Looking for a DSL modem

I currently have ATT DSL in Michigan and using an old DSL modem. I am wondering if upgrading the modem would decrease my ping times. My speeds for the most part are ok but playing COD: Black Ops on my XBOX 360 sometimes gets some funky lag effects.

I currently have a Siemens SpeedStream 4100 ADSL modem connected to a D-Link 2310 router. Off the router, I have an Xbox 360, 2 PCs, and the last port connected to a TrendNet TPL-304E2K EOPL (Ethernet over Power Line). The EOPL was only added last weekend to give a network drop in my daughter’s room and the lag issue has been happening for sometime now.

The ADSL modem is only ADSL and not ADSL2/2+. I have had this modem for over 5 years.

During the week it is only my PC and my XBOX 360 uses the network. Like I said, speeds are not an issue, but I am getting 58-70ms ping times on pingtest.net.

So to boil it down:

  1. Would upgrading my modem improve ping times?
  2. What ADSL modem would you recommend?

I am looking for something under $40 like www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/item-details.asp?EdpNo=5536524&CatId=160 or www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/item-details.asp?EdpNo=4970955&CatId=160

I have thought about getting a gateway (modem+router) but have not seen any that specifically mentions gaming other than QoS. I have seen routers out there that allow you to give bandwidth priority to a specific device (D-Link calls their version GameFuel).

I am posting this in IMHO because I am looking for recommendations on if and what ADSL modem I should get. If appropriate, please move this to General Questions.

Thank you for your time.

Latency is a complicated issue. It’s particularly difficult an with Xbox, since some testing tools aren’t available. Your latency might be do to wireless signal interference (if it’s connected that way), a bad server (probably), a bad router, or network congestion.

The Speedstream 4100 is a decent modem. I’m going to assume you’re not on an ADSL2 profile, since your ISP probably would’ve set you up with such a modem. While your periodic lag is probably the result of lousy hosts, your general ping seems way too high. Before getting into whether a new modem is the solution to that, is your connection interleaved or fastpath?

You: Huh?

Basically, how Internet traffic works is that your computer sends little bits of information called packets to the ISP’s server. The ISP then forwards these off to the Internet and sends packets back to you. Conceptualize it like sending envelopes in the mail, only much faster. With a fastpath connection, each packet translates into one chuck of information or letter. This allows for information to be sent very rapidly, but requires a solid phone line where no information gets lost. An interleaved connection spreads out the information or letter across several packets to ensure that it reaches its destination. This redundancy is great for reliability, but it means that it takes two or three times longer for the information to reach its destination. That extra time is why interleaved DSL connections lag so badly in online games, where the rapid transmission is most noticeable.

Here’s how to determine your connection type:

Either connect your modem directly to your desktop and then set your browser’s address bar to http://192.168.254.254 or http://speedstream and hopefully you’ll get a screen that says “ADSL Connection: UP (xxxxxxx)” where xxxxxx is some jibberish and either fastpath or interleaved.

Alternatively, push Windows Key + R and then type cmd. Once the command window is open, type: tracert www.google.com. Copy the results and then paste it into this thread for interpretation. The first hop ping is usually a giveaway.

If your DSL is an interleaved connection, you’re going to lag hard. You can’t do anything about your latency except call up AT&T and ask for a lower sync rate that’ll support a fastpath connection. If they have a support forum or something, I’d post there instead of calling in. You need to get to the second or third level of support before you’ll reach someone who understands what this even is. Those people probably monitor that support forum.

Or maybe you selected a server for the pingtest that was rather far away, which is why it’s so high.

Thanks for the response. It gives me a few things to check. I will post them when I find out. As far as not being on a ADSL2 profile, the modem has moved with me twice so it may be that ADSL2 is now available, just never used it because of my modem.

I ran a tracert earlier and was getting 53-59ms per hop with 54 being the most prevalent. I plan to check the interleave/FastPath thing when I have an oppurtunity (not at home right now).