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Mixed WLAN - Intersil implementation

Although Intersil may be slightly behind Broadcom in the draft-11g-only throughput race, right now, they're ahead in their handling of mixed 11b / draft-11g stations. A look at Figure 18 will show you why I say this.

Intersil Original - Intersil & NETGEAR WAB501 STA

Figure 18: Intersil Original - Intersil & NETGEAR WAB501 Stations
(click on the image for a full-sized view)

Once again, I set up my mixed draft-11g / 11b test, but this time used the Intersil AP and client along with a NETGEAR WAB501 Dual Band card (forced to 11b mode). The test result clearly shows that the draft-11g client has much better throughput than any mixed-mode case that I tested with Broadcom-based gear. Sure looks to me like Intersil got some of the 6.1 draft changes included into their first release!

Intersil New - Intersil & NETGEAR WAB501 STA

Figure 19: Intersil New - Intersil & NETGEAR WAB501 Stations
(click on the image for a full-sized view)

I also reran the test using the newer firmware that Intersil provided, but Figure 19 doesn't show much difference in performance. I also ran the same test using the other 11b clients that I test with and the results are shown in Figures 20 - 22.

Intersil New - Intersil & ORiNOCO Gold Stations

Figure 20: Intersil New - Intersil & ORiNOCO Gold Stations
(click on the image for a full-sized view)

Intersil New - Intersil & NETGEAR MA401 Stations

Figure 21: Intersil New - Intersil & NETGEAR MA401 Stations
(click on the image for a full-sized view)

Intersil New - Intersil & D-Link DWL-650+ Stations

Figure 22: Intersil New - Intersil & D-Link DWL-650+ Stations
(click on the image for a full-sized view)

The Atheros 5100X-based NETGEAR WAB501 and TI ACX-100-based D-Link DWL-650+ seem to have the best mixed mode operation with the present firmware. Although these results are encouraging, they show Intersil also still has some work to do to achieve the desired mixed-mode performance.

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