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There are a number of factors that come into play when talking about ADSL(2+) speeds so it’s difficult to pin point what you’ll achieve until you’re actually connected. The maximum speed available via ADSL is 20Mbps but you may see lower speeds depending on a number of factors.
Distance from the exchange
Your distance from the exchange plays a big part in what speeds you’ll receive. Essentially, the more cable between your home and the exchange, the higher the transmission loss and therefor the lower the speeds. Just to keep things interesting, in a small number of cases you may be too close to the exchange and suffer from reverse transmission loss which again can lower your speeds.
It’s important to remember that it’s the length of cable between your home and the exchange that affects the speed and not the physical difference. Generally, the cable length and your physical location run somewhat hand in hand however in some circumstances your cable may take a different route to your property than what your neighbours does which could mean your cable length is higher or lower than what theirs is.
In general, we are hesitant to provide an ADSL service to those with 4kms or more of cable between their home and the exchange as we want to ensure all of our customers get the best experience possible with their Optus service.
The quality of the network
ADSL services are provided to customer over the copper network which over time will degrade. We invest millions each year in maintenance and upgrades of the network however this too can play a part in the speeds you can receive.
Number of users online at once in your area
ADSL, like other fixed broadband services, supply a number of users in one area from the same source. In the case of ADSL this source is called a DSLAM and is located within your local exchange. Each DSLAM has its own backhaul which is essentially the amount of bandwidth allocated to service the users connected to it. The more users connected at the same time, the more demand there is for the bandwidth which means there is less available for each individual user which in turn could see an overall decrease in speed for everyone connected to that DSLAM.
As mentioned above, we invest millions in the maintenance and upgrading of our broadband networks, including increasing the backhaul to cater for the increased demand from users. These upgrade projects may take time depending on equipment and engineer availability. If you’re experiencing slow speeds it’s definitely worth speaking to our Tech Support team on 131344 to see if they can give you an update or help improve the speed. Just because an area needs an upgrade doesn’t mean there isn’t anything else affecting the service which we may be able to help you with.
The quality of wiring within your premises
Just as the quality of our copper network could affect your connection, so can the quality of the wiring within your property. Optus is not responsible for the upkeep of the wiring inside your home, however we may be able to help with cable replacement for a fee, alternatively you can contact your local electrician if they have a Telco license, and they will be able to test and repair the existing cables in your home.
The amount and type of equipment you have connected
What you have connected to the sockets internally as well as the amount of equipment can also affect the speeds you're seeing - if you have services such as a Back to Base alarm system or a Medical Alert System that run through the phone line it's important these are filtered correctly as this may interfere with the speed of your connection. If you're unsure if they are filtered correctly it's best to contact the provider of that service directly. Further to this, every peice of equipment that's connected to the phone line apart from the modem needs to be filtered - you are provided with filters in the modem self install kit but you can also purchase additional filters from electronics stores.
Users on the same Modem (extra tip by community member ScottyR)
Some modems can only perform at a certain level of performance while providing its service to a maximum number of users at one specific time. This problem usually only occurs when the children within the household 'hog' the internet. The great news is we can suggest an easy fix, if you use a WIFI modem feel free to regularly change the password and make the users perform daily household chores to 'unlock the password'. This gets jobs done while you can have the time to utilise great speeds and performance of you internet without any lag or booting due to exceeded users on the modem. If you use a standard Modem with Ethernet connections, Take away ALL ethernet cables (usually the blue ones) and use these as rewards/barganing tools for things to get done. I promote healthy lifestyles so why not use them as a skipping rope outside for the kids to play with. (Disclaimer - I hold no responsibility for broken ethernet cables )