Recommend me a new Router

pcper.com did a very extensive review of the RT-N66U. The main reason I'm mentioning it is that they linked to an ASUS site with a dummy version of the firmware. So, for anyone interested in a new router, it's worth having a look at how the firmware GUI looks and works.

Arise thread!!

So I have finally convinced my wife to dump Bell Sympatico and move over to TekSavvy. Of course, this means returning the 2Wire modem/route that they gave us and buying one of my own.

Any recommendations?

If possible, I would like to have a modem/router, so that I also do not need to set up a separate router at home. It should be wireless, but with a spot for a wired connection (for my 360)

Any suggestions?

Teksavvy offers the following for sale:
Speedtouch 516
ZyXel VSG 1432 VDSL2 Gateway (Modem/4 ports/Wireless)

How are they?

Edit to add:

Typical things he house has connected wirelessly are the following:
2 iPhones
3-4 Laptops
1 Xbox (intermittently)

I have a 360 connected via a wired connection.

Streaming video (through Netflix as well as other services) is a major use, as is some torrenting.

mudbunny - I took a peek at TekSavvy, and looks like they offer both DSL and Cable options, and it sounds like you'll be needing a new modem when you switch.

Based on the two options you mentioned, it looks like you're strongly considering the DSL product. I'm not a real big fan of DSL, and the market for modems is really thin, but I was able to find a couple modems that have built-in wifi. Check out the D-link DSL-2740B and the ASUS DSL-N10.

If you go Cable, it looks like Motorola offers a SURFboard with built-in wifi, which would tickle your desire to have a single device. Look for the Motorola SB6580.

I'm not sure how it is north of the border, but here in the States I find myself usually getting a better deal buying hardware direct for myself, versus getting it from my vendor. Sounds like you've got a couple of options, and as long as the hardware you pickup supports the DSL protocols used by your vendor, there shouldn't be an issue. i'd still run things by a customer service rep before pulling the trigger though.

Unfortunately, it's been about 6 or 7 years since I dumped DSL and went Cable, and I don't have any first-hand experience with either of the DSL modems up there. I do have an ASUS router (the highly touted RT-N66U just about everyone has in this thread), and love everything about it.

mudbunny wrote:

Arise thread!!

So I have finally convinced my wife to dump Bell Sympatico and move over to TekSavvy. Of course, this means returning the 2Wire modem/route that they gave us and buying one of my own.

Any recommendations?

If possible, I would like to have a modem/router, so that I also do not need to set up a separate router at home. It should be wireless, but with a spot for a wired connection (for my 360)

Any suggestions?

Teksavvy offers the following for sale:
Speedtouch 516
ZyXel VSG 1432 VDSL2 Gateway (Modem/4 ports/Wireless)

How are they?

Edit to add:

Typical things he house has connected wirelessly are the following:
2 iPhones
3-4 Laptops
1 Xbox (intermittently)

I have a 360 connected via a wired connection.

Streaming video (through Netflix as well as other services) is a major use, as is some torrenting.

My biggest suggestion here is separate modem and router. I know it may be a bit more expensive but the selection and features of combo devices isn't that great. Also I have known two people with combo modem/routers (both provided by the ISP) who had to replace them when the WiFi burned out in them. I say get your modem from your ISP since they are usually free for new users willing to sign a contract and then buy a nice router. So long as you get the ethernet version of the modem (instead of the USB one) it should work with any router you want to get and this way you can keep the same router if you decide to switch from DSL to cable at a later date.

Is there ever a reason to shop for modems instead of taking the ISP's? We're a few years into our service so the modem's old and stuff, but now that I have the router setup worked out (two servicing the household) we're solid there. I just wonder, though, if we could get more speed out of a new modem.

muraii wrote:

Is there ever a reason to shop for modems instead of taking the ISP's? We're a few years into our service so the modem's old and stuff, but now that I have the router setup worked out (two servicing the household) we're solid there. I just wonder, though, if we could get more speed out of a new modem.

Cost. $5 a month to rent a router from the ISP adds up quickly.

muraii wrote:

Is there ever a reason to shop for modems instead of taking the ISP's? We're a few years into our service so the modem's old and stuff, but now that I have the router setup worked out (two servicing the household) we're solid there. I just wonder, though, if we could get more speed out of a new modem.

