Reply
Highlighted
Prodigy

Community FAQ: My Orbi speeds are slow, inconsistent, and don't my upstream maximum Internet speed

People frequently ask why their Orbi speeds aren't fast so they need the same answers given in each reply.  I propose we collectively build up a FAQ in this post so people can easily discover and run the most common troubleshooting steps before posting.  Reply with the new/edited complete FAQ each time and we can point people to the latest reply for the latest FAQ instructions.  I'll start!

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

 

What should you do when a speed test run on a device connected to your Orbi network doesn't match the maximum download/upload speeds from your upstream Internet provider?

 
First, optimize your test measurements and determine where exactly the speed degrades:
  • Don't rely upon the Orbi's built-in speed test via its app or admin website.  Instead, run a speed test on your device(s) using something like the speedtest.net phone/desktop app or use the speedtest.net website in a desktop browser.
  • Disconnect your Orbi and connect a wired device via a network cable directly to your ISP's modem/gateway.  Run a speed test.  This measured speed is the maximum possible for your internet plan.
  • Next, reconnect your Orbi and connect a wired device via a network cable directly to one of your Orbi base station's LAN ports.  Run a speed test.  This measured speed is the maximum Orbi wired speed.
  • Next, connect a wireless device near your Orbi base station (RBR).  Run a speed test.  This measured speed is the maximum Orbi wireless speed for that device.
  • Next, connect a wired device to your Orbi satellite (RBS).  Run a speed test.  This measured speed is the maximum Orbi satellite speed for that satellite.
Now we know where the speeds degrade, e.g., is it at the Orbi base or is it only wireless devices connected to the Orbi.
 
Here are some common reasons why your Orbi speeds do not match your upstream Internet speeds:
  1. Make sure your Orbi is already updated to the latest available firmware version.
  2. Is your ISP modem/gateway also a router device, i.e., does it allow you to connect multiple devices vs. a single ethernet jack?  You don't want your ISP device routing and then the Orbi routing again because this is less efficient.  It also produces Double NAT which is not recommended and may cause problems with playing online games, opening a specific service port, connecting to a VPN tunnel, or visiting secure sites with SSL.
    • You can fix this issue by putting your ISP gateway into "bridge mode" where only the Orbi base station is connected and the Orbi handles all routing functionality.  Also configure your ISP gateway so your Orbi is the DMZ/ExposedHost or IP Pass-Through and disable all Wi-Fi functionality in your gateway (since your Orbi is doing this).
    • Alternatively you can put your Orbi in Access Point (AP) mode where the Orbi only provides wireless connectivity and your ISP gateway retains all router functionality: https://kb.netgear.com/31218/How-do-I-configure-my-Orbi-router-to-act-as-an-access-point
  3. If your speed loss is apparent with your maximum Orbi wired speed (at the Orbi base station), be sure to disable Armor, Circle, Speed Test, Access Controls and Traffic Meter.  If these overhead options are already disabled then factory reset your Orbi.
  4. If your speed loss is only with your maximum Orbi wireless speed for a specific device, note that your device can connect to your Orbi via 2.4Ghz, 5Ghz AC, or 5Ghz AX.  Each of these have different inherent wireless maximum limits.
    • Try adjusting the wireless channel.  Use an app to monitor nearby wireless SSIDs to select one with the least interference: https://www.howtogeek.com/197268/how-to-find-the-best-wi-fi-channel-for-your-router-on-any-operating...
    • Environmental conditions and wireless overhead ALWAYS result in substantially lower real world results!
    • Only some phones currently support AX (Wi-Fi 6) and will benefit from the Orbi AX's higher speed capabilities - Maximum real world AC speeds will be in the 500s-600s whereas maximum AX speeds can go higher.
    • Devices are responsible for selecting the optimal wireless connection and they are inconsistent.  You will sometimes see high speeds and then low speeds with no changes at your Orbi.
  5. If your speed loss is only with a specific satellite, is the satellite connected wireless or wired to the Orbi base station?
  6. etc.
Other references:

 

Message 1 of 3
Highlighted
Prodigy

Community FAQ: My Orbi speeds are slow, inconsistent, less then upstream maximum speeds

What should you do when a speed test run on a device connected to your Orbi network doesn't match the maximum download/upload speeds from your upstream Internet provider?

