How to Choose the Best ADSL for You
Q. Which ADSL speed should I choose to get the best speed without wasting money?
A. There are several factors. Use the following charts to help you decide which speed is best.
However, before choosing an ADSL speed, you should be sure ADSL is what you want. If Hikari (fiber optic) is already installed in your apartment building, that will give you better speed at the same or lower cost. For info on Hikari and how to apply, go to Hikari vs. ADSL page. If you've already determined that ADSL is best for you, read on...
Note: If you are looking for advice on which type service (ADSL vs. Hikari, etc.) to order then you should see the Service Advice page instead.
Speed Declines over Distance
With all DSL services, the speed declines over distance from the server located in the telephone exchange office. The faster the speed at the start, the faster the decline so, as you get further from the exchange building, the speeds tend to converge.
Determine your Distance
Before you can decide which service to order, you have to know how far you are from the exchange building. If you rquested an Availability Report, you'll find your distance near the end of the report. If you didn't request a report, you can go to the Distance Check page which has instructions for finding your distance. (That link will open in a new window so just close that window and any others that open to come back here.)
Speeds at Distance
Here is a chart that show the estimated approximate speeds that you can expect to get with Yahoo! BB ADSL service. Note that in the download chart (left) each horizontal line represents a difference of 4M. In the upload chart, 3 lines represents a difference of 1M.
Here is an enlarged view of the bottom portion of the download chart:
Note that these charts do not show the exact speed you'll get. In fact, due to the nature of DSL technology, your actual speed may vary from the chart by significant amounts due to the conditions at your location.
Choosing your Speed
First of all, for most people, the download speed is more important than the upload speed because the download speed will affect how fast pages load and files are transferred. Most people only upload small amounts of text (URLs and email, for example). The primary exception is in peer-to-peer sharing where files are loaded both up and down.
At the most basic level, there are two factors that drive the decision for most people. Generally speaking, most users either want to have the fastest possible connection or they want to have the most economical service. At face value, the choice seems straightforward; you choose the fastest service or you choose the cheapest service. However, there's more to it than just speed and price.
As you can see by looking at the above chart, the speeds for the various services start out very different but converge at about two kilometers. The faster services are faster beyond that point, but not much. The 50M and 26M in particular almost seem to merge.
Cost of Various Services
The above charts display the speed differences. In order to judge the best service, you also need to consider price differences. Here are the prices for various speeds. Shown are the prices for Yahoo! BB both with and without NTT phone service.
If you order YBB with NTT, then you must pay both the Yahoo! BB cost shown here plus the cost of NTT tolephone service (generally around ¥1,500 to ¥2,000/month). So, as you can see, the cost is about the same either way.
Yahoo! BB with NTT:
Yahoo! BB without NTT:
Note: prices shown here include 5% sales tax as well as all miscellaneous charges (modem, ISP, etc.). Please keep that fact in mind whenever comparing prices of other companies. There isn't much difference in price between different companies so, if another service seems to be much cheaper, then they're probably leaving something out of the price. For details on prices, see the Price Chart page.
Following are general recommendations at various distances. For more detailed explanations of the recommendations see the "Speed Difference vs. Cost Difference" section below.
There are three recommendations for most of the distance ranges: Speed, Medium and Economy. The "Medium" choice is the medium speed at the medium cost. The 26M service is only ¥105/month less than 50M so 26M is not usually recommended unless the 50M service is unavailable.
50M Revo offers the same download speed as 50M but has faster upload speeds and so is attractive to users who are interested in gaming and sharing. The faster upload speed is only effective, however, for users who are within about 800 meters of the exchange building.
Reach DSL is a special DSL that is much slower than the other but has the advantage of "reaching" much more distant users. And, slow as it is (about 800 kbps), it's still 15 times faster than dial-up.
Here are BBapply's recommendations:
Note: above 5000 meters, the stability of 50M service becomes an issue. The only way to find out if it will work is to have it connected. Likewise for Reach DSL above 7000 meters. In either case, there is no charge for trying as long as you cancel during the first month of connection.
Speed Difference vs. Cost Difference