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The Computer Audiophile

Weak Internet & Options to Increase Speed

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I've been pleasantly surprised with my ISP.

 

I live in a very working class town and a few blocks from the absolute worst neighborhoods in Minneapolis. If you need evidence, here is a video clip of a little game we play called Gun Shots or Fireworks. When the weather gets nice, all bets are off. Turn your sound up and wait for about 10 seconds.

 

https://video.nest.com/clip/2a774849e9ba4731b6944880cbd568af.mp4

 

 

I provide that info only for background because there aren't people with deep pockets in my area, yet CenturyLink ran fiber to any house that asked. In fact this area was one of the first to receive fiber from CenturyLink. Perhaps higher density and easy access to utility poles to run cable was a factor, but they certainly could have selected a more well heeled area. 

 

Currently I have 1 Gbps up and down, and it almost always measures that way when I run tests. The issue I run into most is finding a test that can actually measure 1 Gbps accurately. Some browsers suck, some test nodes suck, etc...

 

Oh yeah, it's unlimited data as well. With six Nest cameras uploading HD video 24/7 and streaming 4K Netflix movies, we use a fair amount of data. 

 

All for a cool price of $85 including taxes.

 


Founder of Audiophile Style and Superphonica

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1 hour ago, The Computer Audiophile said:

I've been pleasantly surprised with my ISP.

 

I live in a very working class town and a few blocks from the absolute worst neighborhoods in Minneapolis. If you need evidence, here is a video clip of a little game we play called Gun Shots or Fireworks. When the weather gets nice, all bets are off. Turn your sound up and wait for about 10 seconds.

 

https://video.nest.com/clip/2a774849e9ba4731b6944880cbd568af.mp4

 

 

 

Holy Sh!t, ? my guess is gunshots, and they sounded really close!

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3 hours ago, mansr said:

Ajit Pai is for anything that's bad for consumers.

 

Agreed, tho I don't think it his motive.  He either has swallowed the Kool-Aide or is well compensated by powerful monopolies.  Or both.


"The overwhelming majority [of audiophiles] have very little knowledge, if any, about the most basic principles and operating characteristics of audio equipment. They often base their purchasing decisions on hearsay, and the preaching of media sages. Unfortunately, because of commercial considerations, much information is rooted in increasing revenue, not in assisting the audiophile. It seems as if the only requirements for becoming an "authority" in the world of audio is a keyboard."

-- Bruce Rozenblit of Transcendent Sound

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3 hours ago, The Computer Audiophile said:

I've been pleasantly surprised with my ISP.

 

I live in a very working class town and a few blocks from the absolute worst neighborhoods in Minneapolis. If you need evidence, here is a video clip of a little game we play called Gun Shots or Fireworks. When the weather gets nice, all bets are off. Turn your sound up and wait for about 10 seconds.

 

https://video.nest.com/clip/2a774849e9ba4731b6944880cbd568af.mp4

 

 

I provide that info only for background because there aren't people with deep pockets in my area, yet CenturyLink ran fiber to any house that asked. In fact this area was one of the first to receive fiber from CenturyLink. Perhaps higher density and easy access to utility poles to run cable was a factor, but they certainly could have selected a more well heeled area. 

 

Currently I have 1 Gbps up and down, and it almost always measures that way when I run tests. The issue I run into most is finding a test that can actually measure 1 Gbps accurately. Some browsers suck, some test nodes suck, etc...

 

Oh yeah, it's unlimited data as well. With six Nest cameras uploading HD video 24/7 and streaming 4K Netflix movies, we use a fair amount of data. 

 

All for a cool price of $85 including taxes.

 

 

That's nothing.  Try a vacation in sunny Compton sometime.

 

Besides, they were probably celebrating the raccoon.


"The overwhelming majority [of audiophiles] have very little knowledge, if any, about the most basic principles and operating characteristics of audio equipment. They often base their purchasing decisions on hearsay, and the preaching of media sages. Unfortunately, because of commercial considerations, much information is rooted in increasing revenue, not in assisting the audiophile. It seems as if the only requirements for becoming an "authority" in the world of audio is a keyboard."

