How broad the broadband?

Discussion in 'other software & services' started by bellgamin, Mar 1, 2011.

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  1. bellgamin

    bellgamin Very Frequent Poster

    Aug 1, 2002
    I now use a cheap DSL that yields a max 3.5mbps. For just a few more dollars, I can double that to 7mbps. I realize these are slow speeds in many areas but -- here in Hawaii - they're about *average*.

    I am seeking comments as to whether or not it is worth the extra few $$ in order to double my speed. The reasons I ask are:

    1- I used to have 11mbps (under a 3 month freebie special) and forums seemed to load no faster than they now do at only 3.5mbps.

    2- When I download nowadays, only a few sources ever actually use the full speed of my 3.5mbps connection. Commodo always does. usually does. rarely does. Avira never does.

    Ergo, it seems to me that -- even if I had a faster connection -- many of the sites I visit &/or download from will not often use that extra speed.

    >>>Am I missing something here? Would I OFTEN see much difference when surfing at 7mbps as compared with surfing at 3.5mbps?<<<

    Your thoughts will be greatly appreciated because I am a raw amateur when it comes to understanding such things as bandwidth, latency, etc etc etc.
  2. dw426

    dw426 Registered Member

    Jan 3, 2007
    Honestly Bellgamin, imho, you would not see enough of a difference in download speed to warrant such a small increase in bandwidth. Upload speed might be a different story, but I'm betting with that small of a jump, you wouldn't get an increase in upload speed from the ISP anyway. Unless you P2P, use something like NetFlix, or do online gaming (not web-based), I really don't see enough of an advantage in performance to warrant more money. I wouldn't do anything under 10Mbps if I were seriously considering an upgraded plan.

    P.S, forums like this one won't load much faster after your 3.5 because it's mostly text. If you get into ones where people have that ungodly habit of animated avatars and such, you'll see a noticeable speed increase. Though, again, with as small of a jump that you are considering, that increase won't be as apparent.
  3. Ibrad

    Ibrad Registered Member

    Dec 8, 2009
    The only time I have seen higher speeds actually help is when I have done online gaming and large file downloads. Day to day use is about the same for normal websites. However don't call you speed slow, I can't really get higher the 1MB most of the time my upload speed is .14 :p
  4. ratchet

    ratchet Registered Member

    Feb 20, 2006
    I would agree on two fronts: a) often it is just the sites servers and b) 3.5 to 7 you may not notice. I'm a speed freak in that I test constantly through many test sites. Obviously the following isn't scientific so you'll have to trust my "subjective" observations. My cable ISP just doubled our speeds (indeed for free) from 5 to 10 download and about 500 kbps to at least 2.5 Mbps (sometimes it's 3) upload. Late night and early morning I test over 10. During some evenings I've ground to less than 2 and recognize "that" immediately. Normal evening traffic speeds are usually around 7 or 8 and I can't notice much difference from 10. I have two daughters living in Boston and their Comcast speeds are 20 and I really can tell it's much faster than my 10 here in rural PA. I'd love 20 but wouldn't pay a whole lot for it!
  5. PJC

    PJC Very Frequent Poster

    Feb 17, 2010
    In 1999, I started with a Dial-Up/56 Kbps.
    Then, I went through 1 Mbps (2002) and 2 Mbps (2005).
    Since 2008, I've been using an ADSL+/24 Mbps.
    I've seen much difference...
  6. Ocky

    Ocky Registered Member

    May 6, 2006
    George, S.Africa
    If only we had one fith of the speeds most of you can get (i.e. you have the option to opt for higher speed bundles), we would be ecstatic.
    The monopoly here promised us 10Mbps 6 months ago, and so far only a handfull of exchanges have been upgraded.
    I am still sitting with what is the current highest speed available in my town, advertised at 4096kbps. My actual download/upload speeds are way off global average of 8.55 Mbps ...

    speed test.png

    Obviously I would appreciate a higher speed - Linux distros downloads. Also we are capped at max 9GB per month. I can live with that.
  7. SweX

    SweX Registered Member

    Apr 21, 2007
    Hi bellgamin!

    It also depends how far away you live from the station that you are getting the connection from.

    For example, you can get full speed if you are inside the 1-2KM mark(if I remember right), above that your max speed will drop for every 100-500 meters added.

    I write in kilometers (KM) since I can't measure in miles, sorry ;)

    Also if you are playing online games such as FPS ones then having a stable and quite fast connection is essential to be able to keep the ping low.

    And YES, if it's just a matter of a few more dollars a month then I would go for the faster connection without a doubt.
    Last edited: Mar 2, 2011
  8. Sully

    Sully Registered Member

    Dec 23, 2005
    I have scrutinized this issue so often I think I blew a SIMM, erm, or maybe it was a DIMM lol.

    I currently have a 9676kbps down X 693kbps up according to my speedtest to my ISP. So a 10 x 768.

    I would not go back now if I can afford it. It is about $15 cheaper to go with a 3x512 or $10 with a 6x512. I had 33k, 56k, 256x256, 512x256, 1.5x512, 3x512, 6x512 and finally 10x768. While everyone wants uploads speeds, don't dismiss the downloads speeds, as long as you use it.

    As has been said, many times you won't notice the speed in standard browsing. But, when you want to get a pdf or a picture or video, or watch netflix/hulu, or download a file, or play a game, it is so worth it. Downloading a 10mb pdf file from a site with a fat pipe is only a few seconds instead of a minute or more. Add that up when you are researching/searching, and you will quickly note the difference. So much of what I do at work now uses the internet to find infos that if I had to go back to 3mb, it would be agonizingly slow.

    That is not to say that what you do warrants that fast a connection. All I am saying is that if you do X number of things, that each require X number of seconds/minutes to complete based on bandwidth, there can be a significant difference/reduction with the larger pipe.

    For what its worth at least. I could get cable here and get 12mbps downloads, but then my upload would be a dismal 128k, not my idea of an upgrade. There are starting to offer wireless here where I live with a 3000kbps up X 6000kbps down, or even a 6x6 if you can afford it. They call this a "metro-lan", although that is still a bit vague to me. Regardless, that is pretty exciting to think about uploads that fast. However, the connection between here and ma-bell is wireless, so while I want faster speeds I also want low latency.

  9. tesk

    tesk Registered Member

    Aug 9, 2007
    Websites are no faster loading - imagine how much data a normal website contain - maybe 1 mb with small pictures,. ads and so on - on a 3,5 mbit connection it would take around 3 seconds to download, but often the browser only download 5-10 parts at the same time, so it will anyway take some time. And then it has to process the data.

    I am on a 50/50 mbit connection, but I can also max out the connection because when I download and uploading from various ftp servers it does not take that many servers before it is full ;)
  10. jnthn

    jnthn Registered Member

    Sep 22, 2010
    Wished I could get the speeds you guys are getting back here. Monopoly sucks so much that only 2 or 3 ISP's nationwide are viable for home users and speeds in excess of 2mbps down charge exhorbitant fees and are not within paying reach of average consumers. :'( :'(
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