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Best ISP for gamers?

Community Veteran
Posts: 6,735
Thanks: 12
Registered: 02-02-2008

Best ISP for gamers?

Hello folks, I hope I've posted this in the right place and in the right way.
Firstly I need to declare some interests, or rather lack of, but bear with me:
1. I'm not an online gamer, nor am I ever likely to be
2. I don't (currently) use PlusNet for Broadband (though I used to, and may again)
The ISP I currently use (for good specific reasons, I recommend PN where appropriate) has a lot of gamers "on board". Won't say who it is but you can probably work it out, especially if you've seen my posts elsewhere.
I suspect many gamers are attracted there by the expected speed (it's ADSL2+ and I get 20mbps or so and 1.3mbps upload) and that it's advertised as "unlimited".
However, in their Forums I see many whinges about performance, ping times etc. etc. so there are people with problems. Whether that is only a very small minority or not I don't know, but I just don't see the same sort of complaints here.
Apart from connection speed another major difference is that PN is managed bandwidth whereas my current ISP is definitely not.
In "their" forums there is a newish thread on the subject of "what is the best ISP for gaming" and it's prompted me to ask the same question here.
Anyone care to comment, or am I going over old ground?
16 REPLIES
James
Grafter
Posts: 21,036
Registered: 04-04-2007

Re: Best ISP for gamers?

Hi HPSauce,
I'd suspect that it's network congestion related.  Because of the way that we prioritise traffic we're able to ensure good latency on what we classify as gold and titanium traffic above other types, meaning that during busy times of the day.
It's no secret that O2/Be does have periods of the day when speeds run slower than optimal during their busy times of the day and as they don't differentiate between different types of traffic, you'll see latency issues with gaming traffic.
Good luck with those referrals Wink
Community Veteran
Posts: 6,735
Thanks: 12
Registered: 02-02-2008

Re: Best ISP for gamers?

Hi James,
Maybe I didn't word it right, I wasn't looking for thoughts on the causes of problems elsewhere (probably as you have said though) more some stuff about PlusNet and what traffic management can do for gamers vs raw connection speed.
I have customers of my own some of whom are gamers and I do get asked for my thoughts on different ISP's merits.
I am where I am now because raw download capacity is very useful to me at times and the odd error/glitch is of no consequence, but gaming is a different thing altogether.
Moderator
Moderator
Posts: 17,200
Thanks: 887
Fixes: 101
Registered: 11-01-2008

Re: Best ISP for gamers?

I can only give my point of view from a PS3 / Wii side of things.
There has one game on the PS3 which has really shown up the differences between ISPs for gaming, namely Call Of Duty 4.
For some odd reason the developers decided to use P2P for the multi player aspect. This caused real issues for a lot of gamers on the 'larger' ISPs, including cable, who couldn't connect at all and the ISPs support were far from useful.
I never had any issues with PlusNet with this, neither did a friend who was on Be.
All other online games have been issue free as well on these platforms and for those issues that have been reported on this forum the support has been excellent.
Hope that might be of some help to you.
Will Moderate For Thanks
Loon
Grafter
Posts: 87
Registered: 26-06-2007

Re: Best ISP for gamers?

As an avid gamer I actually came over to PN solely on recommendations from other gamers. Because of the traffic management I find online my ping is rarely beaten. Good examples of this are valve games playing through Steam. A good ping is normally regarded below 20, I normally achieve 5-10 (I still get stuffed mind)  and this is on a line that I know is a lot slower than others I play with.  I hardly ever get a connection speed of more than 3500, even though my router normally syncs between 4500 and 5000.
So as far as I can see speed is not the issue it’s all down to latency, which PN seem to have sussed for us gamers.

Loon  Wink
Community Veteran
Posts: 3,364
Thanks: 15
Registered: 06-04-2007

Re: Best ISP for gamers?


Enta.Net and any of it resellers are a good option as some of the servers for popular games are run on Enta.Net by MultiPlay.
SW.
--
3Mb FTTC
https://portal.plus.net/my.html?action=data_transfer_speed
Grff
Grafter
Posts: 351
Registered: 02-08-2007

Re: Best ISP for gamers?

