Are there better ADSL modem routers out there?

Discussion in 'UK VOIP' started by Bypass, Jan 5, 2007.

  1. Bypass

    Bypass Guest

    I'm only a few yards from the BT exchange. I'm with MAAF on their 8Mb
    Max account and I'm getting a download speed in the region of 5Mb.

    What's the likelihood of increasing my download speed by a) upgrading my
    router's firmware and/or b) by getting a 'better' modem/router? If
    that's an option, who are the market leaders?

    The service is quite solid at the moment, but I use VoIP for my calls
    (voip.co.uk) and occasionally I get drop-outs.
    Bypass, Jan 5, 2007
    #1
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  2. In article <>,
    Bypass <> wrote:
    >I'm only a few yards from the BT exchange. I'm with MAAF on their 8Mb
    >Max account and I'm getting a download speed in the region of 5Mb.


    What does your modem actually sync at? If it's syncing at 8Mb and you're
    only getting 5Mb then it's either a BT virtual-path capacity problem in
    your exchange (remember you're 50:1 anyway) or theres issues insude your
    ISP. Upgrading your modem won't help any of these, so start by looking
    at your ADSL hardware and seeing what it's giving.

    Gordon
    Gordon Henderson, Jan 5, 2007
    #2
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  3. Bypass

    Al Dykes Guest

    In article <>,
    Bypass <> wrote:
    >I'm only a few yards from the BT exchange. I'm with MAAF on their 8Mb
    >Max account and I'm getting a download speed in the region of 5Mb.
    >
    >What's the likelihood of increasing my download speed by a) upgrading my
    >router's firmware and/or b) by getting a 'better' modem/router? If
    >that's an option, who are the market leaders?
    >
    >The service is quite solid at the moment, but I use VoIP for my calls
    >(voip.co.uk) and occasionally I get drop-outs.



    For your VOIP problem, I'd look at your uplink speed. Others may be
    able to comment on features that apply to QoS for voice. I'd
    like to hear if any exist.

    I'm of the opinion that 8Mb/sec is a walk in the park for any modern,
    properly functioning modem/router combo. It's not that fast.

    You can use XP's pathping command to show ping times and dropped
    packet counts between your PC and any host service on the net you have
    problems with. An occassional dropped packet isn't bad, but most of
    the time there should be none.

    The echo times should be examined as a source of problems for VOIP,
    but the solution is probably upstream and you have to address it via
    your ISP.







    --
    a d y k e s @ p a n i x . c o m
    Harrison for Congress in NY 13CD www.harrison06.com
    Don't blame me. I voted for Gore. A Proud signature since 2001
    Al Dykes, Jan 5, 2007
    #3
  4. Bypass

    Ted B Guest

    Bypass wrote:

    > I'm only a few yards from the BT exchange. I'm with MAAF on their 8Mb
    > Max account and I'm getting a download speed in the region of 5Mb.


    Where are you getting this download speed from?

    What is the signal strength, SNR, downlink and uplink speed shown as?
    Ted B, Jan 5, 2007
    #4
  5. Bypass

    Bypass Guest

    Gordon Henderson wrote:
    > In article <>,
    > Bypass <> wrote:
    >> I'm only a few yards from the BT exchange. I'm with MAAF on their 8Mb
    >> Max account and I'm getting a download speed in the region of 5Mb.

    >
    > What does your modem actually sync at? If it's syncing at 8Mb and you're
    > only getting 5Mb then it's either a BT virtual-path capacity problem in
    > your exchange (remember you're 50:1 anyway) or theres issues insude your
    > ISP. Upgrading your modem won't help any of these, so start by looking
    > at your ADSL hardware and seeing what it's giving.
    >



    Modem Status

    Link Status Connected
    Us Rate (Kbps) 448
    Ds Rate (Kbps) 8128
    US Margin 25
    DS Margin 13
    Modulation MMODE
    LOS Errors 0
    DS Line Attenuation 15
    US Line Attenuation 14
    Path Mode Interleaved

    Gordon, I take it that this is exactly what you mean?
    Bypass, Jan 5, 2007
    #5
  6. Bypass

    Eeyore Guest

    Bypass wrote:

    > Gordon Henderson wrote:
    > > In article <>,
    > > Bypass <> wrote:
    > >> I'm only a few yards from the BT exchange. I'm with MAAF on their 8Mb
    > >> Max account and I'm getting a download speed in the region of 5Mb.

