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dennis55
2009-09-14, 08:58
"'Next generation' wi-fi approved",according to the BBC Tech blog.
my Belkin router is Draft N approved,will Logitech be upgrading their wireless transmitters?,and will there be a retrograde fit mod available.

dennis

funkstar
2009-09-14, 09:30
"'Next generation' wi-fi approved",according to the BBC Tech blog.
my Belkin router is Draft N approved,will Logitech be upgrading their wireless transmitters?,and will there be a retrograde fit mod available.

dennis
I'll stick my neck out and say: no.

This does pave the way for N in future products, if the component prices are right and when embedded products become available from Logitech's suppliers.

iPhone
2009-09-14, 09:42
"'Next generation' wi-fi approved",according to the BBC Tech blog.
my Belkin router is Draft N approved,will Logitech be upgrading their wireless transmitters?,and will there be a retrograde fit mod available.

dennis

Draft N approved doesn't necessarily mean that a Router meets the now finally approved current Standard. The Router could require nothing, a Firmware upgrade, or even not be able to meet the now finally approved Standard. The main reason for this is that Companies forged ahead with their idea of "Draft N" because it was taking so long.

There is nothing wrong with G Wifi and G works and plays well with N. It is not like the old problem of B & G Wifi not playing well together and pulling the whole wireless network down to B level if mixed.

Also G is more then qualified for use with Squeezebox. Would N help in some cases, sure it would. It could also very well make things worse is other cases.

As for retrofitting, I can't speak for Logitech but I can almost guarantee that you'll never see that happen. The current new models being released at the end of the month and in December will both come with G Wifi cards. At some point in the future will Squeezeboxes come with N Standard Wifi, I am sure they will. Will that be before or after G cards are no longer available, I can't say but I'm betting it will be later rater then sooner (I would bet cost and only cost will drive any change to N).

Again these are my opinions and considering that N doesn't make that much difference to the device's performance I wouldn't look for a change anytime soon.

andynormancx
2009-09-14, 09:47
Again these are my opinions and considering that N doesn't make that much difference to the device's performance I wouldn't look for a change anytime soon.
Whereas on the other hand, upgrading your old G access point to a modern N class one can make great improvements to the performance of your G class devices. Highly recommended ;)

pfarrell
2009-09-14, 09:56
iPhone wrote:
> Draft N approved doesn't necessarily mean

Its been formally approved for what, 48 hours?

This whole discussion is silly. 11g is fine for music.

> As for retrofitting, I can't speak for Logitech but I can almost
> guarantee that you'll never see that happen.

In what world does it make sense to retrofit anything to a $200 consumer
product? Any service by a tech is going to cost $50. It makes zero
financial sense to either the customer or the vendor.


> Again these are my opinions and considering that N doesn't make that
> much difference to the device's performance

I completely agree.

--
Pat Farrell
http://www.pfarrell.com/

Goodsounds
2009-09-14, 10:35
Will that be before or after G cards are no longer available, I can't say but I'm betting it will be later rater then sooner (I would bet cost and only cost will drive any change to N).

I generally agree with your comments here but not this one. I'd bet the decision driver here for the company is maximum interoperability, not component cost. The cost is not that significant, and what is at issue is a strategic market decision. So long as G routers/APs continue to be sold and have a greater than trivial presence in homes (and if N routers continue to be G+N), it would be a mistake to make a product that doesn't work with G. Maybe dual standard cards might be used at a future date?

There are many Wifi component suppliers, high-ish part prices don't last long in such markets.

cfuttrup
2009-09-14, 10:49
The idea to support wireless-n can make sense, if users prefer to make their future setup in a wireless-n _only_ system. They obviously can't do that if they buy squeezebox gear that requires wireless-g.

Wireless-n is approved ... and within the next year things will move in that direction. Slimdevices _may_ be able to argue that high speed is not required for e.g. their remotes (I have a Duet) and that the wireless-g gear can coexist on the same network ... other arguments exist, what about the range available to wireless-n equipment?

