Confused about wireless G and N

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by iAlexG, Nov 29, 2009.

  1. iAlexG macrumors 6502

    iAlexG

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2009
    Location:
    Florida, Missing Britain.
    #1
    I have an entry level Belkin Wireless G router and I was thinking about upgrading because it needs to be restarted every day!!!
    So what is the difference between G and N?
    Also if I got a wireless N router would it work with G stuff?

    Here's a list of my wireless stuff: (will it all work?)

    MacBook Pro 13"
    HP Pavilion dv6000 (802.11g)
    Xbox 360 with wireless router
    iPod Touch 2G
     
  2. BlueRevolution macrumors 603

    BlueRevolution

    Joined:
    Jul 26, 2004
    Location:
    Montreal, QC
    #2
    N is twice as fast as G, and has double the range.

    Yes.

    Yes.

    Of course, N and G are both many times faster than a typical residential internet connection, so you won't notice any change in your internet speed. Transfers between N-capable devices on your network should be faster.
     
  3. iAlexG thread starter macrumors 6502

    iAlexG

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2009
    Location:
    Florida, Missing Britain.
    #3
    So is it worth spending $50 on a new wireless N router or should I wait until mine completely wears out?
     
  4. RaceTripper macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    May 29, 2007
    #4
    In a nutshell, Wireless G provides up to 56 Mbps throughput. Wireless N provides up to 300 Mbps throughput (i.e. several times faster). Wireless N routers generally support connection of G devices, but only at G speeds.

    Furthermore -- depending on the router -- if G devices are connected the router may fall back to G speeds for all connected devices. Notable exceptions to this are Apple's newer dual-band Airport Extreme and Time Capsules, which support simultaneous G and N networking. In your case the MBP could connect at N speeds to a dual-band Apple router without being bandwidth throttled when your G devices (HP, XBox, iPod) connect.

    Offhand a $50 Wireless N router will likely not be dual band, so it will essentially function for you like a G router.
     
  5. BlueRevolution macrumors 603

    BlueRevolution

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    Jul 26, 2004
    Location:
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    #5
    If it's not working, replace it. If you don't share files between computers much, I'd just save the money and get another G router.
     
  6. ntrigue macrumors 68040

    ntrigue

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2007
    #6
    As long as you understand that when you're Touch and Macbook are connected to WiFi it will be slowed to G.

    When only your Macbook is connected your speeds will be twice as fast.

    Otherwise, you can buy a dual-band router and avoid slowdowns.
     
  7. incognitoguile macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 29, 2009
    #7
    New macbook polycarbonate:

    Here is what the wireless specs are of the new white macbook:


    Wireless Network Features : AirPort Extreme 802.11n Wireless Network; Bluetooth 2.1+EDR

    i'm guessing the 'n' in 802.11n means that the new macbook supports n routers and can use their max speed, am i correct?
     
  8. flopticalcube macrumors G4

    flopticalcube

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    In the velcro closure of America's Hat
    #8
    It will slow down with g devices connected but not down to g speed. n devices will still be faster just not as fast as an n only network. In compatability mode, the network is also restricted to a maximum 130mbps when n devices are communicating.

    Yes. In n only mode you can expect to see a theoretical maximum of 300mbps. I rarely find that it goes over 170mbps.
     
  9. incognitoguile macrumors newbie

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    Nov 29, 2009
    #9
    What's the point then..
    Also, I thought high speed internet was 100mbps. Last time I connected my ethernet wire directly to my laptop, it showed 100mbps... then why 300mbps for n?
     
  10. flopticalcube macrumors G4

    flopticalcube

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    #10
    In the wireless world, full of noise and interference, theoretical rarely meets reality. g mode rarely achieves its maximum of 54mbps. In the wired world, modern Macs are capable of 1000mbps (also known as gigabit) ethernet but most home internet connections (after the modem) max out at 25mbps so its not a concern at the moment.
     
  11. incognitoguile macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 29, 2009
    #11
    Actually, I'm usually at 54mbps on my laptop, which is max. That's why I was looking to get an N router after I get my new macbook. But you say 'I rarely find that it goes over 170mbps.'

    also, you didn't reply to my comment about high speed being 100mbps, so what's the point of an n-router that goes above 100mbps.
     
  12. flopticalcube macrumors G4

    flopticalcube

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    #12
    My mini serves as a home server on my network and can communicate with my other computers at full speed. All the computers in the house can similarly talk to each other at n speeds.

    If you are right next to the router, you might be able to get 300mbps on n. My 170mbps are about 12ft away one floor up so its not an ideal situation.
     
  13. RaceTripper macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    May 29, 2007
    #13
    Ethernet is 100mbps (or 1000Mbps for Gigabit Ethernet). It's either/or: you are either connected to your router via ethernet or via wireless. A Wireless N connection is potentially faster than an 100Mbps ethernet connection. It's very unlikely you have a internet connection that is even close to either speed. Mine is 5Mbps (DSL).
     

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