Sponsored

Trying to get decent speed from Three 4G home broadband... nearly there!

SimonSays

Member
Hi all - I live close to London, in Surrey, but in an unusually rural pocket near Godstone. We don’t have a phone line because the fixed BB service is under 1mb/sec even on FTTC (we’re 2mi from the green cabinet) so we use 4G broadband services. Since Three started offering an uncapped plan, and we have three Three masts tat we can “see” we’re on that.

I have two Poynting antennas (the XPOL1 and XPOL2) on the outside of the house and best results seem to come from the mast middle distance but with least amount of foliage in the way. I can use my Draytek 2862Ln to measure RSRP (I can get about -85db to -90db).

Here’s the rub: if i` connect up the Huawei B310 supplied by Three, I can get a nice steady 30mbsec-40mbsec and every works well. The only problem is that I *can’t* use the Huawei as it won’t bridge and I need to connect to a fairly large network at home where I use the Draytek to manage policies and a mesh system for access in different parts of the house (thick walls!).

When I use the Draytek’s own LTE access capability, I get erratic speeds, terrible throughput to the fixed network and even full stop. I can’t seem to finds the detail of the profile the Huawei is using sop I can’t simply copy the MTU, or anything else, from there. I’m using the same APN settings as the Huawei and those I found in various places online (three.co.uk and no user/pass) so that feels right.

I figured out that I probably needed to alter the MTU (it was set at 1500 on the Draytek) and used the Draytek’s own Path MTU Discovery functionality to optimise, That process took me to 1396 and that works better but I’m now able to get 25mbsec to 35 mbsec downstream, 10mbsec to 25 mbsec upstream (which is way more than I’ve seen before) on Ookla Speetest but the speed builds slowly and I’m getting frequent timeouts on simple access like webpages and buffering on more intensive access like YouTube and Netflix.

Sorry for the essay - I hope it helps give context and shows what I’ve tried. Can anyone advise further on MTU, or elsewhere if I’m looking in the wrong place?

Many thanks in advance!

Simon
 

GavinAshford

Top Member
Are you sure the Three provided router is a B310? I have a B311 provided from Three and in mid-November it received a software update that enabled bridge mode on it...
 

SimonSays

Member
It’s definitely a B310. I’ve got 3 of them (from when I had multiple SIMs to get enough data). For the sake of a graceful solution I’d like to get the Draytek to handle the job...
 

GavinAshford

Top Member
Maybe some daft questions but are you using the same cable to the antenna for the B310 as the Draytek? I assume you're just swapping that over and there are no differences that could result in signal quality decreases?

Also, did you try the '3internet' APN? That's their mobile broadband APN whereas three.co.uk is usually used for their mobile phone APN. Not that I think this would change any result...

I am also assuming that the testing you've been doing is within minutes of eachother and not, for example, testing the B310 off-peak and Draytek at peak time where speeds and capacity on a mast would naturally drop?
 

SimonSays

Member
Thanks, Gavin - not daft questions... But yes, I simply swapped antenna cables and did it within a minute, maintained antenna direction, etc.

I did try the two different APNs - I have a few different routers, phones, etc to test and the APN always reverts to three.co.uk

it’s worth mentioning that I have ruled out any signal
issues with Three (no maintenance, etc) and that I have confirmed that my IM is not throttled or restricted in some other way.
 

GavinAshford

Top Member
Do you know which bands the routers are connecting to?

I'm wondering if the B310 connects on B20 (800mhz) but the Draytek is just about latching onto B3 (1800mhz).

B3 on the Draytek would explain why you're seeing improved upload speeds as B20 only gives 12.5mbps upload theoretical max, but it also may explain the intermittent download connection as it's struggling to keep connected.
 

twocats

Casual Member
I have a B310 connected to a Asus RT-AC87U

I just run a OpenVPN server on the Asus which allows me to connect to my internal network from outside.

I take it you need more functionality than just that.
 

SimonSays

Member
Good question, @GavinAshford ... I don't know which bands I ma on (how would I tell?) but I know the Draytek is capable of and is set to connect on a whole range (image attached). I can easily unselect some of these, but I don't know which at this point.

12.5Mbps upstream would be loads for me, if it helped keep the connection as a whole more reliable.

I did notice in a couple of Ookla Speedtests that I am getting between 1 and 4% packet loss. That feels very high to me... could this be MTU related (I'm obviously obsessed with the MTU!)? It's a different network and mast, but I get consistent 0% packet loss on my O2 iPhone 11 (indoors, 3-4 bars).

@twocats - thanks for that... I'd really like to get the Draytek working but I appreciate there may be other ways to skin the cat using the B310.

FWIW, I had a closer look at the B311 and I think, I'm right in saying that it only has a single SMA connector? The B310 has a pair that may well be helping me out on the signal front (if not the Bridge Mode front!)... swings and roundabouts, as ever! :)
 

Attachments

GavinAshford

Top Member
Ah yes, you're right, the B311 does indeed only have one connector, I had forgotten that (I don't use an external antenna).

I don't have enough knowledge about MTU and what changing those values would do/mean - sorry I can't help or advise there.

As for the frequency bands. I think if you go into some of the advanced settings of the B310 it should, somewhere, show you the 'Cell ID', if you post that we can find out what mast, sector and band the B310 is probably using by looking that up on cellmapper.
On my B311 the Cell ID is found under Advanced > System > Device information, but yours might be different if the UI is different.

With your Draytek, you could try de-selecting Band 3 and it should then fall back to using B20. If that then gives you a similar speed as the B310 does, and maintains a more reliable connection like the B310 then that would suggest B20 is what the B310 connects to, and not B3.
Equally, if you de-select B20 on the Draytek and the higher speed but temperamental connection still occurs the. That would suggest it is connecting to B3, though unreliably.