Depends. I think my ISP supported docsis 3.0 but didn't offer docsis 3.0 modems for a while.

Now that I think bout it, I realize that I will be going the cable side. I will be getting my phone line through them so in order to avoid the charge for a dry loop, I will be going with cable. As for renting vs owning, TekSavvy does not, as far as I can tell, rent modems. You buy it yourself.

So, assuming that I grab both a modem, my wireless router needs to be fairly strong to make sure that the signal gets all the way diagonally across the house. A problem that exists with my current 2Wire modem.

FWIW, TekSavvy only offers the Thomson DCM 425 for a modem for sale. I *can* grab my own modem though.

They do have a list of approved modems:

Scientific Atlanta - DPX 2100
Scientific Atlanta - DPC 2100
Scientific Atlanta - DPX 2100 V2
Motorola - SB5100
Motorola - SB5101
Motorola - SB5101N
Motorola - SB5101U
Motorola - SB5120
Technicolor/Thomson - DCM-425

mudbunny wrote:

Now that I think bout it, I realize that I will be going the cable side. I will be getting my phone line through them so in order to avoid the charge for a dry loop, I will be going with cable. As for renting vs owning, TekSavvy does not, as far as I can tell, rent modems. You buy it yourself.

So, assuming that I grab both a modem, my wireless router needs to be fairly strong to make sure that the signal gets all the way diagonally across the house. A problem that exists with my current 2Wire modem.

FWIW, TekSavvy only offers the Thomson DCM 425 for a modem for sale. I *can* grab my own modem though.

They do have a list of approved modems:

Scientific Atlanta - DPX 2100
Scientific Atlanta - DPC 2100
Scientific Atlanta - DPX 2100 V2
Motorola - SB5100
Motorola - SB5101
Motorola - SB5101N
Motorola - SB5101U
Motorola - SB5120
Technicolor/Thomson - DCM-425

At least for the Motorola's, those are older DOCSIS 2.0 modems instead of DOCSIS 3.0. I'd ask to see if they've support DOCSIS 3.0, even if you aren't going to subscribe to one of the DOCSIS 3.0 plans. That way you're a bit more future proofed.

MannishBoy wrote:
mudbunny wrote:

Now that I think bout it, I realize that I will be going the cable side. I will be getting my phone line through them so in order to avoid the charge for a dry loop, I will be going with cable. As for renting vs owning, TekSavvy does not, as far as I can tell, rent modems. You buy it yourself.

So, assuming that I grab both a modem, my wireless router needs to be fairly strong to make sure that the signal gets all the way diagonally across the house. A problem that exists with my current 2Wire modem.

FWIW, TekSavvy only offers the Thomson DCM 425 for a modem for sale. I *can* grab my own modem though.

They do have a list of approved modems:

Scientific Atlanta - DPX 2100
Scientific Atlanta - DPC 2100
Scientific Atlanta - DPX 2100 V2
Motorola - SB5100
Motorola - SB5101
Motorola - SB5101N
Motorola - SB5101U
Motorola - SB5120
Technicolor/Thomson - DCM-425

At least for the Motorola's, those are older DOCSIS 2.0 modems instead of DOCSIS 3.0. I'd ask to see if they've support DOCSIS 3.0, even if you aren't going to subscribe to one of the DOCSIS 3.0 plans. That way you're a bit more future proofed.

DOCSIS 3.0??

Heads off to teh Google.

Edit - Grabbed this page here
http://www.cablelabs.com/cablemodem/...

Thanks!

When I bought a cable modem awhile back, I just went with a used Motorola SURFboard even though it was just DOCSIS 2.0. The level of cable internet service I get doesn't utilize DOCSIS 3.0. Those things are dirt cheap, too. I think I paid maybe 30 bucks for it. So, if they don't utilize DOCSIS 3.0, you might just go for a cheapo one if it saves you a lot. It looks like cheap DOCSIS 3.0 ones start at around $80 USD.

As to the router, you could always join GWJ's The Dark Knight club. What price range were you thinking for a router? I'm guessing you would probably have to spend at least $100 USD to get a decent dual band wireless N router.