    > >
    > > What does your modem actually sync at? If it's syncing at 8Mb and you're
    > > only getting 5Mb then it's either a BT virtual-path capacity problem in
    > > your exchange (remember you're 50:1 anyway) or theres issues insude your
    > > ISP. Upgrading your modem won't help any of these, so start by looking
    > > at your ADSL hardware and seeing what it's giving.

    >
    > Modem Status
    >
    > Link Status Connected
    > Us Rate (Kbps) 448
    > Ds Rate (Kbps) 8128
    > US Margin 25
    > DS Margin 13
    > Modulation MMODE
    > LOS Errors 0
    > DS Line Attenuation 15
    > US Line Attenuation 14
    > Path Mode Interleaved
    >
    > Gordon, I take it that this is exactly what you mean?


    Now go here....
    http://speedtester.bt.com/

    Be patient, it's crap and run the test until it gives you some data rates and
    your *profile*.

    If your profile's 7150kbps and it likely is - any speed issues aren't the ADSL
    connection at all.

    In any case 'only' 5M is very good.

    Graham
    Eeyore, Jan 5, 2007
    #6
  7. Bypass

    Guy Dawson Guest

    Bypass wrote:
    > Gordon Henderson wrote:
    >> In article <>,
    >> Bypass <> wrote:
    >>> I'm only a few yards from the BT exchange. I'm with MAAF on their
    >>> 8Mb Max account and I'm getting a download speed in the region of 5Mb.

    >>
    >> What does your modem actually sync at? If it's syncing at 8Mb and you're
    >> only getting 5Mb then it's either a BT virtual-path capacity problem in
    >> your exchange (remember you're 50:1 anyway) or theres issues insude your
    >> ISP. Upgrading your modem won't help any of these, so start by looking
    >> at your ADSL hardware and seeing what it's giving.
    >>

    >
    >
    > Modem Status
    >
    > Link Status Connected
    > Us Rate (Kbps) 448
    > Ds Rate (Kbps) 8128


    8128Kbps is the maximum line speed. You've got a very fast ADSL
    connection and a different router won't increase this speed.

    > US Margin 25
    > DS Margin 13
    > Modulation MMODE
    > LOS Errors 0
    > DS Line Attenuation 15
    > US Line Attenuation 14
    > Path Mode Interleaved


    The Margin figures (aka signal to noise ratio) are good as are your
    line attenuation figures.

    Am I right in thinking your download speed of 5Mbps is from a download
    test tool?

    Given the high quality of your basic ADSL connection (8Mbps) the cause
    of your lower download speed (5Mbps) is to be found further up the
    network. Given that you're getting VoIP dropouts I suspect congestion
    further up the network.

    Unfortunately there's little you can do sort of changing to a service
    with a better than 50:1 contention ratio.

    >
    > Gordon, I take it that this is exactly what you mean?



    --
    Guy
    -- --------------------------------------------------------------------
    Guy Dawson I.T. Manager Crossflight Ltd
    Guy Dawson, Jan 5, 2007
    #7
  8. Eeyore wrote:
    >
    > Bypass wrote:
    >
    >> Gordon Henderson wrote:
    >>> In article <>,
    >>> Bypass <> wrote:
    >>>> I'm only a few yards from the BT exchange. I'm with MAAF on their 8Mb
    >>>> Max account and I'm getting a download speed in the region of 5Mb.
    >>> What does your modem actually sync at? If it's syncing at 8Mb and you're
    >>> only getting 5Mb then it's either a BT virtual-path capacity problem in
    >>> your exchange (remember you're 50:1 anyway) or theres issues insude your
    >>> ISP. Upgrading your modem won't help any of these, so start by looking
    >>> at your ADSL hardware and seeing what it's giving.

