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Router question and advice

Router question and advice

Postby phileysmiley » Tue Jul 28, 2009 7:31 pm

I currently have this router:
http://www.motorola.com/Business/XP-EN/ ... %252CXP-EN

I have a network with 2 wired and 1 wireless PC.

I have 16 Mbps speeds with Comcast PowerBoost to 20 Mbps.

I am getting a speed increase on Thursday to 22 Mbps and boost to 30 Mbps.

The technican told me that although I will have no problem getting the increased speeds using my wired connections, that the router may be maxed out using my wireless connection at 22-30 and that I should get an N-Band router to take advantage of the higher speeds on the wireless connection.

Also, I will have the option of increasing from 22 Mbps to 50 Mbps for an additional charge per month of $30 (the increase from 16 to 22 is free).

Is it true that I need an N-Band router for faster wireless speeds? And if it is, can anyone recommend a good N-Band router for not a lot more than $100? I have used Linksys routers in the past and am now using Netopia (now Motorola).

P.S. In a few months they are offering wireless 4G:
http://www.comcast.com/About/PressRelea ... x?PRID=887
I pay $60/month now with the AT&T aircard. Comcast's 4G will be $30/month with the plan I have.
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Re: Router question and advice

Postby mnemonicj » Tue Jul 28, 2009 10:36 pm

Wireless G, or 802.11g, or 54Mbps Wifi will have about 20 - 28Mbps throughput maximum with wireless encryption enabled. I get about 22 - 23Mbps with WPA enabled and about 15 to 30 feet from my wireless G router.

Wireless N, or 802.11n, or 300Mbps Wifi will give you a speed increase over 802.11g, but only if all of your wireless devices are 802.11n devices. The throughput of 802.11n devices is supposed to be more than or equal to 100Mbps.

If you don't want to change all of your wireless devices over to 802.11n due to the expense, there is a way around this while still being able to get the 100Mbps speeds. Some 802.11n routers are dual band (2.4GHz and 5GHz) while 802.11g devices are only single band (2.4GHz). If you set up your dual band router to operate the 802.11g devices on the 2.4GHz band and the 802.11n devices to operate on the 5GHz band, you should be able to get full speeds out of all of your devices, respective to their maximum speeds, and they will not interfere with each other.
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Re: Router question and advice

Postby phileysmiley » Wed Jul 29, 2009 1:13 am

So I have been able to determine that the router I have now is 802.11g. So is my old laptop.

The laptop I will be using for wireless says Intel WiFi Link 5100AGN 802.11a/g/n in the specs. I suppose that means it's N (with backwards compatibility). So I do need an N router.

But I still want to use my old laptop to connect wirelessly, too. So I'd need a dual-band?
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Re: Router question and advice

Postby mnemonicj » Wed Jul 29, 2009 2:55 am

Is the laptop the only device you will connect wirelessly with your router? If so, don't worry about replacing your wireless card in your laptop with the dual band wireless card just yet. I connect a laptop, my cell phone, two wireless ethernet converters, and a Wii to my router over 802.11g. So if I were to upgrade to 802.11n, it would be in my best interests to do a dual band router, but you might be able to get away with just a cheaper single band router.

But, if you would eventually like to go with dual band, you could buy a dual band 802.11n router now and upgrade your laptop card when you want to, but still be able to get faster speeds with the single band 2.4GHz for now.

Just to make sure you understand this, you can get faster speeds using a single band 2.4GHz 802.11n router, but your speeds may be as low as 50Mbps maximum throughput. This is still about double the throughput of a 802.11g router. The reason for this is because the high speed 802.11n uses two non-interfering channels to reach full speed. On a 2.4GHz router, there are only 3 non-interfering channels total (1, 6, and 11). If you have other nearby devices that use the 2.4GHz band (cordless phone, neighbor's wifi, etc.) your speeds could be affected by the congestion. The 5GHz band has more channels and almost nothing operates at that band, so there is much less chance for interference. If you have one good channel on the 2.4GHz band now, you should be able to double your speeds using 802.11n single band with your current laptop card.
Last edited by mnemonicj on Wed Jul 29, 2009 3:02 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Router question and advice

Postby phileysmiley » Wed Jul 29, 2009 3:00 am

Yes, just the laptop(s). But I'm only concerned about the new one. I have no intention of upgrading the card in the old one. It's just a backup.