-- Bruce Rozenblit of Transcendent Sound

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I live in a low density area that has been surrounded by Austin and a couple of suburbs (Cedar Park/Round Rock).  TWC, and now Spectrum, is the only cable provider.  A couple others bailed 12-15 years ago.  I think DSL is available.  Luckily our hood has a TWC/Spectrum upper middle/executive manager living here and he ensures that we are fed the latest and greatest tech in the feeds but, alas, no fiber.  Typically we have great service and I get 15% above my 200/20 connection but, IMO, the cost is high at $100 /mth.


QNAP TS453Pro w/QLMS->Netgear Switch->Netgear R7800 Router->Ethernet (50 ft)->Netgear switch->SBT->Topping NX4 DSD->Linn Majik-IL (preamp)->Linn 2250->Linn Keilidh; Control Points: Squeeze Commander (DroidX) & iPeng (iPad Air); Also: Rega P3-24 w/ DV 10x5; OPPO 103; PC Playback: Foobar2000 & JRiver; Portable: Sony NWZ_ZX1 & ZX2 w/ PHA-3; SMSL IQ, Fiio Q5, iFi Nano iDSD BL; Garage: Edifier S1000DB Active Speakers  Wish List: New DAC,  SBT replacement; Dream system: Linn EXACT or ATC Active or Big Tubes (KR or Nagra or Shindo or ...)

 

My goal is to use appliances and take home PC out of the chain...

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Thought I would update this.  They have gigabit internet in my general area now.  I don't have it yet.  I did piggyback on someone up the road who already has it.  I'll get it in time.  This isn't a great distance (about 1000 ft. or 300 meters).  The connection info is shown in the window for the Ubiquiti software.  I have a Ubiquiti 5 ghz sector at the source end. This is like 3 inches wide, 1 inch deep and 16 inches tall.  Pretty slim and easy to place.  One of the Litebeam reflectors on my end.  They are about the size of a large shoe box.  I do get transfer speeds of between 150 and 200 mbps.  It likely would be better, but I'm shooting through the leaves of a medium sized cherry tree, and there is also a metal flagpole flat dead smack between the two devices like as if surveyor placed it there intentionally.  5 ghz works better if it is a clean line of sight.  On both ends the devices are behind a glass window.  These should work usefully to about 8 miles with a clean line of sight.  I've tested them at a couple miles with really good results.  

 

So if you are close to someone with better internet these are great.  Or if you have property and need to send some good internet to the far corners of what you have or some similar situation.  The Ubquiti Nanostations aren't capable of as much transfer bandwidth, but work great to 100 mbps for shorter distances (like a couple miles or 3 km).  The Nanostations have the advantage of working like high powered WiFi while the other gear has proprietary connection protocols and you'll need a router or similar to distribute it on the receiving end.  

 

Oh, I must also say, having a good internet connection sure is nice.  I previously had DSL which would be 5.5 meg down and .5 meg up in the wee hours of the morning.  About 1.5 down and .5 up during normal hours.  Having these speeds near 200 mbps both up and down is terrific.  I know everyone else doesn't even notice it anymore.  But moving 4 years ago from having 45 meg service to an area with DSL (yes I checked, and yes ATT lied to me about what was available before the move) was a big bummer of an experience.  I can even watch streaming HDTV anytime of day or night.  Previously I couldn't even reliably have any streaming audio. 

 

image.thumb.png.a76364c3de6dd4a4bd2a1668174c8b7b.png


To paraphrase Rick James, "sighted listening is a helluva drug".

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On 6/11/2018 at 10:11 PM, The Computer Audiophile said:

I'm starting this topic because I noticed a few people saying they aren't able to use streaming services because of such slow internet service

I can't add anything to this thread in regard to ISPs and who is best etc. as I am not in the USA and this is all very USA centric.

 

However, and returning to the opening remarks , what speed is required to use a streaming service?

