3 Replies Latest reply: Oct 6, 2013 11:18 AM by Tesserax
duder82 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

I've got the newer Airport Express model and I've having a heck of a time getting reasonable speeds on it. Here's my situation:

 

-Have a 150 mbps internet package. When plugged into modem directly, my mac picks up speeds of nearly 160 mbps

-With Airport Express the top range I have ever gotten is 75 mbps

-Lately, the AE has been really all over the place; I had a speed of 10 - 20 yesterday; this morning it's hovering around 40.

-I've tinkered with virtually every setting on the AE, including trying different versions of the AE software. Right now I've just set it to automatic everything as it doesn't seem like anything I do makes much of a difference. I've also tried placing the AE in different parts of my apartment; no difference.

 

This is driving me crazy! Any ideas here? Should I just cut my losses and go with the Airport Extreme (or another router)? I've got a small place and I thought that the Express would solve my networking needs, but it's performance has been hugely disappointing. Help me out here!

 

FYI, I use a 2-year-old iMac and an iPhone 5, if that helps clarify anything.

  • Tesserax Level 8 Level 8 (49,245 points)

    -Have a 150 mbps internet package. When plugged into modem directly, my mac picks up speeds of nearly 160 mbps

    What are you using to take these measurements?

     

    -With Airport Express the top range I have ever gotten is 75 mbps

    Is this measurement made with your computer connected to the Express by Ethernet or by wireless?

     

    What are the RSSI, Transmit Rate, & MCS Index values on the OS X menu bar's AirPort icon drop-down menu. Note: Hold down the Option key before clicking on the AirPort icon to access these.

  • duder82 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Thanks for responding.

     

    I've been using speedtest to do the measurement. 150 mbps was wired, 75 (and this is the fastest it's ever been, but currently it's only getting between 20-40) wireless.

     

    RRSI: -62

    Transmit Rate: 162

    MCS Index: 13

  • Tesserax Level 8 Level 8 (49,245 points)

    Ok, a couple of things to consider:

    1. Based on the MCS Index value, the wireless connection between the Mac and the Express is using two spatial streams which gives is a maximum data link rate of 104 Mbps (2.4 GHz) or 240 Mbps (5 GHz).
    2. The WAN-to-LAN throughput perfomance of the Express can only support a maximum of 93 Mbps.

     

    So these are some of the facts, but not necessarily the reasons why you are getting those measurements.

     

    Please understand that the Internet speed tests measure the average throughput of a data package between their test server and your computer. As such it averages the combined data rates of the server, Internet link, your ISP's link to your modem, the modem passthrough, the router's interface, and your wireless network. It also doesn't necessarily measure all types of traffic between two end-points.

     

    To best troubleshoot you would need to break down each of these links to determine the real bottlenecks. One thing we know is that the data throughput performance of your Express may not be sufficient enough for the bandwidth that your ISP is providing you.