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USB WiFi dongle annoyance

Jebcovet
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4 hours ago, Donut417 said:

You dont need AC. Wireless N had dual band. You can see if any of those will work. While it wont be as fast as AC, it will work better than a 2.4 Ghz only device. 

Indeed, from what I have seen the last half-height Atheros WiFi adapter made for mini-PCIe was n based.  There seem to be plenty on eBay if you search for "atheros dual band mini pcie".  There also seem to be a fair few Broadcom based units which seems to be what that laptop came with.

If you want a decent none-Realtek USB adapter I suspect they are going to physically protrude from the laptop a lot further as all the small adapters are likely to be Realtek.

 

One thing worth considering though, if your laptop comes with a 1x1 card (which seems likely given the link rate) it "might" be worth upgrading it to a 2x2 whitelisted card.  Even if you're still stuck on 2.4Ghz it could be anywhere up to twice as fast.

 

I'm seeing:

WLAN, WiFi 2x2 BGN+BT4.0, Cbt BCM43227HMB BGN+BT HMC (Z585) FRU 20200045
WLAN, WiFi 2x2 BGN+BT3.0, Liteon WB197 BGN+BT HMC (Z585) FRU 20002520

 

I'm surprised these are so hard to find, there must be tons knocking around computer recyclers.

Router:  Quotom-Q555G6-S05 running pfSense WiFi: Zyxel NWA210AX (~940Mbit peak)

Switches: Netgear MS510TXUP, Netgear MS510TXPP, Netgear GS110EMX
ISPs: Zen VDSL (~74Mbit) + VOXI 4G [Vodafone] (~120Mbit) + Three 5G (~500Mbit average)

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On 1/19/2022 at 7:27 AM, Donut417 said:

You dont need AC. Wireless N had dual band. You can see if any of those will work. While it wont be as fast as AC, it will work better than a 2.4 Ghz only device. 

Maybe I still don't understand everything perfectly. My WiFi card IS listed as N capable, but not dual band. Either way, it is capped at 72mbps hardware-wise, 2.4 GHz band only.

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On 1/19/2022 at 11:08 AM, Alex Atkin UK said:

Indeed, from what I have seen the last half-height Atheros WiFi adapter made for mini-PCIe was n based.  There seem to be plenty on eBay if you search for "atheros dual band mini pcie".  There also seem to be a fair few Broadcom based units which seems to be what that laptop came with.

If you want a decent none-Realtek USB adapter I suspect they are going to physically protrude from the laptop a lot further as all the small adapters are likely to be Realtek.

 

One thing worth considering though, if your laptop comes with a 1x1 card (which seems likely given the link rate) it "might" be worth upgrading it to a 2x2 whitelisted card.  Even if you're still stuck on 2.4Ghz it could be anywhere up to twice as fast.

 

I'm seeing:

WLAN, WiFi 2x2 BGN+BT4.0, Cbt BCM43227HMB BGN+BT HMC (Z585) FRU 20200045
WLAN, WiFi 2x2 BGN+BT3.0, Liteon WB197 BGN+BT HMC (Z585) FRU 20002520

 

I'm surprised these are so hard to find, there must be tons knocking around computer recyclers.

You are correct with those 2 FRU numbers and I have looked those up several times in the past. I did focus on the 2X2 cards figuring they were better than the 1X1's without actually knowing the terminology or standards, but again, I've been unable to find any. Years ago, I did locate the same card I have in this and have a "spare" just in case, but it's just as badly handicapped. In fact, as I think about it, the one IN this machine IS the back-up one because I installed it hoping the get better performance in case the original was semi-defective. It has the exact same slow-a$$ performance so I never swapped the original back in.

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41 minutes ago, Jebcovet said:

Maybe I still don't understand everything perfectly. My WiFi card IS listed as N capable, but not dual band. Either way, it is capped at 72mbps hardware-wise, 2.4 GHz band only.

Yes. A lot of cheaper shittier wireless N cards are ONLY 2.4 Ghz. BUT the standard is a dual band standard if you get the RIGHT hardware. I had dual band Wireless N  setup with my last router.  Worked pretty well till the router crapped out on me and I upgraded to AC. In my opinion 5Ghz was a game changer when it came to WiFi, because most of the time your experience is going to be worlds better, as long as your within range. 

I just want to sit back and watch the world burn. 

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On 1/12/2022 at 7:36 AM, Jebcovet said:

All 3 units obtained and tried are based on Realtek chipsets! I can't find anything else out there! Someone had suggested obtaining one based on a Broadcom chipset, but where? I really would love to find and test something compact that ISN'T Realtek based, but so far haven't found any. Again...... Suggestions???? Thanks, good people!

I will ask this once again in case it was missed or passed over. What makes and/or models of USB WiFi units out there are NOT Realtek chipset based? Then I will let this thread go if someone has a few answers for me!

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