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Guide
Posts: 8
Registered: ‎2016-12-26

Inconsistency with Orbi Speed

Hi

I've recently bought the twin Orbi router system and I have mixed feelings about it. I have seen the fastest speed I've ever experienced using it purely by speed testing it on my iPhone 7 i.e. 360+ Mbps , but then I can go from the fastest speed to maybe 20 Mbps a few seconds later (download speed), it's sporadic and not consistent. I do have quite a lot of speakers , IOT devices, iPads, iPhones , laptops etc about 40+ Connected but the router can handle 250 and is another reason why I invested heavily it this system. If anyone has any ideas as to how I could get better consistency using Mac/iOS products I would be greatly appreciative,

Many thanks

John
Apprentice
Posts: 31
Registered: ‎2017-01-07

Re: Inconsistency with Orbi Speed

I see the same issue.  I can sometimes connect at my max speed about 200 Mbps, then a few seconds later, it will be a 20 or 50 Mbps.  I only have a 2 or 3 devices on the network, but also see this with just 1 device on the network and not doing any background downloads or anything.  I especially see this inconsistency near the Satellite but happens near the router too.  I have the latest firmware 1.4.0.34.

Apprentice
Posts: 28
Registered: ‎2016-12-20

Re: Inconsistency with Orbi Speed

Seeing this also.  on speedtest.net and fast.com.

 

One minute 363Mbps next test 20Mbps....

 

Slowly running out of patience with Orbi tech team.  Between this and wifi drops.

Guide
Posts: 8
Registered: ‎2016-12-26

Re: Inconsistency with Orbi Speed

Looks like we have both extremes here , I have quite a lot of devices connected and you guys perhaps don't have nearly as many but we are all seeing a similar result. There was a new firmware update yesterday that I did but that zero effect on speeds. Prior to purchasing the Orbi router I've generally used the basic ISP provided routers apart from buying a used Apple Time Capsule for €80 which was not as fast but was more consistent, I have spent 6 times the cost of that but I am not seeing anything you could class as steady, consistent speeds - hope someone from Netgear chimes in with a fix or hope of fix soon !
Guide
Posts: 8
Registered: ‎2016-12-26

Re: Inconsistency with Orbi Speed

Speedtest Screenshot  - typical results

NETGEAR Moderator
Posts: 5,704
Registered: ‎2015-06-15

Re: Inconsistency with Orbi Speed

Hello Johnnyk5679

 

Does this happen on wired devices? or is it just over the wireless? Have you checked to modem itself see if you see this change in speeds?

 

DarrenM

Guide
Posts: 8
Registered: ‎2016-12-26

Re: Inconsistency with Orbi Speed

Hi Darrren .. I generally am only on wireless so that's why I bought such an expensive router thinking that it would deliver consistency ?! I can check connected directly to the router but this is not going to reflect how I will be using the router. Can you confirm what you mean by check the modem ?
Guide
Posts: 8
Registered: ‎2016-12-26

Re: Inconsistency with Orbi Speed

Here's tonight's Speedtest - please look at the time intervals and the speeds I got , what causes this sporadic behavior ???IMG_2129.PNG

Apprentice
Posts: 37
Registered: ‎2017-01-02

Re: Inconsistency with Orbi Speed

Hi Johnny,

 

Can you try the speed test from a laptop instead of a phone? If so, you can use an Ethernet cable to connect the laptop directly to the Router via one of the Ethernet ports in the back (use the Router, not the Satelittes). Also I would try other devices via Wireless as well if you can (like the laptop via wireless and any other device you might have).

 

The results of this will reveal several things and help narrow down the problem:

1) If it is inconsistent even with a wired connected via a laptop, we eliminate wireless as the issue. Then it might be the router or it could just be your service provider having inconsistencies.

