Question Asus ZenWifi (AX6600) slow speeds :(

SlovBoy

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Hey guys!

Another one one of those "slow speeds" posts, but I ran into a bit of a snag

I received a 2x ZenWifi unit (as a present) which I plugged into my modem. Everything went fine with the setup.

However - I have a 1 GB/s connection and I am mostly getting 500-600 connection speeds (sometimes even 700). My wife - who has an iPhone 12 Pro Max - exceeded it and got 789.

When I use a wired connection, I get 1 GB/s easily.

It's odd because the other node is about 3 meters away, and the more I walk away from the main one - even when I'm next to them both - I get 500-600 which occasional dips to 400 and even 300!

They operate on 2.4 and 5 GHz channels respectively.

What is the issue here?

Help

EDIT - after further tests, the internet got even worse. It just drops the connection every now and again. So far it's stable, but if I close a door or just turn towards a corner I get sub-100 speeds - and that's just unacceptable.

EDIT 2:
I switched to AP mode and it increased the speed on my laptop to 937/235. I also activated Mu-Mimo features as well.

It even increased the speed on my wife's iPhone 12 Pro Max for the time being, but now it's back to 600-700 and we're next to the router.

The connection drops after a while and we need to connect to another 5ghz frequency.

EDIT 3:

I have three different networks I guess - the regular one (2.4) and two more We Are Andrzej Duda (inside Polish joke :D ) 5g-1 and 5g-2.

Looking at my Asus Router app:

View: https://i.imgur.com/pGEG2Qg.jpg
- the node carries 5g-1 and 2.4?

While the main one - that's 3 meters away - carries everything? Or 5g-2? It's wired via wireless backhaul. Or is it the other way around?

I got confused here.

Help :(
 
If you do not have a cable between the units you are running a wireless repeater. Repeaters work very poorly in general because you are sending 2 times the radio traffic. In many cases this is all sent on the same radio so you cut your bandwidth by half. The other way is that is uses different radio to talk to the main router and the clients. If it uses 2.4g for the backhaul you are limited by that speed. if it uses 5g you then are being a massive pig. You are now using all the possible 2.4 and 5g radio channels. This guarantees you conflict with your neighbors on one or more of the radio channels decreasing your speed.

You best option for wifi is to not use any kind of repeater. Many times a weak signal directly from the router will out perform a repeated signal. You should only use a repeater when you are willing to trade poor performance for coverage. It take careful placement so you get good signal from the main router but can still provide good signal to the remote location.
 

SlovBoy

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If you do not have a cable between the units you are running a wireless repeater. Repeaters work very poorly in general because you are sending 2 times the radio traffic. In many cases this is all sent on the same radio so you cut your bandwidth by half. The other way is that is uses different radio to talk to the main router and the clients. If it uses 2.4g for the backhaul you are limited by that speed. if it uses 5g you then are being a massive pig. You are now using all the possible 2.4 and 5g radio channels. This guarantees you conflict with your neighbors on one or more of the radio channels decreasing your speed.

You best option for wifi is to not use any kind of repeater. Many times a weak signal directly from the router will out perform a repeated signal. You should only use a repeater when you are willing to trade poor performance for coverage. It take careful placement so you get good signal from the main router but can still provide good signal to the remote location.
First, I would like to thank you for your help and a more detailed response :)

So, by using it in AP mode I am effectively using both as repeaters?

What would be the more optimal solution?

What if I turned off the 2.4 frequency?

What if I put the main router back to "router mode"?

I did a manual reset (unplugging it from the socket) and the speed is considerably better but I KNOW it's going to drop.

So, what is the solution?

Thanks again!
 
How do you have it connected.

To run in AP mode it must be connected via a ethernet cable. Running in AP mode is the best option to get better wifi coverage. The 2 units will still interfere with each other so it takes proper placement but the data only passes over 1 wifi between the router and the end device.

Any other solution is running as a repeater. The first question is how bad is the coverage. Many people just put these repeater units in almost as room decorations and think it will somehow increase wifi but it actually decreases it.
 

SlovBoy

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How do you have it connected.

To run in AP mode it must be connected via a ethernet cable. Running in AP mode is the best option to get better wifi coverage. The 2 units will still interfere with each other so it takes proper placement but the data only passes over 1 wifi between the router and the end device.

Any other solution is running as a repeater. The first question is how bad is the coverage. Many people just put these repeater units in almost as room decorations and think it will somehow increase wifi but it actually decreases it.
Ok, give me a couple of hours, I'll get back to you.

I'm gonna take pictures.
 

SlovBoy

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How do you have it connected.

