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Randy The Tech Professor

October 14, 2014 at 1:21 pm

Not Getting 50 Mbps Download Speed From Comcast? Here’s How! (Part 2)

Comcast Xfinity Speeds

Hello everyone,

I have received many comments from my first Comcast post back in March of 2012 (June 2015 post here). Many people in my area, and around the country are using Comcast and there are many questions about both wired and wireless Internet speeds. Here are my latest suggestions:

1) Comcast has increased their Internet speeds: “Performance” now offers speeds up to 50 Mpbs (up from 25 Mbps), “Blast” is now 105 Mbps, (up from 50 Mbps), and “Extreme 105” has been bumped to 150 Mbps. I have not seen the 150 Mbps offer in my area of Tennessee.

2) Comcast has come out with new Docsis 3.0 modem/routers in order to handle their speed increases. The two that I am seeing in my area of service are the Wireless Gateway 1 and the Wireless Gateway 2. You can rent these modem/routers from Comcast or buy them. I would buy them if I were you.

3) These new modem/routers are very decent. They have four 10/100/1000  Gigabit Ethernet Ports and they will definitely get you the speeds (wired) that Comcast advertises.

4) The wireless capability of the router is not bad (the Wireless Gateway 2 is dual band). If you want more speed/distance, call Comcast toll free (855-308-9452), and have them put the Gateway into “Bridge Mode”. Then you can use your router of choice (make sure that it is a 10/100/1000 port/switch router). I like this one. Even though 802.11ac speeds are higher than 802.11n, I don’t think that they are high enough to justify the higher price.

5) Once the Comcast technician has put the router/modem into bridge mode, ethernet ports 2, 3, and 4 will no longer work (disabled). Connect a Cat6e cable from port 1 of the Comcast Gateway to the WAN port (Uplink/Internet) of your router of choice. Now you can configure your router as you like.

6) Wireless speed will vary (router positioning, house construction and layout, etc.), but it will be very good. If you are paying for the 105 Mbps tier your wireless speeds will of course be faster than that of the 50 Mbps tier.

Please feel free to comment. Let me know about your Comcast Internet experience.

Best wishes,

Randy The Tech Professor



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  • DC47
    1:49 pm on December 2nd, 2014 1

    I’ve got a Netgear docsis 3.0 modem and an older Linksys router. With one computer connected, I get around 28 to 30 Mbps. When two computers are connected, the speed frequently (but not always) drops to the 8 to 12 Mbps range. This is usually very quick to occur when the second computer connects to the internet. But the speed never drops to anything in between this range and the higher range.

    What do you think is causing this? Any advice?

  • Brad
    12:30 pm on June 10th, 2015 2

    Thanks for your informative posts. I am still not clear on one aspect of the installation protocol to optimize speed. Is there a real advantage to using CAT6 wiring between the DOCSIS3.0 modem and the router? I currently have CAT5e with a run of some 40 ft. so upgrading is not trivial but certainly doable.

  • Randy Knowles
    5:27 pm on June 10th, 2015 3

    Hi Brad,

    Cat6 cables can be used to power 10GBASE-T, or 10 Gigabit Ethernet, while the maximum that Cat5e cables can support is 1GBASE-T, or 1 Gigabit Ethernet. This is because Cat6 cables perform up to 250 MHz, more than twice that of Cat5e cables (100 MHz). I like the Asus RT-N66U router because it has 10GBASE-T Gigabit Wan ports. You must have Gigabit out from the DOCSIS 3.0 modem and Gigabit in to the router (connected with Cat6 cables). You’ll see a great difference in wireless speed!

    Best wishes,
    Randy Knowles

    My advice: don’t go cheap. Insist on Gigabit Wan port. You’ll see the the jump in download speed much more than tweaking channels.

    Another good option if you want to save some $$ is to buy the Netgear C3000 (single band cable/router — no 5G band) but you’ll also get great wire / wireless speeds for about $99.99

  • Brad
    6:59 pm on June 10th, 2015 4

    Thanks Randy. I’ve got a Motorola Surfboard 6121 and a Apple AirPort Extreme Gen5. It looks like a wiring project is in my future.

  • 1mind4fun
    9:33 am on June 22nd, 2015 5

    Your input is fantastic. I have comcast 105 service in Orlando, FL – getting over that on our cell phones and tablets, running from a Motorola Arris modem (400 series DOCSIS 3.0) and into a Netgear Nighthawk AC 1900 Smart WiFi router (model R7000). My Lenovo desktop is hardwired to the router – and I am only getting like 40 mbps – any suggestions on getting that speed up? The desktop has a Pentium R Dual Core CPU E5800 @ 3.2 GHz processor, 4 GB Ram and is 64-bit and is running Windows 7 Home Premium.

  • Randy Knowles
    10:01 pm on June 22nd, 2015 6

    Thanks for the comment,

    Do these two things:

    1) Use Cat6 ethernet cable from router to desktop.
    2) Replace the desktop NIC (Network Interface Card). I’ll bet you have a 10/100 Mbps card which will not give you gigabit speeds. Install a 10/100/100 Mbps NIC and you will fly with gigabit network connectivity!

    Let me know how it goes. Best wishes,
    Randy Knowles


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