1. TechSpot is dedicated to computer enthusiasts and power users. Ask a question and give support. Join the community here.
    TechSpot is dedicated to computer enthusiasts and power users.
    Ask a question and give support.
    Join the community here, it only takes a minute.
    Dismiss Notice

Cable vs. ADSL

By IBN ยท 24 replies
Dec 21, 2006
  1. Hi there,

    I am thinking of switching over to Cable. In my experience Cable is better. You guys have any thoughts?
  2. fastco

    fastco TS Booster Posts: 1,123

    I had DSL before cable and the speed is much better. If you live in a populated area you might see a small decrease in speed as you share the bandwidth with others with cable but it's still faster than DSL unless you have Verizon Fios which is as fast as cable broadband.
  3. chuck4456

    chuck4456 TS Rookie Posts: 37

    Cable's got it, hands down. My buddy's got dial-up. It's slow. I've had a few slow downs on Sunday afternoons with cable, for some reason. Definitely cable.
  4. Samstoned

    Samstoned TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,018

    check this
    if you are close to dsl hub can be very fast about half the cost
    my nephew lives about 3 block from hub dwnlds around 300kb/s sometimes higher
    not much more then that no tweaks on system that I know of ,I built it for him.
    I am on cable sometimes get as fast as 1.5mb/s dwnlds average about
    250-300kbs I have heavy nat traffic
    with direct line it goes up to about 700
    if you have voice over internet(digital phone) you can and will get slow cable speeds and the phone can break up when in use.
  5. IBN

    IBN TS Guru Topic Starter Posts: 487

    So what your saying is go for ADSL if your close to the exchange. And the line slows down on cable if you use VOIP?

    Wouldnt the speed slow down if your using VOIP on ADSL too?

    At the mo I am with an ADSL ISP. I get between 3.1mbps to 2.8mbps. I am thinking of switching over to a Cable ISP which gives 4mbps and then using a VOIP phone.

    From doing my research it looks like if I go cable i shoiuld be getting v close to 4mbps?

    How does VOIP affect the speed? Does if affect the speed only when your using the phone?
  6. olefarte

    olefarte TechSpot Ambassador Posts: 1,345   +13

    Everybody has different experiences, but I've got DSL and will never go back to cable. When I first got cable, I was one of the first in my town and it was very fast for the time. But as they added more customers, it slowed down, especially at peak times, and is still that way from what friends tell me. My DSL stays the same all the time. And another reason for me to like DSL, my cable company is very behind the times and only offers 1 MB, where I have 6 MB/768 kb DSL service. I think you can see why I prefer DSL, but in some locations obviously cable must be better.
  7. Tedster

    Tedster Techspot old timer..... Posts: 6,000   +15

    it's really a price for performance issue. DSL while cheaper, normally doesn't offer high speeds and actual speed varies greatly. The father you are from the hub, the worse the speed. Do your homework and find out where the hub is in relationship to your house. Moreover, most DSL contracts require you to have a standard land line for POTS service. (Plain old telephone). So you get charged for both.

    Cable, on the other hand, is generally fast. Service can be spotty in some areas. I had time warner cable both in El Paso and Killeen, TX. While El Paso service was excellent (never down), it is frequently down in Kileen. Yet cable is very expensive. You can get teaser deals from 3 to 6 months of reduced rates, but afterwards the service is astronomical.

    My father has DSL in the Washington DC area. His actual speed is close to 90kbs when it was advertised as 756kbs. Still, it is a far better deal than dial-up which he recently ditched and it is the same price.

    I have satellite service here in Iraq, and the service is terrible because the bandwidth is shared plus there are bunches of military firewalls. The speed is usually worse than dial-up and it is expensive. Then again this is a foreign country and the bandwidth is limited due to sharing with other soldiers. The customer service is non-existant and the price is expensive - about $65 a month plus $100 for initial fee.--still it is better than nothing.

