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Advice on download speeds please.

colmcam
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Registered: 20-10-2014

Advice on download speeds please.

I wonder if knowledgeable forum members could advise?
I have recently migrated to Plusnet (Unlimited Broadband & Phone) as my old ISP could not offer FTTC and its tech support was poor, FTTC is being rolled out in my rural South Scotland area but there is no date for my local Exchange as yet so I am currently on ADSL (20CN).  I am using a 4 year old Belkin Surf  F7D1401UK ADSL Router which gives just about reasonable Wi-Fi coverage in our Victorian cottage,  I have not yet transferred to the Plusnet Router as I am a bit concerned  about the feedback  about  its Wi-Fi coverage on this forum and elsewhere. I do have a new TP-Link TD –W8970 still in its box.
Plusnet’s estimate of my line speed was 8MB (I am very near the Exchange) and they give my current line speed as 5.5MB, my actual download speed (from Thinkbroadband and Ookla) is usually just below 5MB, and it does deteriorate at times .
My Router ADSL stats today are:
Data rate (Kbps):  6400 Downstream, 448 Upstream
Noise Margin:  15 Downstream, 26 Upstream
Output Power (dBm):  12 Downstream, 10 Upstream
Attenuation (dB):  6 Downstream, 0 Upstream
The BT Wholesale  Diagnostic Speed Test today gives:
Download Speed: 4.72 Mbps
Acceptable range of speeds: 0.6 Mbps-7.15 Mbps
DSL Connection Rate: 6.4 Mbps Downstream 0.45 Mbps Upstream
IP Profile: 5 Mbps
Obviously, I would like a higher download speed but I think that I may have inherited old internal wiring problems which I cannot identify although the BT Quiet Line Test is OK. I have an old LJU Master socket which the Router and phone (and nothing else) plug into directly, via a filter. The Master Socket is inset into the wall next to a power socket so I can’t tell what wires lead into it and of course there is no test socket. There are old (unneeded by us) extension sockets in various rooms, one is live but the rest are dead.
Is there anything  Plusnet can do at their end to improve the sync speed, would installing the Plusnet router help? 
Should the internal wiring be professionally checked by Openreach and a modern NTE5Master Socket installed?  I’m not sure if Openreach would consider my problem their responsibility, if not, their charges are extremely high!
Any advice, comments etc gratefully received.
20 REPLIES
Superuser
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Re: Advice on download speeds please.

Quote
but I think that I may have inherited old internal wiring problems
That would appear to be the case. You have a very short line
Quote
Attenuation (dB):  6 Downstream, 0 Upstream
and really should be getting the full 8Mb available on 20CN.
Quote
There are old (unneeded by us) extension sockets in various rooms, one is live but the rest are dead.
The live one is very likely the cause of some of your problems confirmed by your high downstream noise margin
Quote
Noise Margin:  15 Downstream, 26 Upstream
. If the ring wire is connected to the extension sockets then this will act as an aerial and introduce noise to the ADSL signal.
Is it possible to gently unscrew the master and extension faceplates and take some pictures of the wiring ? we may be able to advise if a simple removal of the ring wire is feasible. 
colmcam
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Re: Advice on download speeds please.

Mister W.
Thanks for your response and I do appreciate your comments. However, I have to admit I'm a bit wary about taking a screwdriver to the LJU Master Socket, although I will do it if it is the only option. It is in a really awkward corner, inset into the wall near the floor, and I don't want to ruin my connection by making a mistake!  Also, I suppose that technically  it is the property of BTOR?
Regards
Superuser
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Re: Advice on download speeds please.

Quote
Also, I suppose that technically  it is the property of BTOR?
You're correct, technically it is, but getting them to sort out your wiring and put in a proper NTE5 is not easy. If they are called out to investigate a fault then they'll likely replace it but your speeds are probably not far eneough from the estimate for them to accept a fault.
If you are not confident about taking the faceplate of the master , then what about the faceplate on the live extension ? is that more accessible , a picture of the wiring behind that would probably confirm if the ring wire is or isn't connected and thus whether any further investigation of the master is useful.
colmcam
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Re: Advice on download speeds please.

MisterW
Attached, I hope, is a photo of the live extension socket taken with my tablet.
Thanks
Plusnet Help Team
Plusnet Help Team
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Re: Advice on download speeds please.

Hi,
ADSL is designed to operate at the fastest possible speeds according to line conditions. With that in mind think of it as being reactive rather than something that could be "turned up" for want of a better phrase.
I've just performed a line test from here which didn't show any obvious issues or detect noise on the line external to your property so I'd focus your attention on your internal wiring.
If you do make any changes to it let us know as we can then perform an SNR reset which would re-train the line. That could mean improved speeds if as we assume the internal wiring is problematic at the moment.
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 Adam Walker
 Plusnet Help Team
Superuser
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Re: Advice on download speeds please.

