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How can a noisy phone line affect dial-up speeds?

Sometimes a dial-up connection can be slow, even at off times of the day. It seems no matter what you do, the connection crawls. Perhaps the problem is a noisy phone line.

Some phone line connections are considered "dirty". While you may not hear anything wrong, there may be interferance on the line (often caused by electrical, magnetic or radio transmission devices). The phone company can often detect this noise on the line and sometime correct it.

Noise is a real problem for Internet connections. Data waves get smaller as speeds increase. If the line is noisy, it can actually mask the data transmission. This means the system has to slow the connection speed down (producing a larger wave) in order for the data to be read properly. The more noise a line has, the slower the transmission rate the system needs. When the transmission rate drops far enough, the connection may drop all together.

If you are plagued by slow connection speeds, have your phone company test the line. If they find a problem, they may be able to fix it.

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