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TP-LINK N600 Wireless N Dual Band Gigabit Router w/ 2x USB Ports (TL-WDR3600) EXPIRED

Discombobulated 14,749 97,755 February 19, 2013 at 12:00 AM in Mail In Rebate (8) More Newegg Deals
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Promoted 02-19-2013 by brisar at 07:17 AM View Original Post
Newegg.com has TP-LINK N600 Wireless N Dual Band Gigabit Router w/ 2x USB Ports (TL-WDR3600) for $68.99 - $15 w/ promo code EMCXVWL24 - $15 rebate = $38.99 with free shipping. Thanks Discombobulated

Price Research: Our research indicates that this TP-LINK TL-WDR3600 N600 Wireless Dual Band Gigabit Router w/ 2x USB Ports is $27 lower (41% savings) than the next best available price from a reputable merchant with prices starting from $66. - brisar
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Edited February 19, 2013 at 01:57 AM by Discombobulated
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Community Wiki

Last Edited by The Debater March 20, 2013 at 03:33 PM
Update to latest stock firmware if not planning to use a 3rd party firmware (OpenWrt, DD-WRT). The latest stock version includes several important stability fixes:
http://www.tp-link.us/support/dow...version=V1

Note: flashing to a 3rd party firmware will void your warranty. Proceed with caution. If you follow the directions carefully, you will be fine.


Note also (unsupported 3rd party feature): 3rd party firmware does not currently support the hardware NAT feature of this router and probably will not any time soon. Flashing back to stock will restore this functionality.



This router is the cheapest router to get OpenWRT's newest branch, Attitude adjustment which implements CoDEL a new parameterless bufferbloat solution.

Bufferbloat = latency lag when network approaches full usage.

Example: VoIP, VidChat, gaming, latency sensitive apps start stuttering once that other dude in your house starts his NetFlix streaming. You cry and stop doing what you were doing until he's done. OR you can buy this and setup codel and be happy. ^^

Installing OpenWRT isn't necessarily quite as easy but it's straightforward. If you've installed dd-wrt or Tomato, I have confidence in you that you can install OpenWRT Wink
If you know someone who would probably struggle putting dd-wrt/tomato on a router... don't have them install this. They might mess it up.

Got mine and got OpenWRT installed, so far so good....

Here's what I did (Disclaimer, if you are technically challenged I do not suggest doing this or find the beta builds of DDWRT or Gargoyle):

Original link stopped working here's a new link, if it no longer works see below.
http://downloads.openwrt.org/atti...actory.bin

If that still doesn't work here's the path from the openwrt downloads page.
Attitude adjustment...
12.09-rc1...
Ar71xx...
Generic...
Openwrt-ar71xx-generic-tl-wdr3600-v1-squashfs-factory.bin

1.) Connect an ethernet cable to the LAN side of the router, navigate to 192.168.1.1 (It may be 192.168.0.1). Username is "admin" password is "admin".
2.) Rename your OpenWRT image to "factory.bin". Navigate to the firmware upgrade page and update the firmware with your OpenWRT image.
3.) Once upgrade is done, manually set your computer's IP to 192.168.1.X (whatever you want on 1.X subnet). this step wasn't necessary for me, I got an IP via DHCP right after flashing just fine
4.) Use Putty or some other program to telnet into 192.168.1.1. Type "passwd" at command prompt and set a root password. Type "exit" and get out of the telnet session.
5.) Connect an ethernet cable from your modem to the WAN (Internet) side of the router. The blue port. The router needs internet access for the next step.
5.) Reopen Putty and do an SSH session to the same IP, login as root with your new password. Type "opkg update" and return. Type "opkg install luci" and return. To enable Luci to start on boot, type "/etc/init.d/uhttpd enable" and return and then type "/etc/init.d/uhttpd start" and return. I would also install the Luci qos module, type "opkg install luci-app-qos" and return.
6.) You can now login to Luci via an HTTP interface at 192.168.1.1. Good luck with the rest, just make sure you enable your wifi interfaces and configure them.

NOTE: It has been widely reported that LuCi is already installed and running after the install of OpenWRT. After you do the initial upgrade try navigating to 192.168.1.1 to see if the LuCI interface is up and running. If it is not then you should run through the steps listed above.

