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roger06's picture
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BT 'master' socket?

Any sparkies / phone engineers here?

Should my BT master socket be wired directly to the thick black cable that comes in from the road? 'cos mine is wired to the thinner white cable which runs up three floors higher where it joins the thicker cable in a junction box in the loft.

I reckon this is exposing my broadband to interference and reducing its speed. It's come to my notice as I get about 8meg whereas very close neighbours get 13 - 14meg.

Advice appreciated (and sorry this isn't a strictly wi fi question!)

Big Chris's picture
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RE: BT 'master' socket?

The regulations say we're only allowed to run the external cable a max of 2 metres internally, due to possible damage if there's a lightning strike.

 

If the internal cable is in good condition and it's the proper stuff (solid core copper. A lot of places use multi-strand alarm cabling, which is rubbish), there should be no reason to think the internal cable will be affecting your broadband.

More likely will be the condition of the cable externally, or which cable your line is on leaving the exchange.... For example, your cabinet (green junction box at the end of the road) could be fed by cables C, M and S coming from the exchange. They all take different routes, so the C cable may run for 2.0 miles between exchange and cabinet, The M cable might run 2.5 miles between exchange and cab, and the S cable might run 3.5 miles.

The assignment of cables is totally random and not dependant on location. You and your closest 2 neighbours could well be on 3 separate cables, so, of course, if you're on the longest run, you'll have greater losses along the length.

There's not a lot you can do about this I'm afraid. If you're within their loss parameters they won't entertain a shift. You could ask a friendly Openreach engineer to run a test on your line and see if there are any faults on it (I can do it, but I'd need your phone number).

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RE: BT 'master' socket?

Thanks Chris, that's really useful.

The phone line was installed 4 years ago, we were busy re-furbishing the house and I was out on the day so my father in law supervised. OpenReach were here all day and apparently had to route a cable not just to the telephone pole nearby, but up to the main road about a quarter of a mile away.

I think as so much of their day was taken up with this they left in a bit of a hurry hence only taking the external cable to the loft. I was told the job needed some 'more doing', but I can't remember what, and as phone and broadband worked I didn't really give it a second thought.

I understand about 2 metres in the house. I can't work out why though they routed the cable into the loft as opposed to down the outside of the house and then directly connected to the master socket as I've seen in most people's houses.

I've bought a new master socket and was going to unscrew the black cable from the junction box in the loft then attach it, plug in my router and see if there's a difference - is this a good idea? I know it'll leave the phone not working but it would be a useful test wouldn't it?

I would appreciate it if you could test my line but obviously don't want to post my number on a public forum. I'll see if there's another way of getting it to you.

Thanks again.

 

Roger

 

 

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RE: BT 'master' socket?

By all means connect a master socket in the loft and connect your router and see if there's an improvement.

 

I'm with you on the cabling. I tend to run as much cabling externally as possible, as it's usually quicker and easier. Obviously, it's not possible when customers in terraced houses request the socket at the back of the house (have had requests to throw the cable over the roof in the past!), but in most instances I run external cable straight to the master socket (or NTE if you wanna use the official parlance Smile )

 

If the mods are happy to pass my email address onto you, I'm fine with that.

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RE: BT 'master' socket?

Thanks again Chris. I assume swapping the wiring from the junction box to a master socket is fairly straightforward? I've got the tool for poking the wires in the holes.

Actually, I have created a temp email address,, perhaps you could email me on that and I'll send you my number?

 

Thanks

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RE: BT 'master' socket?

Yeah, it's just a pair of wires.

 

I'll email you now.

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RE: BT 'master' socket?

Hi Chris

I've replied with my phone number...

 

 

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RE: BT 'master' socket?

Hi Chris

 

I've sent you an email - it's actually about 2 mb slower with the new master socket connected to the main black cable... I'm bemused!! :roll:

 

Roger

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RE: BT 'master' socket?

Have you tried one of these - they do actually work quite well (if u have the right sort of socket).

 

http://www.productsandservices.bt.com/consumerProducts/displayTopic.do?topicId=25075

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RE: BT 'master' socket?

Thanks Joe - yes, already got one!

 

 

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RE: BT 'master' socket?

roger06 wrote:

Hi Chris

 

I've sent you an email - it's actually about 2 mb slower with the new master socket connected to the main black cable... I'm bemused!! :roll:

 

Roger

 

Sorry, not checked that account lately.

 

Weird you're getting slower speeds straight on the dropwire (there's some more lingo for you:) )

 

I wonder if it's worth a call to your CP to see if there's anything more they can do for you.

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RE: BT 'master' socket?

Cheers Chris

Yes it is odd. What's my CP? 

 

Was thinking about giving this chap a call - what do you think?  http://www.petersfieldman.com/

 

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RE: BT 'master' socket?

Communications Provider. Smile

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RE: BT 'master' socket?

Hi Chris

Do you know what number I should call to get a UK call centre for BT and some 'proper' help? My YouView has been unusable lately for catch up. I've phoned BT twice, both times getting Indian call centres and both times *promised* a 2nd line engineer call within 24 - 48 hours which has not happed on either occasion.

I do find when you get through to the Scottish call centre you get your problem sorted but it's so hit and miss...

 

thanks

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RE: BT 'master' socket?

roger06 wrote:

Hi Chris

Do you know what number I should call to get a UK call centre for BT and some 'proper' help? My YouView has been unusable lately for catch up. I've phoned BT twice, both times getting Indian call centres and both times *promised* a 2nd line engineer call within 24 - 48 hours which has not happed on either occasion.

I do find when you get through to the Scottish call centre you get your problem sorted but it's so hit and miss...

 

thanks

We don't even have direct U.K numbers ourselves! I'll have a chat with the guy I'm training on Monday. Funnily enough, they've kicked him off of BT Vision to do external work.

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RE: BT 'master' socket?

Cheers Chris me old chum...

Finally BT called back today. NIce chap, a few time zones away I think but we got on. Anyway, he did take ownership, he did believe there was a problem and he came back saying there were faults on the line which would get sorted.

He told me to leave the HH plugged into the test socked for the next 24 - 48 hours which I'm doing (no phone!) . Things seems good, speed has been up as high as 13 mbps but, more importantly, connection seems reliable and my daughter is happy with streamed Peppa Pig!

They're sending an engineer on Monday to check the exchange, box on the road ( I gather) and my house. They said to cancel if things improved - they have, but should I still get him to check it out?

 

 

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