Tuesday, April 2nd 2019

Intel Unveils Wi-Fi 6 AX200 "Cyclone Peak" WLAN NIC

Intel formally launched the Wi-Fi 6 AX200 client-segment WLAN card for notebooks and PC motherboards in the M.2-2230 and M.2-1216 form-factors, based on the "Cyclone Peak" PHY powering the Wireless AX-22260 NIC family. The card interfaces with its host over PCI-Express 3.0 x1 and USB 2.0, for the Wi-Fi and integrated Bluetooth interfaces, respectively. As a Wi-Fi 6 adapter, it supports 802.11ax over 2x2 MU-MIMO antennae, and peak bandwidth of 2.4 Gbps, with support for both the 5 GHz and 2.4 GHz bands. The Bluetooth interface is version 5.0.
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19 Comments on Intel Unveils Wi-Fi 6 AX200 "Cyclone Peak" WLAN NIC

#1
notb
802.11ax is here. Pretty much the end of ethernet cables at home.
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#2
btarunr
Editor & Senior Moderator
notb, post: 4024039, member: 165619"
802.11ax is here. Pretty much the end of ethernet cables at home.
Enthusiasts and gamers would still prefer wired ethernet for lower latency and lower CPU overhead.

With WLAN your CPU spends a lot of its resources encrypting/decrypting your network traffic (WPA2).
Posted on Reply
#3
notb
btarunr, post: 4024053, member: 43587"
Enthusiasts and gamers would still prefer wired ethernet for lower latency and lower CPU overhead.
802.11ax has much lower lower latencies compared to previous standards. Look it up.

Yes, Ethernet will always be faster and we'll always have people saying that they can totally feel that 1ns advantage (like the 144Hz vs 120Hz discussion). But ax, if properly implemented, should make LAN and WAN hard to distinguish.
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#4
TheUn4seen
notb, post: 4024054, member: 165619"
802.11ax has much lower lower latencies compared to previous standards. Look it up.

Yes, Ethernet will always be faster and we'll always have people saying that they can totally feel that 1ns advantage (like the 144Hz vs 120Hz discussion). But ax, if properly implemented, should make LAN and WAN hard to distinguish.
Unless you happen to live in a non-tiny house. Or in an electromagnetically noisy area. Or you don't want to spend 200$ on a router which looks like it's designed by a 12-year-old.
I agree they will be indistinguishable for most users, but so is 802.11ac or even 802.11n for this type of people. And I fail to see a point of using wireless communication in stationary workstations (only place where ethernet is commonly used and, as such, replacing it is actually viable - most laptops these days don't even have ethernet). It's nice to see progress, but judging from abysmal adoption of 802.11ac among general population, I wouldn't consider ax important at all outside of niche use cases. In my area more than 3/4 of WiFi networks are still 802.11g, two or three are n(2.4GHz), and there is just one 5GHz 802.11ac network, which is mine.
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#5
Ferrum Master
notb, post: 4024054, member: 165619"
802.11ax has much lower lower latencies compared to previous standards. Look it up.

Yes, Ethernet will always be faster and we'll always have people saying that they can totally feel that 1ns advantage (like the 144Hz vs 120Hz discussion). But ax, if properly implemented, should make LAN and WAN hard to distinguish.
Dream on...

In reality it is always different. Obstacles, congestion , interference. It will not take off so easy.
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#6
Tsukiyomi91
probably try this one out once the market for 802.11ax or WiFi 6 protocol becomes more mainstream since the majority of users are still on 802.11ac.
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#7
notb
Ferrum Master, post: 4024155, member: 90058"
Dream on...

In reality it is always different. Obstacles, congestion , interference. It will not take off so easy.
802.11ax is designed to cover that. It's an "IoT-friendly" WiFi. Ultimately it's going to work on 1-7GHz band. Congestion and interference impact should be minimal.

If you have obstacles, use a range extender. Or a mesh. It's a problem that has been solved.
No offense, but mentioning obstacles as a problem of radio connection in comparison to a cable looks at least weird...
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#8
bonehead123
AX...oh yea, bring it on 4 sure 4 sure....moar cushin fo' da pushin....
Posted on Reply
#9
Caring1
notb, post: 4024201, member: 165619"
If you have obstacles, use a range extender. Or a mesh. It's a problem that has been solved.
No offense, but mentioning obstacles as a problem of radio connection in comparison to a cable looks at least weird...
No offense but saying the problem is solved still doesn't bring cost even close to ethernet.
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#10
btarunr
Editor & Senior Moderator
notb, post: 4024054, member: 165619"
802.11ax has much lower lower latencies compared to previous standards. Look it up.

