as you will need to setup your PPPoE connection
- Take the D-LINK quick install card with you.
- Download the D-LINK Wi-Fi App
- Follow the in-app instructions step-by-step.
As it goes by a master-slave system, make sure that to use the COVR Point A to connect directly to your modem or router, here is how the label looks like:
The setup process is simple and straight forward, we noticed a lot of setup failures come from being too nervous (or fast fingers that kept tapping next), so make sure you follow the instructions thoroughly.
For example, if it says blinking orange, just wait for the device to blink orange before you tap next. Here’s how it looks like:
Once the configuration is done, you are required to set up your ISP connection by filling up the ISP details – for example, if you’re using UNIFI, select UNIFI, if you’re using Maxis select Maxis, so on so forth.
You will also need to set up your own network SSID password and devices password. Once everything is configured properly, COVR 2202 will automatically reboot with a congratulatory screen.
Speed Test – Single Node vs Double Node Comparison
We wanted to find out if COVR 2202 performs better in terms of coverage and WiFi speed when they are both used together. As this is an AC2200 Tri-Band model, technically speaking, it should provide a better WiFi speed than other Dual Band units. Our hypothesis is that it will provide a much faster speed on various locations – provided you are using both nodes together.
Do take note that as we are on a UNIFI 300Mbps plan, hence the device is somehow capped on the speed. These test results are not conclusive but more of a reference when you are making purchases.
Here’s how we will run the test – we will place the main node on the first-floor living hall and the other unit in the second-floor mini living hall. We will then run isolated tests at different locations to find out if the performance really differs between a single node and double node.
So here’s the result for single-node performance, we are getting decent speed on the first floor. We can reach up to 289 Mbps on download. Do take note that we are on a UNIFI 300 Mbps plan. So the speed is decent but on the second floor, it is terrible as we are only getting 20 Mbps in certain rooms.
Here’s the test performance when we place an additional node on the second floor. We are now getting consistently more than 150 Mbps throughout the house.
Overall D-LINK COVR 2202 does provide superior coverage and WiFi stability when you are using both nodes together. We had some difficulty finding the best spot to place the second node as we are limited by power plugs, but we are still having decent speed across the house.
If you are looking for an upgrade for your WiFi network, do consider D-LINK COVR 2202 as it is the cheapest AC2200 Mesh WiFi system available in the market that is a Tri-Band model capable of supporting 800Mbps plan.