7.) Optionally, you may change to a more user friendly interface by installing the bootstrap theme (now available from the software installation function built into the web interface).
Info about bootstrap theme: http://nut-bolt.nl/2012/openwrt-b...-for-luci/
To install: System --> Software --> search for bootstrap in available package --> click install
To activate theme go to: System ---> Language and Style ---> Design ---> Bootstrap Smilie

More info, including instructions for setting up Codel on OpenWrt: https://gist.github.com/petedoyle/4129668. (he does it in a bit more complicated way than necessary, if anyone has easier instructions, please update).
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Gargoyle install: (i.e. the easy way)
If you want the simple method and are ok with a simplified interface then download the gargoyle image here http://www.gargoyle-router.com/do...actory.bin and do the upgrade with that. It already has the GUI installed and running so you can go directly to 192.168.1.1.

Although very functional, Gargoyle is kind of ugly by default, so if you care about that sort of thing, install a theme Smilie

NOTE: Gargoyle does not have all the options that LuCi does, it was designed this way. It has QOS and Codel installed by default. If you don't know why you want all the options available in Luci, then you probably don't need them.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Here are some other helpful links that I used: bimologist
DDNS Client: http://wiki.openwrt.org/doc/howto...using.luci
OpenVPN Setup: http://wiki.openwrt.org/doc/howto/vpn.openvpn
Guest WLan: http://wiki.openwrt.org/doc/recipes/guest-wlan (non Luci) (I could not get the Luci directions to work)
Guest WLAN via Luci (does not work for some): https://forum.openwrt.org/viewtopic.php?id=34092

Instructions for setting up QoS and CoDel for OpenWRT peeps:

Pulled from OpenWRT forums:
Quote :
First of all, the values to enter in the qos configuration are your maximal net bandwidth minus some headroom that qos needs to be effective (I hink this is no longer true for the post-backfire codel-based qos). Especially the upload value needs to be lower than the maximum you observed empirically.
I have a "up to" 16Mbit / 1Mbit line. The observed actual net rates are for me about 12Mbit and 950 kbit respectively. I hence entered this in the qos config
option download 12000
option upload 800
Since you cannot control downstream in a meaningful manner I left it at 12000, but upstream needs the headroom and through testing with simultaneous saturating upload traffic and pings I settled on 800.

I also have this stanza
onfig classify
option target "Express"
option ports "22,5190,5060,5222,19295,19301-19310
where the 19xxx ports are for Google voice and video chats, 5060 is supposed to be VoIP, but I have a hunch that this is only the port for negotiation not payload data. 5222 is XMPP instant messaging.
I'm not sure you can successfully prioritize Skype because Skype hides on port 80 and port 433, which are the usual HTTP(S) ports.
Also see, https://gist.github.com/petedoyle/4129668

To add a USB flash-drive to expand the capacity of your router, follow: http://klseet.com/index.php/tl-mr...ap-extroot

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Joined Jun 2003
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#286
Quote from drawz View Post :
Since you're playing in WMC7, I assume the playback is occuring on the PC. This almost sounds like the 24fps vs 23.9xx bug that some video cards/drivers have issues with. I would also wonder if you have hardware accelerated video decoding in use. If so, can your GPU handle those bit rates. If using software decode, is your CPU fast enough?

Somewhere within this statement may lie my issue. I recall hearing about that 24fps issue a LONG time ago but at the time I wasn't having issues (was downloading known AVI files that worked fine aside from the inability to FFWD issue I talked about) so I didn't put too much research into it. I'll check into that now. Running a Gateway with whatever factory drivers it came with.


If by hardware accelerated video you mean within Adobe I know that I disabled this when watching a YouTube video because it created all sorts of issues streaming YouTube. If there's a setting somewhere else to disable this globally let me know and I'll check it out. But I'm pretty sure this is what you're talking about and I will double check to make sure that an update or something didn't enable it again. But, along these lines, my resources appear to be WELL under what I could consider stressed so I'm not thinking the CPU is the culprit.