2) If another device has fast speeds via wireless and they are consistent, then the issue is specifc to your one iphone, and we can focus on troubleshooting that

 

 

 

Regards,

Gilles

 

Guide
Posts: 8
Registered: ‎2016-12-26

Re: Inconsistency with Orbi Speed

Hi Gilles

Did a few tests with 3 different devices

Wired MacBook 2009
Test 1 : 269.9 DL - 37.03 UL
Test 2 : 286.49 DL - 37.12 UL
Test 3 : 285.56 DL - 37.18 UL
Test 4 : 279.44 DL - 37.10 UL
Test 5 : 229.84 DL - 37.08 UL

Wireless MacBook Air 2014
Test 1 : 232.34 DL - 36.83 UL
Test 2 : 233.47 DL - 36.97 UL
Test 3 : 206.94 DL - 37.16 UL
Test 4 : 219.69 DL - 37.25 UL
Test 5 : 236.86 DL - 37.16 UL

iPhone 7 2016
Test 1 : 44.19 DL - 27.19 UL
Test 2 : 42.28 DL - 36.90 UL
Test 3 : 255.20 DL - 37.02 UL
Test 4 : 345.85 DL - 37.20 UL
Test 5 : 260.33 DL - 36.88 UL

I ran these 5 tests on the 3 different devices one after the other , connecting direct to the router as requested and the other two over wifi - is it just a case of the inconsistencies of wifi on a phone and I just have to deal with it ? If so it's a shame as this iPhone is the device I'm on 99% of the time,

Let me know what you think,

Regards

John
Apprentice
Posts: 31
Registered: ‎2017-01-07

Re: Inconsistency with Orbi Speed

I ran some similar tests.

 

Firmware 1.4.0.34 on both router and satellite.

Comcast 250 Mbps service

OOKLA speed test

 

Toshiba laptop (Win 10) at router:

(ping/up/down)

 

Test 1wireless: 19/232/12 (ping/up/down)

Test 2 wireless: 21/230/12

Test 3 wireless: 22/223/12

Test 1 wired to router: 22/96/12

Test 2 wired to router: 24/95/12

Test 3 wired to router: 18/95/12

 

iPhone 6 at router:

Test 1 wireless: 9/221/12 (ping/up/down)

Test 2 wireless: 10/237/12

Test 3 wireless: 11/236/12

 

Toshiba laptop (Win 10) at satellite:

Test 1 wireless: 24/79/12 (ping/up/down)

Test 2 wireless: 28/80/12

Test 3 wireless: 29/71/12

 

iPhone 6 at satellite:

Test 1 wireless: 15/81/12 (ping/up/down)

Test 2 wireless: 13/84/12

Test 3 wireless: 13/76/12

 

I tried to reboot the satellite to factory reset and re-sync, but get the same download speeds of about 80 Mbps.  When I first set this system up, I was getting 250 Mbps at the satellite too.

 

Why am I only getting < 1/2 down load speed at the satellite?

 

 

 

Apprentice
Posts: 157
Registered: ‎2013-11-26

Re: Inconsistency with Orbi Speed

I have concluded that for me 16 is the most stable Firmware with iOS devices and that is what I am sticking with until Netgear can sort out the inconsistent and instability issues in the next Firmware release.

Guide
Posts: 8
Registered: ‎2016-12-26

Re: Inconsistency with Orbi Speed

How does one get this stable forward you speak of ? I'm in v1.4.0.34 🙁
Apprentice
Posts: 157
Registered: ‎2013-11-26

Re: Inconsistency with Orbi Speed

orbi is a very powerful machine and I am optimistic the instability issues will get resolved.  I am also quite sure Netgear Engineering look at these posts and our discussions to get an idea what type of common issues we are all running into.  for me personally 16 is the best Firmware for the mix of my devices that for me has been the most stable thus far and I have spent countless hours over several months testing and trying different settings and Firmware combos... As I said 16 is what works for me so I stick with it for now.  I am looking forward to the next release and will compare with 16 for me the 1.4.0.16 release is the gold standard for my situation and environment and setup.... 18 was not stable and pushed out too quickly 34 has issues with random drops and sporadic slowness.  16 is not perfect but it is for me the most stable to date.

Initiate
Posts: 2
Registered: ‎2017-01-11

Re: Inconsistency with Orbi Speed

I'm experiencing the identical issue as everyone else. Gets so slow I can't stream movies sometimes. Other times fast as lightning. 

