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DPChallenge Forums >> Tips, Tricks, and Q&A >> DSL v. Cable Internet
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05/03/2004 08:01:45 PM · #1
I have Cable (comcast) right now. I can save money with a package thru my phone company, but it is DSL.

1. Have you gone from Cable to DSL and regretted it? vise versa?
2. Have you noticed a difference esp. in speed and reliability?
3. Any comments?
05/03/2004 08:11:07 PM · #2
I have DSL and I love it.

Won't use cable because I have a sattlite dish. Oh, and I think the cable company is run by ----. Nevermind, lets just say we don't get along. ;)
05/03/2004 08:14:04 PM · #3
Originally posted by KarenB:

I have Cable (comcast) right now. I can save money with a package thru my phone company, but it is DSL.

1. Have you gone from Cable to DSL and regretted it? vise versa?
2. Have you noticed a difference esp. in speed and reliability?
3. Any comments?


Karen, stick with cable, it is a lot faster. I have cable and can't imagine going back to something slower.
05/03/2004 08:15:25 PM · #4
I have cable, and a few of my friends have DSL, and it's so much slower.

I love my cable, and hate their DSL.

For insance, I'll be able to download something at like 300kb per second here, but there, it goes like 35 or 40 kb per second.

edit for grammar/

Message edited by author 2004-05-03 20:37:24.
05/03/2004 08:36:29 PM · #5
I don't get it, my experience is the complete opposite. I have verizon dsl, and it smokes my friends cable(comcast, charter). I don't know, maybe its the area?
05/03/2004 08:39:42 PM · #6
the closer you are to a dsl hub, the faster it'll be ... but it's still slower than cable
05/03/2004 08:47:51 PM · #7
hmmm.. I just did a cnet.com speed test. It says that my current cable connection is 2556.6 kbps. What does that mean? :/
How does this compare? The DSL I am looking at is like schurg's - verizon. Does that matter? Are all DSL companies not equal?
05/03/2004 08:57:48 PM · #8
Originally posted by KarenB:

hmmm.. I just did a cnet.com speed test. It says that my current cable connection is 2556.6 kbps. What does that mean? :/
How does this compare? The DSL I am looking at is like schurg's - verizon. Does that matter? Are all DSL companies not equal?


2556.6 = really fast... No DSL connection can touch that. As for DSL companies being equal, they most definitely are not. Service can vary a great deal from place to place, even with the same provider due to the distance from the main office (ie, hub, as hopper pointed out).

Still, unless you do an awful lot of downloading I don't think the speed diff would be a huge concern. For standard surfing both conn are quite fast and reliability is about the same. For me it would come down to the dollars I could save by switching.
05/03/2004 08:58:40 PM · #9
I have found cable, at the best of times, a little faster. At the worst of times (too many subscribers sharing bandwidth), it crawls. DSL appears to hold a consistent speed. Also, as part of our phone system, it is more likely to be functional in the event of a black-out.
05/03/2004 09:06:20 PM · #10
Originally posted by zeuszen:

Also, as part of our phone system, it is more likely to be functional in the event of a black-out.


ROFL .. but.. (LOL) how would you run your computer in a black out? :)

Okay.. I guess you could run off your laptop battery for a bit.. :P

Thanks for the replies. This is helping me to decide.
Comes down to a savings of $36 per month.

Just trying to decide if that is "worth it".

Message edited by author 2004-05-03 21:06:56.
05/03/2004 09:14:37 PM · #11
Originally posted by KarenB:

Originally posted by zeuszen:

Also, as part of our phone system, it is more likely to be functional in the event of a black-out.


ROFL .. but.. (LOL) how would you run your computer in a black out? :)

Okay.. I guess you could run off your laptop battery for a bit.. :P...


You can power a desktop too with a generator.
You may, also, experience partial black-out (sparing your neighbourhood) but enough to bring down the cable company. My theory is, the phone company (as an essential service) is likely to be up first.
05/03/2004 09:15:42 PM · #12
With cable you share bandwidth with all the users in your subnet (your local area), when bandwidth demand is high (ie, during periods of peak use) your connection speed can (and sometimes will) suffer. Despite this limitation cable typically has a higher maximum speed than the "standard" DSL packages that most DSL users have.

With DSL you get a set amount of bandwidth all to yourself, ie, dedicated bandwidth. Your connection speed should be much more consistant than with cable, although with a lower (typically) maximum speed.

Dynamic and static IP addresses are usually available with either service, though static IP's will usually run you a nominal extra charge.

One thing to note is that most cable providers will not allow you to run a server on their network, if they find you doing so they will usually put a prompt stop to it.

So, basically which service to get should depend on whats available in your local market, what features you need, and what price point you're looking at.

Hope this is somewhat helpful, if you have any specific questions you can contact me directly.

Dave
05/03/2004 09:17:52 PM · #13
Originally posted by KarenB:

hmmm.. I just did a cnet.com speed test. It says that my current cable connection is 2556.6 kbps. What does that mean? :/
How does this compare? The DSL I am looking at is like schurg's - verizon. Does that matter? Are all DSL companies not equal?


