Canadian TV, Computing and Home Theatre Forums banner

1 - 16 of 16 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
103 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I have been on a 25 Mbps (download) VDSL plan for several years, and recently took advantage of a promotion with my ISP to upgrade to 50 Mbps at the same price. When I had the 25 Mbps plan, I always got the full speed.

However, since the upgrade to 50, I am only getting about 39 Mbps. I've been on the phone with my ISP for several days over this last week trying to figure out why. The support tech finally decided it must be either my modem (TP Link TD W-9980) or the inside wiring of my basement suite.

I have cat5e cable running from my modem to the wall outlet located in the dining area (approx. 30 ft. from my computer desk with the modem) and there is another approx. 30 feet from the dining room to the outside wall demarc line. I figure this should not be the problem, but possibly there is something wrong with the internal wiring of the suite. A Telus tech came out to test the line to demarc and it was working fine and getting about 56 Mbps. My modem is syncing at 43 Mbps, but the throughput results in only 39 Mbps.

I've tried resetting my modem to factory default, but that did not help. Could it possibly be my modem? It's only about 5 or 6 years old.

Or is it really the internal building wiring?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,246 Posts
That's often an issue with ADSL. They say "up to" as actual performance depends on your line, distance to DSLAM, etc.. However, given the tech was able to get 56 Mb at the demarc, then there could be a problem with the wiring in your home. I don't know how old your wiring is, but it likely wasn't installed with ADSL in mind. Running new cable from the demarc to the modem may help. As an experiment, can you connect the modem directly to the demarc?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
90 Posts
In addition to what JamesK said, check if your RJ-11 cable is properly seated and doesn't run next to any electrical wiring. These cables are highly susceptible to electrical interference since they normally don't have special shielding.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
103 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
That's often an issue with ADSL. They say "up to" as actual performance depends on your line, distance to DSLAM, etc.. However, given the tech was able to get 56 Mb at the demarc, then there could be a problem with the wiring in your home. I don't know how old your wiring is, but it likely wasn't installed with ADSL in mind. Running new cable from the demarc to the modem may help. As an experiment, can you connect the modem directly to the demarc?
Yes, even with cable internet, all ISPs advertise as "up to X speed". One would think it would be a little closer to the 50 Mbps speed though.

I live in a basement suite in a duplex. It was built in the early 1980s. I don't think I would know which cable would be the demarc. It comes in through an unfinished laundry/boiler room where there is an electrical panel box and a whole nest of cables running through to my suite as well as to the upstairs tenant. This laundry room is on the very opposite end of the suite from my living room where I have my modem. The wall outlet where I have my cat5e cable plugged in is on the front side of an indented bathroom wall that sort of divides the living space about halfway between the modem in the living room and the demarc in the laundry/boiler room.

In addition to what JamesK said, check if your RJ-11 cable is properly seated and doesn't run next to any electrical wiring. These cables are highly susceptible to electrical interference since they normally don't have special shielding.
I thought cat5e cables were shielded?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
90 Posts
I thought cat5e cables were shielded?
CAT5e cables do have some shielding.
Correction: CAT5e don't have shielding, unless they're STP cables. Thanks JamesK for correcting me.

But now, I'm confused. When you talk about a CAT5e cable, are you talking about the telephone cable (the one plugged in the DSL/VDSL/WAN port of your modem) or the network cable (typically Ethernet or LAN ports)?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
103 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
CAT5e cables do have some shielding.

But now, I'm confused. When you talk about a CAT5e cable, are you talking about the telephone cable (the one plugged in the DSL/VDSL/WAN port of your modem) or the network cable (typically Ethernet or LAN ports)?
Yes. The cable that runs from my the VDSL port on my modem to the wall outlet. I have CAT5e cables with RJ11 connectors on them. I bought these specifically because they were considered to be shielded cables, and I needed a long length. At the time I got them several years ago (I have a few different lengths), I figured I could either place my modem near the wall outlet and run long ethernet cables to my desktop PC, or place my modem near my PC and run long CAT5e cables from my modem to the wall outlet. I chose the latter, since it's more convenient for me to have the modem near my PC.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
103 Posts
Discussion Starter #9
Most are not. Normal cable is Unshielded Twisted Pair (UTP), but there is also Sheilded Twisted Pair (STP) cable.
Right, thanks. I forgot. These were STP cat5, yes. At the time, they were hard to find at a good price, so I ended up buying them from a guy on eBay in the UK who sold STP cat5e cables with RJ11 plugs in custom lengths for a decent price.

