• New Patreon Tier and Early Access Content available. If you would like to support AVForums, we now have a new Patreon Tier which gives you access to selected news, reviews and articles before they are available to the public. Read more.

ADSL 8Mb about £16 – suggestions?

Waynej

Distinguished Member
I am looking to switch away from AOL Broadband, the monthly cost is £15.99 and I'm on their 2Mb service. I've been looking at a few providers this morning, and am trying to get a similar price with a better speed.

Virgin Media (Bundle 2) upto 8Mb £15.99
http://www.virgin.net/allyours/broadband/unlimitedandtalk/?buspart=buyat
Comes with a free wireless router, though a downside is a one-off connection fee of £30.

I don't have any particular issues with AOL as a provider. In fact the only problem I have had was with the Metal Gear Beta on the PS3, for some reason AOL UK was blocked from accessing and playing the game online. Whether that would apply when the full game is released, I'm not sure, but don't want to take the risk.

I usually host multiplayer games, and am getting a lot of complaints now about lag on the PC, I play Gears of War a fair bit, so am hoping to get a higher speed connection which should hopefully sort these issues.

As far as I am aware I can still only get ADSL in my area, and not cable. I am hoping to find a provider at a similar price to what I currently pay, £15.99 a month, and have a better connection too.

A FREE Wireless Router is not needed, but would be nice to have. I do have a Wired Netgear ADSL Router already. If possible a provider without a connection fee and even not being tied into a 12 month contract would be ideal.

I've mentioned Vigin Media above, though am not sure if they are any good. I would like some recommendations if possible?
 

Waynej

Distinguished Member
Just saw someone mention O2 Broadband on another thread on here, sounds more promising and a better speed than Virgin Broadband.

http://broadband.o2.co.uk/home/index.jsp

Think I'll go for O2 actually, can anyone else recommend O2, no probelms etc, or any other suggestions?

Edit: The o2 site also mentions that there is an additional £5 a month charge should I want a static IP. Do I NEED that for something?
 

Waynej

Distinguished Member
before buying into something you may not get have you done a speed check at your premises. This will give you an idea as what speed to expect. No good buying a 8Mb service if all you are going to get is 2Mb.
http://www.productsandservices.bt.com/consumerProducts/displayTopic.do?topicId=16541

Cheers for that link, it says I can get upto 8Mbps. That's kind fo dissapointing actually and I'm glad you posted that too, as I was eyeing up o2's 16Mb service.

I'm sure I checked on some other website before, and it said I could get upto 16MB, ah well, cheers for the link though, it's probably saed me alot of hassle.

Still, O2 looks good for the 8Mb at £12.50 per month, that's much better than the £15.99 I pay AOL for 2Mb! Can someone just confirm what a Static IP might be needed for? see it mentioned on the O2 website, if I want the Static IP it costs an extra £5 per month.

My main usage for the O2 Broadband would be for general internet use, and online multiplayer gaming on the PC, Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3. Are there any known issues with O2 and these online services? Hopefully not.
 

Andy98765

Distinguished Member
Static IP address is one that never changes. Example if your router powers down and then re-connects it will get a new IP address from your ISP. Static IP addresses are useful if you are going to web host on your computer.
Do take into account that not all ISP services are equal. Really look into what you are getting for your money.

Example I use BT Broadband and if I was to use everything that is available on my service i would get.
Upto 8Mb Unlimited
BT Broadband talk (I use this a lot for international calls)
BT Vision (Basically a free Freeview PVR + extras)
Norton Internet security, As there are 5 PC's in the house that saves me £150 per year.
Two laptops that get free internet access when out and about.
Wireless Broadband Hub with Broadband wireless phone.

That's what I get and use. So yes I pay a premium, but I get a lot back.

All I am saying is DO look at what you are getting for your money, and remember forget free calls etc these days as BT gives free evenings and weekend calls anyway, so nothing gained there.
 

Rygar

Prominent Member
Where to start!

1. Dont go with Virgin ADSL. You will regret it, especially on gaming.

2. That speed check does not take into account the higher speeds possible on ADSL2+ that O2 use so it can largely be ignored. Post your line stats from your router to get a good estimate of speed. Line checkers like the BT one posted only give a rough estimate based on exchange distance & are often out by a fair bit.

3. O2/BE/Sky LLU would all be good choices but are they available to you? Use the 1st link in my sig to find out.

4. If the above ISPs are not available to you I would suggest either Newnets Home M @ £18/month or ADSL24's Home 30 @ £20/month.

5. dont worry about static IPs. If you dont know what it is chances are you wont need one.
 

Jowl

Established Member
I can only echo whats been said.

I've just changed from Virgin ADSL to 02. While my O2 speeds are below 8mb, I get about 6.5 real speed and it's consistant.

With Virgin, I was lucky to 3mb and normally struggled along at 1.5 with frequent drop outs.
 

Waynej

Distinguished Member
Yeah, I think you gave me that link a couple of weeks back, as I've been pondering over switching away from AOL for some time. I don't think I can get anything great than 8Mb over ADSL on my line. I certainly remember that no LLU services were available.