Best regards,
Claus

funkstar
2009-09-14, 11:39
I generally agree with your comments here but not this one. I'd bet the decision driver here for the company is maximum interoperability, not component cost. The cost is not that significant, and what is at issue is a strategic market decision. So long as G routers/APs continue to be sold and have a greater than trivial presence in homes (and if N routers continue to be G+N), it would be a mistake to make a product that doesn't work with G. Maybe dual standard cards might be used at a future date?

There are many Wifi component suppliers, high-ish part prices don't last long in such markets.
Both N class client devices and N class infrastructure devices are are backwards compatible with other G equipment.

dsdreamer
2009-09-14, 23:14
I see lots of people agreeing with each other that 'N' is unnecessary for music, which it certainly is from a bandwidth point of view. But in many dense urban areas, the whole 2.4GHz band is pretty much unusable! Everyone seems to have a wireless router, usually on a fixed, but randomly chosen channel clashing with 2-3 other wireless routers.

Since .11g is by definition used only in the 2.4GHz band, your two viable choices are good ol' .11a (with its limited range) and .11n used in the 5GHz band (which recovers most of the range loss using diversity techniques).

I also don't get why using a .11n router with .11g equipment can be expected to yield a performance gain (even though Sean used to say the same thing). In this scenario, the .11g station has just one antenna and the .11n AP has two or three. Unless the AP can transmit using more than one antenna in .11g mode, there should be no performance gain on the link from the AP to the station compared to a pure .11g configuration. As far as I know, an 802.11n AP can only use selection diversity on transmit when talking to a .11g station, but could benefit from maximal ratio combining (MRC) diversity in receive mode. Since the improvement can only be had when the .11n AP is in receive mode, the same weak link in the chain remains when the .11n AP is talking to the .11g station, which is the main mode needed for transmitting music from a wired central server out to various Squeezebox stations. Somebody please correct me if I am wrong.

MrSinatra
2009-09-15, 01:20
http://www.tomshardware.com/news/802.11n-wifi-wireless-draft,8655.html

i don't see why logitech products wouldn't now use N. there are benefits, its final, time to adapt, whats wrong with that?

(i'd like to see future products allow for user upgrades of the actual wireless card in the product)

Mnyb
2009-09-15, 01:26
http://www.tomshardware.com/news/802.11n-wifi-wireless-draft,8655.html

i don't see why logitech products wouldn't now use N. there are benefits, its final, time to adapt, whats wrong with that?

(i'd like to see future products allow for user upgrades of the actual wireless card in the product)

Actually this could be an enhancement request for the Touch it is an complete linux computer ? it should be "only" a driver issue.
I bet some Linux wizz is going to do exactly that and post it in the forum.

Controller might be a lost case it does not seem to have the cpu/hardware to move data at near 11g speed as it is.

The old players is afiak not possible at all to upgrade.

andynormancx
2009-09-15, 01:40
I also don't get why using a .11n router with .11g equipment can be expected to yield a performance gain (even though Sean used to say the same thing).
I don't know about the theory of why it can or cannot improve performance.

I do however know that the three times I have replaced on G class boxes with N class it has more than doubled the effective range (and also lead to more reliable streaming at close range). That is with three different models of G class and three different models of N class.

Maybe it is nothing to do with the N/G and just that the Ns were more recently designed and therefore took advantage of experience gained ?

andynormancx
2009-09-15, 01:42
Actually this could be an enhancement request for the Touch it is an complete linux computer ? it should be "only" a driver issue.

It is only a driver issue if the wifi chipset in the Touch supports N. I'd be very surprised if that were the case.

bpa
2009-09-15, 01:46
I don't know about the theory of why it can or cannot improve performance.

A few years ago I replaced my wrt54g V1 with a wrt54g V5 router - both g routers - the v5 had newer faster processor, less memory and newer wireless hardware. The range and reliability improved.

