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56k modem's top speeds.

Posted on 1998-02-19
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Last Modified: 2013-12-27
I heard that a 56k modem can only receive at that speed but transmit at 33.6k. Is it true? Does this apply to X2 technology modems or K56 flex technology modems?
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Question by:MadHack
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dew_associates earned 50 total points
ID: 1145526
Hi MadHack!

There's alot of controvery on this issue depending on who you talk to. The modem speeds both ways reported by the MS winsock aren't entirely accurate either. We use Net Medic to monitor traffic and with a good ISP and solid phone line you can get to about 51 to 55k in both directions.

Here's a couple of sites that are normally pretty good with reporting these issues:

http://www.winmag.com

http://sysdoc.pair.com/

http://www.cobb.com/w95/

I you need more all you need to do is ask!
Dennis
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by:MadHack
ID: 1145527
Well, thanks.
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by:jhance
ID: 1145528
dew,

I'm sorry but it just isn't so.  The 56K technology (both USR and Rockwell's) are asymmetric.  The downlink speed has the _potential_ for 56K but the uplink is 28.8K.  Tt is also against current FCC rules to operate the downlink at > 53K! If you are measuring speeds in excess of this you are measuring wrong or are measuring bit-rate including v.42 compression and not the signalling rate.  

The 3COM/USR web site has an excellent paper on this topic at:

http://x2.usr.com/technology/whitepapers.html
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Expert Comment

by:lmar
ID: 1145529
I'm going to toss my $0.02 in as well.  56K modems will also only connect to digital equipment at this speed.  There can only be one analog to digital conversion (your phone line to your local switch)thus 56k to 56k is really 28.8 or 33.6.  Also, it's true they are 56k download only, and the FCC limits this to 53k (if I were a betting man, I'd bet you couldn't tell the difference).  One more thing, there are competing technologies out there so make sure your ISP supports the brand of modem you pick up.
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by:dew_associates
ID: 1145530
JHance, I stand corrected!  We have a T-1 here, so the only testing we have done is when we connect new systems to the lines that sprint has run to our facilities here, which I believe are digital/fibreoptic, but I'm not certain of that (haven't had any reason to check it until you mentioned it). Thanks for the info though, now my curiosity has been piqued.
Dennis
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Author Comment

by:MadHack
ID: 1145531
Yeah. I read about that. A 56k can downlink at the maximum rate of 56kbps but only uplink at 33.6. When the other party sends the data to us at 56k, they use a T1 line connected to the telecom network cloud. That's how it's possible for them to uplink stuffs to us at 56k. :)
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