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Standard User alewis
(experienced) Wed 25-Dec-19 12:10:24
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Cable vs FFTC?


[link to this post]
 
So I'm on the move.. again!

New property is in a Virgin Media area, so I have the option of cable.

Pricewise, it's more than competitive, at £27 for 100mb (vs avg 67Mb FTTC), or £32 for 200mb.

I'm currently with SSE, and more than happy with them; truly unlimited in no caps, no throttling, and no port/traffic blocking.

Obviously, cable is shared, and 'speed' will vary according to other user's usage - but do Virgin have any limits to either throttling, traffic shaping or port-blocking?


Related Q. I use a BT modem to connect to ISP, with a PFSense box providing routing, firewall, DNS resolution/forwarding, etc. Can the Virgin router/modem be used in the same way (disable wifi and routing functions, use a [bridged] modem and my PFSense box as the router)?

The views expressed here are mine alone, and do NOT reflect those of my employer, present or previous.
Standard User ashdown
(newbie) Wed 25-Dec-19 19:05:18
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Re: Cable vs FFTC?


[re: alewis] [link to this post]
 
As a recent refugee from Virgin (now on FTTC) also using pfSense, I can confirm that the Virgin-supplied "hub" can be switched into what they call "modem mode", when it acts simply as a modem interface between the VM cable and Ethernet. In this mode, the downstream router (pfSense) uses DHCP to acquire its public IP address and it all works well. There's no throttling (unless you happen to live in an over-subscribed area), and no port or traffic blocking.

A word of caution about VM's pricing: it looks reasonable at first but they increase the price rapidly after the initial discounted period, sometimes several times a year. The only way of maintaining a halfway-reasonable price is to ring them every year and "negotiate" a new yearly contract at a new price. If you don't do this, the price just keeps on going up and up. Calling them involves waiting in a queue for up to an hour and a half.

Technically, I found the service to be be fine, but the customer service is awful. I just got so fed up with the continual price rises and need to negotiate regularly, that I gave up and moved to FTTC.

Edited by ashdown (Wed 25-Dec-19 19:06:03)

Standard User jchamier
(eat-sleep-adslguide) Wed 25-Dec-19 22:05:58
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Re: Cable vs FFTC?


[re: alewis] [link to this post]
 
I’ve just moved from FTTC to cable mostly as the FTTC upload speeds declined with other people moving to cheap inclusive deals with Sky, EE and TalkTalk.

I’m in north east Hampshire and only “shared medium” effect is the latency. See my BQM graph in signature for more. Speeds are 99.9% of the time always what I pay for. I went for 200/20.

If Openreach fibre appears, I will switch as other ISPs have features I would prefer such as IPv6 and static IPv4 options not available on Virgin Media.

VirginMedia Cable M200 22/nov/19
7 years of FTTC VDSL BT then plusnet with sync from 55/12 to 46/5
20 years of broadband connectivity since 1999 trial - Live BQM
“Be liberal in what you accept, and conservative in what you send” Jon Postel


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Standard User alewis
(experienced) Wed 25-Dec-19 23:24:19
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Re: Cable vs FFTC?


[re: jchamier] [link to this post]
 
@both

Cheers gents.

I'm currently FTTC with SSE, who have been absolutely flawless. Literally, never had a problem. They use - or used to use - Daisy as the provider, never had any issues rel speed degradation or backhaul congestion.

Any idea on lead time from order to installation/activation (I think there may have been cable in new property already)

The views expressed here are mine alone, and do NOT reflect those of my employer, present or previous.
Standard User mortmaru
(newbie) Thu 26-Dec-19 22:58:00
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Re: Cable vs FFTC?


[re: alewis] [link to this post]
 
I would choose FTTC over VM cable every time.

If you are happy with FTTC provider already why not stick with them if the service say worst case ends up not being great at new place you can just switch to VM.
Standard User DRW
(committed) Fri 27-Dec-19 11:51:58
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Re: Cable vs FFTC?