 

Just anecdotally, and I have pointed this out on another thread somewhere, last year I was staying with a friend who lives out in the fenlands on the edges of Norfolk, Cambridge and Lincolnshire in the East of England virtually next to The Wash. One major infrastructure issue over here is the poor internet connections available ( if at all) to people living out in the sticks. My friend gets a 7Mb only service. However I was able to use my phone (connected to his LAN via wifi) to stream Qobuz @ 24/96 successfully. Maybe I could have even played 24/192 but 24/96 is the limit for my portable AQ Dragonfly DAC.

 

So, how slow does  the connection need to be to fail to stream?

 

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2 hours ago, PAR said:

I can't add anything to this thread in regard to ISPs and who is best etc. as I am not in the USA and this is all very USA centric.

 

However, and returning to the opening remarks , what speed is required to use a streaming service?

 

Just anecdotally, and I have pointed this out on another thread somewhere, last year I was staying with a friend who lives out in the fenlands on the edges of Norfolk, Cambridge and Lincolnshire in the East of England virtually next to The Wash. One major infrastructure issue over here is the poor internet connections available ( if at all) to people living out in the sticks. My friend gets a 7Mb only service. However I was able to use my phone (connected to his LAN via wifi) to stream Qobuz @ 24/96 successfully. Maybe I could have even played 24/192 but 24/96 is the limit for my portable AQ Dragonfly DAC.

 

So, how slow does  the connection need to be to fail to stream?

 

I would usually have enough bandwidth to stream music as long as it was MP3.  But the DSL connection was not only slow, but very glitchy.  So you'd drop the stream or get pauses and restarts often enough it would interfere with enjoying the music.  So it was a poor quality connection on their network even beyond just the speed that was available. 


To paraphrase Rick James, "sighted listening is a helluva drug".

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2 hours ago, PAR said:

I can't add anything to this thread in regard to ISPs and who is best etc. as I am not in the USA and this is all very USA centric.

 

However, and returning to the opening remarks , what speed is required to use a streaming service?

 

Just anecdotally, and I have pointed this out on another thread somewhere, last year I was staying with a friend who lives out in the fenlands on the edges of Norfolk, Cambridge and Lincolnshire in the East of England virtually next to The Wash. One major infrastructure issue over here is the poor internet connections available ( if at all) to people living out in the sticks. My friend gets a 7Mb only service. However I was able to use my phone (connected to his LAN via wifi) to stream Qobuz @ 24/96 successfully. Maybe I could have even played 24/192 but 24/96 is the limit for my portable AQ Dragonfly DAC.

Internet speeds in the UK are abysmal. The best I can get in central Southampton is ADSL2 at about 16 Mbps. My phone gets 150-200 Mbps over 4G.

 

2 hours ago, PAR said:

So, how slow does  the connection need to be to fail to stream?

As esldude said, reliability is often what kills streaming before speed as such does.  A 100 Mbps connection that drops for one second every minute would seem fast for web browsing and such, but streaming media could easily suffer. It depends on the local buffer size and how quickly lost packets are noticed and retransmitted. A slow but reliable connection will probably work better.

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2 hours ago, mansr said:

The best I can get in central Southampton is ADSL2 at about 16 Mbps.

 Can you not get fibre to cabinet? I have this from Zen ( maybe one of if not the best of the ISPs over here) and I get a guaranteed 70Mb/s but it sometimes runs a bit faster ( I'm getting 76Mb/s as I write) . I rarely suffer drop outs/glitches. It might be worth checking your address with their online availability app.  BTW the speed I get is fine for 4K TV which is about the most I need in practice.

 

There are  a couple of other audio enthusiasts that I know on another forum who live in Southampton ( for all I  know you may be one of them using a different moniker !) and I could ask what they can get.

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3 minutes ago, PAR said:

 Can you not get fibre to cabinet? I have this from Zen ( maybe one of if not the best of the ISPs over here) and I get a guaranteed 70Mb/s but it sometimes runs a bit faster ( I'm getting 76Mb/s as I write) . I rarely suffer drop outs/glitches. It might be worth checking your address with their online availability app.

