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Thread: Broadband speeds?

  1. #1
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    After all the recent ooh hah about various download speeds from some providers [BT say up to 20mb for example], I`ve just run a test on my line and apparently my download speed is 2295 Kbps...it states "the IP profile for my line is 2500Kbps."

    How does "Kbps" compare with "mb"?

    I know that the 20 mb quoted by BT is the MAXIMUM value, but I would just like to know if my download speed is good, bad or indifferent!





  2. #2
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    Terry,

    Here's a link to the Wikipedia article explaining data rate units:


    In short, kbps (kilobits per second) is 1000 bits per second while Mbps (megabits per second) is 1,000,000 bits per second.

    So, on your test you're getting 2295 kbps which would be 2295 X 1000 (to get down to bits per second). That yields 2,295,000 bits per second or 2.295 Mbps.

    Does this help?

    Tom (... a little bit of this, a little bit of that, pretty soon you're talking about real data!)

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    Thanks Tom, that helps a lot.

    So is 2.295mbps good, bad or rubbish?





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    Quote Originally Posted by Slowhand, post: 179306
    So is 2.295mbps good, bad or rubbish?
    Ahhh... so many variables. This is where it get's interesting. Would you hit me too badly if I said "it depends"?

    Here's the deal. First, we need to know what kind of broad band connection you have. Is it DSL (through your phone provider) or is it cable (through your cable tv provider)? Or something else? They're all different.

    Basically, it comes down to a question of how far you are away from your Internet Provider's access point. Just as an FYI, this access point is usually called a "Point of Presence" or POP. The farther away from the POP you are, the less speed you'll actually get. It degrades over distance. Here in the states, my internet is through my cable tv provider. I pay for upgraded service which they state is up to 50 Mbps. In actuality, I get about 19 to 20 Mbps download speeds (upload is significantly less). So... about 40% of the published speed based on my distance from the POP. For me, this is really quite good. The only place you'd get anywhere near the "published" speed would be if you were right outside your provider's POP. Even then, it wouldn't be as fast as they claim. Usually, their published "up to" figures are based on the theoretical limit of the wire. This is not usually anywhere near reality.

    So... is 2.295 Mbs good, bad, or rubbish? It's not great. But as far out as you are, it may be all you can get with your current provider. You may want to check out this site:


    This speed test works pretty good for me and the international page will even tell you the top ISP's in your region. BTW, I checked it for your location and they show the top ISP being Ovh Systems (whoever they are) at 41.98 Mbps download.

    Hope some of my ramblings helped!

    Tom (... don't you just hate it when someone says "it depends"?)

  5. #5
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    Sounds like it's adsl so the max for normal dsl would currently be 8mbs - if you were right next door to the exchange. 2.x Mbs is "ok" for average distance UK dsl. Not great, nothing to shout about but not shabby either given the state of the UK local loop wiring.

    As Tom says, further you are from the exchange wiring wise, the slower it'll be.

    The test you ran sounds like it's an exchange test which is usually conservative, so you may find in fact you're closer to 3 or 3.5Mbs (they keep the exchange test conservative so it doesnt tell you you'll get 8Mbs for you to have it all ordered and installed and find you only get 1)

    The best uk exchange finder/data is here SamKnows Broadband - Availability - Exchange Search

    Type in your phone number and it'll tell you all sorts about your exchange capability.

    The 20Mbs upgrade that BT is slowly rolling out is called "21CN WBC status:" on that chart. So you'll be able to see when/if it's coming to your exchange any time soon.

    Basically 21CN - 21st century network, is BT moving away from the old style switched networks across to an IP packet based network. As part of this, theyre moving to ADSL2+ which has speeds up to 24mbs. Can read more here
    SamKnows Broadband - BT Wholesale - 21CN Overview

    All of this doesn't do anything about the slow copper to the house/office though I and others believe that to be able to compete in the coming years, we need fibre all the way instead of trying to eek out more capacity from the old local loop.
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    Thanks for chiming in on this Keith! I figured you'd know volumes more about the UK bits than I would. I know that what we've got over here doesn't necessarily map too well to what's over there.

    Quote Originally Posted by Keith, post: 179329
    fibre all the way
    Hmmm... sounds like a Christmas song:

    Jingle bells, Jingle bells, fibre all the way...
    Oh what fun, to download now...

    Oh well... you get the picture.

    By the way, Keith... do you know who the "Ovh Systems" guys are? Just curious.

    Tom (... faster is always better!)

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    Quote Originally Posted by catrancher, post: 179330
    By the way, Keith... do you know who the "Ovh Systems" guys are? Just curious.
    If it's the same crowd I'm thinking of, yeah I know of them in that they're vaguely competitors of ours in the web hosting space (not that we come across them much). If that's not them, then no I don't
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    Quote Originally Posted by Keith, post: 179332
    If it's the same crowd I'm thinking of, yeah I know of them in that they're vaguely competitors of ours in the web hosting space (not that we come across them much). If that's not them, then no I don't
    Ok. Thanks! Close enough for government work!

    Tom (... now... where was I?)

  10. #10
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    Thanks Tom & Keith for those very detailed replies.
    It`s no big deal really as I`m not complaining too much about the download speed but I was just curious how mine compared to the speeds quoted ny some of the providers.

    As you say Keith, as our house is probably some distance away from the exchange, not to mention the fact that our telephone wire was installed in the dark ages, that explains why it is nowhere near what BT state as their maximum speed.





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