I just need to be able get as much of the 50 Mbps to my new laptop as possible. And hopefully still be able to use the old one.

I think you're giving me more information than I need though, and you lost me there.

I just need to know if I need a 802.11n router in order to get the 22-50 speeds I'll be upgrading to. The laptop card is a/g/n compatible. The older laptop is g.

Do I have to get a dual band router in order for both laptops to work or will both work with a one-band router?
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Re: Router question and advice

Postby mnemonicj » Wed Jul 29, 2009 7:09 am

I think if you get a single band 802.11n router and upgrade the card from the old laptop to a 802.11n wireless card, you will be able to get the 50Mbps. If you get the single band 802.11n router and do not upgrade the wireless card on the old laptop, when that laptop is connected to the router, your newer laptop with 802.11n may get knocked back down to the 22-30Mbps speeds.

So if you want to get your 50Mbps connection to you new laptop, it would be in your best interests to get a single band 802.11n router and upgrade the wireless card on the old laptop to a 802.11n card. That way every wireless device will be communicating at the higher speeds and there won't be any 802.11g devices to slow down your wireless network.

But, if you rarely use the old laptop and don't mind the old laptop's wireless card slowing down the network because it is rarely connected, then you don't need to upgrade the old laptop's wireless card. It depends on how often you use the old laptop and if you care that it may slow down your wireless network only when connected.
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Re: Router question and advice

Postby NT50 » Wed Jul 29, 2009 3:17 pm

Larry

With the setup you have now and NOT having to change any cards in your computers, you will have to get a dual ban router in or for your backup computer to connect.

Per say: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.a ... 6833320031

By the way, I liek ASUS routers as my #2 choice.
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Re: Router question and advice

Postby phileysmiley » Wed Jul 29, 2009 4:01 pm

NT50 wrote:Larry

With the setup you have now and NOT having to change any cards in your computers, you will have to get a dual ban router in or for your backup computer to connect.

Per say: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.a ... 6833320031

By the way, I liek ASUS routers as my #2 choice.

Okay, thanks guys. I think I have it sorted out now. I definitely am not going to sink any more money into the old laptop to upgrade the card. And I do not want to slow down my speed on the new one. So there are only 2 ways I can get the higher speeds on the new laptop:

1) Get a single band router and keep the old laptop connection off unless I really need it
2) Get a dual-band router

Since the router at Newegg is so cheap I don't see any reason not to get a dual-band router then. I thought they were more $$ than that.
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Re: Router question and advice

Postby imnuts » Wed Jul 29, 2009 4:01 pm

If you're going to get an 802.11n router, I'd personally wait until September as that is when the final specification is going to be released as all current products are only using draft revisions. While I doubt there will be much of any change, I'd still wait.
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Re: Router question and advice

Postby phileysmiley » Wed Jul 29, 2009 4:05 pm

imnuts wrote:If you're going to get an 802.11n router, I'd personally wait until September as that is when the final specification is going to be released as all current products are only using draft revisions. While I doubt there will be much of any change, I'd still wait.

Thanks. I think it will probably work out that way anyway. Tomorrow they bring me the new modem to allow my speed to go to 22 for free (30 PowerBoost). So I should be fine with 802.11g for now.

I think I should try that speed for a month to see if it performs as promised. So that takes me into September anyway (and I am away September 10-18).

So if I decide to upgrade to the 50 speed it won't be until late September. That's when I'd need the n router.
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