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Standard User DanielCoffey67
(regular) Wed 02-Oct-19 11:52:24
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4G speed : weak Band 3 vs strong Band 20


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What difference in speed would you expect to see between a moderate Band 3 and a strong Band 20 cell?

In my particular location I can see several moderate to weak Band 3 cells with RSRP ranging from -92dBm to -107dBm as well as some Band 20 cells ranging from -73dBm to -92dBm.

The antenna is an Omni antenna and is in a rural area around three miles from the known masts. Provider is EE.

The modem strongly prefers the Band 3 cells even though they are weaker and delivers peak speeds of around 20-25Mbps down and 15-20Mbps up. Off peak it rises to around 30-35Mbps down and 20Mbps up.

The reason I ask is that soon the modem provider is adding the ability to choose and lock your cell to the firmware and I am interested in knowing what to expect.
Standard User gary333
(member) Wed 02-Oct-19 12:47:21
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Re: 4G speed : weak Band 3 vs strong Band 20


[re: DanielCoffey67] [link to this post]
 
My B525 shows 4 bars at -99 to -102 I get on my local mast using band 3. This is good enough for 55mb/sec at the dead of night, and bobs along at around 25-35mb/sec most of the time.

In fact, my B525 shows 5 bars if I hold the router up and get around -94db ish.

Edited by gary333 (Wed 02-Oct-19 12:47:50)

Standard User pipcoo
(learned) Wed 02-Oct-19 13:03:12
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Re: 4G speed : weak Band 3 vs strong Band 20


[re: DanielCoffey67] [link to this post]
 
I have a 3 sim in an Huawei B715 router. I was getting 4-5 bars on B20 (800 MHz) but speeds were about 10-15 meg down and 3-5 meg up. I was fiddling around with the settings and locked the router to B3 (1800 MHz ). Although the signal strength wavers between 2-3 bars speed is much better at 30-40 meg down and 15 up. Even at peak times it rarely goes below 20 meg so the strongest signal is not always the best. When you have the option , play around with locking bands and see which works the best for you.


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Standard User DanielCoffey67
(member) Wed 02-Oct-19 13:33:09
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Re: 4G speed : weak Band 3 vs strong Band 20


[re: pipcoo] [link to this post]
 
That is useful to know, thanks. I hadn't realised how much slower Band 20 was. At least it seems the modem knows what it is doing when it sticks to Band 3.
Standard User jchamier
(eat-sleep-adslguide) Wed 02-Oct-19 13:56:28
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Re: 4G speed : weak Band 3 vs strong Band 20


[re: DanielCoffey67] [link to this post]
 
Depends on the network, viz:
1) Three has 5mhz of Band 20, and 15mhz of Band 3.
2) EE has 5mhz of Band 20, and 40+ mhz of Band 3
3) O2 has 10mhz of Band 20, and no Band 3 I know of
4) Vodafone has 10mhz of Band 20, and 5mhz of Band 3

5mhz of LTE is not very much. This is generally intended for the "hard to reach" areas, to ensure voice calls (VoLTE) can be handled indoors, where generally data would be covered over WiFi.

Its not the band in terms of performance, its the amount of LTE spectrum, and then the reliability of reception, if you are a long way from a mast a higher frequency (more capacity) can be harder to receive.

-107dBm indoors is pretty reasonable, most handsets hold on to LTE upto -110 or -115 before releasing and looking for something else

plusnet 80/20 (2/jun/14) at 470m; high sync history: 64/9(Sep/17),54/6(Jan/19),46/7(Sep/19)
20 years of broadband from 1999's ntl:cable modem trial - Live BQM

Edited by jchamier (Wed 02-Oct-19 13:57:37)

Standard User DanielCoffey67
(member) Wed 02-Oct-19 14:52:19
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Re: 4G speed : weak Band 3 vs strong Band 20


[re: jchamier] [link to this post]
 
We are on EE and are about three miles from the nearest known cells.

The antenna is outdoors hence the reasonable signals at that distance although we are among trees and have a neighbouring house in the line of sight.

It sounds like sticking on the Band 3 is a good choice rather than hopping to Band 20.

Cheers.
Standard User jchamier
(eat-sleep-adslguide) Wed 02-Oct-19 16:15:51
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Re: 4G speed : weak Band 3 vs strong Band 20


[re: DanielCoffey67] [link to this post]
 
Very much so. As EE have a lot of capacity on Band 3 (1800mhz) they often deploy two separate carriers, a 20mhz carrier, and either a 10mhz or 15mhz depending on location. So you MIGHT get 30 or 35mhz of LTE spectrum, and if the cell is lightly loaded, you might see some high speeds.

Contrast to the band 20 which is only 5mhz, where lightly loaded the maxium speeds would be around 30 to 40 Mbps, assuming no other user. Typical Band 20 speeds in built up areas would be 5 Mbps.

plusnet 80/20 (2/jun/14) at 470m; high sync history: 64/9(Sep/17),54/6(Jan/19),46/7(Sep/19)
20 years of broadband from 1999's ntl:cable modem trial - Live BQM
Standard User andynormancx
(member) Wed 02-Oct-19 18:38:37
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Re: 4G speed : weak Band 3 vs strong Band 20


[re: jchamier] [link to this post]
 
I'm guessing using two different carriers, even if they are in the same band from the same mast still requires carrier aggregation support on the modem ?
Standard User jchamier
(eat-sleep-adslguide) Wed 02-Oct-19 19:30:46
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Re: 4G speed : weak Band 3 vs strong Band 20


[re: andynormancx] [link to this post]
 
Yes. B3 + B3 in that case.

plusnet 80/20 (2/jun/14) at 470m; high sync history: 64/9(Sep/17),54/6(Jan/19),46/7(Sep/19)
20 years of broadband from 1999's ntl:cable modem trial - Live BQM
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