AE, AEBS and U-verse DSL

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by mic j, Mar 14, 2015.

  1. mic j macrumors 68030

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    Mar 15, 2012
    #1
    After seeing a few other threads on using powerline adapters, I started thinking (always a dangerous and usually costly function). My U-verse DSL (2Wire "g" gateway comes into my basement. Currently I have my AEBS connected to it. Also in the basement is my TV and aTV3. Being so close to the AEBS, I get really fast response from the aTV. However, upstairs and quite a bit away from the AEBS (not the latest version, no "ac"), I have our laptops and an AE (gen1 "n"; set to join network) to AirPlay music to my stereo. I have been experiencing some iTunes dropouts on the stereo. Data transmission rates on my MBP's are usually 78-100Mbps. So here is where I am going with this:

    Would I have a better (faster and more reliable) setup, moving my AEBS upstairs (connected to the gateway using a powerline adapter) and moving the AE to the basement (connected to the aTV either by powerline adapter or directly to the gateway)? Seems like the AEBS would be better off supplying my MBP's and stereo and the AE to supply the aTV. Is my logic correct?

    I understand that powerline adapters can be hit or miss, so no guarantees (but can always return them).
     
  2. Altemose macrumors G3

    Altemose

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    Elkton, Maryland
    #2
    The issue with that plan that I can see is that the Extreme does not have an audio out port like the Express. Is it possible to run regular Ethernet cable through the house and forego all powerline adapters altogether?
     
  3. mic j thread starter macrumors 68030

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    #3
    You are absolutely right!!! Never thought of that part. I knew it was too good to be true. Don't want to run ethernet through the house (even if we could) as we are selling the house this year.

    But I appreciate you pointing out the audio port weakness. Saves me the hassle of ordering the adapter only to figure that out after the fact.
     
  4. Altemose macrumors G3

    Altemose

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    #4
    In all honesty, I would keep the setup as is and maybe use power line adapters to connect the Express to the Extreme. When you get into your new house, consider a new AirPort setup for your needs.
     
  5. mic j thread starter macrumors 68030

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    #5
    Exactly the conclusion I had come to.

    Thanks for your help.
     
  6. Altemose macrumors G3

    Altemose

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    #6
    No problem! Report back with any issues or questions.
     
  7. mic j thread starter macrumors 68030

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    #7
    I started a different thread on this with a variation of this topic. Since you answered this specific question, I though it more appropriate to start a new thread tackling other question. Maybe you could look at that and give me your opinion...if you don't mind. Currently getting about 58Mb/s with AE and about 117Mb/s with MBP in same room. Still trying to decide if powerline adapter will help out the AE. My thinking at this point is that even if the speed stayed around the same, using it to extend the network through ethernet would separate the competition for bandwidth between the AE and MBP. Thoughts?
     
  8. Altemose macrumors G3

    Altemose

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    #8

    I don't think it is a "competition of bandwidth" but rather that the signal is not strong enough with low enough latency for the music to play properly. Power line networking would likely lower the latency. 50+ Mbps is plenty for music streaming, but if there is high latency, interference, or packet loss then problems will occur.
     
  9. mic j thread starter macrumors 68030

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    #9
    I actually think it might have to do with interference, because sometimes if I download to my iPhone the music cuts out. Also, I can go all day without a dropout but after my wife comes home from work (she has 2 iPhones), I sometimes get a lot of dropouts. So it seems like something is changing. I have tried changing channels and it might have helped some but did not entirely eliminate the problem.

    Anyway, I ordered the powerline adapters. So hopefully my home circuits are good and connecting the AE wired to the AEBS and having the MBP on wifi will help things out. Once I get the adapters and ensure they work ok, I am also going to try to extend the network and see what impact that has, both on AirPlay and my MBP. Thanks for your input, it's been very helpful.

    Edit: also if I can get a good network extension, it might allow me to use the 5GHz band (which doesn't reach from my basement to my main floor) and reduce interference.
     
  10. Altemose macrumors G3

    Altemose

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    #10
    You could try changing the wireless channel in use and seeing if that aids anything. Since the power line adapters are ordered, just make sure they are plugged directly into an outlet and not any strip or something. I have seen cases with issues when plugged into a strip or surge protector.
     
  11. mic j thread starter macrumors 68030

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    Mar 15, 2012
    #11
    I did do a scan yesterday using the Airport Utility "Scan" app, and changed the channel based on it's suggestion of a better channel.

    Yes, I will plug the adapters directly into the wall outlet. Thanks for the suggestions.
     
