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Wireless router


Vegas Halo Fan

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Right now I am running a Linksys Wireless G router on my home network. It has delivered solid performance, but with bandwidth-hungry additions like iPhones and Netflix streaming video, it's time to upgrade. My question is whether I should go to Wireless N or AC. I have read several articles on the topic that have cleared up nothing. I am interested in any experiences any of you have with either or both. 

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I would go with AC, it is the newest wifi band and it puts you current instead of buying a router that is already old tech.  There are some suggestions in the Airport Extreme thread for routers.

Are many devices AC ready though? I am in no way tech savy so this is the 1st I've heard about that band?

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Some of the newer devices coming out are AC.  Would you rather buy a N router now and in two years upgrade to an AC or just get the AC router now?  Seems to make a lot more sense to spend the extra 75 bucks and get the AC router now.

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Isn't the data throughput ratings on the N and AC standards pointless if your Download speeds from your ISP are less than 54 Mbps? G is rated at 54 Mbps, and N can get into the hundreds, I have no idea how high AC goes, but unless you're transferring LARGE amounts of data between devices within your OWN wireless network it's just overkill. 

 

 

Unless N or AC have better range/security standards I don't see the point within the residential environment. Most houses are well below 54 mb down speeds from their ISP.

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AC provides faster throughput but also at a greater distance (ie range).

AC uses 5Ghz range, which is considered "quiet" because not many things use it (vs 2.4 which is very crowded).

Lastly AC does beam-forming (think of a straight beam to your device, vs a concave wave signal out in all directions).

 

AC is the future. If you are upgrading right now, just get one. Without AC devices it won't be utilized, but eventually you likely will get some devices that will utilize. 

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Isn't the data throughput ratings on the N and AC standards pointless if your Download speeds from your ISP are less than 54 Mbps? G is rated at 54 Mbps, and N can get into the hundreds, I have no idea how high AC goes, but unless you're transferring LARGE amounts of data between devices within your OWN wireless network it's just overkill. 

 

 

Unless N or AC have better range/security standards I don't see the point within the residential environment. Most houses are well below 54 mb down speeds from their ISP.

 

If you are copying from one device to another the speed of your ISP doesn't matter.

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If you are copying from one device to another the speed of your ISP doesn't matter.

That's exactly what I'm saying. LAN speed within the home is largely irrelevant.

Chimi, if your ISP is giving you a download speed of 20 mobs all devices on wifi share that speed regardless except when sending data directly to one another.

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Are you actually transferring data between devices?

 

Not very often. My main concerns are internet speeds and streaming video without screen freezes. Sometimes the G router does fine on Netflix, and other times it seems to stop every few minutes. I know that a lot of variables go into this, but a G router is pretty clearly overtaxed with these kinds of data demands.

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AC provides faster throughput but also at a greater distance (ie range).

AC uses 5Ghz range, which is considered "quiet" because not many things use it (vs 2.4 which is very crowded).

Lastly AC does beam-forming (think of a straight beam to your device, vs a concave wave signal out in all directions).

 

Point #2 is the one that catches my attention the most. With far fewer devices (and competing transmissions) in the 5 gHz range, theoretically at least, there should be less interference with the transmission.

Edited by Vegas Halo Fan
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Hah, AC is definitely being adopted.  With wifi, almost all bands have been successful.  This one definitely is.

 

The other good thing about the top end routers is they have three antennas so their throughput even with multiple devices connected is strong.

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Which is what I said. If your ISP gives you 20mbps, you can't connect 10 devices to the router and get 20mbps on all of them at the same time.

Right, but you mentioned the G router in your first post. G, N, or AC makes no difference in this respect.

By the way VHF, N routers can run the 5 GHz band as well.

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AC will improve your streaming too (really all that matters in internet traffic nowadays is HD video streaming, netflix along takes up 30% of internet traffic peaks).

The AC standard is specifically designed to improve video playback - so it should (theoretically) be similar to wired gig ethernet. 

Also again, range is big (there are now 8 antennas vs 4). And bonding is improved, plus beam forming as I mentioned before.

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By the way VHF, N routers can run the 5 GHz band as well.

 

I knew that, but I wasn't sure how many devices can actually take advantage of the third band on AC routers. If the number is minimal, it probably wouldn't be worth the extra coin to go AC. With things like game machines and DVD players, it may just be a matter of finding the right dongle. I just bought a BluRay player for the bedroom that has an ethernet port for a hard wired connection, but I have seen dongles that work with such devices.

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