I check it from time to time. The only option for anything faster is to get a new FTTP line installed, and I'm not going to pay for that.

 

3 minutes ago, PAR said:

There are  a couple of other audio enthusiasts that I know on another forum who live in Southampton ( for all I  know you may be one of them using a different moniker !) and I could ask what they can get.

Not me.

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On 6/13/2018 at 3:21 PM, jcbenten said:

I live in a low density area that has been surrounded by Austin and a couple of suburbs (Cedar Park/Round Rock).  TWC, and now Spectrum, is the only cable provider.  A couple others bailed 12-15 years ago.  I think DSL is available.  Luckily our hood has a TWC/Spectrum upper middle/executive manager living here and he ensures that we are fed the latest and greatest tech in the feeds but, alas, no fiber.  Typically we have great service and I get 15% above my 200/20 connection but, IMO, the cost is high at $100 /mth.

 

Fellow Austinite and Spectrum customer here. The max we can get in our neighborhood is 300Mbps down, 30 Mbps up. No complaints about downloads, but 30Mbps up is a bit painful for some use cases.

 

For a while there was all this buzz about Google Fiber and AT&T GigiPower, but they always seem to start with the "underserved" areas, which is fine, but then there's been no expansion.

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I found Sorrow446 on Head-Fi etc. and all issues with music streaming services were solved. It's even greater to repurpose PSU for the broadband router and put that somewhere else. Life is good once you've found someone who's such a lifesaver.

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Here is what Netflix recommends for streaming speeds. I know this is not apple-to-apple comparison for purposes here but provides some idea of what is required for video.

 

    0.5 Megabits per second - Required broadband connection speed

    1.5 Megabits per second - Recommended broadband connection speed

    3.0 Megabits per second - Recommended for SD quality

    5.0 Megabits per second - Recommended for HD quality

    25 Megabits per second - Recommended for Ultra HD quality

 

https://help.netflix.com/en/node/306

 

I live in an area (Chattanooga, TN) which has fiber optic cable service and get roughly 300Mbps (up & down) service which is really overkill for us (2 adults & 1 child). I use Google Wifi where you can monitor usage and I have never seen it go over 100Mbps. They offer 1Gbps speed but I can't see why I would spend the extra $$ although a lot of my neighbors do.

 

My rule of thumb is 25Mbps per person which is based on the Netflix speed for Ultra HD video. So if each of us is separately watching an Ultra HD movie, that is 75Mbps.

 

Also, on my Linux music server, I monitor the network traffic and it usually runs around 3-4Mbps. I don't do streaming for music so can't really comment on what that takes but all this provides some idea.


Eric

 

Custom Linux server (Ubuntu Studio - Roon - HQ Player) > Sonore microRendu (HQP NAA) >

Buffalo-IIIsePro-28 > Hypex NC400 > Klipsch Forte III

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45 minutes ago, austinpop said:

 

Fellow Austinite and Spectrum customer here. The max we can get in our neighborhood is 300Mbps down, 30 Mbps up. No complaints about downloads, but 30Mbps up is a bit painful for some use cases.

 

For a while there was all this buzz about Google Fiber and AT&T GigiPower, but they always seem to start with the "underserved" areas, which is fine, but then there's been no expansion.

300/30 is available in my hood but I never upgraded all the way.  Not really an issue.  Only my wife and me and I seldom saturate the download bandwidth.

 

I thought the Fiber guys were only doing high density and high dollar areas.  Also I think Google slowed down due to lack of returns.  I do not think even the neighbor can get fiber run into our hood although he indicated some upgrades coming to increase speeds.  A new neighborhood just went up on Parmer/Brushy Creek and I wonder if they have fiber...right across the fence from my hood.  We are very low density and no one really wants to expand into our area.


