Which wireless router

  sparky100 22:45 24 Jun 2006

I recently purchased an Acer 1642 laptop. I have a desk top machine and connect to the internet via NTL cable modem 1mb. I have been to PC World this afternoon but am slightly baffled by the makes and speeds. The assistant reccommended the Belkin 108mps for £54 or the Linksys 125 with speed booster for £53. They also have the Belkin 54 for £44 with usb. Can I have advise as the best option please.

Thank you

  ade.h 22:51 24 Jun 2006

Do you *need* the speed boost?

If not, see my response to click here

  sparky100 23:01 24 Jun 2006

I do not know if I need a speed booster. Is there any difference in the browsing speed when wireless between 54 & 108 and also compared with my direct connection desktop?
Thanks for your reply.

  ade.h 23:12 24 Jun 2006

None whatsoever. 8Mbits per sec into (realistically) 20 to 40Mbps does go!

Proprietary Pre-n systems are only of benefit for LAN file streaming, particularly large groups of files or the streaming of high-quality media. I often stream high bit-rate WMA files (c. 440Kbps) with not a single skipped beat.

Incidentally, Draft 802.11n was ratified recently and the first Draft 11n products became available, which means that the definitive 802.11n is not too far off now.

  sparky100 23:26 24 Jun 2006

May be worth hanging on a little longer then before making a purchase.

  De Marcus™ 23:30 24 Jun 2006

As far as I can tell the 1642 comes with a built in 802.11g wireless adaptor so any *extra* usb adaptor bundled with a router is only going to be surplus to requirements. If your just web browsing and downloading files 802.11b is plenty fast enough, if however, as has been suggested your streaming audio, video, or transferring large files on a regular basis then a pre-n system may prove worthwhile.

  ade.h 23:32 24 Jun 2006

Well, no. It depends how long you can wait. It was originally expected to be at least in 4th quarter of '06, but might now happen a little sooner. But products have then to be produced and released, not to mention have the bugs ironed out. The early Pre-n stuff was troublesome and it would be unwise to buy the first thing that comes along as soon as it's available. Like Vista! I would get a standard router now and maybe upgrade next year if you need the speed boost.

  ade.h 23:37 24 Jun 2006

Just to clarify De Marcus's reference to 802.11b: that was the previous standard and ran at up to 11Mbps theoretical. Sufficient for internet access and general file sharing. 802.11g is the current standard and provides up to 54Mbps theoretical and is fine for even the slightly impatient file sharer.

  sparky100 09:18 25 Jun 2006

Ok many thanks for all your replies. I think I will follow the Belkin route (no pun intended)and just get a standard 54Mbps and see what happens over the next 12 months. I am quite into downloading a number of the BBC listen again programmes so hopefully there should not be a problem with that.

  ade.h 14:50 25 Jun 2006

You won't find any problems with Listen Again, at least not at your end. I use every day.

  marsman 21:11 27 Jun 2006

Good luck and be prepared for a lot of drop connections, I would advice a D-Link, or if you would like a built in print server, maybe the USRobotics. But stay clear of belkin routers.

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