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Expert
Stuey3d
Posts: 417
Registered: ‎13-03-2012
0

HomeHub 4 Review and Signal Tests (as promised)

[ Edited ]

Have just recieved my Home Hub 4 and now have it in and set up so heres my little review.

 

Its fast! Not only is it faster to power on and connect to the internet, my devices also connect to each other quicker ie: the little airplay icon pops up on my iPhone much quicker than it used to.

 

I dont know if the speed increase is down to the hub itself or the way i have it wired as i have had to change my configuration due to the new hub being too wide to place where i had the hub 3.

I now have the hub on a book case one end of my front room and now have 2 cat 6 cables run along the skirting board 1 into the modem for infinity and the other into an 8 port gigabit switch for the rest of the devices, previously everything was plugged directly into the hub 3 as it was closer to the devices.

 

Signal wise 2.4 performs about the same as the Hub 3 however due to the relocation the hub now has glass photo frames near it possibly blocking part of the signal, before the hub 3 used to sit on a speaker with clear line of sight to the seating in my front room. For the tests below i did plug the hub 3 in the same location as the hub 4 for benchmarking as the signal is weaker slightly in the front room due to its new location and the aforementioned photo frames.

 

Below is some signal and speed tests i have carried out, testing device was an early 2008 MacBook white core2duo with 4GB ram and full 802.11n dual band wifi built in, speed tests were done on Speedtest.net

 

HomeHub 3

 

Front Room where hub located

60% signal 11% noise

 

Main bedroom, room directly above front room where home hub located 

50% Signal 11% Noise

 

Rear Bedroom 

50% signal 11% noise

 

Bathroom furthest point from hub in house 

42% signal 11% noise

 

Speed Test Front Room/Main Bedroom 49mb down 12.4 up ping 31ms

Speed Test Bathroom fluctuates between 35 - 40 down and 12.4 up ping of 31ms

 

HomeHub 4

 

Front Room

2.4ghz 61% Signal 10% Noise 

5ghz 60% Signal 13% Noise

 

Main Bedroom 

2.4ghz 54% Signal 10% Noise

5ghz 48% Signal 13% Noise

 

Rear Bedroom

2.4ghz 49% Signal 10% Noise

5ghz 51% Signal 13% Noise

 

Bathroom 

2.4ghz 42% Signal 10% Noise

5ghz 35% Signal 13% Noise

 

SpeedTest Front Room/Main Bedroom 49 down 12.4 up ping 28ms

SpeedTest Bathroom 47.7 down 12.1 Up ping 28ms

 

Ping is marginally quicker with the Hub4, but please bear in mind between switching hubs the openreach modem was unplugged due to rewiring everything around it.

 

Overall a worthy upgrade for those who can get it for free or £35, but not worth £109 however i doubt many will pay that price as they can get full N900 routers for less and for a few quid more a 802.11ac can be had.

Expert
Stuey3d
Posts: 417
Registered: ‎13-03-2012
0

Re: HomeHub 4 Review and Signal Tests (as promised)

The only negative point about the new hub is that it comes with FON/BT Wifi enabled on both bands which i now have to wait to be disabled again.

 

According to FON i am already opted out but you can opt out again for the signal to be sent to the hub again, however it does take ages to be disabled.

Expert
Stuey3d
Posts: 417
Registered: ‎13-03-2012
0

Re: HomeHub 4 Review and Signal Tests (as promised)

[ Edited ]

Another thing that is a little annoyance on the Hub 4 but nothing major as most customers wont even use this screen is the Home Network screen where you name the devices dont allow you to use punctuation and spaces anymore.

 

For example on the HomeHub 3a and 3b my iPhone was called "Stuey3D's iPhone 4S"

on the Hub 4 it has to be called "Stuey3D-iPhone" i think this was the case on the older home hub 2 as well so a step backwards me thinks.

 

Its nothing im too bothered about but the OCD in me that likes everything neat doesnt like it as the names looked better with punctation and spaces.

 

Also for people interested the Hub 4 is made by SagemCom the same people who made the Hub 3a

Expert
Stuey3d
Posts: 417
Registered: ‎13-03-2012
0

Re: HomeHub 4 Review and Signal Tests (as promised)

[ Edited ]
Further update regarding the homehub4 and its wifi signal.

My ipad 2 locks onto the 5ghz band perfectly and holds on to it in every corner of the house with no problems. The iPad used to have a problem on both my homehub 3's where it would randomly loose a bar or 2 of signal and then jump back upto 3 again even when sitting next to the hub, and when I used to use it in the bathroom the signal would quite often drop off completely for a few seconds depending on how it was held, I think this is due to the 2 year old dropping it a few times over the last year or so.

