Considering a USB network adaptor, bad idea?

coolred

Diamond Member
Nov 12, 2001
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I am in the process of picking parts for a networked multi tuner PVR/HTPC. For size reasons, I am considering getting a mATX motherboard, thus limiting my PCI slots to 3. As i said the system will be multi tuner, meaning at least 2 and a mamimum of 3-4. I may be able to go with 2 tuners and a wireless PCI card, at least i hope I can, but if not are 802.11g wireless adaptors adequate for video streaming as long as the signal is okay? Or do they suck? I woudl think as long as its USB2.0 it should ahve plenty of bandwidth right?
 

Goosemaster

Lifer
Apr 10, 2001
48,777
3
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I have used both a PCMCIA and a USB adaptor for sometime now if that helps>


USB introduces driver conflicts sometimes, but for the most part both options are fine from reputable vendors as long as their drivers are fine. I am using a damn uniden USB adaptor and it has been fine.
 

Cheetah8799

Diamond Member
Apr 12, 2001
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My new firewall uses a USB network card as the red (internet/wan) port. It works pretty. Max download is 3mbps, so I was a little worried about bandwidth, but it worked out ok.

I'm using a DLink 650+ I think, it's an older 10mbps model.

I'm not sure of the exact specs for USB2.0, but I don't think it stacks up to the 100mbps of a good pci network card. Plus USB uses your CPU quite a bit when you do large transfers through it. So if you think the tuners will max your cpu, then you don't want the damn usb nic to take anything away.


Curious, but why don't you buy a mATX mobo that has onboard network port?
 

coolred

Diamond Member
Nov 12, 2001
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Curious, but why don't you buy a mATX mobo that has onboard network port?

I probablly will get a board with a LAN port, but as of yet I am not sure how close these will be and I am moving into an apartment, so It won't be easy to hide wires, so I figured wireless would work. Also I want to learn networking, so i figured might as well have the option of both wired and wireless. But yeah if the computers are somewhat close together, then i will use the onboard LAN
 

timswim78

Diamond Member
Jan 1, 2003
4,330
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I would reccomend not going with wireless unless you have one computer that is connected to the router via an ethernet cable. I have found it very difficult (impossible) to connect to my router's setup utility from a wireless system. However, this could be due to the cheapness of my router.
 

loup garou

Lifer
Feb 17, 2000
35,132
1
81
Originally posted by: coolred
Curious, but why don't you buy a mATX mobo that has onboard network port?

I probablly will get a board with a LAN port, but as of yet I am not sure how close these will be and I am moving into an apartment, so It won't be easy to hide wires, so I figured wireless would work. Also I want to learn networking, so i figured might as well have the option of both wired and wireless. But yeah if the computers are somewhat close together, then i will use the onboard LAN
Get a board with onboard LAN and a Buffalo 54g Ethernet converter. Best of both worlds.
 

bmacd

Lifer
Jan 15, 2001
10,869
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i used to use a belkin USB adapter for the longest time until i got a NIC card. It worked perfect and i have no complaints (other than using up a USB port).

-=bmacd=-
 

nageov3t

Lifer
Feb 18, 2004
42,816
83
91
I use a Belkin USB wireless nic. the thing is a total PIA. I couldn't even count the time that I've had to uninstall and reinstall the drivers.

what kinda sucks for me is that my PC is far away from the wireless router. having the USB nic allows me to run 30-40' of usb cable through my drop ceiling in the basement to get the nic into a place where the reception is good.
 

loup garou

Lifer
Feb 17, 2000
35,132
1
81
Originally posted by: loki8481
I use a Belkin USB wireless nic. the thing is a total PIA. I couldn't even count the time that I've had to uninstall and reinstall the drivers.

what kinda sucks for me is that my PC is far away from the wireless router. having the USB nic allows me to run 30-40' of usb cable through my drop ceiling in the basement to get the nic into a place where the reception is good.
The most likely reason you have to reinstall the drivers is because you're running thirty to forty FEET of USB cable! USB is rated at a max of somewhere around 16 feet!

Once again, you'd benefit from a ethernet converter as well. It plugs into the system's network card and requires no drivers. You can run 30-40 feet of Cat5 to the ethernet converter.

Of course, if you're running 30-40 feet of cable, I don't know why you don't go the distance and hardwire the system, but I'm sure you have some reason not obvious to us.
 

pilgrim2u

Senior member
Nov 20, 2002
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I use a siemens speedstream USB and a MS USB adapter. To me the antenna made a huge difference in signal quality
 

nageov3t

Lifer
Feb 18, 2004
42,816
83
91
Originally posted by: werk
Originally posted by: loki8481
I use a Belkin USB wireless nic. the thing is a total PIA. I couldn't even count the time that I've had to uninstall and reinstall the drivers.

what kinda sucks for me is that my PC is far away from the wireless router. having the USB nic allows me to run 30-40' of usb cable through my drop ceiling in the basement to get the nic into a place where the reception is good.
The most likely reason you have to reinstall the drivers is because you're running thirty to forty FEET of USB cable! USB is rated at a max of somewhere around 16 feet!

Once again, you'd benefit from a ethernet converter as well. It plugs into the system's network card and requires no drivers. You can run 30-40 feet of Cat5 to the ethernet converter.

Of course, if you're running 30-40 feet of cable, I don't know why you don't go the distance and hardwire the system, but I'm sure you have some reason not obvious to us.

same thing happened when I was using significantly less cable.

thanks for the ethernet converter idea, though.