QNAP TS453Pro w/QLMS->Netgear Switch->Netgear R7800 Router->Ethernet (50 ft)->Netgear switch->SBT->Topping NX4 DSD->Linn Majik-IL (preamp)->Linn 2250->Linn Keilidh; Control Points: Squeeze Commander (DroidX) & iPeng (iPad Air); Also: Rega P3-24 w/ DV 10x5; OPPO 103; PC Playback: Foobar2000 & JRiver; Portable: Sony NWZ_ZX1 & ZX2 w/ PHA-3; SMSL IQ, Fiio Q5, iFi Nano iDSD BL; Garage: Edifier S1000DB Active Speakers  Wish List: New DAC,  SBT replacement; Dream system: Linn EXACT or ATC Active or Big Tubes (KR or Nagra or Shindo or ...)

 

My goal is to use appliances and take home PC out of the chain...

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My area is one of the underserved areas.  The person I'm piggybacking off of right now has 1 gig service up and down.  It actually manages 930-950 mbps both ways.  Basically though they told no one, our area was the last on the list where they were expanding fiber from the money the gov't gave them to do this some 3 years ago.  That money and that program is coming to an end.  More money has been earmarked for the big ISP's in the near future.  I'm glad of course it is happening, but it is another one of those public expense, private profit programs.  ATT is laying off workers now they've come to the end of the govt funding. 

 

https://www.techdirt.com/articles/20190618/07430842417/att-lays-off-thousands-after-nabbing-billions-tax-breaks-regulatory-favors.shtml

 

If you lack access and someone in your general area has great access these wireless devices can do a lot of good for you.  They are not quite plug and play, but not too difficult to set up.  I've seen too many people who could use them and aren't aware of their existence. 


To paraphrase Rick James, "sighted listening is a helluva drug".

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5G


"The overwhelming majority [of audiophiles] have very little knowledge, if any, about the most basic principles and operating characteristics of audio equipment. They often base their purchasing decisions on hearsay, and the preaching of media sages. Unfortunately, because of commercial considerations, much information is rooted in increasing revenue, not in assisting the audiophile. It seems as if the only requirements for becoming an "authority" in the world of audio is a keyboard."

-- Bruce Rozenblit of Transcendent Sound

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4 minutes ago, Ralf11 said:

5G

I still don't get 5G.  5G offers these high speeds, but you'll need access points in high density, and those access points will need fiber connections.  So 5G is going to serve rural areas, and other underserved areas?  Doesn't add up to me.  They could put the fiber in and not need the extra step of 5G.  You can't even say 5G fixes the last mile problem.  It is more like the last few hundred feet problem.  Does it add up to have these access points that densely located to take fiber from there to the home or office building?  I basically think it all a lie, not unlike most of the other stuff from the big providers.  5G for a long, long time seems destined only for population dense areas if you ask me. 

 

If 4G were built out just a little more it could serve many more areas than it does.  It hasn't happened.  It isn't going to happen because 5G.  


To paraphrase Rick James, "sighted listening is a helluva drug".

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5G net served by a sat. link - watch what happens (maybe first in rural India)


"The overwhelming majority [of audiophiles] have very little knowledge, if any, about the most basic principles and operating characteristics of audio equipment. They often base their purchasing decisions on hearsay, and the preaching of media sages. Unfortunately, because of commercial considerations, much information is rooted in increasing revenue, not in assisting the audiophile. It seems as if the only requirements for becoming an "authority" in the world of audio is a keyboard."

-- Bruce Rozenblit of Transcendent Sound

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41 minutes ago, esldude said:

I still don't get 5G.  5G offers these high speeds, but you'll need access points in high density, and those access points will need fiber connections. So 5G is going to serve rural areas, and other underserved areas?

5G is actually a collection of different radio modes optimised for various densities and ranges. Rural areas would be served by low-density long-range modes.

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2 minutes ago, mansr said:

5G is actually a collection of different radio modes optimised for various densities and ranges. Rural areas would be served by low-density long-range modes.

Yes, I knew 5G is as much a newer improved network protocol as the multi-ghz links that get most of the attention.  But you aren't getting gigabit speeds at those ranges on lower frequencies I don't think.  Or maybe I'm wrong about that.  

