Windows 8 and 8.1 Forums


Can someone explain the ins & outs of router speeds to me?

  1. #1


    Perth, Western Australia
    Posts : 69
    7 Pro & 8.1 Pro & 8.1 Pro

    Can someone explain the ins & outs of router speeds to me?


    I have an N600 gigabit modem/router at the moment. I also have an iPad Air, iPhone 5S, new desktop with inbuilt Wifi, a laptop, a 3Tb NAS and a new Smart 3D TV. My desktop is currently wired into the modem. The laptop is wireless and the TV is wireless. Both the laptop and the desktop are Windows 8.1 Pro.

    If I try to watch a large 3D video file(over 12Gb) on my TV, off my desktop or my NAS, the movie constantly "buffers". This suggests to me that the TV can't stream fast enough from the shared folder on the desktop/NAS. Right?

    So I bought a new super duper 3200AC Tri-Band Wifi Router. It does N600(2.4GHz) and 2 X 1300AC(5GHz) Wifi bands. I have read extensively about wireless speed comparisons etc but I still have a couple of questions?

    I assume 1300AC is faster than a wired gigabit connection? So if I go "wireless" from my desktop it should be faster than "wired"? Right?

    The NAS is gigabit "wired" so no improvement there? Right?

    The Smart TV is currently limited by the N600? Right? So the AC1300 SHOULD vastly improve it's streaming? Right? From the desktop AND from the NAS? Right?

    Assume that when I'm watching TV the desktop is switched on, obviously the TV is switched on, the laptop is switched off, the iPad maybe on and the iPhone is basically off. Assume that everything is new enough to use the "AC" band

    So the 2 X AC1300 should be a vast improvement on the N600? Right?

    I would appreciate an answer from a "Wifi expert".

    Thanks in anticipation.....

      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  2. #2


    Central IL
    Posts : 3,468
    Linux Mint 17.2


    Your best resource will be smallnetbuilder.com.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  3. #3


    Quote Originally Posted by louwin View Post
    I assume 1300AC is faster than a wired gigabit connection? So if I go "wireless" from my desktop it should be faster than "wired"? Right?
    Theoretically yes, however you have to be very close to approach those types of speeds and not have any issue with interference.

    Quote Originally Posted by louwin View Post
    So the 2 X AC1300 should be a vast improvement on the N600? Right?
    Do you have any client devices that have wireless AC cards? Without the client's having 802.11ac cards, you most likely won't see any change.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  4. #4


    Quote Originally Posted by louwin View Post
    I also have an iPad Air,
    Unless you have the very newest model just released, that doesn't support 802.11ac.


    Quote Originally Posted by louwin View Post
    iPhone 5S,
    doesn't support 802.11ac


    Quote Originally Posted by louwin View Post
    new desktop with inbuilt Wifi,
    But is it 802.11ac? Probably not. Probably 801.11n



    Quote Originally Posted by louwin View Post
    a laptop,
    Again, is it 802.11ac?

    Quote Originally Posted by louwin View Post
    Assume that everything is new enough to use the "AC" band
    Oh, that is a very bad assumption to make. My late 2013 MacBook Pro includes it, but nothing prior to that did.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  5. #5


    Perth, Western Australia
    Posts : 69
    7 Pro & 8.1 Pro & 8.1 Pro


    I THOUGHT the iPad Air and iPhone 5S were 802.11ac enabled but if you say not then I accept that. I am sure they ARE 5GHz though. I suspect I wrongly(?) associated 5GHz with 802.11ac.

    The laptop I know isn't 802.11ac, in fact, I doubt it is 5GHz either.

    But I am sure my new desktop IS 802.11ac. I have checked the motherboard User Guide and it does confirm 802.11ac

    So are you saying a device can be 5GHz enabled without being 802.11ac?

    Are you also saying that the 1300ac bands cannot be used by non-802.11ac devices?

    Sorry, I'm totally confused now

    Looks like I have to go back to the drawing (reading?) board

    BTW thanks for your responses
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  6. #6


    Posts : 123
    Windows 8.1


    G - Single band 2.4 GHz
    N - Dual band 2.4 GHz + 5 GHz, or could be Single Band 2.4 GHz most current cheapo Laptops/Smart TVs have a Wireless Card like that.
    ac - 5 GHz (Dual band + 2.4 GHz because devices with this standard are generally backward compatible with N and G).

    G uses 1 channel.

