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Anyone done black Friday/cyber Monday router shopping

Discussion in 'Off Topic [BG]' started by BigBasserino, Nov 26, 2017.


  1. BigBasserino

    BigBasserino

    Apr 30, 2017
    Cuz if you happen to, I could use the advice!

    The home router as of late has seized to chooch lately. Keeps connecting for sessions of 30 seconds and dropping lately. It's upgraded to its latest and greatest firmware but that doesn't save it as it's years old and I've seen the predicted manufacture expiration date is 2018.

    That being said, any good deals I can put my eyes on? I was thinking of this https://www.amazon.com/gp/aw/d/B00B...ess+router&dpPl=1&dpID=41kCYj5mweL&ref=plSrch as I have one of their usb wireless network adapters and it goes well. That and this is triple the price of what I had, so triple better? (Lmao couldn't resist laughing at my plight).

    I know everybody has their own theories of what's "good" so I figure this should make decent fodder if nothing else. I'm mostly looking for access to my favorite sites, gaming, youtube. ...you know. Mostly (ideally) 1080p streaming video and other goodness. Not really worried about 4k but who knows, someone can influence me to Haha.

    I'll be sitting with my state of the art Y2K tech until I sort this out. ..
     
  2. Motorola for me, or their new name, Arris

    If you're using a cable modem, get a all-in-one, modem + router + WAP

    I've got one that feeds internet to my TV & PS4 via LAN wire & the rest of the devices via Wi-Fi.

    Here is their comparison table:

    ARRIS Product Comparison - ARRIS SURFboard

    You can probably get a refurbished one cheap from Walmart or Best Buy.

    BTW, my last Motorola all-in-one router/modem/WAP didn't fail. I used it for over 5 years w/o a problem & finally upgraded when I bought a new computer with the AC1900 Wi-Fi.
     
  3. BigBasserino

    BigBasserino

    Apr 30, 2017
    Ah, Arris. Think that's the modem end of my cable connection. Pretty steady but was trying to weigh options. The long-standing router was a D-Link. I told a buddy and heard "ten years? That's pretty amazing considering it was ready for the dumpster at birth".

    I don't know. I'm thinking mobile devices soak up about 50mbps on average, a pc works with 150mbps (generally, even if it can go up to gigaspeeds), and when the house is crowded you're looking at about 4 people with two mobile (since that's what's hot now) devices each, give or take a straggler with one device, generally. So that can be about 400mbps at basic use spoken for before I get in the room?

    I want to incorporate Sling tv/Netflix/maybe hulu into my traffic at a later point as well so who knows what I'm looking for.
     
    Last edited: Nov 26, 2017
  4. If your internet provider has their own modem on there, you might save money using your own.
    We save $10/month using our own modem, because Comcast/xFinity charges a monthly rental of theirs.

    We used D-Link quite a lot when I was in Asia & had virtually no problems with them.
     
  5. BigBasserino

    BigBasserino

    Apr 30, 2017
    I'll look into that. Not a bad idea.

    As for d-link I can only comment on the DIR-655. It's an ok piece of hardware but I found it was a frequent occurrence to do the old "unplug, wait 10, plug back in" deal. On my own it was definitely fast enough. Add in people and you find the connection started to crawl. Add in the neighbors who (until I locked them out) would go "open network?! OK!!" And that was when I wanted to throw it.

    I mean, it lasted pretty long. But I think there were bits leaking out from total potential speed, personally. Putting an ethernet line direct was night and day difference.
     
  6. Stumbo

    Stumbo Wherever you go, there you are. Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 11, 2008
    Song Surgeon slow downer. https://tinyurl.com/y5dcuqjg
    MJ5150 likes this.
  7. BigBasserino

    BigBasserino

    Apr 30, 2017
  8. BryanB

    BryanB Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    I bought this one recently. I've had good results so far.
    812mfwO4sAL._SL1500_.
     