I think to get DOCSIS 3.0, I think I need to go up to a higher level of service. I really don't need the speed. My problem is bandwidth. DOCSIS 2 gets me up to 27Mb per second, which is plenty enough for me. I am also not sure if grabbing one that is not on their approved modem list will result in it just being not supported, or if it is not permitted. (Caveat, I know *nothing*)

As for a modem, see my caveat above. Any router I buy will have to have some power in it so that my wife can see the signal on her iPhone 4 across the house. She currently has problems with our 2Wire signal. Weirdly, me on my 4S am farther away and I have *no* problem at all.

I asked what DOCSIS 3 mdems are compatible with TekSavvy. Here is what i got: SMC D3GN-RES DCM476 Huawei MT130U Motorola SB6120 Motorola SB6121

I think that divides up into the following:

SMC D3GN-RES
DCM476
Huawei MT130U
Motorola SB6120
Motorola SB6121

According to this review, the RT-N66U has a range of about 300 feet. It's one of the top performing routers at the moment. You probably don't need to get a router with the 02.11AC support. That's the "successor" to N but there really aren't any devices that utilize it yet. It'll probably be a few years before it becomes fairly standard.

You could save some money and not get a router that supports dual band. There aren't too many devices that utilize the 5 GHz bandwidth. I think my desktop is the only thing in my house that uses it because I specifically went and bought a dual band adapter for it.

You should be able to get one of those Motorola SURFboard modems for dirt cheap. They are on the list. The Motorola SB5100 is about 20 bucks used.

Edit: I don't have any experience with DOCSIS 3.0, so you'll have to get other people's input on that one.

mudbunny wrote:

As for a modem, see my caveat above. Any router I buy will have to have some power in it so that my wife can see the signal on her iPhone 4 across the house. She currently has problems with our 2Wire signal. Weirdly, me on my 4S am farther away and I have *no* problem at all.

I would suggested getting something that is very compatible with dd-wrt then because it will let you adjust the signal strength. Also a simultaneous dual-band router or just a G router will give you a better signal. Also some devices just have bad antennas. I used to get better reception with my iBook in the driveway than my sister got with her Dell even when the Dell was 20 feet and a couple of walls closer to the base station.

Another thing you might look into is if you can use your old router in bridge mode or if you can pick up a second router (perhaps a used WRT54g) for cheap to use as a bridge.

Yet another option might be a Powerline Networking to Wifi bridge. You plug one device into a power outlet and connect it to your router via ethernet and then plug another thing into another outlet elsewhere in the house and it supplys a Wifi signal in that location.

mudbunny wrote:

Motorola SB6120

I use this one with my Teksavvy connection and it works great, Mudbunny. I think PA recommended it at the time.

muraii wrote:

Is there ever a reason to shop for modems instead of taking the ISP's? We're a few years into our service so the modem's old and stuff, but now that I have the router setup worked out (two servicing the household) we're solid there. I just wonder, though, if we could get more speed out of a new modem.

YES!

I've been with Comcast for the last 6 years, and for the first 5 years had the same (ISP-provided) modem. While they had steadily been increasing my service capacity, I still had the old hardware (and was being charged $8/mo!). I turned that in about a year ago, and switched over to a new modem that brought me up to speed with their technology improvements, and saw my downstream speed triple, and my upstream speed double.

At worst, I'd do some research on your current modem, and check with your ISP about what they support. If they support something fancier that what your hardware has, I'd think about upgrading. I happened to get a double-whammy out of mine, in that Comcast was also charging me for the old hardware too, so I've already paid off that "investment".

*sigh*

So I'm having this problem and am sort of at a loss as to how I should test it. I noticed last weekend that my internet connection was sh*tty-- any device, hard-wired or wireless, was getting a really slow and spotty internet connection. I power-cycled the router & the modem a number of times and had no luck, so I called and spoke with Comcast, who had me do the same thing, and then everything was fine, somehow. Why power-cycling while on the phone with the ISP worked where it hadn't before is beyond me. Cut to today, a week later, where I'm having the same issues-- PS3 (hard-lined), laptop (wireless 2.4GHz), desktop (wireless 5GHz), are all having trouble loading basic websites (even GWJ takes forever to load). So I contact Comcast again, power-cycle everything and its mother, and still have a crappy connection. Until I plug the laptop directly into the modem (Motorola Surfboard, SB5120)-- then Speedtest.net loads and the internet works like a charm. Plug the router back into the modem and reboot the network, and boom! Back to a crappy connection.