    Vonage is great. I use it all the time back home. If I get a scratchy call, I just redial. - and that's not often.
  8. zephead

    zephead TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,569

    i would say that cable is better. your local cable company may not be too great, but the broadband technology behind cable is quite brilliant. nowadays, a single 2 conductor cable can provide HD television (as well as many other cool TV features), high speed internet, and digital telephone service to any home or business. without cable, you would need 3 separate technologies for TV, internet access, and telephones.

    currently, the comcast service available here (chicago and its neighboring regions) smoke DSL with speeds generally 4 times faster (6Mb/s vs 1.5Mb/s). when DSL became popular, many people were upset about the idea of having to replace nearly every telephone switch in the country. DSL also presents the problems arising from proximity to the switching equipment. the telephone systems used by DSL have a much narrower frequency range (bandwidth) than coaxial cable systems do. as the name implies, broadband cable has much more available bandwidth and multiplexing support. with cable, there is no need to go around installing filters.
  9. Superinc

    Superinc TS Rookie Posts: 66

    cable .
  10. Nodsu

    Nodsu TS Rookie Posts: 5,837   +6

    You shouldn't really compare the technologies - it is all about the company that brings you the service.

    DSL2 goes up to 24Mbit download, cable goes to 30Mbit.. Are you actually going to get a service with those speeds? Do you actually have any of these available in your location?

    If your DSL company guarantees you 20Mbit (they measure the signal at your house), then that's what you will get. If you are silly enough not to read the fine print that says your speed may be lower than advertised, it is your fault. Make sure you get your phone line measured and the maximum speed quoted so you know what you pay for.

    Cable speeds are not guaranteed either. Your upload will slow down your download and your speed may be influenced by the internet activities of your neighbours (unlike DSL, cable lines are shared between many customers).

    At least around here, you can get phone, digital TV, VOIP over DSL too. It's all about your service provider.

    And again, it's not about cable vs DSL but what kinds of providers you have available. Look around what speeds are offered, ask around what the quality of the service is in your location. It won't help you at all if some Verizon office across the continent has excellent staff and infrastructure (according to some random forum member). The branch in your town may have an extremely overloaded failure-prone network and ***** engineers/support staff.
  11. IBN

    IBN TS Guru Topic Starter Posts: 487

    How does VOIP affect the speed? Does if affect the speed only when your using the phone?
  12. jobeard

    jobeard TS Ambassador Posts: 10,432   +801

    I'm 7.5 miles from the switch(exchange) and DLS is impossible at that distance.
    I had to wait for years for HS/Broadband via cable, but when it arrived it was a blessing :0

    One technical difference, DSL is subject to far more *errors and retries* than
    cable. True, any ethernet is subject to collision errors, but the recovery is
    far better than rs323 serial lines and DSL.

    On the other hand, a cable link can be snooped very easily for everything on
    the same subnet, while DSL is a point-to-point connection to the switch.
  13. Samstoned

    Samstoned TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,018

    yes, only when using the phone
    it is sharing the bandwidth
    I have tracked this data with logs
    plus the phone voice can breakup as well(with heavy downloading)
    there are tweaks to help repair this
    as I say if you go with a non plan cancel at any time dsl around 25.00usd in states 3mb dwn
    comcast about 6mb dwn at 42.00 usd
    if you need to balance your needs ver. investment
    I do a lot of heavy dwnld up cable is a must
    otherwise I am on the end of hub and with tweaks I get an average with dsl of 200kbs dwn
    web traffic the server and time of day play big rule in speeds
  14. tipstir

    tipstir TS Ambassador Posts: 2,425   +112

    COX High Speed Cable Broadband

    Rated at 17Mbp Download Stream
    Rated at 2Mbp Upstream

    Speedeasy results are:


  15. zephead

    zephead TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,569

    yes, selecting internet service does depend on what is available to you in your area. but if given the choice between good DSL service and equally good cable service, i would take cable.
  16. Boogityboo04

    Boogityboo04 TS Rookie Posts: 302

    I don't know about that, DSL is less prone to slowups at high load hours... I have a DSL line that stays at a consistent 4mbit/sec all day but my neighbors cable goes from 5mbit/sec at 1pm to 256kbit/sec at 6pm. At work we have a direct fiber optic connection to TDS Metrocom, sometimes I see 100mbit/sec :).
  17. zephead

    zephead TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,569

    the slow period you are describing is caused by local factors. i could argue just the opposite, as i have seen every SBC business DSL customer in the area experience dramatic slowdowns during night and weekend hours...although there is nothing in the service agreement that suggests such a thing would happen. in my neighborhood, cable happens to be the fastest. in yours, cable is slower.

    i think that the main advantage of cable is the fact that the technology also offers HD television with cool features such as on-demand.
  18. tipstir

    tipstir TS Ambassador Posts: 2,425   +112

    I used to have what was call SBC Yahoo! Dial then SBC Yahoo! DSL at 1.5mbps, 3.8mbps then 6mbps. The avg speed was less that it was reported by them.

