Virgin Announced broadband speeds are doubling for free in February

Paul D

Well-known Member
I'm still confused with "bandwidth" versus "usage" terminology etc.

So does bandwidth mean usage per month?

If bandwidth is usage per month, it shouldn't effect actual use until the limit is reached. My old limit was 20gb, and i was then throttled.
If bandwidth is how many people are sharing the same connection (after my house) to the Internet provider, then yes that would have a real world effect. But isn't that called contention ratio.

I understand the traffic lanes analogy, but surely this would involve combing extra connections. Not the single one entering your house.
"Throughput" is the up/download speed regardless of how big the pipe is.

So unless Virgin use the extra coax cable in my house, i cannot see how they can make the pipe bigger.
So they have to increase the speed. But we still only see the results as mbps etc.

See, i am confused! :)
 
Last edited:

blue max

Distinguished Member
The thing is, I am on a 30mb connection and I regularly speed check it and get just over 30mb consistently. However, I still have youtube videos freeze and pause.

It needs everything to be up to speed to make any difference whatsoever. If a site can deliver a full 30mb and fill my download speed, then it would be perfect, but that's very unlikely to happen.

I wonder what the minimum acceptable speed that is required to stream a video from the likes of netflix? Or even a couple or more streams.

I think that caching is going to be more important, so the data stream is smoothed out. Plus compression being improved.

I don't like taking free lunches. They have a habit of costing you more long-term.

Graham
 

Matt_C

Distinguished Member
The more bandwidth VM release at their end affects how "fat" your pipe is at your end. Obviously, there is a physical restriction of the cables maximum transport rate, but if VM give us more bandwidth on terms of traffic flow from their end, we would see improvements on the domestic flow rate when using multiple devices simultaneously.

I don't profess to ACTUALLY know what I'm talking about though; I'm just regurgitating what I've read here and there ;)
 

Matt_C

Distinguished Member
Everyone gets YouTube videos' freeze. It's probably more so down to YouTubes servers than anything else, although of course computer speeds/specs play a role (even on a MacBook Pro, I find I get sticky videos from YT)

If you need to test a real-world scenario of your connection, just head over the Apple, Microsoft, Adobe, or the other big players and download something from them - the latest iTunes exe/dmg is always a good one to use - and see what speeds you get. With the three mentioned above, I always max out my connection at 1.12Mbps solidly throughout the entire download, so for 30Mb I'd expect you to see a solid 3.3Mbps download speed from them
 

blue max

Distinguished Member
Oh, bandwidth is the amount of data you can transmit/receive at a time. Download limits refer to the amount of data over a given period. If you download so many GB's over the course of a day, you may be throttled - your bandwidth will likely be reduced, so you can't download as fast.

traffic analogy - if you fill the highway with cars, after so many cars have passed a given point, there would be a speed limit imposed.

A fast connection would give you a speed limit greater than a lower one. But not necessarily let more traffic pass. They do generally allow more traffic to pass before imposing a speed limit though.
 

blue max

Distinguished Member
Everyone gets YouTube videos' freeze. It's probably more so down to YouTubes servers than anything else, although of course computer speeds/specs play a role (even on a MacBook Pro, I find I get sticky videos from YT)

If you need to test a real-world scenario of your connection, just head over the Apple, Microsoft, Adobe, or the other big players and download something from them - the latest iTunes exe/dmg is always a good one to use - and see what speeds you get. With the three mentioned above, I always max out my connection at 1.12Mbps solidly throughout the entire download, so for 30Mb I'd expect you to see a solid 3.3Mbps download speed from them

I was using that to demonstrate that faster bandwidth is not necessarily the panacea that it might at first appear. In real terms you are more limited by the supplier of the content. Much like owning a ferrari in a 30mph zone.
 

Badger0-0

Member
The thing is, I am on a 30mb connection and I regularly speed check it and get just over 30mb consistently. However, I still have youtube videos freeze and pause.

It needs everything to be up to speed to make any difference whatsoever. If a site can deliver a full 30mb and fill my download speed, then it would be perfect, but that's very unlikely to happen.

