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Whats the best way to set up PC, PS3, Xbox

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January 24, 2012 5:43:59 PM

Hello,

After moving my room around and merging my office with my bedroom I now have a PS3, PC and Xbox 360s all in the same room next to each other.
My question is what's the best way to connect them to my router/Internet (currently downstairs)

Bit of info:
My router is a BT Home Hub 3 and it can’t be moved from where it is now as I have a master socket from BT in the wall with no socket upstairs or in my room to swap it too
My PC is has Gigabit port but is currently using wireless N Netgear adapter at 120 Mbps max
My PS is using wireless not sure what speed
And same goes for my Xbox

Ideally I’m thinking to use a powerline adapter from my router downstairs plugged into the gigabit port and then run it to my room and connect it some sort of splitter to which I would plug all three into something like this -

Any advice would be appreciated all I want to do is get a faster connection possible as I use my ps3 to listen to vidzone, pc and Xbox for online gaming
Also is powerline any good?

Thanks
Tim

More about : whats set ps3 xbox

January 24, 2012 6:13:48 PM

Powerline never gets anywhere near the rated speed, so if you do go that way, go with the 500megabit model and hope it works. Depends on your wiring and your luck. I just got a pair of ZyXEL PLA4205 adapters from Newegg for $80 on sale and they work pretty well on some circuit combinations.

Obviously, the fastest would be to run a CAT5e cable but that may be impractical.

Can you get a good wireless signal from the Netgear up there?

edit: if you run powerline or a cable up there connect it to an inexpensive switch or router in AP mode if you also want wireless up there.
January 25, 2012 6:17:12 AM

My router is BT and I get ok signal and doesn’t really drop out but I would prefer it a bit faster
All I get from running a cable is my mum shouting "whys there a bloody cable around the house"
I am pc literate and good with majority of things apart from networking, a switch is just a thing with Ethernet ports I’m assuming to act as a splitter? And an AP is just the same or does it add wireless?

Thanks
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January 25, 2012 12:12:06 PM

Indeed a switch is just to make multiple connections (as you say a splitter), although each could use the full bandwidth if the others are not.

An AP is a wireless access point, which you can configure using many different brands of router.
January 25, 2012 6:59:10 PM

what do you think would be better ap or switch? im thinking a switch also lets say im unlucky with the powerline is there going to be much improvement from 130mbps wireless?
January 25, 2012 7:45:02 PM

If you are going to wire all three devices, get a switch -- they are cheaper than routers that you can configure as an AP.

Let's put it this way: if you are lucky your Powerline will exceed your wireless, if you are unlucky it will not be that good. If you have multiple electric circuits upstairs and down, try different combinations and you might get better results on one particular arrangement.
January 26, 2012 8:33:09 AM

ok thanks for the help might give it ago and make sure i get them from somewhere i can return them if there not good enough
January 26, 2012 1:42:29 PM

tim_bethany said:
ok thanks for the help might give it ago and make sure i get them from somewhere i can return them if there not good enough


That's a good plan, no reason to be stuck with them if they won't do the job.
January 26, 2012 7:32:43 PM

also whats the best way to test my connection, i know clicking on my wireless status will show me the speed but not sure i trust it, any free programs i can use to test my wireless then i can use it when i get powerline?
January 26, 2012 7:45:17 PM

I generally just download a large file within my network and look at the Windows transfer speeds under the details in the transfer window or run speedtest.net on my browser from different machines to see if they deliver the same speed as the wired gateway.

There are some free tools that I've used that are okay -- LAN SPEED TEST, just don't let it install any of its other stuff; and inDDIDer, which mainly looks at signal strength for wireless, but has other useful diagnostics.
February 1, 2012 12:53:23 PM

Just a word of reason; if you are connecting to the Internet for gaming and streaming video, your Internet service may be bottlenecking your speed WAAAY before the 150mbps mark, making this exercise of speeding up your home network futile.

For perspective, I just ran the utility at speedtest.net and found my strong FiOS fiber optic connection was getting 20.47 Mbps download, 4.91mbps upload. When I lived in my apartment last month, the DSL connection gave about a fifth of that speed. Now, I ran a physical bloody cable up the stairs into the gateway because the wifi router was very sketchy about dropping the service a few times a week (worked again with a simple reboot, but sometimes would go offline again in an hour... I HATED that thing! Wanted to boot it out onto the street and put a hammer and several trucks to it), so if you're having stability problems go ahead and seek solutions.

I just doubt you'll see performance gains from complicating your network setup. That said, I am trying to enable a wireless client bridge so I can connect Ethernet devices to my wifi network on the cheap, so if you want to follow my thread as I'm working it out, feel free. I need wireless-to-Ethernet on the cheap because I've just moved back to my Mom's after college temporarily, and she's the type to use "The Matrix" movie as a reason why all things digital are bad (which makes my interest in gaming & graphic design difficult).

In my case, if I wasn't tempted by saving a few $ and having a portable wi-fi router for later, I would've just bought this device for the purpose: http://www.google.com/products/catalog?q=wireless+clien...
February 1, 2012 10:00:37 PM

I don't think it's relevant to what you were asking for (which, unless you have a corporate or university-grade Internet connection all to yourself, wouldn't improve your experience), but I got the little wireless client bridge I mentioned before working. My thread here:
http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/forum2.php?config=tom...

