Fibre or ADSL

+3 votes
What is the difference between ADSL & Fibre and which one is better?
asked Mar 6, 2017 in Fibre by Rookie (8,520 points)

4 Answers

+3 votes

There are a hide spectrum of differences, but here are a few key points.

What is ADSL?

An Asymmetric Digital Subscriber Line (ADSL) is an Internet connection which runs through the already existing copper lines that we have all used in the past for telephone landlines. ADSL uses a different frequency to phone lines which is why we are able to make phone calls and connect to the Internet at the same time.


What is Fibre?

Fibre optic cable connections use light impulses to transfer data (instead of electrical impulses) through thin glass fibre tubes. A Fibre cable is made up of thousands of individual fibres, each as thin as a piece of human hair. This makes Fibre cables thinner, lighter and more durable than the traditional copper cabling used for phone lines and ADSL. Because the conductor used within the cables is glass and not electrical, lightning storms and other electrical disturbances will not cause interference on Fibre lines.


ADSL is available nationwide wherever a telephone landline is already in place. If there is no landline available, then one must be installed by Telkom before your business can have access to the connection. Once ordered, installation is very quick as we dispatch a router and it usually takes only 2 to 7 working days to arrive. Once you have received your router you can immediately connect to the Internet and get your internet up and running!

Fibre is currently only available in some areas, check the coverage map on the Afrihost web page for more info.

When it comes to speed Fibre is far, far superior. There is no doubt that a Fibre connection will change the way you browse!
Fibre is far more stable and superior to ADSL when it comes to reliability, as it is a glass cable, where as ADSL runs through older copper cables subject to degradation. 

answered Mar 6, 2017 by InternetMatt (10,620 points)
+2 votes
ADSL is a very clever way of using your old telephone lines to carry a high speed data link, up to 20 or 40 Mbps, but often enough 1Mbps.  In South Africa all ADSL goes via Telkom.

Fibre uses newly installed glass fibre, and is really fast, like awesomely amazingly fast - lower latency, and speeds of 100Mbps and more - you're basically plugging straight into the network.

Fibre is also is an essential part of your diet.  Dieticians do not recommend ADSL supplements if your area supports fibre.
answered Mar 6, 2017 by Bananaman (5,390 points)
0 votes

Fibre is definitely better in almost every respect.

ADSL carries data and gives you internet access over copper cables (existing Telkom telephone lines). Therefore it is subject to electrical and environmental interference and reduction in speed with an increase in distance. Lighting can induce a modem damaging pulse over your ADSL line. Speeds are relatively low between 1 and 20mbps and in many areas the infrastructure is old and unstable.

Fibre gives you access to the internet at up to 1000mbps using light over fibre (glass or plastic - no phone line required). Fibre Is not subject to noise or interference under normal circumstances and does not suffer from lightning issues. Speed is hardly affected by distance if at all. 

Fibre is relatively stable, has a higher performance in speed and reliability while it is becoming more and more cost-effective.

Currently, the price difference between ADSL and Fibre is not very significant at similar speeds especially when the landline cost is taken into account.

The one downside of Fibre is that not all areas have it. If you can get Fibre its a win over ADSL almost everytime.

The only time ADSL may be preferred is if budget is the only concern and 1mbps will be sufficient.

VIVA Afrihost Fibre

answered Mar 6, 2017 by Albow (810 points)
edited Mar 6, 2017 by Albow
+1 vote
Fiber is a must no other choice
answered Mar 7, 2017 by ChloeRoberts (160 points)