    >> Modem Status
    >>
    >> Link Status Connected
    >> Us Rate (Kbps) 448
    >> Ds Rate (Kbps) 8128
    >> US Margin 25
    >> DS Margin 13
    >> Modulation MMODE
    >> LOS Errors 0
    >> DS Line Attenuation 15
    >> US Line Attenuation 14
    >> Path Mode Interleaved
    >>
    >> Gordon, I take it that this is exactly what you mean?

    >
    > Now go here....
    > http://speedtester.bt.com/
    >
    > Be patient, it's crap and run the test until it gives you some data rates and
    > your *profile*.
    >
    > If your profile's 7150kbps and it likely is - any speed issues aren't the ADSL
    > connection at all.
    >
    > In any case 'only' 5M is very good.
    >
    > Graham
    >

    I live only 70m from the local exchange and get the same 448 and 8128.
    My modem router is currently on the end of about 50 feet of very poor
    looking extension wire. I usually get 4 - 5 megs but occasionally 6.5
    I suspect local contention is the problem. Alternatively Newnet could be
    a bit overwhelmed. They have just greatly increased their prices for
    heavy users to protect their network.
    The Invisible Man, Jan 5, 2007
    #8
  9. Bypass

    Al Dykes Guest

    In article <sDxnh.53378$>,
    Nick <> wrote:
    >
    >"Ted B" <> wrote in message
    >news:...
    >> Bypass wrote:
    >>
    >> > I'm only a few yards from the BT exchange. I'm with MAAF on their 8Mb
    >> > Max account and I'm getting a download speed in the region of 5Mb.

    >>
    >> Where are you getting this download speed from?
    >>
    >> What is the signal strength, SNR, downlink and uplink speed shown as?

    >
    >Not necessarily in answer to this question, but it may help and can be
    >applied in any ADSL configuration.
    >The use of good quality filters and better still "active" rather than
    >passive
    >filters can improve the quality of connection dramatically.
    >For best results do not use a filter.
    >If you need to use a filter, place the filter where the line enters the
    >premises,
    >"Y" off at this point and use one leg for all telephony and the other line
    >for all data.
    >You'll only need one filter in this scenario and therefore reduce losses.
    >
    >



    Try removing all phone devices other than your modem and run speed
    tests. If you see a speed improvement, put the phones back one at a
    time, test, and see if one of the phones is a problem.



    --
    a d y k e s @ p a n i x . c o m
    Harrison for Congress in NY 13CD www.harrison06.com
    Don't blame me. I voted for Gore. A Proud signature since 2001
    Al Dykes, Jan 5, 2007
    #9
  10. Bypass

    Nick Guest

    "Ted B" <> wrote in message
    news:...
    > Bypass wrote:
    >
    > > I'm only a few yards from the BT exchange. I'm with MAAF on their 8Mb
    > > Max account and I'm getting a download speed in the region of 5Mb.

    >
    > Where are you getting this download speed from?
    >
    > What is the signal strength, SNR, downlink and uplink speed shown as?


    Not necessarily in answer to this question, but it may help and can be
    applied in any ADSL configuration.
    The use of good quality filters and better still "active" rather than
    passive
    filters can improve the quality of connection dramatically.
    For best results do not use a filter.
    If you need to use a filter, place the filter where the line enters the
    premises,
    "Y" off at this point and use one leg for all telephony and the other line
    for all data.
    You'll only need one filter in this scenario and therefore reduce losses.
    Nick, Jan 5, 2007
    #10
  11. Bypass

    Tx2 Guest

    In article <>,
    thought we might be interested in
    the following...

    > Now go here....
    > http://speedtester.bt.com/
    >
    > Be patient


    How patient? 5 minutes, 10 minutes?


    --
    My reply address is invalid
    Please post replies to the group...
    Tx2, Jan 5, 2007
    #11
  12. Bypass

    NoNeedToKnow Guest

    On 05 Jan 2007, "Nick" <> wrote:

    >For best results do not use a filter.