For discussion purposes this is the machine [newegg.com] I'm running with upgrades to the RAM (Mushkin 12gb 3x4gb) and obviously larger HDDs and what not. I also have a gig NIC which is an Intel card. I started with a cheap-o and had issues with connection speeds which I found was rather common after the fact. After I put the Intel one things seemed to be just fine so I ruled this out but perhaps it's my issue again.
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Last edited by OstrichSak February 21, 2013 at 03:22 PM
Joined Jan 2004
Buying only what I need!
521 Posts
216 Reputation
#287
Quote from OstrichSak View Post :
Somewhere within this statement may lie my issue. I recall hearing about that 24fps issue a LONG time ago but at the time I wasn't having issues (was downloading known AVI files that worked fine aside from the inability to FFWD issue I talked about) so I didn't put too much research into it. I'll check into that now. Running a Gateway with whatever factory drivers it came with.


If by hardware accelerated video you mean within Adobe I know that I disabled this when watching a YouTube video because it created all sorts of issues streaming YouTube. If there's a setting somewhere else to disable this globally let me know and I'll check it out. But I'm pretty sure this is what you're talking about and I will double check to make sure that an update or something didn't enable it again. But, along these lines, my resources appear to be WELL under what I could consider stressed so I'm not thinking the CPU is the culprit.


For discussion purposes this is the machine [newegg.com] I'm running with upgrades to the RAM (Mushkin 12gb 3x4gb) and obviously larger HDDs and what not. I also have a gig NIC which is an Intel card. I started with a cheap-o and had issues with connection speeds which I found was rather common after the fact. After I put the Intel one things seemed to be just fine so I ruled this out but perhaps it's my issue again.
First thing, update your drivers. Helps keep your PC run at its best. I seriously doubt the GPU is involved in any of this mess because you aren't decoding at the PC (I could be wrong) but it sounds like you are merely sharing the files which get decoded on the other end. But so you don't waste your time, no, he wasn't referring to anything Adobe-related.

IF you are encoding at the PC (this is what TVersity does) then your processor might be a little on the slow side for full 1080p. Yes its great that is a quad core.... but if the software doesn't make use of multiple cores, then you'll never get better than 25% of what the proc is capable of. 2.5 ghz on a Core 2, that's a decent proc, but for 1080p I'd want a faster or newer proc (newer procs are typically more efficient at the same clock speed). All of this said, I just looked at the Gateway link. The PC has an integrated GPU, Intel GMA X4500. Your friend with a similar setup, I'd find out what GPU he's using. If the GPU could help you, this one is not.

You aren't having 24 vs 23.976 compatibility issues. None of your videos are 24, the video world does not ever operate at 24 fps.

Can you tell us what hard drive you upgraded to?
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Joined Jan 2004
Buying only what I need!
521 Posts
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#288
Since I'm using this as an AP, I am putting it in the middle of the house up on a wall. Since I don't want the power brick around, I'm using "science-fair" PoE. I had these [amazon.com] for my WRT54GL and luckily the fit this unit to. A few things to keep in mind, if you use just 1 ethernet cable you won't get a gigabit connection since the power adapter uses 2 of the 8 wires. You need all 8 for gigabit (cat5e or better) and just 4 of the wires (cat5) for 100base.

I'm sure most won't be interested since they'll want to use this as their switch as well. But just in case I thought I'd share. Also, my buddy's new house was built similar to mine with all the network cables run to one area. But they forgot to install an outlet near the cables. So in an instance like that, you could pipe your power in from else where.
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#289
They just came back into stock at Newegg - code/rebate is still active.
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#290
Back in stock. Was able to pick up one.
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#291
Sorry for a stupid question but I received the router today and just tried to set it up but am getting an error that DNS isn't responding. Ive got Comcast service and a Motorola sb6141 modem. I've tried the following and keeping getting the same error:

1. Cloning the Mac id with the PC
2. Not closing the Mac id with the PC
3. Using the modem Mac id
4. Both security types that require a password
5. Configuring in the web
6. Configuring with the disc
7. I've ensured dhcp is enabled...I am getting a media disconnected message in the ipconfig command

Sorry for typos I am on my phone
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Joined Mar 2004
L11: Monkey's Apprentice
17,184 Posts
2,785 Reputation
#292
Quote from Defying_Odds View Post :
Sorry for a stupid question but I received the router today and just tried to set it up but am getting an error that DNS isn't responding. Ive got Comcast service and a Motorola sb6141 modem. I've tried the following and keeping getting the same error:

1. Cloning the Mac id with the PC
2. Not closing the Mac id with the PC
3. Using the modem Mac id
4. Both security types that require a password
5. Configuring in the web
6. Configuring with the disc
7. I've ensured dhcp is enabled...I am getting a media disconnected message in the ipconfig command

Sorry for typos I am on my phone
Is the router getting a DNS address? Worst case just manually set your DNS info in the router. You can use Google's DNS servers, 8.8.8.8 and 4.4.4.4, under your LAN/DHCP config page.