  12. Altemose macrumors G3

    Altemose

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    #12

    Report back with any issues!
     
  13. mic j thread starter macrumors 68030

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    #13
    Will do!
     
  14. mic j thread starter macrumors 68030

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    #14
    Update

    Have installed the powerline adapters but am having a problem. My gateway keeps losing internet connection and airplay stops. Only seems to happen with the AE is connected. I know, that probably sounds really strange as my setup is: AT&T Uverse DSL>2Wire gateway> AEBS>TP 500 powerline adapter. AE set to join network.

    With this setup Airport Utility shows the "internet" going amber for a time, re-establishing connection (green) for a time and so on. Disconnect the AE and everything is stable.

    No idea why something as far upstream as the AE would cause my gateway to lose connection. Tomorrow, I am going to set it to extend network and see if I get the same thing going on.
     
  15. Altemose macrumors G3

    Altemose

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    #15
    No. Factory reset the Express. You are having it join wirelessly and via Ethernet. It is causing a loop.
     
  16. mic j thread starter macrumors 68030

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    #16
    Thanks for the hint. Will try tomorrow (wife currently online) and let you know the outcome.
     
  17. Altemose macrumors G3

    Altemose

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    #17
    I look forward to hearing the outcome.
     
  18. mic j, Mar 18, 2015
    Last edited: Mar 18, 2015

    mic j thread starter macrumors 68030

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    #18
    You are da man!!!

    Resetting the AE with the adapter connected did the trick. Upon restart, it set automatically as extending network using ethernet. Didn't really give me an option to "join the network". So I just left it that way as it has increased my upstairs transmission rate from mid 70's to 130-140Mbps (S/N around 30). No dropping of internet connection. Will have to wait and see if this solves the AirPlay drop out issue as that often happens in the evenings when me and my wife are both using our various devices. But so far, so good.

    Thanks so much for your help.

    One more question: If I go into Airport Utility and select to edit the AE, the Wireless tab shows the create a wireless network selected. Is this what I want? It also gives me the option to join or extend. During setup it said it was extending, so I am not quite sure why create is selected. Just trying to figure out the optimal setup. Thanks.
     
  19. Altemose macrumors G3

    Altemose

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    #19
    Yes. That is exactly what you want! "Extend over Ethernet" means to create a wireless network with identical settings as the main base station, set to bridge mode, and enable DHCP to join as an AP.
     
  20. mic j, Mar 19, 2015
    Last edited: Mar 19, 2015

    mic j thread starter macrumors 68030

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    #20
    Well...all was good until I tried something after reading your post. Went into Airport Utility, saw that "create wireless network" was selected, changed it to "extend wireless network" and nothing is working since. Tried factory reset of the AE (while plugged into wireless adapter). Blinking yellow light. Airport Utility sees it as "other wifi device". When I click on that is says reading settings then gives me an unknown error. Have tried restarting everything in sequence (gateway>AEBS>AE) with no good news.

    This is why I hate networking. Any ideas on what I should try next?

    Update: Never mind. Last factory reset was the charm. Everything working again.
     
  21. Fishrrman macrumors G3

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2009
    #21
    OP wrote above:
    [[ Update: Never mind. Last factory reset was the charm. Everything working again. ]]

    I'd either take screenshots or make a note of current settings, and just leave it be!

    What brand of powerline adapters did you use?
     
  22. mic j thread starter macrumors 68030

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    #22
    TP-Link AV500
     
  23. Altemose macrumors G3

    Altemose

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    #23
    Why did you change the settings if I said they were correct? :rolleyes:
    Extend a Network from within the "Wireless" tab is used for wireless extension only and not via Ethernet.
     
  24. mic j thread starter macrumors 68030

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    Mar 15, 2012
    #24
    Because I mis-interpreted your good instructions. My fault.:eek:

    Your help has been invaluable not only to getting my network running but also increasing my understanding. Thanks for your help.

    One question (and I think I might know the answer): My MBP connects to the AE using 2.4GHz even though it is in the same room as the AE. If I am in the same room with my AEBS it connects using 5GHz band. Should it be connecting with the AE using 5GHz when I am in close proximity to the AE?
     
  25. Altemose macrumors G3

    Altemose

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    Mar 26, 2013
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    Elkton, Maryland
    #25

    The first generation Wireless N Express was limited to 2.4 GHz to my knowledge. 5 GHz "simultaneous dual band" wireless was added with the second generation Express. The Extreme has been 5 GHz capable since the 2009 3rd generation Extreme.
     

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