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flyinonice4

join:2009-06-12
Phoenix, AZ

1 edit

Best Wireless N Adapter

Hello all,
I am looking for a new adapter to replace the wireless-g in my HTPC. I have a pci slot open (my graphics card takes up the PCI-E slot and hovers over the one next to it). The two I have looked at and seem to have good reviews are »www.amazon.com/TP-LINK-TL-WN822N···+adapter and »www.amazon.com/TP-LINK-TL-WN951N···reless+n
Obviously one is a pci and one is a usb. Is there anything better around the $20-30 price range? Does the difference between usb and pci really make that big a difference (it will have to be able to handle a high volume of downloading)?



jap
Premium
join:2003-08-10
038xx

TP-Link makes middle-grade consumer gear that's well organized, usually well documented, and CustServ is above average if there's a problem. That said, adapters are comodity items and theirs are built around the same handful of available chips and SoCs as dozens of others. In other words, performance at the core level is identical and what matters is antennae and quality of enclosure (including ventilation).

As to internal vs. USB, the former is nice because it's out of the way and doesn't consume a USB port but avoid ones with the antennae(s) mounted on the card: slammed against the back of a steel case is a crap place for antennae. There are PCI cards with corded antennae on a nice magnetic base. USB is more popular due to ease of install, use-it-on-any-device flexibility, and can utilize a USB extension cord to locate the adapter in a good reception spot.

Watch out for the few "draft N" adapters still floating around. You want ratified N.

BTW, what's the make & model of the wireless router this adapter is going to talk to? Your main concern should be positioning of the adapter antennae for best signal to/from the other devices it's expected to interact with.

Recommend you shop NewEgg rather than Amazon. --- »www.newegg.com/Wireless-Adapters···Adapters

Cheers!

edit: I didn't speak to your proposed TP-Link devices because your links are broken.


flyinonice4

join:2009-06-12
Phoenix, AZ

Thank you for responding so quick. I updated the links and the should work now. Don't know why it got muddled in the first place .
It will be communicating with a asus rt-n56u. I have 40mbps/5mbps internet so I am just wondering if the usb will bottleneck at all (it shouldn't, but I feel like that is more of a risk with usb than pci).
The reason I was looking at Amazon is because I have some gift cards to use up there. Otherwise I would be shopping at newegg.



jap
Premium
join:2003-08-10
038xx
reply to flyinonice4

Well PCI is a lower level of logic and less targeted by malware but I don't think you should worry about it. USB-2 has proven much more robust than predecessors and - as long as you stay away from un-powered hubs - it shouldn't be a problem. The weakness in your transport chain will always be the RF between router & adapter.

The PCI card you're looking at is, at core, superior to the USB. The MEMO and other supported protocols do help in RF polluted environments. But the lack of antennae location flexibility kills those advantage in most situations. Either one should handily exceed your needs so go with whichever lets you sleep better at night.



mozerd
Light Will Pierce The Darkness
Premium,MVM
join:2004-04-23
Nepean, ON

1 edit
reply to flyinonice4

The adapter I suggest
802.11ac Dual-band Wireless-AC1750 PCI-E Adapter

Its not in the $20-30 price range --- newegg sells it for $99.99
From a performance perspective the AC1750 is outstanding -- and in your situation --- works great with your asus rt-n56u plus if you ever upgrade to the AC classs like the Asus RT-AC66U you'll be thrilled.
--
David Mozer
IT-Expert on Call
Information Technology for Home and Business



jap
Premium
join:2003-08-10
038xx

1 edit

said by mozerd:

in your situation --- works great with your asus rt-n56u plus if you ever upgrade to the AC classs like the Asus RT-AC66U you'll be thrilled.

Why you'll be able to watch 8 HD films at once rather than only 5!

Sorry, David, but it's more than a little show-boaty to push $100 adapters for zero immediate gain. By the time flyinonice4 or 90% of the rest of us buys an 802.11ac router the adapters will be under $50. Total waste of money. Nevermind the thing won't even fit in his PCI slot.


eibgrad

join:2010-03-15
reply to flyinonice4

»www.tomshardware.com/forum/41136···-adapter



mozerd
Light Will Pierce The Darkness
Premium,MVM
join:2004-04-23
Nepean, ON
reply to jap

said by jap:

Total waste of money. Nevermind the thing won't even fit in his PCI slot.

OOPS that e got me again .... You're quite right about the slot. But I still like the adapter and I 4 one should dump the graphics card etc.

However eibgrad See Profile has a very nice solution that I also like a lot.

flyinonice4

join:2009-06-12
Phoenix, AZ
reply to eibgrad

How would the reception compare between your suggestion and an actual adapter? A refurbished NETGEAR WNCE2001 would do everything I need in my price range, but I just don't want to get it and have diminished reception. The media pc is in a basement that is, for the most part, directly below the router.



eibgrad

join:2010-03-15

Well actually that NETGEAR WNCE2001 is a wireless ethernet bridge (client mode, client bridge, wireless ethernet adapter, they're all the same thing). It's just that that's all it does, whereas devices like the following:

»www.newegg.com/Product/ProductLi···&x=0&y=0

... can be configured in multiple ways, such as a router, AP, repeater, client bridge, etc. IOW, they’re more versatile.

Another alternative is to use a full-sized router that's dd-wrt compatible. You can configure that into a wireless ethernet bridge too, with the advantage you typically get a better, more powerful, adjustable antenna (at least if they're exposed), or even use an aftermarket antenna. And it includes a switch to connect multiple devices. The downside is the larger footprint, and having to do a little more work to flash it and configure it.