If your system is saying media disconnected, that's not a DNS problem, that's a connection problem or an adaptor problem.
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Joined Jun 2003
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#293
Quote from get2Brad View Post :
First thing, update your drivers. Helps keep your PC run at its best. I seriously doubt the GPU is involved in any of this mess because you aren't decoding at the PC (I could be wrong) but it sounds like you are merely sharing the files which get decoded on the other end. But so you don't waste your time, no, he wasn't referring to anything Adobe-related.
Good idea. My video drivers were out of date so I went ahead and found the latest drivers from the manufacturer and installed them. I rebooted and double checked to make sure they showed the most current and they did. Went back to one of my front-end devices and attempted to stream one of the problem files. The file in question happens to be an x264 720p version of The Hunger Games which is around 10gb in filesize. I know it's a longer movie but given the file size it's rather larger IMO so I'm not sure on the compression used. I don't think that the PC is doing any decoding either.


As for the hardware acceleration option I double checked and it was indeed enabled again after several updates. I disabled it but being as how it's for Adobe Flash I doubt it has any bearing on this situation. I know I had a laptop in the past that simply wouldn't play YouTube for crap when it was enabled.

Quote from get2Brad View Post :
IF you are encoding at the PC (this is what TVersity does) then your processor might be a little on the slow side for full 1080p. Yes its great that is a quad core.... but if the software doesn't make use of multiple cores, then you'll never get better than 25% of what the proc is capable of. 2.5 ghz on a Core 2, that's a decent proc, but for 1080p I'd want a faster or newer proc (newer procs are typically more efficient at the same clock speed). All of this said, I just looked at the Gateway link. The PC has an integrated GPU, Intel GMA X4500. Your friend with a similar setup, I'd find out what GPU he's using. If the GPU could help you, this one is not.
I know that when I used to transcode on the fly with TVersity the PC was under tremendous resource loads. This was several years and a couple PCs ago so at the the hardware was just barely able to handle this task. Most of the files I acquire are 720p even though I have 1080p display devices simply to keep things trim and lean from a download and storage aspect. Also, until I get this situation resolved at 720p there's no sense at all taking on 1080p. I know that my processor is a little bit dated by today's standards but it's not terribly bad. I did attempt to stream after updating my video drivers and when the Xbox started choking (read: video stutter and even audio pausing in this case) and I went to my PC and noticed that a couple of my cores were pretty high in percentage used. After all this it might just be my processor after all. I had never noticed this before and in the past when I checked all four were under 20% use and generally under 10% for the most part. When I say my buddy has the same setup I didn't mean the PC. He has a newer processor so it could be that this is indeed what the issue is after all. Whenever I checked in the past and saw my CPU was running so low I just assumed it wasn't the problem.

Quote from get2Brad View Post :
You aren't having 24 vs 23.976 compatibility issues. None of your videos are 24, the video world does not ever operate at 24 fps.
Yeah, it seems like I decided this a while back but wasn't sure why I had drawn the conclusion that I had. I thought I would look into it again.

Quote from get2Brad View Post :
Can you tell us what hard drive you upgraded to?



The primary HDD on that PC is just a basic 1TB HDD with the usual specs (SATA, 7200rpm, etc.) and the secondary is also a basic 2TB HDD but I seem to recall it being a 5400rpm drive. I don't have an SSD in this particular machine because for the purpose it's being used it's not necessary.
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#294
Quote from OstrichSak View Post :
Somewhere within this statement may lie my issue. I recall hearing about that 24fps issue a LONG time ago but at the time I wasn't having issues (was downloading known AVI files that worked fine aside from the inability to FFWD issue I talked about) so I didn't put too much research into it. I'll check into that now. Running a Gateway with whatever factory drivers it came with.