In any design, experience helps build better products and also compromises are made to meet price points. The latest generation of wireless routers (i.e. n) have a much bigger potential customer base than the g routers so different design choices can be made.

Mnyb
2009-09-15, 01:54
It is only a driver issue if the wifi chipset in the Touch supports N. I'd be very surprised if that were the case.

Aha it not a separate wifi card as most of the older designs ?
The chip is actually soldered to the board ?
They could be N compatible who knows, if it is a never chipset, could be a selling point for the chip manufacturer to have it that way.

Anyway it would not bother me much, your are going to offload the wifi a lot when your computers are moving to N.

My 11g networks is still reliable although I have 17 visible networks in my neighbourhood

peter
2009-09-24, 04:57
funkstar wrote:
> Goodsounds;458121 Wrote:
>
>> I generally agree with your comments here but not this one. I'd bet the
>> decision driver here for the company is maximum interoperability, not
>> component cost. The cost is not that significant, and what is at issue
>> is a strategic market decision. So long as G routers/APs continue to be
>> sold and have a greater than trivial presence in homes (and if N routers
>> continue to be G+N), it would be a mistake to make a product that
>> doesn't work with G. Maybe dual standard cards might be used at a future
>> date?
>>
>> There are many Wifi component suppliers, high-ish part prices don't
>> last long in such markets.
>>
> Both N class client devices and N class infrastructure devices are are
> backwards compatible with other G equipment.
>
Sure they are, but Logitech is a commercial company. If the competition
offers N consumers will start to make buying decisions influenced by the
lack of N. G will soon get the 'old technology' badge. It would be a
very bad decision commercially NOT to switch to N.

Even with existing users. I don't think I'll buy myself a 'touch' even
though they seem nice, but if they had N that would be one more reason
for me to buy one. I kown all the arguments you guys make and I know my
networking but I'd go for an N device if I had the choice.

Regards,
Peter

MrSinatra
2009-09-24, 05:28
i don't think its insignificant to point out that being able to set your router to "N only" has security benefits. if you live in a crowded wifi place and your neighbors kid is hacking left and right but doesn't have or can't afford a N device, thats only to your benefit, performance issues aside.

i just don't understand why logitech wouldn't move to N on all products and make them user upgradeable. hell, make it something i can ONLY buy from logitech, its future revenue and i'd buy upgrades as needed.

abelincoln
2009-09-24, 06:26
I for one would like it just for the fact it offers considerably longer range so I could finally get a decent signal in my garage.

funkstar
2009-09-24, 06:54
Sure they are, but Logitech is a commercial company. If the competition
offers N consumers will start to make buying decisions influenced by the
lack of N. G will soon get the 'old technology' badge. It would be a
very bad decision commercially NOT to switch to N.
Easily sorted. Just put a sticker on the box saying "Compatible with N-class wireless networks" Which is true, just like any other G-class device out there. 99% of people won't know or care that it isn't actually a N-class device.


i just don't understand why logitech wouldn't move to N on all products and make them user upgradeable. hell, make it something i can ONLY buy from logitech, its future revenue and i'd buy upgrades as needed.
Probably because things aren't that simple, especially for the older IP3K players. Ubicom would need to release a drop in replacement for the G wireless card in the SB3 (for example) and issue updated software for the IP3K processor to handle it. Logitech would then need to include this in the firmware. Then you have two questions: 1. Is there enough space in the firmware for the new drivers? 2. If there is, can both sets of software live side by side?

Introducing new technology to a mature line like this is no trivial task.

