Ethernet

Why is my internet buffering so much?

Episode 1385

Mike from Panama City, FL
Eero Routers

Mike is frustrated that his internet access is going through a lot of buffering, especially when he's streaming. Leo says a router needs to control his ethernet connection, not a modem. It's the one assigning IP addresses. Then he can put routers all over the house, but have them set in bridge mode so that they just pass the bandwidth along. Mike should try using different names for his routers, too. That way, he can join the nearest ones directly. Getting a mesh router is also be a good idea. They aren't cheap, but they definitely solve the problem.

How effective is powerline networking?

Episode 1382

Patrick (MacMan) from Indianapolis, IN
TP-Link AV2000 Powerline Adapter Kit

Is powerline networking a decent option these days? Leo says that it's improved a lot since it was introduced 20 years ago. It was horrible back then. Now it's much better. He won't get the full throughput, though – Only about 60%. And he'll have to be on the same fuse box. Leo also recommends the Plume routers because they have ethernet connections as well, so he could plug in there.

How long can I run an HDMI cable?

Episode 1376

Brian from Montebello, CA
HDMI Extender

Brian is building a new house and is putting his AV stuff in a closet, but he needs to run a long HDMI cable. How long could he go? Leo says he won't want to go longer than 3 feet. So going with an ethernet connection with baluns on either side is the way to go. It'll amplify the signal and he can go as long as he needs. It's also called an HDMI Extender. He can find one at Monoprice here.

Are mesh routers good for Ethernet connections?

Episode 1374

John from Santa Cruze, CA
Eero

John has an TPLink Archer C7 router, but he wants to know if a mesh router would be able to support adding ethernet to it. Leo says yes, it can. They're expensive, but the advantage is that he can connect to ethernet anywhere and it will handle it. John is wondering if he gets an access point to add onto his existing router, would he have two separate network names, and would he have to manually switch to the closest one? Leo says he can just name them the same, and it should work OK.

Should I put ethernet cable in my new home?

Episode 1365

Mike from Los Angeles, CA
Cat6 cable

Mike is thinking of putting cable inside his house, but he's not sure what to wire it with. Leo recommends going the extra step and putting conduit in. That way he can rewire the house when the technology advances without yanking out the drywall again. These days, he'll want at least Cat6, maybe 6a for now. He shouldn't go for fiber now, though. It's pretty expensive.