To run in AP mode it must be connected via a ethernet cable. Running in AP mode is the best option to get better wifi coverage. The 2 units will still interfere with each other so it takes proper placement but the data only passes over 1 wifi between the router and the end device.

Any other solution is running as a repeater. The first question is how bad is the coverage. Many people just put these repeater units in almost as room decorations and think it will somehow increase wifi but it actually decreases it.
Thanks again!!
 

SlovBoy

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How do you have it connected.

To run in AP mode it must be connected via a ethernet cable. Running in AP mode is the best option to get better wifi coverage. The 2 units will still interfere with each other so it takes proper placement but the data only passes over 1 wifi between the router and the end device.

Any other solution is running as a repeater. The first question is how bad is the coverage. Many people just put these repeater units in almost as room decorations and think it will somehow increase wifi but it actually decreases it.
Ok, I'm back.

After literally rebooting it twice (maybe three times), the connection seems ok now - I'm still averaging 400-600 on my Mi 8. And 400-700 on my wife's iPhone 12 Pro Max - which is odd, considering that it should go higher.

My setup (apartment with 81m2) is as follows:

The first router and the other unit are the red dots (this is a crude drawing but ok):

View: https://imgur.com/gallery/57H6oVW
 
There are a number of things. You could have had a IP conflict on the devices. It also could be that devices were not picking proper radio channels and interfering.

There is a reason people that run companies pay to have wireless surveys done. To get optimum results the wifi channels and their power must be manually configured.

You have to be very careful about your expectations on wifi6. The major problem is the amount of bandwidth on the 5g radio.....this is in addition to your neighbors trying to use it at the same time. Wifi6 to get very fast rates needs to use 160mhz radio bands. The only way to get 160mhz is to use radio frequiences that may conflict with weather radar. It takes very special software in the radio chips to meet the legal requirements. Many phones and a number of routers only support 80mhz radio bands to avoid this problem. In these cases wifi6 is not a lot better than wifi6.

This should all be fixed in wifi6e since it has lots more bandwidth on 6g radio band. Equipment is just starting to get to market but the global chip shortages seem to to be affecting wifi6e also. Also manufactures are trying to dump all their old wifi6 stuff before the general public figures out it will soon be outdated.
 

SlovBoy

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There are a number of things. You could have had a IP conflict on the devices. It also could be that devices were not picking proper radio channels and interfering.

There is a reason people that run companies pay to have wireless surveys done. To get optimum results the wifi channels and their power must be manually configured.

You have to be very careful about your expectations on wifi6. The major problem is the amount of bandwidth on the 5g radio.....this is in addition to your neighbors trying to use it at the same time. Wifi6 to get very fast rates needs to use 160mhz radio bands. The only way to get 160mhz is to use radio frequiences that may conflict with weather radar. It takes very special software in the radio chips to meet the legal requirements. Many phones and a number of routers only support 80mhz radio bands to avoid this problem. In these cases wifi6 is not a lot better than wifi6.

This should all be fixed in wifi6e since it has lots more bandwidth on 6g radio band. Equipment is just starting to get to market but the global chip shortages seem to to be affecting wifi6e also. Also manufactures are trying to dump all their old wifi6 stuff before the general public figures out it will soon be outdated.
How would one resolve an IP conflict?

The routers are on 80 MHz.

Would an additional node help matters?

What about turning off 2.4?

Naming the SSID's differently?
 
You need to check the lan IP. If your main router is say 192.168.1.1 you need to make very sure the other device do not use that IP. You also need to choose IP that do no conflict with PC. You need to check the DHCP setting on your main router to see which are not in the pool. Generally you can safely use high IP like 250 and 251.

You are already getting better speeds than most people I would not mess with things if it is working. Speed doesn't really matter when you get above say 100mbps, it is mostly bragging rights. The only thing it helps is file downloads. What I found out when I first got fast internet is that it downloaded large games much faster but the total install process still took forever.

You can ignore the 2.4g. You seldom get more than 100mbps on 2.4g which means all your devices are running on 5g.
 

SlovBoy

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You need to check the lan IP. If your main router is say 192.168.1.1 you need to make very sure the other device do not use that IP. You also need to choose IP that do no conflict with PC. You need to check the DHCP setting on your main router to see which are not in the pool. Generally you can safely use high IP like 250 and 251.

You are already getting better speeds than most people I would not mess with things if it is working. Speed doesn't really matter when you get above say 100mbps, it is mostly bragging rights. The only thing it helps is file downloads. What I found out when I first got fast internet is that it downloaded large games much faster but the total install process still took forever.

You can ignore the 2.4g. You seldom get more than 100mbps on 2.4g which means all your devices are running on 5g.
My main router runs separate than my node.