Hi,
Quote
Attached, I hope, is a photo of the live extension socket taken with my tablet.
Well that certainly looks like the the ring wire is connected.
The socket you have there is an LJU2 secondary and you can see the terminal numbers on this site http://www.kitz.co.uk/adsl/btsockets.htm . That site also has a good explanation of the problems caused by the ring wire http://www.kitz.co.uk/adsl/socket.htm
From your picture is seems clear that there are connections on terminal 3 which is the ring wire, in fact it looks like all 6 teminal have connections. It would appear that there is an incoming and outgoing cable to that socket which would suggest that, if that socket is live,  there is at least one other live socket somewhere.
Given that,  I'd be pretty confident that your internal wiring is having a significant affect on your speeds but I'm not sure how to suggest proceeding. If you had a 'proper' master socket then I would have no hesitancy  in suggesting that you remove any wires from other than terminals 2 & 5 on all the sockets and the removable faceplate on the master., since the wiring would be outside of BT's demarcation. In your case, with no master, it's a bit tricky, as technically it's BT's wiring. If it was me, I'd be tempted to have a look at the 'master' socket and gently remove ( and tuck out of the way ) any wires from other than terminals 2 & 5 as indicated in the guide linked above...
NB If you do try it, then you need to be careful not to disturb the connections on 2 & 5.
colmcam
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Re: Advice on download speeds please.

Hi
Thanks for the advice.  From the dimensions and external picture on the Kitz site the Master Socket appears to be an LJU3 Master but I will have to move a heavy cupboard to get to remove the faceplate and confirm this, then I'll consider what to do next !
Fibre is being rolled out in my area and a green cabinet has appeared in front of the local exchange. I asked the contactor working on the cabinet cabling when we would be connected up but of course he didn't know. When fibre is available, do you think that the BTOR installation will solve my  ring wire and extension cabling problem ?
Thanks
Superuser
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Re: Advice on download speeds please.

Quote
From the dimensions and external picture on the Kitz site the Master Socket appears to be an LJU3 Master
That sounds about right.
Quote
When fibre is available, do you think that the BTOR installation will solve my  ring wire and extension cabling problem ?
Very likely, since BT would need to fit a 'proper' NTE5 master socket with VDSL faceplate as part of the Fibre installation process, and any extensions would be connected to the filtered output.
Let us know if we can offer any further advice.
Community Veteran
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Re: Advice on download speeds please.

@colcam go for it and do the mod  Smiley
I did many moons ago (see attachment for story)
MisterW as involved too http://community.plus.net/forum/index.php/topic,97499.msg823502.html#msg823502
To do is to be - Neitzsche
To be is to do - Kant
do be do be do - Sinatra
colmcam
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Registered: 20-10-2014

Re: Advice on download speeds please.

Hi
We have boisterous grandchildren visiting so I will delay moving thhe furniture and unscrewing the LJU Master Socket faceplate until the end of next week!  I'll then post a photo of the innards for your further advice and comments before I attempt a modification, if that's OK?.
Thanks again
Plusnet Help Team
Plusnet Help Team
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Re: Advice on download speeds please.

Hi colmcam,
Thanks for your time on the phone just now. I'll text you an update in a moment when I have it all sorted for you,
Tony
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 Tony T
 Plusnet Help Team
colmcam
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Re: Advice on download speeds please.

Tony
Text received and engineer visit date & time is fine.
Thanks
colmcam
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Registered: 20-10-2014

Re: Advice on download speeds please.

Unfortunately, following the Plusnet booked engineer visit, my download speeds have now dropped this evening to below 2 mbps, including one at 10pm being 0.401 mbps, practically dialup speed!
The BTOR engineer visited about 0845 today Tuesday 28 October, as booked by Plusnet. He noted the old LJU Master Socket in my ground floor living room and asked me a number of questions about the possible age of the internal wiring (much of which is invisible beneath floorboards etc) the number of extensions (one, in a first floor bedroom) and the variety of my slow download speeds. He verified that my Router was currently working and that ADSL filters were properly in place. He did a copper wire line test at the junction box where the drop wire enters the house and confirmed that there was no line fault and that optimum speed was being received. He tested the internal wiring and seemed to feel that there were problems. He installed a NTE5 MK2 Master socket in place of the extension as he said that this was the nearer point to the drop wire junction box. The old LJU Master socket, with (I assume) ring wire disconnected, became the extension (I have plugged my Dect landline phone, with filter, into this). He then checked that the Router was working and connected to the internet. The download speed was then just below 5 mbps, no improvement on my usual speeds. He phoned BTOR and got them (I think) to adjust my DSL connection rate and IP profile. He said that given an (unspecified) time to adjust, my download speeds might improve. He said, in the nicest possible way, that nowadays BTOR would consider internal wiring problems as the customer's responsibility. However, I'm not clear, and I didn't ask him, if this included the wire from the drop wire junction box to the Master Socket.
For the record, I was quite impressed by his good customer care approach, He was informative and willing to answer questions.
Sadly, as I have said above, my download speeds seem to have got worse!
Plusnet Help Team
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Re: Advice on download speeds please.

Hi,
Thanks for the update. I booked the engineer because I felt that you had star wiring issues rather than simply internal extension leads.
You are syncing at 8128k now, and I've adjusted the profile on our side to match the bRAS. If you could please re-connect and monitor the speeds it would be appreciated.
Thanks,
Tony
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 Tony T
 Plusnet Help Team