5 Top Picks
30 Hours of Research
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Do you have several wired devices, a single network, and no way to connect them? Are you struggling to deliver optimal internet access across all your devices to share information? Having a seamless wired connection at home or your workplace can save time and energy.
This is why it’s crucial that you get lifesaving hardware network devices, such as splitters and switches. They allow for the smooth flow of data between your devices and the network. Having the best ethernet splitter and switch can be a lifesaver, along with top-rated ethernet cables to carry the data.
Just think about it, what good is the best internet provider in your area if you're using a slow wi-fi router? It makes much more sense to utilize a switch and quality ethernet cables for fastest possible download, upload or gameplay.
Let’s review the 5 best ethernet splitters on the market and see how they can improve your network.
3 Top Ethernet Splitters
The D-Link DGS-105 LAN switch is a top-quality buy. It’s durable and made to withstand use for extended periods.
Ethernet splitters are used to expand and improve on a network, and this one does a superb job of doing just that.
The Netgear 8-Ports Gigabit GS208 LAN switch works to linkt various devices within a Local Area Network (LAN).
It works to boost the networking ability of computers, gaming systems, or servers. For console gamers, you will need an adapter, like ones we covered in our ethernet adapter for Switch reviews.
The Netgear 8-Ports GS308 LAN switch is easy to install and set up. As with similar user-friendly switches, it needs no configuration or special software.
I found its mounting options versatile and user-friendly. Its small size and metal body housing also made it possible to place it on a desk or mount it on the wall.
What to Look For in an Ethernet Splitter
All ethernet splitters are basically designed in the same way. They have two ports on one side and a single port on the opposite side. They come in handy when you have a couple of devices that need to share a single network. Yet they aren’t ideal if you’re looking to connect multiple devices.
Another possible drawback is that splitters restrict network speeds to 100Mbps. This may be adequate for checking social media, web browsing, and even online gaming. However, it’s inefficient if more than four devices are using it to share large work files or live stream videos.
Best Ethernet Splitter Product Reviews
[Best Ethernet Splitter Overall]
The D-Link DGS-105 LAN switch is a top-quality buy. It’s durable and made to withstand use for extended periods. Ethernet splitters are used to expand and improve on a network, and this one does a superb job of doing just that.
The DGS-105 has 5 ports for added versatility and ease of use. I was able to connect my laptop, printer, and gaming system with no problem. It doesn’t require any special configuration and the setup was hassle-free.
One quality I especially liked is that the DGS-105 supports auto-MDI/MDIX. This feature senses automatically when it needs to do a crossover. So there’s no need to buy any crossover cables.
It also complies with the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) 802.3az specifications. This feature helps direct high-priority traffic and assign it to the port with the heaviest workload.
There’s also the Quality of Service (QoS) technology that allocates proper network capacity for data in limited networks.
Another quality I appreciated is how power efficient this switch is. With the help of Green Ethernet Technology, it can detect when a port isn’t being used and shuts it down. Also known as power Efficient Ethernet (EEE), this hi-tech feature lowers the power consumption during times of low network traffic.
The DGS-105 switch features LED lights that change color depending on the throughput. It turns green when the port is successfully connected to a 1000Mbps device. If the switch is connected to a device that’s 100Mbps or 10Mbps, the LED light will turn amber. It’ll also keep blinking as long as the devices are sending or transmitting data.
The only drawback I found is that this switch has sharp edges, which can be a safety hazard. The good news is that it comes with a wall-mount kit. So you can easily mount it safely out of the way.
D-Link Ethernet Switch Pros
D-Link Ethernet Switch Cons
[Best For The Money]
The Netgear 8-Ports Gigabit GS208 LAN switch works to connect various devices within a Local Area Network (LAN). It works to boost the networking ability of computers, gaming systems, or servers.
In my personal experience, this switch doesn’t disappoint. It’s well-made, provides reliable Ethernet speeds, and is budget-friendly.
This switch is designed for versatility. It’s compatible with a wide range of networking devices. Plugging in the cables was hassle-free and easy. There’s no specific port for either the source or outlet cable. So you can plug any network cable into any port without confusion or fuss.
On the front side of the switch, there are eight LED green lights. They indicate which port is being used, its link speeds, and power status.
The GS208 switch has a nice, compact design, which I like. I placed it on my desk, and I also mounted it on the wall. It looked great and didn’t take up hardly any room. Another great feature is its fan-free design. This allows for quiet operation noise, but it still manages not to overheat.
