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Starlink Offers High Performance Broadband Dish to Homes

Friday, Sep 16th, 2022 (8:08 am) - Score 11,072

SpaceX’s global Low Earth Orbit (LEO) based ultrafast satellite broadband service – Starlink – has made it possible for residential customers to optionally take their “High Performance” dish (antenna) instead of the “Standard” one, which could result in better service performance (speeds). But you’ll need deep pockets.

Starlink’s mega constellation currently has around 3,023 LEO satellites in orbit around the Earth and their initial plan is to deploy a total of 4,425 by 2024. Customers in the UK normally pay from £75 per month and £460 for the kit (standard dish, router etc.). But for that you can expect unlimited usage, fast latency times of 20-40ms, downloads of c. 50-200Mbps and uploads of c.10-20Mbps (speeds may change as the network grows).

NOTE: The compact satellites weigh about 260Kg each and orbit the Earth at an altitude of c.550 kilometres (vs 35,000km for the traditional GSO platforms).

However, residential customers can now optionally choose whether they take the “Standard” dish or Starlink’s “High Performance” alternative, which was previously only made available to those taking the provider’s more expensive ‘Premium’ business package.

The high-performance dish is a much more durable piece of hardware and one that can see more of the sky, which overall tends to deliver greater connection stability and performance. The catch is that it’ll set you back $2,500 (vs $599 for the standard dish). We haven’t put a GBP price on that because our test order didn’t give us the option to take it, thus we’re currently unsure whether it’s available to UK users yet.

Stated Benefits of High Performance Dish

➤ Improved weather resistance.
High performance is rated IP56, or resistant to water jets. Standard is rated IP54, or resistant to water spray.

➤ Better performance in hot weather.
Download speeds are typically 3x better at > 35°C (95°F)

➤ Better performance in the snow:
1.7x better snow melt capability (Inches/hour). Put another way, it melts up to 40mm / hour (1.5in / hour) vs up to 75mm / hour (3in / hour).

➤ Better visibility of satellites.
Your Starlink needs a clear view of the sky so it can stay connected with satellites as they move overhead. The High Performance can see 35% more sky, allowing it to connect to more satellites and better serve users with atypical installations, unavoidable obstructions, or in polar (>59 degrees latitude) and equatorial regions where there are fewer visible satellites.

Put another way, it has a 140° field of view, which compares with just 100° degrees on the standard dish.

We should point out that there are other differences too, such as is in terms of power consumption (very relevant in the current climate). The standard dish has an Average Power Usage of 50-75 Watts, while the High Performance kit averages 110-150 Watts. It’s also physically a bit larger and with double the antenna capability.

According to Starlink, users of the high performance dish can expect download speeds of between 150 to 300Mbps (capacity allowing – the operator’s network is already putting pressure on this). Hopefully one day this will become the standard for all customers, albeit at the normal price.

In any case, if you’re lucky enough to have $2,500 to throw around at such things, then this may be a useful way of improving your mileage. But at present this only seems to be offered to new customers and existing customers will still need to take Starlink’s business plan if they want to get a better dish, which seems a bit silly.

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28 Responses
  1. Avatar photo Chris Sayers says:

    “which seems a bit silly.” Master of of understatement @Mark Jackson

  2. Avatar photo NGA for all says:

    ‘fast latency’ ? 20-40ms is not even low latency but perhaps lower latency, you want it less than 10ms for all real time comms.

    1. Mark-Jackson Mark Jackson says:

      In the context of a satellite service, it’s exceptionally fast and not too far off what you’d get on an ADSL and some slower VDSL line, which is enough for more or less everything of importance.

    2. Avatar photo barry says:

      I get 33-35ms on crappy 5G which is under 100mbps – This sounds good in comparison!

    3. Avatar photo NGA for all says:

      Latency is ‘delay’ so can never be fast. It is worse than continually mistaking throughput for speed.

    4. Avatar photo An Engineer says:

      For some applications perhaps but definitely not all. By that metric a person in Scotland could have fibre plugged into their brain directly and it would be unsuitable for ‘all real time comms’ with nearly all the Internet users in the UK.

      Only thing I’ve seen suggesting requirements for latency in that range is remotely processed, streamed VR.

    5. Avatar photo Buggs8 says:

      Welcome back barry / simon / anna / anon / whatever.

      Forgot about yesterday’s BT leased line and last week’s Daisy service?



      What happened to the Sky Superfast FTTP?

    6. Avatar photo Humphrey says:

      It’s probably out there somewhere. I don’t know I’ve never had Sky. I know people who have, and they get get 500/60 which is not really superfast in my eyes but there you go.. poor people’s internet lame consumer crap where even the 10Gbps is only 45% of the actual headline figure.

      Daisy is still the in win – 5G is the backup, never said it was not.

      And it’s Humphrey today if that’s ok with you? 🙂

    7. Avatar photo Buggs8 says:

      Nice try and predictable. Makes absolutely no sense complaining about 5G speeds being poor compared to Starlink if you’ve full fibre to home.

      You posted a screenshot you claimed was from your Sky account showing you were on Sky Superfast with no Gigafast available when trying to tell people Sky didn’t offer gigabit.

      You’re now saying you’ve never had Sky and have no FTTP available. At least one of those is a lie.