 

Help?

Star
Posts: 21
Registered: ‎2017-01-09

Re: Inconsistency with Orbi Speed

Wanted to chime in on this as well, as I've done extensive and tedious testing over the past 2 days to try to figure this out. First of all, I'm testing on an iPad Air 2 running iperf connecting to a hardwired computer on the LAN, so internet speed is eliminated as a factor. Secondly, I ensured before each test that I was indeed connected to the 5ghz band of the router or the satellite (whichever I was testing at the time), as the iPad will cling to the current connection even if you get closer to the other unit as long as the signal is good. Lastly, A LAN - LAN test from a different hardwired computer to the one running iperf in server mode was a consistent ~940Mbs (gigabit ethernet). The test as I configured it simply downloads as much data as it can during 2 seconds, and repeats this 5 times.

 

Now, on to the Orbi. My router and sat are (I think) around 20-25ft apart (hard to tell exactly), router upstairs and sat downstairs (so there are obstructions... floor, walls, cabinets). Standing in a position from the router that yields a signal of about -40, I get a reasonably consistent ~375Mbs (sometimes even reaching in the the lower 400Mbs range), comparable speeds to my Nighthawk R7800.

 

router.PNG

 

 

When positioned near the sat (and, again, confirming that I am indeed connected through it), sometimes I can run several test cycles back to back and get 200-250Mbs. But more often than not, it gets dicey, sometimes showing drastically flucutating speeds within the 10 second test cycle, other times just being solidly bad.

 

sat1.PNGsat2.PNGsat3.PNG

 

 

My first reaction was to assume there was a problem with the backhaul link. So, I plugged a laptop (WiFi off) into an ethernet port on the sat, and determined that the backhaul speed was in the neighborhood of 500Mbs, ruling that out... this is a problem between the client and the sat.  And bear in mind, it's not a torture test, as I'm sitting only about 12ft. from the sat with no obstructions, and have a solid signal of around -37 to -40.


Now, I originally did these tests on a system running the latest v1.4.0.34 firmware. I exchanged that for another Orbi, and tested with the firmware that came on it, v1.1.0.16 (initial release). It SEEMED to be better with that firmware, as I ran several test cycles and got speeds in the expected 200-250Mbs range, but after updating to v1.4.0.34, I started seeing the poor sat speeds again, which also occurred after downgrading to v1.4.0.16 as was suggested here.

 

It's possible that maybe the problem existed even with v1.1.0.16, and that I just wasn't patient enough to allow it to be revealed. Have not tried downgrading all the way back to that version yet, but will try to do so this evening.

 

I'm really considering jumping ship... when I went to exchange the Orbi, I saw that our Best Buy has the Linksys Velop in stock, which has received favorable speed ratings in reviews (then again, so has the Orbi!). I stood there for a while, contemplating whether or not to just go with the Linksys right then instead of trying another Orbi, but what sealed that decision was a quick perusal of the Velop's features in a review, which mentioned that this product has very little configurability, including the inability to even set a DHCP range, and it MUST be configured from the app... no web interface.

 

So I really want the Orbi to work, but I'm at a loss here.

Apprentice
Posts: 37
Registered: ‎2017-01-02

Re: Inconsistency with Orbi Speed

Just to command on the post above, a brand new product like the Linksys Velop is bound to have tons of bugs, it will be some months before it starts stabilizing (I'd say this is true for almost any wireless router from any manufacturer, i.e. they all rush them out).

 

 

Regards

Star
Posts: 21
Registered: ‎2017-01-09

Re: Inconsistency with Orbi Speed

True... biggest roadblock to the Velop for me is the inability to set a DHCP range (and I'm assuming it has no "access point" mode like the Orbi has, so I wouldn't be able to use my existing router with the Velop just handing WiFi).  Still, I'm tempted to give it a try, as this is my second Orbi and it's still giving sporadically terrible (but sometimes excellent) performance on the satellite.