  9. MJ5150

    MJ5150 Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Apr 12, 2001
    Olympia, WA
    I've been anti Netgear for years, but bought one of their modems in May. Rock solid performance and great support with firmware updates.
    So impressed was I, I bought the Nighthawk AC1900 that turns the neighbours WiFi into a wired LAN in our tiny home.
    Another rock solid device with great support.

    -Mike
     
  10. BigBasserino

    BigBasserino

    Apr 30, 2017
    I'm seeing a bunch of AC1900's of varying brands. I wonder what the real contrast is? Basically I'm seeing something along the lines of they're all Google designed?? I gotta admit, if there was a good time for a router to bite the dust, this is it. But 11mbps right now...ugh. My gym has better speed.
     
  11. Exactly why I stick with Motorola, reliability & longevity.
     
  12. MJ5150

    MJ5150 Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Apr 12, 2001
    Olympia, WA
    My router is the NETGEAR Nighthawk R7000.
    The modem is the CM700.

    -Mike
     
  13. T_Bone_TL

    T_Bone_TL

    Jan 10, 2013
    NW Mass/SW VT
    A Router talks to your modem and makes a local network. An Access Point provides wireless. If you put them in the same box the functions are still different and the access point is usually not at the best place for an access point to be....

    But, ya know, day job and all. Possibly higher standards/expectations than the average home user.

    Router - pfSense or OpnSense. I'm leaning a bit more OpnSense at the moment due to the direction pfSense has taken lately, but I have not actually pried my deployed systems over to it - YET. There's considerable inertia to be overcome. Depending what you have kicking around for old PCs, you may not need to spend any money on it. Both are derivatives of m0n0wall (defunct now.)

    Access Points - Ubiquiti UniFi. I'm less impressed with the switches and routers so far, but the WiFi kicks butt.

    I have used a bunch of other gear in the past, and this stuff runs rings around it.

    Your use expectations are IME a bit on the high side; While I could certainly use more, I run 100+ users on a 50-60 Mbps feed, and your average netflix HD stream will do fine on 5 mbps. (They do suggest 25 if you go to UHD.) Servicing 100+ users on that little BW does take a level of management/traffic shaping - you're unlikely to run into that issue on an average home use, barring tons of illicit file sharing.

    Most use other than streaming video is "bursty", meaning that you and the other 4 people in the house are not all using the maximum amount you use at the same time. 50 Mbit for 5 people is likely overkill, or at least extremely adequate, barring bizarre use patterns.
     
    Last edited: Nov 27, 2017
  14. MJ5150

    MJ5150 Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Apr 12, 2001
    Olympia, WA
    Bandwidth is like watts.
    No one ever said 'my amp is too loud. I shoulda bought a smaller one'.
    Buy all the bandwidth you can afford. It'll probably be too much, but that's better than the opposite problem.

    -Mike
     
  15. BigBasserino

    BigBasserino

    Apr 30, 2017
    Thanks for clarifying. Admittedly, my network knowledge is fuzzy at best (even took a class in it once; don't ask me what I learned, just that calculating IP and mac addresses sounds really complicated).

    I am looking to get a new access point however since it's regularly referred to as a "wireless router" I took the phrase and ran with it.

    I thought PFsense was for old PC's that got modded into "servers" by having a bunch of network cards and hard drives shoved in them (or is that more along the lines of FreeNAS)?


    Ubiquiti-UniFy I read about today. Sounds cool. Thing is tho if I search "best routers" through google or duckduckgo, I get a ton of results without context (basically understanding "what brands are good" vs "what'll give you a connection and bite it later"). I generally want to revolve around the $100 mark as a "fix". At the same time I don't want to leave myself with a product that has no options/recourse for being solved when it has problems.

    It seems like barring spending a few hundred on some Asus "gaming" router that there's Linksys, Netgear, TP (which upon further read sounds like a barebones option for "great connection!" despite my liking my network adapter) and a few other names (I'd try to pull them up but at 11mbps I'm out of width!).