      You’re claiming having Daisy again after saying how you wouldn’t move from BT only yesterday. At least one of those, and almost certainly both, are lies.

      You could’ve at least claimed that was someone else but have confirmed.

      So I believe this year you’ve gone from BT to having nothing due to install problems and it breaking your G.fast to Daisy to BT and back to Daisy.

      This is the trouble with hardly ever telling the truth. It’s really hard to keep track of the lies and the truth stands out.

    8. Avatar photo Buggs8 Deleted says:

      Watch out there’s a Humphrey about or is that a Barry or Anon?

    9. Avatar photo Anon says:

      Buggs8, unrelated to this article, but I’ve left a few comments on this website under the “anon” name and I’m not any of the persons you mentioned. It’s just that – for some reason – the website doesn’t remember my username or email. Type some random username and email and you’re done.

      Essentially, it’s a mistake to assume they are all the same people.

    10. Avatar photo Buggs8 Deleted says:

      @Anon says “Type some random username and email and you’re done.”

      Well it seems random sentences of lies to go with the random username and email.

    11. Avatar photo Humphrey says:

      Only that’s not me and I leave my real name and e-mail address and my real static IP with every post

      So maybe you should keep up – not like we don’t all know who you are too – posting under this and another name which is a 4 letter word starting with C (and not the one you actually deserve either)

    12. Avatar photo Buggs8 says:

      –posting under this and another name which is a 4 letter word starting with C

      Is there anyone posting using a 4 letter name starting with ‘C’ on here? I don’t.

      –I leave my real name and e-mail address and my real static IP with every post

      So why would you reply to a post to ‘barry’ about his 5G and argue regarding simon claiming to be on Daisy, barry on BT and that you are _still_ on Daisy? What would you care or know unless you’re all one and the same?

      Back in a week.

      Anon: I appreciate that there are at least two posters using the name. I definitely didn’t mean any offence to you.

    13. Avatar photo Buggs8 says:

      Searched an article on here looking for XGSPON. Read comments.


      February 2020. You were on about your imaginary leased line over two and a half years ago. Topic not really related but had to jump in to tell everyone how much it was costing.

      I apologise. I don’t think you’re knowingly lying. I think when you write these things you genuinely believe them. I hope you’re able to get the support you need and wish you luck.

    14. Avatar photo Buggs8 says:

      Definitely back in a week now. Time to board. All the best.

    15. Avatar photo MrD says:

      I agree “Fast” latency is confusing.
      “Low” “High” or something similar is best used to describe latency.
      20ms is nothing to complain about in terms of latency. Considering the target market for this product (those who likely have poor 3g/4g, traditional sat, dial-up) then even the 40ms is nothing anyone would be angry about.
      If your unhappy living near society then 20ms-40ms latency is not going to upset you at all.

  3. Avatar photo NE555 says:

    “the High Performance kit averages 110-150 Watts”

    …which they manage to spin into a benefit: it melts snow faster!!

    1. Avatar photo Jonny says:

      That’s £30-40 per month just in electricity 😮

    2. Avatar photo An Engineer says:

      Even more cosy place for the cat to sleep.

    3. Avatar photo NE555 says:

      Bring back CRT monitors 🙂

    4. Avatar photo Laurence 'GreenReaper' Parry says:

      Close, yeah. 24 hours of 110W over 39 days is £26.93 under the new 34.0p/kWH cap – not including the larger standing charge.

  4. Avatar photo AFG says:

    When space x Internet is com to Afghanistan? We need most!

    1. Avatar photo MrTruth says:

      AFG says “When space x Internet is com to Afghanistan? We need most!”

      I would have thought Afghan people have other priorities at the moment than paying high prices for broadband.

    2. Avatar photo Andy says:

      Very fair question, doesn’t need ‘splaining from an ignorant Brit.

      It would help communities, organisations (both profit and non-profit) and those who can afford it and would benefit for their work and may therefore be able to justify the price. Those may be few, but there will be some.

      No need to be snarky and patronising, how do you think Afghanistan will solve their own problems without making use of modern technology to catch up with the rest of the world? Don’t you think it would be useful for education, which is probably where such catching up begins?

      Of course it is unlikely Elon will prioritise Afghanistan because $, but why would someone take time out of their day to argue they settle for that? #partoftheproblem

      If you don’t ask, you don’t get. I dont think Elon is a natural philanthropist, but he helped out in Ukraine, so you never know, he might realise the potential for the democratisation of education to which his service could contribute, there and elsewhere.

  5. Avatar photo Jez says:

    “Fast latency”, what kind of terminology is this XD

    1. Avatar photo Laurence 'GreenReaper' Parry says:

      It’s a relative measure. I mean, Fast Ethernet is only 100Mbps…

    2. Avatar photo MrD says:

      Fast Ethernet is fine, even though it’s 100 Mbps.
      Ethernet is 10 Mbps.
      Going from 10 to 100 to me it seems the naming of it to “Fast” works well. Also it was more of a “name” than a descriptor – though it works as both.
      Now, lets not get me started on TbE, because 400 GbE getting called Terabit Ethernet makes no sense to me.. (Perhaps they are hoping for a Gbase to Nbase type transition later *shrug*)
      Ethernet (10 Mb) > Fast Ethernet (100 Mb) > Gigabit/GbE (1000 Mb/1Gb) > Newer stuff

Comments are closed

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