 

Just an update... rolled back to 1.4.0.16 and then 1.1.0.16, had the same speed inconsistency problem with both.  However, after I had done these tests I decided to go back to the latest version (1.4.0.34), and was a bit surprised when I opened the Orbi's web page to see that it was already at that version!  Tried to roll back a few more times, and apparently the Orbi, no matter what version I roll back to, promptly updates right back to 1.4.0.34, and I can't seem to find a setting to stop it.

 

So, in other words, I can't say whether or not this problem existed in older versions, because my Orbi immediately updates to the latest.  Any way to stop this?

Star
Posts: 21
Registered: ‎2017-01-09

Re: Inconsistency with Orbi Speed

Well, I reluctantly threw in the towel and returned the Orbi for a refund.

 

In hindsight, I don't know if the problem I was seeing was exactly the same as the starter of this topic, as his speed tests indicated a bad fluctuation in downstream speed, while my initial tests, as it turns out, were actually upstream (from my device TO the test server).  However, I reconfigured the test and saw a similar, though not as extreme, fluctuation in downstream speed.

 

So, just to recap and update, despite having a solid router to satellite connection (stable 500mbs+) tested by hardwiring a computer to an ethernet port, when I was connected through the satellite's client-facing WiFi (in easy conditions, in the same room as the satellite with no obstructions, and a strong signal), my upstream speed would sometimes be the expected ~200-250mbs (and sometimes even better), but often would drop precipitiously to 20-80mbs.  Downstream speed was also affected, though to a lesser degree... sometimes 300mbs+, but often dropping to around 100mbs or less.  This occurred on an iPad Air 2 and iPhone 6s, and also on a MacBook Air.  Curiously, when I tested with my old MacBook Pro, which has 802.11n WiFi, I saw consistent speeds in the 250mbs+ range with no slowdowns (still on the satellite's 5ghz connection), so perhaps this is only related to ac devices?

 

Tried moving the satellite to other locations (and again confirming a good link speed via ethernet connection to the satellite), with similar bad results on the ac devices.  In contrast, with the ac devices directly to the router's WiFi (with a similar signal strength), I saw good speed (300-400mbs) consistently.

 

A replacement Orbi system did the same thing.  I find it unlikely that I got two bad ones in a row.  Yet, few (or no) others are reporting this same problem.  Something environmental specific to my house, or a coincidentla problem with all 3 ac devices I tested with?  Perhaps, though again I'd note that connecting to the router's radio worked fine, only the satellite showed these slowdowns, despite very "easy" conditions.

Virtuoso
Posts: 306
Registered: ‎2017-01-14

Re: Inconsistency with Orbi Speed

michael814, I've been testing my Orbi using iPerf between two MacBookPros.  I also see inconsistencies, but so far I've only seen them when measuring speeds between two wireless clients.

 

Between the satellite's wired port and the router's wired port, I measure a consistent ~500 Mbps across the backhaul.

 

Between the satellite's wired port and a wireless 5G device on the satellite, I measure a consistent ~230 Mbps.

 

Between two wireless 5G devices on the satellite, the average throughput is ~90 Mbps, but the speed always drops down to ~30 mbps for a few 1 sec intervals.

 

Maybe this makes sense? With two clients on the same 5G channel, the bandwidth needs to be shared between them, so the overall throughput should be less than half, and there may be intervals where interference drops that way below half.  I tried the same test on two different 802.11n WiFi routers I have here, including an enterprise grade Cradlepoint and a Netgear WNDR4500.  Both of these units behave exactly the same way.

 

I'm curious, have you done your tests on any other router and seen consistent speeds?

Star
Posts: 21
Registered: ‎2017-01-09

Re: Inconsistency with Orbi Speed

Yes, with my R7800 router, I get good speed (same conditions as the Orbi test, between an iPad or iPhone and a hardwired computer)... varies beteen 375-500mbs, but never drops abruptly like I saw with the Orbi satellite.  And again, that same test with the Orbi router also delivered solid results, it's just the satellite that I'm seeing this on.