    I'm trying to sort of go in with high expectations as I think that the access point I've previously had is sort of the bottleneck on a good connection from the cable modem. I referred to the Mbps measurements I had based on a couple factors; since my gym is a good example as it offers wifi, on a night where it's not packed I can look at my phone and see the mbps in the connection details. The average measured speed is around 50mbps. The home network generally I'd see 100-150 in terms of wireless speed. But that also varies based on (of course) how far you are from the access point. So is mbps is primarily speed or does it apply to range as well? I'd bargain on average if walls weren't a factor that most users soaking up the bits are sitting between 20 and 40 feet of the actual connection.

    Thanks for trying to help.
     
  16. BigBasserino

    BigBasserino

    Apr 30, 2017
    Thanks for clarifying. Admittedly, my network knowledge is fuzzy at best (even took a class in it once; don't ask me what I learned, just that calculating IP and mac addresses sounds really complicated).

    I am looking to get a new access point however since it's regularly referred to as a "wireless router" I took the phrase and ran with it.

    I thought PFsense was for old PC's that got modded into "servers" by having a bunch of network cards and hard drives shoved in them (or is that more along the lines of FreeNAS)?


    Ubiquiti-UniFy I read about today. Sounds cool. Thing is tho if I search "best routers" through google or duckduckgo, I get a ton of results without context (basically understanding "what brands are good" vs "what'll give you a connection and bite it later"). I generally want to revolve around the $100 mark as a "fix". At the same time I don't want to leave myself with a product that has no options/recourse for being solved when it has problems.

    It seems like barring spending a few hundred on some Asus "gaming" router that there's Linksys, Netgear, TP (which upon further read sounds like a barebones option for "great connection!" despite my liking my network adapter) and a few other names (I'd try to pull them up but at 11mbps I'm out of width!).

    I'm trying to sort of go in with high expectations as I think that the access point I've previously had is sort of the bottleneck on a good connection from the cable modem. I referred to the Mbps measurements I had based on a couple factors; since my gym is a good example as it offers wifi, on a night where it's not packed I can look at my phone and see the mbps in the connection details. The average measured speed is around 50mbps. The home network generally I'd see 100-150 in terms of wireless speed. But that also varies based on (of course) how far you are from the access point. So is mbps is primarily speed or does it apply to range as well? I'd bargain on average if walls weren't a factor that most users soaking up the bits are sitting between 20 and 40 feet of the actual connection. I imagine the total advertised Mbps being divided by every person/device that walks into the home. Which is why I'm thinking in terms of "maximums" vs minimums. Because for every push notification....it's that little extra connection.

    Thanks for trying to help.
     
  17. T_Bone_TL

    T_Bone_TL

    Jan 10, 2013
    NW Mass/SW VT
    OK, there's "speed of your connection to the Access point" and there's "traffic from the outside world via your cable modem" - I think you are looking at the former, and it's usually irrelevant. I'm connected at "300" to the access point I'm using, which is connected by gigabit cable to the router, which is connected to the 25Mbit down, 2.5 Mbit up cable modem. Anyone else in the same room with similar equipment can also connect to the AP at "300" - the limiting factor is what the cable modem can do, and that's actually loafing most of the time (hit 10Mbit at some point today, mostly less - that one does NOT have 100+ users on it.)

    Unless you have some sort of large storage in your house, the cable modem speed rules your life so long as the AP connection is at least as big as the modem speed - BUT - those numbers (for a WiFi connection) are typically somewhat misleading. WiFi is "half-duplex" meaning only one side can talk at a time, so your 50 or 150 is really 25 or 75 (.vs. the wired connection to your modem that can go both ways at once) AND THEN you have to shave off a good deal of data that is used merely to create and maintain the wireless link, so it might be 20 - 65 "real world equivalent" data flowing across the link.