I must stress that 12.5mbps upload is the theoretical maximum value, and even in ideal conditions with no other users connected you'd be unlikely to see that.
 

Verita

Regular Member
Re: MTU

The Tplink site gives a good example of how to test:


My MTU in the B311 is set to the default of 1500, but testing in a CMD window says 1450 is better.

The command is ping www.tp-link.com -f -l xxxx

where xxxx is your desired MTU (1500, or 1450 etc). You can test with other sites like Google, etc.

This is giving good results (on a B311 with the 3Internet APN.)

Clipboard01.jpg
 

gjc

Member
Hi,

Can you connect an ethernet cable between the B310 and the Draytek?

I am in a similar situation to you semi rural, 2 mile from the cabinet, rubbish wired broadband speeds, but line of site to a Three cell tower.

I have my setup working great for me. I have gone for a high spec 4G router because I figure this is the weakest link in my network. I have a Netgear Nighthawk M2 mobile hostspot (not cheap but you get what you pay for) connected to a Pyonting Xpol2 antenna with direct line of site to the cell tower. Then from this router I connect to my home netwrok via a Lan cable. I use my home network for all my devices and the 4G router only to do the 4g stuff and not for Wifi. Using the 4g as a gateway like this your home network can be anything you like as long as you can connect it to the 4g router with a lan cable.

With this setup my speeds top out at 170 mbps down and 40 mbps up, of cource I can't always achieve these speeds but my download speed rarely drops below 100mbps. So I am more than happy with this epsecialy compared to the absolutely dire situation I was in with wired broadband.
 

Jonw

Member
Did you have any luck with MTU or MSS clamping or similar?
Hi,

Can you connect an ethernet cable between the B310 and the Draytek?

I am in a similar situation to you semi rural, 2 mile from the cabinet, rubbish wired broadband speeds, but line of site to a Three cell tower.

I have my setup working great for me. I have gone for a high spec 4G router because I figure this is the weakest link in my network. I have a Netgear Nighthawk M2 mobile hostspot (not cheap but you get what you pay for) connected to a Pyonting Xpol2 antenna with direct line of site to the cell tower. Then from this router I connect to my home netwrok via a Lan cable. I use my home network for all my devices and the 4G router only to do the 4g stuff and not for Wifi. Using the 4g as a gateway like this your home network can be anything you like as long as you can connect it to the 4g router with a lan cable.

With this setup my speeds top out at 170 mbps down and 40 mbps up, of cource I can't always achieve these speeds but my download speed rarely drops below 100mbps. So I am more than happy with this epsecialy compared to the absolutely dire situation I was in with wired broadband.
- I’m using Netgear MR1100 in Bridgeport mode getting mostly good speed with same antenna as you but often high latency and speed ramps up - I switched to 3internet and got a public up address but seems no different - have changed mtu to 1492 which seems highest without fragmenting

Ah yes, you're right, the B311 does indeed only have one connector, I had forgotten that (I don't use an external antenna).

I don't have enough knowledge about MTU and what changing those values would do/mean - sorry I can't help or advise there.

As for the frequency bands. I think if you go into some of the advanced settings of the B310 it should, somewhere, show you the 'Cell ID', if you post that we can find out what mast, sector and band the B310 is probably using by looking that up on cellmapper.
On my B311 the Cell ID is found under Advanced > System > Device information, but yours might be different if the UI is different.

With your Draytek, you could try de-selecting Band 3 and it should then fall back to using B20. If that then gives you a similar speed as the B310 does, and maintains a more reliable connection like the B310 then that would suggest B20 is what the B310 connects to, and not B3.
Equally, if you de-select B20 on the Draytek and the higher speed but temperamental connection still occurs the. That would suggest it is connecting to B3, though unreliably.

I must stress that 12.5mbps upload is the theoretical maximum value, and even in ideal conditions with no other users connected you'd be unlikely to see that.
 
Top
Promotion
Cheapest Superfast ISPs
  • Hyperoptic £19.95 (*22.00)
    Avg. Speed 50Mbps, Unlimited
    Gift: Promo Code: HYPER20
  • NOW TV £22.00 (*40.00)
    Avg. Speed 36Mbps, Unlimited
    Gift: None
  • SSE £22.00
    Avg. Speed 35Mbps, Unlimited
    Gift: None
  • xln telecom £22.74 (*47.94)
    Avg. Speed 66Mbps, Unlimited
    Gift: None
  • Vodafone £22.95
    Avg. Speed 35Mbps, Unlimited
    Gift: None
Prices inc. Line Rental | View All
Helpful ISP Guides and Tips
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
»
Promotion
The Top 20 Category Tags
  1. BT (2695)
  2. FTTP (2537)
  3. FTTC (1740)
  4. Building Digital UK (1683)
  5. Politics (1577)
  6. Openreach (1540)
  7. Business (1359)
  8. FTTH (1280)
  9. Statistics (1189)
  10. Mobile Broadband (1159)
  11. Fibre Optic (1035)
  12. 4G (1000)
  13. Ofcom Regulation (986)
  14. Wireless Internet (985)
  15. Virgin Media (962)
  16. EE (668)
  17. Sky Broadband (649)
  18. TalkTalk (633)
  19. Vodafone (625)
  20. 5G (462)
Sponsored

Copyright © 1999 to Present - ISPreview.co.uk - All Rights Reserved - Terms  ,  Privacy and Cookie Policy  ,  Links  ,  Website Rules