If by hardware accelerated video you mean within Adobe I know that I disabled this when watching a YouTube video because it created all sorts of issues streaming YouTube. If there's a setting somewhere else to disable this globally let me know and I'll check it out. But I'm pretty sure this is what you're talking about and I will double check to make sure that an update or something didn't enable it again. But, along these lines, my resources appear to be WELL under what I could consider stressed so I'm not thinking the CPU is the culprit.


For discussion purposes this is the machine [newegg.com] I'm running with upgrades to the RAM (Mushkin 12gb 3x4gb) and obviously larger HDDs and what not. I also have a gig NIC which is an Intel card. I started with a cheap-o and had issues with connection speeds which I found was rather common after the fact. After I put the Intel one things seemed to be just fine so I ruled this out but perhaps it's my issue again.
Just wondering if you have tried XBMC with DXVA2 (Hardware Video Acceleration) turned on in the Video Settings to play video? XBMC figures out all the codec stuff and let's you play most stuff without having to install extra codecs. Sometimes if it isn't the right codec it will play poorly.
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#295
Quote from yazyazoo View Post :
Just wondering if you have tried XBMC with DXVA2 (Hardware Video Acceleration) turned on in the Video Settings to play video? XBMC figures out all the codec stuff and let's you play most stuff without having to install extra codecs. Sometimes if it isn't the right codec it will play poorly.

I used XBMC in the past on some legacy Xboxes but I prefer to stick with WMC on this for ease of use for wife, company, house sitters, burglars and what not.
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#296
"Houston, we've got a problem"....So i got the router and was excited to try it out. First thing I did was update the stock firmware to the latest version. It's all frustration from there. The router actually has less range than my 3 years old Netgear WNDR3500. What's really disappointing is that the speed is slower than my Netgear router! Webpages load slower, Youtube videos were crawling. I've tried dual bands, single band, different security selections and combination. WEP, while useless do make increase the speed a bit but STILL slower than my 3 years old Netgear 3500! I even convert the 3500 into an access point hoping that I would get better speed but to no avail. The range got better but the speed is still the same. Needless to say, im frustrated with this router and very disappointed after looking at the speedtest,net results. Anyone have any tips to increase the speed on this on router??? If not, I think it's going back. I can get free shipping back to Newegg using ShopRunner, right? Is there going to be a re-stocking fee? Thanks all!
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#297
Quote from boltman2007 View Post :
Quote from drawz View Post :
There is basic QoS, called bandwidth control, according to Smallnetbuilder. OpenWrt does a much better job.
QoS on SOHO routers is simply unnecessary and likely to degrade performance overall.

It is effectively taking away rather than adding and oinly used when network is saturated. Something has to give its not magic.

I'm amazed how much people buy into it (blindly) as a must have feature for home networks.
Like another poster said just becuse you can does not mean you should...especially if you have no real idea if you need it.

Just install this router and be happy... change the username/password turn off WPS...done
QoS is very important if you run real time applications where latency is critical, such as VOIP, gaming, and even web browsing can be impacted when a large portion of your bandwidth is being consumed by something else (streaming or other high speed download)

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#298
Quote from boltman2007 View Post :
Quote from sklar View Post :
I'd have to disagree. SOME routers experience a drop in throughput when employing QOS, because the router has to inspect every packet. In most high end routers in a home environment, unless you're doing live backups from many machines and a ton of multiple HD video streaming, that little performance cut off the top doesn't matter.

Some routers have no drop in throughput when using QOS. But most of those don't cost $40.

In my household, without QOS if someone is doing a VOIP or skype session, all sorts of stuff stops working. If my son is skyping in HD, the ooma voip phone quality sucks and sometimes it wont even ring. If we're doing multiple hd video streams, the phone call quality stinks. But with a set of QOS rules that put the voip box #1, skype #2, and other video streaming #3 and everything else after that...it all works beautifully no matter whats going on.

With THIS router QoS is not going to help and may hurt overall performance.

QoS is used in Enterprise environments successfully for VOIP but again those are Enterprise class routers. NOT SOHO

I think people are misled about what some of these third party firmware features actually do in real life.
At the very least we already see from various posters the "headaches" 3rd party firmware can cause.
That is simply not true. QoS works fine on this router, at least with OpenWrt (especially with codel).

