Is there a big difference in internet speed between g and n?

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by melamina, Dec 28, 2009.

  1. melamina macrumors newbie

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    Oct 4, 2009
    #1
    Hi,
    I'm trying to decide whether to buy the express or the extreme.
    I will only be using it for web surfing with my macbook pro.

    But in the near future I might buy a wifi skype phone (which is g).

    If I'm using the express, that means my macbook pro connection will change from n to g (because it is not simultaneous as in the extreme) when the wifi phone connects.

    Will shifting from n to g change drastically my internet speeds in my macbook pro?

    If my download speed is 300 Kb/s and my upload is 30 Kb/s with "n"; how much will that change when shifting to "g"?

    I don't want to spend U$S 80 more on the extreme when I won't even use its extra capabilities.

    Thanks in advance
    Jimmy
     
  2. spinnerlys Guest

    spinnerlys

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    #2
    http://compnetworking.about.com/cs/wireless80211/a/aa80211standard.htm

    In short, your current stated internet speed will even be fine with a wireless 802.11 b router (11Mbit/s), so an Airport Express will fully suffice.

    Your internet will not go faster if you have a faster wireless, unless you live in South Korea or so.
    And it will not get slower when you change from n (100Mbit/s) to g (54Mbit/s).

    http://www.speedtest.net/global.php


    PS: 1KB (KiloByte) = 8Kbit (Kilobit), so 300KB/s=2400Kbit/s < 11Mbit/s (8012.11 b)
     
  3. xlii macrumors 68000

    xlii

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    Millis, Massachusetts
    #3
    One thing that made my internet a lot faster was a new cable modem. I have comcast cable coming into the house and I had it hooked up to a 10 year old cable modem. My wireless router was hooked up to the cable modem. When I updated that old cable modem to a new docsis 3.0 cable modem my download speed (www.speedtest.net) went from ~5 Mbits/S to 29 Mbits/S and my upload speed increased from 2 to 6 Mbits/S.
     
  4. spinnerlys Guest

    spinnerlys

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    #4
    Are you sure you mean MegaByte and not MegaBit?
    If it is MegaByte, than that would be one of the fastest internet connections on this planet, and 10/100 Ethernet LAN cables could not even transfer that, you'd need Gigabit LAN for this, let alone 802.11 n.
     
  5. melamina thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Oct 4, 2009
    #5
    Thanks a lot spinnerlys
    Your answer cleared all my doubts.

    Just one last question: will there be a great download speed difference when using the Airport Express in comparison to a wired ethernet connection?

    Thanks
     
  6. -Ryan- macrumors 68000

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    Jan 28, 2009
    #6
    No, it won't make any difference. :)
     
  7. spinnerlys Guest

    spinnerlys

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    #7
    As the Airport Express has 802.11n (100Mbit/s - 6-8 MB/s in real life) capabilities since March 2008 (except dual band), and 802.11g (54Mbit/s - 4-5 MB/s in real life) since 2004, and a wired ethernet connection most likely doesn't exceed 100Mbit (as most routers don't have Gigabit capabilities - 10-12 MB/s), it doesn't matter.

    You have to have real fast internet to feel/experience a difference.
    But when you download speed doesn't exceed 5 MB/s, then both, wired and wireless, connections will be sufficient.
     
  8. ntrigue macrumors 68040

    ntrigue

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    #8
    The value of [n] is realized when syncing files between a Time Capsule or AppleTV. You are not going to run into the bandwidth limit of your Internet connection.
     
  9. xlii macrumors 68000

    xlii

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    #9
    You're correct, I meant megabit. The increase in speed surprised me as I never thought even an old cable modem wouldn't be the slowest part of my network. I corrected my original post from MBytes to Mbits.
     
  10. robotartfashion macrumors 6502

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    Jan 1, 2009
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    Phoenix, AZ
    #10
    You aren't kidding, COX was getting me with this, I moved from an old DOCSYS 1 to a DOCSYS 3 and my speeds almost tripled.

    I can only assume that it makes sense for them not to educate, as most people won't realize they're using a teaspoon when they're paying for a ladle.

    To the OP, I agree, you'll be fine with the downgrade given the bandwidth that you have available. The only downside would possibly be if you were transferring a lot of files via wifi between computers in your network.
     
  11. melamina thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Oct 4, 2009
    #11
    Thanks again spinnerlys and Ryan.
    That's all I needed to know.
     
  12. quantum003 macrumors 6502a

    quantum003

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    #12
    Actually, your connection will be faster if you stick with the wired ethernet connection instead of pushing your data into wireless. You are adding a new link to the chain when you introduce wireless, your data is pushed up into the air by the router and then must be pulled back down by the wireless adapter on your laptop. Even if there are zero interferences in the air it will still not be as fast as just piping it into your computer via ethernet.
     
  13. Tower-Union macrumors 6502

    Tower-Union

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    #13
    That is one of the more ridiculous things I have heard. . . the wireless he's using is capable of connecting at 54 megabits/second, while his internet is only capable of (I'm assuming) around 15-20 megabits/second, so the internet is still using not even HALF of the wireless' potential speed. Yes 54 Megabit wireless is slower then gigabit (1000megabits) ethernet, and yes its slower even then 100 Megabit ethernet; however he will only notice the difference if he's moving files around the LAN, once he gets to the bottleneck of the modem/internet tier he's paying for it will make ZERO difference in speed.
     
  14. KnightWRX macrumors Pentium

    KnightWRX

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    #14
    You mean DOCSIS (Data Over Cable System Interface Specification).

    And the level of your DOCSIS standard doesn't really change your speed, they probably just changed your modems config file to one with higher values, unless you were already achieving the max speed for DOCSIS v1, which is highly unlikely (since DOCSIS v1 download was already capable of using a 256QAM encoded channel with compression and do upload over multiple 16QAM encoded channels).
     
  15. quantum003 macrumors 6502a

    quantum003

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    #15
    So you're saying his wireless router is capable of coaxing data out of a cable modem faster than it could otherwise pipe it through an ethernet cable? Impressive feat.
     
  16. Tower-Union macrumors 6502

    Tower-Union

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    #16
    The wireless router doesn't "coax" anything, the cable modem spits it out to the router at a set rate, (for my internet, its 25Megabits per second). Given that the wireless router can transfer speeds at up to 54 Megabits per second it really doesn't matter whether I'm connected wirelessly at 54, or wired at 1000, the cable modem is still capped (by my ISP) at 25.
     
  17. apfhex macrumors 68030

    apfhex

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    #17
    They're saying the exact opposite of that, which I think has been made pretty clear. Based on the OP's requirements the Express should fit the bill just fine as long as they're not going to ever need a wired LAN connection (two Macs could always be connected directly for larger file transfers, so it's probably not a big deal) or the other features the Extreme offers.
     
  18. reebzor macrumors 6502a

    reebzor

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    #18
    Transferring files and stuff through the network will definitely be slower, but I don't know if you'll notice it just browsing the internet. I use n everyday at home, but I'm at my vacation house now and it wasn't until I read this thread that I remembered the router here is b.
     
  19. quantum003 macrumors 6502a

    quantum003

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    #19
    Um. I think we're arguing the same point? :confused:

    My comment was that you're very slightly better off taking ethernet out of the cable modem than sending it through wireless if you don't have to.
     
  20. Tower-Union macrumors 6502

    Tower-Union

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    #20
    Well you HAVE to use ethernet to go from modem to router, at least I've never seen a wireless modem. I'm just saying that from router to computer, wired or wirless makes no difference in internet speeds (provided your internet is under 50Mb/s.
     

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