TechSpot

Do I Need new Wireless Router??

By rmdl51
Jan 29, 2008
  1. Hello everybody, First I would like to tell you that I'm not a pro on networking, I do have plenty of knowledge about single pc units but my weakness is networks, however I do try to improve about this.

    Well that being said, I'm having a lot of problems with my router which is a Linksys WRT54G, I think is somewhat old but I don't know if being old is the cause it won't hold on on my current wireless needs.

    I have a Nintendo Wii, a PS3, a DS, a PSP, 2 Laptops, Wi-fi printer (Lexmark x4530) a Wireless PC and my Main PC which is wired. the problem is sometimes while playing online games on any of my consoles I get kicked out saying network problems, sometimes I have the whole network down and I don't even have internet on the wired PC and I have to go to my router settings and restore everything to the default settings and then recreate the WEP password and all that stuff.

    Big questions here: do I have too many wireless stuff for this router? is there a way to know if the router is malfunctioning, should I configure something to make it faster or better yet to prevent connection kickouts, I was thinking seriously on upgrading to a router which handles at least 108Mbps but I'm not sure if that will help and I might only have a bad setup, maybe I was thinking on the new 802.11n but still too expensive.

    Thanks for your advice!
     
  2. kimsland

    kimsland Ex-TechSpotter Posts: 14,524

    Check for updates

    Otherwise replace. I read a lot of posts, and eventually most replaced Linksys with another manufacturer.
     
  3. rmdl51

    rmdl51 TS Maniac Topic Starter Posts: 244

    Already update firmware, still the same problem.

    True, I was reading some reviews for even newer models and a lot of people have problems with range or speed, but I rather ask here before make a move.

    If I replace the router which one would you suggest?
     
  4. kimsland

    kimsland Ex-TechSpotter Posts: 14,524

    belkin.com

    But you may wish to wait for other responses, as I am not an authority in sales as such. (my area is service)
     
  5. jobeard

    jobeard TS Ambassador Posts: 9,348   +622

    For extra range, get a MIMO class router (RF Multiple In - Multiple out) but
    DO NOT GO with 802.11n! The N protocol is not yet a standard and likely to change.
    Mixing Vendors on the other end frequently results in major connectivity issues.

    Your issue is likely to the the PS3, Wii stuff as gaming REALLY loads the network --
    in fact there are specific routers designed for gaming -- goolge for it.
     
  6. rmdl51

    rmdl51 TS Maniac Topic Starter Posts: 244

    Thanks! I'll google a few more but as far as I've seen gaming router can be certainly so expensive, I've seen a couple of them for about $200 but I'm still not sure about a reliable brand, I'm considering netgear or D-link, but still $200 is too over my budget right now,
     
  7. tipstir

    tipstir TS Ambassador Posts: 2,393   +108

    OP can go with any of the 802.11g for now. Yes 802.11n is not standard. Know some network guys who have 802.11n but they've spent a lot on it. You have to buy from Netgear all N adapters an etc.. Some goes for Buffalo and Linksys. Belkin is another story. Dlink is very popular I use one of their wired routers and use Buffalo WHR-HP-G54 for wirless access point using 802.11g protocol.

    I can tell you also if you live in a condo and if everyone in your condo is using wireless you going to run out of channels and have serious problem in drops. 802.1n was suppose to take care of that. Now there is 802.11n with dual band. Meaning 2.4GHz and 5.0/5.8GHz single. If you go this method you'll need to buy DECT 6.0GHz cordless phone for the house.

    With my 802.11g wireless 2.4GHz I have to use 5.8GHz DSS digital phone. It's the only way to go for now...

    I would recommend getting a Buffalo WHR-HP-G54 for wireless has it has MIMO features and it had dual powered ANT. One inside and one out. Range is strong you also have a choice to turn it into a wireless bridge access point. I have two of these in my place one in the basement/family room network closet and one the second floor closet with 8-port Linksys switch.
     
  8. tipstir

    tipstir TS Ambassador Posts: 2,393   +108

    Dlink DGL 4500 is dual band it's more for gaming and yes it's pricey has it just came out. Those who have it like it. DIR-655 can be use for gaming but cost $119. But it's not dual band. You can get these 802.11n for now as they can be updated with software firmware to change them into the 802.11n standard when ever that happens. They will support 802.11g wireless for now. You can also turn off the wireless and use it as a powerful wired router also.

    Whatever you do don't get DGL 4100 or 4300 from Dlink thoses had some issues and don't support jumbo frames needed for 1000mbps. 2000mpbs is coming out in routers this year though.
     
  9. rmdl51

    rmdl51 TS Maniac Topic Starter Posts: 244

    Thanks for all the info tipstir!

