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Why so few Wireless N Dual Band adapter PCI cards, only USB adapters i

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December 22, 2010 4:55:04 PM

There has been several Wireless N Dual Band routers/APs out in the market for quite some time now, and there are several Wireless N Dual Band USB adapters out there. But as for PCI/PCI-X card adapters, there seems to be only *one* (the Linksys WMP600N). Why is that? I find it very strange. Is it because the USB adapters are easier to install, and can be used on multiple computers? But if so, why isn't it the same case with single band (2.4 Ghz) wireless N adapters? Because for these ones there as many PCI card adapters as there are USB adapters.
Also, can the USB adapters, despite the lack of external antenna, offer the same level of performance as a card with external antennas?
December 22, 2010 5:33:09 PM

daiphoenix said:
There has been several Wireless N Dual Band routers/APs out in the market for quite some time now, and there are several Wireless N Dual Band USB adapters out there. But as for PCI/PCI-X card adapters, there seems to be only *one* (the Linksys WMP600N). Why is that? I find it very strange. Is it because the USB adapters are easier to install, and can be used on multiple computers? But if so, why isn't it the same case with single band (2.4 Ghz) wireless N adapters? Because for these ones there as many PCI card adapters as there are USB adapters.
Also, can the USB adapters, despite the lack of external antenna, offer the same level of performance as a card with external antennas?


Well the USB 2.0 interface offers 60MBps of bandwidth to the machine, whereas PCI offers 133MBps of bandwidth. Theoretically, USB is slower, but USB 2.0 still is faster than the maximum bandwidth of 802.11n (300Mbps vs. 480Mbps). So, the difference in performance is nominal. What makes a bigger difference is the quality of the antenna. In my experience, my Cisco AE1000 802.11n USB WLAN Adapter has given me no problems, even at a good distance. I'm running 144Mbps of throughput to the router at a distance of 40 ft through two exterior brick walls. So, yes, in my opinion the popularity of USB dongles is due to their ease of use and portability. Hope this helps :D 


I award you two bouncies for a good and interesting question:

:bounce:  :bounce: 
a b F Wireless
December 22, 2010 5:39:33 PM


In addition to all that, far moe laptops are now sold than desktop PCs - a USB adapter will fit both but a PCI card will not.



January 29, 2011 7:49:39 PM

Psychoteddy said:
Well the USB 2.0 interface offers 60MBps of bandwidth to the machine, whereas PCI offers 133MBps of bandwidth. Theoretically, USB is slower, but USB 2.0 still is faster than the maximum bandwidth of 802.11n (300Mbps vs. 480Mbps). So, the difference in performance is nominal. What makes a bigger difference is the quality of the antenna. In my experience, my Cisco AE1000 802.11n USB WLAN Adapter has given me no problems, even at a good distance. I'm running 144Mbps of throughput to the router at a distance of 40 ft through two exterior brick walls. So, yes, in my opinion the popularity of USB dongles is due to their ease of use and portability. Hope this helps :D 


I award you two bouncies for a good and interesting question:

:bounce:  :bounce: 


But then why isn't it the same case with single-band Wireless N, where there are plenty of PCI(x) adapters? After all the single-band and dual-band in Wireless N were developed at pretty much the same time, right?
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