AirPlay experiencing intermittent disruptions

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by BreakGuy, Dec 9, 2011.

  1. BreakGuy macrumors 6502a

    BreakGuy

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    Nov 23, 2009
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    NZ, South Pacific
    #1
    I'm in dire need of a resolution to this issue that's been plaguing me for sheer months now and still after multiple calls for help, no solution has been found.

    I have an Airport Express in my bedroom, connected wirelessly to the existing network. I have my surround sound system connected to the Airport Express and that's all. There is no ethernet nor USB device connected to the Airport Express.

    Now, whenever I'm in iTunes and trying to play music through the surround sound system via Airport Express it seems to frequently intermittently cut out and come back a few seconds later. At times, there are extended periods of silence.

    There doesn't seem to be an issue with the connection to the network as the steady green light remains just that, steady and green. It's also not an issue with the Airport Express device itself as I've swapped it with other Airport Express devices in the house and they experience the same issues in this location, yet operate without a hitch in other areas of the house.

    I really need a fix to this issue. Any ideas, advice, suggestions, opinions will be greatly appreciated. Thank you.
     
  2. waw74 macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    May 27, 2008
    #2
    sounds like you're not getting a clean signal.

    move the express away from other electronics as far as possible. cordless phones, baby monitors and microwave ovens all work on the same frequency.

    imagine a line between the express and your main router, does this pass through your stereo at the end, or maybe through a kitchen with cabinets full of metal pans? try to move it so that it doesn't do that.

    is the express inside a cabinet? or tucked in behind things? try moving it out into the open.
     
  3. BreakGuy thread starter macrumors 6502a

    BreakGuy

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    #3
    It does appear that the kitchen is in the firing line between the router and AirPort Express. The only electronics that the AirPort Express is around is the TV and surround sound system, but then again the AirPort Express in the lounge is tucked away in behind a TV, surround sound system, PS3, DVD player etc and works fine; however, the kitchen is not in its line of sight.

    I'll move the AirPort Express to the other end of my bedroom, which should mean it's not in line with the kitchen. If it works, I'll know it's interference from the kitchen and will need to get a hell of a long 3.5mm auxiliary cord so I can connect it to the surround sound system. If it doesn't work, well... who knows?
     
  4. BreakGuy thread starter macrumors 6502a

    BreakGuy

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    #4
    Alright, so I've repositioned the AirPort Express to the other end of my bedroom, but alas the interruptions still persist.
     
  5. apunkrockmonk macrumors 6502a

    apunkrockmonk

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  6. BreakGuy thread starter macrumors 6502a

    BreakGuy

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    #6
    Is there a way I can measure the packet loss that's occurring?
     
  7. marc11 macrumors 68000

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    #7
    Any cordless phones or microwave ovens in between or near aebs or express? When used they can cause interference.
     
  8. BreakGuy thread starter macrumors 6502a

    BreakGuy

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    #8
    Nothing in the line of sight that I would suspect is the cause, and anything nearby wouldn't be the culprit as they'd be interfering with the other AirPort Express devices in the house.
     
  9. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

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    May 16, 2008
    #9
    Interference sources don't have to be in the line of sight, only in the area. They can even be sources from outside, that may affect one part of your house, but not reach far enough to affect others.
     
  10. BreakGuy thread starter macrumors 6502a

    BreakGuy

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    #10
    True. In fact there is nothing in it's line of sight. As for things nearby, there's a landline next to the router, and a microwave a few yards from the router in the kitchen.
     
  11. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

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    #11
    What about sources from outside? Neighboring houses?
     
  12. BreakGuy thread starter macrumors 6502a

    BreakGuy

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    #12
    Nothing that I can think of. Only one other WiFi network operating on the same channel, 6. Only problem is, when I attempt to change the channel our network operates on everything slows down. 6 is the best channel for us despite the nearby network also being on channel 6.
     
