Who has Clear WiMax?
November 5, 2009 10:52 AM   Subscribe

Is the new-fangled Clear WiMax low latency enough for gaming?

Clear WiMax has come to my town and is attractively priced compared to my current cable provider.

My only hesitation is latency issues. Searching Google, there is conflicting information regarding whether Clear's latency is better or worse than a cable internet connection. I do a lot of online gaming so latency is a big deal. With high latency, starvosthewonderchicken might finally be able to kick my butt in TF2, and that would make me sad.

I know I can go "test drive" Clear before I buy, but I wanted to know if anyone here has real life experience using Clear WiMax?
posted by falconred to Computers & Internet (4 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
I started using Clear WiMax this past August.

I'd say that it's good enough for most gaming, though not necessarily optimal. Right now, I'm in Atlanta, Georgia. My connection's IP address is based in Abilene, Texas -- I don't know why -- and I'm reading a 123 ms ping with a server in Austin.

However, I've had some pretty severe connectivity issues. I've experienced days-long periods in which my connection would drop several times an hour, most recently in mid-October.

Those were dark, dark days, during which I almost made the switch to Comcast.
posted by SpringAquifer at 11:38 AM on November 5, 2009

I recently used the 7-day trial in north Atlanta. I shipped the hardware back yesterday for my refund. From my experiences, the coverage in Atlanta is spotty enough that it was not worth my $. YMMV. (Regions tested: Alpharetta, Cumming, South DeKalb, North Cobb)
posted by frwagon at 12:56 PM on November 5, 2009

If you find the best receiving place in your home and place a repeater, amplifier or hub there, and then throw your own Wifi-N WLAN out from that point, it can be good enough.

But like all wireless, signal strength will wax and wane with time, other use, weather, and other interfering radiation. In other words, when gaming, you won't be immune from nacho headshots.
posted by rokusan at 1:53 PM on November 5, 2009

I've had Clear for 10 months now in Portland and as far as I can tell it's fine for TF2 or anything else I've tried playing online (UT3, various MMOs and so on). I switched from Qwest DSL to Clear and I recall pings going down slightly with Clear.

What kind of ping times are you thinking are too high? I usually see plenty of servers in the 100s and 200s range and the MeFight servers are in the 200s I believe.
posted by turbodog at 3:03 PM on November 5, 2009

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