Then you have the new players which I would presume have embedded wireless hardware as opposed to add on cards. This will not be somethign that can be changed. Yes there is far more possibility for Touch and Radio to support new wireless hardware as they are littel linux systems and far more flexible. But I suspect support would become a complete nightmare.

tedfroop
2009-09-24, 07:47
The whole thing comes down to this - upgrades to wireless will require:

a. All new firmware. (That stuff is not in the public domain so there is no linux wizz kid hacking it)

b. An all new wireless receiver - no doubt not an off the shelf part and in all probability a proprietary bus connector and card connector.

c. New router hardware for anyone with a draft n router that is not compatible.

You want to do all that to carry a stream that will fit in 802.11b bandwidth with room to spare.

exile
2009-09-24, 08:37
a long time ago there was a thread here in the forums that debated wireless vs wired and some sage person simply said- whenever possible use a wired connection. I think that advice still holds true. I'm all for advancing wireless technology and wireless n sounds great as long as all of your hardware is updated, all of your firmware is updated, your router is n compatible and you're operating on the 5ghz band and not 2.5 ghz. as long as you have that going for you, n is marvelous.

dsdreamer
2009-09-24, 10:51
The whole thing comes down to this - upgrades to wireless will require:

a. All new firmware. (That stuff is not in the public domain so there is no linux wizz kid hacking it)

b. An all new wireless receiver - no doubt not an off the shelf part and in all probability a proprietary bus connector and card connector.

c. New router hardware for anyone with a draft n router that is not compatible.

You want to do all that to carry a stream that will fit in 802.11b bandwidth with room to spare.

You're right about the bandwidth issue, but that is not the point. I think it is time to recognize that 2.4GHz is not fit for reliable streaming and it's only going to get worse over time. If you accept that, your only other option is 5GHz, and the only way to make 5GHz viable for whole home coverage is to use 802.11n.

On the other hand, revisiting old product lines is not likey to be sustainable, as the costs of doing so outweight the benefits from a commercial point of view. It's real pity the current batch of new products didn't anticipate 802.11n becoming official.

My own solution is to pair each of my wireless SB clients with an Apple Airport Express, which adds about $100 per node. This may not be elegant, but it does give me the choice of Airtunes and Slimproto at the flick of a switch (my kids all use iTunes and sometimes want to play their music on a nice system). Doing this has removed the problem of overcrowded 2.4GHz spectrum, since there are plenty of unused channels at 5GHz.

pfarrell
2009-09-24, 11:03
dsdreamer wrote:
> You're right about the bandwidth issue, but that is not the point. I
> think it is time to recognize that 2.4GHz is not fit for reliable
> streaming and it's only going to get worse over time. If you accept
> that, your only other option is 5GHz, and the only way to make 5GHz
> viable for whole home coverage is to use 802.11n.

I believe that everyone who engineers in this space understands that 2.4
was an unrealistic choice, but it was made because it was available as
it was unacceptable for other reasons.

I don't agree that 5 GHz is the solution, but with today's FCC, we are
stuck with it. I don't think fixed frequency allocation is a winner long
term.

> It's real pity the current batch of new
> products didn't anticipate 802.11n becoming official.

What bull. The products were in manufacturing before the 802.11n spec
was official. Its impossible without a time travel machine to
"anticipate" it, as the spec was going to be approved "RSN" for nearly
eight years.


> Doing this has removed the problem of overcrowded 2.4GHz spectrum, since there are plent of
> unused channels at 5GHz.

This is true today. I do not expect it to continue. Once everyone is
streaming HDTV+3D all over, we will be back to the same problem.

11n is a nice step forward, and as it becomes available, it will help
for a while. It is not the greatest thing since sliced bread.


--
Pat Farrell
http://www.pfarrell.com/

funkstar
2009-09-24, 11:05
It's real pity the current batch of new products didn't anticipate 802.11n becoming official.
Again, this goes back to the availability of embedded solutions with working and stable drivers. At least with 802.11g it is well understood by the Logitech hardware designers. Throwing 802.11n into the development schedule would have been asking for trouble, you also have very few people that would be able to test it properly. I for one would rather have reliable wireless networking that the latest and greatest standard.