I remember you Rygar also mentioning for me to post my line stats before, you said that these were good. I'll have a check again tonight as I'm about to pop out.

You've recommended some ISPs there that are above what I am paying now, £15.99, the O2 deal for the 8Mb is £12.50, so a couple of quid saving compared to what I pay for AOL 2Mb. Unless there is something I'm missing...

I can only echo whats been said.

I've just changed from Virgin ADSL to 02. While my O2 speeds are below 8mb, I get about 6.5 real speed and it's consistant.

With Virgin, I was lucky to 3mb and normally struggled along at 1.5 with frequent drop outs.

That's good to hear, as long as it can remain stable to support my exfessive online gaming, then that is the main thing that counts for me. I get far too many complaints when hosting on the PC, though funilly enough get no complaints on the 360 or PS3 online. This was also mentioned on here some time ago too, and I went through everything checking for any spyware etc that could be giving my PC a performance hit.

As it stands, making the switch from AOL to O2 seems like a win-win situation. It's cheaper and offers an up to 8Mb service, of which I'm hoping I get certainly much more than the 2Mb I get from AOL.
 

EndlessWaves

Distinguished Member
Generally with hosting online games it's not the downstream speed (2mb or 8mb) that's the limitation, it's the upstream speed (probably 256kbps on your current connection).

If you can get O2/Be then their uploads are great and they're definitely worth a try, although I don't know what the ping is like.

A static IP can be useful when hosting games, and multiple static IPs are useful so you don't have to allow games through your NAT but you can manage fine without it (as you have been doing if you don't know what it is) and £5 per month for a single one is rather a lot.
 

Waynej

Distinguished Member
Generally with hosting online games it's not the downstream speed (2mb or 8mb) that's the limitation, it's the upstream speed (probably 256kbps on your current connection).

If you can get O2/Be then their uploads are great and they're definitely worth a try, although I don't know what the ping is like.

A static IP can be useful when hosting games, and multiple static IPs are useful so you don't have to allow games through your NAT but you can manage fine without it (as you have been doing if you don't know what it is) and £5 per month for a single one is rather a lot.


Yeah, I have checked out Bethere, the service is not available in my area yet.

O2 seems like the way to go, I'm after the best deal for me and for what I can currently receive. O2 for upto 8Mb at £12.50 per month seems great, and offers upto 1.5Mb upstream to boot. Which is also better than what I currently receive on AOL.

I am confident at the moment that this is the best value and even the best possible connection I can currently receive on my line. If anyone thinks they know of a better deal, then by all means I am always out for a good deal, so let me know. ;)

EDIT -- this is sounding better and better! I just checked quidco out of curiosity, I can get £25 cashback for signing upto O2 Broadband. Now that is very nice indeed! :)
 

Waynej

Distinguished Member
One final question though, this is more regarding the specifics of switching. I just want to make sure I understand it correctly.

1. I am to ring AOL and request a MAC key, and must not cancel over the phone.

2. I am to input this MAC key somehwere on the O2 site when signing up for my chosen Broadband package.

3. I am to wait a few weeks for the switch over to take place, and expect minimal loss in connection.

So, is that the way it works then?

Obviously, I am expecting that the switch over is to be as painless as possible, the last thing I want is a bill from AOL and O2 in the same month...
 

Brausch

Banned
When escaping the clutches of AOL you'll find their custom coding stops you importing Favourite Places or email to another browser, you can just forward email and you can buy any one of several translators for favourite places but this is free http://mark0.net/soft-pfcex-e.html
 

EndlessWaves

Distinguished Member
Yeah, I have checked out Bethere, the service is not available in my area yet.

O2 and Be use the same network, if you can get O2 you should be able to get Be and vice versa. If they're giving you different results that's rather strange.

Steps 1 and 2 are fine, step 3 will happen like that if you're on standard ADSL from AOL, if you're on one of their LLU connections then I believe there may be some down time.
 

Jowl

Established Member
I was on Standard ADSL and the transition was painless. ANydown time there was was while I was at work so I don;t know about it! And I Wasn't at work long that day!

Not sure of the status of my Virgin account yet because I had the Broadband and Talk package. I've switched back to BT for my phone and need to keep a check on the Virgin account.
 

Rygar

Prominent Member
O2 and Be use the same network, if you can get O2 you should be able to get Be and vice versa. If they're giving you different results that's rather strange
They also provide a BT Wholesale based service called "access" on exchanges that they have not unbundled. Cant say what it's like but you can bet it wont be nearly as good as their LLU services. It's also dearer so I think the OP may be a little disappointed.
 

Waynej

Distinguished Member
They also provide a BT Wholesale based service called "access" on exchanges that they have not unbundled. Cant say what it's like but you can bet it wont be nearly as good as their LLU services. It's also dearer so I think the OP may be a little disappointed.

Meh, just when I think I have it all layed out ready, another curve ball comes in lol.