But the SAME IPN is shared between the 2.4 and the 5G-1 network.

The 5G-2 - the most stable one - is on a "wireless backhaul".

The DHCP setting - what do you mean by which aren't in the pool?

So, it isn't weird that I'm getting sub 400 speeds then occasionally?

What about the iPhone?

And what about another node?

I'm sorry I'm bombarding you with these questions, I'm a complete noob.
 
Maybe just leave the DHCP alone if you do not understand it.

Wifi is always subject to interference so you will always get some random times it does not work as well. You are attempting to use all the wifi radio bandwidth available, It guarantees you will get interference from your neighbors. Adding more nodes is only going to make this worse.

You have to step back and look beyond some speedtest number. You need to think about what you REALLY need to run fast. Things like cell phones do not need really fast connections. They have very limited storage and does it really matter if you completely fill it in 10 seconds rather than 30 seconds. In general high speed downloads is only going to really help when you do something like download 20gbyte game to a gaming pc. There are some other applications that also download large files but your general web surfing and even watching 4k netflix will not benefit by going over even 50mbps.
 

SlovBoy

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Maybe just leave the DHCP alone if you do not understand it.

Wifi is always subject to interference so you will always get some random times it does not work as well. You are attempting to use all the wifi radio bandwidth available, It guarantees you will get interference from your neighbors. Adding more nodes is only going to make this worse.

You have to step back and look beyond some speedtest number. You need to think about what you REALLY need to run fast. Things like cell phones do not need really fast connections. They have very limited storage and does it really matter if you completely fill it in 10 seconds rather than 30 seconds. In general high speed downloads is only going to really help when you do something like download 20gbyte game to a gaming pc. There are some other applications that also download large files but your general web surfing and even watching 4k netflix will not benefit by going over even 50mbps.
The issue for me here is that I'm paying for a 1gb/s connection and I bought a product that costs almost 500 € - a product that coincidentally promotes itself as the best of the best - when it comes to mesh networks.

To find out that it potentially isn't the case - is kinda ridiculous.

So, do you believe that nothing is wrong with my router and it "is what it is" or should I attempt other methods?

The DHCP thing intrigues me. Can I <Mod Edit> something up?
 
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Be nice if we could put marketing guys in jail when they tell lies.

Wifi numbers are extremely deceptive. If we use the same method to rate a gigabit ethernet cable they would call it 2gbit because they add transmit and receive speed together. Except ethernet can actually do that but wifi is half duplex and can not actually transmit and receive at the same time. 2 other major factors. Because you are running in repeater mode it is only using 80mhz channels. To get the top speeds they put on the box you must have 160mhz channels.....but there is not room to run 2 160mhz data streams so they drop it to 80mhz to avoid interfering. The other major thing is stuff like QAM1024 does not work well unless you are very close to the router. So the repeater will never run the most dense data transfer between the router and the repeater.

All these greatly cut your speed. I have not even started though there is massive amounts of overhead they ignore and any time you get any interference it will cut your top speed.

The rates you are getting are actually more than I would have guessed for someone running repeaters.
 

SlovBoy

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Be nice if we could put marketing guys in jail when they tell lies.

Wifi numbers are extremely deceptive. If we use the same method to rate a gigabit ethernet cable they would call it 2gbit because they add transmit and receive speed together. Except ethernet can actually do that but wifi is half duplex and can not actually transmit and receive at the same time. 2 other major factors. Because you are running in repeater mode it is only using 80mhz channels. To get the top speeds they put on the box you must have 160mhz channels.....but there is not room to run 2 160mhz data streams so they drop it to 80mhz to avoid interfering. The other major thing is stuff like QAM1024 does not work well unless you are very close to the router. So the repeater will never run the most dense data transfer between the router and the repeater.

All these greatly cut your speed. I have not even started though there is massive amounts of overhead they ignore and any time you get any interference it will cut your top speed.

The rates you are getting are actually more than I would have guessed for someone running repeaters.
You got that right.

I really don't know what to do now... Return it or continue living with a finicky wifi device that was supposed to be anything but finicky.
 

gggplaya

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I think your expectations are unreasonable, the wifi connection speed is not the same as the actual bandwidth you'll get. Most phones are only 2x/MIMO. So the best connection speed you'll get is 1200mbps with 80mhz channel width with wirelessAX(wifi6). It even says that in the iphone documentation: https://support.apple.com/guide/deployment-reference-ios/iphone-wi-fi-specification-details-apd1c22e481c/web

Wi-Fi specifications for iPhone 11 and iPhone 12
The table below details the Wi-Fi specifications for the iPhone 11 and iPhone 12 models listed in the above table.

