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125 posts

Master Geek

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# 18377 8-Jan-2008 17:18
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Hello eveyone -

I'm having a few problems with my Telecom line - if anyone could help, it'd be much appreciated.

I've been experiencing fairly woeful (Xtra) ADSL sync speeds (currently 1400Kbps downstream), plus intermittent crackling line noise when making calls and occasional ADSL disconnections. This has been the case ever since I moved in to my house last year.

My house is a fairly new (2003) build and is in an urban area (South Auckland), and at less than 1km as the crow flies, geographically close to the local exchange. I spent Sunday afternoon exhaustively testing everything I could - disconnecting everything from the phone sockets, trying each one at a time, trying different ADSL filters, different phones, and even a spare ADSL router, all with no improvement. I'm as confident as I can be that my equipment isn't causing the problem, and that the problem must be somewhere upstream of the phone sockets in the house.

Telecom sent an engineer round today to check the line, who was very nice, but didn't seem to do much and couldn't come up with any solutions. Apparently the line is routed from my house underground to a road cabinet, which is connected up using fibre optic cabling. He left his card, but implied that there was nothing much he could do.

Could anyone point me in the right direction about what might be wrong, or let me know what I should ask Telecom to check?


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5 posts

Wannabe Geek

  # 103633 8-Jan-2008 19:08
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You may have a bad connection between the Telecom demarcation point and your jacks. Alternatively you may have a faulty jack in the house somewhere which is not surprisingly common with the lack of skilled techs out there. Best solution: open every jack point in the house and test intermittently as you go along. Is your house star wired (central hub) or in series (looped around from jack to jack).

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Master Geek

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  # 103861 9-Jan-2008 18:14
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Frequency: You may have a bad connection between the Telecom demarcation point and your jacks. Alternatively you may have a faulty jack in the house somewhere which is not surprisingly common with the lack of skilled techs out there. Best solution: open every jack point in the house and test intermittently as you go along. Is your house star wired (central hub) or in series (looped around from jack to jack).

Hi Frequency -

Thanks very much for your reply.

I've taken a further look, and the wiring seems a bit strange. The jacks are connected with (what appears to be) CAT5 networking cable, with two wires connected to each extension jack point.

I've even made a nifty diagram! The topology is like this:

Wiring diagram

I'm not sure whether it'd count as star wired or in series - I guess it's a bit of both.

I disconnected the wires in the kitchen jack point leading to Junction 2 (which I haven't seen, but must be up in the loft somewhere), and there was no improvement, and the ADSL sync speed is the same at the Kitchen and Bedroom 2 jack points, so I presume the problem is at Junction 1 or futher upstream.

I managed to find Junction 1 in the loft, and it looks like a bit of a nasty lash-up: (The white fluff is loft insulation.)

Junction 1

I suppose my next best course of action would probably be to replace Junction 1 with something a bit more solid and see if it improves the line, but if you have any pointers or information they'd be much appreciated!



637 posts

Ultimate Geek


  # 103875 9-Jan-2008 19:51
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Nice diagram!  Looking at the topology and the photo of the wiring, I'd say that it's almost certainly a poor installation job that is causing your issues.

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Uber Geek

Biddle Corp
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  # 103879 9-Jan-2008 20:46
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While that looks a bit untidy providing all the pairs are correctly joined (white-white and bluewhite-bluewhite) and correctly joined in the BT boxes then it should still work.

Are the jackpoints all 2 wire ones? They should have a 2 clearly printed on the front.

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Wannabe Geek

  # 103947 10-Jan-2008 08:17
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I've had a good look at your layout. First of all the scotchlock connectors that have been used on your cables are not the type that I would use. JA Russell sell a 3 wire type (red in colour) that works on different diameter cores. Your CAT5E should be restripped and rejointed. Strip the blue sheath back about two inches and apply the scotchlocks. If I was in your position I would redo every connection in the house. In addition I would have my DSL router as close to the Telecom demarcation point as possible. I email you some jpegs and links etc if your need further assistance.

6978 posts

Uber Geek


  # 103949 10-Jan-2008 08:56
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Looks a bit ham fisted but as others have said assuming the joints are correctly done then from a POTS perspective it should work ok. However from a DSL perspective there are stubs all over the place, which is not ideal.

I suggest you drop into a wholesaler (Russels, Corys, or MasterTrade) and purchase a wired in DSL Filter (MM3200) $50-60 depending on what discount you can sqeeze out of them and a handfull of 3way ScotchLocks, a box of 100 is about $10.