Virtuoso
Posts: 306
Registered: ‎2017-01-14

Re: Inconsistency with Orbi Speed

Interesting.  Thanks.  I'll have to try my tests connected to the Orbi router.  I also noticed highly variable ping times between machines, varying from 6 ms to 200 ms.  That doesn't make sense.

 

Virtuoso
Posts: 306
Registered: ‎2017-01-14

Re: Inconsistency with Orbi Speed

I solved my mystery.  I had a WiFi scanner program open on the client laptop.  Apparently this impacts throughput every few seconds.  If I shut the scanner down, I get solid throughput around 100 Mbps between two wireless devices.  I tested with both devices on the satelittle, and with one on the router.

 

It sure is easy to waste a lot of time doing tests like this!

Star
Posts: 21
Registered: ‎2017-01-09

Re: Inconsistency with Orbi Speed

[ Edited ]

Ok, some more information that very likely exonerates the Orbi. As I mentioned above, after exchanging for a new system and observing the same issue, I returned it for a refund on Friday. This morning on somewhat of a whim, after learning that the Linksys Velop indeed did have DHCP reservation (it's just hidden away in the app), I decided that despite it's reported simplistic feature set, I could make it work with my networking setup. So, even though I no longer have a direct interest here, I wanted to relate some new information for the sake of posterity, accuracy, and potentially helping others.

 

Once the Velop was up and running, I discovered that it too was exhibiting the same issue... good speed sometimes with random inexplicable slowdowns when connected through the satellite (initially I just had 2 of the 3 Velop units in operation). While two presumably defective Orbi systems in a row was arguably too coincidental, a totally different product also showing the same problem meant there had to be something else.

 

While I still don't know exactly what that "something else" is, I have a strong suspicion. In the 2nd floor closet in which my networking gear is housed, there are those white-coated wire "ClosetMaid" shelves. Now, I had previously had concerns about this, and had mounted my R7800 as high in the closet as I could to get it away from these shelves (antennas are a couple of feet above the top shelf), though it did not seem to be affected. With the Orbi, I could not wall mount it, though I was able to place it on a board that extended past the edge of the shelf, so that the signal down to the direction of the satellite would not have to pass through the shelves. It appeared to be fine, as I got good speed hardwired through the satellite, and got good speed when the client was connected to the router's WiFi, even if I was downstairs and in a position where the signal DID have to pass through the wire shelves.

 

Because the Velop can do an ethernet backhaul, and I had another node, I placed one in my upstairs office (which didn't really absolutely need one, but I have ethernet run here from the wiring closet).  Once it was up and running wirelessly, it too gave iffy speeds. Connecting it to my hardwired network predictably boosted speeds on this node to pretty much the same as I was getting through the main unit, and, as I hoped would occur, the troublesome downstairs node switched its wireless link away from the main unit in favor of this additional hardwired node (which was in a good position for reception). The speed problems when connected to the downstairs node vanished.

 

The only explanation that I can come up with is that the close proximity of the metal in the closet (even though it was not in the path of the signal) was causing it to reflect around a bit, and this was confusing the router (which interpreted it as interference, and slowed the connection down as a result). But what doesn't make sense to me is, if router placement was indeed the issue, why would this only occur when the client was wirelessly connected to the satellite, and not when a client was hardwired to the satellite?

 

I don't know. But in my Orbi troubleshooting, and with the Velop, though I varied the satellite's position, the placement of the main router was constant, which although I thought I had taken sufficient steps to confirm was not an issue, this was apparently revealed to be a mistake. Though this was seemingly proven by the addition of another hardwired Velop in the upstairs office that the downstairs node connected reliably through (taking the main unit in the closet out of the satellite node equation), I suspect I would have seen the same positive result had I gotten the Orbi router out of and away from the closet for a test, which in hindsight I could have done by running some temporary network and cable modem wiring.

Guide
Posts: 8
Registered: ‎2016-12-26

Re: Inconsistency with Orbi Speed

Should I be disconnecting my satellite and doing some tests with just the router? Haven't tried this ! Hoping the guys at Netgear are reading these posts and a magical firmware update is in the works that solves these issues !!
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