I wonder what the minimum acceptable speed that is required to stream a video from the likes of netflix? Or even a couple or more streams.

I think that caching is going to be more important, so the data stream is smoothed out. Plus compression being improved.

I don't like taking free lunches. They have a habit of costing you more long-term.

Graham

With Lovefilm it's 2Mb.
I'd expect Netflix to be similar.

The thing is, I am on a 30mb connection and I regularly speed check it and get just over 30mb consistently. However, I still have youtube videos freeze and pause.

As said, that's more likely a problem at the other end.
 

blue max

Distinguished Member
With Lovefilm it's 2Mb.
I'd expect Netflix to be similar.

As said, that's more likely a problem at the other end.

So quite a low requirement really.

And I wasn't asking for help, but using it as an example (thanks anyway).

My point was that all this download we are being given is likely to have very little impact for virgin Media or the vast majority of it's customers. But we sure will pay for it one way or another.
 

Badger0-0

Member
My point was that all this download we are being given is likely to have very little impact for virgin Media or the vast majority of it's customers.

I totally agree.
I see it just as keeping one up on BT.

At the moment you have to wonder what people actually want 120Mb for.
My first instinct is to say "loads of dodgy downloads" :rolleyes:
But of course, there will always be people who just like to have the fastest, which is fair enough :smashin:

But I'd have thought 30Mb would be ample to stream a full HD film and 50Mb would cover it with ease?
And we don't have full HD streaming yet, so I can't see the point, tbh.
 

carl.waring

Active Member
I wonder what the minimum acceptable speed that is required to stream a video from the likes of netflix? Or even a couple or more streams.
Just FYI, I can watch iPlayer, movies, etc., through my new Panasonic TV with just a small amount of buffering on my 10mb connection.
 

Paul D

Well-known Member
The more bandwidth VM release at their end affects how "fat" your pipe is at your end. Obviously, there is a physical restriction of the cables maximum transport rate, but if VM give us more bandwidth on terms of traffic flow from their end, we would see improvements on the domestic flow rate when using multiple devices simultaneously.

I don't profess to ACTUALLY know what I'm talking about though; I'm just regurgitating what I've read here and there ;)

Right, i get you now.
I thought you were refering to increasing the bandwidth at our end of things.
So Virgin have to increase their capacity, as increasing our speeds alone wouldn't have a good improvement during busy times.
Contention ratios either end have an impact, so Virgin has said they will increase capacity (at least double it) inline with the new upgraded speeds.

I haven't read it, but i believe they have also changed their traffic management policy.
Maybe this will help with certain streaming sites that i heard were being throttled/restricted.
 

Paul D

Well-known Member
I think Netflix requires 2.5mb, so you would assume a 3mb connection would be ok.
But maintaining a solid 2.5mb connection is the real trick.
Other users at home, peak times and contention ratios all play a part.
As is all the updating everything seems to needs these days. I seem to have to update my PS3 nearly every time i switch it on!
If you are border line, It wouldn't take much to see buffering when the wife is sat their updating her iPhone Apps.

I assume higher quality streaming will also come soon. Having said that, Netflix HD quality is very good with the content i've seen so far.
 

Matt_C

Distinguished Member
At the moment you have to wonder what people actually want 120Mb for.
My first instinct is to say "loads of dodgy downloads" :rolleyes:

Most people think that, but tend to forget that with most "dodgy downloads" you're downloading from another user, who's upload speeds aren't going to be anywhere near 120Mb. I can max a torrent at 1.12Mbps, but I don't think you could max one at 12.xMbps
 

Badger0-0

Member
Most people think that, but tend to forget that with most "dodgy downloads" you're downloading from another user, who's upload speeds aren't going to be anywhere near 120Mb. I can max a torrent at 1.12Mbps, but I don't think you could max one at 12.xMbps


Maybe, but perhaps you could do 10 torrents @ 1.1 Mbps?
Hence my " loads of dodgy downloads" reference.

But surely, if you were downloading every film going, you'd soon get through them all?