    I don't live in a condo but closely, I live in some 2 level apartments which before I only see 2 wireless networks close to me but yesterday checking around I found 9 networks!! and one even stronger signal than mine, my gaming consoles (Ps3, Wii) are at the living room and router on my master bedroom which in distance could be aprox 45-50ft I don't know if that info helps but just wanna let you know I always get like 65-70% of signal strenght, on the bedroom always get 85-90% and this new network have 93% on the living room, so I was impressed by that signal strenght.

    Well back into the routers, I have a question, isn't more future proof to buy a router that does 802.11n and just select 802.11g for my current network needs? or I just can't do that the way it happened with 802.11b, i mean PSP is b and a Laptop has a USB adapter that's also b and they work fine with the current router, pardon my ignorance but is like I said I still got a lot to learn on the network matter. I would really appreciate if you could clear this up for me.

    I'm gonna check the prices on the models you suggest but definitely I would like to get a router that has gaming features because that's the main reason I want to use my wireless
     
  10. tipstir

    tipstir TS Ambassador Posts: 2,393   +108

    Test Drive

    The one I use as with most of them have 802.11b, 802.11g those with the N have 802.11b, 802.11g, 802.11n . There are some with 802.11a better but more expensive..

    Any router you buy today will have either the 3 of just the two if you go with 802.11g. I just went with 802.11g as that everything here is 802.11g. I did buy 802.11n but the router had bad firmware and I couldn't get DIR-655 at a too price. Now it's back but at the same price again $119.

    There is wireless router with 160GB HDD 802.11n so you could use it has NAS deviced. But the reviews on it's networking performance is bad...

    I would recommend you to get DIR-655 is been rated high and you can try it out using this:

    DIR-655 Emulator
    http://support.dlink.com/Emulators/dir655/login.html

    username is Admin
    password is blank

    DGL-4500 Emulator
    http://www.support.dlink.com/emulators/dgl4500/login.html

    username is Admin
    password: is blank

    Try those out... Gives you a test drive of what you can expect from the router GUI (graphical user interface)
     
  11. rmdl51

    rmdl51 TS Maniac Topic Starter Posts: 244

    I would like to get a Belkin Wireless G Plus MIMO for about $60 is that router ok for the gaming purposes, the box says it has gaming features due the MIMO but what do you think? I can get the Belkin Wireless N MIMO for about $70 but since all my devices are G I didn't consider this option, so what do you think? my problem is the budget right now, otherwise I would love to buy the DGL-4500 or at least the DIR-655 but this is the one is affordable for me right now, is it good?

    http://www.walmart.com/catalog/product.do?product_id=4722179

    Thanks!
     
  12. jobeard

    jobeard TS Ambassador Posts: 9,348   +622

    Avoid all -N products unless you are willing to replace all wireless cards with those from the same vendor!

    Historically, there are compatibility issues as the -N is not yet adopted as a 'standard' and each vendor's implementation is different :(
     
  13. rmdl51

    rmdl51 TS Maniac Topic Starter Posts: 244

    ok! I know it has been two months since I start this thread but I still face the same issues after upgrading to a belkin G plus MIMO, actually this router is worst, it won't let me play a single game via wireless on my Wii or PS3 without lag or being kicked out of the network, even my old linksys allows me to play a few games before being kicked out.

    Many good games just come out (and few more about to) and I'm ready to buy a good router because I want to play online wireless, doesn't matter if it's expensive (about $180-200) but I don't want to buy one that keeps giving me the same problem.

    I've researched all the gaming routers but all have few good feedback and too many bad comments. specially the ones I'm very interested on. DLG 4500 from D-link or WRT330N from Linksys.

    I insist on a gaming router that have special features to allow me give priority to gaming traffic, some have recommended different routers but like I said I just don't want to make another purchase in vain.

    could you suggest a good router with gaming features that you maybe tested or really know that performs good on wireless gaming for PS3 and Wii consoles. I'm about 40-50ft away from the main router and the signal needs to get through 2 walls just FYI, also Belkin router performs good on Laptop, very strong signal on the same location as the Wii & PS3, but the problem is that cannot keep a consistent connection.

    Also I upgraded my cordless phones to DECT 6.0 and moved router to higher location, no luck, same problem.

    BTW: people complain the WRT330N doesn't have WAP, but it seems to have PSK, isn't that the same? I've seen WAP-PSK somewhere but I might be wrong, anyway I still need to use WEP because my DS don't like any other security settings, but I just want to know. the DGL 4500 seems to have complains on the firmware and many people get drops, I don't know, some reviews seems to be made by people who doesn't have much knowledge, that why I come here to ask :)
     
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