 
First, optimize your test measurements and determine where exactly the speed degrades:
  • Don't rely upon the Orbi's built-in speed test via its app or admin website.  Instead, run a speed test on your device(s) using something like the speedtest.net phone/desktop app or use the speedtest.net website in a desktop browser.
  • Disconnect your Orbi and connect a wired device via a network cable directly to your ISP's modem/gateway.  Run a speed test.  This measured speed is the maximum possible for your internet plan.
  • Next, reconnect your Orbi and connect a wired device via a network cable directly to one of your Orbi base station's LAN ports.  Run a speed test.  This measured speed is the maximum Orbi wired speed.
  • Next, connect a wireless device near your Orbi base station (RBR).  Run a speed test.  This measured speed is the maximum Orbi wireless speed for that device.
  • Next, connect a wired device to your Orbi satellite (RBS).  Run a speed test.  This measured speed is the maximum Orbi satellite speed for that satellite.
Now we know where the speeds degrade, e.g., is it at the Orbi base or is it only wireless devices connected to the Orbi.
 
Here are some common reasons why your Orbi speeds do not match your upstream Internet speeds:
  1. Make sure your Orbi is already updated to the latest available firmware version.
  2. Verify that you have at least Cat5E or Cat6 cabling or try different cables, otherwise other cable types or bad cables may throttle your speeds to 100 Mbps.
  3. Is your ISP modem/gateway also a router device, i.e., does it allow you to connect multiple devices vs. a single ethernet jack?  You don't want your ISP device routing and then the Orbi routing again because this is less efficient.  It also produces Double NAT which is not recommended and may cause problems with playing online games, opening a specific service port, connecting to a VPN tunnel, or visiting secure sites with SSL.
    • You can fix this issue by putting your ISP gateway into "bridge mode" where only the Orbi base station is connected and the Orbi handles all routing functionality.  Also configure your ISP gateway so your Orbi is the DMZ/ExposedHost or IP Pass-Through and disable all Wi-Fi functionality in your gateway (since your Orbi is doing this).
    • Alternatively you can put your Orbi in Access Point (AP) mode where the Orbi only provides wireless connectivity and your ISP gateway retains all router functionality: https://kb.netgear.com/31218/How-do-I-configure-my-Orbi-router-to-act-as-an-access-point
  4. If your speed loss is apparent with your maximum Orbi wired speed (at the Orbi base station), be sure to disable Armor, Circle, Speed Test, Access Controls and Traffic Meter.  If these overhead options are already disabled then factory reset your Orbi.
  5. If your speed loss is only with your maximum Orbi wireless speed for a specific device, note that your device can connect to your Orbi via 2.4Ghz, 5Ghz AC, or 5Ghz AX.  Each of these have different inherent wireless maximum limits.
    • Try adjusting the wireless channel.  Use an app to monitor nearby wireless SSIDs to select one with the least interference: https://www.howtogeek.com/197268/how-to-find-the-best-wi-fi-channel-for-your-router-on-any-operating...
    • For Orbi AC, try enabling Beamforming and MIMO (these options are not available for Orbi AX and automatic).  Disable Daisy Chain and Fast Roaming.
    • Set 20/40Mhz Coexistence to 40Mhz only. Set Short preamble instead of Long preamble modes.   Be sure that CTS and RTS values are changed to 2347.  Disable IPv6.
    • Environmental conditions and wireless overhead ALWAYS result in substantially lower real world results!
    • Only some phones currently support AX (Wi-Fi 6) and will benefit from the Orbi AX's higher speed capabilities - Maximum real world AC speeds will be in the 500s-600s whereas maximum AX speeds can go higher.
    • Devices are responsible for selecting the optimal wireless connection and they are inconsistent.  You will sometimes see high speeds and then low speeds with no changes at your Orbi.
  6. If your speed loss is only with a specific satellite, is the satellite connected wireless or wired to the Orbi base station?
  7. If there are any network switches between full vs. slow Orbi network throughput, test without the switch or replacing the switch hardware.
  8. Check your device's network connection device settings to ensure it is not throttling that device (example).
  9. Check if your home network has any misbehaving devices.  Some users have reported that repeater devices (e.g., Sonos) or USB-C network dongles have degraded or interrupted network performance.
  10. Try a full factory reset of your Orbi and setup again from scratch.
Other references:
Message 2 of 3
Highlighted
Prodigy

Community FAQ: My Orbi speeds are slow, inconsistent, less then upstream maximum speeds

[fix formatting]

 

What should you do when a speed test run on a device connected to your Orbi network doesn't match the maximum download/upload speeds from your upstream Internet provider?