    3.8mbps even with all the network tweaks, using ultra phone line cat 5e from belkin to DSL Speedstream 5360 and connected to cat 5e ethernet cable from the main phone line to a phone jack box just made for this setup. I got 2.6mbps. But around 3am every morning the DSL would go down for updates as they had claimed.

    The middle of this year I got them to give me what you call DSL Pro 6mbps, but I had nothing but problems, but my avg was 4 to 5mbps when it worked. The problem was, the pro wasn't available or close enough to where I was so I could only get 5mbps plus if I had kept the 6mbps I would have fired my lines for phone service. FC doesn't allow that speed so I got knock back to 3mpbs. Where I had moved to now it would have been worst 1.5mbps. So I've dropped to what I have now..

    17mbps downstream
    2mbps upstream

    I had the new place where I moved to re-wired for digital HDTV cable and broadband high speed cable so everything is higher gauge coax. Also from the street pole cable coming to the house is higher than avg to get the best speed.

    The only feature I have to give up with the extra download speed from the advertise 15mbps to 17mbps was upstream as you can see from the above post. They're suppose to hit 20mbps soon as former SBC Yahoo! DSL will hit 20mbps with fiber optical for the AT&T Yahoo! DSL in a few years but some areas have that now I was told..
  19. cfitzarl

    cfitzarl TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 1,975   +9

    Anybody here have Fiber Optics? I just got it a few weeks ago, and the speed is phenominal at 15MBPS (about 1.2-1.3MBPS download speed).
  20. Nodsu

    Nodsu TS Rookie Posts: 5,837   +6

    Needs to tell the difference between b and B..
  21. GeekieNick101

    GeekieNick101 TS Rookie Posts: 373

    I have Comcast cable interent and its rated at 4 M download and 3 something k and my average results are 10.5 m download and 700 k upload. For some reaosn I'm getting faster speeds for what I'm paying for but it might be becuase nobody on my street has cable internet since they had to put a special box on the line pole so the internet would work. And as far as DSL goes the only DSL I can get is through Verizon and I tried to get dsl before cable internet and they said I couldnt get it when all along I could their system mistaked my address and I just order it about 3 weeks ago but cancelled it becuase they were having problems with tests to see if we could get it saying their was no dail tone on the line and since theirs a contract and I know it will be nothing but problems so I'm jsut sticking with cable its really fast and nice.
  22. Tmagic650

    Tmagic650 TS Ambassador Posts: 17,244   +234

    The biggest advantage of Cable over ADSL is VoIP... I use Vonage over Cable and I have no land line phone. ADSL users have to have a land line phone line. Vonage with unlimited long distance calling and a toll-free number $33/month. My old Qwest land line $65 to $125/month limited long distance, no toll-free number
  23. GeekieNick101

    GeekieNick101 TS Rookie Posts: 373

    Yeah its a really good advantage but when the power is out unless you have a back power system your VOIP doesnt work where if you have a plain old corded phone with landline then it would work as well as business owners get dsl to have extra lines through VOIP and use the landline for their house. But yeah it is very nice to have VOIP and now with fiber optic slowy changing landline when the power goes out no phone so its about the same thing.
  24. Tmagic650

    Tmagic650 TS Ambassador Posts: 17,244   +234

    We have a cell phone for use when the power goes down. Luckily we don't have as much ice around here as they do on the east coast. Ice really messes with power. Our power outages don't last more than a few minutes usually. While I lived in Virginia, we lost power for 5 days once!
  25. zephead

    zephead TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,569

    i rarely experience a power outage, but when that happens i use my cell phone...i'm sure cell phones have significantly reduced the absolute need to have a working land line even during the short time when the power is out.
Topic Status:
Not open for further replies.

Similar Topics

Add New Comment

You need to be a member to leave a comment. Join thousands of tech enthusiasts and participate.
TechSpot Account You may also...