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Quote from boltman2007 View Post :
Quote from dealgeek007 View Post :
sklar is correct.
One of the big reasons why open source firmwares like Openwrt are so popular is because they give a SOHO (normal cheap) router capabilities of an enterprise class router.
So you are saying managing outbound packets makes a huge difference... I'm skeptical. Its bandwidth you need not "tricks" we all no nothing actually happens to inbound packets unless you have a better router. Its again a placebo effect. The router is not the choke point your ISP is.
So it sounds like you haven't actually tried it. It really does work.

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Last edited by drawz February 21, 2013 at 08:40 PM
#299
Quote from OstrichSak View Post :
Quote from get2Brad View Post :
First thing, update your drivers. Helps keep your PC run at its best. I seriously doubt the GPU is involved in any of this mess because you aren't decoding at the PC (I could be wrong) but it sounds like you are merely sharing the files which get decoded on the other end. But so you don't waste your time, no, he wasn't referring to anything Adobe-related.
Good idea. My video drivers were out of date so I went ahead and found the latest drivers from the manufacturer and installed them. I rebooted and double checked to make sure they showed the most current and they did. Went back to one of my front-end devices and attempted to stream one of the problem files. The file in question happens to be an x264 720p version of The Hunger Games which is around 10gb in filesize. I know it's a longer movie but given the file size it's rather larger IMO so I'm not sure on the compression used. I don't think that the PC is doing any decoding either.


As for the hardware acceleration option I double checked and it was indeed enabled again after several updates. I disabled it but being as how it's for Adobe Flash I doubt it has any bearing on this situation. I know I had a laptop in the past that simply wouldn't play YouTube for crap when it was enabled.

Quote from get2Brad View Post :
IF you are encoding at the PC (this is what TVersity does) then your processor might be a little on the slow side for full 1080p. Yes its great that is a quad core.... but if the software doesn't make use of multiple cores, then you'll never get better than 25% of what the proc is capable of. 2.5 ghz on a Core 2, that's a decent proc, but for 1080p I'd want a faster or newer proc (newer procs are typically more efficient at the same clock speed). All of this said, I just looked at the Gateway link. The PC has an integrated GPU, Intel GMA X4500. Your friend with a similar setup, I'd find out what GPU he's using. If the GPU could help you, this one is not.
I know that when I used to transcode on the fly with TVersity the PC was under tremendous resource loads. This was several years and a couple PCs ago so at the the hardware was just barely able to handle this task. Most of the files I acquire are 720p even though I have 1080p display devices simply to keep things trim and lean from a download and storage aspect. Also, until I get this situation resolved at 720p there's no sense at all taking on 1080p. I know that my processor is a little bit dated by today's standards but it's not terribly bad. I did attempt to stream after updating my video drivers and when the Xbox started choking (read: video stutter and even audio pausing in this case) and I went to my PC and noticed that a couple of my cores were pretty high in percentage used. After all this it might just be my processor after all. I had never noticed this before and in the past when I checked all four were under 20% use and generally under 10% for the most part. When I say my buddy has the same setup I didn't mean the PC. He has a newer processor so it could be that this is indeed what the issue is after all. Whenever I checked in the past and saw my CPU was running so low I just assumed it wasn't the problem.

Quote from get2Brad View Post :
You aren't having 24 vs 23.976 compatibility issues. None of your videos are 24, the video world does not ever operate at 24 fps.
Yeah, it seems like I decided this a while back but wasn't sure why I had drawn the conclusion that I had. I thought I would look into it again.

Quote from get2Brad View Post :
Can you tell us what hard drive you upgraded to?



The primary HDD on that PC is just a basic 1TB HDD with the usual specs (SATA, 7200rpm, etc.) and the secondary is also a basic 2TB HDD but I seem to recall it being a 5400rpm drive. I don't have an SSD in this particular machine because for the purpose it's being used it's not necessary.
Play it locally to see if it is a streaming related issue or a hardware/software issue. Your playback software may also have options for how much to buffer. This does not sound like a network problem to me.

What video card are you using?

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#300
Question about the rebate. I received the router today and it didn't come with any invoice or packing slip. Do I just print the invoice I got via email from newegg or do I have to go to newegg website and print the invoice from there?
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