However with the Hub 4 I haven't witnessed this problem once, I have a full 3 bar signal throughout the house and when I check the hub config pages it confirms I am attached to the 5ghz network so I am one happy customer with the Hub 4.

One thing ipad 2 owners will notice is that although the iPad 2 can connect to the 5ghz band it doesn't support the 40mhz wide channels so no faster speeds unfortunately however the lack of interference will boost performance quite noticeably, newer apple devices such as my wife's iPhone 5 can take advantage of the 40mhz wide channels in the 5ghz band and will have a higher link rate so its wise to leave the hub at the default setting as it will adjust to whatever device is using it.
NJW
Newbie
NJW
Posts: 2
Registered: ‎24-05-2013
0

Re: HomeHub 4 Review and Signal Tests (as promised)

Just got the BT Hub 4 - 22 May with my Infinity2 upgrade - agree great speed of connection, but only when close by - the range around the house seems poor on 2.4Ghz compared to the BT Hub 2 I've had for last few years. The walls are still the same thickness but my kids are now complaining of dropping connections in rooms where they used to work fine. I'm now studying range extenders to try & solve the problem and trying to decide which is most appropriate. I'm thinking maybe TP-Link TL-WA850RE 300Mbps Universal Wall Plug Range Extender but I'm no expert and confused about the 2.4Ghz and 5 Ghz thing for the HH4 - will this extend both frequencies? Any views or recommendations welcome!
Expert
Stuey3d
Posts: 417
Registered: ‎13-03-2012
0

Re: HomeHub 4 Review and Signal Tests (as promised)

[ Edited ]
If you still have the home hub 2 you can use that, just get a powerline network kit a decent set can be had for about £30.

1. Connect computer via Ethernet to homehub 2 and log into web interface at 192.168.1.254
2. Go to advanced settings - Home network - ip addresses, change IP address of router to 192.168.1.175 (works well for me, you can use others) and disable dhcp server and hit apply, you will loose connection at this point.
3. Plug a homeplug powerline adapter next to homehub 4 and connect it to the hub by an Ethernet cable
4. Plug the other homeplug powerline adapter where you have a signal dead spot and connect your newly reconfigured hub 2 via Ethernet like you did with the hub 4.
5. This step is optional but worth doing as any devices you have will just choose the strongest signal automatically, but log into the homehubs hub 4 will be 192.168.1.254 and hub 2 will be whatever IP address you chose on step 2, go to advanced - wifi settings and change the SSID (network name) and password so that both hubs are exactly the same.

Voila 2 home hubs both pumping out a decent wireless signal.

I'm surprised you are having problems with the hub 4 as i find the 2.4ghz signal to be as good as the hub 3 I've been using which is very good, maybe have a look at wireless channels before you spend any money as my hub4 likes channel 1 on auto but channel 6 gives me a stronger signal. Download a wifi scanner app for your computer, I use iStumbler on the mac which is free and have a look to see what your neighbours wifi is doing and choose channel accordingly.
NJW
Newbie
NJW
Posts: 2
Registered: ‎24-05-2013
0

Re: HomeHub 4 Review and Signal Tests (as promised)

Thanks for all your top tips - I'll experiment!
Aspiring Expert
Dean235
Posts: 330
Registered: ‎28-12-2012
0

Re: HomeHub 4 Review and Signal Tests (as promised)

Maybe the HH4 is giving the 5Ghz priority more rather than the 2.4Ghz band...Not saying I'm correct....or anything...

Expert
Stuey3d
Posts: 417
Registered: ‎13-03-2012
0

Re: HomeHub 4 Review and Signal Tests (as promised)

I've found with my home hub 4 when I am in the same room as it sometimes 5ghz is stronger and other times 2.4 is stronger but they are usually around the same strength only a few % in it, I cannot tell if the signal strength is related to devices using the certain band ie: when something is connected to 5ghz it gets more power than 2.4 and vice versa as I have devices that connect to both bands usually at the same time.

I have also found in my house at least that the 5ghz band actually travels quite well and only in the bathroom which is the furthest point away from the hub that 5ghz drops a bit below the 2.4 and that drop is by about 10% as you can see in the results above. All I know is the iPad which I had signal issues on before with 2 home hub 3's loves the 5ghz band and has no dropouts at all and holds onto a full signal everywhere in the house on the 5ghz band.
Aspiring Expert
GeekOfBroadband
Posts: 235
Registered: ‎12-05-2012
0

Re: HomeHub 4 Review and Signal Tests (as promised)

Does dual band only mean it will work with 2.4Ghz and 5Ghz at the same time?
http://www.speedtest.net/result/3358809478.png