New user questions

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New user questions

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New user questions
New user questions
2021-10-24 08:54:03
Model: Deco M5  
Hardware Version: V3
Firmware Version: 1.5.3 20210203 rel 68223

Good Morning,

Yesterday I installed my Deco M5 ac1300 in my flat to boost my wifi signal in the bedroom i work from.

 

All speed tests listed below are run via an iPhone xr using Speedtest.net

 

Initial set up/the issue

  • The flat is 623 square feet
  • ISP provided router is in the lounge and provides speed of 500mb of the 1gb available (aware 500mb is max wireless)
  • Step into the hallway and signal drops to 300mb
  • Step the bedroom i use as an office and signal drops to between 7-130 mb and is unstable.

 

Addition of the Decos

  • Created home network
  • Main is plugged directly into the router with the cable provided and is in Operation Access Point and reaches speed up to 450mb
  • Second deco was in the office, furthest point away from router/main deco but was only pulling through 50 which was lower than the signal direct from the router in that room at the time
  • Added deco 3 in the hall which boosted the signal in the office to 230 mb

 

Questions

  1. is there anyway to achieve the max wireless home speed in the office using the three decos? Beamforming is on?
  2. network optimisation always says that the wi-fi channel is congested. There is only one device on the network at the moment
  3. Have I missed anything in my setup?
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#1
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6 Reply
Re:New user questions
2021-10-24 11:50:02 - last edited 2021-10-24 12:51:14

@Skipster 

 

Based on what you said, you might not need Satellite Deco in the office. To confirm that, I'll need you to run additional tests. Depending on results, I may be able to provide you with recommendations on how to improve WiFi speed in your office, or explain what you see and what are expectations from running Deco M5 mesh.

 

For these tests, power off Satellite Deco in your office. You will be running tests with two units: Main Deco and Satellite Deco 3 in the hall.

 

Test 1 - Speed Test with two Deco only

 

Run speedtest from your office, with iPhone XR wirelessly connected to Satellite Deco 3 which is in the hall. 

 

Test 2 - Finding better location for Deco 3

 

If in Test 1 your smartphone in the office is getting speeds at or above 150mbps, see if you could find better location for Deco 3. Ideally, it should be placed where it gets good signal from Main Deco, and also delivers good signal to the office. It won't be perfect signal and you won't find such spot, but it should be good signal in both directions.

 

For the office, you could use iPhone to see quality of signal between it and Deco 3. This document may help: How to check the associated/link speed on a wireless client 

You wish to see at least 300mbps link speed reported in iPhone.

 

For Deco, use Deco app, open Deco 3 in it and check its Signal Source. Example:

 

 

In this example quality of signal is good. If you see yellow or red bars, you must move Satellite Deco 3 a bit closer to Main Deco and check again. Two or three blue bars is your ideal spot.

 

So, you'll need to check different places in the hall for Deco 3. If you have multiple electric outlets, try at each one. Every time you move Deco 3 to new place, re-check its Signal Source and also Link Speed in iPhone. 

If you want to use power extension cord to move Deco 3 in the hall, every time you try new place - power Deco 3 off and on before taking readings.

 

If you do not have multiple electric outlets through the hall, and power extension cord is not an option, just record Signal Source from current Deco 3 position and also Link Speed on smartphone, and share them here.

 

When you find the best possible spot for Deco 3, share results of speed test in iPhone.

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#2
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Re:New user questions
2021-10-24 13:55:01

HI @Alexandre. thanks for the reply.

 

Test 1 - main and deco3. iPhone gets 211.33. Windows laptop 192.12 (windows laptop gets 207.64 with all three decos online)

 

Test 2

  1.  unable to perform linkspeed test on iPhone so used the windows laptop which shows speed between 767 and 866.7 with main and deco 3 online 
  2. Deco app shows signal to deco 3 is two of three bars of signal strength.

 

  • Deco 3 is in the plug closest to Lounge/kitchen door and to office. I can move it to the other end of the hall (less than 1m) from current spot and check if it receives three bars.
  • I could move deco 2 into the lounge but that would mean there would prob be 2m between the router and all three Decos which seems overkill?
  • At the moment there are two devices on the devco network (any others are on the router wifi not the deco).  Will adding an additional device impact  or is it better to spread devices between router wifi and deco network?
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#3
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Re:New user questions
2021-10-24 14:17:17 - last edited 2021-10-24 14:30:18

Hi @Alexandre. 

I have tried moving Deco 3 to both the other end of the hall and also in bedroom 1 (which seems to get better reception on router network than the office room next to it) and could not improve the signal strength on Deco 3.

 

I moved Deco 3 into the lounge/kitchen so it gets 3 bars from main deco. This dropped speed in office significantly.

 

Have moved deco 2 to the hallway to try and compensate. iPhone gets 151. Windows laptop 119 and Linktest dropped to 585.