This switch is capable of enhancing file sharing, video streaming, and online gaming. To make sure data goes where it needs to go, the GS208 supports IEEE standards. It’s a great feature that reduces energy consumption when traffic flow is light, or there’s no activity at all. It also features an auto-MDI/MDIX, which eliminates the need for crossover cables.
One feature I like is its ability to boost ethernet speeds by up to 10 times more than other traditional switches. This feature is one reason why it’s been called one of the ‘best ethernet switches’ of 2022. Plus, its affordable price makes the GS208 a best-buy ethernet splitter.
The one thing I didn’t care for is the LED lights. They don’t change according to rated power, or connectivity, like other switches. They only flash a green color.
Netgear 8-Ports GS208 Ethernet Switch Pros
Netgear 8-Ports GS208 Ethernet Switch Cons
[Best For The Low Operation Noise]
The Netgear 8-Port GS308 LAN switch is easy to install and set up. As with similar user-friendly switches, it needs no configuration or special software.
I found its mounting options versatile and user-friendly. Its small size and metal housing also made it possible to place it on a desk or mount it on the wall.
The GS308 features a fan-free design for low operation noise. This makes it ideal for noise-sensitive environments, such as home offices and small offices or businesses.
One feature I really like is its energy-efficient design. It supports IEEE 802.3az Power Efficient Ethernet mode, which optimizes power usage. The GS308 switch also supports auto-MDI/MDIX, eliminating the need for crossover cables.
On the front, you’ll find eight ports, each with its own LED indicator light. These lights make it easy to pinpoint which port is active, flashing green when the speed is 1000Mbps and yellow at 10 or 100Mbps.
Although I was happy with many of its features, I found the GS308 to be the heaviest on this list. It was slightly inconvenient when I was mounting it or moving it.
Netgear 8-Ports GS308 Ethernet Switch Pros
Netgear 8-Ports GS308 Ethernet Switch Cons
The TP-Link 8-Ports TL-SG1008D ethernet network switch is high-powered and efficient. It consists of several high-tech features to allow for quick and reliable data transfer.
One feature that impressed me with this switch is its curvy, stylish design. It can be set on top of your desk for a sleek look or mounted on the wall.
The TL-SG1008D supports IEEE 802.3x Power Efficient Ethernet mode. This feature minimizes excess carbon footprints any time it detects extra power consumption and reduces the power usage of unused ports. Plus, it does away with the need for crossover cables with its auto-MDI/MDIX.
On the front of the unit, you’ll find a power indicator. There are eight LED activity indicators, one for each port. The ports are located on the back, with the power outlet.
Its fan-free design reduces idle power loss. Plus, it keeps the operating noise level to a minimum.
One feature I disliked was the TL-SG1008D seemed to slow down when I connected only single device to the switch. While no one would really use the switch for only one device, it bothered me a little bit.
TP-Link 8-Ports Gigabit Ethernet Switch Pros
TP-Link 8-Ports Gigabit Ethernet Switch Cons
The Zyxel 8-Ports GS108BV3 LAN switch is best known for its sturdy metal design and versatility. Its compact design makes it easy for wall mounting or a desktop setup. After that, connect the cables, and you’re all set.
- Metal housing
- Supports IEEE 802.3az standards
- 8 Gigabit ports
- Supports Auto-MDI/MDIX
- Fanless design
- Weight: 13.5 ounces
- Dimensions: 5 x 4 0.75 inches
One feature I liked was the four QoS ports with assigned priority mechanisms. These mechanisms enhance traffic flow and transfer data to the port that needs it the most. Best of all, the connection didn’t slow down. To gauge power and connectivity strength, there are eight status LED lights next to each port.
Like the other switches I’ve mentioned, the GS108BV3 supports auto-MDI/MDIX in all eight ports. It’s also in compliance with the 802.3az EEE energy-saving specifications.
Another feature I liked is the LED indicators on the front of the unit. They allowed me to check out the activity status of each port quickly. It’s a feature that boosts this switch’s productivity. It flashes yellow for gigabit ethernet speed and orange for fast ethernet speed.
Zyxel 8-Ports Gigabit Ethernet Switch Pros
Zyxel 8-Ports Gigabit Ethernet Switch Cons
Types of Ethernet Port Splitters
Ethernet cable splitters are all affordable and user-friendly. They’re known as ‘passive’ gadgets that don't require external power to operate.
