Why does my MBP Wireless suck???

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by phil1995, Aug 4, 2008.

  1. phil1995 macrumors member

    Aug 4, 2008
    I finally made the switch and purchased a new MBP about a month ago. So far, I love everything about this computer except the wireless. It really sucks. My wife has a Toshiba that never has any issues on the same router.

    I have contacted apple support and they tried to blame my router (using a Mikrotik). So I switched the router for a Linksys WRT54G. Same issues with the linksys. I am on vacation this week and have tried to use the MBP at various locations and it seems to drop packets every few minutes regardless of the router.

    I gave up entirely on using any kind of encryption, because is just didnt work. Dropped out every few seconds. I am using only Mac filtering and it still doesnt work properly.

    The problem I encounter is that everything will be working fine, and all of a sudden the wireless connection will just break. If I go and try to ping the connection between the MBP and the router, I will have about 80% packet loss until I turn the airport off and back on again. Then I am good for another 5 - 10 minutes.

    Am I the only one having this problem? What can i do to resolve this? Any help would be greatly appreciated. I am about to the point to go buy a USB wireless adapter and just abandon the airport card.
  2. alphaod macrumors Core


    Feb 9, 2008
    The MBP has so-so wireless, but have you tried resetting Airport?
  3. nephilim7 macrumors regular

    Jun 13, 2008
    sounds fried, I'd take it to a genius bar and explain to them it takes a while to manifest and see what they say.
  4. phil1995 thread starter macrumors member

    Aug 4, 2008
    I originally had the router upstairs (where I used my PC laptop for years with no issues) and went to the extreme of hard wiring ethernet downstairs and installing my router within 5 feet of where I primarily use it.

    I am about ready to give up on it.
  5. phil1995 thread starter macrumors member

    Aug 4, 2008
  6. nephilim7 macrumors regular

    Jun 13, 2008
    there is no magic software solutions or forum posts or conversations that can replace bad hardware. Take it to the genius bar. When wireless cards go out they die exactly as you are describing.
  7. SchneiderMan macrumors G3


    May 25, 2008
    i dont think its a problems with your mbp, but with your wireless router/internet provider
  8. NotFound macrumors 6502a


    Nov 30, 2006
    Strange, I had worse wireless issues with my white macbook :confused: I would get dropped connections periodically. But now I don't have those issues.
  9. okatidubi macrumors regular

    Apr 15, 2008
    I had the same problem too with my mac during the first few weeks. However, I played around with airport and ever since my connection has been great. Not sure if it'll do the job for you, but it doesn't hurt to try.

    1. Open network preferences
    2. Click the "Location" drop out box and select "Edit Locations"
    3. Add a new location by clicking the +
    4. Give it a new name and click done
    5. Right now you should see the new name under "Location"
    6. At the left side, click the AirPort Tab. Below the word AirPort it should say "No IP Address"
    7. Search for your network and enter the network's password if any.
    8. Click "On AirPort" if it's off and click Apply.

    Like I said, it may not work for you but it's worth a try. :)
  10. pinktank macrumors 6502

    Apr 5, 2005
    my wireless is better tahn every other notebook that people have around me
  11. phil1995 thread starter macrumors member

    Aug 4, 2008
    Thanks for the suggestion guys. I have tried most everything. I do not have a local "genius bar", but I do have a repair center. I am going to take it to them and let them test it.

    As far as it being my router / ISP, it must be every router / ISP in the world then, because I have tried this at many, many locations. MY PC's do not / did not have a problem with the router or the ISP. I just changed ISP's also. No change from one to the other.

    I am starting to believe this is truly a hardware issue.
  12. gr8bob macrumors regular

    May 16, 2008
    My MacBook Pro had certain issues with the AirPort (it's a Broadcom 802.11n based) in both Leopard and in Boot Camp.

    In Leopard, I tend to get a lot of signal drop-offs reported within the router, in Boot Camp/XP, twice it froze up on me whenever I did something to it. First time was doing a "repair" operation since it couldn't detect any signal at all while the router was just in the next room (and my other laptop was connecting steadily), second time was when I switch on "Bluetooth Collaboration" settings under the configuration tab. Froze up on me one I clicked the OK button.

    Compared to my previous Atheros-based AirPort card, the Broadcom is crap.
  13. Bobioden macrumors 68000


    Sep 23, 2007
    If you are within your first 90 days, give Apple a call.
  14. DiamondMac macrumors 68040


    Aug 11, 2006
    Washington, D.C.
    As others have said, if the wireless is that bad and it is new, take it to get it fixed

    MBP does not have the absolute best wireless but it is far from "bad" imo
  15. weckart macrumors 601

    Nov 7, 2004
    It is a combination of the card and the way Apple has implemented 802.11n, most likely.

    There are a number of routers that Macs do not play with nicely at all. For example, the Belkin N router is a complete no-no with Macs. It displays exactly the same symptoms as you describe with yours. Unfortunately, it is a matter of trial and error trying to find routers that do work.

