How to get maximum speed from turbo’ed UniFi 800mbps in Malaysia

Recently, most of us are greeted with good news that we will get double the speed and half the cost for our broadband, which is among the slowest in the world…

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With the upgrade in broadband speed, we expect our experience in anything internet will be much faster than before. The reality only kicks in after the upgrade was completed.

First, TM claimed that the modern router that was provided by TM upon signing up their UniFi package cannot support the 800mps. As seen by the photo below, most of us are supplied with Archer C1200 or AC1200 as the default router for all the different speed packages from 30mbps to 800mbps.

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As i want to realise the real speed of what a 800mbps optic fibre can bring, i went about to uncover the real problem behind all this. Whether is it true that TM has been shortchanging customers for decades now or whether it is really the issue with our PC, line interferences and other nonsense excuses that we have heard many times from different TM technical teams whom have visited our homes to solve the speed issue.

First off, the default router TM provided to us is definitely insufficient as demonstrated by the above image. Anything above 300mbps, you will need a router that can support that speed. Straight up, TM would not admit but their management have been using one size fits all approach for a long time now. Yes, i know it is good for the streamline and profitability but not so much for the normal consumers.

An average person subscribed to a 100mbps package will only get about 30mbps speed with speed test. With 800mbps, WITHOUT changing the router, you will get around 200mbps with 5Ghz Channel. This is no different to just subscribing 300mbps and pay less for the same amount of speed.

What frustrates me is that the technical team does not seem to care or try to find ways to help boost up the speed. The normal excuses are that that’s the “best” they can do and replace the router to a “Asus” router.

I did just that!

I got a router that is approved for 800mbps. That definitely burnt a big hole in my pocket. Upon installing and trying out for a few days, i felt the speed at best is about 10–20% better than the old AC1200 router. So, what is going on here? I followed all the advices that was given to me by TM technical team and i still cannot get acceptable speed from UniFi 800mbps. Their definition of acceptable speed is 75%, which is 600mbps.

Because i have spent alot of money on upgrading this, i was determined to do one better. What i have found out from here on has not been told to me by TM before.

WiFi

In our modern dual channel router, we have two channel: 2.4Ghz and 5Ghz. Channel width controls how large of a “pipe” ‘is available to transfer data. However, larger channels are more subject to interference and more likely to interfere with other devices. A 40MHz channel is sometimes called a wide channel, and a 20MHz channel is a narrow channel. Basically, higher channel bandwidths can support a higher data rate and more bandwidth.

Use 20MHz channels in the 2.4GHz band to achieve 110mbps

Using 40MHz channels in the 2.4GHz band can cause performance and reliability issues with your network, especially in the presence of other Wi-Fi networks and other 2.4GHz devices. A 40MHz channel might also cause interference and issues with other devices that use this band, such as Bluetooth devices, cordless phones, and neighboring Wi-Fi networks. Especially with iOS devices, it is advisable to use 20MHz instead of 40MHz. WiFi dropping has been reported with 40MHz.

Only clients capable of 802.11ac will be able to connect to 80MHz channel. 5GHz channel has less interference issues.

Use 80MHz channels in the 5GHz band to achieve 500mbps

In conclusion, as everyone is setting up these routers in the vicinity, “interferences” from these WiFi actually causes the broadband speed to slow down. In Layman’s terms, these settings are ideal to achieve the fastest speed we can hope to achieve with UniFi 800mbps.

With that, i am happy to report that after 4 months of troubleshooting and experimenting with all sorts of routers and settings, it is the channel bandwidth that is so poorly understood that limits the real broadband speeds that we can get. Cheaper router will only have 20/40MHz.

For now, I am cruising at 500mbps and the WiFi no longer drops. I wish TM technical team knows this earlier. This shows that TM sometimes really do not develop their staffs enough to know how to troubleshoot these simple problems. Imagine day to day, moving from house to house, practically doing the same thing: improve the broadband speed. How silly can one be to not “know” of this?

Written by

Sarawak Blogger

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