Major Interference with Airport Extreme

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by jason.siegel, May 9, 2014.

  1. jason.siegel macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2011
    #1
    I live in a large apartment complex and am getting major interference with my new Airport Extreme. My 25+ Mbps connection slows to a crawl, and the Internet is frustratingly slow. Is there any way to speed up my wireless signal?
     
  2. Altemose, May 9, 2014
    Last edited: May 10, 2014

    Altemose macrumors G3

    Altemose

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2013
    Location:
    Elkton, Maryland
    #2
    Major Interference with Airport Extreme


    Set the channels to auto. See how it does. If already on auto then download iStumbler and see what channels the competing networks use. The only non-overlapping channels are 1, 6, and 11 in the 2.4 GHz range. You want a signal to noise ratio of about 30-50.
     
  3. jason.siegel thread starter macrumors 6502

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    Jun 15, 2011
  4. Altemose macrumors G3

    Altemose

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    Mar 26, 2013
    Location:
    Elkton, Maryland
    #4

    Sorry. Meant to type non-overlapping but it AutoCorrected.
     
  5. Dreadnought macrumors 68020

    Dreadnought

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2002
    Location:
    Almere, The Netherlands
    #5
    Overlapping: what channels are your neighbours using.

    Any wireless device can interfere with the wifi signals. From dect phones and babymonitors to wireless mouse and keyboards. They all use the same frequency. Try relocating some machine (computer, airport) so that they are not in a corner of a room or next to another device that uses a wireless connection (dect phone base station for example). This might do the trick.

    Our wifi connection dropped completely when my girlfriend turned on her pc with wireless Logitech mouse and keyboard. Took me a while to figure it out. Replaced them with a wired mouse and keyboard and have a rock solid connection again.
     
  6. Fishrrman macrumors G4

    Fishrrman

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2009
    #6
    I recommend what Altemose said above in reply #2.

    Download iStumbler and use it to check what frequencies all the OTHER wireless users nearby are on. Take handwritten notes if you need to.

    Then.... manually set up your Airport to the "unused" frequencies, so that the frequencies it broadcasts on will not be "stepped on" by the other wireless users.

    Do this for both the ghz speed settings on the Airport. It will take a few minutes to do "the discovery" and setup, but I think you'll find the results worth the trouble...
     
  7. wuush macrumors member

    Joined:
    May 4, 2014
    #7
    Your Wireless Network uses channels in the 2.4 Ghz or 5Ghz band (5 Ghz is better most of the times, because of many interfering devices on the 2.4 Ghz Band, like DECT Phones, other Routers, Microwaves etc.)

    This is what the Wlan Channel Settings in my Router look like:

    [​IMG]

    I know it's in german, but you should get the point.

    Interference is grey.
    Other Wlan Networks are Yellow.
    My Wlan Network is Blue, and interferes with channel 7-13.
    I could turn on the mode for dense cities and it would only interfere with 10-13.

    I only use 2.4 Ghz right now, but in your situation 5Ghz should be a better option because not many Routers use the 5Ghz Band right now, which means less interference for you and more bandwidth.

    For example in my area noone is using 5Ghz but it should also be noted, that the range is not better because the 5Ghz waves are shorter, which makes them less likely to penetrate walls. But when you are in an apartment building with many wireless networks and not super old thick walls 5ghz is probably better.
     
  8. jason.siegel thread starter macrumors 6502

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    Jun 15, 2011
  9. thedeske macrumors 6502a

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    Feb 17, 2013
  10. wuush macrumors member

    Joined:
    May 4, 2014
    #10
    I'm glad i could help ;)
    if you can't switch to 5Ghz because of range issues/old devices/etc. you should try to get a dual band router (i think the airport extreme is one but i'm not 100% sure)
    or just try to find a free channel on the 2.4 GHz band without interference.
     
  11. jason.siegel thread starter macrumors 6502

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    Jun 15, 2011
    #11
    I'm on the newest Airport Extreme, which is dual-band. I believe the 5Ghz frequently was simply off before. I set up a new 5Ghz signal. Is it possible to make them the same wireless name so that my computer uses to whichever is the best?
     
  12. Altemose macrumors G3

    Altemose

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2013
    Location:
    Elkton, Maryland
    #12
    Yes. When you checked the box to create the 5 GHz network it separates the 2.4 and 5 by name (SSID). Unchecking it will make the computers and the AirPort negotiate what band to use.

    Tip: Option click the Wi-Fi icon in the menu bar to see channel, speed, and signal information.
     
  13. jason.siegel thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2011
    #13
    Hm. Okay, then apparently until I separated them out, my Air was using the 2.4Ghz signal rather than the 5Ghz, even though the 5Ghz signal was far superior. Why was this?
     
  14. Altemose macrumors G3

    Altemose

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    Mar 26, 2013
    Location:
    Elkton, Maryland
    #14
    Check that everything has the latest firmware. Sometimes resetting the AirPort fixes it.
     
  15. jason.siegel thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2011
    #15
    It is.
    Is there a way to check whether my Air is using a 2.4 or 5 Ghz signal, when it's connected to a wireless name with both?
     
  16. Altemose macrumors G3

    Altemose

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    Mar 26, 2013
    Location:
    Elkton, Maryland
    #16
    Option click on the Wi-Fi icon in the menu bar.
     
  17. jason.siegel thread starter macrumors 6502

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    Jun 15, 2011
  18. Altemose macrumors G3

    Altemose

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2013
    Location:
    Elkton, Maryland
    #18
    Try resetting the AirPort.

    To do so, simply unplug the AC cord, insert a paperclip in the reset hole, and plug it back in. The front power light should begin to flash rapidly.

    Check for the latest firmware too!
     

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