Powerline speed poor

MrMister111

Well-known Member
I thought buying powerline would be a good upgrade from just WiFi but I've done some tests and not particularly happy, anyone else the same?

I've now just got upgraded to 38Mbps Fibre. I use a iMac and a Apple Airport Extreme base station for the better (I thought) WiFi

However using WiFi on my iPhone 6+ right next to the extreme I only get, using the speedtest app, around 18Mbps.

Using powerline adapter on my iMac, I'm only getting around 20Mbps, tested using the speedtest website. I've tried this with WiFi off, at various times of day and night etc.

I know that powerline won't be as fast as direct Ethernet, and it will use overheads etc, but was hoping for better than this. They are 500Mb powerline adapters. Does anyone have any experience, or is this the moral and what I should expect.

Thanks
 

cjed

Well-known Member
A few points - what speedtest results do you get from your iMac if it's directly connected to your router (rather than via Powerline) ? 38Mbps is the maximum you can get from your internet connection, your actual connection might be significantly less.

I've used a number of different Powerline units, from the original 85 Mbps up to the latest 1200 Mbps units. You are never going to get close to the manufacturer's connection (link) speeds in terms of actual data throughput. For 500Mbps units I was getting real data throughputs between 60 and 70Mbps, with the 1200Mbps units that's now up to 140 - 150Mbps.

However, as with WiFi (perhaps even more than with WiFi), Powerline installation are significantly affected by environmental issues. These include mains wiring topology, mains wiring quality, distance between units, and what else is plugged into the mains.

Having said that, you should perhaps do some tests of just the Powerline link to see how it's performing, rather than a combination of the Powerline link and your internet connection.
 

MrMister111

Well-known Member
A few points - what speedtest results do you get from your iMac if it's directly connected to your router (rather than via Powerline) ? 38Mbps is the maximum you can get from your internet connection, your actual connection might be significantly less.
Connected direct from my iMac to the Sky router, and WiFi switched off on the extreme, I get 29-32Mbps, is this what I can expect from Sky on a quoted 38Mbps line?
I've used a number of different Powerline units, from the original 85 Mbps up to the latest 1200 Mbps units. You are never going to get close to the manufacturer's connection (link) speeds in terms of actual data throughput. For 500Mbps units I was getting real data throughputs between 60 and 70Mbps, with the 1200Mbps units that's now up to 140 - 150Mbps.
Wow so thats pretty poor in terms of % of speed, around 12-14% of the actual unit speed, which I know you never ever get but expected a bit more than that though. Mine works out at a lot less than your 500 powerlines though, you 60-70, me 15-20, massive difference. Its a 10 year old house so wiring isn't old, the power lines are on same floor about 4M apart.
Having said that, you should perhaps do some tests of just the Powerline link to see how it's performing, rather than a combination of the Powerline link and your internet connection.
How will I do this?

I've upgraded to Fibre so I can enjoy better speeds overall in the house, the speedtests I did previously weren't much different to what I'm getting now so its almost a waste. Cant really complain to Sky as at the router it states I'm getting 38Mbps, and direct wired connection its around 29-32Mbps (is this enough for what I can expect?)
 

Rossmartin

Active Member
Fibre speeds are very rarely what they say you will get as they still us copper from the cabinet to your house. The fibre only goes to the cabinet from the exchange.

Wifi will always be on the low side as when you run encryption on the wifi network you lose around half because of the encryption overhead.

With regards to powerlines I have never had a good experience with them. I have had my house rewired and the speeds are poor and the devices randomly stops working. Only unplugging it and plugging it in again after five minutes fixes it!
 

lostuser

Active Member
Sky quote Up to 38Mbit. They don't say it will be exactly 38Mbit. I ordered the BT up to 76Mbit Infinity connection and it would only sync at about 36Mbit due to distance to the cabinet (I assume). I called them up and dropped down to the up to 38Mbit service as there was no point paying for the faster service when I couldn't get the speed.

I also use powerlines and regularly get about 36Mbit throughput for downloads. My powerlines aren't even on the same circuit. I have the up to 500Mbit powerlines.

I assume you don't have either powerline plugged in to an extension lead or multi-way adapter? They should both be plugged directly in to the wall socket.
 

MrMister111

Well-known Member
Sky quote Up to 38Mbit. They don't say it will be exactly 38Mbit. I ordered the BT up to 76Mbit Infinity connection and it would only sync at about 36Mbit due to distance to the cabinet (I assume). I called them up and dropped down to the up to 38Mbit service as there was no point paying for the faster service when I couldn't get the speed.

I also use powerlines and regularly get about 36Mbit throughput for downloads. My powerlines aren't even on the same circuit. I have the up to 500Mbit powerlines.

I assume you don't have either powerline plugged in to an extension lead or multi-way adapter? They should both be plugged directly in to the wall socket.
Your correct, quoted sometimes isn't what exactly get. My Sky router in the config page says 38 download, 9 upload (btw my upload speeds via powerline are what they state, 9). I tested this by moving my computer to within distance of the Sky router, switched off WiFi, direct cable to Sky router, and used speedtest, it felt and was noticeably faster on page loads as well, got 29-32Mbps.

I agree, the speed of the powerline at the moment, I may as well drop back to normal non fibre, as it's at that speed so I'm seeing no real world benefit.

Both adapters are directly plugged into walls yes, no extension leads.
 

wormvortex

Member
Fibre speeds are very rarely what they say you will get as they still us copper from the cabinet to your house. The fibre only goes to the cabinet from the exchange.

Wifi will always be on the low side as when you run encryption on the wifi network you lose around half because of the encryption overhead.

With regards to powerlines I have never had a good experience with them. I have had my house rewired and the speeds are poor and the devices randomly stops working. Only unplugging it and plugging it in again after five minutes fixes it!
Fibre speeds are normally above what they predict as the predictions are very conservative.
 

Rossmartin

Active Member
I think we will agree to disagree as on the many fibre installations I have been a part of we have never got the speeds quoted unless it was fibre leased lines!
 

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