It's all right for PC hardware vendors as there is an expectation that you will replace is in a year. With the Squeezebox line, there is an expectation that you will be using it for many years to come.

Oh and expect the same reliability and compatibility issues with N gear once they start pumping routers out for $30.

Yes, eventually new players will come along with N wireless, just don't expect them soon. And don't criticise the developers for it not being in a product that is launching around the time of the final ratified standard (the standard may be official, but the full spec hasn't been published yet, that will happen sometime in October).

snarlydwarf
2009-09-24, 11:42
a long time ago there was a thread here in the forums that debated wireless vs wired and some sage person simply said- whenever possible use a wired connection. I think that advice still holds true. I'm all for advancing wireless technology and wireless n sounds great as long as all of your hardware is updated, all of your firmware is updated, your router is n compatible and you're operating on the 5ghz band and not 2.5 ghz. as long as you have that going for you, n is marvelous.

I will agree with that as long as you add at the end "for now".

More and more cordless phones are in the 5G band (including mine, so it won't clutter up my 2.4G network!), so the only real advantage is getting away from microwave ovens.... God only knows there must be some other evil lurking in 5G. They don't give out the "good" bands as unlicensed unless it is totally worthless for licensed use.

And if perchance they -did- give out something that wasn't hampered by interference, dumping a ton of new electronics (alarm systems, phones, TV-relayer-thingies, etc) into the same mix will just mean in a few years 5G will be as polluted as 2.4G is...

dsdreamer
2009-09-24, 11:45
dsdreamer wrote:
> It's real pity the current batch of new
> products didn't anticipate 802.11n becoming official.

What bull. The products were in manufacturing before the 802.11n spec
was official. Its impossible without a time travel machine to
"anticipate" it, as the spec was going to be approved "RSN" for nearly
eight years.



I didn't expect to see IEEE 802.11n compliant product at this time, but I look at what other companies are delivering in the 802.11n space. http://www.wi-fi.org/search_products.php?search=1&advanced=1&lang=en&filter_company_id=&filter_category_id=&filter_subcategory=&filter_cid=&date_from=&date_to=&x=30&y=18&selected_certifications%5B%5D=33

It is the WiFi Alliance that provides certification tests that help ensure interoperability. So there has been a market for WiFi certified 802.11n draft 2 products for several years. Logitech's SMBU decided not to play, that's all. My idea of anticipating 802.11n would have been to release WiFi certified .11n draft 2 now, and take the same ride as the rest of the industy is towards full IEEE .11n compliance.


Yes, eventually new players will come along with N wireless, just don't expect them soon. And don't criticise the developers for it not being in a product that is launching around the time of the final ratified standard (the standard may be official, but the full spec hasn't been published yet, that will happen sometime in October).

Please understand: I am not criticising the devlopers, I simply stated that I think it is a pity. Yes, I do think it was a bad decision. You are entitled to differ and the market will ultimately decide. That's what I love about captialism!

pfarrell
2009-09-24, 12:09
>> What bull. The products were in manufacturing before the 802.11n spec
>> was official. Its impossible without a time travel machine to
>> "anticipate" it, as the spec was going to be approved "RSN" for nearly
>> eight years.
>
> I didn't expect to see IEEE 802.11n _compliant_ product at this time,

You could have fooled me.

Anyway, the managers decided (not the developers who you are slagging)
that they would wait, and did. None of your whining will change that.

> Please understand: I am not criticising the devlopers,

Again, bull. You are, and if anything, its the PHB not the engineers who
should be your targets.

Good day, sir.


--
Pat Farrell
http://www.pfarrell.com/

dsdreamer
2009-09-24, 13:41
Anyway, the managers decided (not the developers who you are slagging)
that they would wait, and did. None of your whining will change that.

> Please understand: I am not criticising the devlopers,

Again, bull. You are, and if anything, its the PHB not the engineers who
should be your targets.