[re: ashdown] [link to this post]
 
I diid the jump from FTTC to Virgin after 17 years using the copper cable service (upgrading as each new iteration appeared - I was the first user to get a FTTC connection in the cabinet).

I changed to Virgin because there were too many slow downs, interuptions, waiting for Openreach to climb a pole or dig into the pit to sort out a cable mismatch or fault. I also got fed up of going through the check out ritual to ensure that there was no fault inside the house.

If you know the Openreach network is new in your area then you should be OK, if it is an established area and has the Openreach network installed for many decades checkout the service the local Virgin users receive.

Walking along the pavement checkout how many people have got Virgin media connections. Chat to the neighbours to see what service they receive. Allow for the fact that most people's expectacion is low, if they have moved to Virgin to stream video reliably then I think you have the answer.
Standard User jchamier
(eat-sleep-adslguide) Sat 28-Dec-19 12:00:29
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Re: Cable vs FFTC?


[re: alewis] [link to this post]
 
In reply to a post by alewis:
I'm currently FTTC with SSE, who have been absolutely flawless. Literally, never had a problem. They use - or used to use - Daisy as the provider, never had any issues rel speed degradation or backhaul congestion.

Unless you want something more that FTTC can't provide (in my case, faster upload); then I don't see a reason to switch. There is always a risk you move to a poor VM area, and have to cancel quickly, or be stuck for 12 months.

Any idea on lead time from order to installation/activation (I think there may have been cable in new property already)
This depends if the cable point in the home is still active and on the VM database. My flat had cable before, and there was an old NTL branded point in the room, which VM installer was happy to see and made his job easier.
You might find that VM have the property as "cable point available" on their database, and send you a self-install kit, not needing an installer. At the point of ordering I was able to choose an installer date, and the earliest was 5 days later, I actually chose later.

VirginMedia Cable M200 22/nov/19
7 years of FTTC VDSL BT then plusnet with sync from 55/12 to 46/5
20 years of broadband connectivity since 1999 trial - Live BQM
“Be liberal in what you accept, and conservative in what you send” Jon Postel
Standard User lltfdaniel
(regular) Fri 03-Jan-20 18:36:06
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Re: Cable vs FFTC?


[re: alewis] [link to this post]
 
Well it is a mixed bag as to what we want from broadband so i will start as this,

For me ping times are important so i switched from virgin media cable to zen fttc,

I used to get ping times of like 30-40ms with virgin but now since i am with zen my ping times have halved or a bit more lower then halve of the ping time of 30-40 ms,

I get 10-15ms at best with zen to whatever uk servers so yeah, i don't mind the slower download speed when compared to virgin but yeah, i get 50-55 mbps with zen but for me ping times are alot lower.

I think virgin actually do have a FUP policy so yeah.

If you don't care about ping so much as with me then virgin is a no brainer plus virgin gives much faster download speeds like with their 350 or vip 500 mbps package

My 2 pence,

Dan.
Standard User wolvesmad
(knowledge is power) Fri 03-Jan-20 22:02:27
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Re: Cable vs FFTC?


[re: alewis] [link to this post]
 
Any idea what the FTTC connection will be like at your new place?

If you want lower latency, sometimes its best to go with 55/10 instead of 76/20 to make sure your connection stays on FastPath if it's a flakey line.

-

BT Fibre Unlimited 55|10Mb
Standard User TMCR
(committed) Sat 04-Jan-20 13:52:19
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Re: Cable vs FFTC?


[re: jchamier] [link to this post]
 
In reply to a post by jchamier:
Unless you want something more that FTTC can't provide (in my case, faster upload);

I jumped from VM to EE two years ago. VM charged the earth for a 200 Mbps download connection which gave me all of 7 Mbps upload speed.
EE give me 59 Mbps download but I get 17Mbps upload. A big improvement on what VM could offer at the time.
All depends on what FTTC connection you have of course.

EE Fibre Plus
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