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jeffla

A little help choosing a new router

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jeffla

Now that all 3 of our computers have wireless N adapters in them I thought it might be a good time to upgrade my WRT54G router running Tomato. I'm confused by the whole dual band simultaneous stuff. Let me tell you what I have:

 

2 ip webcams 802.11 G only

3 computers 802.11 B/G/N

Tivo HD Ethernet

Onkyo Home Receiver Ethernet

WHS HP487 Ethernet

PS3 Ethernet

 

From what I have been reading, I need to separate the wireless G devices from the wireless N devices to allow the N devices to funtion at their desired speed. So a dual band router seems to fit that bill. What I can't figure out is, if the G devices use 2.4ghz, and the N devices use 2.4ghz how will a dual band router that transmits one network on 2.4 and one on 5.0 help me?

 

I am looking at the Linksys e3000. I know that there are dual band adapters, but the one in at least one of our laptops is not dual band. The other 2 I'm not even sure what brand adapters they are.

 

Any help, even if it's just a link to a wiki article would be great. I'm trying to learn as much as I can but find myself getting lost.

 

Jeff

Edited by jeffla

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osquest

I went with a dual-band because I live in an apartment and the 2.4 Ghz band is heavily used. I have less interference at 5 Ghz so that was my reason. Not all wireless N nics support.5GHz so you'll need to check that if you plan to use it. In my situation 5GHz is light-years better than 2.4, even on N but that my be due to 8 other access points I can see rather than the technology.

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ikon

From what I have been reading, I need to separate the wireless G devices from the wireless N devices to allow the N devices to funtion at their desired speed.

True

 

So a dual band router seems to fit that bill. What I can't figure out is, if the G devices use 2.4ghz, and the N devices use 2.4ghz how will a dual band router that transmits one network on 2.4 and one on 5.0 help me?

It won't. The idea of dual band routers is that you can have your G clients on 2.4 and your N clients on 5.8. If both G and N clients use 2.4 you will suffer the performance loss.

 

I am looking at the Linksys e3000.

I recommend you look at the Asus RT-N16 router and put DD-DRT on it.

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ikon

Not all wireless N nics support.5GHz so you'll need to check that if you plan to use it.

 

True

 

In my situation 5GHz is light-years better than 2.4, even on N but that my be due to 8 other access points I can see rather than the technology.

 

Not surprising that 5.8 is better for you. Dual band costs a little more and most people won't pay it; good choice on your part.

 

It may not be an issue for you, but one concern about the 5.8 band is range. One of the rules about wireless technology is that, the higher the frequency, the less range it has. In situations where 2.4 works OK it's possible that 5.8 might not because of intervening walls or floors or other obstructions. Simply put, the longer wavelength of 2.4 signals can penetrate through walls and floors better.

 

On a related topic, one of the reasons providers are so interested in the 700 MHZ band that the US goverment put up for auction recently is simply because those frequencies can get to places that higher frequencies can't. Cell phones providers are virtually salivating at the mouth to be able to provide 7xx MHZ phones. Their coverage maps will expand dramatically if they can make deals for the 7xx frequencies. Downtown coverage will work better because 7xxx frequencies will get around the tall buildings and through glass windows much better, The providers will also likely need fewer repeater towers due to the extended range of 7xx. How about your cell phone always working in elevators? Or in underground parking garages?

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jeffla

Seeing as at least one of my laptops is 2.4ghz wireless N, I guess there is no point in upgrading then. That is what I was thinking but I just wasn't sure. Thanks for the advice.

 

Jeff

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ikon

It could help any of the other 2 that do have 5.8.

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jmwills

My wireless is called CAT6 !

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jeffla

It could help any of the other 2 that do have 5.8.

 

ok, I'll have to figure out what the cards are in the other two computers. One is in the thinkpad I just got and the other I bought, all I know about it is that Asus made it.

 

edit:

 

Looks like the thinkpad has this adapter Intel® Centrino® Advanced-N 6205 which appears to support 2.4 & 5.8

The desktop Asus adapter is PCE-N13 which appears to be 2.4 only.

 

so, 5ghz is out since the thinkpad is the only computer that can utilize it. I think I'll just stick with my wrt54g. I'll look into getting a new router maybe when this one eventualy dies.

 

Thanks everyone for your insight and advice. I appreciated it.

Edited by jeffla

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ikon

yw. At least there's a clearer picture of what to look for in the future.

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