    The next bit most folks miss is that buying a "1300" or "1900" "router" (router and access point in one box) does not mean you'll likely get those speeds (500 - 950 Mbps real world) anywhere you can't actually SEE the "router" because the high-speed traffic is based on a good 5 GHz band connection (and an end use device that can actually exploit it - many cannot) and 5 GHz does not go through walls very well. Your best bet for high speeds (if, indeed, you even need them) is to have an access point that you can see in every place you care that the connection is fast (also, wire any TVs / media players you have - a wired connection is almost always faster than WiFi, and it clears the WiFi space for things that don't have wire ports) - once you go through a few walls, you'll be on the lower-speed-potential 2.4 GHz band. Cranking up your router power does not help much since the portable device generally has a worse antenna and a more limited power budget, and needs to talk back to the Access Point - cranking up one side is like having a conversation from end to end of a football field with only one person having a bullhorn... Having more low-power APs distributed around the house will give you better actual throughput.

    But you are coming from "old crap WiFi" and you are on a budget. And probably your old crap WiFi is your router as well. If you lived near me (I have no idea, as that's not filled in for you) I'd happily hand you something that would do better for free, as I have a collection of things that don't cut the mustard which we tried before we settled on the UniFi APs. I just did exactly that for one of our staff members who bought a house - ancient Apple Airport - can only move about 50 Mbit (real world) of the nigh onto 70 he's got available at the modem, but it's more than he actually needs. IIRC, it requires a kick upside the head every once in a while, which is a pain on a campus but not as much of a pain in a house, and he'll hit that point much less often with only his household use. Pretty much any "ac" (802.11ac) "router" will get you there, though a used cheap or free "n" (802.11n - 150/300) would be a huge upgrade from your 802.11b (11 mbit) unit - even a 802.11g at 54 would be, and that's old crap, just one step newer than your old crap. The access point I'm talking to is capable of going faster (it's "ac") but my computer still works fine and can only speak "n", so 300 is as fast as it goes.

    FreeNAS is the old PC with a bunch of hard drives. pfSense or OpnSense only need one hard drive and two network cards (optional WiFi card, then they can be your all in one box router and AP.) Mine are built to the purpose PCs that are not so old (were built brand-new for the purpose) but again, that's at work and a higher load than a home will ever see.

    My recommendation of UniFi is based on a lot of dead and/or substandard functioning gear from Netgear, Linksys, D-link, Apple, Belkin, and EnGenius, to name a few. You could hit your budget on a UniFi AP if you have a suitable PC for a router and you're willing to go through setting that up - otherwise you're probably looking at the mass-market all in one box things, and good luck to you.

    BTW- Calculating IP addresses is as simple as visiting a website these days; And a heck of a lot more reliable than trying to do it by hand.
     
    Last edited: Nov 27, 2017
  18. BigBasserino

    BigBasserino

    Apr 30, 2017
    Heh I think my "old crap" wifi AP actually DID 802.11B/G/N (so one maybe large step from "there") when I looked through its configuration, just admittedly not very well. Maybe I can turn off all the other modes since it doesn't sound like it's using the other old standards? If nothing else at this point for thrills.

    So the issue of "walls"; is this where "wifi extenders" can come into play? The half duplex deal makes enough sense. Something I'll figure out.

    Well, not just learning IP addresses, just. ...learning from English challenged adjuncts that really struggle to communicate things they put into practice on a regular basis.

    As for location? Dirty Jersey. But I'm going to stick with the plan of just buying new. ..simpler considering the factors. Thanks for the offer tho.
     
  19. T_Bone_TL

    T_Bone_TL

    Jan 10, 2013
    NW Mass/SW VT
    If it does B/G/N, try turning off B & G - if nothing you actually connect TO it can't do N, that might improve your speeds a little, or a lot.

    Many of the older N routers actually can't keep up with a fast cable modem, as they were limited by their processing/data handling speeds internally - nobody expected anything faster than DSL when they were built, so they cheaped out on that side of things.

    WiFi Extenders are a double-edged sword - they require using your available WiFi airspace to retransmit all the data the extender handles. Run wires if at all possible.
     
  20. BigBasserino

    BigBasserino

    Apr 30, 2017
    I went with the Netgear AC1900 R6900P. So far so great. Much better. Now I'm thinking of upgrading the usb connector to get the 5ghz connection considering my phone is like lightning while my pc is. ...well, close.

    Fun fun fun.
     

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