Cable Internet vs. DSL Internet

so everyone's super excited right about

Internet service providers that are

offering fiber internet directly to the

home but let's face it most of us don't

live in an area where we can get a

hundred percent fiber and waiting around

for Google to show up and save the day

with an army of construction workers

might take a really long time so the

majority of us are still using either

cable or DSL to get online but is one

better than the other and how exactly

can internet data travel over a cable TV

wire or a phone line that only carried

56k dial-up not so long ago well

although people laughed at ted stevens

for calling the internet a series of

tubes it's actually pretty darn helpful

to picture the phone or a cable line

running to your house as a pipe the

phone conversation or Adam Sandler movie

that you're enjoying only takes up part

of that pipes space the space in the

pipe yes for continuing this analogy

that would otherwise be empty can be

filled with creamy delicious Internet

data packets which are kept separate

from phone calls or cable TV by simply

using a different frequency band similar

to how different frequencies on your FM

radio corresponds to entirely different

stations so in the case of DSL which

runs over a regular phone line phone

calls only take up a very tiny part of

the available bandwidth which explains

why DSL is so much faster than a dial-up

connection since old-school 56k internet

could only use the frequencies that were

dedicated to phone traffic to further

increase speeds for the average user

ISPs typically assign much more of the

available bandwidth to downstream

traffic rather than upstream as most

people download far more things than

they do upload which is why a DSL is a

common term that you'll see

in advertising with the a standing for

asymmetric as your upload and download

speeds will be usually very different of

course if you need lots of upstream

bandwidth such as if you're a video

production company you can actually get

symmetric DSM or s DSL okay Linus I get

it they both work by sending stuff down

an empty part of a pipe or copper wire

but how then are these two different

well one of the biggest distinctions is

one that you'll hear quite a bit from

companies that are trying to sell you

DSL and that is that your connection to

the ISP is your own bandwidth on an

incoming cable connection compared to

DSL is often shared by many other people

in your neighborhood

so if tons of people are streaming in 4k

on Netflix or downloading games off

steam at once your speed will often

suffer so that's great DSL is a

dedicated connection just for you but it

suffers from its own bottleneck the

farther you are physically located from

your internet service provider or one of

their stations the slower your DSL

connection will be since DSL isn't

compatible with the boosting equipment

that phone companies use to make sure

that you have a clear conversation from

3,000 miles away this is part of the

reason that cable connections are often

faster though DSL is often a cheaper

choice especially since contrary to a

popular misconception you don't

necessarily need phone service to get

DSL as many ISPs offer DSL over

something called a dry loop even if you

don't pay to make calls on a landline so

shop around a bit and keep those things

in mind in your quest to find the most

reliable ISP so your connection won't

suddenly drop out in the middle of a

twitch stream a crucial field goal kick

or counter-strike and chill and speaking

of actually I can't find a way to make

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