802.11 standard, name, frequencyMaximum PHY data rateMaximum channel bandwidthMaximum MCS indexMaximum spatial streams
ax@5 GHz1200 Mbps80 MHz11 (HE)2/MIMO
ac@5 GHz866 Mbps80 MHz9 (VHT)2/MIMO
a/n@5 GHz300 Mbps40 MHz7 (HT)2/MIMO
ax@2.4 GHz195 Mbps20 MHz9 (HE)2/MIMO
b/g/n@2.4 GHz144 Mbps20 MHz7 (HT)2/MIMO



Since wifi is half duplex, your wifi getting 600mbps is just about what you would expect with a perfect wireless AX signal.

If you're on wireless AC, a 433mbps bandwidth is what you could expect with a perfect wireless AC signal.

I think the expectation to get gigabit on your phones via wifi is not reasonable. At least not until Wifi 6E becomes dominant. With wifi 6E at 6ghz with 160mhz channel width, you should be able to hit gigabit speed with a connection speed of 2400mbps and actual half-duplex bandwidth of around 1200mbps with a 2/mimo antenna.
 

SlovBoy

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I think your expectations are unreasonable, the wifi connection speed is not the same as the actual bandwidth you'll get. Most phones are only 2x/MIMO. So the best connection speed you'll get is 1200mbps with 80mhz channel width with wirelessAX(wifi6). It even says that in the iphone documentation: https://support.apple.com/guide/deployment-reference-ios/iphone-wi-fi-specification-details-apd1c22e481c/web

Wi-Fi specifications for iPhone 11 and iPhone 12
The table below details the Wi-Fi specifications for the iPhone 11 and iPhone 12 models listed in the above table.

802.11 standard, name, frequencyMaximum PHY data rateMaximum channel bandwidthMaximum MCS indexMaximum spatial streams
ax@5 GHz1200 Mbps80 MHz11 (HE)2/MIMO
ac@5 GHz866 Mbps80 MHz9 (VHT)2/MIMO
a/n@5 GHz300 Mbps40 MHz7 (HT)2/MIMO
ax@2.4 GHz195 Mbps20 MHz9 (HE)2/MIMO
b/g/n@2.4 GHz144 Mbps20 MHz7 (HT)2/MIMO



Since wifi is half duplex, your wifi getting 600mbps is just about what you would expect with a perfect wireless AX signal.

If you're on wireless AC, a 433mbps bandwidth is what you could expect with a perfect wireless AC signal.

I think the expectation to get gigabit on your phones via wifi is not reasonable. At least not until Wifi 6E becomes dominant. With wifi 6E at 6ghz with 160mhz channel width, you should be able to hit gigabit speed with a connection speed of 2400mbps and actual half-duplex bandwidth of around 1200mbps with a 2/mimo antenna.
But the iPhone isn't hitting those speeds...
 

SlovBoy

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Yes it is, connection rate is 1200, so with half duplex you should only see about 600mbps which is what you’re getting.
I see.

Ok, I have a better understanding of it now. Thanks.

One more question - the connection also keeps dropping occasionally. Why does that happen? Interference?

I also noticed that whenever the dryer is on the connection tanks unexpectedly.
 

SlovBoy

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Bit of an update:

Two days ago my internet started dropping unexpectedly - 7-8 days per day.

This also somehow affected the internet speed, now it can't exceed 300 mb/s no matter what I try - even on the iPhone as previously specified.

My laptop still seems to work well - it's getting about 600-700 mb/s.

I have 4 nodes now (a friend of mine loaned his other two to me) and the result is either the same or much worse.

I run it on Router mode now.
 
I have 4 nodes now (a friend of mine loaned his other two to me) and the result is either the same or much worse.
That is actually what you would expect to happen. Your main problem is you already have too much radio signal both in your house and interfering from your neighbors.
You add more nodes and you add more radio signals that stomp on each other. It also confuses the end devices and they will jump around between the radio sources causing drops.

The only solution is the new wifi6e and all the new bandwidth on the 6g radio. We will see how well that actually works and how long it takes for that to also get overcrowded
 

SlovBoy

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That is actually what you would expect to happen. Your main problem is you already have too much radio signal both in your house and interfering from your neighbors.
You add more nodes and you add more radio signals that stomp on each other. It also confuses the end devices and they will jump around between the radio sources causing drops.

The only solution is the new wifi6e and all the new bandwidth on the 6g radio. We will see how well that actually works and how long it takes for that to also get overcrowded
Yeah, I'll definitely give them back to my friend. Took them just to try and see if it's good enough. But alas...

So basically, there is nothing I can do?

100-300 is normal for a device like this? Not trying to be facetious or anything, just to see if I have any other options.
 

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