very low Airport signal strength on iMac 27"

Discussion in 'iMac' started by DrNelly, Nov 5, 2009.

  1. DrNelly macrumors member

    Jun 13, 2008
    I am having random slowdowns on my connection speed using Airport (nothing to do with the notorious performance issues which I also suffer).

    So I dug a little deeper and checked my linksys router signal strength for each client on my network and the result could not be more disappointing for the iMac.

    My appleTV and my HP 2140 get 90% (it's right by the router) and 80% (floating around the same floor of the house) signal strength respectively, download speed and throughput seems very stable on both, however on the iMac (that's about 10 feet away from the router) the signal strength is 28% !!! this is incredibly low and even though it does not always hurt download speed it does hurt the total throughput when sharing files over the network. Also the SNR (signal to noise ratio) is incredibly low, below 30 all the time.

    If my other devices were in the same ballpark I wouldn't worry, but this is a huge difference, I wonder if the aluminum case back hurts this much wifi signals..

    I knew iMac weren't stellar competitors in the wifi race but this is another hit and this is the second issue I run into in less than 2 weeks with it.

    Does anybody else have this issue? also can someone check their "real" signal quality of their new iMacs 27".
  2. ob81 macrumors 65816


    Jun 11, 2007
    Virginia Beach
    I have an Airport extreme. Signal strength has not been an issue for me. iMac is about 30ish feet away from the router 2 rooms away.
    Good luck.
  3. ntrigue macrumors 68040


    Jul 30, 2007
    10.6.2 is bringing significant fixes to Airport/Graphics issues. Try facing the rear of the iMac toward the router and turning the Airport on it's side.
  4. sentros macrumors member

    Oct 29, 2009
    Also you should mount your router as high up as possible.
  5. n459umb4786ers macrumors regular

    Aug 9, 2009
  6. Yakuza macrumors 6502a


    Jul 24, 2007
    Lisbon, Portugal
    So the signal can't find nothing in the way and every wireless system can recieve the signal, clean, without interuptions. simple as i think:D

    i always keep mine in the top shelf, for maximum efficiency.

    Putting it under something or near ground, is like going under a cave to talk on the cell phone
  7. ashkelon28 macrumors newbie

    Jun 14, 2008
    same issues 21.5"

    I'm having the same wireless issues with my 21.5". My problem, more than weak signal, has been a complete absence of signal even though my Macbook Pro (mid 2008) which is sitting right next to the imac connects perfectly and without fail.

    Both systems are sitting about 8 feet away from my time machine. Very disappointing.
  8. Bryan Bowler macrumors 68040

    Sep 27, 2008
    While I absolutely love the all-aluminum design, I was worried about this when I saw the aluminum back. I hope the next SL update helps!

  9. Amacg08 macrumors newbie

    Mar 13, 2008
    I am also having this issue with my new iMac 27" (my second in 2 weeks) my previous 24" never had problems in the exact same location!?

    Very annoying as I show full signal strenght but often says "Cannot connect to internet" all other devices on network are fine. Even google struggles to load..

    I don't expect any update to fix this as 10.6.2 has not, it's obviously the case that's causing the problem. :mad:

    Regret selling my 24" now! :rolleyes:
  10. dougb256 macrumors member

    Nov 16, 2009
    My 27" is getting a strong signal. One thing to check - how old is your router? I just replaced my 4-yr-old router with a new one, made all the difference in the world. I wouldn't have believed it, but apparently routers wear out. I had done the latest firmware upgrade and everything looked okay, but I was getting signal loss, then my speeds would drop down to nothing. I did some asking around and was told to try a new router. Success!

    We have a 2-story 2500' home w/ 2 iMacs, 2 MacBooks, a laptop PC (for work), 2 iPhones and a printer, all connected to the router. I'm probably around 30' from the router.

  11. Amacg08 macrumors newbie

    Mar 13, 2008
    Thanks for the advice Doug, but as previously mentioned this new machine is the only 1 having trouble on my network all other devices are fine as was my 24" just last week.. I also doubt that of all the people reporting issues on so many forums that they all need to replace their modems. Add to that an Apple rep admiting hands down that this is a hardware issue.
  12. ashkelon28 macrumors newbie

    Jun 14, 2008
    same old stuff

    So we're another week or so past my first post and after three calls to apple and lots of dumb suggestions the problem still persists. My macbook pro continues to have zero issues with staying connected to my time capsule yet my iMac 21.5" can't stay connected for more than ten minutes.

    It is currently sitting about 6 feet away from the time capsule. Looks like they screwed us on the casing. I like a good looking apple computer as much as the next guy but it needs to work!
  13. s3e3 macrumors member

    Oct 25, 2009
    No problem here.

    I hooked up my new 27" yesterday and had no issues with the airport.
    I'm using a time machine and it displays the signal strength etc, the specs we consistent with the macbook pro that was sitting right next to it and an airport express that I use for my printer.
  14. SydneyDev macrumors 6502

    Sep 15, 2008
    If the case was the problem then everyone would have the issue. Maybe the arial is disconnected/broken inside the computer.
  15. ashkelon28 macrumors newbie

    Jun 14, 2008
    Yeah I guess you are right. It does seem like there are people on every forum that are having wireless issues with the new iMac's though.

    Sadly they make these things almost impossible to get into yourself or I'd take a look.
  16. rahinco macrumors newbie

    Nov 8, 2009
    I'm having the exact same problem, I've tried changing bands which has no effect and also changing the DNS settings.

    Did you find any solution to this?
  17. MacHamster68 macrumors 68040


    Sep 17, 2009
    hmm it depeds , ok its worth to check the aerial, easy done , but the case could be a issue too alloy does not do the reception any favors especially if the router is "behind" the iMac , just a thought if the back would be from steel (no stainless)it could act like a big parabolic aerial and improve the reception , but with alloy you have the opposite effect

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