    Hmmmm... exactly what I tried today (three routers, two filters, and
    a few spare cables) when visiting friends whose ADSL stopped working
    on 28/12. Tech Support (on an 0845, not sure where) guy was rather
    negative when I mentioned I had tried three routers, with and without
    using filters (I had at least one cable with RJ11 to BT plug) and was
    of the opinion there should always be a filter... My guess is that
    ISPs drum it into all staff to stress this to customers.
    NoNeedToKnow, Jan 5, 2007
    #12
  13. Bypass

    Eeyore Guest

    Tx2 wrote:

    > thought we might be interested in
    > the following...
    >
    > > Now go here....
    > > http://speedtester.bt.com/
    > >
    > > Be patient

    >
    > How patient? 5 minutes, 10 minutes?


    After that long try again in an hour. I know, it's rubbish. If you persevere
    though it will eventually give you your bras ? profile. I don't know of any
    other way to find out that info.

    Graham
    Eeyore, Jan 5, 2007
    #13
  14. Bypass

    Nick Guest

    "NoNeedToKnow" <> wrote in message
    news:...
    > On 05 Jan 2007, "Nick" <> wrote:
    >
    > >For best results do not use a filter.

    >
    > Hmmmm... exactly what I tried today (three routers, two filters, and
    > a few spare cables) when visiting friends whose ADSL stopped working
    > on 28/12. Tech Support (on an 0845, not sure where) guy was rather
    > negative when I mentioned I had tried three routers, with and without
    > using filters (I had at least one cable with RJ11 to BT plug) and was
    > of the opinion there should always be a filter... My guess is that
    > ISPs drum it into all staff to stress this to customers.


    The "filter" removes the high frequency audio tones that carry the data
    and thus allows normal telephone usage to run simultaneously without
    the tones being heard.
    If the connection to the ADSL line does not have the need for a normal
    telephone, or the ADSL tones do not interfere (hearing loss) with the
    use of the telephone, or is only used a fax line, then the filter serves
    no purpose.

    "Tech Support" types are usually following scripts and have little or
    no technical knowledge.
    Nick, Jan 6, 2007
    #14
  15. Bypass

    Jono Guest

    Nick wrote:

    > If the connection to the ADSL line does not have the need for a normal
    > telephone, or the ADSL tones do not interfere (hearing loss) with the
    > use of the telephone, or is only used a fax line, then the filter serves
    > no purpose.


    I beg to differ. If you don't filter a fax machine, ADSL won't work
    reliably.
    Jono, Jan 6, 2007
    #15
  16. In article <>,
    Bypass <> wrote:
    >Gordon Henderson wrote:
    >> In article <>,
    >> Bypass <> wrote:
    >>> I'm only a few yards from the BT exchange. I'm with MAAF on their 8Mb
    >>> Max account and I'm getting a download speed in the region of 5Mb.

    >>
    >> What does your modem actually sync at? If it's syncing at 8Mb and you're
    >> only getting 5Mb then it's either a BT virtual-path capacity problem in
    >> your exchange (remember you're 50:1 anyway) or theres issues insude your
    >> ISP. Upgrading your modem won't help any of these, so start by looking
    >> at your ADSL hardware and seeing what it's giving.

    >
    >Modem Status
    >
    >Link Status Connected
    >Us Rate (Kbps) 448
    >Ds Rate (Kbps) 8128
    >US Margin 25
    >DS Margin 13
    >Modulation MMODE
    >LOS Errors 0
    >DS Line Attenuation 15
    >US Line Attenuation 14
    >Path Mode Interleaved
    >
    >Gordon, I take it that this is exactly what you mean?


    Indeed. your modem has connected to your exchange at the max. rate
    possible, so any slowdown in data transfers is happening elsewhere and
    I think others have posted info about finding this out. You might want
    to see if your own ISP has a local speed-test faciltiy, or has facilities
    to let you know what your actual max rate is (knows as your BRAS profile)
    which will never be more than 7150Kbps (IIRC).

    (so all this up to 8Mb is bullshit anyway)

    Gordon
    Gordon Henderson, Jan 6, 2007
    #16
  17. Bypass

    Bypass Guest

    Thanks everyone for the really useful contributions

    As header
    Bypass, Jan 6, 2007
    #17
  18. Bypass

    Tx2 Guest

    In article <>,
    thought we might be interested in
    the following...


