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Author Topic: Benefits of having AC WiFi on Laptops  (Read 1949 times)

MSI Notebook Administrator

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Benefits of having AC WiFi on Laptops
« on: June 20, 2017, 11:47:25 AM »

Most laptops now especially the gaming laptops utilize the AC Wireless Technology for better reception and speed. Here is another informative benefits of utilizing AC wireless network and how it performs respectively to your AC Modern AC Routers.

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https://www.forbes.com/sites/gordonkelly/2014/12/30/802-11ac-vs-802-11n-wifi-whats-the-difference/#68fd4f553957

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Dazzling users with specification sheets is nothing new: screen sizes, resolutions, megapixels, memory sizes and processor speeds are just a few, but one of the most neglected and important is WiFi and its latest and greatest standard 802.11ac.
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802.11ac was finalised in 2013 and you will find it in every major smartphone, laptop and desktop computer and smart television. It succeeds the equally-badly named 802.11n which has been around since 2007 and brings some major benefits.
The good news is by the end of this post you will not only understand 802.11ac, but also how to get the best from your existing wireless signal.
Compatibility - Everything Works Together
Ill start with the good news: chipsets featuring 802.11ac are fully backwards compatible with previous WiFi standards.

WiFi official logo and accepted standards




This means it works perfectly with 802.11a (introduced in 1999), 802.11b (2000), 802.11g (2003) and 802.11n (2007). The bad news is you will be limited to the performance of the older standard and will only get the full benefits of Wireless AC or AC WiFi, as it is also known, if you are connecting from 802.11ac to 802.11ac. That means an 802.11ac router and an 802.11ac device.
So that out the way, what are the benefits?






802.aac theoretical speeds versus 802.11n and 802.11g - image credit Novaknetworx

802.11ac vs 802.11n Speed
You may have noticed there has been a six year gap between 802.11n and 802.11ac. This is an eternity in technology terms and the big benefit 802.11ac brings from its time in development is speed.
WiFi is always promoted using theoretical speeds and by this standard 802.11ac is capable of 1300 megabits per second (Mbps) which is the equivalent of 162.5 megabytes per second (MBps). This is 3x faster than the typical 450Mbps speed attributed to 802.11n.
The problem is these speeds are garbage. In the real world no-one ever gets close to theoretical speeds and the fastest 802.11ac real world speeds recorded in testing are around 720Mbps (90MBps). By contrast 802.11n tops out at about 240Mbps (30MBps) so the 3x estimate is still true, just much lower.
But there is one more crucial part to understand for your real world experience: antennas.
Long term 802.11ac has the headroom to support up to eight antennas each running at over 400Mbps each, but the fastest router to date only has four antennas. The reason is because antennas add cost and take up space and the smaller the device the less antennas they can fit so it becomes pointless adding more to a router. Typically:

This is another bottleneck. If your glorious four antenna 802.11ac router is connecting to your single antenna 802.11ac smartphone then 400Mbps (50Mbps) is your theoretical maximum and 200Mbps (25MBps) is the more realistic one.
This is something of a downer, but these speeds are still faster than nearly all home broadband connections and only become a limitation for transferring files wirelessly between devices on your local network (say laptop to laptop or desktop to NAS).
Furthermore 802.11n only supports up to four antennas at roughly 100Mbps (12.5MBps) each so when you do the maths for devices using 802.11n antennas the gap begins to widen. Especially when it comes to the next big benefit of 802.11ac

Beamforming 'Smart WiFi' - image credit Netgear

802.11ac vs 802.11n Range
So AC WiFi is much faster, but its peak speeds are not really the selling point. Its speeds at long range are.
First the bad news: 802.11ac WiFi doesnt really reach any further than 802.11n WiFi. In fact 802.11ac uses the 5GHz band while 802.11n uses 5GHz and 2.4GHz. Higher bands are faster but lower bands travel further.
That said my experience testing both standards finds very little difference in signal strength between 802.11ac over 5GHz and 802.11n over 5GHz and 2.4GHz.
Why? Firstly because 2.4GHz is used for everything from cordless home phones to microwaves and 5GHz remains relatively interference free for a cleaner signal.
The second key factor is Beamforming. Typically wireless signal is simply thrown out from your router equally in all directions, like ripples when throwing a stone into a pond. This is why you should place your router as close to the centre of your home or office and as high up as possible.
Beamforming is different. It is built into the 802.11ac specification and is smart signal which detects where connected devices are and increases signal strength specifically in their direction. Yes it is still a good idea to position your router centrally, but it helps make it less vital.
All this means the performance of 802.11ac is maintained far better at long range than 802.11n. Peak performance may be tripled, but at range 5-10x the speed benefits are not unusual and this is where 802.11ac comes into its own. 


Technology is a wonderful thing. 12 months ago 802.11ac equipment was hard to find and extremely expensive. Now it is built into every premium smartphone, tablet, laptop and smart TV and is increasingly found in midrange devices as well.
The reason for this is threefold. Firstly there are obvious performance benefits, particularly for single antenna devices like smartphones. Secondly it is more battery efficient because WiFi needs to be active for less time when data transfers can complete more quickly. Thirdly with proliferation comes scales of economy which bring down the price.
One caveat: make sure you find officially certified devices (using the official WiFi logo). Some devices are still use Draft 802.11ac and while they tend to work fine and should eventually update, it isnt guaranteed.
When it comes to pricing most devices you buy have already integrated 802.11ac so you wont be consciously paying more for it.
Where there is still a jump in price, however, is routers. Wireless AC routers still tend to have a 20-50% premium (depending on model), but as ageing routers risk becoming the speed and range bottleneck for every Internet connected item in your home these much neglected devices are worth a little more investment.
« Last Edit: June 20, 2017, 11:49:36 AM by MSI Notebook Administrator »
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-J41RU5-

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Re: Benefits of having AC WiFi on Laptops
« Reply #1 on: June 20, 2017, 12:23:07 PM »

Sana bumilis ang internet dito sa Pilipinas! >:(

Sayang ang mga ganitong technology
kung nabo-bottleneck lang naman sa bilis ng internet.
Pero props to MSI for always including the
latest and cutting edge technology into their computers!
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johnpaulolvega

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Re: Benefits of having AC WiFi on Laptops
« Reply #2 on: June 20, 2017, 05:42:37 PM »

Sobrang makakatulong tong impormasyon, maraming salamat s pag bahagi nito sa amin MSI!
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eddylu8626

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Re: Benefits of having AC WiFi on Laptops
« Reply #3 on: June 21, 2017, 11:01:54 AM »

I think I need to buy a new device
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kenryanlee

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Re: Benefits of having AC WiFi on Laptops
« Reply #4 on: June 21, 2017, 12:00:52 PM »

Kailangan ko na lang ng mabilis na internet....
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davidchang8218

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Re: Benefits of having AC WiFi on Laptops
« Reply #5 on: June 21, 2017, 01:22:19 PM »

Wow, very useful and educational!
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roroyasolong

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Re: Benefits of having AC WiFi on Laptops
« Reply #6 on: June 22, 2017, 09:21:50 PM »

what's the wifi password here?

 hehehe
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