So there are a lot of ways to arrive at the same result. You just have to pick what you think best meets your needs.


flyinonice4

join:2009-06-12
Phoenix, AZ

So for something under $30, what would you suggest? Doesn't matter how much room it takes up or time it takes to flash. Whatever will give me the best performance for the price is what I want.



eibgrad

join:2010-03-15
reply to flyinonice4

Ideally I would opt for a good dd-wrt router. But it's a bit more difficult to find a good one at any given time (esp. for $30) since such deals come and go quickly. And at the moment I don't know of a good deal.

In terms of dedicated bridges, I don't have better insight than anyone else when choosing among those I’ve already suggested. I read the reviews like anyone else (btw, just found this one too, »www.rakuten.com/prod/levelone-wb···919.html , cheap @ $19 shipped).

But if I find anything else over the next few days, I’ll drop a note here.



eibgrad

join:2010-03-15
reply to flyinonice4

Interesting, very interesting.

»www.newegg.com/Product/Product.a···3156307&

$25 shipped w/ coupon code EMCXVXN58.

I suspect it will sell out quickly (ends today, 2/13). Not dd-wrt, but does include 4x 100Mbps ports, 2 internal antennas, media optimizations, and highly rated @ Amazon ($55).

»www.amazon.com/TRENDnet-Wireless···4FMI3DA/


flyinonice4

join:2009-06-12
Phoenix, AZ

1 edit

So given my situation this should work perfectly for me correct? I am more concerned of any range issues or speed loss. That and the reviews state it needs reset and reconfigured every couple of days.

EDIT: I had it in my cart and was checking out when it went out of stock. I'll keep an eye on it throughout the day.



eibgrad

join:2010-03-15
reply to flyinonice4

When it comes to wireless, you have to take those reviews w/ a grain of salt, good or bad, and look at them in the aggregate. There will ALWAYS be ppl who have problems w/ wireless no matter how good the device. Wireless is just inherently flakey and subject to so many environmental factors that can’t be predicted. For all I know, those claiming the need to reset failed to use the latest firmware. We don’t even really know their knowledge/experience level. But clearly there’s a LOT more positive than negative reviews, and that matters too. So it’s ALWAYS a crapshoot whether it will work well for YOU. You roll the dice, cross your fingers, and hope for the best.


flyinonice4

join:2009-06-12
Phoenix, AZ

It went back in stock and I grabbed it. I figure if it has that many issues I can return it. I doubt it will, but it is worth trying out. Thanks for all your help elibgrad!


flyinonice4

join:2009-06-12
Phoenix, AZ
reply to flyinonice4

And, officially, I am having trouble with this communicating with my Asus RT-N56U. If I have ipv6 on, it disconnects and reconnects constantly. Any idea how I can work this out? I bought the device in the link Trendnet TEW-640MB. Without ipv6 on it works perfectly fine.



eibgrad

join:2010-03-15
reply to flyinonice4

ipv6 where, on the WAN? LAN? Both? You need to be more specific. If it's only the WAN, I don't see how it would be affected given the local network is NAT'd anyway.


flyinonice4

join:2009-06-12
Phoenix, AZ

1 recommendation

If I setup ipv6 under the specifically marked ipv6 section of my router, I have dropouts with the media bridge. This is all the information that I know to give you. My knowledge is fairly low in this regard



eibgrad

join:2010-03-15

1 recommendation

reply to flyinonice4

If you don't know much about it, then why are using ipv6 at all? ipv6 is only required if your ISP requires it on the WAN side, and few do. From your perspective, ipv6 on the WAN side provides you no benefits. If you're trying to use ipv6 on the LAN side, that's going to be a major headache since so few devices support it.

So unless you can explain to me why you’re using ipv6 (and you may very well have a good reason, but so far it sounds like you don’t, not if you’re telling me you don’t know much about it), then use ipv4!

Just because ipv6 is the new kid on the block doesn’t mean it’s a good idea to switch to it. Esp. given that NAT routers insulate you from it anyway. In fact, I suspect we’ll see ipv4 on the LAN side for a VERY long time to come, regardless if the WAN is using ipv4 or ipv6.


flyinonice4

join:2009-06-12
Phoenix, AZ

Honestly, I use it because it allows for the use of some pretty good free newsgroup servers. It wasn't much of a headache except for the interaction between my media bridge and the router with it on. I have no other issues with computers both connected via ethernet to the router or wirelessly. Otherwise I don't have another use for it.



eibgrad

join:2010-03-15

1 recommendation

reply to flyinonice4

All I can assume is the device is simply not ipv6 compatible. If you look at other TrendNet devices, you'll see that sometimes they have firmware updates that specifically add ipv6 support (unfortunately I didn't notice any for the TEW-640MB). So ipv6 support is coming, if slowly to devices. But I'm sure many will never support it, and given this was a deeply discounted price, that often means it's been obsoleted in favor of some newer model(s).


Tyro

join:2013-03-28
Columbus, IN
reply to jap

Why New Egg over Amazon? Curious!


bangaloredat

join:2013-05-29
reply to flyinonice4

I'm about ready to finish my HTPC. I need to purchase a wireless "N" adapter for the new PC. What would probably be the best brand and model to buy? I purchased a Linksys wireless N router quite a few months ago and am very happy with it. The router is all the way on the back side of the house.I'd say it's a good 100' away.


OmagicQ
Posting in a thread near you

join:2003-10-23
Bakersfield, CA
kudos:1
Reviews:
·Bright House

»www.newegg.com/Product/Product.a···33106136

I use one of these. Works with XP, Windows 7,8 and most linux distributions. Currently I have it installed drivers only instead of the full driver package. The full driver gives you options like intel widi, intel my wifi and more stats than you might want, among other things.
--
...Who, What, When, Where, How... Why? Why Not?