Recommended Wireless Network Adaptor

lukemurtagh1995

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Oct 7, 2017
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Hello all,

I am currently thinking of going with this gaming build:

CPU & Cooler: Intel i7-8700K overclocled to 4.8GHz & Noctua - NH-D15S 82.5 CFM CPU Cooler
Motherboard: Asus ROG Strix Z370-F Gaming ATX LGA1151 Motherboard
GPU: EVGA GeForce GTX 1080 8GB Superclocked Gaming ACX 3.0 Video Card
RAM: Corsair-Vengeance RGB Pro 16GB (2 x 8GB) DDR4-3200 Memory
SSD: Kingston-UV500 480GB 2.5'' SSD
HD: Seagate-Barracuda 2TB 3.5'' 7200RPM Internal HD
Case: Fractal Focus G case

I was wondering what wireless network adaptor would you all recommend? And should I go with a PCI or a USB one? I already have an Intel Band Dual Wireless-AC 3165. Would that work with my gaming rig? Thanks!
 
Before we make any recommendation for a WLAN adapter:
If you are planing to play a lot of online games e.g. CS:GO, WoW, Fortnite, PUBG, etc.
I would not use WLAN since the networking latency via WLAN is quite high even under ideal conditions.

Now, if you really want WLAN connection, I would rather pick a USB WLAN adapter instead of the PCI one because you can move the adapter to other PCs/laptops easier.
I have this one for one of my laptops.
https://www.amazon.de/1200Mbit-Dualband-Standards-WiFi-Empf%C3%A4nger-Wlan-Adapter/dp/B079LYDWCC/ref=sr_1_4?ie=UTF8&qid=1537864303&sr=8-4&keywords=wlan+adapter+pc
For my gaming PC, I am using PowerLAN connection to the main router.
 

lukemurtagh1995

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Thanks for the quick reply. I understand the problems of wireless. The problem is I cannot move my wireless adaptor as it isn't mine but my parents'. I am using wireless at the moment and I haven't really ever encountered any significant issues with lag. I don't play too many games on my PC that needs a good internet connection, but the one online game I do play a lot is SWTOR, and with my current wireless setup I get between 30 and 40ms of server lag. SWTOR is probably the only PC game I play online. I have other games which have online components, such as the Total War series, but I only ever play single player. Is it possible going for the USB dongle you suggested could give me worse wifi performance, or would it be a straight up improvement from my Intel Band?
 

lukemurtagh1995

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Ah, I see. So an antenna outside of my case will probably give me a better signal? And what would you recommend, the USB you linked or a PCI?
 
How did you manage to put that board in your pc, those are mostly used in laptops.

They do make adapter boards that plug into stadandard pci/e and you plug those type of cards into the adapter. Most also have antenna that extend the antenna outside the back of the case.

USB devices are a challenge to find quality ones. Most are designed for laptops and other portable devices where size and battery are more important than performance. Getting actual technical specs can be difficult for many of the devices coming from none brand name manufactures.
PCI devices tend to put out the legal maximum power and have larger antenna. You can also get models that have 3 and even 4 antenna which is how routers get those really high speed ratings. Problem is those antenna are located close to the back of the case.

The most expensive and option that tends to work the best is a PCI card that has long antenna cables that let you place the antenna on top of the case.

There is no easy answer to this question unfortunately.
 

lukemurtagh1995

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I didn't. I had someone else put my current rig together, as I didn't want to risk anything being damaged due to my inexperience. At the end of the day, all I'm looking for is something that will at the very least give me the same level of connectivity I have at the moment. More would be great, of course, but my wifi is very quick as it is.
 

lukemurtagh1995

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Could you send me another link for the first card you mentioned? It isn't working for me. The ASUS does indeed look nice.
 


The main difference between PCI WLAN card and the USB one is mainly only from the flexible installation part.
Both will do well under normal condition. The antenna placing is also important, putting it behind your PC might be a bad idea on some cases.
The one I posted is ok :)
If you want that ASUS adapter, it is also good.
 

lukemurtagh1995

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A bit of a noob question; how can I tell what is compatible with my router? I've checked my router's details and my computer says 802.11n. I quote that because I've seen that number on quite a few USB and PCI adaptors. Does that tell me its compatible?
 

lukemurtagh1995

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Thanks!
 
That is the nice thing about wifi following standards. 802.11n is a standard.

802.11n is a older standard with 802.11ac being newer. Luckily the newer and older stuff is all compatible.

In general it is no longer cost effective to buy 802.11n equipment. A lot of the 802.11ac stuff costs the same or in some cases less because 802.11n is not as popular. Now this is a money thing buying 802.11ac will not make it run faster unless both units run 802.11ac.

If you run a mix it will just slow down to the older equipment abilities.
 

lukemurtagh1995

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Good answers everyone, its helped me to narrow down my choices to a couple of items. I like both the USB mentioned earlier and the ASUS PCE one. I only have one question left, and its about the ASUS: since it needs a PCI-E slot, I am worried if I won't have any left when my entire build is taken into consideration. Here is my full build on PC Part Picker:

https://uk.pcpartpicker.com/list/KjJLbX

Do you reckon I'll have one PCI-E left for the adaptor? Since I've never built a P.C. before I have no idea if I will or not.
 

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