Good day, sir.


..how anything I have said in this thread could be interpreted as "slagging developers". Seriously! Please, check carefully and let me know, because as far as I can tell there is not a single noun or pronoun in my posts that expresses or implies "developers" as being to blame for this strategic decision. And if you can show different, I will certainly apologize.

Best regards,

Ikabob
2009-09-24, 15:59
Can someone tell me how any of this will affect a new Squeezebox Boom and SB3 owner...in "Squeezebox for Dummies" language? Thank you. Will it change the great fidelity and awesome features that I am enjoying now? I hope not.

dsdreamer
2009-09-24, 17:11
Can someone tell me how any of this will affect a new Squeezebox Boom and SB3 owner...in "Squeezebox for Dummies" language? Thank you. Will it change the great fidelity and awesome features that I am enjoying now? I hope not.

Existing products that are working well now, will very likely continue to do so in the future (unless your immediate neighbors install new wireless access points that start to cause interference with yours).

My argument has been that in densely populated locations, there is a risk of running out of WiFi channels to use (there are only 3 such channels that don't overlap). If this is not a problem for you now, don't worry about it! However, if you start to see unreliable streaming, one possible cause is having nearby neighbors that use the same WiFi channel as you do.

Hope that helps.

Ikabob
2009-09-24, 17:41
Thank you. Yes, that could possibly be a problem. Is this a done deal by the FCC?

funkstar
2009-09-25, 02:43
Can someone tell me how any of this will affect a new Squeezebox Boom and SB3 owner...in "Squeezebox for Dummies" language? Thank you. Will it change the great fidelity and awesome features that I am enjoying now? I hope not.
The wireless transport protocol has zero effect on the fidelity or features.

802.11n itself has nothing to do with the FCC, they don't get involved with the communication standards, especially not in unlicensed bands. All they do in the testing reports is make sure devices are not spewing out masses of interference that they shouldn't be and all communications are within that licensed or unlicensed band.

pski
2009-09-26, 13:37
I don't know about the theory of why it can or cannot improve performance.

I do however know that the three times I have replaced on G class boxes with N class it has more than doubled the effective range (and also lead to more reliable streaming at close range). That is with three different models of G class and three different models of N class.

Maybe it is nothing to do with the N/G and just that the Ns were more recently designed and therefore took advantage of experience gained ?

Apparently, all radios are not created equal:

1. Belkin N-Mimo (F5D8233-4v3; 3.01.29 Aug. 15, 2008) (set for N/G only)
2. Linksys 2.4G (WRT54G V6; 1.02.5 build 2, Jan. 9, 2008) (set for G only)

Both configured identically in security, channel, etc. Both are supposed to be the newest firmware. Tested in exactly the same location attached with the same Cat 5e cable.

Three SB's:
belkin% linksys%
1. boom 56 68
2. receiver 76 89
3. sb3 80 84

With a thin interior door closed, the sb3 was reading 65% from the belkin and was re-buffering about every 15 seconds. This has never been an issue with the linksys.

I was hoping for improved signal but it's not going to happen. (I'm getting a little over 30% about 120 feet and one wall away at the dock with the linksys and I was hoping to improve that so I could up the LAME rate when I use the boom there..)

Luckily the belkin can find a new home fairly easily.

P

funkstar
2009-09-26, 13:44
Belkin
Well there's you problem! ;)

SamS
2009-09-27, 07:34
Anyone want to recommend a new wireless AP for me? Currently using Linksys WRT54G2. I only have G devices, but I need a bit more range.

funkstar
2009-09-27, 08:46
Anyone want to recommend a new wireless AP for me? Currently using Linksys WRT54G2. I only have G devices, but I need a bit more range.

I like my Edimax EW-7416APn I've had zero issues with it and all the various Squeezebox players and the Controller. It also does WPS (Wireless Protected Setup) which is makes setting up any of the SqueezeOS based devices a very very simple.