So I try file transfers over the network, and those are fine. And according to Comcast and Speedtest.net, the modem is fine and getting a clean signal on their end. So now I'm wondering-- how do I test the router's connection to the modem? I can't find any options or advice online on how to do so. It's the Asus RT-N66U with (updated) default firmware, btw.

Try replacing the cable you're using as the WAN link between the router and modem. Other than that you're looking at setting up a controlled environment with a system on the WAN connection of the router so that you can benchmark the throughput.

Thanks for the tips, Mantis. I've tried using a different cable and had the same issue, so I got the idea in my head to reset the router to default and start from scratch. Now it either can't find the router at all when trying to setup up an internet connection type, or it gets past the router recognition phase but times out when trying to move on to the final step (set wireless network names/passwords).

So how might I go about doing like you said and benchmarking the throughput on the WAN? Is there some software I can download and run a cat5 straight into the WAN port to test the port?

I feel like I'm beating a dead horse but I REALLY don't want to send this thing in and wait, even if it is under warranty...

So I hooked up my old router, which works but feels like going from a Porsche 911 to a '96 Honda Civic. But I guess a reliable Civic is better than a broken-down 911, isn't it...

Wasn't able to figure out how to test the WAN ethernet port as LiquidMantis suggested, so I just sent in a ticket to Asus. Hopefully the issue is resolved quickly, as I don't know how long I can stand knowing that I can only utilize less than half of my internet speeds...

Sorry, I meant to reply back but was on my iPad and it was too complicated to post from that. You'd have to hard set an IP to both the router's WAN interface and a different computer, something like 10.0.0.1 on the router and 10.0.0.2 on the "WAN machine", both with a subnet mask of 255.255.255.0 and 10.0.0.1 as the default gateway on the machine. Router's gateway doesn't matter, nor does DNS. It's been a while since I've had to deal with them, but you might need a crossover cable for that to work.

Once you have that connected you'd need to set up something like the LST Server for LAN Speed Test on that machine. You would then run the LAN Speed Test client on a different computer on the LAN network of the router. Home routers typically allow all outbound traffic so you shouldn't have to configure any firewall policies to run the test.

Hell damn ass balls. Had a daylong security seminar at work that inspired me to try to install Tomato on my WRTU54G-TM, only to find out I can't flash it, and DD-WRT/Tomato aren't supported on it.

Yup. I had the same issue with my old WRT54G-- it is one of the few versions that is absolutely un-moddable for Tomato or DD-WRT. Luckily, I didn't try to flash it and brick it, since I had to send my Asus RT-N66U in for a bad WAN ethernet port. At least I still have internet in the meantime...

So I got my Dark Knight back yesterday, just hooked it up and BAM! Same problem. The RMA tag's status said "(New) Repair" and I noticed the router had all my recent settings still saved on it, so I'm not sure what they actually did to it. Either way, I got it all hooked up and once again, nothin' doin'. So I reset it to factory defaults, and lo and behold! Internet access! Go to turn QoS back on and then the internet craps out-- same issue, unable to resolve a DNS, or server time outs, so on and so forth. Turn off QoS, and internet is back!

So now I'm at a bit of a loss as to what's going on. I'd been running fine for months with QoS on, up until a couple weeks ago. I guess I'll leave it off for now and see how watching netflix in one room while listening to Google Music in another pans out, but I recall having issues with internet speeds in the office when the wife watched Hulu or Netflix in the living room when we first got this modem, and turning on QoS cleaned that up.

QoS involves some processor usage, so if you've got a heat problem in the unit, it might work okay for normal routing, and then go nuts when you try turning QoS on.

If the unit is one you can open, try opening it and blowing a fan inside. If that won't work, see if you can rig up some way to get quite a bit more airflow through the case, and see if anything changes. Simply setting it on top of a box fan could work, for instance. Then try QoS again, and see if anything changes.

Also, check to be sure you're on the most recent firmware.

I have the free ActionTec MI424-WR Rev D router still, for FIOS. It's fast, but I keep adding devices. Should I buy an F or I revision myself and swap it in? FIOS doesn't usually worry about it when you put your own equipment or FW in place, will they be upset if I drop in a new router?

Thanks for any info.

If that one is working good you might just snag an unmanaged switch to connect to it to save you a bit of money.

I'm hearing though that the later revs are "faster"... Not sure whether that means lower latency or more throughput. Any thoughts?

Does FIOS come into the house as Ethernet? If so, you can use any router you want.