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View Full Version : Wireless Reception - Minimums and improvements?



bstark73
2005-11-30, 20:27
Hi,

I have posted a similar msg before talking about a couple of different items, but wanted to follow up, focusing wireless signal reception only.

I have an office off the kitchen (extension over the garage) where my server and wireless AP sit. The squeezebox 3 sits in the living room which is about 1 room and a hallway away.

Anyway, my problems are:
- the server generally reports about an average of 25% sig. strength.
- however, using a laptop in the same room (or anywhere in the house for that matter), it reports 'excellent' and 4-5 bars always.

so, questions:
- does anyone else have similar experience of the squeezebox reporting significantly lower signal strengths than laptops? The squeezebox is sitting in an open cabinet on top of my TV, so i know this will drop the signal a bit, but shouldn't drop it that much.

- what is the generally accepted minimum that you should be at to provide 100%, solid performance? The server says my signal strength is 'bad', yet most of the time it works fine - i have seen the device lose connection and go 'blank' for a bit? Can i live with 25% average or do i need to somehow fix this.

As a follow up with the 2nd question, i do have an opportunity for a bit of a network re-arrangement. As luck has it, there is a phone jack in a pantry, right in the middle of the house. I could put the DSL modem and wireless AP in there, and use a USB Wireless adaptor on my PC:

Slim <---> AP <-----> PC (all wireless connections)

My question is - when using the normal ad-hoc infrastructure mode, i assume/believe that all packets go via the AP. Is this correct? That is, when the PC is streaming to the squeezebox, does the stream go to the squeezebox via the AP or straight to the squeezebox? If it goes via the AP, assuming the buffer in the squeezebox can handle the slight delay of the stream going thru the AP, i assume this would be a much more reliable connection right since i am effectively halving the distance any wireless communications need to travel?? The only downfall is that my PC is now on a wireless, rather than the current wired connection.

Whew, long post - hope it was clear!

thanks,
Brett.

seanadams
2005-11-30, 20:48
Signal strength is only really useful as a self-relative measure for improvement by moving things around, or aiming antennas and such.

In practice there are issues like packet loss, congestion, router performance etc which are not exactly reflected by the signal strength reading.

MrC
2005-11-30, 23:15
My question is - when using the normal ad-hoc infrastructure mode, i assume/believe that all packets go via the AP. Is this correct? That is, when the PC is streaming to the squeezebox, does the stream go to the squeezebox via the AP or straight to the squeezebox? If it goes via the AP, assuming the buffer in the squeezebox can handle the slight delay of the stream going thru the AP, i assume this would be a much more reliable connection right since i am effectively halving the distance any wireless communications need to travel?? The only downfall is that my PC is now on a wireless, rather than the current wired connection.
Maybe this was a typo, but you mention infrastructure and ad-hoc modes as if they were one and the same. The picture you show is for infrastructure mode. In fact, if you are using an AP, by definition you have an "infrastructure". Ad-hoc is peer-to-peer, as in two laptops talking with each other (sans-AP).

Your wireless PC server does not stream directly to your wireless SB - all traffic must be passed on via the AP.

bstark73
2005-12-01, 07:42
OK, sorry - i meant to differentiate adhoc and peer-peer. So, if i set up as in the diagram, (ie make my connection between the PC and the AP wireless), all communications will still go thru the AP since this is infrastructure mode.

thanks.