    > After that long try again in an hour. I know, it's rubbish. If you persevere
    > though it will eventually give you your bras ? profile. I don't know of any
    > other way to find out that info.


    oh, is that all if gives you, along with your speed? My ISP gives you
    that info (and then some) via my account pages anyway.

    --
    My reply address is invalid
    Please post replies to the group...
    Tx2, Jan 6, 2007
    #18
  19. Bypass

    JohnDW Guest

    Nick, in article <BnJnh.54240$>,
    says...
    >
    >The "filter" removes the high frequency audio tones that carry the data
    >and thus allows normal telephone usage to run simultaneously without
    >the tones being heard.
    >If the connection to the ADSL line does not have the need for a normal
    >telephone, ... then the filter serves no purpose.


    Agreed, up to here (actually, almost no purpose, there is one,
    see * below)

    >or the ADSL tones do not interfere (hearing loss) with the
    >use of the telephone, or is only used a fax line, then the filter serves
    >no purpose.


    But don't forget the filter serves the purposes of stopping
    the DSL part of the signal from entering the telephone set and
    so seeing a mismatched load. The expected load for the radio
    frequency DSL signal is the single filter in *one* DSL modem.
    Without a filter, and with telephone-type devices connected,
    you will be dividing the DSL's signal strength between
    multiple destinations thereby reducing the power available to
    the DSL modem. The telephone-type device or the user may not
    care about the DSL signal, but the modem will probably object
    to the reduced signal level.

    Similarly, connecting more than one DSL modem will result in
    the DSL signal power being divided between each receiver load
    on the downstream part. This happens if you connect multiple
    routers, each with its own DSL modem, to the phone line even
    if you don't have any filters and telephone devices. The
    upstream part will also have multiple transmitters, probably
    interfering with each other. It may work, depending on the
    signal power levels, etc. but isn't recommended. Hence, the
    call centre is correct in their general diagnosis - fit only
    one modem/router (or USB modem, if you must...)

    The filters also work in the reverse direction. They reduce
    any high frequency interference generated by the telephone set
    from getting onto the lines. This is, typically, switch hook
    noise from normal handsets and RF noise from some cordless
    handsets, thermostats and whatever else you have in the home.
    The first of these is a direct switching of the line current,
    so contains many harmonics that will interfere with the DSL
    part of the signal.

    * The ADSL line can pick up radio frequency and impulse
    interference which can cause problems for the DSL part of the
    signal. Hence, it is practically always better to get the
    combined input converted into separate digital (Ethernet or
    WiFi) and the voice signals as soon as possible. Hence the
    recommendations to fit a single, preferably active, faceplate
    filter to the master socket and installing a router directly
    to the filter's DSL output. At least, this way you won't be
    sending the DSL RF signal around your multiple socket house
    wiring alongside the unbalanced ring signal on "pin 3"

    >"Tech Support" types are usually following scripts and have little or
    >no technical knowledge.


    Which, in this case, doesn't seen too bad, given they aren't
    able to quickly assess the technical expertise of the caller
    or get involved in long discussions of why it is a generally a
    bad idea to diverge from the accepted practice...

    --
    JohnW.
    Replace nospam with the first 3 letters of the current month
    to mail me.
    JohnDW, Jan 6, 2007
    #19
  20. Bypass

    jasee Guest

    Nick wrote:
    > "Ted B" <> wrote in message
    > news:...
    >> Bypass wrote:
    >>
    >>> I'm only a few yards from the BT exchange. I'm with MAAF on their
    >>> 8Mb Max account and I'm getting a download speed in the region of
    >>> 5Mb.

    >>
    >> Where are you getting this download speed from?
    >>
    >> What is the signal strength, SNR, downlink and uplink speed shown
    >> as?

    >
    > Not necessarily in answer to this question, but it may help and can be
    > applied in any ADSL configuration.
    > The use of good quality filters and better still "active" rather than
    > passive
    > filters can improve the quality of connection dramatically.


    Don't undertand this, all the filters I've looked at are passive there are
    no active components.
    jasee, Jan 6, 2007
    #20
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