  13. apunkrockmonk macrumors 6502a

    apunkrockmonk

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    #13
    What kind of router do you have?

    Honestly I don't know how to measure packet loss on a local network.
     
  14. BreakGuy thread starter macrumors 6502a

    BreakGuy

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    #14
    It's a DLINK DSL-G604T
     
  15. GGJstudios, Dec 11, 2011
    Last edited: Dec 11, 2011

    GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

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    #15
    Remember, it's not just other WiFi networks. When you click on the AirPort icon on your Menu Bar and you see the search for other networks, it's common for several to show up from neighboring buildings. That's an indication of how far signals, including interference signals, can travel. It may be cell phones, microwave ovens, or many other devices that can cause interference.

    You might try moving that AE and your sound system into another room, to see if you still get disruption. If not, it's possible there's an interference source that's near enough to your bedroom to cause interference, but not near enough to cause interference in other parts of the house.

    You might also check the remote possibility that the problem isn't WiFi related at all. Make sure all your cabling to your sound system and speakers is secure. Also test to make sure the cut outs aren't in the same place in the same songs, which would indicate the audio file is corrupt or incomplete. Also check volume to make sure speakers aren't cutting out to prevent blowing.
     
  16. mgirg macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2008
    #16
    Have you tried changing the channel your wifi network is broadcast on to a less cluttered one? There is a good dashboard widget called airport radar (free) which tells you which channel all the other networks in your area are broadcasting on, then in your router settings you can change it to a less cluttered channel. You could also try changing the channel on any cordless phones you use.

    I used to get a lot more interference until I did this. Having said that I still get interference but mainly when streaming from my iPhone rather than my iPad, so you could try to change the device you are streaming from.

    I don't one if this would work but you could also try getting another airport express and putting it half way between the two and using it to extend your network? Does anyone know if this would help?

    Mike
     
  17. BreakGuy thread starter macrumors 6502a

    BreakGuy

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    #17
    I'll move it into another room tomorrow and try it out.

    All the cables are secure and correct. I've unplugged and replugged them in many times to check this so I'm confident this isn't the issue. As for the individual audio files being corrupt, the cut outs occur at random and happens regardless of the file being played. I play it through my MacBook's speakers and there isn't an issue, so again I'm confident it's not a corrupt file issue. I don't have the volume anywhere near as loud as it can go, so the speakers cutting out to avoid a malfunction is unlikely.

    As I said, when I change channel I seem to have lower speeds, ironically. Being on this same channel allows me to maintain high WiFi speeds when surfing the internet.

    I've tried to extend the network using the AirPort Express, however the AirPort Express will flash orange reporting a problem which it nor I can't seem to identify.
     
  18. BreakGuy thread starter macrumors 6502a

    BreakGuy

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    #18
  19. blueroom macrumors 603

    blueroom

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    #19
    That's your problem. A very old and discontinued G router.
     
  20. BreakGuy thread starter macrumors 6502a

    BreakGuy

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    #20
    Very old? Our ISP only sent it to us a few months back after the other one failed.

    Okay, so would you recommend an AirPort Extreme Base Station? There is also a PS3 that needs to connect wirelessly, non-Apple smartphones and PC's which visitors may bring to the house.
     
  21. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

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    #21
    D-Link DSL-G604T Release Date: 01/2006
     
  22. BreakGuy thread starter macrumors 6502a

    BreakGuy

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  23. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

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    #23
    It could only get better. 5 year old technology is like 50 years old in the computer business!
     
  24. blueroom macrumors 603

    blueroom

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    #24
    The AirPort Extreme is an excellent router, plus you can try it for 14 days and return it if it doesn't solve your problem. Just use the DLINK DSL-G604T as a wired Gateway and shut off its WiFi.
     
  25. BreakGuy thread starter macrumors 6502a

    BreakGuy

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    #25
    How much better is the question? I don't want to be forking out for something that is going to make minimal difference, if any.
     

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