Modem/Router? Huh!?

So I've been out of the internet game since dail-up was popular (makes me sound old but I'm only 23 lol). I've used broadband at varsity, etc. but I've never had internet at home since the dail-up days (using my blackberry for all my interneting needs).

I saw this great looking deal from a ISP called MWEB (I'm from South Africa) which is R199 ($25) for uncapped albeit shaped ADSL 1Mb/s (R339 [$40] including line rental). I can't find lower prices anywhere else so I think I go for this.

MWEB says I have to buy my own Modem/Router thingy. I can buy one from them for R599 ($70) but I don't know which brand or whatever it is. So I was thinking of getting my own instead and now I turn to the great community of Tom's Hardware to help me out once again on making a good buying decision.

So my questions are:

1) Should I just with everything MWEB throws at me?

2) Should I get my own Modem/Router?

3) If so what should I look for in a Modem/Router?

4) Do different Modems/Routers actually give different performance?

5) And finally (albeit a bit unrelated to the hardware) is a contention ratio of 20:1 good?

Thanks in advance again. :)
4 answers Last reply
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  1. Your internet connection is going to be an ADSL connection.

    You have two options. Go for an ADSL modem router. Or an ADSL Modem and a router
  2. 1) Should I just with everything MWEB throws at me?
    A) What make and model is the company providing?

    2) Should I get my own Modem/Router?
    A) Yes, if the company is providing an inferior quality of modem/router.

    3) If so what should I look for in a Modem/Router?
    A) ADSL modem capability

    4) Do different Modems/Routers actually give different performance?
    A) At a speed of 1Mbps, modem hardly matters, routers do give different performance in your local area network(wired+wireless) but no difference internet speed.

    5) And finally (albeit a bit unrelated to the hardware) is a contention ratio of 20:1 good?
    A) Contention ratio means how many more people you have to share internet connection with. In this case 20:1, meaning you and 19 other people will share the internet connection. That better than a 50:1 connection. X:1 lower the X, better the connection speed.
  3. That's my view.. :) wait for my senior members to reply on that before acting on my advice.
  4. Thanks a lot for your quick response.

    I don't know what make or model the company has available but I will come back as soon as I find out.

    But thanks a lot for the answers as I believe I have a better understanding of what's going on now.

    Also I am quite envious of foreign countries with cheap high-speed internet lol hope South Africa catches up in the next couple of years so I can rock that 10mb/s line for the price I'll be paying for this 1mb/s. But its still cheaper than anything else available at the moment so I'm grateful that my country is showing some growth.

    Thanks again :)
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