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Is 3 mbps enough for me?

DoctorArchDoctorArch CurmudgeonRegistered User regular
edited March 2011 in Help / Advice Forum
Well, it's time to consider my options again regarding internet because Comcast likes to mug me, force me to open my wallet, smack me around, and tells me to like it.

My situation: Currently I use Comcast's 12 mbps connection connected to a wireless router. 3 computers in the house, of which at least two are connected to the internet at any given time. I certainly can call myself a "heavy internet user." Additionally, two cellphones also utilize wireless internet whilst in the house. I also regularly use an Xbox 360 to play games and stream Netflix (and I do usually get HD video, although, with my internet being Cable, it can bob up and down irregularly).

If I change to the only other available option in my area, DSL 3 mbps, will that be enough for my needs?

Thanks everybody.

DoctorArch on
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Posts

  • EggyToastEggyToast Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    It depends on how much you're using at any given time. 3mpbs will be enough to do, probably, two streaming things at the same time. You could probably play Xbox and have someone stream Netflix without noticing any difference.

    If you're doing torrents, or uploading video to youtube, or have two heavy computer users online at the same time, you can start to bump heads. But 2-3 is usually enough for one person to use the internet quite heavily.

    Comcast does offer tiers in a lot of areas now, though -- perhaps talk to them about their other options and, if available, try it out for a month at the slower speed.

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  • DarkewolfeDarkewolfe Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    Be aware that the advertised speed is not what you actually get. It's always "up to" that amount. There is almost no way to accurately gauge what connection you'll really get, but it's always utter shit compared to what they're advertising.

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  • MushroomStickMushroomStick Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    I would not think that you could stream hd video with a 3mbps connection, in case that matters to you.

  • schussschuss Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    Usually they have free trials, so try it for a week.

  • starmanbrandstarmanbrand Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    I have a 3mbps connection from ATT and I have two PCs, my TV, my Xbox, and a netbook that use it.

    Anything using a lot of bandwith at one time significantly affects other connected items. I will use Wow as an example since it has a ping that I check whenever I notice something.
    Spoiler:

    Basically, if people are going to be heavy stuff all at the same time? its going to be inconvenient. I can deal with sub 900 ping so my girlfriend and I have an agreement that any major downloads will be done at night unless its something we both have interest in and want right away. Streaming isn't as big of a problem as downloading, but the two combined will really slowdown games/additional streaming.

    This said? I don't know if I've ever heard anyone say anything good about comcast while Charter(ISP before I moved to SD) and ATT have always treated me so good.

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  • admanbadmanb the bored genie Seattle, WARegistered User regular
    edited March 2011
    And do note (if this is stating the obvious I apologize) that while sub-900 ping is do-able for WoW, anything over 100 will be fucking miserable for most of what you'd play online with an XBox.

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  • KirbithKirbith Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    I have a 3mbps connection from ATT and I have two PCs, my TV, my Xbox, and a netbook that use it.

    Anything using a lot of bandwith at one time significantly affects other connected items. I will use Wow as an example since it has a ping that I check whenever I notice something.
    Spoiler:

    Basically, if people are going to be heavy stuff all at the same time? its going to be inconvenient. I can deal with sub 900 ping so my girlfriend and I have an agreement that any major downloads will be done at night unless its something we both have interest in and want right away. Streaming isn't as big of a problem as downloading, but the two combined will really slowdown games/additional streaming.

    This said? I don't know if I've ever heard anyone say anything good about comcast while Charter(ISP before I moved to SD) and ATT have always treated me so good.

    This is a great example. While I'm not necessarily recommending you stay with Comcast, maybe look into to see if there are any speeds better than 3 mbps available with the other option? I really think is just going to be way too slow for everything you'd like to do.

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  • XaquinXaquin Right behind you!Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    I tried downgrading to 3mbs for about 2 days.

    even viewing PA was a strain

    The speeds aren't even close to what's advertised.

