Whatg does the exchange normally look like, I can provide a more accurate description if it helps? Height etc...
I reason I ask, is because there in one located less than 500 metres down the road my despite having a plan that supports full speed download, I get pretty lousy speeds compared to some other people on GeekZone.
To what extent does the modem/router affect line speed? I am looking to buy a new one as we currently use a D-Link from Telecom (standard issue?) and I have heard they are pretty average - is this true?
Maybe I will start a new thread elsewhere for suggestions - don't wanna be rude and go off topic.
As far as my (rather limited) knowledge stretches, a regular exchange looks like "a largeish building with Downer [now Chorus] vans parked outside." <- since the exchange isn't the same thing as a cabinet 'exchange'.
A cabinet looks something like
Sadly, you could have one outside your next door neighbour's house (10M away) and not be connected to one. Personally, I don't understand why this would be the case, but it does happen.
Here's a useful map which should give you an idea if you're connected to a cabinet. Or if you're not: http://maps.google.com/?q=http://maps.alchemy.co.nz/wms/kml_reflect?layers=topp:PlannedCabinet_7_5_2008_coverage (map from here)
BruceLimNZ: Any suggestions to improve my international speed?
Would a new router/modem help?
Other than a different ISP?
I don't believe that there's much you can do to improve international speeds when they're not near your national speeds. A bit of tweaking here and there wouldn't gain much - if anything. Max of ~100kbps. (Which is hardly worth the effort.)
However, a download manager (which uses >4 connections) would, most likely, improve the speed of HTTP downloads (rather than image loading/streaming).