    Currently - Apple's own routers and Netgear (flakey hardware, prone to dying) seem to be the safest choices. Avoid Belkin like the plague - absolutely rotten customer service. I have heard that DLink is also problematical. Read the router reviews at Amazon. You will see the same problems cropping up time and time again with certain routers and Apple computers.

    None of these problems occur under Windows, surprise, surprise.
  16. 41qser macrumors regular

    Sep 5, 2007
    -1 on Belkin routers

    I've been blaming my MBP for months as being the problem.

    Finally, the MacPro's airport also started acting up - dropping signal, disconnecting I swapped out the Belkin for an Airport Express I already had and reconfigured my network to use it as primary -- poof. No more problems.
  17. winninganthem macrumors 6502a


    Jun 10, 2008
    Ah I see, so basically the Mac hardware doesn't play very well with other types of routers?

    I have the same problem you described, the Wifi on my MBP is very intermittent when working with my Linksys Wireless G router. It'll completely drop out and die altogether about every 5-10 minutes or so. Of course it reconnects and everything but it's a very unpleasant experience so when I'm at home I just use the ethernet if I can. Haven't tried going to other places looking for Wifi yet though.

    So yeah, you aren't the only one, so, hope maybe this is some reassurance that it's not just your machine.
  18. crazzyeddie macrumors 68030


    Dec 7, 2002
    Florida, USA
    He's not connecting to a Draft-N router. This is totally a non-issue in this case.

    The WRT54G is one of the most widely used routers in the world, and I've only seen conflicts with Macs using very specific combinations of MAC filtering and strange password configurations.

    This definitely sounds like a bad Airport card. Get it replaced and all should be fine.
  19. phil1995 thread starter macrumors member

    Aug 4, 2008
    Thanks again for all your replies. I have scheduled an appointment to take it in on monday.

    I had thought about buying an apple router, but I cant bring myself to spend that kind of money for another Apple product when they cant even manage something that my wife's $300 Toshiba does fine. Not getting a good feeling about anything with Apple and wireless.

    If they give it back to me and tell me its my router, then I am going to look into ordering one of these Quickertek pci express wireless cards. Anyone had any experience with these cards?

  20. Andrewiski macrumors newbie

    Oct 18, 2008
    Intel Wifi and Prisim Chipset Acess Points

    You may want to try this link. I had a simular problem with an embedded device awhile ago and the intel chipset. It has somthing to do with the power management and speed negotiation packets. Anytime we had a problem it was always a built in intel chipset that had the issue.


  21. phil1995 thread starter macrumors member

    Aug 4, 2008
    I took it to the Apple service center and ....

    of course they couldnt find any problem. Said they were using the same router.

    I have bought an oem atheros based airport card to replace the broadcom card.

    Does any one think that it would be worth the effort replacing the card? Also, will this void my warranty?
  22. sixtyone macrumors newbie

    Feb 25, 2008
    mine has been a bit better at home (with a belkin wireless n router) but i still have to select my network to "reconnect"...

    however when i'm at university, the connection is flawless...

    there was an update today that i download and so far, so good at home
  23. DeVizardofOZ macrumors regular


    Jan 12, 2006
    Antarctica City;)
    This is not good....

    ... it simply scares me.
    APPLE is charging a lot of money for their products, more than others for same hardware.
    Can we not expect a near perfect product?
    Good WiFi-reception is essential, but that should be EXCELLENT for the price.
    No EXCUSE Steve Jobs.
    The APPLE fans are too forgiving;)
  24. cathyy macrumors 6502a

    Apr 12, 2008
    My Macbook Pro (early 2008) has TONS of issues with wireless.

    Feb 4th - Bought my brand new Macbook Pro.
    Feb 14th - School term starts, wireless keeps dropping every few minutes.
    Mid-march - After countless headaches from trying to fix my wireless, I finally get Apple to fix it.
    June - Random disconnects start again but I managed to find a workaround.
    Early September - Disconnects at least once an hour
    3 days after the last event - I get Apple to replace my wireless card again
    Yesterday - Disconnected 5 times in an hour.
    Today - Disconnected 8 times in 3 hours.
    Tomorrow - Scream at Apple again.
  25. DeVizardofOZ macrumors regular


    Jan 12, 2006
    Antarctica City;)
    When the new Intel MB's and MBP's hit the shelf's about 2 years
    ago, about 15% of those had problems, ranging from bad screens, batteries, heat, keyboard-keys, etc. and I speculated that QUALITY CONTROL at the production level was
    unacceptable. I personally know a few people which had their screens replaced 3 times, batteries twice, and so on.

    APPLE, charging a higher (on average) price than the competition for similar hardware, is lucky to have a FAN-CLUB instead of critical users... Your problem is clearly QC related and totally unacceptable.

    In 1996 I bought a Toshiba Tecra (camera and DVD- drive) and retired this machine 10 (TEN!!!) years later without EVER having a hardware problem.

    I offer my expertise to Stephen JOBS to eliminate all quality related pre-production and production issues, so that the name APPLE does not just stand for top industrial design and a very reliable OS, but also for reliability and overall high product quality.

    The issues on the new Hardware are a shame.

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