Yes, Ethernet will always be faster and we'll always have people saying that they can totally feel that 1ns advantage (like the 144Hz vs 120Hz discussion). But ax, if properly implemented, should make LAN and WAN hard to distinguish.
You still haven't answered how WiFi-AX is any better for your CPU. We still haven't reached that point in CPU performance where WLAN overhead is "free" (i.e. <5% CPU usage when pushing data at >1 Gbps and not letting the CPU climb up from its idle C-state). Try pushing data through your shiny 802.11ax at 2.4 Gbps without like 30% CPU usage encrypting all that data.
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#11
tigger
I'm the only one
btarunr, post: 4024234, member: 43587"
You still haven't answered how WiFi-AX is any better for your CPU. We still haven't reached that point in CPU performance where WLAN overhead is "free" (i.e. <5% CPU usage when pushing data at >1 Gbps and not letting the CPU climb up from its idle C-state). Try pushing data through your shiny 802.11ax at 2.4 Gbps without like 30% CPU usage encrypting all that data.
So is the CPU overhead on LAN 0%?
Posted on Reply
#12
btarunr
Editor & Senior Moderator
tigger, post: 4024236, member: 24505"
So is the CPU overhead on LAN 0%?
It's not, but it's significantly lesser than WLAN because your CPU isn't encrypting/decrypting the link-layer with AES (needed by WPA2).
Posted on Reply
#13
tigger
I'm the only one
btarunr, post: 4024281, member: 43587"
It's not, but it's significantly lesser than WLAN because your CPU isn't encrypting/decrypting the link-layer with AES (needed by WPA2).

According to this article, WLAN is 60% less efficient than wired ethernet. All that extra power is being hogged by your CPU to keep your traffic encrypted.
Good job i just got a lan cable so I don't have to use wifi for ESO then lol
Posted on Reply
#14
Konceptz
No matter how far wireless technology advances, nothing will ever beat a wired, physical connection...period
Posted on Reply
#15
Fx
btarunr, post: 4024053, member: 43587"
Enthusiasts and gamers would still prefer wired ethernet for lower latency and lower CPU overhead.

With WLAN your CPU spends a lot of its resources encrypting/decrypting your network traffic (WPA2).
Indeed. This is in addition to wired always being instrinsically safer due to less exposure.
Posted on Reply
#16
notb
Caring1, post: 4024214, member: 153156"
No offense but saying the problem is solved still doesn't bring cost even close to ethernet.
I can't imagine a practical situation where a WiFi home network would be more expensive than ethernet.
Care to explain?
edit: You have a single PC standing next to the router? :-)
Konceptz, post: 4024296, member: 59570"
No matter how far wireless technology advances, nothing will ever beat a wired, physical connection...period
Actually, communication by light in vacuum is the best thing we can have, so it's not exactly "physical". We only need the cable to hold the vacuum and make it change direction.
Prototypes have already been built, so your statement is false. :)
btarunr, post: 4024234, member: 43587"
You still haven't answered how WiFi-AX is any better for your CPU. We still haven't reached that point in CPU performance where WLAN overhead is "free" (i.e. <5% CPU usage when pushing data at >1 Gbps and not letting the CPU climb up from its idle C-state). Try pushing data through your shiny 802.11ax at 2.4 Gbps without like 30% CPU usage encrypting all that data.
I don't understand this argument. I own a CPU to be able to do stuff. If that stuff consumes some of CPU performance - good. It means I spent money for a reason.
I honestly don't know how you live and why you need 8 cores. You watch the load graph and get pleasure from low %?

WiFi is such an enormous comfort. I'm astonished this discussion is happening. :eek:
Posted on Reply
#17
btarunr
Editor & Senior Moderator
notb, post: 4024336, member: 165619"
I don't understand this argument. I own a CPU to be able to do stuff. If that stuff consumes some of CPU performance - good. It means I spent money for a reason.
A CPU at 30% consumes more energy than a CPU at 5%, because its running at higher C-states. Wired saves power.

I shouldn't want 30% of my CPU time spent on the freaking network stack in the year 2019.
Posted on Reply
#18
trparky
Because when it comes to gaming and streaming at the same time you need all the CPU power you can get. If your CPU is spending time decrypting/encrypting WiFi AES data then that's not CPU power you can be using for gaming and streaming. Now if only we could figure out how to offload this kind of compute job to a dedicated chip on the WiFi card itself.
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#19
btarunr
Editor & Senior Moderator
trparky, post: 4024342, member: 170376"
Because when it comes to gaming and streaming at the same time you need all the CPU power you can get. If your CPU is spending time decrypting/encrypting WiFi AES data then that's not CPU power you can be using for gaming and streaming. Now if only we could figure out how to offload this kind of compute job to a dedicated chip on the WiFi card itself.
I imagine an 802.11ax NIC with 100% native signal processing (i.e. 0% HSP, complete WPA2 offload), would need the compute power of a Snapdragon 845 SoC to cope with 2.4 Gbps AES encryption.
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