    I have 12mbs right now and average between 700kbs and 1mb DL

    which fortunately is fine for me

  • starmanbrandstarmanbrand Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    admanb wrote: »
    And do note (if this is stating the obvious I apologize) that while sub-900 ping is do-able for WoW, anything over 100 will be fucking miserable for most of what you'd play online with an XBox.

    Does xbox live handle ping differently than a computer? I know with TF2 I could play without much problem up to 600 ping. Granted I'm no ranked player or anything, but it wasn't too really bad at all.

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  • FeralFeral Who needs a medical license when you've got style? Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    You absolutely can do HD streaming at 3Gbps. Netflix HD streaming uses up about 1.7 - 1.9 GB (that's Bytes, not bits) per hour.

    3G is fine. The real problem with cable is, as other people have mentioned, they don't give you what you pay for. That's the main reason I still have DSL at my house, even though I think that in the absence of corporate bullshit cable is potentially the superior technology - AT&T actually guarantees me the 6Mbps I pay for, and if I don't get it I can bitch at them. (I haven't had to bitch at them in a long time.)

    every person who doesn't like an acquired taste always seems to think everyone who likes it is faking it. it should be an official fallacy.
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  • DoctorArchDoctorArch Curmudgeon Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    Unfortunately the maximum DSL speed to my location is 3 mbps, so no room to upgrade.

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  • admanbadmanb the bored genie Seattle, WARegistered User regular
    edited March 2011
    Feral wrote: »
    You absolutely can do HD streaming at 3Gbps. Netflix HD streaming uses up about 1.7 - 1.9 GB (that's Bytes, not bits) per hour.

    3G is fine. The real problem with cable is, as other people have mentioned, they don't give you what you pay for. That's the main reason I still have DSL at my house, even though I think that in the absence of corporate bullshit cable is potentially the superior technology - AT&T actually guarantees me the 6Mbps I pay for, and if I don't get it I can bitch at them. (I haven't had to bitch at them in a long time.)

    He said 3mbps, which is only 1.35 GB per hour.

    3gbps would be absurd. Verizon FIOS is only 50mbps.

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  • FeralFeral Who needs a medical license when you've got style? Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    admanb wrote: »
    Feral wrote: »
    You absolutely can do HD streaming at 3Gbps. Netflix HD streaming uses up about 1.7 - 1.9 GB (that's Bytes, not bits) per hour.

    3G is fine. The real problem with cable is, as other people have mentioned, they don't give you what you pay for. That's the main reason I still have DSL at my house, even though I think that in the absence of corporate bullshit cable is potentially the superior technology - AT&T actually guarantees me the 6Mbps I pay for, and if I don't get it I can bitch at them. (I haven't had to bitch at them in a long time.)

    He said 3mbps, which is only 1.35 GB per hour.

    3gbps would be absurd. Verizon FIOS is only 50mbps.

    Reading fail. That's what I get for multitasking, sorry.

    Thanks for putting me in my place.

    every person who doesn't like an acquired taste always seems to think everyone who likes it is faking it. it should be an official fallacy.
    the "no true scotch, man" fallacy.
  • schussschuss Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    admanb wrote: »
    And do note (if this is stating the obvious I apologize) that while sub-900 ping is do-able for WoW, anything over 100 will be fucking miserable for most of what you'd play online with an XBox.

    Does xbox live handle ping differently than a computer? I know with TF2 I could play without much problem up to 600 ping. Granted I'm no ranked player or anything, but it wasn't too really bad at all.

    That's because TF2 has masses of ping compensation netcode. At one point it was actually easier to be a sniper at high ping.

  • L|amaL|ama Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    Yeah tf2 (and source engine games in general) is (are) a special case, most online FPSes you will be strongly disadvantaged on 100+ ping.

  • DehumanizedDehumanized Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    3mbps ~= .375MBps ~= 375KB/s

    That will be a painful transition.

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  • DoctorArchDoctorArch Curmudgeon Registered User regular
    edited March 2011
    Thanks all for your help, I'll ask Ceres to lock. It looks like my best bet is to call Comcast, threaten to leave, and negotiate a lesser price.

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This discussion has been closed.