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Mosbo

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#275865 14-Sep-2020 12:55
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Hi, first post here but have been reading other threads to get some ideas. Just thought i'd ask for more specific thoughts on what I should do anyway.

 

 

 

I've recently moved into our new build and basically just trying to get the best wifi network I can, within reasonable cost of course. Right now i'm setup with Spark Fibre Max so 900 down, 400 up (I think?). I'm on the Spark Smart Modem and have bought a Smart Mesh unit as well as it's a 2 story home and Wifi speeds upstairs were not as good.

 

 

 

Currently, if I stand right next to the Smart Modem I can get approx 500 down on a speed test to Spark Auckland. I get approx 700-800 down over Ethernet. Smart Modem is plugged into ONT in garage, sitting in the usual small steel box in the wall so typically from there i'll get 300-400 down in the lounge which is one wall and about 30 feet away. I found the orientation of the Smart Modem in the wall box helped a lot with this too.

 

 

 

The Smart Mesh sits upstairs and standing right next to that I can still only get about 200-300 down upstairs. If I switch it off and connect my device directly to the Smart Modem instead (still over wifi) I actually get faster speeds from our upstairs office but it drops off quickly in all the other bedrooms, hence wanting the Smart Mesh up there. I get about 100-200 in every room at the moment with current setup.

 

 

 

I can plug the Smart Mesh into an Ethernet port in the office but the only one is up high for a wall tv so I'll need a shelf on the wall to put it up there. I tested this and while does increase speed in the office itself (still only approx 300 down though), I get much the same in other rooms as when it's not plugged in.

 

 

 

All the rooms are wired for Ethernet but only up high on the wall for wall mounted TV's so it's a little bit annoying that I can't really do ethernet for anything except for TV's, which are typically limited to 100mbit anyway! Hence just wanting the best wifi setup possible.

 

 

 

We are an all Apple household and generally all pretty up to date stuff. Nothing 'smart' in the house yet so i've switched off 2,4Ghz for now. Reason for this was an AppleTV in the kids play room was connecting to 2.4 by default and as far as I could tell I couldn't tell it to use 5Ghz manually any way in the Smart Modem? If I could do this I would leave it enabled as it would be useful to have 2.4 should we want any smart lights etc... in future.

 

 

 

So - questions:

 

How can I improve the wifi speeds? Is 500ish down on wifi pretty much the max I can hope for? It seems to me that all devices should be good for the full speed, whatever that may be, but it seems no matter how close I am that's just not possible. I've read on here that the Smart Modem and Mesh units are actually pretty good, but would I get better Wifi speeds if I went for something else? Should I aim for Wifi6 or will that not improve things much? It's expensive so don't want to go that route unless it would definitely work.

 

Could I get 400-500 in every room? Would that basically mean a Mesh unit or some kind in every room? Unrealistic? It does seem weird to me that the Smart Mesh even when on Ethernet won't give me this speed standing right next to it where as the Smart Modem does.

 

Am I just being pedantic and should be happy with 100+ everywhere? I know nothing really utilises more than that right now (streaming etc...) but since i'm paying for 900+ it would be great to get as close to that as possible in as many rooms as possible! 


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Jase2985
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  #2563683 14-Sep-2020 13:04
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advice, dont try and get gigabit over wifi, 500mbps is pretty good but if you want gigabit you are going to pay for it and to be honest its not worth it.


Linux
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  #2563687 14-Sep-2020 13:07
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Using my Fritzbox 7590 I get close to 850Mbps down and 500Mbps up over Wi-Fi which is amazing as its not even Wi-Fi6

 
 
 
 


Mosbo

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  #2563691 14-Sep-2020 13:11
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Jase2985:

 

advice, dont try and get gigabit over wifi, 500mbps is pretty good but if you want gigabit you are going to pay for it and to be honest its not worth it.

 

 

 

 

Yeah I totally get that. I guess if I was getting 500 everywhere i'd be pretty stoked, but it seems that is the max I can get even just centimetres away from the Smart Modem unit so it would be great if I could extend that to 500 in the majority of rooms fairly easily.


Mosbo

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  #2563692 14-Sep-2020 13:14
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Linux: Using my Fritzbox 7590 I get close to 850Mbps down and 500Mbps up over Wi-Fi which is amazing as its not even Wi-Fi6

 

 

 

That sounds more what I would expect - 800ish down next to the device and 500 maybe in subsequent rooms one wall over. Do you know how that compares to Ethernet where you are? At first I wondered if it was just my physical location and that the Fibre wasn't going to give me much more than 500 but i've confirmed over Ethernet I can hit 700-800 and that's on an older device (only thing I have with an Ethernet port handy)


Jase2985
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  #2563693 14-Sep-2020 13:15
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wifi signals drops with distance and as it goes though walls, its unrealistic to expect to get the same speeds you would right next to the Access point/router


Mosbo

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  #2563694 14-Sep-2020 13:17
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Jase2985:

 

wifi signals drops with distance and as it goes though walls, its unrealistic to expect to get the same speeds you would right next to the Access point/router

 

 

 

 

For sure, but why would my access point/router only give me 500 to start with? I guess i'm just trying to understand if the Smart Modem/Mesh combo should be good for more speed or if I should be looking at better gear to get beyond where i'm at now.


Jase2985
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  #2563697 14-Sep-2020 13:18
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because thats as fast as your device or AP/Router goes


 
 
 
 


surfisup1000
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  #2563699 14-Sep-2020 13:20
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Your speeds seem ok.  You're not going to get full speed over wifi as wifi is just not fast enough.  You might want to wait for the next generation of wifi for that.