Wire the filter into the line at junction1, wire it so that the output of the filter carries on to feed all the phone jacks as it does on the blue pair. Wire the input of the filter to the inbound line and to another pair on the cable (say green pair) but have it so it takes a direct route to the site where the modem is placed, if you can do it without further junctions all the better. So in the end you have the blue pair feeding phones all over the place via the filter, and the inbound line taking a direct path without splits on the green pair direct to the DSL modem. You will need to install a seperate 2wire socket for the DSL modem, you will not need microfilters once this is done.

When using the Scotchlocks only ever place one wire in each point, ensure the wire is pushed full home to the end of the body and the wires are straight inside the body of the crimp, once all the wires are in place squeeze by hand then with a pair of wide pliers give the body a final squeeze to ensure its properly home, the gel should just start to poor out around the wires no more.


125 posts

Master Geek

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  # 105843 20-Jan-2008 18:32
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Well, it's been a couple of weeks, but I finally managed to take another look this weekend.

Thanks very much to everyone who responded with their suggestions and advice.

In the end, I temporarily connected a jack point to the cable coming up from the demarcation point, but found no significant improvement in ADSL sync speed. After that, I stripped and rejoined Junction 1 with new Scotchloks. The end result is that there's been no real ADSL improvement, but the disconnections seem to have stopped (so far) - although I suppose that may be a coincidence.

After inspecting the cable coming up from the demarcation point a bit more, I noticed a couple of nasty scratches / gouges close to where it disappears from the loft into the wall, so I have a sneaking suspicion that the cable may be damaged. It was presumably installed in that condition - why anyone would think that's OK, I have absolutely no idea! Annoying.

I have a whole load of Cat 6 cable, so in a way I'm just itching to replace it all, but given that all the cable's routed behind walls it'd be an absolute nightmare!


5547 posts

Uber Geek

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  # 106161 22-Jan-2008 18:10
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I have a whole load of Cat 6 cable, so in a way I'm just itching to replace it all, but given that all the cable's routed behind walls it'd be an absolute nightmare!

I'd suggest before running the new cable through the wall, run a temp cable from the demarc point, in a window to near your router, connect to a new temp jack-point, into router and see if that fixes it. Then you'll know for sure if it's internal or not. NB: do disconnect the rest of the "into house" cabling when you hook this up, so that the only thing connected is: demarc - CAT6 - jack (or RJ45) - router (so basically naked!).

Chorus has spent $1.4 billion on making their xDSL broadband network faster and even more now as they are upgrading their rural Conklins. If your still stuck on ADSL or VDSL, why not spend $195 on a master filter install to make sure you are getting the most out of your connection?
I install - Naked DSL, DSL Master Splitters, VoIP, data cabling and general computer support for home and small business.
Rural Broadband RBI installer for Ultimate Broadband and Full Flavour


Need help in Auckland, Waikato or BoP? Click my email button, or email me direct: [my user name] at geekzonemail dot com

32 posts


  # 106210 22-Jan-2008 23:37
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Hi MrTomato

I agree with coffee baron.... How did you get on?

Basically, bypass everything internal.  Mind you, the tech that visited should have done this anyway?  Was he an ADSL tech?  They have their own laptops and ADSL routers and can check your connection anywhere he can access your line really.  Sounds to me like he was a little inexperienced or late for another job!

For ADSL to work, you will have copper from the premises to the ADSL equipment (either cabinet based or exchange based) so I am not sure what the "fibre" part relates to in the fault?  There can be Fibre from the cabinet to the exchange, which may indicate you have a cabinet based ADSL DSLAM or ASAM.

Is it worse if it is raining?  I had a similar issue and it was due to a damaged cable underground outside my house.  Water got in due to a sloppy roadworks crew when they resealed my street (dug through cable and didn't tell Telecom!).  No problems since it was fixed.  The Telecom tech I got was brilliant and even relocated my demarc for no additional charged (covered it in the fault).

Call faults again on 120 and ask what they think the quality of the line is like.

Basically, if you have a fault on your line and it is deemed a fault, Telecom are required to fix this for you (if possible).

125 posts

Master Geek

Lifetime subscriber

  # 110001 11-Feb-2008 22:40
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Just wanted to update the thread because my line problems were sorted out today, finally!

Essentially, the internal wiring wasn't pretty, but it turned out to be a red herring - I think the original engineer just couldn't be bothered to test the line properly.

Another engineer took a look today, and the problem's solved. It turned out that, despite the cabinet in the road, the line was connected to the local exchange (pretty close as the crow flies) via some sort of insanely long route. It's now wired up to the roadside cabinet, and my line now has an attenuation of 4dB, and a top speed (albeit interlaced) connection! Should really motor along when ADSL2+ finally gets activated.

Once again, thanks very much to everyone who responded and offered suggestions and advice.

32 posts


# 110194 12-Feb-2008 21:11
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Nice one MrT

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