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Thread: Help me pick out a Modem/Router

  1. #1
    Critical Damage!
    mjmjr25's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Ryan's Lakeside Cabin; in MN


    Help me pick out a Modem/Router

    Ok - to start:

    I'm as tech crippled as a person my age should be. I don't understand a lot of terminology on PC stuff and what should be basic tasks tend to take way too long and frustrate me.

    My upload/download speeds are HORRIBLE. I think part is my service. I'm hoping part is also my modem / router.

    I just got a high end Alienware Alpha i7 model. Hearthstone is taking almost 3 hours to download (about same as my last PC). Was really hoping the fast processor was going to help me out.

    I have a 7 yo router/modem combo. I don't know the difference in a router and a modem. I think I need them both, so prefer a combo unit to minimize connections and hardware.

    My internet service is 5mbps. (this is the highest available in my area).

    My router / modem is a:
    Netgear N150
    *Wireless N150 - All-in-one幽igh Speed ADSL2+ Modem (built-in) speeds up to 150Mbps
    Security - (WPA/WPA2猶SK) and WEP
    Four (4) 10/100 Ethernet ports

    My question is this:
    If I buy a different router/modem - will it improve my performance? Or is my 5mbps going to kill me no matter what?

    If it can improve it - what sort of things am I looking for?

    Rare PROTO HUNTER; Looking For: Jak and Daxter, New Zealand Story (original build only), Ratchet and Clank 2, Tak and the Power of the JuJu

    Paying 4 figures + for any of the above.

    Found in 2017: Recalhorn, Dr. Yam Yam, Sunday Fundy

  2. #2
    Schlonginator II: Judgment Dong
    GohanX's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2001
    Next to your mom

    I don't know that much about variations in network hardware, I usually just buy whatever someone else recommends at the time, but I think your biggest issue is your actual internet speed. Living out in the sticks has its issues sometimes. Although my internet connection is much faster my PS4/Xbone is limited to between 10 and 15 Mbps due to my network and it took a good 2 days or so to download the Halo collection on the Bone.

    One good way to test to see if your network is the issue is to do a speedtest on one of your computers. Then plug the cable modem's ethernet directly to the laptop (you'll probably need to reset the modem) and do the test again, see if there is much variance.

  3. #3
    Hardened Shock Trooper

    Join Date
    Dec 2007

    It's probably your 5mbit that's the biggest factor.
    Like GohanX said try the speed tests. Also when you have the ethernet directly plugged into he laptop, disable your wireless too to make sure it's only using the wired connection.

    I'm not a big fan of wireless. Never seem to have good luck with it.

    I have 7mbit service and upgraded from an old linksys wrt54g to a newer 1200ac. The modem I have comes from the ISP. Changing routers didn't make a diff for my internet speeds, but I really wanted gigabit on the internal network.

  4. #4
    NEST Puppet
    red impact's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2006
    NW, UK

    First thing will be bandwidth...first download, then upload and then if your gear is plugged into the master socket in your place?

    Beyond that hardware will play a part but mostly in terms of physical or wireless connection, handling of data may be an issue but will depend on what is passing through I.e torrents or general web traffic or whatever

    I quite like NetGear stuff and if my ISP router dies I'll be getting one of these: NETGEAR D6400
    Last edited by red impact; 11-06-2016 at 11:10 AM. Reason: iPad spellcheck FTL

  5. #5
    Camel Slug
    BLEAGH's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2007

    Your 5mbps connection is the issue. All your hardware is more than up to the task to deliver that speed. Go to and use the server with the best ping that is closest to you. There is probably one hosted by your isp. See if it gets close to 5 mbps.

  6. #6
    Hades Gate Keeper
    Tyranix95's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    LA, CA

    For internet speed: Check your up-load & download speeds. In general, up-load is you sending files to the net. Download is you receiving files form the net. These speeds are usually set by the Internet Service Provider based upon the type of Service Contracts they offer. In sum, if downloading is taking way too long, then you need to up your download speeds (aka download bandwidth, measured in MB). And, same thing of uploading. In most cases, this will mean selecting a new Service Contract for the ISP, one with greater (aka faster) upload and download rates. Basically, the more MB you can upload or download from the next per second, the faster your net experience will be.

    The exception to this is if your internet has been fast, and then it slows down to a crawl. This usually indicates a hardware issue or a network issue. Then it's time for tech support to check the signal on the wires and make sure it's good.
    Last edited by Tyranix95; 11-06-2016 at 06:02 PM.

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