WiFi Booster vs WiFi Repeater | difference between wifi repeater and wifi booster

This page compares wifi repeater vs wifi booster and describes difference between wifi repeater and wifi booster. It covers basics of wifi repeater and booster including their definitions and working in order to derive difference between wifi repeater and wifi booster.

Any device which works as per WLAN standards is referred as WiFi Device. As we know different WLAN standards such as 802.11a, 11b, 11g, 11n, 11ac and 11ad have got different distance coverage and data rate limits as per modulation technique employed.

Any wireless signal will get attenuated when they travel from one place (i.e. transmitter) to the other (i.e. receiver). The attenuation varies based on frequency and distance signal will go through. This is also referred as path loss and it depends on Friis Formula. The Friis formula is mentioned below.

WiFi internet architecture

Pr =Pt * Gt * Gr * (lambda/4*pi*R)2
Refer RF Link Budget >> for more information.

The basic difference between wifi booster and wifi repeater is that booster amplifies the wifi signal while repeater amplifies as well as does channel frequency conversion before signal is transmitted.

Let us take example of wifi channels in 2.4 GHz frequency band in order to understand difference between wifi repeater and wifi booster. This band supports total of 14 channels spaced 5 MHz apart. As per this channel-1 is about 2412 MHz frequency and Channel-3 is about 2422MHz frequency.

Wifi channels
Image courtesy: Aerohive Networks

WiFi Repeater

WiFi repeater receives the signal at channel-1, amplifies it and transmits the signal on channel-3.

WiFi booster

WiFi booster receives and transmits the signal at the same channel frequency and only does amplification.

Refer basic function of repeater used in VHF, UHF and microwave communication.


WLAN tutorial
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WLAN standards-11a,11b,11g,11n,11ac
11a WLAN Physical layer
11b WLAN Physical layer
11n WLAN Physical layer
WLAN 802.11-ac
WLAN 802.11-ad
Difference between 11a,11b,11g,11n
WLAN router providers
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