Again, I think your needs are already met as good as you can get if you are playing online, without upgrading your Internet service. You aren't going to get faster Internet speeds by adding a hard line connection between your router and your devices, since your current bandwidth in your house greatly exceeds most home Internet services.
February 2, 2012 9:22:54 AM

Literally just came on to ask the question will it improve my speeds lol, so I was about to buy -
http://www.netgear.co.uk/home/products/powerline-and-co...
but wasn’t sure that apart from stability will it make my gamin g and downloading any faster my wireless varies between 130max to 54Mbps and my download speed from my isp is at 2.4 Mbps so does that mean I’m not actually getting anywhere near the 130 my wireless says? Or are they two different connections?
February 2, 2012 12:33:34 PM

It's true... You've got a lot of headroom over a 2.4mbps bottleneck. I don't blame you for thinking a faster router or hard connection would improve your Internet gaming speeds; all the networking companies' marketing would have you think that "only high-speed, wireless N routers are suitable for gaming." Sly coyotes. But they know how the enthusiast market will freely spend money we they think we will improve our entertainment.

The only reasons for you to throw more money at the problem are if you are having range, stability, or too many devices trying to connect issues. On the bright side, it sounds like you have a great environment for LAN games :)  or streaming media between all your devices.

P.S. I only just realized with the "New Post!" email that this is the UK & Ireland forum, lol. Hello from across the pond! :) 
February 2, 2012 12:40:58 PM

Just watched the product tour video on the right of the page. The girl at 2:55 is cute! Wonder what she's so surprised about? Lololol...
February 2, 2012 12:48:48 PM

My ISP only gives me 3.2Mbps, but I need a much higher LAN bandwidth for streaming full 1080p video with HD sound. No question that it is a waste to spend money for more network than you need, but there are many instances where your LAN needs to be faster than your ISP connection.

I've been fairly disappointed with the latest crop of 500Mbps powerline devices, the best speeds I've seen within a single room (i.e. same electrical circuit -- non GFI) is around 90Mbps write and 110Mbps read using fast devices at each end (SATA 6 ssds) so that they are not the bottleneck. No where near good enough to stream 1080p. Looks like a few more CAT 5e runs coming.
February 2, 2012 6:14:00 PM

RealBeast said:
My ISP only gives me 3.2Mbps, but I need a much higher LAN bandwidth for streaming full 1080p video with HD sound. No question that it is a waste to spend money for more network than you need, but there are many instances where your LAN needs to be faster than your ISP connection.

I've been fairly disappointed with the latest crop of 500Mbps powerline devices, the best speeds I've seen within a single room (i.e. same electrical circuit -- non GFI) is around 90Mbps write and 110Mbps read using fast devices at each end (SATA 6 ssds) so that they are not the bottleneck. No where near good enough to stream 1080p. Looks like a few more CAT 5e runs coming.


I know what I know, yet mostly I don't know what I don't know; How does a 300mbps highway improve the speed of 3.2mbps traffic? It is not an analogue system, so AFAIK one can't amplify digital data, and I've never read anything about network products somehow sucking more information out of a 3.2mbps pipe.

Your second paragraph seems to be about sharing media from within your LAN. I really am curious if I'm missing something, because I watch 1080p YouTube video all the time with my wireless G carded Mac hooked up to my HDTV, and sharing iTunes 1080p media over our LAN here works fine too.

My face right now is a big ?
February 2, 2012 6:33:31 PM

Yes, you are missing something about full HD media streaming -- I am doing full HD video with HD audio streaming with little compression, playing a BluRay movie over a network, and that takes in the range of around 100 - 150 mbps minimum to avoid lag.

HERE is a good video bitrate calculator that will assist you in seeing the difference -- it is really a large amount of data. One way for you to actually test your network for this is to play a BluRay iso image on your computer from the hard drive of another network computer. That will demonstrate the point. Also note that while the BD video standard a maximum data transfer rate of 54mbps, you have to also account for additional network overhead and that increases the bandwidth you need in real life to over 100mbps in my experience.

The YouTube videos that you mention are highly compressed and can easily transfer over wireless G. It is difficult to get wireless N at any distance to do the ~ 100 - 150 mbps minimum and none of the powerline units that I've tested have proven up to the task. Gigabit wired Ethernet is about all that is adequate.
February 2, 2012 7:04:09 PM

Thanks for the cool-headed info... As I said, there are unknown unknowns :) 

I don't have experience with Blu-ray players to be honest... My plan was to skip a blu-ray player unless I need something that happens to have one built in. I personally believe that DVD is/was the last great mainstream physical media medium, and that HD content from the Internet will be the next mainstream thing as broadband becomes cheaper, faster, and more widely available, Blu-ray mostly having a place with movie buffs with an affinity for physical mediums (there is a place for that!). That said, I might put disposable income into Blu-ray some day purely for HD audio... Unless I go the analogue route with record albums. Ah, audio/videophiles :pt1cable: 

Good info on that bitrate calculator!

I think the OP has enough info to make decisions based on what he's asked so far, and I've learned a bit too... I think I don't have anything further to add at this point.
!