 
First, optimize your test measurements and determine where exactly the speed degrades:
  • Don't rely upon the Orbi's built-in speed test via its app or admin website.  Instead, run a speed test on your device(s) using something like the speedtest.net phone/desktop app or use the speedtest.net website in a desktop browser.
  • Disconnect your Orbi and connect a wired device via a network cable directly to your ISP's modem/gateway.  Run a speed test.  This measured speed is the maximum possible for your internet plan.
  • Next, reconnect your Orbi and connect a wired device via a network cable directly to one of your Orbi base station's LAN ports.  Run a speed test.  This measured speed is the maximum Orbi wired speed.
  • Next, connect a wireless device near your Orbi base station (RBR).  Run a speed test.  This measured speed is the maximum Orbi wireless speed for that device.
  • Next, connect a wired device to your Orbi satellite (RBS).  Run a speed test.  This measured speed is the maximum Orbi satellite speed for that satellite.
Now we know where the speeds degrade, e.g., is it at the Orbi base or is it only wireless devices connected to the Orbi.
 
Here are some common reasons why your Orbi speeds do not match your upstream Internet speeds:
  1. Make sure your Orbi is already updated to the latest available firmware version.
  2. Is your ISP modem/gateway also a router device, i.e., does it allow you to connect multiple devices vs. a single ethernet jack?  You don't want your ISP device routing and then the Orbi routing again because this is less efficient.  It also produces Double NAT which is not recommended and may cause problems with playing online games, opening a specific service port, connecting to a VPN tunnel, or visiting secure sites with SSL.
    • You can fix this issue by putting your ISP gateway into "bridge mode" where only the Orbi base station is connected and the Orbi handles all routing functionality.  Also configure your ISP gateway so your Orbi is the DMZ/ExposedHost or IP Pass-Through and disable all Wi-Fi functionality in your gateway (since your Orbi is doing this).
    • Alternatively you can put your Orbi in Access Point (AP) mode where the Orbi only provides wireless connectivity and your ISP gateway retains all router functionality: https://kb.netgear.com/31218/How-do-I-configure-my-Orbi-router-to-act-as-an-access-point
  3. If your speed loss is apparent with your maximum Orbi wired speed (at the Orbi base station), be sure to disable Armor, Circle, Speed Test, Access Controls and Traffic Meter.  If these overhead options are already disabled then factory reset your Orbi.
  4. If your speed loss is only with your maximum Orbi wireless speed for a specific device, note that your device can connect to your Orbi via 2.4Ghz, 5Ghz AC, or 5Ghz AX.  Each of these have different inherent wireless maximum limits.
    • Try adjusting the wireless channel.  Use an app to monitor nearby wireless SSIDs to select one with the least interference: https://www.howtogeek.com/197268/how-to-find-the-best-wi-fi-channel-for-your-router-on-any-operating...
    • For Orbi AC, try enabling Beamforming and MIMO (these options are not available for Orbi AX and automatic). Disable Daisy Chain and Fast Roaming. Set 20/40Mhz Coexistence to 40Mhz only. Set Short preamble instead of Long preamble modes.   Be sure that CTS and RTS values are changed to 2347.  Disable IPv6.
    • Environmental conditions and wireless overhead ALWAYS result in substantially lower real world results!
    • Only some phones currently support AX (Wi-Fi 6) and will benefit from the Orbi AX's higher speed capabilities - Maximum real world AC speeds will be in the 500s-600s whereas maximum AX speeds can go higher.
    • Devices are responsible for selecting the optimal wireless connection and they are inconsistent.  You will sometimes see high speeds and then low speeds with no changes at your Orbi.
  5. If your speed loss is only with a specific satellite, is the satellite connected wireless or wired to the Orbi base station?
  6. If there are any network switches between full vs. slow Orbi network throughput, test without the switch or replacing the switch hardware.
  7. Check your device's network connection device settings to ensure it is not throttling that device (example).
  8. Check if your home network has any misbehaving devices.  Some users have reported that repeater devices (e.g., Sonos) or USB-C network dongles have degraded or interrupted network performance.
  9. Try a full factory reset of your Orbi and setup again from scratch.
Other references:
Message 3 of 3
Top Contributors
Discussion stats
  • 2 replies
  • 390 views
  • 6 kudos
  • 1 in conversation
Announcements