I just went to check on the o2 website, when i putmy postcode or tel no. in, I get this message:
Due to inactivity, your session has expired. Please continue with the order again. We are sorry for the inconvenience.

I'm not even ordering it, I've just clicked the thing which tells me if it is available in my area.

I'm going to guess it's not though?

Why is it such a pain to just find a normal ADSL service at a good price?

Just to confirm then, you are sure that O2 won't work in my area?

Someone check this link if you would please, to make sure, this is my postcode to use on the site: LL22 7HP
http://www.samknows.com/broadband/checker2.php
 

Rygar

Prominent Member
You can only get BT Wholesale based services on your exchange. Remember most ISPs use BT Wholesale, it doesnt mean you have to use BT Broadband. You just cant get the good LLU services from BE/O2/Sky nor can you get cable.

This is your exchange: http://www.samknows.com/broadband/exchange/WNAGE

The good news is you are very close to it so you will get 8Mb sync whoever you go with.
 

Waynej

Distinguished Member
You can only get BT Wholesale based services on your exchange. Remember most ISPs use BT Wholesale, it doesnt mean you have to use BT Broadband. You just cant get the good LLU services from BE/O2/Sky nor can you get cable.

This is your exchange: http://www.samknows.com/broadband/exchange/WNAGE

The good news is you are very close to it so you will get 8Mb sync whoever you go with.

OK, cheers for that. Does O2 only offer the LLU service though? I was planning on switching, as mentioned, from AOL to O2's up to 8Mb service, which is the O2 Home Broadband Standard at £12.50 per month.
See here: http://broadband.o2.co.uk/home/packages.jsp

Will this not work over ADSL or ADSL Max? Not that I know difference between the two, but on the samknows website I noticed it said I can get upto 2Mb on ADSL and upto 6.5MB on ADSL Max...

Sorry for all the questions, I really am just trying to cover everything before making a switch, I thought I had found that with O2.
 

Rygar

Prominent Member
To put it simply you are outside of their area. Look at the link you posted. See that column which says outside area? Well thats your only options with O2.
 

Waynej

Distinguished Member
To put it simply you are outside of their area. Look at the link you posted. See that column which says outside area? Well thats your only options with O2.

Ah, and so the search commences again. There seems to be no getting away from AOL, hopefully my local exchange gets these required updates at some point in the not too distant future.

I don't understand why it's so difficult to find a new broadband provider at a similar cost to AOL but can offer me upto 8Mbps. It looks as though they've all abandoned the old ADSL over BT's only exchange in my area. Sure, some will still offer me the service but put the price up considerably and in turn offer a service inferior to their cheaper option for those exchanges that can take it.
 

EndlessWaves

Distinguished Member
Sure, some will still offer me the service but put the price up considerably and in turn offer a service inferior to their cheaper option for those exchanges that can take it.

This is only the few ISPs who run their own networks, and they happen to be both cheap and good at the moment. The vast majority of ISPs do only sell standard ADSL and ADSLMax.

What sort of usage do you have per month? Most, if not all, of the 8mbps at £16 have a very restrictive usage cap of just a few gigabytes and I don't know if you'll find any offering 832kbps upload instead of the lower 448kbps at that price.
 

Jowl

Established Member
It might be worth trying the O2 website anyway - I went from 'not in your area' and then 'coming soon'. Sure enough, a week later they were in my exchange.

If you do sign up for someone else, might be worth trying for a monthly contract rather than 12 month
 

EndlessWaves

Distinguished Member
It might be worth trying the O2 website anyway - I went from 'not in your area' and then 'coming soon'. Sure enough, a week later they were in my exchange.

That link that Rygar posted should have accurate information, it seems to be scheduled months in advance so if there's no date there then O2/Be probably aren't going to install their equipment at Waynej's local exchange any time soon.

EDIT: PlusNet do a 'gamer's' package for £20 a month with a 15GB usage limit: http://www.plus.net/residential/broadband/bbyw_pro.shtml?WT.svl=bbywpro_ban

I've no idea how good it is, although for a gamer focused package the low 448kbps upload is disappointing.
 

Jowl

Established Member
I found that the 'samknows' link wasn't updated anyfaster than the O2 website for my exchange.

Although previously it has been very good at showing dates when LLU's were due.
 

Waynej

Distinguished Member
According to the samknows website, I can get a total download speed of up to 2Mb on ADSL, but can get up to 6.5Mb on ADSL Max.

So, how do I know which ISPs offer an ADSL Max service? It would be pointless to sign-up to some website for up to 8Mb broadband if I am only going to get 2Mb down, which is what I currently get on AOL.

Quite simply put, I want the best possible connection that I can currently receive on my line, and I want it for as cheap as I can possibly get.
 

The latest video from AVForums

CES 2023 Round Up: New TV Lineups for 2023 from LG, Samsung, Panasonic, Hisense & TCL
Subscribe to our YouTube channel

Full fat HDMI teeshirts

Support AVForums with Patreon

Top Bottom