Ok, so this morning I just tried moving my modem right next to the wall outlet with a short 3 ft cat5e cable (instead of the 30 ft cable) to see if it would make any difference. And nope, I'm still getting 38-39 Mbps. So I know now it's not the cable length.

The bottleneck is still either my modem, or the building's internal wiring.

I've been thinking of maybe getting a new modem anyway, regardless, since this one lies horizontal and gets quite hot underneath (and heats the desk). I might get a vertical standing one instead, which takes up less desk space and dissipates the heat out the side instead of the bottom.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
56,458 Posts
Good to know, thanks. Does the speed vary during peak times?
With most large cable ISPs, they provide the end customer with the speed they pay for. Their infrastructure is designed for Gb/sec (or similar) service for most areas and therefore anyone at lower than Gigabit speeds typically gets what they pay for.

For example, I'm with Rogers and typically get 500 down, 22 up on my 300/20 plan. This is due to "speedboost" for the first few seconds, after which the modem will ramp down to the speed you pay for on long (large) downloads.

There are occasional areas with more customers per node that may encounter slower speeds at peak times, however, the ISP usually monitors this and addresses the situation since people want what they pay for.

Good luck with your issue.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,246 Posts
For example, I'm with Rogers and typically get 500 down, 22 up on my 300/20 plan.
I'm also on Rogers and typically get low 90s down and 11 up on my 75/10 plan.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,704 Posts
Cable internet is not VDSL. VDSL is more sensitive to distance from the DSL node and cable quality. Actual speeds are often lower than advertised speeds.

It sounds like some more troubleshooting is needed. Running the 30' CAT5e cable to the laundry/boiler room or moving the modem there will determine if the issue is the building wiring. That may require tracing the wiring and connecting a temporary telephone plug in that room. If the speed goes up to 56Kbps then the building wiring is the issue.

There are differences between modems so a newer model or different make could overcome the issue. Trying a "loaner" or trying the existing modem on a known good line could help determine where the issue lies. I would troubleshoot the wiring first.

CAT5e is not usually shielded but the wires are twisted in pairs to CAT5e specifications. This significantly reduces noise pickup compared to the standard, untwisted telephone cable often used in the 1980s. Shielding is not usually required unless the environment is unusually noisy. CAT6 improves on CAT5e by providing increased separation of the pairs. It provides reduced cross talk between pairs but not reduced noise pickup with the external environment like shielding does.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
103 Posts
Discussion Starter #15
With most large cable ISPs, they provide the end customer with the speed they pay for. Their infrastructure is designed for Gb/sec (or similar) service for most areas and therefore anyone at lower than Gigabit speeds typically gets what they pay for.

For example, I'm with Rogers and typically get 500 down, 22 up on my 300/20 plan. This is due to "speedboost" for the first few seconds, after which the modem will ramp down to the speed you pay for on long (large) downloads.

There are occasional areas with more customers per node that may encounter slower speeds at peak times, however, the ISP usually monitors this and addresses the situation since people want what they pay for.

Good luck with your issue.
Thanks, I switched from coax cable to VDSL precisely because I was almost never getting the advertised speeds from Shaw, and their fees kept going up. It would always slow down from about 5:00pm to about midnight. I can't remember what plan I was on (this was 5 years ago), but I think it was around 20 or 25. I remember feeling so relieved when I got my VDSL as the speed was always a steady 25 Mbps and never went down.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
103 Posts
Discussion Starter #16
I noticed my modem gets quite hot after it's been on for a while. Could the modem be throttling the speed?
 
1 - 16 of 16 Posts
Top