Typical DSL runs anywhere from 512kbps (kilobits/s) down/128kbps up to 1500kbps down/384kbps up. Cable speed can vary widely depending on the provider and the number of users on your node. Typical "full" cable speeds run from 1500-3000kbps down and 256-500kbps up, but can vary widely based on node usage.
Depending on location, Cable may be faster than DSL, on average, or vice versa. Also, you need to look carefully at other aspects of the service, for instance are you allowed to serve files from your home computer, is there a limit on "excessive" bandwidth - yes, some companies still try this one - and what is the flexibility of the provider regarding equipment inside the modem, i.e. home networking.
In my area, SBC DSL is the best deal going, but 10 miles east TimeWarner's Roadrunner is the same cost but faster. I pay $36.95/mo for 1500kbps down/384kbps up (SBC ADSL), a friend pays about the same for RoadRunner and gets about 3000kbps down & 400kbps up.
If I were budget-minded, I could get 768kbps down/128kbps up for $26.95.
05/03/2004 09:18:10 PM · #14
DSL is often "capped". Not sure if this is true of cable.
05/03/2004 10:49:01 PM · #15
cable is capped and years ago many had "uncapper programs" that would give them BLAZING speeds. But cable companies caught on and put a stop to that (for the most part)

I had DSL and went to Cable and had about the same download speeds on each, but the big difference was in the upload speeds, cable was 2 to 3 times faster than DSL. At the time I was uploading a lot of photos for my car club and it really made a difference

James
05/03/2004 11:13:38 PM · #16
DSL is fine but much slower then cable (which I have). There must be sites that tell how much faster cable is.

May cable just tested at 3838.2 kbps

Message edited by author 2004-05-03 23:17:04.
05/03/2004 11:20:38 PM · #17
Originally posted by KarenB:

I have Cable (comcast) right now. I can save money with a package thru my phone company, but it is DSL.

1. Have you gone from Cable to DSL and regretted it? vise versa?
2. Have you noticed a difference esp. in speed and reliability?
3. Any comments?


Cable is faster !!!!!!!!!!
If you need to save money drop the phone company and use this www.vonage.com phone ower the network you don't need a phone line.

Se you may 22

Message edited by author 2004-05-03 23:24:02.
05/03/2004 11:28:23 PM · #18
Cable isn't always faster... I get 6Mb (ie, 6,000Kbps) DSL for $69.99, or 1.5Mb/384Kb for $29.99

05/04/2004 12:48:36 AM · #19
there both the same unless your a 1: hardcore gamer or 2: download a ton or 3: do web design type work.
05/04/2004 01:12:41 AM · #20
Cable is generally much faster then DSL and much cheaper. GENERALLY. :) However there are drawbacks to cable as well. If the traffic in your particular neighborhood is very high, then your service will slow down, when DSL will not. It's also possible for neighbors to in intercept your cable transmissions where with DSL it isn't. On the other side, with DSL you have to be within a certain range from a transmission tower (or station) in order to get the full speed from DSL and DSL is usually more expensive.

I'd recommend you research both the DSL and Cable carrier in your area first, before making a decision, and then with all things equal, go with the more reliable service. There is nothing worse in the World, besides cold pizza, then an unreliable ISP. :) So to research your prospective IPS, go here: www.dslreports.com. look at the forums of the ISP you are considering, ask questions, read the posts, and THEN decide.
05/04/2004 01:38:32 AM · #21
I switched to Cable about three months ago and can't ever imagine going back to dsl, wayyyyyyyyy to slow! Last night I downloaded a program at 388kbps! The best I ever got with dsl was 157kbps, however, in all fairness, I was right on the very edge of not being able to get dsl. Still, I love my cable and would recommend it to anyone. Especially if you're a gamer, love my 30 ping rate!!!!! Just my opinion!
05/04/2004 10:20:20 AM · #22
I had cable, which I found to be frequently much slower than the DSL I currently have. I know that cable is capable of faster speeds, but the cable company here charges a hefty premium for anything faster than 256Kb/s . So, with the slower service and the bandwidth slowdown at peak usage times, it got to be almost as bad as dial-up. Switching to DSL also saved me about $10/month. The DSL provider also offers better spam protection and other services that I enjoy as well.

The cable also seemed much less reliable, and I had to call for service more often. I dunno if that was due to their software, or their network, but the DSL provider really has their fecal matter in a linear arrangement.

That said, the cable provider that my dad uses in Kansas City does not limit bandwidth and his service SCREAMS.

Message edited by author 2004-05-04 10:22:30.
05/04/2004 11:55:19 AM · #23
karen,

I have had both cable and DSL. I found that cable was overall faster, altho the DSL was quite acceptable. One thing that I experienced with my DSL was that the latency was longer. In other words, when you click a web page, it takes a little bit longer for the system to respond. Once it responded, it was fast, but there was always this little lag.
Made it hard to do stuff like real-time voice. But I don't know if all DSL does that or just mine.

05/04/2004 11:59:50 AM · #24
Over here (Holland) our cable provider has a different system so that your speed is not dependable on the amount of users. It used to be that "many users = slow" way, but they advertised about their new system and that is why I went to them.

My speed is always high and consistant (1536/360 kbps account), can't measure trough CNet, but another test in Holland just said: 1541/318kbps :) Their maximum account is 4096/768.

We are allowed to runs servers and routers for a year now.

We didn't choose for DSL, because:
a) It wasn't available two years ago
b) It would cost us one ISDN line (no way!)
c) Mixed experiences from friends


05/04/2004 01:03:14 PM · #25
ok, yes cable has the POTENTIAL to be faster. that is why they tell
you "up to" 3mb down and "up to" 384k up. The problem with
cable is that it bottle necks when too many people are using it.

DSL does cap out a little sooner usually about 1.5mb down and 384k up.
BUT, make note, DSL=Digital Subscriber Line which means if you are
running slower than what your are supposed be running then you
probably need to up date your computer.

I have had cable, and when it was fast is was amazing, but then
about the same time everyday usually between 3pm and midnight, it would have been faster to use dial up, because everyone was online.
also keep in mind that networks are forever being improved, which helps
with this problem,
Bottom line is weigh the pros and the cons and go with what is right for you!
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