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View Full Version : Computer question-56k modem?



wierdscience
10-17-2003, 11:44 PM
I have an opertunity to get for free a Dell dimen.L866r complete with software(Windblows Me) and printer.

The machine is the same as the one I have now except it has a 19" Trinitron monitor and mines a 17",okay heres the question,the fellow who has it says all thats wrong with it is a bad modem,if this is the case which modem is the best?I have heard that Lucent is the most bang for the buck,is this the case?

SJorgensen
10-18-2003, 12:45 AM
Weird,
The technology that enabled modems to achieve the 56K speed whether Flex or X2 or V92 that combined them both, has been around quite a while and so there are tons of generic modems that do a fine job. Modems are not the premium connection they used to be and now most motherboards include a built-in modem that does a fine job. Therefore the modems cards are cheap and easily replaced. I wouldn't sweat it too much. Shopping for a "high performance" modem won't get you above the now slow 56K speed. The only choices for performance are DSL (256K) and Broadband over cable (1800K now but as high as 10,000K) That still seems slow now that business infrastructure is at 100,000K and Gigabit speed is available and there is a glut of fiber optic lines for the backbone. They just want to spoon feed us for marketing reasons. I hope good competitive options show up soon (the communications industry is like the oil industry.)
Spence

Paul Alciatore
10-18-2003, 03:00 PM
What SJ said is about it. Modems reached a telephone line imposed limit at the 56K versions some years ago and even those do not often actually operate at that speed due to line conditions. I've seen mine drop to 36K or 28K or even less at times. All the improvements in the 56K modems since then have been in the area of price reduction. Almost any inexpensive modem will give very good performance.

To get better performance you must use a different type of connection - cable modem or special high speed connections which will have their own equipment specified or supplied by the provider.

Paul A.

Evan
10-18-2003, 03:04 PM
That's it in a nutshell.

SGW
10-18-2003, 04:35 PM
Yeah, I think these days most everyone uses the same integrated circuit chip. It doesn't matter much.

OutlawSmithy
10-18-2003, 05:06 PM
I'd say to jump on that Dell, dump WinBlows Me, and get another modem, cable, preferably. I know in all of the modems that I've had over the years, even the brand names, outside of US Robotics, and even some of these were Lucent. Today, with cable internet, DSL & satelite, most places can't sell modems cheap enough. (just my .02 cents)

Oh, one other thing, with a 56k modem, you'll never reach the speed of 56k, even tho, it may show 56k. The best you'll attain is 53k. You can thank the FCC for that.

wierdscience
10-18-2003, 09:37 PM
Okay,so it don't really matter what brand,I wasn't worried about cost or connection speed,just the number of 12 packs that might be required to install a new one twice,I could do it myself if I had too,but working inside of a computer is something I wish to remain in the dark on for the time being,too many buddies http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//biggrin.gif

Evan
10-18-2003, 09:57 PM
The reason you can't get 56K on a phone line is signal strength limits. The modems can do it but the signal would be strong enough to cause crosstalk on bundled twisted pairs of analog lines. Therefore, the signal strength is limited and so is the speed. When you connect on a dialup the modems "train" until they achieve a rate that is acceptable as far as the error rate goes. This will vary depending on how long your analog phone circuit is and also how many other people are on the phone. If you are in a rural area you may be sharing a line with a neighbour. Not a party line but a line that goes through a multiplexer. These are known as a "Pair Gain" unit. It allows two conversations to be carried on a single pair of wires. If that is the case, and you won't be able to find out, then your connection speed will be much lower. Bottom line is that the phone company is selling you a VOICE circuit, not a data line.

Not everyone has access to high speed internet, including me at home. We aren't going to have high speed here anytime soon (not counting satellite, which has a number of problems they don't tell you about, including $$$$). I have ADSL at my business capable of going up to 1 megabyte per second. I have one of my computers rigged so that I can dial in to it from home and access my ADSL with no time limits and no idle disconnect. I'm my own ISP in effect. It actually speeds up my dialup connection some as my ADSL bandwidth is guaranteed and it only takes a few seconds to log on. Also, it is never busy.

chkz
10-18-2003, 10:21 PM
i blew a modem in an electrical storm a couple months back....went and bought a top of the line US Robotics modem....took it back, installed it...wouldn't work! Thought it might have been a bad one "outta the box" (it happens right)....drove all the way back, returned it for another...same thing...back to the store one more time and said "gimme the cheapest piece of sh*t modem you got"....got one for $30.00...popped it in and I'm back online...seems my "rural" phone line was just too noisy for those fancy "big city modems".....

take care & good luck!
Chris