View Full Version : Help for the technically challenged!
02-27-2000, 01:04 AM
I have recently been looking into Cable, DSN, and the like. Only problem is, I have no idea what I am getting into.
Can any of you give me a run-down of the disadvantages/advantages (speed/price/reliability etc) of different Internet services, and what you recommend. Also please list some companies with their website (if you have it).
It would be greatly appreciated.
Cable is fast, but has a more of a tendency to get "clogged."--Meaning, if all of your neighbors are on at the same time, you can see a noticable decline in bandwidth. If you work normal hours, then chances are you will be surfing at the same time as your neighbors.
DSL is fast, and it runs on your existing phone lines--and it allows you to make and receive calls while surfing the Internet. At $50 a month from swbell.net, it's a steal. But, you have to live within a certain distance of a telephone switching station. As you live in Houston, chances are good that it's available in your area. If it is, I'd say it's your best bet.
You could buy a satellite dish that brings in fast Internet downloads AND allows you DirecTV access. The problems with this system though is that you have to pay separately for the equipment, the DirecTV, the satelite Internet, AND a regular ISP because your browser will need a method to make requests. (the satelite Internet is downstream only--which also means that your upstream speed will be limited to your modem connect speed--probably around 56K)
There's also a company in Houston that is selling fast Internet across a segment of the televison (VHF, I think) signal--basically, you use some sort of antenna. I can't for the life of me, though, remember their name.
If I had access to all of them, I'd say cable and DSL are the best two (speed, reliability, and support). On paper, cable is slightly faster--but it's speed is subject to how many people are using it at one time. For my money, if I had access to DSL (which I don't), I'd have it today.
02-28-2000, 05:32 PM
I'd second DSL as the best choice if available.
02-28-2000, 07:20 PM
Thankyou Pole, Hoopjunkie!! http://bbs.clutchcity.net/ubb/smile.gif
DSL vs. Cable : which one costs more?
02-28-2000, 07:32 PM
dont know about DSL but cable is $40 a month for RoadRunner plus instalation(all of these will have instalation fees and modem costs). $40 isnt that much when you think about it b/c most of us pay $20 a month to our ISP and another $20 a month for a second phone line.
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Dr of Dunk
02-28-2000, 07:44 PM
On average DSL is more expensive than cable. When getting quoted DSL prices, don't forget you pay the ISP fee AND the phone company fee. I currently have 768k/128k service in the Dallas area from GTE. This runs about $50-$70 (can't remember... curse that automatic billpay).
Pole is correct about cable modems. Cable modem technology is built (in most cases) such that you share a backbone/trunk with your neighbors. It's shared bandwidth on the network. The more people jump on, the slower your speed technically can be. If the pipes aren't clogged, performance/price, cable modem wins handsdown. You can achieve anywhere from 1-8 megabit transfer rates using one from what I remember. To get that kind of performance out of DSL, you will be paying MUCH more.
DSL lines offer more consistent speeds although their speeds aren't guaranteed for the most part, either. Most DSL providers allow for static IP's. Great if you're considering running a server. I don't know of too many cable providers allowing static IP's; someone can correct me on that.
When cable modems first came out in the California area, the access was oversold. Oversold to the point that so many people were on at the same time, performance had degraded to 33.6k/56k modem speeds. On average and during non-peak hours, your cable modem speed easily beats cheap DSL speeds.
To get DSL, you have to live within approximately 3 miles of a central office/switching station.
All this being said... I own a DSL modem. No cable modem provider in my area. =)
<this space for rent>
02-28-2000, 10:29 PM
$50 set up fee
$75-125 Cable Modem
$30-40 set up fee
$20-50 monthly depending on cable service &/or discounted packages
DSL faster, and at a consistent speed
CABLE just as fast at it's best, bogs down with more traffic
But hey, these are the prices in Dallas...
Dr of Dunk
03-01-2000, 09:28 PM
You can easily get DSL installation much less than that (including the free DSL modem). Given little-to-no bottlenecks, DSL available for consumer use is not as fast as cable modems. Plus, the $30-$50 you quote is not for the fastest DSL lines (it's actually for some of the slower ones which are nowhere near as fast as cable speeds). For the average user, cable is the best buy.
<this space for rent>
03-01-2000, 10:41 PM
If you are interested in DSL, here is an informative link:
I believe that is Pole's longest post ever.
03-03-2000, 11:52 PM
Extra thanks to everyone who contributed to this thread! Your help was very much appreciated.
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