I have a Buffalo wireless access point, and while it’s not as ugly as other brands, it doesn’t really fit the decor of the house. I’ve had it in the basement for the last couple years, and it’s been ok. I use GKrellM to tell me my wireless quality. I don’t really know what scale it’s using, but I usually get 25 somethings on my couch. Back when I used a pcmcia card with no antenna, I used to get 18-20. When I’m sitting right next to the WAP, I get about a 35.
The other day I took my laptop out on the deck to work, and noticed I was getting 0-3, which was a pain. Then my wife wanted to listen to streaming MLB on the lawn while she worked, and I had to drag ethernet out there to make it work. That’s when I decided to move it upstairs.
Now it’s next to the TV, and on my couch I get 35, and I’m on the lawn right now getting 10-18, which is plenty for streaming. I haven’t tried the deck yet, but I suspect it’ll be even better, since the WAP is on the other side of the TV right now, pointed at the deck.