    N and ac use MIMO i.e. multiple channels.

    That is the outline position (there is lot in the finer detail, look it up...) though you have to realise that speed between 2 devices will be at the speed of the slowest device.
    IEEE 802.11 - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  7. #7


    Quote Originally Posted by louwin View Post
    I THOUGHT the iPad Air and iPhone 5S were 802.11ac enabled but if you say not then I accept that. I am sure they ARE 5GHz though. I suspect I wrongly(?) associated 5GHz with 802.11ac.
    Yeah, 5ghz doesn't indicate 802.11ac. The 5.0Ghz band is also used in 802.11n.

    Quote Originally Posted by louwin View Post
    So are you saying a device can be 5GHz enabled without being 802.11ac?
    Yes, exactly.

    Quote Originally Posted by louwin View Post
    Are you also saying that the 1300ac bands cannot be used by non-802.11ac devices?
    Correct, you will NOT get anywhere near 802.11ac speeds unless your devices all have 802.11ac network cards.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  8. #8


    Perth, Western Australia
    Posts : 69
    7 Pro & 8.1 Pro & 8.1 Pro


    Quote Originally Posted by louwin View Post
    Are you also saying that the 1300ac bands cannot be used by non-802.11ac devices?
    Quote Originally Posted by pparks1 View Post
    Correct, you will NOT get anywhere near 802.11ac speeds unless your devices all have 802.11ac network cards.
    Sorry to stress this....

    Are you saying that NON 802.11ac devices WILL work with 1300ac BUT not as fast????

    As I said - my motherboard in the desktop PC IS 802.11ac so no problem there.

    BUT as you suggested nothing else is definitely 802.11ac. The desktop is wired which was suggested to be as fast if not faster than 1300ac. The TV, even though it accepts 5GHz, MAY not be 802.11ac. The TV is about 2 months old....

    If the TV and all my other devices that will accept 5GHz WILL work then I will connect the new router. If they WON'T work at all then it is pointless connecting it

    I suppose I can "wire" in the TV with a CAT-6 cable across the floor The TV is about 20 feet away, no walls

    Will the old modem in "bridge mode" AND the new router be faster than the old N600 modem/router?

    I suppose I COULD connect it all and see but my fear of HARDWARE will give me nightmares
    Last edited by louwin; 03 Nov 2014 at 09:48.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  9. #9


    Existing devices will work with the new router, it will just use the older bands. You can have 802.11g,n,AC all working together.

    The top speed will be limited by the slowest device in the chain. For example, if you have a desktop that is AC, and your NAS is gigabit hardwired, you could get gigabit speeds between them (as long as you are close enough to your router to get those speeds. However, if you are transferring between your desktop running AC, and your laptop does 802.11g, you will only get up to 54 megabits between the two of them.

    Think of each device as having a garden hose attaching it to the network. Those with very large hoses, can move more water more quickly. Those with smaller hoses can still move water, it will just be limited by the size of their hose.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  10. #10


    Perth, Western Australia
    Posts : 69
    7 Pro & 8.1 Pro & 8.1 Pro


    Just a quick update....

    Yesterday (Sunday) tried the installation....

    Did all the right things.

    Closed ALL programs that access the net on my "wired" desktop.

    Went into the TP-Link N600 modem/router (192.168.1.1) and changed to "Bridge" mode. It released everything but I turned it off anyway. I normally use Firefox but used IE

    Plugged the yellow ethernet cable into the LAN/WAN port of the modem and the other end into the INTERNET port of the router.

    Moved my "wired" cable from the modem to the router.

    Tried everything I couldn't get it to work (And you wonder why I am afraid of hardware)

    The "Power" LED would sometimes blink orange (which suggested the firmware was being updated????). The "Internet" LED was first solid white then changed to orange. Then blinked orange

    Tried everything. Even swapped the ethernet cable (used the one off my NAS that has been working for months) - no luck.

    Logged into the Wifi with my iPad and logged in with (www.routerlogin.net) the Internet had an "X" on it and the tab was "greyed out".

    Gave up and went to play cards for a while.

    Tried again later, still no luck.

    Then couldn't get the modem/router out of "Bridge" mode, had to do a "Factory Defaults" reset. Did I mention, I hate hardware?

    Will give it a try again NOW. In desperation I borrowed an old Netgear DGND3700v2 to try in place of my TP-Link.

    Fingers crossed....
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

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Can someone explain the ins & outs of router speeds to me?
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