That's why I don't see the need for these sort of speeds yet.

It's all about "my cat's blacker than your cat", imo.
Don't get me wrong, I took up 20Mb straight away, when it was the fastest you could get :blush: :D, so I can understand that way of thinking.
 

Paul D

Well-known Member
I was getting 6.5mb BT ADSL.
I actually found that enough for day to day use.
What i was struggling with was the paltry 0.3mb upload speed.

Although i was tempted to go the whole hog when switching to Virgin, i did realise it would be just to have the fastest, and nothing to do with my needs.
So you could say it was odd that i didn't go with the 10mb pack then. (I ended up selecting 30mb)
I think i just wanted a good size jump in download speed to make the switch worth it.
I reasoned that 3mb upload was enough as well.

Although i am pleased with the recent doubling offer. I'm also in no rush to get it.
It will be a nice improvement, and when down/up loading make things happen quicker.
But i just hope they don't mess up the solid service i have at the minute.
 

Tate53

Active Member
Most people think that, but tend to forget that with most "dodgy downloads" you're downloading from another user, who's upload speeds aren't going to be anywhere near 120Mb. I can max a torrent at 1.12Mbps, but I don't think you could max one at 12.xMbps

If you are getting your 100's of "dodgy downloads" from torrents then you are doing it wrong ;)
 

Qactuar

Distinguished Member
If people want to talk about "dodgy downloads", I might advise that you do it elsewhere. If the thread discussion turns to piracy and obtaining of copyrighted material by "dodgy" means, posts will be moderated away.
 

Badger0-0

Member
Yeah, fair point TSF.

I'd like to think we're keeping it in general terms, in relation to speeds being necessary or not and not being specific, though :rolleyes:
But yes, I understand the need for a hint :smashin:
 

Qactuar

Distinguished Member
Yeah, fair point TSF.

I'd like to think we're keeping it in general terms, in relation to speeds being necessary or not and not being specific, though :rolleyes:

Torrents are a legitimate method of file distribution - the discussion of this process and method, is not the problem.

When people suggest that things are "dodgy" ... that's when we draw the line. What people do on their connections, is up to them, but we're consistent on the forum that such discussions are not welcome unless legal.

edit: another reason, is that each and every thread here is searchable and will show up in Google - we don't want to attract people for the "wrong" reasons :)
 

AFSTER

Member
if you are a 100mb, then you are just getting 20mb more

now is that it, or are they giving anything else extra like charging less or anything like that as the other speeds are increasing more
 

AFSTER

Member
i am a 50mb user, was thinking upgrading to 100mb. Now if they charging less then that meas i be like getting 120mb for price of 50mb!!!
 

A.I.

Well-known Member
Yeehaa!

Something for nothing - chalk me up for a large slice of that - thanks VM :love:

Downside - if there is one - is that I have to wait until July ;). With several laptops, an iPad', Apple Tv, airplay connections and a 'very' hungry hardcore gaming PC sookin' up available bandwidth I reckon I'll see quite an improvement.

Currently on 50mb and 120mb on the way - bring it on :thumbsup:

Can someone tell me will I need the dreaded and sometimes poorly trained VM engineer to fit a new modem or will I be ok with my current set up?
 

Badger0-0

Member
Yeehaa!

Something for nothing - chalk me up for a large slice of that - thanks VM :love:

Downside - if there is one - is that I have to wait until July ;). With several laptops, an iPad', Apple Tv, airplay connections and a 'very' hungry hardcore gaming PC sookin' up available bandwidth I reckon I'll see quite an improvement.

Currently on 50mb and 120mb on the way - bring it on :thumbsup:

Can someone tell me will I need the dreaded and sometimes poorly trained VM engineer to fit a new modem or will I be ok with my current set up?

I've not heard of any extra requirements needed to go from 50 to whatever :smashin:
 

A.I.

Well-known Member
I've not heard of any extra requirements needed to go from 50 to whatever :smashin:

Thanks Badger0-0. That's what I was hoping for.

BTW it's 120mb :p
 

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