What differentiates them is the type of cables used. The best types are the Cat (short for ‘category’) 5 cables or newer. The most recent standard in ethernet cables is Cat8, which is backward compatible with all previous models. You can also use older ethernet cables, but that can further reduce the connection speed.
Ethernet Splitters Should Meet Your Needs in Terms of Ports and Speed
A single ethernet cable splitter features three ports in all. The two ports connect the router or switch with the network splitter, while the side with the port is the one connected to the wall jack. In the other room, a second splitter connects one network cable to the wall jack. On the other side, two cables are used to connect more than one device.
Since splitters work in pairs to complete the distribution process, this divides the signal even further and reduces network speeds. One way to maintain adequate speeds is to use up-to-date ethernet cables, as Cat5 and higher.
Ethernet Switch vs. Splitter vs. Hub?
There are other alternative tools that can broaden and distribute a network between more than one device. Let’s take a look at this ethernet splitter vs. switch vs. hub comparison.
Technical Specs You Should Look For
The two ports on a splitter share a common network via the 100BASE-T standard for ethernet cables that were first introduced in 1995. It was soon followed by the 100BASE-TX.
Both of these are types of standards for implementing Gigabit Ethernet network connections that transmit data at 100Mbps. This connection is currently being used as the basis of many business networks.
What’s an ethernet switch?
Here's my quick answer. A LAN or ethernet switch is a high-speed device that eases traffic flow between the router and various gadgets.
Switches can have anywhere from five to fifty ports. Choose the switch, depending on how many wired devices you want to connect. Then, you have to think about the types of cables to use. Cat5 cables all the way to Cat7 are all 100 meters. To get a longer run, you’ll need to put another router in-between to reach farther.
There are also two types of switches to choose from: managed and unmanaged switches. Managed switches are better suited for advanced users who want to tweak the settings and take control of the network.
Unmanaged switches are no-hassle, user-friendly. To operate, simply connect the cables, and the switch will automatically take care of everything. A switch’s versatility makes it ideal for office buildings, campuses, or in large households.
We should take the time to mention the third type of device: ethernet hubs. They also transmit network data across a few devices. Yet, they’re considered slower and more outdated than switches. Ethernet hubs are best used with a small network and limited gadgets.
Setting It Up: Plug-and-Play Rules
Most splitters are easy to set up. You don’t need an external power supply source to operate them and no software installation needed. Simply connect the network cable to the required slot, and you’re done!
Switches and hubs, on the other hand, need a power adapter to supply them with the energy they need to operate. Yet, they both function via plug-and-play features, the same as splitters.
1. What is the best ethernet splitter?
Here are the Top Ethernet Splitters that we can recommend.
1. D-Link Ethernet Switch - The D-Link DGS-105 LAN switch is a top-quality buy. It’s durable and made to withstand use for extended periods.
Ethernet splitters are used to expand and improve on a network, and this one does a superb job of doing just that.
2. Netgear 8-Ports GS208 Ethernet Switch - The Netgear 8-Ports Gigabits GS208 LAN switch works to connect various gadgets within a Local Area Network (LAN).
The device works to boost the networking ability of computers, gaming systems, or servers. For console gamers, you will need an adapter, like ones we covered in our ethernet adapter for Switch reviews.
3. Netgear 8-Ports GS308 Ethernet Switch - The Netgear 8-Ports GS308 LAN switch is easy to install and set up. As with similar user-friendly switches, it needs no manual configurations or special software. I found its mounting options versatile and user-friendly. Its compact size and metal housing also made it possible to place it on a desk or mount it on the wall.
2. Are Ethernet splitters good?
Ethernet splitters are useful for connecting two devices that are located in a different room from the source of the main signal. They help conserve cables, network wall outlets, and, in most cases, provide reliable connections. As previously stated, ethernet splitters are sold in pairs.
3. Do Ethernet couplers reduce speed?
No, Ethernet couplers do not reduce speed. They are used to connect two Ethernet cables together, which allows for the transfer of data between the two cables.
4. How do I split an Ethernet cable between two computers?
At one end of an existing Ethernet cable, a splitter connects to 2 ports on a router or switch. This enables the two router ports to share a single standard UTP Ethernet cable with a maximum data transfer rate of 100 Mbps. A second splitter at the other end of the ethernet cable can provide Ethernet ports for two devices.
5. Can you run two devices off one Ethernet?
Yes, you can by using an Ethernet splitter, or more precisely, an Ethernet switch. These different devices are capable of taking a single incoming Ethernet connection and making it available to many users concurrently.