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Plugging direct into test socket gives speeds 3.5x faster - WHY?

matthewlee100
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Registered: ‎15-07-2020

Plugging direct into test socket gives speeds 3.5x faster - WHY?

Hi all,

Hoping to get some advice / help.

I was suffering from extremely low broadband speeds right after I signed up with Plusnet (3mbps vs advertised speeds of 11mbps)

Instead of plugging the microfilter into the master socket face plate, I removed the face plate, and plugged directly into the test socket - lo and behold, speeds are now consistently at 11mbps

Does anyone know why this is? Does it mean I should replace my face plate? But the face plate is new, and was installed right before I had my service activated by a BT Openreach engineer...

I am also a little unsure how the face plate actually connects to the wiring as it doesn't seem like there is a connection point? The face plate socket seems to just plug into a hole... (see attached picture).

Thank you!

 

12 REPLIES 12
jab1
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Re: Plugging direct into test socket gives speeds 3.5x faster - WHY?

@matthewlee100 Looking at that socket, I'm guessing it is a pre-filtered one, so plugging the rats-tail is 'double-filtering' which is not recommended, and could well be the cause of your low speed.

If that faceplate is turned round, does it have 'phone' symbol on the lower socket and a 'wireless' one on the upper? (or the other way round)

John
MisterW
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Re: Plugging direct into test socket gives speeds 3.5x faster - WHY?


@matthewlee100 wrote:
Instead of plugging the microfilter into the master socket face plate, I removed the face plate, and plugged directly into the test socket - lo and behold, speeds are now consistently at 11mbps

Does anyone know why this is? Does it mean I should replace my face plate? But the face plate is new, and was installed right before I had my service activated by a BT Openreach engineer...

I am also a little unsure how the face plate actually connects to the wiring as it doesn't seem like there is a connection point? The face plate socket seems to just plug into a hole... (see attached picture).


It means that you have a problem with your extension wiring.

It isnt obvious how the faceplate makes the connection to the extension terminals is it. It actually does this via the top plug on the faceplate.It has connectors top and bottom wheras a normal BT plug only has connectioons on the upper surface. The lower surface connections complete a circuit on the backplate which connects the incoming line to the extension terminals.

Ideally you should replace your existing faceplate with a Mk4 filtered one which will insert a filter between the line and your extension wiring https://community.plus.net/t5/Fibre-Broadband/Replacing-NTE5C-faceplates/td-p/1517214

@jab1 the OP has a standard (non filtered) NTE5C faceplate

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bmc
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Re: Plugging direct into test socket gives speeds 3.5x faster - WHY?

@matthewlee100 

If you look very closely at the top rectangle you'll see it looks just like a phone plug - which it is. It plugs into the master socket and then you plug into the face plate.

 

The test socket eliminates all internal extension wiring which can often be the cause of problems. Do you have any extensions on the line?

 

You can buy filtered face plates to eliminate the need for the external filter.

 

Brian

matthewlee100
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Re: Plugging direct into test socket gives speeds 3.5x faster - WHY?

Thanks John - the other side of the face plate only has 1 socket, and I plug in a micro-filter (which I assume splits the broadband and phone line). I do not use a phone however. When I plug directly into the test socket, I am still connecting via a micro filter - so that should not be the cause of the slow speed?

jab1
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Re: Plugging direct into test socket gives speeds 3.5x faster - WHY?


@MisterW wrote:

<snip>

@jab1 the OP has a standard (non filtered) NTE5C faceplate


@MisterW I realise that now - having a 'new' socket, I kind of assumed it would be fitted with a filtered faceplate. I wonder why it wasn't?

John
matthewlee100
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Re: Plugging direct into test socket gives speeds 3.5x faster - WHY?

@jab1 @bmc @MisterW 

 

Thanks for all the helpful answers, but I am afraid I am not an expert and it is all getting a bit technical.

 

I have other socket points throughout my house, but in the past, these have not worked when I plugged the router in there. It would be more convenient if I could get the broadband to come through one of those sockets (currently the master socket is in a cupboard which means the router is in an inconvenient place). Is this perhaps linked to the extension wiring that is causing the connection issues?

 

Does anyone know if there are engineers that I can call to help me solve all these issues? I think BT Openreach should really be fixing this for me as they messed it up, but doubt I will get any luck with that.