 

You could possibly plug a wifi access point into any room where you specifically want faster wifi. eg, 

 

https://www.pbtech.co.nz/product/NETUBI1228/Ubiquiti-UniFi-UAP-AC-LITE-Dual-band-AC1200-300867

 

 

 

I have the unifi AC Pro access point which is the top model ... I get around 50MB/s transfer speed on my laptop in the same room as the unifi- this is about 400mbps which is probably about the top speed I could expect in real world usage (in theory it could do 866mbs but nothing operates in a perfect world with no objects and no interference and no errors )  

 

 


Mosbo

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  #2563701 14-Sep-2020 13:24
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Jase2985:

 

because thats as fast as your device or AP/Router goes

 

 

 

 

What would you recommend as a better alternative? 


Mosbo

13 posts

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  #2563703 14-Sep-2020 13:28
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surfisup1000:

 

Your speeds seem ok.  You're not going to get full speed over wifi as wifi is just not fast enough.  You might want to wait for the next generation of wifi for that.

 

You could possibly plug a wifi access point into any room where you specifically want faster wifi. eg, 

 

https://www.pbtech.co.nz/product/NETUBI1228/Ubiquiti-UniFi-UAP-AC-LITE-Dual-band-AC1200-300867

 

 

 

I have the unifi AC Pro access point which is the top model ... I get around 50MB/s transfer speed on my laptop in the same room as the unifi- this is about 400mbps which is probably about the top speed I could expect in real world usage (in theory it could do 866mbs but nothing operates in a perfect world with no objects and no interference and no errors )  

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cool thanks, I've seen these recommended quite a bit. What else would I need to get them to work? Or could I just plug the Unifi into Ethernet directly to the Smart Modem and it should work? These look a lot smaller and more compact to hide away than the Smart Mesh units so I could do maybe 2 of these upstairs which would help.

 

Would you recommend ditching the Smart Modem completely, at least from a wifi perspective (just disabling the wifi) and using just these instead? Say one downstairs and 2 upstairs?


Jase2985
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  #2563706 14-Sep-2020 13:34
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Mosbo:

 

Jase2985:

 

because thats as fast as your device or AP/Router goes

 

 

 

 

What would you recommend as a better alternative? 

 

 

in all seriousness using a cable is the better alternative to wifi

 

What devices are you using wirelessly that need 900+mbps?

 

 


cyril7
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  #2563707 14-Sep-2020 13:35
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Hi, strongly recommend UniFi's so yes turn the wireless off in the smart modem, and leave the smart modem out in garage cabinet. Based on the outlets being up high then wall mounted WAPs makes sense, a wee bit dumb though that you only have high outlets. Is there draw wires from the high location to low down directly below, if so you could remove an outlet from the faceplate and attach a 2m fly lead and present it down at approx 300mm off the floor.

 

The UniFi APs need a controller, you can just run one up on a PC/laptop and shut it down when you have finished configuring the setup, ie it does not need to run all the time unless you want to monitor the state of the network etc. If you do want it running all the time then there are a couple of cloud instances about that you can get a sub site on, I operate one as does Michael Murphy, let one of us know if you want a sub site to use.

 

Cyril


Jase2985
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  #2563708 14-Sep-2020 13:36
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you really need to list all your devices and Router/AP's

 

 

 

some of your problem is the Router is in the network cabinet in the garage and if its a metal fronted one then thats a killer for wifi speed.


Mosbo

13 posts

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  #2563735 14-Sep-2020 14:00
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Literally nothing I do requires these high speeds at all, I get that, i'm just being pedantic and want to get the best out of what I have. Don't mind spending a bit to improve more if I can but also don't want to waste time and money if it can't be done!

 

 

 

In saying this, both my wife and I work from home quite a bit and i'm a web developer (mostly) so faster speeds always help.

 

 

 

I'm testing speeds mostly on an iPhone 11 Pro Max so this would be the most up to date device we have and I know this is capable of Wifi6 if we had it. I work mostly on a 15" MacBook Pro which I believe has a 3x3 wireless card in it - I can see a Tx Rate of about 1300Mbps when connected to the Mesh unit. I also test on this mostly using the SpeedTest CLI tool and get like-for-like speeds to my phone.

 

 

 

I have a Plex Server running on a Mac Mini which is the only device with Ethernet built in that we own. That's what get's 700-800mbit using the SpeedTest CLI tool. This server obviously streams movies and tv around the house when we use it and at the moment it's the only method of getting live TV (I have it setup with the TellyTV IPTV Proxy streaming Freeview that way).

 

 

 

We have an AppleTV in the kids room connected to an older (not-smart) TV and this was connecting to 2.4Ghz by default, even though it's in the next room to the garage so it shouldn't need to. Anyway this is why I switched off the 2.4 network for now so it could be forced onto 5Ghz. Weirdly the AppleTV get's some of the worse reception out of any device, I'm guessing it just has a poor quality wireless card built in. It ticks along fine though at about 68-70dBm (according to Smart Modem).

 

 

 

Other devices are other iPhones, iPads and my wifes MacBook Pro plus 2x Smart TVs.

 

 

 

It is a bummer I can't do more on Ethernet, the house came wired this way by default and although we did change I few things I decided not to spec any more cables due to cost and I figured at the time I would just have mesh wifi everywhere anyway so there was no need. I didn't think that the mesh units themselves would be better being ethernet connected but hey, lesson learned for next time! I don't mind putting them up a bit higher anyway but just means we need to get some little wall shelves to put them on.

 

 

 

 


Jase2985
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  #2563899 14-Sep-2020 17:55
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the TX rate you see does not equate to real world speed, you would normally see about half of that in your real world speed.


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