I can't comment on other ISP's as i've been with PlusNet for donkeys years now, and I think the gaming is.... "ok".
I was on the Premier option, and got an 'ok' connection on COD4 (3 bars)
I switched to the BBYWPro which is prioritised for gaming to see if it was any better, and saw no apparent difference in speed to be honest (not sure why, i'm just assumed it was due to me having a 3.5mb connection, maybe not).
I switched 'back' to my premier account and now appear to get less performance than I did originally on the premier package.  Undecided
Maybe it's just in my head  Grin
IMO, I'd say plusnet is ok for gaming, but i've not got anything to compare it to as I've only ever been with plusnet.
One thing to note is the slightly less useage allowance than some other packages and it's peak times being  8am - midnight. Although it's usually unlikely you'll reach your useage from gaming alone.
Community Veteran
Posts: 3,364
Thanks: 15
Registered: 06-04-2007

Re: Best ISP for gamers?


If the Ellanoya was perfect no user would see any difference in gaming between any of the PN account types.
SW.
--
3Mb FTTC
https://portal.plus.net/my.html?action=data_transfer_speed
craig_p
Grafter
Posts: 112
Registered: 01-08-2007

Re: Best ISP for gamers?

Ive been with PN for over 2 years and my son plays COD 4 on line all the time without any issues. I normally get about 3500 speed so not mega fast but good enough for what we need Grin
jrgrahamcov
Grafter
Posts: 160
Registered: 01-08-2007

Re: Best ISP for gamers?

Hi,
For gaming what you don't want generally is one of the big ISP's who offer very,very poor levels of support or service. You will find the smaller ones tend to cost a bit more but provide a better service.
I was with TalkTalk previously and got peak time pings for gaming of around 150ms. Moved to Plusnet and without changing anything they are now 20ms at peaktimes.
Some tips below to drop your ping assuming your ISP is OK.
(1) Use a hardware fire wall on your router. This does not put any extra load on your PC and will lower you ping.
(2) Turn off AV when gaming only. NOT for any other purpose.
(3) Make sure you have nothing running in the background when gaming
(4) Make sure only you on your internet link. Anyone else jumps on and you will get lag spikes (high pings) as they connect and download things.
(5) Use a network cable and not wireless as it is more reliable and won't get any interference.
(6) Check your FPS (frames per second) in game, If your PC is under powered or the graphics settings are too high for your PC this will impact your ping and make it alot higher in some cases. You need a FPS of about 40 or higher on average for it to have no impact on your ping. You may need to upgrade your CPU, Graphics card or RAM to increase FPS or just drop your graphics settings.
(7) Play on gaming servers in your own country. This gives a much lower ping unless the server is set up very badly.
Good luck  Wink
Grff
Grafter
Posts: 351
Registered: 02-08-2007

Re: Best ISP for gamers?

Of course, most of the above is only relevent to PC Gamers.  Wink  Smiley
Don't forget us middle aged consolers  Grin
Merrick
Grafter
Posts: 102
Registered: 31-08-2007

Re: Best ISP for gamers?

Ive been with PN for nearly 3 years. I get 5-6mbs download speed and a ping of around 80-120. I play COD4 and EVE. Normaly have 4 EVE clients running along side TS and Vent at the same time and it runs fine. Have to drop one coms app and all the clients if i play cod4 though as it bumbs the ping up to 150ish with all that running.
Would like to have a lower ping if possible but dont know to achieve that on COD4.
long story short, PN was my first and only ISP and it does me just fine. I recommend it all the time. supoprts top notch.
Community Veteran
Posts: 1,115
Thanks: 6
Registered: 28-08-2007

Re: Best ISP for gamers?

I have been gaming on a PS3 through a wireless router on BBYW Pro and have experienced no problems, living in the sticks yet only 1 mile from the exchange I regularly get 2.8 on a 3meg connection.
Previous comments to be given respect are that free isp's or packages with mobiles generally are to be avoided like the plague, talking to ppl that have them, getting a stable connection seems to be a problem never mind faster speeds.
Also the comment on app/updater's/AV's is certainly true as I have had the PS3 for about six months with no latency problems via wireless yet I did have probs playing PC titles through a system that was hard wired on the same package I have now.
Jon
Grafter
Posts: 76
Registered: 07-04-2007

Re: Best ISP for gamers?

Hi,
At home I use 20mbit cable and can honestly say I've never had a problem with pings. My mate is on Plusnet and uses Option 1 and his pings are around the same as mine.
This is using CoD4 on PC and wireless!
Tracer
Grafter
Posts: 76
Registered: 17-07-2007

Re: Best ISP for gamers?

Back when Plus Net first launched Broadband it was FAST! faster than everyone else.
All my mates used to use nildram but PN used to out ping them by a good 10-20ms.
Now with such diverse speeds its all swings and roundabouts and everyones looking for a stable ping not a low ping which is something PN delivers in spades.
As for problems with PN gaming wise .. i've been with them for 5 years and can only remember 2 really bad times when games were unplayable.
PN certainly gets my vote for the gamer.