 

Retesting in the lounge.

  • Router connection to iphone 476mbps
  • deco connection to iphone 192.92mbps?
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#4
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Re:New user questions
2021-10-24 14:29:23

@Skipster 

 

What you have found proves my theory: you do not need 3-unit Deco mesh. 2-unit Deco mesh is optimal for your apartment.

 

A little bit of discussion on Deco mesh, and WiFi mesh in general, and recommendation at the end.

 

Discussion

 

With WiFi mesh, more units not always better. What important is positionining of units. Deco mesh (and any other WiFi mesh) Satellite units must be placed approximately in the middle between Main Deco and where WiFi devices are that use Deco mesh.

 

In your case, it should be:

 

Main Deco<------X feet ------->Satellite Deco<------X feet ------->Office

 

In ideal situation, it is exactly same X feet on both sides, but walls, interference from other WiFi networks from neighbours, from appliances could make the difference. That is why I wanted you to test which place is the best, but overall both distances must be similar. 

 

It is normal for Satellite Deco to cut Internet speed by about a half. Comes with technology: you pay for stronger signal with slower speed. Satellite Deco behaves like intelligent range extender. If you need deeper discussion on that topic, google "WiFi range extender cuts bandwidth by half."

In my tests on my home network, with properly positioned Satellite Deco M5, the best I've got from it testing on Android smartphone was 225mbps. What you are getting is close to my top speeds, so this could be as good as it gets for Deco M5.

 

There are technological solutions to somewhat overcome Satellite unit cutting speed by half, in different model of Deco, and this will be in my recommendation.

 

Recommendation

 

I would recommend you return 3-pack Deco M5 and get instead 2-pack Deco M9 Plus. Place M9 Plus units where your your Main and Deco 3 units are, and in the same location you should get better WiFi speeds in the office. I can't promise by how much better they would be, by extra 100mbps, or more (or less than 100), but you should try. Will not be worse that M5. 

In my tests I was getting up to 450-470mbps through Satellite M9 versus Satellite M5 in that same location in my home, but I don't want to get you hopes up too much. Expect about 300mpbs in the office and if that improvement worth your time to return M5 and buy M9, do it.

 

By price, Deco M9 unit is more expensive than Deco M5 unit, but you should be able to find 2-unit Deco M9 Plus set very close in price to what you paid for 3-unit Deco M5 set.

 

 

Answering your other question: "network optimisation always says that the wi-fi channel is congested." If you live in a house with many apartments, it always will be. Because of other neighbours networks. Just ignore it.

In case all you devices can use 5GHz WiFi, turn off 2.4GHz in Deco app for Main Network and it may slightly improve WiFi speeds you are getting. It is because 5GHz has harder time penetrating walls, so less WiFi networks from neighbours will be interfering with yours. Mind you, the improvement could be minimal, but try it if you want to.

 

This is where the setting is in Deco app:

 

 

 

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#5
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Re:New user questions
2021-10-24 15:20:32
Thanks for the recommendations. I need to consider my next move carefully as need to get this resolved properly. Should the decos connect to each other? I noticed that with all three on, both are reaching for Main? Based on having all three, I thought network would go Main > deco 3 > deco 2 with all three talking ? Instead 2 and 3 connect directly to main?
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#6
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Re:New user questions
2021-10-24 15:48:55 - last edited 2021-10-24 15:52:04

@Skipster 

 

This may convince you to switch to 2-pack M9 Plus: speedtest results I ran, two M5 comparing to two M9 Plus. Mind you, what I am sharing are best results I ever got, and I ran over 100 speed tests. You might not get same speeds, but it is good comparison of relative difference in performance between two types of Deco units.

 

I have gigabit Internet. 

 

Deco M5

Main Deco: 460 mbps

Satellite Deco: 225 mbps

 

Deco M9 Plus

Main Deco: 635 mbps

Satellite Deco: 490 mbps

 

You really do not need three units, they won't bring you any benefits. Even if you want to stay with M5, you can keep two units and sell or gift third one, after you remove it from Deco app and do factory reset for it.

 

Yet, if you want to stay with three M5 and test performance of Main > deco 3 > deco 2, here is what you can do. For current official Deco M5 firmware 1.5 there is no option to tell Satellite Deco which Deco to connect to. Satellite Deco will often prefer Main Deco, even if signal between them is not strong. There are good reasons for that, such as every hop reducing speed substantially, but sometimes connecting to Main Deco is not the best choice.

 

In firmware 1.6 user will have an option to configure where Satellite Deco should connect. With that firmware installed, you can configure Deco 2 connect to Deco 3. This firmware is not yet released officially, you can't install it through Deco app, but TP-Link Support shares beta version with users. See more about it here: [New Firmware] Deco M5 1.6.0

You only need to upgrade Deco 2 with firmware 1.6 to be able to make it connect to Deco 3 instead of Main Deco. 

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