 

As for satellite to India or to here, I don't know what Musk plans for his satellite internet as to whether it will be 5G or not (certainly it could be).  It makes more sense than the idea these existing ISPs are going to run fiber all the places outside of cities for 5G access points.  One of those things I'd be happy to be wrong about. 


To paraphrase Rick James, "sighted listening is a helluva drug".

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Currently, you get throughput reaching 10 Gbps on air/per radio only with carriers of  2 GHz bandwidth.

Those large bandwidth are available only in mmW spectrum (> 60GHz).

Electromagnetic waves are more sensitive to climatic conditions at those wave lengths, therefore links,will not exceed 5 km.

Practically, at wireless end users level, only those around 300 m may truly benefit low latency once available.

Average capacity will also increase because network providers are densifying their microwave networks with higher capacity equipment.

Rural or remote areas may never benefit it unless crowded during holidays ( touristic places, etc).

 

@esldude:

The solution you provided is great. Nevertheless, looking at specifications I will not suggest to use it for distances above 1 km.

Microwave commercial links are designed with an availability of 99.999% per month or year.It translates into some fade margin usually around 20 dB or more in order to cope with propagation issues.

In your case there is no margin.

Anyhow the philosophy nowadays is to care less when dealing with packets,for such applications, since they will be resent in case of errors.

 

 

 

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2 hours ago, Arpiben said:

Currently, you get throughput reaching 10 Gbps on air/per radio only with carriers of  2 GHz bandwidth.

Those large bandwidth are available only in mmW spectrum (> 60GHz).

Electromagnetic waves are more sensitive to climatic conditions at those wave lengths, therefore links,will not exceed 5 km.

Practically, at wireless end users level, only those around 300 m may truly benefit low latency once available.

Average capacity will also increase because network providers are densifying their microwave networks with higher capacity equipment.

Rural or remote areas may never benefit it unless crowded during holidays ( touristic places, etc).

 

@esldude:

The solution you provided is great. Nevertheless, looking at specifications I will not suggest to use it for distances above 1 km.

Microwave commercial links are designed with an availability of 99.999% per month or year.It translates into some fade margin usually around 20 dB or more in order to cope with propagation issues.

In your case there is no margin.

Anyhow the philosophy nowadays is to care less when dealing with packets,for such applications, since they will be resent in case of errors.

 

 

 

I've used it in testing at 2 miles (touch over  3km).   There are plenty of people who use them at 5 to 8 miles.  In my example the radios automatically lower the transmit power.  They would put out more if the distance were greater.  Plus I'm shooting thru the branches of a fair sized tree.  The speeds I managed at 2 miles were around 100 mbps.  And they will drop some with greater range.  

 

Ubiquiti has some good charts to figure out how much output, antenna gain, and speed you can expect at different distances.  You won't get 200 mbps at 8 miles.  You could well get a reliable 25 mbps.  The devices I listed above are part of their suggestions for 5-15 km distances.  15 km is a bit over 9 miles.  They have other gear for longer distances if needed.   They also have a nice bit of software to simulate what you are planning to show coverages and whether you have clean line of site or not. 

 

You'll need to get line of sight and pay attention to encroachments on the fresnel zone to get the best out of them at distance.  I don't want to over-hype them so people think you can throw a pair of them up and get 8 miles or more.  That won't work.  You need to apply them properly and mind the details.  At a cost of about $100 each, these can be very good for the DIY.  Also be warned the Ubquiti forums can be very helpful, but they don't suffer fools or newbies very well.  

 

If anyone wanted to contemplate using these this training PDF is an excellent place to start.  71 pages, really about 36 pages with the rest being references and charts. Fairly simple and you could read thru it a little at time.  You'll have a good idea of what is possible and how it can be applied. 

https://dl.ubnt.com/guides/training/courses/UBWA_V2.1_Training_Guide_03-09-17.pdf


To paraphrase Rick James, "sighted listening is a helluva drug".

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3 hours ago, esldude said:

Yes, I knew 5G is as much a newer improved network protocol as the multi-ghz links that get most of the attention.  But you aren't getting gigabit speeds at those ranges on lower frequencies I don't think.

No, probably not.

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