 

 

MisterW
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Re: Plugging direct into test socket gives speeds 3.5x faster - WHY?


@matthewlee100 wrote:

@jab1 @bmc @MisterW 


I have other socket points throughout my house, but in the past, these have not worked when I plugged the router in there. It would be more convenient if I could get the broadband to come through one of those sockets (currently the master socket is in a cupboard which means the router is in an inconvenient place). Is this perhaps linked to the extension wiring that is causing the connection issues?

 

Does anyone know if there are engineers that I can call to help me solve all these issues? I think BT Openreach should really be fixing this for me as they messed it up, but doubt I will get any luck with that.


I'm not sure why the other sockets wouldn't work for the router. Normally  the reason is that there is a filtered faceplate and the extensions are connected via that and thus the broadband signal is filterd out to the extensions. You don't appear to have a filtered faceplate so that shouldn't be happening. However having lots of extension wiring does tend to affect the broadband since it acts like an areial and picks up electrical noise and thus reduces the speed.

Openreach's responsibility ends at the master socket and so getting them to fix extesnion wiring is a nonstarter. Your best bet is probably to find a local ex-BT engineer who ought to be able to assist. There's usually one or more advertisiong in the local press.

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bmc
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Re: Plugging direct into test socket gives speeds 3.5x faster - WHY?

@matthewlee100 

Do you have a phone - if so, test the extensions to see if there's a dial tone.

 

It is possible the extensions are no longer connected? You could very carefully unscrew the master socket to see the wiring behind it. If extension wiring is visible it should be easy to reconnect.

 

In times gone by I added a filtered face plate to the master socket and a new face plate for an extension for my ADSL service. It took a couple of attempts as I got the wiring wrong first time around. I used the following (which, as always, come with instructions) but there are other products available.

https://www.adslnation.com/products/index.php

 

Brian

MisterW
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Re: Plugging direct into test socket gives speeds 3.5x faster - WHY?

It is possible the extensions are no longer connected? You could very carefully unscrew the master socket to see the wiring behind it. If extension wiring is visible it should be easy to reconnect.

There's extension wiring visible in the first picture posted by the OP. However, looking at that picture again , the box next to the master socket, that isn't an alarm system is it ?

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bmc
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Re: Plugging direct into test socket gives speeds 3.5x faster - WHY?

@MisterW  @matthewlee100 

I wasn't familiar with the master socket shown. However it's still worth checking to see if extensions have a dial tone.

 

Searching the web came up with the following for the NTE5C master socket.

https://www.openreach.co.uk/orpg/home/helpandsupport/how-toguides/howtoguides/downloads/NTE5C_Instru...

 

Brian

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Re: Plugging direct into test socket gives speeds 3.5x faster - WHY?


@bmc wrote:

I wasn't familiar with the master socket shown. However it's still worth checking to see if extensions have a dial tone.



Yes I couldn't work out how the faceplate made the connection for the extension wiring when I first saw the NTE5C. After some  digging I finally worked it out. Its a good idea to have the extension wiring fixed to the backplate rather than attached to the removable faceplate, especially with the cam-lock rather than punch down connectors.

TBH though , its unusual to see a 5C fitted without the MK4 filtered faceplate .

Agreed, its still worth checking the extensions for a dial tone. My worry from the last post is that the box next to the 5C is an alarm and its not filtered properly...

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Thruppence
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Re: Plugging direct into test socket gives speeds 3.5x faster - WHY?

In brief, you need a MK4 filtered faceplate and no microfilter, assuming the wiring has been done correctly.

In your photo, the translucent camlock connector on the left should be connected to your internal phone wiring. If you remove the screw just above it and carefully ease off the faceplate, on the back there should be another camlock connector for the incoming drop wire from BT.

When plugged in to the test socket, your microfilter connects to the fingers on its top surface. These fingers only connect to the drop wire. Your regular faceplate uses fingers on the bottom surface of the test socket to complete the connection to the internal wiring. This is why the speed through your test socket is much higher, because the internal wiring is degrading the signal through the faceplate. The MK4 filtered faceplate takes the incoming signal and routes it to its RJ45/RJ11 data socket, while filtering out the broadband signal before feeding it to its phone socket and the internal wiring.

The MK4 filtered faceplate is widely available on Amazon, Ebay etc. and clips on like your existing faceplate.