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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I recently decided that when I purchase my new gaming PC that I would like to make my network wireless. I currently have four people networked including myself (basically my upstairs neighbors and my roommate); I'm running through a Linksys 4-port Router, and my connection is a 1.5mb broadband DSL (through SNET, very pleased with the service). I was just wondering, considering the price of the wireless router + network adapters for each of the four computers, is it worth it, is the technology up to speed (no pun intended)?


Usually I do my research abroad before searching the AVS forum because I like to know a little bit about what I am talking about, but this time around I figured I would come straight here. Because of this, I know very little about the technology in question. So my questions are:


1) For LAN or online gameplay, running through a wireless hub, is there any loss of connection speed?

2) How is the connectivity? Easy to set up, easy to trouble shoot, easy compatibility?

3) What sort of technology is out there to maximize my broadband connection?

4) Can anyone recommend a product that they themselves own?


Okay, thanks! Hopefully this will yield some good results.
 

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1) for lan play you may lose speed if you use 802.11b (11mbps) and not 802.11g (I forget but I think its close to 100mbps) hardware, wire typically runs at 100mbps or 10 mbps depending on if you run cat 5 or 3 respectively (cat 5 is more or less standard now). For network play you will not see a loss in speed as your dsl speed is well below 11 mbps.


2) Very easy to set up if you're even remotely technically oriented. Just remember to turn WAP encryption on (makes setup a touch more difficult but also increases security a ton!


3) You can't really buck the system, you get what you get. Think of your data line like a water hose, yeah you can put a nozzel on the end of your hose and the water will look like it's coming out faster but you're still getting the same amount of water from your pipe.


4) I use a netgear router/firewall/wireless access point, a linksys bridge, orinoco cards for laptops and some other brand of desktop card. Linksys IMO has the upper hand as it relates to wireless (I hate their wired gear though) netgear is really nice and easy too. Orinoco is exellent but rather expensive and don't get me started on the crappy MS hardware.


Other notes, use a firewall and block ports you don't need! I can't stress that enough. Use it if it's built into your router and if it's not make sure every computer you connect with has a software firewall!


(edit)


Then again if you already have hard wire running to everyone why bother with wireless???
 

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Yeah, seriously..if everything's already networked via wiring, why would you want to spend money on wireless at all? General rule of thumb on the whole issue is that if you can run wiring no problem, then do. There's alot of overhead in a wireless transmission, and while it most likely wont affect gaming, there's always the possibility that it could. Heck, even cordless phones can mess up the signal.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I was thinking about going wireless so that my roommate and I can push our computers into a common room once a week (day off) and deathmatch the hell out of each other, eat some pizza, and drink some beer. Granted we can do this from the comfort of our rooms, but I like to be able to see the person I'm playing against. Also, my PC would act as a hometheater unit so I would be rolling it into the living room to hook it up to the tv and watch movies and the like. I also like the idea of doing away with all these wires (I'm going with wireless keyboard and mouse and figured why stop there?). There is also a slim chance of getting the neighbors in on the DM action and it would be fun if we could all gather in the same room. Thanks for the advice on hardware; I heard the Net Gear is very good and reliable as well. Thanks again!
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Novice question: The router and adapters I understand, but the bridge, what's that? Is that a fancy word for the modem you're running your connection through? Jack--->Bridge (modem)--->Router--->Computers?
 

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I use the bridge for my PS2 as I don't have a wire running to it (yet) and sony's ps2 network adapter is just an ethernet port. Basically the bridge acts as a transciever between the (ethernet) network port of my PS2 and the wireless access point. (because I can't slap a wireless card in my PS2, or at least I couldn't a year ago)
 

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I think you are referring to a wireless access point. A wireless access point is what you use to connect multiple wireless devices to each other. You can use a wireless bridge to connect two LAN's via wireless or connect a group of wired devices to your existing wireless access point. I use a Cisco wireless access point at home for gaming and I don't see any speed issues. As far as ease of use, I would advise buying your wireless cards from the same manufacturer as your access point. That way you know they were designed to work with each other. One thing you need to remember is that the 11 mbps is shared across all your wireless devices, so the more you have, the slower it works. It is also half-duplex, which means you cannot send and receive at the same time. Another issue you may run into is that wireless LAN equipment uses 2.4 ghz transmission to communicate. I have issues talking on the phone and internet surfing. If you live in an area where there is a lot of interference the distance you can move from the access point will be cut down.
 

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I have a wireless LAN in my home. Setup was a breeze and it works perfetly 98% of the time. But that 2% drives me bonkers.


Since my computers are in fixed spots, the only advantage wireless gave me was easy setup. I'm still kicking myself for not taking the trouble to lay cable.


If your reason for going wireless is so you can move computers into a central room, I think you'll be a lot better off running cable and setting up extra nodes in that room rather than going wireless.
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by joshuagross
I think you are referring to a wireless access point. A wireless access point is what you use to connect multiple wireless devices to each other. You can use a wireless bridge to connect two LAN's via wireless or connect a group of wired devices to your existing wireless access point. I use a Cisco wireless access point at home for gaming and I don't see any speed issues. As far as ease of use, I would advise buying your wireless cards from the same manufacturer as your access point. That way you know they were designed to work with each other. One thing you need to remember is that the 11 mbps is shared across all your wireless devices, so the more you have, the slower it works. It is also half-duplex, which means you cannot send and receive at the same time. Another issue you may run into is that wireless LAN equipment uses 2.4 ghz transmission to communicate. I have issues talking on the phone and internet surfing. If you live in an area where there is a lot of interference the distance you can move from the access point will be cut down.
umm no (if you are talking to me that is) I'm reffering to a bridge a WET11 to be exact http://www.linksys.com/products/prod...id=36&prid=432 They do sell these with neat cases just for gaming now too btw. You've got your terms mixed up a little an access point is an "in point" to your network, a bridge "bridges" the gap of wired devices or networks.


As far as buying from the same manufacturer it doesn't matter, the communication standards are layed out and everyone has to adhere to them. It's like buying a Denon amp and using a Sony CD player, it will work and you're better off buying products that perform well rather than sticking to a single manufacturer. But having said that if you wanted everything from the same company you would probably want linksys.


Agreed you probably wouldn't want 802.11b (11mbps) for what you are proposing, go with 802.11G and you wont have problems with too little bandwith or cordless phones though my better 802.11b gear (read orinoco) works perfectly in situations where other cards only get weak signal.
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by Salmoneous
If your reason for going wireless is so you can move computers into a central room, I think you'll be a lot better off running cable and setting up extra nodes in that room rather than going wireless.
So very true, a decent hub nowadays is what $40 for an 8 port and like $80 for a switch?


Wireless is nice for working from home out on the patio while grilling and for quick setups where you don't have time or the ability to run wire.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
So it seems like the general concensus here is to keep the wires; I must admit, the extra $300 + dollars I was going to shell out was becoming a bit of a deterent (sp?). Hey, if you guys say stick with the wires, I might just have to comply; If you can't beat'em...well, you know the rest. Thanks everyone!
 
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